Así soy

Saturday, August 6, 2011

New Adventures in the Bible Belt

So I am off to the East Coast and my totally awesome belly dance students had a surprise goodbye party for me.  And they gave me the most awesome present.  Something I have always wanted (see Risky Business)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Tesseract (Naiya net) (for geeks)

Don't know who to credit for this
Ok, so yeah, I blanked on the Blog.  I can't say I've particularly evolved in any successful sense lately except to perfect an oven-roasting technique for poblano peppers.
So I'm doing a little time-folding via flashes that sparked in my brain during the past month:

1-My puppy is 7 months old and 60 pounds.  While she is sweet, enthusiastic and scary smart, I will be glad when she can organize her movements according to the laws of physics.

2-The word "organize" is tremendously vague.  Depending on who uses this term, it can mean basically anything.  For example, when Obi Wan says how important it is to be organized, I think he means to be deliberate in my movements, whereas I think for Mr. J it means to put strength and effort into the movement.  When Paul yells, "Get organized," I think he means "Don't f*** yourself up and get hurt on me!"  It's like a 4-dimensional organize.

3-I had the fantastic opportunity to dance to a (spontaneous) Cajun/Zydeco version of the Arabic song "Leyla."  The melody was fiddled by none other than the sublime Catherine Matovitch herself.  And I was belly dancing in cowboy boots.  That's perfection organized.

4-Now can I keep the Blog organized?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Puppy Haiku

Rain falls on the ground.
Clouds slubbing into grey skies.
My face a flower.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Indiana Jones and the Strip Mall Bar (Part 3)

So I'm sitting at this tiny table in a roadhouse bar, my self-esteem pretty blighted by the fact the only people interested in talking with me are a couple of hardened (and sloshy) barflies, one of whom is an angry financier with minimal social skills.

I focus on Indy and his band (who incidentally are playing kick-ass rock and roll,) but then I notice some of the students across the room texting on their phones.

    Of course!

So I pull my phone out and text La Diva (who BTW had planned to go with me but ended up hours south of San Francisco on her own adventure.)
Me: Hi. @bar. Listening 2 Indy.
LaDiva: Fun? Nice place?
Me: um, dive.  currently @tableful of sticky barflies
LaDiva: Indy not with U?
Me: Indy bzy playing in band.
LaDiva:  ??? get out of there!!! R U crazy?!

Major Toht dislikes my texting.  He waves a hand in front of my phone to get my attention.  He points at me and then points at the band.

Major Toht:  uuweeedaban?

Me: Am I with the band? ? Yes, I am here with the bass player.  And the guitarist.  And the keyboardist.  And the singerist.

Major Toht (angry skeptical look): ohwehh? yuuukknnzzzseezname?

Me: His name is Indiana Jones and we are married. We were childhood sweethearts who reunited while searching for the Lost Ark together:  as you yourself may well remember since you were there.   Incidentally, I liked your fold-up hanger.

Fortunately, before I have to continue this completely fatuous (WOD) monologue, the band takes a break.  Indy comes right over, whips his arms around me in a big hug and says, "Let's go outside; they'll think we're going to make out."

At any rate, I enjoy the rest of the night hanging with Indy's friends, while my abandoned barflies sit across the room, two watching me like sad puppies.

And Major Thot.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


So I was sitting Sunday night writing the third installment of Indiana Jones and the Strip Mall Bar and suddenly a wave of panic slapped me upside the head.  This overwhelming sense of urgency and dread made me jump up from the computer and look around the room (causing my puppy to leap up and look around the room as well.)

Then I remembered:
School starts tomorrow!
School starts tomorrow!
School starts tomorrow!
School starts tomorrow!

Wiping my suddenly sweaty palms on the back of my furry puppy, I became aware of many tasks which had been trying to get my attention:  organize my lesson plans, make sure I had the materials packed in my bag, print out my rosters, tank up my car, and pack food for lunch.
I started with refrigerator first since the food thing for lunch was pretty important (I stand for 6 hours interacting with students and if I don't have food laid out on a table in plain sight I won't remember to eat until my knees buckle.)

But as I reached for the refrigerator door, I suddenly had a much, much better idea:
     I opened the freezer instead.

