Friday, November 30, 2007

Just call it, Friendo

Last night I had an odd dream, a dream so real that when I remembered it midafternoon today, I was sure that it hadn't been a dream at all, except for its oddness, which is what led me to search YouTube for a video that might have been tagged with the terms, "No Country For Old Men Bardem Satire" which terms led to nothing at all. Thus, I am left to wonder why it is, and what it meant, that I dreamt that I was watching a video of a comedian, shot in black and sitting at a desk, like a news desk, recapping the entire plot of the Coen brothers' No Country For Old Men by pantomiming Javier Bardem's entire plotline using just his hands: hands strangling, hands shooting a cattle gun, hands on steering wheel driving, hands shooting, hands driving, more shooting, more shooting still, more driving, shooting, driving, driving, shooting, shooting, the end.

Dreams can be so abstruse.

YC

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Oh, the criminality!


But whose practice is it anyway?
YC

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

My most favorite-est teacher

At the CT shala, there is one student who lies face down before the photo of Guruji and steeples his hands over his head towards the photo.

There is another student who sits before the altar for a moment before taking a fist-sized rock from the altar, heating it up in the flame of the altar candle and then cupping it in her hand.

There are people who say of the shala, "This is a sacred space", even though it is, essentially, just a rectangular, sage-green room, carpeted with industrial carpeting, in the middle of a strip mall in the middle of a highway in the middle of Fairfield County, Connecticut.

There are those who stand up whenever the invocation is chanted in the room, even if it is chanted for the next class, even if they chanted it themselves 90 minutes earlier before they practiced.

And when it is time to leave the room, everyone, including me, places hands in prayer and bows to Val. This last one, I do because I assume it makes Val feel good, and in my opinion, she earns that big time.

These are practices that I do not understand. These are practices which leave me feeling alienated and confused. These are among the reasons that I find myself wishing to practice alone in my house at times, for weeks at a time. It's nothing against the CT shala. I think Val is a wonderful teacher and uniquely supportive and communicative. I think Sir and Lori are wonderful teachers, brilliant and intuitive, as well. It's not that or them.

Rather, there have been aspects of being a yoga practitioner in general that have confounded me from the very beginning. Chanting the names of Hindu gods, for example. That really has no place in my life. I love the story of Hanuman, Sita and Ram and find aspects of the story to fill me with admiration and awe, but I would no more invoke their names for inspiration, motivation or worship than I would chant the name of Madeleine, of the Ludwig Bemelmans book, who has long inspired me to feel brave even when feeling very very small ("...The smallest one was Madeleine...She was not afraid of mice; she loved winter snow and ice. To the tiger in the zoo, Madeleine just said 'pooh pooh'....And nobody knew so well, how to frighten Miss Clavell").

I don't want to go to a Kirtan because every time I think about going, I realize that what I really need to be doing is singing with my own peeps, the Jews, which is how it came to pass that I joined the choir at my synagogue. I don't want to see Krishna Das in concert (see Tiff? You're not the only one), and I don't want to read the Bhagavad Gita. I want to see Pat Metheny as many times as I can in this life and I want to get through To Kill A Mockingbird, finally, while still having time to read Us and House Beautiful.

I think very highly of all of the teachers who have actually taught me Ashtanga yoga. But I don't know Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. I have never studied with him. Sure, I have taken his led classes. But he is not my teacher. And frankly, I am not sure that I entirely buy into the system as an efficient gestalt. If I did, there would be no need for yin stretches and prep poses, for which I have always felt the need, or strength training, which many others out there feel is important to their practice. I feel no urge to prostrate to SKPJ's photo, and I removed the photo of myself bowing at his feet, which used to grace this blog's sidebar. It felt silly to have it there. I should be boing at the feet of my oncologist, of my children, of my husband for giving me such a comfortable life and such perfect children, of my former nannies, Ella, Norma, Tereza and Sarah, all of whom have taken such incredibly good care of my children and myself.

