Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ch'i Whiz, Another Attempt At Yoga

Vacations are only successful if you break routines and try new things, someone once told me. It’s good advice that I solemnly repeat, with eyebrows waggling, to My Love whenever we throw down (waggle) our baggage (wagglewaggle) on the bed (wagglewagglewaggle) at our latest holiday destination.

She always obliges immediately, offering to swap sides of the mattress we sleep on.

beach stay focused message from This indicates a clear lack of communication between us or, more likely, that even my most suggestive waggle suffers from a severe lack of lower forehead flexibility.

Hence, I enthusiastically supported My Love's decision to spice up our annual beach trip this year by bringing in an outsider to loosen us up.

Yes, she hired a yoga instructor who makes house calls.

Morning stretches on the warm sand.

A symphony of seagulls and crashing waves in our ears.

The scent of undispersed BP crude lubricating our lungs.

If anything, it would have to be better than my last attempt at yoga. (For those to lazy to click the link, that consisted of me prone on a cold basement floor getting the heebie-jeebies, via grainy videotape, from a sculpted and oily yogi dude with a hipster ponytail who kept urging me to get in touch with myself and breeeeeeathe.)

irish yoga beach towelThis go-round, we started with a perfect harmonic convergence. Not between body and spirit nor, more likely, my body and alcoholic spirits. The great unification occurred between our scheduled yoga time and high tide.

As my swimming skills are suspect, we immediately moved to the second-floor deck of the beach house. This higher elevation should have offered us a stellar view of the Atlantic waters gently caressing the shore or, at a minimum, the waters carrying off the lounge chairs we had left a too close to the shore overnight. Instead, the rising sun blinded us as it focused down like God's own laser pointer.

"Petey? See these two?"

"Which two, God? Those freaks Heidi and Spencer at it again?"

"No! Right there! No! There! Those doofs on the deck! Jesus!"

"Not now, Dad! I'm trying to, uh, take the shower!"

"Sorry about that, son. And drop it. You really think I don't know what you're up to just because you pulled a few clouds around you?"

When I managed to see through my own perspiration and stench, I focused as best I could on our instructor. She was what you'd expect: toned, tanned, voice like liquid Smart Balance "butter." She also had a slight gap in between her front teeth. This made her bear an uncanny resemblance to the sister of a friend of mine, assuming said sister had giving up her habits of eight reality shows, two packs of smokes and case of Miller Lite a day. This image, along with my complete lack of coordination, contributed to an incongruity between my mind and body that not only prevented me from focusing on my breathing while trying to fold and unfold myself like an origami crane but also made briefly forget how to breathe.

INSTRUCTOR: "Breathe in. Feel your bellybutton rise slightly with the motion."

UNCOOL BRAIN: Wait -- wait! My bellybutton's going down. Quick - exhale. Exhale and reboot.

INSTRUCTOR: "Now, slowly breathe out through your mouth. Notice your bellybutton as it falls slightly."

UNCOOL BRAIN: Exha- … ack! No air! Inhale, inhale! Through my mouth or nose? Why is my belly button moving the opposite way again? Is it? AHHH! I can't feel my belly button! Where is it?! AHHH!

(Ironic realization: As a blogger, you would think I'd be better at naval gazing.)

At last, something started to click.

A warm, soothing calmness flowed through my limbs. My eyes closed, and I listened for my own heart beating.

And there it was: low, steady, pumping, thumping like a 10-year-old girl bouncing up the deck stairs, one wooden tread at a time …

"Daddy," Thing 1 called, "do you know where there's a plunger?"


  1. Plunge in, plunge out, release all the bad stuff, because there is more room out than there is, you don't want the toilet gushing all over the floor.

    I'm an expert in navel gazing, and really? Sometimes, it just not that great. I get confused by the directions.

  2. "Daddy," Thing 1 called, "do you know where there's a plunger?"

    How much did that set you back? Bribing the kids. Well played my man.


  3. Yoga was recommended to me for my blood pressure. However, I found it too stressful trying to get into all those positions and having 65 year old men in the class looking at me.

    Back to red wine for the heart! Hope your vacation included some!

  4. Try Yoga on the Nintendo Wii. That way, you and Mrs. Uncool can try it together, at your pace, when the Things are asleep, some candles lit...

  5. Listen, if I've told you once, I've told you once. My belly button is down there!

    I've been thinking of trying yoga lately. I've not gotten past the thinking stage yet. I'm not sure I can bring myself to think of anything but the pain I'd probably be in if I got twisted up in a pose, though.

  6. Yoga is best without all the pressure from creepy instructors.
    Just have some pretzel- like sex. :)

  7. That's so weird -- my wife seem unable to interpret the subtle subtext of my waggles too. What's up with that?

  8. Yoga was a bear. Or a catcher.

    Neither one belongs on a beach.

  9. There are just some things better left to the professionals. Yoga and parenting just don't mix my friend. Seriously, don't try it at home either. -J

  10. You have 10 site meters. I never noticed that before. Are you insane? No one needs 10. And the lipstick ad was very distracting.

    If you'd asked, I woulda warned you about Rodney Yee. He's not human. Pretty in an "I don't need to shave my legs" sorta way, but definitely not human.

    Just so you know, all yoga teachers try to catch you off guard with that whole breathing thing. We learn it in boot camp.

  11. Good day!This was a really marvelous theme!
    I come from milan, I was luck to discover your subject in yahoo
    Also I obtain a lot in your Topics really thanks very much i will come again

  12. I have found that yoga is best done in a class, where you can sit in the back and hide behind a more advanced student, or at home, where you can skip over the difficult parts without embarrassment.

  13. I tried yoga once. Keyword here is once. Then they suggested I do something called Downward Dog. Thanks Mr. Yoga Instructor, I save that one for my husband.

  14. I never see any people from India at my yoga classes. Hmm...

  15. Your child informing you of toilet issues will break concentration real quick-like.


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