Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Worry bout your damn self

Back in my days of teaching little kids, there was a common theme - they'd come over and let me know that Maria was not, in fact, on her carpet square, or that James did not wash his hands after he went to the bathroom. For anything not a major offense, my answer was the same, "Worry about yourself."

I was sitting at dinner the other night with a table full of people I didn't know. After talking for a bit, a guy and I realized we both knew someone who went to my CrossFit.

Me: "Oh yeah; she's great. Quiet, hard worker."

Him: "She does CrossFit? She's not that fit though, right?"

Cue my face that has produced the nice set of wrinkles I have in my forehead.

"Not everyone in CrossFit is superfit...but, everyone there tries hard, and it's a great community. She's strong."

"But she could be fitter. She could try harder."

Defensive me: "Yeah, so could I. So could you. She works her tail off."

It's possible I had consumed a few beers and didn't say this in the most kindhearted of tones, but seriously, who the fuck says that about another human that's working to be better? And not only that, one of my humans. A lovely lady that comes to my classes and trusts me and puts in the time to improve. I don't think there's a person in the world that sits back and says, "Ya know what? I'm at the peak of human performance. I'm good." Not so much. Everyone can be a better version of themselves.

He then muttered something (because I think he wanted to hammer in the fact that he was, indeed, a self conscious douche) about him being fitter than most of my CrossFit. I just laughed. "No, dude. You're not." And hell, who knows, he may be (this part's a joke, but I'm leaving it open...I've been wrong about men before - see previous post). But, I do know this - I watch very regular people work out with amazing intensity day to day - they do things that are abnormal as hell when it comes to strength and fortitude. And anyone with that kind of toughness does not have to say aloud how tough they are.

Heed your second grade teacher's advice, folks. Mockery is for assholes.   

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Dearest men,

Ya don't even have to worry about it anymore. It's not you, it's me. We're done. And I'm not making some grand move to the other side; I'm just finished.

Blame it on John Legend. Blame it on Dustin Kensrue. Blame it on my idiot heart that thought I could handle it all. Nah, wait...blame it on you. It's you, not me. You told me to trust. You told me you felt the same. I bared it all and let you see it, gave you honesty, gave you generosity, gave you more than you deserved.

And you gave me back exactly what, deep down, I knew you would. And it's not the first time you've done it to me, but it will be the last. It took this one...this one after roughly 16 years of relationships for me to nail on the head exactly how I will never feel again.

I may slip up. It's possible you may get my naked body at a moment of weakness in the future. But trust, dearest men, that I will never "mean it" with you again.

One of you may have been the iceberg sticking out of the water, but the whole of you under the surface sunk the fucking ship. I learned my lesson. It took me an embarrassingly long time, but I learned. It took a divorce. It took hearing, "I don't care enough about you to try." It took tears and trips across the world and empty bank accounts.

There's a reason I never trusted you. Being right has done got old.

It took the lot of you, and I will not take another.

And please, dear men, don't patronize me with saying this is fresh and I'll love again and all the other bullshit you can conjure. I gave you that countless times, and I am done giving my life away.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Reset button

I'm having a bit of a rough time lately. Mind you, I've got first world problems out the wazoo, but it's quite scary not being able to pay your bills, eating like ya shouldn't, and sleeping about half the amount you require. These things screw with your hormones and kinda mess up your life. And this being consistent over several months' time, well, that just sorta turns one into an asshole.

And today, I was feeling particularly assholish. I was spent. There was a raccoon's nest in my unkempt hair, and I had on the same clothes from yesterday...and, my friends, I do a lot of the fitness...

My last yoga class of the day was at Kate Barnard Correctional Center. I forced myself to drive to the east side. I wasn't into it. I feel like my nonprofit has been neglected at the expense of having to focus on for profit endeavors lately, and it pisses me off. I spilled my coffee on myself getting out of the truck. I pulled out our mat box and realized some random incarcerated bitch had stolen my mat cleaner.

