You guys, I know there is funeral in Charleston today, and my president made me so proud that he was there representing us. But as I am solemn, I am also so darn HAPPY that we have had positive news for 2 days in a row. Racist symbols coming down, ACA is not repealed, and my gay family members, and my gay friends who truth be told I love more than my gay family members, have full rights. Happy rest day & Namaste.
I practiced at home today because every third Friday of the month at my shala there is what is called introduction to second series instead of led primary. I usually bow out when I remember that it is that Friday and at some point even started marking it on my calendar until my teacher pointed out that it was going to feel like that when the time came to start second anyway so why delay the inevitable? Good point right? So I stopped marking it but I still sometimes ditch it when I happen to remember. There is however a group sitting practice before asana practice on Fridays and I love that so sometimes I bite the bullet and go just to have that time. Not today though. I have cried and felt strong anger on 3rd Fridays for no reason and I have not burned my sadness or my anger about our collective response to the domestic attack on our fellow human beings.
I live in the town where Anne Coulter grew up and became who she is. It is also where Glenn Beck chose to live before he left the East coast after his meltdown. Many years ago my mother in law drove her son in law who is a black man to see the Phillip Johnson Glass House from the road, and the police pulled up while they were standing by the road just looking at it because neighbors had called. BUT there is always light where there’s darkness or else how could we know it’s dark right? I live in the part of town where the servants, grocers, and bricklayers of the big estates used to live at the turn of the 19th century. Close to the railroad station where now all the restaurant workers and the cleaning ladies show up every morning to be picked up in the gigantic Escalades, Tahoes, and suburbans to clean the already clean gourmet kitchens because the restaurant workers are preparing the meals that those same SUVs will pick up later that day. My next door neighbors until very recently were a man called Charlie Guilliam and his wife Hattie. both from North Carolina. He joined the army to escape a rural racist environment and became one of General Patton’s Drivers. He drove the General’s Vehicle during the parade for the liberation of Paris. His landlord who originally owned his and my house, refused to sell him the house even though he offered cash and had to wait until the man died and his wife relented. Hattie tried to teach me how to grow vegetables and figured out that it was just easier to give me her tomatoes. Before she retired she worked for family in Greenwich and cooked like the hotel chefs of the old days did. The adult children of that family cried like babies at her funeral. Charlie was the janitor at my daughter’s elementary school. And like any teacher will tell you. they see, hear,and know more about the state of the school than the superintendent. He and Ray shared a beer or two on weekends and he would fill us in on what was really going on but with a gentleman’s prudence and good careful manners. He also told us something that may prevent me from ever selling this house. My house was a safe house for people active in the black liberation movement of the 1960’s and 70’s and he showed us a photo of Angela Davis standing in my kitchen with the young tenants of this house at the time. They never had children and left the house to their church congregation which is a tiny Baptist congregation that is one block away from our street. There is a black Baptist church smack in the middle of lily white New Canaan, and The pastor and his wife our now our neighbors. We are not so close because they have to travel to more than one congregation, but I walked over yesterday and gave Candace a blubbering hug only imagining what it must feel to be the wife of a black minister on that day. Let’s find pockets of light, find something torch-like that lights up, take it, and walk towards the places that have none.
I’m upset because I’m not upset. Did you get that? Here is one of the perks about being a regular at a restaurant or a bar, or a cafe. (being vague on purpose here). You see a server/owner/bartender ( again on purpose) outside our regular environment and they confide that they overheard someone; a friend, a family member, a martian, talking trash about you!! I was horrified and embarrassed for about six seconds,and then realized I don’t GAF. This might sound like good news, but to me it really means that I do not have close bonds with people with whom I should really have tight bonds even if they might hurt me. I am going to work on that. I am also working on not feeling gleeful that I know that they were throwing shade at me and I can be sweet when I see them really really soon, and feel superior. Anyway, baking cake and looking forward to eating it. Also opening a bottle of icy cold Gewurtztraminer (Ga voortz traminer- you’re welcome) before Ray comes home. Have a great Friday rest day and may you not need dramamine.