I took out the emergency pint of Ben & Jerry's Half-Baked Cookie Dough ice cream and mixed in half a bag of mini-chocolate chips.  I set the mix on the counter to melt to the perfect softness while I climbed into PJs and and placed my car keys where I could find them easily in the wee morning hour.
Then I flopped on the sofa and knocked back the entire carton while watching the en español version of Titanic to its bitter, icy end.

In a sugar-stupor, I lurched to the bedroom and collapsed on the bed.  I would pay for this tomorrow.  But I was already dreaming of the three enormous coffees I would chug in order to be able to fully open my eyes, not to mention participate in the upcoming morning frenzy.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Indiana Jones and the Strip Mall Bar (Part 2)

So Major Toht sidled up close on my left, staring down at me fixedly.  I thought, hokey dokey, and turned back to Friendly Farmer (who was only to happy to inch closer to my right side).  I tried to focus on Indiana and his band.  There was a tap on my left shoulder.
Major Toht:       Shhhzhh gnnna shuhf wha?
Me (smile):   I cannot hear you.
Major Toht (frowning) gnnnan thzzz rrr gonka streep?
Me (bigger smile and nod): I cannot hear you.

Major Toht held out his jacket and pointed at me.  Puzzled, I took his leather jacket with two fingers, hefted it a couple of times and handed it back.
Major Toht: Shhhzhh gnnna shuhf wha furrrzoh?
Me: Yes, it is certainly very heavy.  And I cannot hear you.

Major Toht looked very frustrated.  He pointed at me and then at himself, and then began waving his hands wildly around his head.   Noting my renewed attention at this interesting turn of events, Major Toht pointed toward the back of the bar and drew out a pack of cigarettes, offering me one (I shook my head, no.) He frowned.  Then, with a crazy smile,  he repeatedly threw his arms up over his head but this time with huge gestures and some skipping and hip gyrations.

Me:  Nuclear war?
Me:  Balloon ride?
Me:  I give up.  Anyway, I cannot hear you.

Major Toht was now clearly annoyed, so I moved away from the bar to a small round table with a chair, closer to the band.  I waved to Indy who grinned and waggled his eyebrows acknowledging my relocation and the reasons for it.  However, my independence was short-lived: Friendly Farmer reappeared on my right dragging a chair. He began a new unintelligible (and apparently amusing to him) monologue.  Major Toht with an angry scowl dragged up a seat on my left.  Toht took out his wallet (causing 12 interesting thoughts to race through my mind.) He placed first his driver's license in front of me on the table and then a business card indicating he was a financier.  This put a new perspective on the charades:  Was he hoping I would invest in explosives?

Major Toht: shhhhhzg nnrtgka   kkka furrrzaa wonka!

Just then a new large man, Boozy Santa, added himself to our group.  Boozy Santa didn't try to speak, he just stood near Friendly Farmer, smiling and staring.

Friendly Farmer glanced at Boozy Santa, put his hand on my wrist and promptly declared:
"Thz is mah wahff!"

Monday, January 17, 2011

Indiana Jones and the Strip Mall Bar, Part 1

So my friend and colleague (I'll call him "Indiana") is not only a hilarious genius in his chosen field, but also a rock star who plays a pretty mean guitar.  He has invited me to see his band play as often as I've probably invited him to come see me dance, but neither of us has been able to sync our schedules.  
And then last week, it happened: he was playing on a night that I wasn't dancing.  After thinking about it all day, I figured, this opportunity probably won't occur again anytime soon, so I'm going for it.
This suspect shape is not the actual marquee

I googled the name of the bar to get the address.  The name had the word "lounge" in it which made me think of a hotel night club, but the exterior picture revealed a bar with a marquee shaped like the kind that cheap motels use complete with a martini on it.  I had dressed in basic club wear, but after considering the photo I decided to change into jeans.

Gold Glitter Platform Shoes: not appropriate

I really wanted to wear the red motorcycle jacket but felt that was too much commitment to the strip mall bar genre.

Getting on the 680 freeway
, I discovered that the famous San Francisco fog had crept over the mountains so I could play a night game of Hide and Seek with the pavement.

My GPS faithfully guided me through the streets until I pulled into the lounge parking lot.

