Posted on June 25th, 2013
or $15, all comers were invited to make their own hula hoop to take home at the end of Family Day for Roy and Peaches’ circus camp. After spending some time hula-hooping with Peaches after we’d arrived, I was no craftier than I’d been when I walked in the door but I was excited about the prospect of having my own hula hoop. And, sure, Peaches could make one too, whatever; the one she had at home now qualified as a ‘hand hoop’ she had informed me and so, I suppose, it was only fair.
But the difference is that Peaches is good at everything in that way young things are. If there had been a stilt-making station, she could just as easily have made her own pair of those and tottered out the door on them. I, on the other hand, had completely forgotten I could hula hoop! In the afterglow of my five minutes of energetic hula-hooping to a local band’s cover of “It’s Time” by Imagine Dragons, I spent the next 45 minutes measuring and cutting tubing, dropping rocks inside of the hoop and taping that bad boy up.
“You know, it’s not until you take the hoops out of the circus that you really appreciate how big they are,” Scott observed.
It’s not that my hoop is so outlandishly big (although it is), it’s that it represents something momentous: the remembrance of aptitudes past. There are things that get stuffed away in a drawer—you don’t need them, you’re growing up or raising children or teaching for America, and so they get pushed to the back and buried under all of the new things that fill up your life. You forget that you are capable of more than responding to the demands of any given day, that there was a time when you could creatively respond to challenges with energy and excitement occasionally, even, to a soundtrack.
When you could hula-hoop.∗