Until I bow at the feet of the people who matter in my life, I'm not bowing at anyone else's feet. And if I can't make the time to pray to my own God, then I sure as hell am not making the time to pray to anyone else's.

And as much as I love getting a good adjustment in this or that pose, and getting the professional dropbacks from Val, I feel like I need to practice alone for a little bit. Ultimately, I am my most cherished teacher. Ultimately, no one knows my body and what it needs better than I do. And sometimes, I feel this knowledge acutely, as I learn to bind by myself in Pasasana, while balancing with my heels just "thisclose" to the floor, as I learn to bind Supta K with my ankles already crossed, as I touch my own toes in Kapotasana, albeit with my elbows splayed in the wrong direction.

After practicing alone at home for short periods of time, I usually come back to the shala refreshed. And this is where I am at right now. Feeling a bit disconnected, feeling like I need to be teaching myself for now.

I'm just saying.

YC

Monday, November 26, 2007

Incomprehensible ramblings of a tired mom, yogini and DIY-er

Couldn't make it to practice today because....I couldn't find my car keys. That's a first for me. I was stranded for like half the day because I couldn't find my friggin car keys. Not that I mind practicing myself these days. I get that way sometimes. It's like a cocooning time for me, and usually it seems that when the cocooning time is over, I emerge with some new tricks of some sort. For some, Ashtanga comes easily. For me, it takes doing Pasasana four times on each side several times a week before I will be able to self-bind in it reliably. I'm still scooching around a bit more than I'd like in preparation for Supta K. I figure that someday, I will just wrap myself into it without all the hullaballoo. But not today.

When I practice at home, I often find myself going all the way to Ardha Matsyandrasana. Or at least to Kapotasana. For a sucky backbender, I am finding my hands ever closer to my feet in that one. I wonder if by the time I am "given" Kapo, I will actually be able to do it with assistance. That would be nice. It would take a lot of anxiety out of backbending for me.

My eyes are closing. I have had so little time for blogging lately. So many house projects going on. I got a sewing machine for my birthday, and I've been mending and crafting all the things that have been waiting for me all this time - Brian's quilt, for example, which needed to be folded in half and stitched all the way around in order to create a quilt of half its size. And several pairs of my jeans, of which I had cut the bottoms, leaving frayed edges. Time to smooth out those frayed edges. Then there's the end table I stripped and am in the process of refinishing. Soon, I will be painting my boys' rooms. Today, after I finally found my stupid keys, I took the boys to the hardware store in town and picked out some colors and some corresponding paint samples to throw up on the wall to see how they'll look.

Tomorrow, hopefully, nothing will get in the way of me and Georgetown, Connecticut. Because on Wednesday, I have the dishwasher repairman coming (again, Goddamnit, f-ing Fisher and Paykel dish drawer. NEVER again. NEVER again, I tell you. Next time it will be a Maytag or something like that), and we're also getting our basketball hoop installed at the edge of the driveway. And then on Friday, I have a class trip to an art museum, which, if Martha Stewart had her way, would no longer be able to call themselves by their name. That's all I'm sayin'.

YC

Thursday, November 22, 2007

The husband and I renewed our vows on Thanksgiving!!

Well, not really. But since my parents brought my wedding gown to my house along with the cranberry sauce today, of course I had to try it on. Thank heavens to Betsy for everyone who had to deal with me today that it fit.


Phew.


Okay, well, there is one problem: the bust is sort of standing out about two inches away from my skin. But whatever. I consider myself lucky to have started life rather voluptuously and then gotten a second chance as a small B.


And here, the requisite backbending photo, because Val caught onto my blowing off dropbacks and just waiting for her to assist me and now I have to do them myself first. I did try to tell her that Laksmi and Cranky told me to stop. But she just looked at me like, wha?
Kidding.
YC




Monday, November 19, 2007

Every chair does not have to face the TV.

