I’ve always liked Ruby Wax and when I saw she was performing her new show Sane New World about her thoughts on mindfulness I jumped at the chance to see her.
She didn’t disappoint.
Her show somehow strikes the right balance between humour and honesty in dealing with her struggle with depression and her use of mindfulness to deal with the insanity of the modern world. There are jokes in abundance…her replies to spam mail being one…she simply cannot resist replying to emails even dealing with erectile disfunction “I don’t need you now but keep in touch in case I do in the future” she replies…
She has recently completed a masters at Oxford in Mindfulness and is now using this as a tool to deal with the constant bombardment of modern life. She regaled with examples of focussing her hands on the steering wheel when faced with the imminent onset of road rage. She even got the Glasgow audience to fall silent for a few moments as she lulled them into mindfulness, focussing on the feet I felt the solidity of the ground beneath me, focussing on sound I heard breathing and the lull of the studio lights..but she was right..the thoughts returned within seconds..”what train would I get?” “should I cook something in the slow cooker tomorrow?”…her next prompt and now back to the feet brought me back to peace for a few moments..
She chatted about retreats promising that after a weekend you would find your inner elf? Hiding under a toodstool she joked. She made light of the “positive thinking” manuals promising you that if you thought yourself beautiful you would be. Really???? How would that work? She wanted to be a ballet dancer but wasn’t blessed with the long legs for it. Thinking herself longlegged had, surprisingly for those convinced that what we believe we become, hadn’t worked so, after a tough childhood, her only options as she saw it were serial killer or comedienne. She chose the latter, thank goodness!
After her stand up show, performed with great energy, she did a workshop. A man in the balcony above asked:- “would mindfulness help his mate clear his mind block about buying a round (of drinks)?” She laughed it off!
Others posed her tricky questions which she dealt with well and openly not acclaiming to be an expert but just someone talking about her own experiences.
I met her afterwards when she signed her book for me. She looked great and was lovely.
“Has anyone ever told you you look like Cate Blanchett?” she asked me.