Yoga, Jersey-style.

Sometimes I practice at a yoga studio in New Jersey, one not above a  “video” store. They teach hot yoga, but it’s more of an Om-oriented place.

My favorite teacher quote came from Jagadisha, who also happens to be the studio owner. We were in some posture that was pure evil, probably triangle, and he was walking around adjusting postures, empathizing with our pain. “I know,” he said. “I wish I could sit on my couch and eat cake and it would make me one with everything. But it doesn’t work that way.”


Last week I left the house after getting the kids off to school and brought my yoga clothes with me so I could catch a class in the middle of my day. I changed clothes in the studio’s changing room. I pulled on the pants.

They felt strange.

I tugged. I looked down.

These were not my yoga pants.

I have to back up a minute and talk about laundry. Everyone participates in laundry at our house. I learned early on that I should wash my clothes separately from the kids’ clothes and also never make them fold my stuff. Otherwise they steal it.

It isn’t just me they steal from. They all steal from each other. If a sibling has somehow managed to skate out of laundry detail and another sibling is folding their shirt, the laundry-working sibling considers it well within their rights to swipe the shirt for the next wearing. In everyone’s defense, there are a damn lot of clothes in our house and we don’t always know whose is whose. If you’re not there to speak up for your clothes, it’s your own fault.

I’m not morally superior to this practice myself, in theory. It’s just that I don’t actually fit in to any of their clothes, a fact I am reminded of when random kid clothes end up in my dresser and I don’t pay attention and try to put them on.

Which is how it came to be that yoga pants, size zero and belonging to #1 ended up in my closet, in my bag, and on my size eight ass at power Vinyasa last Monday.

Had I five extra minutes, I would have bought a new pair in the appropriate size from the studio. As it was, I didn’t, so I Om’d- for the space-age-stretchiness of synthetic fabrics, and Om’d some more that the seams would hold up, and took the Divine Guidance that came as a small, still voice inside me that said to sit in the back of the room. Or, more correctly, try not to sit.

I had a pretty stressful downward facing dog when the teacher came over to adjust my posture.

But then I remembered that I was in Jersey, and if you’re a woman and don’t wear clothes that are several sizes too small for you at least twice a year, they kick you out of the state (though you can usually bribe someone to get back in).

Have you made any. . .large mistakes lately? What can get you kicked out of your state?


Why I Hate The Ferris Wheel

My town has a street fair every fall. It’s pretty cool: a typical small suburban affair with a few rides, crab cake sandwiches, kettle corn, funnel cake, zeppoles, and more ways for a kid to spend your money than there are orange jackasses on Jersey Shore.

The first year we lived here, we all went to the street fair together. The kids had only been living with us for a couple of weeks. They didn’t have many friends yet; they didn’t have their stuff from their old house yet. #5 was a small four-year-old and I carried him most of the time. The first thing we did was get cotton candy and I remember being surprised how fast he became covered in blue stick. Luckily, one of the churches had their bathrooms open and we were able to hose him down before he became permanently stuck to a lamppost- or worse, the street. I remember standing in line for ride tickets behind a guy who was wearing a Scissorfight T-shirt. I asked him about it; turned out he was friends with the band. He was there with his kids too. I questioned the wisdom of each of us being involved with children.

This year #5 was the only one with me. The other kids made appearances as they met up with us for money or food and to hang out with their little brother. The two oldest girls were working booths, #1 as an employee and #2 for high school volleyball. I was still a walking wallet, but everyone sought out one-on-one time with #5.

#3 and #5 on something that spins too much for me
#2 and #5 on something else that I won't ride.
#5 blocking me from eating his funnel cake


The Ferris Wheel.

Originally built for the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago by George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr, variations of it have been tormenting amusement-seekers ever since. I don’t like the Ferris Wheel because the first time I ever went on one I was pretty young, maybe about six. I went with my sister and the cars on this particular Ferris Wheel were enclosed and capable of spinning all the way around. You could flip your car independently of (and simultaneously with) the Ferris Wheel spin. Two spins for the price of one.

