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Thursday, November 24, 2011

I See A Little Silhouette of a Man...

There are many things that constitute a yoga practice, and not all of them involve sweaty contortions.

Some of the things that constitute a yoga practice fall, as we say, off the mat.

Shall we consider Tuesday’s practice?

I don’t know if you are aware of this, but Minnesota can be a notoriously dry place. My hair, of course, having been certified a competent and reliable detector of humidity by the National Weather Service, warned me of this early Tuesday morning by flinging itself out in all directions in a crackling, static-charge display of wanton disrespect, screaming nonsense at passers-by: “Microwaveable meals are both quick and nutritious! Properly trained, your butt will expand to the size of the largest chair available!”

I had the warning. Yet I proceeded.

As a person whose train of thought enjoys spinning first this way, then that, yoga is what keeps me from hurling office chairs out of windows. Yoga is my sanctuary, a place of focused breathing and useful for getting as close to calm, pretty brain waves as possible.

It was with this in mind that I went to yoga, dropped two mats (one for me, one for Amy) only to return, 15 minutes later, to find that both mats had been moved and that another had been wedged between them.

These things happen in a crowded room.

But the mat between our mats left less than three inches on either side; and standing in the center of this mat, arms swinging wildly despite the 100-degree temperature of the room, was Jeff.

Have you met Jeff? He’s quite attractive in a Cesar Milan sort of way.

He also stands when others sit; tries to make eye contact, particularly when you are upside down; and smells like a cross between a hot wool blanket and, for some reason, salted sunflower seeds.

Frankly, I've smelled worse.

He is less than three inches from me. The walls are running wet with the tropics-imitating humidity of a room of 70 sweating people, and he’s trying to make eye contact.

And the groaning! Have I mentioned the groaning yet?

“Augh,” he moans as we hold plank position, our arms trembling, our monkey minds urging us to give up. “Auuuuuuuuuugh,” he groans.

“Ugh. Ugh. Ugh,” he grunts during boat pose.

We are in headstand when he starts to growl, and my mind starts to wail. “Ack! He’s three inches away and he’s growling! Sit down! Stop trying! Give up! It’s too hot! Why don’t you give up and concentrate on how agitated you are becoming?”

I do not, of course, listen to the chattering of my brain but close my eyes. My mind, against my will, forms a picture of a mostly-hairless biped throwing feces at my attempts to better myself.

I refuse to acknowledge my brain.

Due to the closeness of the mats, by the time class is over he has hit me twice with his arms, once with his feet, and has grunted his way – at least in my mind – through Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody.

And so it goes.

My quest to defeat my monkey mind remains.

32 comments:

Friko said...

Well, what did you do for revenge?

There were two of you, I take it, either side of Grunter and you didn't manage to get him into a very awkward position or two? The next time you mention him I want to read about his cries of agony, disguised as extra energetic yoga positional noise emissions. If he doesn't come out of it without at least one shiner and one bruised shin I consider you, Pearl, personally responsible and a wimp to boot.

Symdaddy said...

... Scaramouch, Scaramouch can you do the fandango? Thunderbolt & lightfoot ... or something or other, any ol' how.

Ah Pearlchen, I do sympathise with you. Your unfortunate yoga session so does so put me in mind of a bus trip (yes! Shock! I went on a bus!) I took this very morn.

Crammed, as we were like the proverbial, sardines, the bus was awash with with an oodleplex of aroma's ranging from feet, through sweaty armpits to a smell that could only have been attributed to an to an apparently unsuccessful bottom wipe.

However, at the end of it all (35 minute trip) I remained bruise free. My sinus's have since taken legal action against me for forcing them onto the bus in the first place.

Thank you for the entertainment ... now, it's back to work! Think of me at 9pm (UK time) as I struggle on my rounds.

haphazardlife said...

One word: Ewwwwwwwwwww

jenny_o said...

70 sweating grunting people in a room is a lot of people; I'd need three hours in a room by myself just to get over that!

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

Oh the horror.....

Gigi said...

Just as I was contemplating the possibility of taking up yoga - too soothe the stresses of everyday life - this post pops up and reminds me that THAT type of behavior would stress me out even more. I'm better off sitting on the couch with the laptop and a glass of wine.

