Dear TRENDS Diary,

I graduated from high school in 2020—a COVID graduate. My parents were pushing me to go to college. I definitely wasn’t interested. Instead, I wanted to pursue gaming. I gamed all during high school. I found it fun, engaging and relaxing. And I was good at it. Everyone said it was a dead-end pursuit. No one makes a living from gaming.

I thought about gaming like football: Most people never make a cent from playing football, but a few people make a living and an even smaller percentage of people make a lot of money from the sport. No one was interested in my comparison. Everyone wanted me to go to college.

I really wanted to see what I could do with gaming. From what I saw online, some were great; some were boring; some were weird. Just like everything else.

Eventually, a gamer let me play out his evening. Then others did too. I started getting a following. I have to admit there was some luck involved. But I also was a good gamer and a good talker. I even started making money. Not a lot, but as much as I was making at my entry-level job.


Dear TRENDS Diary - 

My name is Miss Shirley, and I love reading books. There are times when I feel lonely and different and isolated and uncertain, but I often meet somebody on the pages of a book who provides me with comfort or encouragement. And that’s when I start to realize that some of the characters on those pages are real people walking around me in my day-to-day life. And that encourages me to introduce myself so I don’t feel so alone.

The only thing I love more than reading books is reading books to children. That’s why I host “Drag Queen Storytime with Miss Shirley” at libraries all over Boulder County. There are hundreds of great children’s stories that deal with characters realizing they are somehow different, going as far back as “The Ugly Duckling.” Books that show us how characters have struggled through that conflict and how they eventually grow to live as their authentic self. And if there is a unicorn or a narwhal along the way, all the better.


Dear TRENDS Diary - 

For any dance company, real human connection with an audience has been nearly impossible since the pandemic shut down live performances. But, given the slightest crack in the closed door of daylight, we at 3rd Law Dance/Theater burst the door open and took to the great outdoors for the fourth rendition of our biannual Elision Project. Specifically, we took to the tri-level parking garage at Boulder’s 29th Street Mall for a site-specific concert that transformed an ordinary parking garage into an immersive, theatrical wonderland over four nights.

We at 3rd Law took our biggest theatrical challenge to date and turned it into a thrilling creative opportunity. We had so many logistics to overcome, from sound quality to gritty dancing surfaces to audience comfort to weather. We had a plan A, B, C and D. And somehow, we made magic with dramatic lighting, live music and thoughtful original choreography spread over multiple parking levels.


Dear TRENDS Diary,

Recent interest in alternatives to traditional approaches to community safety has reminded me of my own experience as a young psychologist many years ago.

The memory doesn’t start out well. I was an inexperienced driver (I’m from NY) heading to a Weld County property I had just decided to rent for a short-lived experiment in country living before returning to Boulder for good. I knew I wanted to move there, but I didn’t know how to get there. After an ill-fated attempt at a left turn, I tried to rejoin traffic—only to sideswipe another car, which then landed in a ditch by the road.

Fortunately, the driver was alright, if a bit shaken up. We called the authorities and then waited…and waited. Although the other driver and I managed to chat cordially, we were eager to get on with our day.