Due to the inefficient nature of the Ferris Wheel, riders often get stuck at points around the spin as other riders are let off and on. My sister and I had the misfortune of being stuck at the top for an extended period of time while our car was upside down. Yes, both ways we could spin were stuck. We were two little girls by ourselves stuck upside down eight billion feet above sea level. That’s like, a vortex of stuck suck right there.

Sometimes you remember things and then you wonder if you’re really remembering it right or not. While #3 and #5 were waiting in line for and riding the Ferris Wheel, I called my sister to corroborate my memory.

While the kids were on this:

I was looking at this:

My foot, safely on the ground. Right side up.

My sister remembers it the same way. She doesn’t like Ferris Wheels either.

Perhaps this is a good time to lay my X-Files theory on you. The X-Files is hands down my all time favorite TV show. I own all the DVDs (purchased, obviously, before kids). My theory is that for any situation, any occurance, anything that crosses your mind, there’s an X-Files episode about it [I have the same theory regarding Jonathan Richman songs]. Sadly, I’m not enough of a hard-core geek to know all the actual titles of the X-Files episodes, but I can fill in the plots.

Anyway. The rides at the street fair remind me of the X-Files episode with the bad santa at the creepy holiday amusement park where Mulder was sure he would find his sister but instead they found lots and lots of dead children.

On second thought, perhaps this wasn’t a good time to lay my X-Files theory on you. Probably, I could have kept that to myself for at least a while longer. You were bound to find out at some point though.

You tell me, aren’t they kinda creepy?


Eh, maybe it’s just me.

What do you say- carnie rides: creepy or not creepy? Do you do the Ferris Wheel?

Mr. Contradictory Answers the Question

I’m in the bathroom, doing my makeup, trying to get ready for work. #5 runs in.

#5: Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

He’s never asked this before.

Me: Well, that’s the question, isn’t it? Nobody knows.

#5: Nobody?

The Chicken.

Me: Nobody.

#5: Really.

I look at him. He’s totally channeling all of his teen sisters right now and has the sarcasm and the look down perfectly. This is not the answer he’s looking for. Also, he doesn’t believe me.

#5: Nobody?

Me: Yeah, no one knows. I mean there are all these scientific papers and stuff, but for every one that says it’s the egg, another one says it’s the chicken. So no one knows. For real.

I go back to putting on mascara.

#5: You know, when you open your mouth and mash your chin into your neck like that you look weird.

(runs out of bathroom)

He’s right, of course. I do look weird.

(runs back in bathroom)

#5: Well, which one do you think it was?

The Egg.

Me: Mmm. I think maybe it was the chicken.

#5: I think it was the egg.

(runs out of bathroom)

Of course he thinks it’s opposite of whatever I think.

(runs back in bathroom)

#5: It was the chicken.

Me: Yeah?

#5: Definitely the chicken.

Me: You mean I was right?

#5: No. I mean it had to be the chicken because how could an egg just randomly come to earth?

I picture a spaceship, piloted by a solo egg. He won’t admit he’s agreeing with me, so I switch tactics, because I can be stubborn too.

Me: Well, what do they teach you in Sunday school? That God is all-powerful, right?

Solely by the kindness of some of our excellent friends, the kids go to Sunday School pretty much every week.

Me: If he can make a chicken, surely he could make a self-hatching egg one time, right?

#5: {silence}

I’m totally not playing fair. He has no problem contradicting me, but stops short of contradicting God. It’s the entire reason I played the God card.

Me: He made Adam, right? So an egg is like, no big deal.

#5: Who’s Adam?

Me: Seriously?

#3, passing by: Wait, what did he ask?

Me: Who’s Adam.

#3: Isn’t it, like, Adam and Eve or something?

Me: {sigh} Yes. Yes it is.

#5: It was the chicken.

(runs out of bathroom)