My first impression was that my first impression (on the web) was correct.  I was thrilled!  I had never been to a dive before and this was my first one!  I opened the door and just like in the movies, all the men hunkered down on stools at the bar turned to look at me.  I stood in the doorway for a moment trying to figure out what I was supposed to do.  I figured a regular bar lady person would walk right up to the bar and order something.  So I calmly walked to the end of the bar and leaned against it, smiling at the other customers.  I looked over at the bartender, but he only glanced at me in that professional bartender way that probably dismissing instantly as a club soda kinda gal.  So I turned around to face the band; Indiana spotted me, smiled and waved.  I leaned on the bar trying to project Karen Allen from the first Indy movie.

The man to my right leaned in close, and with beery breath he mumbled,"Wahlla Whalla monka wonka yu weer."  I thought, Oh my gosh, this is a real drunken barfly just like in the movies!  So I smiled and replied, "I cannot hear you" (which was true because the band was so loud my eyes had trouble focusing together.)  My barfly proceeded to tell me a long boozy story that was completely unintelligible, and finished with an entertaining disco dance for me.  I certainly could not fault him for his sociability.  I finally gleaned from my barfly's ramblings that he used to be a farmer (or still was - I'm not sure.)

He then said, "Bartender! I'm buying for her" in perfectly clear and audible tones.  The bartender brought over a club soda with lime.  We looked at each other for a moment before I grinned, acknowledging his professional assessment of my drink preference for this evening.

Suddenly, Friendly Farmer grabbed my arm and whispered hoarsely, "Watch out for that guy!"  He waved a finger at a tall, muscular man wearing a beret who had appeared at my left side.  I looked up to find Major Toht (from the first Indy movie) staring intently at me.
And I thought, What now?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Farewell to Arms

Ok, I totally like this title.
I planned to write about how Kelly has got my shoulder back into working condition.  It's not as perfect as I want it to be, but I can easily put a sword on my head so really, what can I complain about?
However, despite the catchy wording, the title is basically pretty creepy as though I were saying goodbye to my arms which I don't think even the original work was talking about.  Or that I was giving up my cache of weaponry which is nonsense.  But because I can't seem to shake the phrase, I will leave it there and just move onto the blog.

So for the last of the weekly visits, Kelly celebrated by holding my left arm behind my back, grinding down on my ribcage and also destroying my first rib in an amazingly painful manner that once again threatened to detonate my left eye.  It is possible I will now need glasses.  In fact, I found I was actually unable to inflate my lungs and could only take little squeaky otter breaths.

Of course Kelly continued our conversation as though flattening someone to the depth of a graham cracker on a table were a common occurrence.  He did pause to ask why I wasn't responding, but I was reeling in a semi-conscious world: you know, that mental state you fall into when you are channeling the pain of your arm being coiled like a slinky behind your back while at the same time someone is smothering you.

Anyway,  there I was, live in the moment, when I realized at last my shoulder could move and I would have to let go of my Obi Wan training wheels.

I miss the Tuesday 5:30am drive, the smell of coffee in the freakin' cold San Francisco morning air, but most of all, getting a weekly installment of the adventures of the Kwisatz Haderach.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


So clearly I have not written much lately and been fobbing everyone off with pics and video and other random publications.  This was a feeble attempt to disguise a speed bump in my evolution.  Between work, and holidays, and the flu and rehearsals and shows I had an internal mantra of "As soon as I get a moment, I swear I'll write about something."

Plus, I need to get back on the workout track.  When the time crunch hit, it was the first train that derailed.   Of course, I seriously think it is possible that even before I was an otter, I was like a chipmunk or a marmot - something that hibernates when it gets cold.  Right now, the thought of putting on dance pants and a t-shirt and voluntarily going to an outdoor gym causes an autonomous reaction in which my knees buckle, thus forcing me to return to the sofa and watch another episode of Medium.

There was also the re-evaluation factor : were the benefits outweighing the injuries?  With the holiday show season at hand, I decided (at least temporarily) no.

Now I am partially couch otter and part hyper otter.  The entire dance studio is sparkling and neat, but my office is a storage facility.  My bedroom is clean and straightened up, but my closet is impenetrable.  My puppy is shiny and soft, but I have over 800 emails in my in-box and a total of 17 phone messages that I have not listened to (I am not making that up.)