I just needed to say that.

You know who you are, you who needed to hear it.

....................................................

Practice:

These days, by which I mean, since last Monday, each day, I wake up knowing that it will be a struggle between me and me to make myself practice. Some days, I get up, get dressed for practice, and then, after some internal debate decide that I don't feel like driving to the shala after all. On those days, at some point, if I am very persuasive, I am able o force myself to practice at home. I do hope this mood passes soon. Perhaps it will pass when my body is less sore from the backbending work I'm doing. But this is really when I know that I am engaging in a discipline. I tell myself that I have to practice, even if it sucks, even if I hate it, because it's just practice. I tell myself that even if it sucks, tomorrow might not suck, and there's always tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow, to paraphrase William Faulkner.

Backbends:

Surprisingly, or maybe not surprisingly to those who have struggled with motivation issues while delving into Second Series, even as my motivation crumbles, my backbends are improving. I mean SERIOUSLY improving. Or at least it seemed that way today. Banner day today, really. Today, two things happened that rocked my backbendng world.

Thing One was that I discovered the internal rotation of my arms in Urdhva Dhanurasana. I know, it's like, duh, hello, that's what you're supposed to be doing. But the thing is, I have never been able to connect with any sort of internal arm rotation while pressing up into UD, unless I have a belt strapped around my triceps. But today, as I pressed up, I pretended the belt was there, and I felt my chest lifting higher, and my wrists not crying out in pain. Muscles engaged. Locked and loaded.

Now, to feel my legs. You can no more force yourself to feel your legs when you can't feel your legs than you can force yourself to relax by saying, "Just relax." But I know that someday I will feel my legs. I think. I told myself today that I am going to give it at least five years before I get frustrated. Hmmm.....wonder if I can stick to that.

Thing Two was that in assisted dropbacks, Val did not really drop me back or lift me up at all. She merely put her hands on my hipbones and pressed my feet into the floor. It was the WILDEST sensation. Apparently, I need to wear cement shoes in order to drop back and stand up. Or, um....feel my legs maybe?

Maybe I will actully wake up wanting to go to practice, just to get that sensation again of having my feet firmly planted on the ground and using them as an anchor to float back and stand up. Maybe.

Other practices:

That would be choir practice. Yes, I have joined the choir at my place of worship. I'd been thinking about going to kirtan, and then I realized that if I can sing in a community, then I really should sing with the Jews. Because I actuallyam a Jew. Whereas, I am not Hindu or Indian. Shit, I mean, if I chant the invocation on a daily basis, shouldn't I be able to sing Mi Chamocha once in a while?

I (secretly) refer to the choir as the Mommy Minion, since all of the members of the choir, pretty much, are moms. It's not like the temple(s) we belonged to in the city, where there was such a wide age range within the congregation. Much of our congregation is under the age of 60, and in fact, much of the congregation is actually under the age of 20. Like my kids, for instance. And everyone else's sets of two, three and four kids.

Isn't it ironic, dontcha think, that my first choir performance is for tomorrow night's Ecumenical Service with the Armonk Methodist Church? We're singing with their choir. They are not a Mommy Minion. They're kind of oldish and blue-hairish. But they have lovely soprano voices. My voice, which I have neglected for the past15 or so years, has dropped to a high alto. That's fine. I don't mind singing the harmony line.

I think my batteries are about to go, and I mean that both literally and figuratively. I'm on my laptop in bed. And it's time to turn out the light.

Night!

YC

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Taking rest

By popular demand, by which I mean by the requiest of one reader, I am posting these photos I took this rainy November morning, of the "creepy graveyard" that overlooks the Village Green pictured in yesterday's post. The oldest grave marker here is from 1700, which means it (probably) holds the remains of someone born in the 1600's. I find that totally cool, not creepy. But some will find it creepy, and I understand that, especially when you consider that more than half of the stones are tiny tiny tiny, bearing only initials, indicative of those who died in infancy, often without having been named.