Happy Thanksgiving, Pearl!

R. Jacob said...

I have done yoga. Women are much better at it then men and look better doing the poses too. The inner you screaming no no no no...we all have it don't we.

mapstew said...

Did you know that today is the 20th anniversary of the passing of our dear Sir Freddie (of Mercury)? :¬)

xxx

Kipp said...

Msybe Jeff thought it was a Yoda class and he was Chewbacca. ;)
Eeeeelllluuuugggaaaa!!
Princess Lea (with the humidity hair) on one side and Queen Andromatta(?) (Natalie Portman) on the other.

Eva Gallant said...

I don't think yoga would be fun from the sound of this!

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

It sounds like an ordeal, Pearl! Grunting? Making eye contact? A 100 degree room with 70 sweating people?? OMG! How could you not have "monkey mind"?! I took a yoga class -- the non-tropical heat variety -- when I was still working at UCLA and it was the hardest thing I have ever done! I'm trying to get up the nerve to try another yoga class here, but don't think I'm quite up for it yet.

mrwriteon said...

Ah, the old proximity thing. I understand. All about boundaries. Used to get similar feelings when I took tai-chi in a room that was too small.

Anyway Happy Thanksgiving to you, dear friend.

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

If you ever figure out how to control your 'monkey mind' let me know. All mine does is leave the door open so more of his buddies can infest the nest. And THIS is what I traded the ability to climb trees with only my feet for? Monkey Kal want do-over.

Daisy said...

Now MY monkey mind is jumping about!!

Bossy Betty said...

Me likes your monkey mind.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, Pearl!

The Elephant's Child said...

At least he didn't add dripping perspiration on you to the list of his sins.

Shelly said...

I think someone trying to make eye contact with a person in the midst of strenous exertion in exercise class is almost as invasive as a peeping tom in the dressing room. Leave me alone in my agony- don't draw me into yours- is my credo.

Too bad you can't put a little booby trap in your mat that will splatter the person who tries to move it with a facefull of red paint...

Leenie said...

This almost makes me want to search out a real yoga class instead of my private and ne er changing video seasions ALMOST

Belle said...

It is weird how some people are oblivious to the fact they are annoying. He put the mat BETWEEN yours. I guess he is in like with one of you.

Susan in the Boonies said...

I think there are instances in life, where Monkey Mind NEEDS to triumph over rational thought.

This really could be one of those instances.

klahanie said...

Greetings human named Pearl,
Yes, tis I, Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet star! I have taken over my alleged human's keyboard to grace you with one of my pawesome comments.
Having perused your article, I now know why my human gave up on Yoga classes....and another one bites the dust.....Pawsitive wishes and doggy kisses, your way, Penny xx

Andrea said...

No namaste to that guy! This makes my first yoga experience with the lady who farted EVERY time she moved seem relaxing. I know the laughter between my friend and I when the class finally ended was certainly cleansing!

Douglas said...

I'd just take up throwing those chairs out the windows.

mystic29 said...

Two monkeys are sitting in a bath.
First monkey says "Oooh aaah,Oooh Oooh Aaah!"
Second monkey turn to him and says "Well, put some cold water in then..."
Kymbo
http://tempo11.blogspot.com/

(yeah I know it has nothing to do with your post, your monkey comparisons reminded me...thats all.)

Roses said...

Funnily enough, you're not tempting me to seek out a yoga class nearby.

River said...

Is there any chance your teacher/trainer would agree to moving the class to a new location? Perhaps the local football oval where there is much more room?

ashok said...

OMG!!!

Jinksy said...

I'm so glad I'm a hermit...♥

Hospitable Scots Bachelor said...

and this illustrates why I am thinking of becoming a full time slob

the walking man said...

Ha ha ha ha what you seek is within and is not found through any body posture or olfactory observation. Try just letting your spirit be silent.

Dawn @Lighten Up! said...

Jeff. He wants you. HAWT!

vanilla said...

Aaargh! And you pay to do this? And get up early? Then I read "particularly when you are upside down and smell like a cross between a hot wool blanket..." No, that is not exactly what you wrote, but it is what I read.