The yoga videos I watch have become the Devil’s game of Twister. Yesterday, the nice yoga lady stood in the Colorado wilderness and told me to adopt a squat like a frog. Fine. “Next,” she said, “it’s time to snuggle your shoulder.” Now I’ve learned that in her directions, “snuggle” almost always means that you stick some part of your body where it doesn’t belong. “Snuggle your right shoulder,” she said, “into your right knee pit. Just slide it on in there.” I tried this. Actually, I did it pretty well. I laughed from where I squatted, wearing my leg like a backpack. “Next,” she said, “press your hands together in prayer.” Right. “Now,” she said, “while keeping your right shoulder and leg bound [her words], use your left leg to lift yourself into a one-legged stance.” On the television, she did that. “This,” she said from her scrunch, “is the beautiful bird of paradise with a broken wing.”

Dearies. The word “broken” is right there in the title. I admit that I tried this. I hoisted myself onto my leg for a half second. And during that instant, time froze the way it does on the Dukes of Hazzard. And I could hear Waylon Jennings say, “Folks, what do you think she broke more of? Bones or furniture?”

The fact was that I came of out the pose too fast to break anything. And what prompted me, other than Waylon, was the thought of my starting to fall, and not being able to detangle myself before landing in a deflating ball of Meggie. 

In real life, I now lay on the floor, unscathed, while the yoga lady breathed from her contortion. I sighed. I could hear my mother, from thousands of miles away. “And did I raise you,” she said, “to do everything the television says?”

(Originally posted April 1, 2016)

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