Even more creepy: When I tried to take a photo facing the Village Green, my camera turned off. I tried again. And again. Finally, I gave up, assuming my camera's battery had died. When I got back to my car, my camera was in perfect working order, battery alive and well.......who did not want their photo taken is the question......















YC

Better practice through not giving a shit

Scuse my language.

I don't swear all that much, so when I do, hopefully it has impact.

I have been pretty miserable with my practice lately. It's longer than I feel is ideal (yes, a necessary evil for moving forward into Second, so I am not feeling like I have a right to complain, but still, I'm complaining, or rather, whining). My updogs hurt. And now, a new soreness has devloped - one that have never experienced: I feel my psoas all the way from front to back (they wrap around from front to back). This makes both Parsvakonasanas and Mari C painful along the sides of the rear of my lower torso. Basically, it's the place alongside the place where your jeans pockets sit. It's tight, and it's sore, and it makes twisting and lengthening sideways feel like hell. Oh, and after a deep squat, like Mari C, if I so much as TOUCH the front of my hips - the groins, if you will - it's like AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! And not in a good way. Oni poked me in my right groin crease to see what I was talking about, and I practicially jumped out of my skin.

So, I have decided to JUST BREATHE.

Just breathe. Just go to class and breathe. Do my practice, try to remain unattached to the soreness and the fact that I am making backward progress (regress) in poses that have been easy for me for a long time as I learn to open my front body. And just breathe.

And it worked today. I did my practice, and now I don't have to regret NOT doing my practice. Or skimping on my practice. Or being miserable through my practice.

This won't work everyday. But it's a good thing to work on for me. To be a bit LESS passionate about my postures. To work on less things at once. To just do my damn practice.

I will say one positive thing: Bhekasana is amazing when assisted. AMAZING. And one more thing: NOT doing my own dropbacks is quite liberating. Thanks guys. I focus on stretching my hip flexors now, straightening my legs, and opening things up, rather than thinking to myself the whole time, "How high is my arch? What does this look like? How close are my hands to my feet?" It's like, who cares? I need to open my front and learn to curve my spine. That's all.

Tomorrow is Primary Only day. I never thought I would be saying....THANK GOD.

YC

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Attention fans of Pokemon Master




The Pokemon Master publishes answers for the patiently waiting fans.

The Pokemon Master would like to know if anyone has a Shaymin? And whom do you prefer: Darkrya (left) or Shaymin (right)?

YC

Quaint, Disturbing, Perturbing



I noticed this sign on the way home from practice, and since I carry my trusty Cybershot with me at all times now (what with my propensity for collecting parking tickets, two at a time, totally unjustly), I had to get out and take a shot. How much I wish that I could have seen the Village Green when there cattle, horses and swine grazing there. 1681 for godssakes!! I mean, that is so long ago that human beings have probably EVOLVED in that time. Not all human beings, of course.


Which reminds me, I couldn't sleep last night because I was so disturbed by this week's episode of Nip/Tuck. I've been watching it on and off for a couple of seasons now because (a) it's about plastic surgery, in which I have a vested interest and intend to for the rest of my proudl superficial life and (b) Christian Troy and Sean McNamara are the most interesting "buddies" I have ever seen in any media. They're one part rivalrous brothers (who does Julia REALLY love?), one part homosexual lovers (Matt has two daddies) and one part business partners (you'd have to have witnessed them clefting the chin of a plastic-sugery addict to understand the synergy they share, which is nothing if not choreographed poetry). Sean's ex-wife, Julia, has children with both Sean and Christian, loves them both, and currently wants neither since she has fallen in love with a woman. Julia has also fallen in love with a dwarf. Not that there's anything wrong with that.


Last night's episode was incredibly entertaining, no doubt. But it was also incredibly disturbing, in a Brazil (the movie) kind of way. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT. SPOILER ALERT.

