Saturday, May 15, 2004

Too bad my teacher has been out of town. This has turned out to be week fairly full of practices. After doubling up on Wednesday, I did manage to get out of bed Thursday morning and into the 7:00 Improv class. I also made it out of work early enough on Friday afternoon to make it to the 5:30 Intro to Second Series class. I had to leave that class as everybody else was going into Savasana. I was due to be on call at 8:00 PM at a hospital about 30 miles away, so I couldn't indulge in the end of class reward. I got smoked at work, everybody just kept coming in and delivering, I got four or five hours of sleep, but never more than an hour and a half straight. I was up at 6:30 doing a delivery and then all my rounds, so when I got off at 8:00 AM, I didn't feel tired anymore. I was in my morning swing. So I decided to go ahead and go to the Saturday morning Improv class too.

I think I don't process short term memory well. I always have a hard time remembering exactly what it was that we did in a given Improv class. I am able to maintain a general sense of what we went over. But if I later try to recall the sequence of what we did, like if my wife asks for a detailed run down, I can't re-create it. Today in class, we did a short sequence of standing postures on the right side. When we switched over to do the other side, I couldn't remember the order with which we had done them. Plus, I used the wrong name for the pose when I asked the teacher which one we were supposed to be doing. The medical term for this malady is TMB syndrome--Too Many Birthdays.

The general upshot of all those Improv type classes over this week is that I got a lot of hip and groin work. I got plenty of reps at Samakonasana and Hanumanasana. I got in a couple of shots at doing the Eka Pada and Dwi Pada Sirsasanas. Plenty of backbending. Various other standing and arm balancing poses. Lots of chances to do "different" stuff. It was a good week. I didn't do much standard Ashtanga though. Wednesday night was the only full first series practice I've done in two weeks. Some weeks just work out that way.

A couple more folks from the studio are in or are on their way to Mysore. One got there a couple of weeks ago and one leaves for India tomorrow. A few other Ashtanga folks we've gotten to know one way or another will be there soon too. I keep asking people to look into how going to Mysore with kids works out for the people they meet there. Haven't heard much detail yet but I gather people have done it without the sky falling down. We keep this "just maybe" pipe dream going that we'll get there someday. The biggest hurdles are risk for the kids and time. As those who have gone keep telling us, the only thing to do is to just buy a ticket. Once the commitment has been made, I've been told, details have a way of getting worked out and the multitude of reasons why it's not practical or feasible or even possible tend to evaporate.

One negative for going nowadays is that it's really not the kind of experience that our predecessors had, even for those who went just four or five years ago. The process sounds so much more formulaic now, not the more personal, one-on-few teacher/student setting we've heard described to us by our teachers. It would still be a watershed experience, just different than what we've always envisioned it's like.

I couldn't think of anything good to ask for in Improv today. I had a couple of ideas but they didn't seem right for the group. I don't want to ask for stuff that I can do readily. Nothing there for me. I also see no point in asking to do stuff that might seem cool to try but that none of us, except the teacher, really has a chance in hell of doing. The usual litany of requests, "hips", "shoulders", groins", gets old sometimes. I'm sure the teachers wish we could be more creative. It's just hard to come up with stuff that we haven't done already done a whole lot, that would be intriguing to try, and that we are actually capable of doing. After thinking about it some today, I've got a couple of suggestions I'll throw out to see if she'll bite, pending the class size and make up.

My eyes are burning. I need to take a shower. I never showered after class this morning. Hopefully nobody in the movie theater this afternoon was overwhelmed. We (my wife, my son and I) went to see "Troy", an awful attempt at making an action/chick flick. Action as in lots of hacking and chopping in big and small battle scenes. Chick flick as in Brad Pitt, the Legolas guy and all the other eye candy for the girls. A bad attempt at doing what worked for the crossover crowd in "Titanic" and "Cold Mountain". Brad does wear dresses pretty well though, I must say.

Second Series tomorrow. We'll have to see which practice shows up. I'm not expecting much. I asked for extra butter on my popcorn and she gave it to me. Sludge central.

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