The seminal text in play studies is Homo Ludens by Johan Huizinga. This work popularised the notion of the Magic Circle as a conceptual space in which play occurs. That is, the state in which the various actions in play have meaning...So when you are in the circle, you do the things (kicking a ball in soccer, acting out a word in charades, delivering a well-deserved spanking*) that makes the game/play happen. There is also a safety in that circle. You can behave in ways that you wouldn't in other aspects of life. I realized how much I was enjoying smashing people over the head while I was playing Black Knight last evening, where I wouldn't really enjoy doing it to people in real life.
What this discovery means is that I have a new way to think about something that's been missing. What I want to do now is find/create/recognize magic circles in my life and to give myself permission to act and enjoy while in the circle.
School is a magic circle of sorts - it has it's own rules. I notice too that people 'forgive' things of a student that they wouldn't of a non-student. School is one place where I need to accept that failure (or at least incomplete, non-pristene success) is okay.
*Intimate/sexual relationships have magic circles too!
And friendships, and families.
Okay, now that the kitchen floor is dry, I'm going to go attempt to brew another second cup of coffee.