I really wasn't into it.

I let my class know I was a little tired. I managed not to tell a student I was going to write an L and an R on her hands if she didn't get the left/right business together. Remember - "assholish." And then, about 3/4 of the way through class, an older lady tells me her knee hurts.

"Bad?"

"Yeah, it just pops in and out and that hurts. I've been doing a lot of squatting since I got put in here, and it hurts more."

"What kind of squatting?" asks the slowly perking up me.

"Well, I use that machine in there..."

I stopped class. "Stand up. Show me what you're doing."

It was not a good thing. Her knees were together, her torso was on top of her thighs, her face was all squinty.

"Hold up - stop that. Everybody, we're gonna learn how to squat."

I taught them a proper squat. CrossFit HQ woulda been proud. "Now, does that hurt your knee?"

"No...it feels fine." She looked damn surprised to be pain free. I grinned.

"Do 150 of those a day - air squats - and don't get back on that silly machine."

"Yes ma'am."

My mood immediately changed when all the ladies squatted correctly...they looked strong; they looked motivated. I stopped feeling tired and started feeling like I needed to work my tail off to get CrossFit methodology in our prison system.

And just like that, I was back to the old me. Time for a steak and bed.






Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Will work for equality

A friend's recent Facebook status update has stuck with me since Christmastime. It was short, to the point, and bothersome. He wrote that his young daughter was in the car with him when they saw a panhandler on the side of the road. She said to her dad that the man should go get a job because those are free. His response was "Enough said!" And, then, naturally, a bunch of likes and "Way to go kid!" comments and such.

The problem here isn't the kid, because ya know, she's a kid. Of course her views are shaped by her parents. It's that the dad never had a thought in his mind to let his child know that just maybe things weren't so easy and free for that human. It's starting her on the path to already looking down on another group of people, and the homeless are just so dang easy to look down on.

I won't debate the argument of whether the panhandler was homeless or not. I'm sure some are not. The vast majority, however, are. It blows my mind that there are folks out there that think people would make the choice to stand on the side of the road with a sign had they any other options. Anyway, back to the dad...

Homeless people do have some resources to help them get a job. Those come in the form of understaffed shelters with limited space and abilities. But, they can't just go to the local library and look up jobs on the Internet - you have to have a driver's license or a utilities bill to get a library card. They can't walk into a 7-11 to fill out an application for employment looking like dirty, hammered, dog shit either. I mean they could, they just wouldn't get hired.

And lest we forget, many of these people are homeless because of addiction or mental health issues. This is where society really loves to turn it into class warfare, because if you are poor and become homeless because of drugs or alcohol, it is your fault. If you are wealthy and dependent on drugs or alcohol, you have an addiction, and you can go to rehab, and it's a disease. We rarely look down on those who can afford rehabilitation in these instances. In fact, we celebrate them for getting out of the situation...when the only reason they can really get out is because they had the funds and support to make that happen.

I wish my friend's daughter had been told that maybe that man on the corner had a lot working against him when it came to employment and a life as privileged as she lives. I wish he had told her not everyone is allowed the same circumstances, but we can all help each other out.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Da-na-na-na-na-na-na-nah...ducktard!

With all the damn duck drama lately that I'm quite sure is mostly an attempt at a ratings boost for a cable TV show, people are dividing on social media like it's election season. I'm most pained by the rather insane interpretations of the ever-so-important First Amendment, but I'm also repulsed by the memes and commentary that go something along the lines of, "A redneck made a redneck comment about gays and blacks and everyone is surprised." Obviously, this is a mocking statement about how we shouldn't be shocked when someone we assume is an idiot acts like an idiot.

Oh good. Let's perpetuate stereotypes and make sure that like groups of people are never removed from that group. Let's make absolutely certain that we can keep them in their box that fits them so they're more easy to despise.

See the problem? Now, we've made it us versus them. Pretty sure there's not a single thing in the history of civilization that's worked out civilly when that's the take.