Anyway, there is finally time to do stuff and write about it in blog.  After all, there is a mostly finished article on Obi Wan, and an adventure story to be told about the rock and roll star and the strip mall bar.

And it has to be more fun than cleaning grout with a toothbrush.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Genius comes in many forms

So Kelly springs another of his invented words on me.

He has warned against the dangers of developing "asslaminate."

Ass-laminate is what happens to your butt when you sit a lot: you laminate all the layers of muscle and stuff so that they get stuck together most unpleasantly) (and probably unattractively.)

Think like a wise man but communicate in the language of the people (- W B Yeats)

Friday, December 10, 2010

A Night Out (in which I did not forget to work on Mobility)

In my woolly vest, soaked with rain, forced to consume delicacies, I do not forget my mobility exercises....
I also had an audience...

Executive stretch
Some sort of stretch but seriously the boots are cute

The Spencers are amazing lasso artists as well as riders

Thursday, December 9, 2010


So today I am at home with alternating ice & hot packs on my face.

I am suffering from SEF.

Those in the teaching profession are at high risk for the painful SEF syndrome:
  Smiling Encouraging Face.

Smiling Encouraging Face is completely different Professional Face (PF.)  PF is a happy enthusiastic face that I wear for short periods of time and usually the PF either genuinely reflects the fun I'm having or it can actually generate a sense of fun for real.

On the other hand, I have to wear Smiling Encouraging Face for 5-6 hours at a time.  I use this face when sitting through a series of presentations given by nervous students.  I have to look encouraging, friendly, interested and engaged in whatever they are demonstrating.  I totally understand that presenting to a group of people can be nerve-racking, and even more so if the language you are presenting in is not your own.  So SEF gives them assurance in the way that a light house reminds anxious ships that land is nearby.

But while sometimes PF can be hard to maintain (it does involve an eye smile as well,) the SEF is an absolute labor of love: the sheer endurance factor has my face aching after the first hour.  I've even taken Advil because my aching cheeks feel as though they have single-handedly each pushed a Prowler.  Uphill.  In the Snow. To Canada.

This semester is complicated because after sitting with SEF through 6 hours of presentations, I have a 2 hour break before teaching a dance class that requires a mix of PF and SEF.  During that afternoon break, I let my face pass out into an utterly expressionless coma.

By the time I get home uber-late after the dance class,  my lips feel like rubber, my eyes are jammed back into my cerebrum, and my cheeks are like individual face migraines.

However, the presentations are now over and I'll be giving final exams:
It would be pretty creepy if I were smiling and nodding while watching students working on tests.  So I get to look just as blank as they do.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Phone Tag, Part 2: I'm it

So I do a quick assessment of the restaurant and realize the only quiet place will be outside.  So I rush through the front door and try to get a grip on the giggles.  In a post-laughter adrenaline-haze, I lean against a lamp post and manage, "Hello?"
OB1 clearly can tell that I am in the middle of something interesting and politely asks, "Is this a good time?  Perhaps I should call back later?"

So, I have two options:
I can say, "Actually, OB1, thanks so much for asking, let me call you back later because in my current situation I can only wander up and down the street outside of this restaurant in the middle of Oakland in the dark, avoiding interesting street people who are highly entertained by my sparkly super-cute shoes and the fact that I am walking outside without a coat, talking by myself in the cold, cold rain."

I can say (and I'm paraphrasing,) "No, it's totally fine!"

So I'm not sure that either of us could actually understand everything I was saying by the end of the call since I was shivering pretty hard, clutching that phone with a chilled, dripping hand.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Call Me

So Obi Wan and I have been playing phone tag for a while.  It's been more like, he texts asking me to call, and I call and leave messages that become increasingly more rambling and more inane.  For example:

Me:   Hi, uh, I know I'm calling later than we agreed but I was driving and...well, I actually always drive at that time so I'm not sure... I mean, I have to teach at...  never mind, it's just that I have more time at night so... oh, and don't call back at this number it's my work number and I never answer it or check messages... Not that I'm a slacker. I just use email and... oh God why isn't there a Delete Your Message option on your phone???

Since I pretty much earn a living speaking and performing extemporaneously, relying heavily on the ability to think and communicate simultaneously, I was mortified at my lack of even basic coherence.  I hung up, imagining Obi Wan's face as he listens to the inarticulate babbling, sure that he now thinks I must have a ghost writer for my work.