When the otherwise pristine hot tub begins to bleed brown, it's startling for a moment, and then it is unbearably horrifying. Shit in a hot tub. Shitting in a hot tub. With a new lover. It's too awful. And later, Christian in rivalrous brother/jealous lover mode, pokes fun at Sean for dating a "shitter". It's so cringeworthy, I couldn't stop thinking about it. Then there were the lesser cringeworthy moments, but cringeworthy nonetheless: the hymen-o-plasty patient with the hots for Sean who also happens to be Julia's new lover's daughter, Sean's fantasies about her during sex with "the shitter", after he couldn't get it up sans fantasy. The disturbingly uncomfortable lunch between Sean and Christian's anesthesiologist/close friend and Julia with her new lover. When Roma Maffia pushed her plate away, I understood. I felt like throwing up too. Finally, the strung out Matt, eyeing Sean's wallet. It was so painfuly obvious that he was drugging it up. How could Sean not have seen this? Especially after his speech to Julia's lover about setting better boundaries for her own daughter.


So, I had insomnia last night. Could it have been that I watched this powerfully dramatic show on the GIANT FLAT SCREEN FROM HELL???? I just thought of that! Oh no! No, JLafitte, there will be no pull-down screen. I might have to throw a rock through my flat screen and put an end to my media misery altogether.


Oh, and here, for your poking-fun-of-my-decor pleasure, is the latest change to the Family Room. Why didn't any of you think of THIS?


Not that it solves the myriad of problems with this cavernous, flat-screen-tv-driven space. But that myriad of problems isn't going to be solved so soon anyway, seeing as He Who Shall Not Be Named has cut me off at the knees, I mean, charge card, forbidding me from buying any new furniture, nay, any new anything, for the family room. Apparently, he wants to be in charge of the decor. So, expect much more in the way of black iron from places where you assemble the furniture in this room's future. :(

YC

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Oh, and this room needs help now too.



This is the room where I usually film my glorious backbending. When you've seen it in the past, it has been unpainted, with electrical plates hanging off the walls.
Well, we finally finished the bookshelves and the painting (it's the color of Brie, with white trim, if you can't see from the photos). Yesterday, the sectional arrived, and as you can see, it is contemporary. Also arriving yesterday were the flat screen tv and the curio in the corner. There is no rug yet, and I dread how expensive it is going to be to buy one that is big enough for the sofa-to-tv area - probably at least 9 by 11 feet.
And then there is the entire space between the kitchen ad tv room to fill. I'm thinking two club chairs and a table in between, facing the sliding glass doors that have a really pretty view of the back yard. Soooooooozin? Yoohoo....a little help?
YC

Dear Val,



Please excuse YC's absence from practice today. And yesterday. And, cough, Sunday. On Sunday, she did a home practice. On Monday, there was no school, and she had to take Older Son of YC to the orthodontist, where he got his Palate Expander, and then she spent the rest of the day moving furniture, opening and unpacking boxes of books and other media. Today, she was just really, really tired.
From,
YC's Conscience

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Today's Backbending Entry

videoSo, I think the backbending is improving steadily. But the standup does NOT reflect it. In fact, it sucks badly. But in the interest of time, and humility, I felt that I needed to publish today's outtake. OK, they were all outtakes. So, if I was going to publish anything for your perusal and advice, dear reader(s) (!), it was going to be the best of the worst, or nothing at all. I settled for the former. Here it is. Go ahead, laugh. But nicely. Or I will continue to publish only the stuff that looks good (in my opinion).

YC

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Laksmi, Interior Designer

She was right. Symmetry is better.

YC

Friday, November 09, 2007

Introducing: The Pokemon Master

Well, there's a new blogger in town. And his mom couldn't be more kvelling.

