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Be radical: choose to inject surprise, fun and outrageousness into your day

“There’s power in looking silly. And not caring that you do.”—Amy Poehler

“He actually caught himself saying things like “Yippee,” as he pranced ridiculously round the house.” ― Douglas Adams thrift store x2

In my new book, Art & Soul, Reloaded, I offer what I call, Zumba for the Soul. These fun, quirky activities, add-on’s to the weekly projects, came straight off a big sheet of butcher block paper I taped to the door of my basement office when my daughter Taz was four.

Recognizing the weighty assignment of being a single parent, I was determined to do a good job raising her. But at the same time, I didn’t want to surrender my free spirit. So on the door-long piece of paper, I magic-markered ideas I could undertake to keep my mojo flowing.

A reviewer on Amazon recently called them silly stunts. And she’s right. They are, for the most part, silly.

Taking your sketchbook to the park, dancing to the bathroom or making a sock money are not listed on too many grownups’ to-do lists. Most would consider such “silly stunts” a ridiculous waste of time.

But are they?

A majority of the adults in this country are bored, lonely and afraid. They’re literally wallowing in rules, in old miserable paradigms. They have forgotten how to have fun.

In fact, if you really want to serve mankind, figure out a way to enjoy yourself and let people know that enjoying yourself is a good thing.

For me, silliness is an important public service.

So today, after one of my possibility posses, I enlisted my friend, Rhonda, to join me in my Zumba practice. You may remember Rhonda’s nickname—Never Say No to Fun Rhonda. I knew she would be the perfect co-conspirator.

The task? Find the most outrageous outfit you can at a Thrift Store. I think you’ll agree we were quite successful.

thrift store

thrift c3

Most of us don’t spend enough time in the silly zone. We’re too busy following rules, living in ruts. Because we think we have to. Or because we’re conditioned that way. It doesn’t even cross our mind we could try something else.

So maybe you’re not ready to overhaul your wardrobe, but the question I urge you to ask yourself: “What can you do to have a good day? How can you have a little fun?’

Not just today. But every day.

Pam Grout is the author of 19 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality and the just-released, Art & Soul,Reloaded: A Year-Long Apprenticeship to Summon the Muses and Ignite Your Daring, Audacious, Creative Side.

45 Responses

  1. Being silly ! I absolutely love it. Sometimes, when certain songs come up on the radio at work, I just have to “pump up the volume” and dance like nobody’s loooking, because, well, nobody’s looking ! But when people are around, it’s another story. I still have a problem when I’m not alone being silly…

      1. I LOVE THAT !!!!!! Good Golly You elevate my soul to play!!!!!!!!!!
        T H A N K Y O U !!!!!!💕🎶👀
        It’s what I asked the universe for a Birthday present!!!❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

  2. I love the thrift store suggestion! When I was in high school, my best friend and I used to try on the most ridiculous prom/fancy dresses we could find and it was a BLAST. I forgot how much fun we had until I read this. Definitely going to try the thrift store challenge. We definitely need to have more fun! XO

    1. We do. We do. Need to have more fun. This whole ridiculous outfit thing started when I was living in Kansas City. The debutante ball there is called the Jewel Ball. So we started the Zircon ball and wore weird outfits to counteract all the perfection.

  3. Hi Pam! I’m smack dab in the middle of your new book and lovin’ it. When I got to the Zumba on thrift store shopping I just had to laugh out loud! Since I am older and live only on a S.S. monthly income, the Goodwill is my actual store!! So I simply went to MY CLOSET, where all the silly outfits are anyway, and chose a few mismatched items for my day. EASY!

    1. Yes. The thrift store is my actual store, too. I like it because you can find unique outfits AND it doesn’t contribute to child labor in Asia. Plus, you can go ridiculous. Or stylish.

  4. OMG Pam! Your pics of you and Rhonda remind me of the wonderful times my sister, Rosa, and I have spent being silly, especially around our teenage daughters…dancing Irish jigs or singing out loud to all sorts of songs, oldies and current ones, etc. We are both 60+ and have done it for years. Rosa is Stage 4 breast & now, stomach cancer…silliness brings healing joy and creates memories. Thanks for sharing your wisdom!!

  5. I could have tried on clothes all day! It’s like a big, fun, free amusement park at the thrift store! We laughed so hard!

