Mating, Dating, Relating, Medicating

Jul 15

Vinyasa for the confused and restless

Sunday funday has such a nice ring to it. Why is there no similarly catchy phrase for what comes after Sunday funday?

  • On the 7th night she wept-ed
  • I’m weepy like Sunday evening
  • Fright night
  • Lo, the death of freedom approaches on a fast horse
  • Don’t look at the Blackberry don’t look at the Blackberry don’t look at the Blackberry…fuck.
  • Funkengruven
  • Extra wine to try and feel fine

What I’m saying is, I’m dreading the work week. I need to be practicing positive visualization or voodoo or something but even with that…I just don’t know. Things are not going well and I’m starting to get a bad feeling that the eventual resolution may not be “everything gets magically better.”


I have gone to four yoga classes in the past week. That brings my lifetime total up to six, and in the second one, a few years ago, I basically curled into a ball and prayed for death after about ten minutes, so.  In this week’s fourth class I finally learned what a sun salutation is. I mean, I’d been doing them (or rather “doing them”)  but I had no idea the sequence was, like, a thing. A thing that  I had heard of. (And doesn’t “sun salutation” sound like something those fit moms with the shiny hair do before they pick up their cleverly named children from Montessori? Or alternatively, the kind of thing women who have sex do? I would like to be one of those kinds of women.)

Anyway, the a-ha moment I had with the sun salutation was a lot like my surprise as a child when I finally realized that the days of the week came in the same order every time. The world lost a little magic that day. Remember when you were little and had no sense of time? That was a good phase.

In yoga, I have also learned that:

  • My knees really hurt.
  • My muscles do not twist/bend/stretch etc, despite the fact that I have been carefully preserving them in their original packaging for years now.
  • Yoga feels like church/I may actually have a previously undiscovered bent toward New Age things/I am having a spiritual crisis- slash-awakening that is messing with my ironic shell
  • The word “chataranga” is the best word ever. I don’t actually like to do the chataranga–a kind of planky push-up thing that hurts me all over — but I really like to say it. I think it’s my new all-purpose euphemism for genitals, among other things. For example: “Man, this bicycle seat is hurting my chataranga.”
  • I always thought this was a dirty lie perpetrated by my natural enemies, The Fit, but it’s actually true that second-day muscle soreness is greatly alleviated by exercise. What next? “Exercise improves your mood?” If The Fit turn out to be right…well, you are not going to want to see the existential crisis that will provoke. Or the ass-kicking.
  • I am TERRIBLE at yoga. Terrible. The worst student in the class by a factor of ten. I like it anyway. Namaste, haters.
  • Shavasana –the deep relaxation pose at the end of yoga where you commune with your breath or something — makes me cry, every single time

On a COMPLETELY UNRELATED NOTE I have been keeping track of what I eat in an app and you guys. The most surprising things have lots of calories. One day I rode my bike to yoga–you know how I do–and then, after class (the one where I learned that I was doing the child’s pose wrong) (that’s the resting pose, the one any child could do) I went to Whole Foods because I thought my evening of masquerading as one of The Fit wasn’t quite complete. Also, frankly, the idea of walking through Whole Foods wearing yoga pants, carrying a yoga mat, and exuding a glow of inner peace (or sweat, whatevs) excited my chataranga. Anyway, I bought some vegan General Tso’s chicken because that stuff is delicious for some reason* and then I sprinted home up the 16th St.hill** and after I ate my snooty overpriced dinner I entered it into my calorie app and it turns out that shit had, like, 1100 calories. ELEVEN HUNDRED. WTF. It’s barely even real food. “Seitan” indeed…could it be….SATAN?

*I like steak too.

**This is a lie.


Maybe when this all goes to shit I can get a job as a yoga teacher.***

***This is, hands down on the floor with your fingers making contact with mother earth as you gaze upward to elongate your spine, THE funniest sentence that has ever appeared on this blog. Or perhaps on the entire internet.


A list of things that make me cry in spite of what has been called my “tough exterior” and “intimidating demeanor” by men who are too scared to date me even though I am actually incredibly warm, nurturing, and good in bed. That’s not a joke–I really am

  • Choirs
  • That mix pop radio stations play during fireworks displays with patriotic songs like “Proud to be an American”
  • The gay pride parade
  • The death of Dr. Mark Green on ER
  • Dead/wounded/sad/lonely dogs
  • The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
  • Newborn babies, especially those produced by people I love
  • My boss (this one too!)
  • Heartbreak and its long tail (not lately though, thank god)

In closing, what if I quit my job, sublet my apartment, and left on a year-long yoga retreat — co-ed, with internet access — and came back all thin and centered and bendy AND THEN had a baby with someone who could put his feet behind his head (and had a trust fund) AND THEN wrote a book about the experience that was tender, yet tough, yet wise, and according to A.O. Scott had “emotional clarity” and a “provokes tears of empathy only paragraphs after tears of laughter”? Maybe “a universal story for everyone who has been looking for their place and worrying they would never find it”?

