Maybe it’s a testament to my academic endeavors that I’ve never really understood the term “hump day.” To me, I never cared about how far into the week I was until it was Friday, and the weekend was actually upon me. Now, however, in this final week of oppressive unemployment, I am absolutely flummoxed that I have managed to make it this far, and am currently–as I type–treating myself to a congratulatory beer for having survived the first half of this mind-numbing week.
I started this week so optimistic. I was going to continue my training of Suki. I was going to spend hours at doggy paradise every day, and read all of the books I’ve been meaning to read. Well, I’ve done all of those things. The problem is, in an attempt to condition my mind and body to starting my job next week, I am waking up no later than 8 a.m. every day, meaning that by 1:30 p.m., I’m done. I have literally run out of things to do.
To really illustrate what a turn for the worst my unending free time has taken, you should know that today I spent two hours at IKEA. Willingly. I don’t know if you know this about me, but IKEA makes me immediately crumble into a shell of my former self.
One time, Sarah and I went for an innocent day of apartment shopping for our first college homes, and she threatened to put me into the children’s daycare center if I couldn’t pull it together. Which, despite my efforts, I simply could not do. Thankfully, she settled on ignoring me as I clutched her hand like a small, lost child seeing clowns for the first time, instead of subjecting the actual small, lost children to me. So, again, the fact that I chose to spend my day at IKEA really signifies that things are TOUGH for me right now. I am simply not conditioned to have this much time on my hands.
So, how am I handling this? Well, to answer that question, I must ask you a question. Did you know that Sarah has quite a few fitness DVDs? Because she does. Granted, not all of them were purchased by her. Some were gifts, some were unclaimed by roommates, and at least one of them was brought into the apartment by me. Still-the fact remains that at any given time, there are probably five-plus workout DVDs in our home.
Last night, I made the decision to work my way through these DVDs in the coming days. I thought I would start off with “Fat Free Yoga,” which sounded like a good ice breaker. I am not flexible AT ALL (part of the reason why I’ve never tried yoga before), but I thought the fact that it was “Fat Free” might mean that it was geared more towards aerobics than stretching, and I could maybe keep up. What I did not anticipate was that this would be not so much a workout DVD, but instead a spiritual journey.
I got onto the floor, unrolled my newly re-appropriated now yoga mat on the floor and got ready to sweat. Instead I was greeted with a welcoming screen that read “SPIRITUAL TUNE-UP.” Which was a bit of a departure from what I was anticipating, but then again, I’m no yogi. The voiceover–which, oddly, was not the woman on the screen but instead a man who remained unseen the entire video–greeted me and gave me my meditation.
Yep. Meditation. And not just the let’s sit here in silence and let our spirits align kind, but the let’s straight up chant kind. Listen, I’ve read “Eat Pray Love” and I’m not afraid to admit that I cried my way through the film version too, but this whole mantra thing is a little much for me. Still, I tried. I attempted to quiet the giggles that were doing their best to throw off my positive energy, but they were unfaltering. After about three minutes of this futile battle, I conceded that there was no way I was going to be able to recite the mantra aloud, with my dog curled up in front of me and my roommate trying to sleep mere feet away, so I skipped to the next section.
Thankfully, this section only asked for silent meditation, which I was happy to do. Sitting on my mat, with my wrists on my knees, I felt relaxed and happy. I started to think maybe there really was something to this whole spiritual yoga thing. But then, the breathing exercises started. Once again, I thought I had some grasp on what yoga meant, but this really took me on a new path. First, I was instructed to remain cross-legged as I pumped my arms from an open, hug like position to a close, about one foot apart in front of you position. At the same time, you were supposed to inhale on one syllable and exhale on another. I did this for literally four minutes. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but try doing that right now and see how far you get before you check the clock again. For me, it was 45 seconds.
Next, I stood up, and swung my arms in a figure-eight shape while inhaling and exhaling and leaping from one foot to another. This one was a lot easier, and I found myself starting to enjoy myself. Until my dog started barking. Why did she bark? Ah, it seems I’ve missed a critical fact in my story. We don’t have curtains. Sure, in the bedrooms we do, but as of yet, our living room remains unmistakably visible to the outside world. So, as you may have guessed by now, Suki was barking because I had an audience.
First, it was just a passerby who, naturally, got distracted by my huffing and puffing and leaping around my living room. He moved on as quickly as he came when he realized I had spotted him, and I chugged along. It was harder to recover when I turned to find an entire tour bus, full of post retirement transports from Orlando (the side of the bus informed me) all with their noses pushed to the left windows.
So I stopped. I felt I had no choice. In fact, it might have been this very humiliation that inspired my ill-fated trip to IKEA today. You see, among the many things that I needed to procure, were curtains. Of course, once I returned home and assembled the first set, I quickly discovered that despite being advertised as opaque, these curtains are no such thing.
I guess “Carmen Electra’s Strip Tease” will have to wait until another day.