YC

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Living Room, with Mutt




I hung these swags, and I am damn proud of my handiwork. I am thinking of handing the husband a bill for all the work I've done around here. Have I mentioned that before? Pardon me if I am being repetitive, repetitive. I'm showing this in two photos because I couldn't fit all three windows in one frame with the sofa on the other side of the room.

Practice is definitely suffering a bit from all of my exertions. But more about my practice later. Right now I have to call the cable company and get them to take off of my bill about 10 porno movies that no one ordered or watched or would have had time to order or watch. Jeez.

YC

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Salabasana and Bhekasana

Today was a particularly sucky practice. VERY stiff. VERY distracted. I moved very slowly and very laboriously through Half Primary when Val told me to move, just for today, to my Second Series poses. She wanted to teach me Salabasana and Bhekasana before she left early for the day - it was her son's birthday, and the shala was pretty much empty except for those of us who either are not from Connecticut or don't have kids (it was a school holiday in CT, for election day).

Apart from getting two new poses which much, much, much better prepare me for Urdhva Dhanurasana, it was an interesting day at the shala. As I said, it was very empty. And Val spent time talking to several of us about our practices. I've seen her do this before - sit down and talk to students about what's going on with their practice. And she did it with me once before when she asked if it would be okay to teach me Second Series even though Guy hadn't started me on it yet.

Me, she talked to about getting in my own way by trying too hard. She's noticed what I've been doing with holding all of my updogs, and it's making my practice about two hours long, and it's exhausting me. Counterproductive. Pick a few updogs to hold, she advised, and don't pick them in advance. Just let it unfold. It's okay with her to use some R&D where it's needed, but the idea is to be unattached to the R&D - to recognize when it is no longer needed and then let it go. Right now, I need that R&D, just not as much.

Hey, I'm nothing if not intense. I wouldn't be me if I weren't intense about something at all times. I'm not here to change that. My goal is to recognize it and work with it more effectively.

Other than that, I am trying to have no goal. I don't want to say, "I want my knees to be at a whatever whatever angle when I'm in a backbend, by whatever whatever date." I just want to keep practicing and keep enjoying my practice. And not exhaust myself by holding every updog for three to five breaths. It's just TOO MUCH!

I was tempted to come home today and do the postures I missed. But I stopped myself, keeping myself busy hanging drapes in the living room, doing some sewing (I am getting a sewing machine for my birthday! YAY!) and otherwise puttering around the house with my power tools until it was time to pick the kids up from their activities.

I wonder why I was so stiff today. And by stiff, I don't mean unable to do the postures. I mean able to do them but really not feeling any "ease" in them. All effort, no ease = stiff, at least to me. Of course, I never got to even try Supta Kurmasana today, so who knows? Maybe today would have been the day I couldn't bind it. If ever there were a day for that, it would have been today.

Man, I feel scattered. Maybe it's all the backbending. DEFINITELY, I am hyper as all hell. Hence, the house fixer-upping. But scattered too. Hmmmm...maybe it's because I forgot to do finishing. I just forward bended and then the few of us who were left in the room started chatting and showboating. A little Urdvha Kukutasana, a little Bakasana B. And my shala-friend, Mel, was ticking and tocking and tocking and ticking. She had never tried it before. But her boyfriend and I goaded her into it, and she was a natural (no, really, she was a gymnast in her younger days and went to the Junior Olympics at one point, whatever that is). She's like 46, but she looks about 30. She makes me laugh, which is always good.

But no finishing postures. Hmmmm.....not good. Maybe I need to do some quiet yoga before I go to bed tonight.

But first, I have to go the playground and pick up Adam's backpack, which he accidentally on purpose left there. Come on, Adam! If you want to blow off homework, there are ways that are easier on your mom....

YC

The Yoga Chickie-amas

1. Don't shit where you eat.

2. Don't shag where you eat.

3. Don't do it to someone if you don't want it done to you.

4. Don't expect anyone to be different to you than they are to anyone else.

5. Don't tell your friends what to do.

6. Do as I say, not as I do.

YC

Monday, November 05, 2007

DIY, again

So, this is how I spent my afternoon before the kids came home from school. I hung drapes, using my power drill, a level, a studfinder and spackle. I'm proud of my handiwork. I also hung the photos pictured. There are six others hung around the room by the same photographer, all hung by me.

