Thursday, August 31, 2006

"... desire toward adventures ..."

“Life ought to be a struggle of desire toward adventures whose nobility will fertilize the soul.” ~Rebecca West (1892 – 1983)




I’ve started and stopped many a blog post this week.

But I keep coming back to a question I was asked last Friday.

Routine useless background: Duckie and I were about to do our weekly raid of the grocery store in hopes of some yummies for Friday supper when I saw a terrifying vision that inspired an immediate call to Coz.

Luckily she picked up the phone. I don’t think I could have kept this to myself, and Duckie doesn’t have the proper frame of reference to appreciate the fashion monstrosity that I saw in the parking lot that evening.

She was tallish – I’m guessing around 5’ 7” – and she looked taller in the clothes. The cut of the shirt was pretty modern – a nice light sleeveless button-down with an unobtrusive gathered accent down the front. It was the color that was truly horrifying. I don’t think “bilious” quite describes it, but it’s pretty close. I’ve seen transmission fluid that was more attractive. If I’m not correct, the last year I saw that color on someone (as opposed to leaking out of a car) was 1985.

Then we get to the jeans – black stonewashed, form-fitting, but not in a bad way, until you hit the knees, at which point they hugged her shins to create the classic 80s carrot-shaped look. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if they were stirrup pants.

The shoes were the most modern thing about her – the heels, although easily five inches, were slightly blocked, but I got the impression that if she could have managed stilettos, she would have.

And really none of that would have screamed Bon Jovi groupie! at me, if it hadn’t been for the hair. Normally I would have appreciated a lovely fall like that – black, kinda frizzy from a perm (which I’ve always sort of liked), and falling right down to her skinny ass. Topped off by bangs that stood five inches off her forehead. Maybe she was trying to balance out the shoes, I dunno.

Naturally, the first person I thought of to call about the unpleasant 80s flashback I was having was Coz.

She commiserated with me on the revival of leggings*, stirrup pants, ridiculously high-waisted pants and slouch boots, then said, “So how was the search for yoga pants?” I told her I had finally decided on a couple of pairs of – get this – pajama pants, because they were the only ones that fit well enough to do yoga for three hours at a stretch (no pun intended. Really.)

Before I got too manic about the workshop again, she interrupted me and said, “Yeah, but you’re doing this for you, right?”

Well… yeah. Why else would I be doing it?

It caught me off guard. It confused me – and it still does. I haven't actually questioned the why of it. I just know I have to be there.

It remains to be seen what, exactly, I want to get out of the weekend. It seems now to be something to work toward – an accomplishment of sorts – like an opening night. But it’s not – or rather, it shouldn’t be. I’m a novice yogini, so this will be something like floating in deep water just to keep from choking on my own inexperience. In some ways I’m in a really good place for this. I don’t have a lot of prejudice about what I know – actually, I’m pretty sure I don’t know shit – which is, of course, its own prejudice. This workshop will be a beginning, not an ending, not by a long shot.

Some of these gurus like Kest are treated and thought of just like rock stars – I’m sure I’ve made the same comparison over the last couple of months. Then there’s the added complication of setting teachers up as parental figures. I’ve done this before with other spectacular teachers – feeling like they’re so far above me they must be something close to God.

But you know, I really think that perception would be a seriously awful waste of energy on my part. I have this opportunity to participate in an intensive learning experience with a person (two people, actually – I’m pretty sure Stephanie Keach will be there, too) whose attitudes and experiences are starting to shape my own in a positive way – in an environment that I find soothing and safe.

So I dunno – what do I want to get out of this? Maybe it’s not so much that, as figuring out how I want to feel afterwards, and what obstacles might get in the way.

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Duckie’s feeling much better. She was totally distracted from her ear by her best friend nailing her in the eye with a ball yesterday afternoon at school. Apparantly D-Boy has a hell of a right arm, and fantastic aim on top of it. Fun stuff. She’s fine, though, and we actually had a good evening and a nice morning. Grandparents are coming into town this weekend for the Apple Festival, and I don’t think she’ll have much of a black eye left by the time the cameras start clicking.

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*Don't get me wrong. Leggings certainly have their place in my world - under long skirts, mostly, during the winter. Under jeans, camping in the cold. Best things in the world. And there's nothing better I can wear to run than my screamingly shiny spandex/polyester bike shorts. But I would never been seen in public wearing them. Ever. Unless the rest of my wardrobe was, say, eaten by my cat. In which case I would send Brian to the store to get me sweatpants instead.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

One good thing about the 80's fashion is that the shirts actually cover your belly. My advice is to stock up on the jeans and pants you like now before you can no longer find them (although thrift stores may be full of them before long).

tammy

Kiki said...

I love leggings too -- they're really nice in the winter, worn under a dark-toned sarong. But maybe that's just me; I'm unwilling to admit that it's winter and therefore give up my sarongs. Anyway, I totally agree re: the 80s look. It was the most poisonously ugly decade in recent history, making even the 70s look fabulous. Please, fashion folks, don't bring it back...or I'll be spending all my money in thrift shops.

James said...

Guess I'll have to go diggin' in the thrift stores now for a "member's only" jacket.