I know what you're thinking -- where's the photographic evidence?
Alas, I left my camera at home. But last night, I really did have dinner with a clown -- a very smart, funny and kind one too!
My clown-friend's name is Aaron and I met him at the open house at the Ecole Nationale de Cirque here in Montreal. (He's in his second year at circus school.)
It was a working dinner (though we had fun, too). I had told Aaron that I'm writing a story set at a circus camp and there are two clowns in it. He kindly agreed to look over my clowning scenes -- and he had some super suggestions.
It's fun hanging out with a clown. For one thing, Aaron makes great funny faces. I took lots of notes so I could work some of that stuff into my manuscript. I also observed how physical clown humour is -- Aaron uses his body to make people laugh. He even told me that sometimes, when he's out with friends, he pretends to trip or bang into a wall -- just to see people's reactions.
Aaron is the first clown in his family, though they've been supportive of his career ambitions. He says there's nothing like the feeling he gets when he makes a group of people laugh: "It's like a drug."
Next time I have dinner with Aaron I promise to take a picture. In the mean time, here's to fun research -- and clever clowns!
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