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Perfection is for A!*h*#es

May 14, 2022

There’s a theater artist whom I adore – racy, edgy, loving, shocking –  named Taylor Mac. I was first introduced to Taylor (who uses the pronoun “judy” which Taylor claims “is as annoying to navigate as it is delicious”) in the performance of A 24-Decade History of Popular Music which took place over two nights. Taylor was off-the-charts intriguing and clever. I was in awe and in love with judy’s insight, wit, and ferocity.

Lighting up the stage with the most outrageous and brilliant costumes (created by Machine Dazzle), Taylor said a line that I’ll never forget: “Perfection is for assholes.”

Zoinks! This is a game changer! 

I spend so much of my time running around fretting about how things that I do aren’t perfect. I’m late on getting back to people. I haven’t meditated for 3 weeks. I spaced out when my kid was talking to me. I had a panic attack on the highway for no good reason. On and on and on.

If Taylor Mac – who has received a bazillion awards including a “Genius Grant” from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation – isn’t perfect than how can I be. And heaven knows, I would hate for judy to think of me as an “asshole”.

Another brilliant person, Madame Curie who was a physicist, chemist and freaking Nobel Prize winner agrees. “Have no fear of perfection; you’ll never reach it,” she said.

Like the late Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh says, “Do your best.” That’s it. Your best.

So whether you tend to listen to beyond-gender, brilliant performance artists or straight shooting physicists, the message from the genius-set is the same: 

No one is perfect. 

So don’t beat yourself up. Don’t be an asshole. Do your best and go in peace!