  6. Fun is good! I’ll have to figure out how as I prep for Irma. That said…hunkering down with family and friends in a boarded up house with 160 lbs of dog and at least 4 or 5 cats is sure to have it’s moments! Love it Pam.

    1. Been following Irma on Roku, and have been praying for all of you in Miami and the rest of the east coast, My three grown kids live on the Md. coast, one right in Baltimore Harbor area. SO I usually start my Fall huricaine “vigil “about this time each year Bless you, and keep you safe!

  7. I am pretty good at being silly, singing or dancing or skipping in public, blowing bubbles, talking to strangers, etc… Several years ago, I had a work partner at the restaurant who would do all sorts of silly things with me. We’d have British Accent Tuesday, Walk on Tippy-toes Wednesday, Mutter Under Your Breath Monday, or whatever amused us at the time. We also got these two RIDICULOUS vests from the thrift store (think ugly Xmas sweater, but vests), and wore them at work. Got co-workers to wear them. Made a young miserable looking guy with a hangover wear it for a picture (his friend urged us on).
    I am a total embarrassment to my teenage daughter. Oh well, I gotta be me.
    Thanks Pam. Now I am going to do an actual Zumba video, because exercise should be fun, too!

  8. Bravo! I love having a silly and curious spirit. So much fun. I don’t have silly rituals. Will give that a try. It’s like a deliberate injection of joy. Yippeee!

  9. Here’s my silly story. Last night I was teaching acting class. We use the choir/band room since there is no theater on the campus where I teach. I was talking to the class and passed one of the tympani drums. My voice made it vibrate. I couldn’t resist Oooing into the drum. Then I said, “You’d never know I was 64. I love acting like a kid sometimes.” It was a fun moment. I’ve been serious a lot in my life. Being silly is so much more fun.

    1. Hi Pam,

      you are absolutely right … and to be silly sometimes means to live and to be not boring … by the way if I am allowed to make the compliment: being courageous in selecting those kind of outfits is certainly a contributor (in the eyes of men) to sense increased attractiveness and sexiness in women, especially when they are beyond 17 … or let me say it from a man’s perspective: it is a way to distinguish the living ones with spirit from the “normal” ones which are awaiting life to end … could it be that this fact is felt by women and therefore is also a contributor to that kind of behavior? Of course in traditional role play you “must” refuse this argument … or at least say that being silly could also come without any deeper meaning or intention …

      Anyway: being sometimes silly does not rule out that the person engaged in it has something to say and has character anyway. Which is to be found out by anyone interested after some time of consideration certainly …

      By the way: not only women can be silly … for my part I am planning a bicycle trip across Flores / Indonesia later this year, also not a standard holiday consideration for somebody in the fifties … but for me it is much more attractive than a “All you can eat buffet” three times a day and a 5-star hotel … also a bit silly in most peoples “standardness” …

      Roland / Austria

  10. Reblogged this on and commented:
    I am a firm believer in the transformative power of fun and silliness! Especially in times like these. Joy is infectious: spread some!

  11. Reading your fun escapades inspires me, Pam. I want to do them too. I’m gonna break this programming with a glitter sledgehammer. Thank you for being in the world. You’ve definitely saved at least one life – mine. Much love to you.

  12. The strapless dresses are the best…hope you bought them! Being silly is great fun, good for the soul, body and mind! Thx. You are an inspiration and I’m 75!! ❤️😍💜😘

    Sent from my iPad

  13. Not long after my wife and I were married (1979) I was describing something to her oldest brother with my usual (sometimes over-the-top) sense of humor.

    “Now you’re getting silly,” he said.

    He didn’t mean it as a compliment – and I didn’t take it as one, back then – but should have.

  14. Hi there,
    You two are like me and my friend Kathy we have spent over 25 years having fun and we continue to do so, our photos on facebook are filled with good times, glad theres more people out there like us.

    Loraine Denison

  15. We wear silly hats to play with people. Anything to let the world know we don’t take ourselves seriously. You have it on target here. The more you play the better everything goes. Glad I found this one and it made me smile to see you dressing silly. I still have to work on this a bit. I’m a Virgo. Serious as a heart attack. Everyone kept telling me to behave. ;(

    1. Don’t worry, I’m a Virgo too, and there’s two faces to us, one serious and one silly, and the funniest thing of all is to surprise people who don’t know our silly side by showing it to them the first time : they make a face like “What the… ?” ^__^

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