Some gazillionaire named Phil made some nasty comments about groups he wanted to remain in the "them" category. And, in true mob mentality fashion, he did it in the name of religion. If I were Christian, I'd be deeply offended that he used my faith to promote such revolting beliefs (though I'd defend his right to do so to the death...these are not contradicting statements). To excuse his hateful words because he's a "redneck" is to allow the narrow-minded belief to flourish. Somehow, it's ok because he "doesn't know better."

The not knowing better alibi is bullshit and makes my skin crawl. That's like hearing an elderly person use the word "nigger" and laughing it off because the old dickhead "didn't know better." Right. They've been alive for 80 years. Pretty sure that word has been racist and awful for all 80.

If you allow commentary that exists to do nothing but keep a particular group down, you're also a part of keeping them down with your inaction. Obviously I'm not talking about government intervention. Calm your tits. I'm talking about you - the one with the sense - not being a pussy and speaking out when an individual turns a matter into us versus them.

Because here's the thing - we aren't those groups. We aren't defined by religion, race, sexual orientation, or any other damn one thing, and being so complex is easily the most interesting thing about us.

I hope this Phil guy is an act, but whether he is or not, just look at how divisive folks got - over a racist, bigot, reality TV star. How can we be so quick to justify oppression with a lameass rationalization because we want to be on a side?

Stand up for each other, and stop sucking.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Do these skin-tight pants make my butt look big?

Are you losing your mind over the lululemon athletica founder's comments on thigh chafage? Does Chip Wilson just absolutely grind your gears and you will no longer support this awful company? Can you fully explain to me why what Wilson said was "wrong"?

I am lululemon's target market if you don't count my tax bracket - healthy, active, [white] woman. I have spent thousands of dollars on their product, and their damn pants are the best workout pants that have ever been invented. The britches work for my body and soothe my slightly narcissistic side as well, since said pants also look good and fit the glutes well. 

My thighs touch...at all times. They touch when I stand, walk, run, do yoga...my thighs are fucking strong. I have no issue with Wilson's comments.

He said the fabric may pill a bit when your thighs rub together. Yes, this is how fabric works unless you put leather patches on it. I mean, I had that on the knees of my riding breeches because that's where those made contact with the saddle...pressure does equal visible wear. 

Do many people tend to wear workout pants that are too small for them? Absolutely. Will this stretch out the fabric and make it easier to wear down and possibly become more sheer? Absolutely. Nike pants do the same thing, folks...last pair of Nike tights I bought were $80 - bout the same as lulu - same little sweatshop fingers stitching those too...are we only mad because some dude pointed out the obvious?

Wilson's comments on breast cancer being linked to women's prominence in the workplace have also been taken out of context. Here's his original blog post on that. So, it's not well-written, but other than that, he's not too far off base when speaking in generalities. People called him sexist for this piece. I'm a feminist. I take no shit. I wasn't offended, and I didn't find him to be speaking poorly of women. If anything, what I got from it is that men evolve slowly (der).

Here's the problem I have with the lu - I bought their stuff in the early 2000s when everything was made in Canada, and that shit lasted forever. The quality has gone down because they've grown so big so fast that they outsourced to keep up with production. It's the WalMart effect. However, lulu has still managed to have a better product than anyone else. Yes, their Ayn Rand worship is a bit much. Yes, they don't target to larger bodies. But, isn't this the founder's prerogative? I can think of heaps of stores that don't carry sizes over a 12 that aren't receiving the same wrath as lulu.

So, what exactly are you mad about? I hope your day is good, and that your 'check engine' light in your Lexus doesn't come on while you grab a latte on your way to barre class.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Dang, I love this.

Thank you, Huff Post editors, for not changing my tone and leaving this interview exactly as I responded.

Feel free to share, friends. I'm pretty pumped about this one:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rob-schware/prison-yoga_b_3861245.html