So, at any rate, tonight I'm in a Middle Eastern restaurant watching (and dancing with) my dancer friend.  There is a rowdy group of customers celebrating a birthday and we are all shouting encouragement as the men get up and dance.  And then out of the corner of my eye, I see that my cell phone is flashing.  It's OB1.  So without thinking, I grab it and swipe the Droid unlock to answer it.

And then I stare at the phone.

I become acutely aware of my surroundings: middle eastern music blasting away, people clapping and shouting, dancer's zils blazing; there is no chance whatsoever that I will be able to hear anything OB1 may say in response to anything that I am probably going to shout, spontaneously babbling.

So I stare at the phone.  And then it happens.

Before I go any further, I have to relate what happened to me and Elaine at Easter Mass a couple of years ago.  Elaine and I were sitting in the middle of a pew together in the center of a large Catholic church, listening as a visiting priest sang part of the liturgy.  For those of you not Catholic, normally the cantors (real singers) sing parts of the liturgy.   This unfortunate man, alas, was tone deaf and struggled mightily to sound even remotely musical.  However, he did achieve an odd rolling rhythm that was eerily familiar.  Elaine and many members of the congregation struggled to stay focused, but I was on a tangent, fully absorbed trying to identify that cadence and figure out where I had heard it before.  I was unaware that Elaine was now biting her lip in an effort to maintain control.

Suddenly, I recognized the rolling, rolling rhythm and I leaned over to Elaine, when the priest wound down, and sang quietly into her left ear the triumphant climactic phrase:
" Rawhide! ♫ "

I was unprepared for the consequences of my action.

Elaine exploded into gasping, racking bouts of laughter, startling everyone in the congregation.  Her honking volume grew exponentially with each breath; I was swept away by the volcanic pyroclastic flow of her laughter and burst out laughing.  As I'm sure you know, trying to contain it only added additional effects like snorting, choking and tears.  I could only think "Get Out of here! Get Out of here!"   Elaine was way ahead of me, shoving her way through the pews, barely able to breathe through the howling paroxysms.  We staggered outside.
After several minutes of painful, convulsive laughter, we lay gasping on the grass in our nice Easter Dresses.
Elaine: OMG!

And finally another quiet moment of ragged breathing.
Me: We will have to change churches now.

These repeated attempts to regain sanity continued for the rest of the day.
We were pretty famous after that.

At any rate, back to the Middle Eastern restaurant & the Droid.  So I'm standing in the middle of the restaurant surrounded by shouting, clapping people dancing to the beat of the crazy loud music and I have answered my cell phone.  All OB1 can hear is a melange of serious noises... dominated by my helpless giggling laughter spawned by the complete pathos of the moment that our phone tag has led to.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A Whole New World

So I'm working away on Web stuff.  My coffee is steaming, the flu has been successfully trounced by my immune system, and I did not burn the bacon.

My puppy is playing with her Kiwi bird by drowning it in her water bowl and then violently thrashing it.

I type away on a blog draft and in the middle of a sentence----
Nothing.  The screen is frozen. What the --?
I have lost connectivity!
I check the ethernet connection.
I check the router.
I reboot my computer.
My puppy watches all of this with interest.

Then she disappears back under the table and reappears dragging a long blue cable:

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Paleo in the High Beta Lane

So here is my daily breakfast routine:

1) Put 1/2 pound awesome fresh Wellshire bacon in large pan and place on burner.

2) Turn burner on medium.

3) Go to computer to "check on a few things" before flipping bacon.

4) Read email from friend asking opinion about costume color.  Go to website, check out costume.  Notice other costumes.  Check sizes.  Consider buying one. Send reply to friend.

5) Read request from student to check a homework assignment.  Log into online work.  Review student's work and correct it.  Send message to student.

6) Think of new idea for Blog and open application to jot down a few notes.

7) Imagine picture that will go well with it, search for the base photo in folders, open Photoshop and...

8) Accck!!

9) Race to the pan in the smoke-filled kitchen and scrape out 1/2 pound of charred remains.

10) Go back to Step 1 and start process again.