In our tradition we hear do your practice and all is coming which is so very true. We also hear you need to engage your bandhas and you have to be careful not to hurt your shoulders and sometimes you will hear that pilates or free weights will give you additional support in achieving this. For many years I felt both disloyal and mild lazy relief if I considered doing supplemental stuff outside the practice. My rationale was: if there were things that helped improve my strength would they be not part of instruction and included in the series? So lets say, that if you are average weight, average height, and on the young side of 40 when you begin, maybe primary is enough. If you have an unnecessarily large C section scar intersecting with a necessary but very long hysterectomy scar, started ashtanga at 50, and are kind of both fearful and lazy, you are going to need the type of assistance provided here
Sometimes I forget Kino is just 3 years older than my own kid. I mention this because good instruction skills are frequently innate, like in this case. I truly believe that her communication skills would translate into teaching you how to build a viking ship or make paella. Age is not a variable in being a master teacher.
Caitlin Jenner looks absolutely Gorgeous. Caitlin with a C NOT a K, hahahhaha. At first I thought wow that Jessica Lange looks hot as a brunette!
Those hoodlums over at FIFA are going to prevent me from watching Lionel Messi do more of what he does for 2018. I only watch big deal championships but I caught the Copa del Rey final yesterday and wow. I really resent Sepp Blatter right now.
So fed up with reading yoga critiques as a the sole writing topic to maintain a web presence. Praise something once in a while for goodness sake.
Happy to notice that I choose vegan/vegetarian a lot more often without having to badger myself with ethical and health invective. I am actually preferring it right when I was ready to give up hope of it ever happening without waging a fierce battle with myself. All the yoga, not just the asana takes time to refine and improve.
I love all my young friends and am very flattered that I still get invited to wedding showers, bachelorette parties, and weddings, but after this July, I am done. I am saving them and myself some money. I can’t go because I don’t want to.
I haven’t gone to India yet, and I am already scheming how to return in January with some mates.
Kind of bummed after reading about the air quality in New Delhi. Before that my only concern was soiling my pants, but someone who is a big deal at the CDC had told my daughter and her staff in Nepal that the solution was a can or bottle of Coca-Cola. Drink half before you eat your meal and the other half after you are done. Coke cleans rust from carburetors after all. That does not mean you can drink the water, and I am not your MD.
Oh, and now I am terrified of winning that Inn in Maine contest that I entered next week because Ray accepted the job of his dreams, so no way he is heading to the boonies with me.
There is a dry board at the entrance of our shala where there is always an inspirational quote or passage from a yoga text or another book containing Dharma. Today’s quote was from the Gita highlighting action without concern for results, so I went in vowing to not fret about the end result of each asana and just do. Intentions got highjacked as the often do and I ended up noticing/listing/enumerating every single tick corresponding to every asana which I have accumulated through the years. Here in no particular order but definitely abridged and abbreviated:
-rock back and forth in chaturanga to find the base before lowering.
-reach up before extending my arm over in UPP A.
-walk my feet back in a bit after rising up from prasarita D so I won’t topple and I can walk myself back to the front of the mat.
– wipe snot and sweat from my nose before attempting Ardha Baddha P. (every day with out fail)
-widen my stance to accommodate my rear size in warrior poses.
-squeeze my knees together with my hands before reaching up to Utkatasana
-rearrange my belly fat so I can fit my heel and hopefully bind in Ardha Baddha PP.
-hold my left thigh so it does not go forward again in Janu B.
-holding my legs in the 3rd Navasana then let go again for the last two.
Too many to count from here to closing.
-having to look up at the ceiling first to get into Padmasana.
Awareness is the first step to change they say.
It seems that we start bawling “it’s not okay!” the moment we exit the womb, but fortunately some of us will bump into asana or some pointers like this one at one time or another.