Of course, my work is completely unappreciated by "anyone" other than the workmen who come to the house and ask me how come I don't worry about ruining my manicure like all the other ladies in town. I don't want to show them my nails, hideous as they are. Instead, I just laugh it off.

Speaking of DIY, my backbends are now an official work in progress. I don't think I have ever worked this hard in Ashtanga. Every freakin' updog is a project. But the results are tangible. I can't believe I ignored my updogs for so long, my shoulders shrugged up around my jawbone, the pinchy feeling pervasive in my lower back. Well, better late than never.

And Carl, I am not sure if you were making a short-joke with those comments about the phone books. If so, here's a big Bronx cheer for you: phhhbbbbbbbbbhhhhhhtttttt.


YC

Sunday, November 04, 2007

How it is today

I'm doing everything ya'all say to do. But it's a slow road. I've got the ball, the Yin Yoga book (which I got from Tova's 8 Limbs store), I'm stretching cold in order to stretch fascia rather than muscle, I'm holding Urdhva D's for as long as I can (um, about 6 breaths, maybe?), I'm making each and every updog count....I don't know if this video shows it, but I feel a little different even if it doesn't show on the outside. I have a bit more ease in my updogs and in pressing up to UD, and there's less dread. The yoga starts from the inside anyway, no?

YC

Guest Blogger: "Mammos? We don't need no stinkin mammos."



This letter comes from Mr. Abdul-Hasan Omar Loman Elad, pictured at left.

Dear Yoga Chickie,

It has come to my attention that you're getting all "hey, go get a mammogram" and all "Yeah, early detection can equal preventon", and I just want to say to you, with all due respect, "Fuck you, you stupid American bitch."

One of my wives tried to get one of those breast-squashing things done to her, and I had her dragged out of the office and banished to a cave for one month. And I had good reason, Ms. Chickie. Let's not even talk about the fact that the breast-crushing doctor was a man, which is one hundred percent unacceptable. Let's just move along to the fact that another one of my wives got "this disease", which I will not even dignify with a name, in her breast, and this is because she defied me by getting a mammogram. I mean, you don't get a mammogram, you don't get this disease, obviously. Instead, you live with your lumps and you die instead in service to God, like in a suicide bombing, or some such. Something dignified. Unlike this disease.

So, this wife of mine, she gets this lump in her breast, and it keeps getting bigger and bigger, probably because she ignored my command to cover it up with gauze and herbal salves. When it seemed to be almost popping through the skin (see below for an example of what this looks like; this is NOT my wife's breast, I repeat NOT my wife in the photo), this wife of mine defied me and went to a secret male doctor who gave her surgery. Which is also why she died. Because no male doctor should see my wife's breast. And more importantly, no one should open up cancer to the air. What are these doctors thinking, Yoga Chickie?

No wife of mine is going to go get early detection so that she can have some crazy-assed surgery that is only going to make the cancer grow.

I know, I know, you're going to say that it wasn't the surgery that made the cancer grow, but with all due respect, I have this to say to you, "Fuck you, you stupid Jewish American peasant."

And listen: Don't you all be be sending that Mr. Doublemint Bush's wife to my house to have her talking crazy to the women of my country about early detection when you know it is a Big Lie. Early detection means taking away the ladies' spirit. They know they will die, and they ruin their husbands lives while doing so. I say let them just cover up their sickness with their gauze, and hide the smell of decaying flesh with salves, and leave us alone about it.

We need our governmnt funds for God's war. Not for some pretend war against a disease that has no cure. And everyone with a brain knows that you can't get cured from this disease. It is a death sentence, this disease. So just accept it, and go be with God, and stop bothering your husbands about it, because we have more important battles to wage.