If there were a trophy for the largest quantity of bacon burned per month, I would be a double crown winner.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Sound of Silence

So I got a couple of emails asking why there has been a black hole of silence in my blog.
I think it's better that I simply report the conversation I had this past weekend:

Brain:     Dudes, we need a blog episode and I'm too tired to think of anything
              remotely interesting to say.

Rest of Body:
Rest of Body: 
Rest of Body:  
Rest of Body: 

Brain:      Stomach? No comment from you?

Stomach: Not available, still enjoying the pumpkin pie and whipped cream
                swimming pool down here!

Brain:     Um, Immune System? 

Immune system:  Sorry, a little busy here planning a raid on the out of control Rave
                          that the germs have going on behind the eyes.



Brain:  Uh, hey, Germs! Do you have a few minutes?

Germs: We're not funny.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Tis the Season

So my weekends are booking up as companies and people are organizing their seasonal, end of year parties.  As Kelly pointed out, nothing says the Holidays like a belly dancer!
This luckily coincides with the slowdown of the school semester so that I have more time for practicing, performing and choreographing, not to mention a little sewing to tweak the fit on costumes  (although admittedly my sewing skills are perhaps on the Frankensteinian level.)

And right on schedule, the semester just peaking with loads of projects, exams, grading, and presentations, dancing, workshops, and rehearsals, my sullen immune system senses the impending slow down at work with the advent of the holiday season.

Immune System:   so, uh, hey, how are you feeling, Throat?

Throat             :  What? What are you --- oh, no, I think...I think I feel sore!

Immune System :  No way!  And how are you feeling, Metabolism?

Metabolism       : Actually, I feel sort of elevated, but not in a good way...
                          Do we have a fever?

Immune System:  Hmmmm, don't know.  Hey, eyes, how are you today?

Eyes                : Wait a minute, we feel raw and bloodshot!  What's going on?
                          I think we are being invaded by microbes!

Immune System:  Well, how about that?  Maybe I should do something about those germs, Maybe I should get off my over-worked-taken-for-granted butt and maybe help you all out One More Time!  Well, I'll certainly take it under advisement-  once I have finished this delightful glass of champagne.

Rest of Body     :  This is SO wrong!!  You rotter!  Brain, Help!!

Immune System : Tsk, Tsk, looks like Mr. Stress has momentarily stepped out. MWHAHAHA!

Stomach           : Um, FYI guys, I have heard that lots of barbecue is good for a fever...


Monday, November 15, 2010

Mile Marker : five months

So I'm now five months into this and I finally hit a significant milestone: this was the first day that I noticed a difference in my efforts with Paul.  I wasn't floundering & confused.  I was actually focused and working!

It feels totally weird to have Paul who is sporting a new IceMan haircut like Steve McQueen's in The Great Escape, talking about "plates" and I know what those are.  They are not actually called wheels even though they look exactly like wheels and nothing like plates, at least not the plates at my house.

So anyway, after repeatedly shoving the Pink Prowler that Paul kindly continued to enhance by adding two wheels of weight after each run, I bent over panting against the table legs waiting for the sickening sucking sensation to leave my legs.

Paul:       You have a new PR!

Brain:      Prowler Run?

Stomach: Pork Rinds!

Paul :      Personal Record!  You have pushed over 2 1/2 times your weight!




So there it is: a sense of accomplishment not based solely on the fact that I survived intact.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010


So Paul had me on my back on the floor with my legs up against the wall.  The task was to see how far I could reach to each side with each leg to stretch some technical term muscle/ligament in order to make my squats amazing and powerful! I had slid my legs down the wall and was now actively trying to push them farther apart.  Aforementioned tendon now felt like a steel cable tearing through my flesh.

Me:  Um, this is as far as my legs will go given the current state of my physical human body.

Paul:  Well, I could stand here, like this, and then push down on your legs to get more stretch.

He faces the wall, straddling my torso. As he begins to lean forward, his butt begins a journey out toward my face.   And I realize those loose shorts are about to cross the event (line of sight) horizon.

I squeeze my eyes tightly shut as Paul's baggy shorts hover over my face.

Paul: Ok, I'm going to reach down to push on your legs.

ME:  !!!
ME:  Auughhh!




Paul: Ok, or maybe not.