I would so read that.



17 Responses to “Vinyasa for the confused and restless”

  1. Schmemily says:

    I never comment anymore because it’s a pain to do on my phone, and that is how I access Google Reader these days, but: I love this and everything you have posted recently, I have done yoga kind of a lot and I hate child’s pose, and both the death of Dr. Greene and my job make me cry. or more accurately, my job leaves me on the VERGE of tears and gives me neck and shoulder tension and massive anxiety. Not all the time, fortunately, and some of this seems to be dissapating as I near the ten-month mark.

    Also, you may want to try Hatha yoga.

  2. rooth says:

    Chataranga has always made me think of “nether regions” as well. I’m glad I’m not alone in that. I think you could turn your future book into a movie starring Anne Hathaway – probably should start marketing the movie rights pronto!

  3. Cass says:

    I love this. I too have been going to yoga and developing a practice. That’s what they say when you’re REALLY awful but they like that you fill out the class because you finally make that other lady who’s “developing a practice” feel better because you are worse than she is. I also cry at the end because I’m sitting there breathing and that shit makes me cry and it does feel religious or at least deeply spiritual. Cheers.

  4. Kristin H says:

    You know what makes me cry, every time? Parades. There’s the Girl Scouts! (cue tears). Special Olympics! (sniffle) Habitat for Humanity! (SOB!) I sit there and think, what is WRONG with me?

    Anyway, you might also like meditation. It has helped me through many a crisis.

  5. Diary of Why says:

    Sundays are the worst. I wonder if I could somehow trick my brain by calling it “Saturday 1″ and “Saturday 2.”

    I am about to embark on my yogic journey, starting today! I got permission from my boss to shift my schedule slightly, allowing me to go to yoga class nightly, after work. Which, we’ll see how often that ends up happening.

    And I would totally take a year-long yoga break.

  6. Nicole says:

    You make me smile. a) there is no such thing as being bad at yoga, as long as your intention is good, b) chaturanga IS a funny word, c) mula bandha is also a funny term and it refers to your pelvic floor, which makes it funnier, d) vegan foods are often surprisingly high in calories. I think it’s all the nuts involved. Like, actual nuts, not like “crazy nuts”.

  7. Lindsay says:

    I recently embarked on my first yoga class in about 10 years, plus oh let’s say about 70 lbs. on my frame, and I nearly left in tears. Shit’s hard with a bigger belly, neck fat, and thighs that each weigh the same as a small child. I haven’t been back since. Instead I turned my crazy in the direction of zumba and no one there cares AT ALL that I can’t shimmy my hips like the instructor does, so long as I just keep moving.

    I loved the salmon teriyaki rice bowl at Whole Foods. It was like freakin’ crack. And at $10 per bowl, almost as expensive. Just don’t forget your reusable bag.

    And I’m all for quitting jobs and soul searching. Granted, I’m living back in my childhood bedroom at the moment. But it’s what I needed. When I could barely will myself out of bed in the mornings, I knew it was time to quit. And I’m happier now than I’ve been in 4 years.

  8. Michael Ann says:

    “Masquerading as one of the fit.” LOVE that. I feel that way all the time. I walk everyday because it clears my head. I do some arm weights and some sit ups. I am always told I look “fit.” I feel like I’ve got everyone fooled. But hey, that’s ok right?

    Love what Yoga is doing for you! Keep it up!

  9. MJ says:

    (a) I love you. (b) I REALLY (really, really, realllllllly) want you to enter the Washington Post’s humor writing contest. Will you please? You could use the PMS mental illness blog or the blog about writing the bus or one of the many other hilarious things you have written. You NEED to do this. Because you are not only more funny than any of their “examples”, you are also a lovely person. (c) I mean it.

  10. Mary Catherine says:

    This in conjuction with this = crying jag

  11. Mary Catherine says:

    My most embarrassing “Parade that Made Me Cry” was an casual encounter with the Puerto Rican Independence Day parade. Could NOT stop crying.

  12. i LOVED this blog entry. I definitely laughed out loud at work. Thanks for making my day.

  13. Ally says:

    You continue to make my universe a better place – life is better with your spin on it. This reminds me I need to get back to yoga class. Just to say chataranga.

  14. CES says:

    There’s good news!! There is absolutely no such thing as good at yoga. Or bad at yoga, for that matter. It is simply not possible. You could lie in Savasana for the entire class for years and be the same at yoga as those pretzel-y people. I hope you keep going. Yoga saved my life when I had a guy like Lieu and a job that made me cry. I credit it with the fact that I no longer have those things.

  15. SAF says:

    I took up yoga in May. I am old, fat, and injured in ways that make me inflexible.

    I’ve been going 3 times a week.

    I can cross my legs now, for the first time in many years.

    There really is no such thing as “bad at yoga.”

  16. aunti says:

    I Looved this one! I love that you are doing some yoga! I can just see you walking thru whole foods with your yoga matt ! (LOL)

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