Oh, yes, I know, you say that women who get their breast disease detected early can survive. That something like 90 percent of women who get their breast disease detected early DO survive it. Again, stop the BIG LIES. You Americans with your big money for big medicine need to stop lying and stop getting my ladies involved in the Big Lies. We need our money for real problems, like getting rid of the bad people who do not believe in our God.

Just SHUT UP already, Yoga Chickie.

Love,

Mr. A-H.O.L.E


P.S. I voted that you are annoying, and that I am not.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Salvage Haiku Meme!


Ode to an Ostrich Ass

Well, I just don't think
I have or will have cancer.
Skewer my ostrich ass
.



- by YC with inspiration from Laksmi


This "Salvage Haiku" came from
Laksmi's blog, specifically today's entry. I think this calls for a meme. Go forth and pick someone else's blog, lift 17 syllables and put it in 5/7/5 format. Voila! Salvage Haiku!

You can think of this as a metaphor for karma - what goes around, goes around and around and around, endlessly. Or, for the notion of "ashes to ashes". Or you could think of it as the Greening of the Blogosphere: Waste Nothing!

Go forth and salvage some poetry.

YC

Thursday, November 01, 2007

I am Elastigirl.



















This is my son, The Ninja Warrior.














And this is Thanksgiving Dinner, who was crossing the street as we were driving to school this morning. TD was in high diva mode, clucking irritably, and refusing to clear the way for our SUV and the one parked on the other side of the road, waiting for clearance. I can understand why TD is feeling a bit pissy this time of year. But still.


YC

FIRST TIME FOR DROPPING BACK WITHOUT LIFTING HEELS!!

I did it once by myself, and then I managed it again during assisted dropbacks, which is more difficult than it sounds.

This is major for me, and owes itself to workng with straightening my legs in Urdhva D (thanks Vanessa-not-my-sister) and to stretching the hell out of my really-really-short psoas (thanks Tova). And maybe Laksmi is working with her Yoga Chickie Barbie. I don't know. Could be that too.

Practice is TOUGH now. I am working hard on grounding. Grounding my feet, grounding my hands. You would think that gravity would be helpful. Yet everything about me wants to fly up, up, up. My heels don't want to stick to the floor when they should. My hands don't want to stick to the floor when they should. Every updog is it's own asana, as far as I am concerned. I am working every single one of them. By the end of my Primary Plus Two sequence, I am feeling no pain in my psoas or lower back.

People talk about how tight hamstrings bring about lower back pain. Well, I'm here to tell you that tight front-hips will make the lower back pinch as well. If the lower back wants to flex into an arch, and the front hips act like a brick wall, then the lower back is going to hurt as it slams into that brick wall. I'm trying to soften the blow. It's working. But it's hard work. Am I up to the task? I don't know. I guess so. But I don't know. I was getting used to a nice, relaxing practice that didn't require me to push myself too hard in anything. Of course, I was ignoring backbends. Denying their existence. Not caring that my updogs were not much more bendy than a really bad caturanga.

Anyway, it's hard. And it's tiring. But I saw instant results today. What happens tomorrow when I don't? I hope the motivation stays high. I want to have a backbend. I don't want to be the girl with no backbend.

YC

Copyright 2005-2007 Lauren Cahn, all rights reserved. Photos appearing on this blog may be subject to third party copyright ownership. You are free to link to this blog and portions hereof, but the use of any direct content requires the prior written consent of the author.

About Me

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Northern Westchester, New York, United States
I live by a duck pond. I used to live by the East River. I don't work. I used to work a lot. Now, not so much. I used to teach a lot of yoga. Now not so much. I still practice a lot of yoga though. A LOT. I love my kids, being outdoors, taking photos, reading magazines, writing and stirring the pot. Enjoy responsibly.

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Thanks for reading Yoga Chickie!