Monday, November 8, 2010

in delicto flagrante

Paul:  Can u change ur appt from 3:00 to 2:30?
Me  : In class giving test hang on
Paul: Ok
Me  : Ok think so. will drive fast.
Paul: ok will b w Mr. J
Me  : ok
Paul: thnx 4 b flexible w time
Me  : no worries

So while this seems like a pretty innocuous text exchange, the text-versation actually occurred while I was in a classroom watching my students wring out cerebral sweat onto an exam.  One of my students came up with a question while I was typing and I actually said with my own human flesh lips, "hang on a sec."

This comment made my student's eyes bulge because my class is like an airplane: the use of electronic devices is not permitted while the plane is in motion.  Unauthorized use of a cell phone or iPod interferes with the successful navigation of the class.  Students must keep them off until I turn off the Fasten Seat Belt sign.  And yet, there I was, blatantly texting while the students struggled with stem-changing verbs.

So I confessed the shamefulness of my behavior to Paul.

Paul (and I am paraphrasing):  Well, everyone is hypocritical.  After all, look at me with the health diet!  And yet, I am a serious cookie monster.
Me:   This is SO true!

So then I thought, there is no point to being a measly hypocrite:

From now on, I will Be Brazen!


Friday, November 5, 2010


Paul: I've thought about blogging my perspective on our training sessions, you know.

Me :   Oh really?  You see them differently from the way I do?  I think I portray them pretty accurately.  And I try to see my efforts from your point of view too:  like the
          burning building thing.

Paul: Ha, ha, yeah.  Anyway, when I thought about what I was going to blog,
         I couldn't think of a way to describe it that was, well, like not, well,
         that wasn't like kinda mean or anything.

Me  :

Me  :

Me  :

Me  :

Paul : Um...wait a minute...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Raising the Bar

So Mr. J. has me working on crunches and butt squeezy things. Then I get up and see that we are heading over to the metal frame where Paul has me do the oxen yoke bar lifts.  I'm thinking, ok, I have done these before.
But Mr. J has placed a metal bar at the bottom of the frame.
I stare at Mr. J, confused.
He then says, Today you are going to do a (technical term technical term) lift.   While I don't recognize the name, my brain makes a huge leap and accurately translates this into DeadLift.

My entire body breaks into a sweat, and I struggle to understand Mr. J's instructions. This is hard for my brain to do because my low back is letting out a constant wailing scream that rivals a fire engine:

Mr. J.: Ok, you are going to push your ass back and keep your chest up and reach for the bar.
Lower Back: Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!! Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!

Mr. J.: And then fnslkeopnmr vsdlfjvpso jalk  oiseurjksf whelrjp lker.
Brain: What? What? I can't hear anything?!
Lower Back: Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!! Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!

Mr. J. : Ok, give it a try.

With the Lower Back in full banshee mode, my hands damp with sweat, and my brain completely bailing and heading out for a drink, I stick my butt back, pushing down into the floor against the outside of my feet and keeping my chest up.  I grip the bar, take a deep breath, brace, and push my hips forward.

And stagger backwards, nearly falling.

Mr J. has given me a new bar that I will call the Smurf bar.  Although it appears to be a heavy steel bar, it is once again one of his illusions: it is like one of the aluminum edge tubes on a hang-glider, weighing basically nothing.

My whole body is silent.

My brain, slightly tipsy on an adrenaline Martini, says: Well, looks like Someone at the Body Party deserves to wear the Cone of Shame!

Lower back (sniffling): well, it could have been really heavy!

Mr. J.: Ok, well, now that the drama is over, let's try a little weight.

So although the lower back whimpered about how the Rest of Body may be sorry, it held up very well and even got the hang of it as we went up in increments to something bordering actual effort.

Mr. J. is still working the street magic.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Just how sleep-deprived am I?

So driving home today I thought, 'I need to blog about my Tuesday training with Paul and then I need to blog about my Thursday training with Mr. J.'

And then my Brain thought: the way I am traded back and forth, I should refer to them as Mr. P and Mr. J.

Brain: In fact, I can think of them as my PJs. Ha ha ha!

Brain: Wait, even better, it's like a P & J sandwich!

Ha Ha Ha!

Rest of body:
Rest of body:
Rest of body:
Rest of body:

Rest of body: We need more sleep.