From Kyle -- Welcome to my blog. I hope my stories bring a smile to your face.
Wait…is this Yoga or Tennis?
Last week I was in Las Vegas, visiting my sister and her family. While there, my sister invited me to her yoga class. I agreed to go. Now, y’all know me—I’m not the most serious person…but I TRIED to take this class seriously. It’s important to my sister and I don’t want to ruin it for her. I’m not going to sugar-coat this—I’m not good at yoga. I’m extremely inflexible. I have very tight hamstrings…and pretty much everything else is tight, too. Before I arrived in Vegas, my sister suggested that I go on a date with the yoga instructor. “Hey, when you come out here…you should go out with my yoga instructor. She’s really nice, and really pretty.” Truth be told, I wasn’t immediately sold on the idea. I’m really not a fan of blind dates. People are wonderful—but blinded by their own emotions.
Friend: “OMG! My friend is so awesome! You two would get along great. You should definitely go out with so-and-so! It’d be sooo cool! We could double date!”
Me: “Oh yeah? Well tell me about this friend.”
Friend: “Her name is Hog-face McGoo. She’s from Slagthorn, so her face is 90% razor-sharp teeth. But…oh, my gosh, her eyes! They are sooo…beady and jet black. When she looks at you, it’s absolutely terrifying. She has a GREAT personality. It’s very…there’s a Slagthorn term for it that loosely translates to: wet-blanket. Also, she loves to travel and laugh. I’ve known her for years!”
Now, I want to be clear: one person’s Hog-Face McGoo is another person’s Angel-Goddess. I really do believe there is someone for everyone. But, that’s what I imagine whenever someone tries to set me up with their BFF who is just “so awesome.” I’m not saying people don’t occasionally hit one out of the park. I’m just saying that I have trust issues after being hit with the bat.
I digress. Back to the story. My sister encouraged me to look at this yoga instructor’s Instagram page. I’m not really an Instagram guy. I have an account…and I mostly forget to use it. My sister had to instruct me how to even find this yoga person’s page and then “follow” her. Just the term “following on Instagram” sounds very stalkerish to me. If this yoga instructor was like, “Oh, you follow me on Instagram?” I was going to say, “I follow you LOTS of places. Instagram is just one that is socially acceptable.” I didn’t get to use that line. <sad face>
So, after seeing this yoga person’s Instagram page, I was immensely impressed. (I’m going to refer to her as “YL” for: Yoga Lady. I’m not going to give you her name to protect her privacy.) The first thing you want to know is: Is she pretty? Well, yeah…she is, but that’s not why I was impressed. Her Instagram page is full of her doing these very complicated yoga poses. Stuff that would, without a doubt, break me. Like, if I did these poses, YL would be like:
“Bend this leg. Keep this leg straight. Twist your hips forward. Chin up. Now keep your back straight…Oh…was that…was that your hip? Did it just pop out? That’s weird…I’ve never seen anyone’s elbow bend that way doing this pose. Okay, THAT was definitely not a good sound. Where did that sound originate? Your back? I think we should stop. Okay…well, coming OUT of this pose should definitely NOT cause all of those additional issues. Jesus! I…I’m not qualified to…unbend that, or pop that back in. I’m going to get help.”
So, at my sister’s suggestion I did some light Instagram stalking. I looked through a few photos, and thought: Well, she’s a few years younger than me, but she’s within my dating-age range. So, I told my sister to set it up. Now, I can only imagine what my sister told YL. It was probably something like:
“OMG! My brother is AWESOME! He’s super-funny, and very handsome. He’s kind of a cross between Matt Damon in the Jason Bourne films, and Chris Pratt in the Guardian of the Galaxy films. Only…handsomer and funnier.”
I decided to reach out to her on my own via Facebook. I sent her a single private message. I basically said, “Hey, I’ll be in town on these dates. My sister is trying to set us up. If you’d like to chat and get to know each other a little BEFORE I get to Vegas, that’d be the bee’s knees.” I never heard from her. In retrospect, I feel like she may have been a little intimidated by my sister’s probable description of me. You know, the whole better-looking-than-Matt Damon, funnier-than-Chris Pratt…it can be very intimidating for some people. I didn’t pay much attention to it. No biggie.
I arrive in Vegas. I had an interesting flight…but that’s a story for another time. The weekend was nice and relaxing. Then, Monday after work, my sister takes me to yoga. The studio is warm. It’s like 80 degrees, and quiet. SUPER quiet. There were eight or nine students in the class, and two instructors, neither of whom was YL. My sister introduces me to the instructors and lets them know that I’m a beginner. This was a very good move on her part because the instructor, while very nice and competent, still felt the need to use terms that were unfamiliar to me. To be clear, yoga terms sound a little like a child making up words.
“Kyle, do you know Shama-lama-ding-dong?” asked the instructor.
“Uh…no,” I said. She proceeds to show me the pose.
“Oh, you mean bend over and touch my toes? Yeah, I know how to do that.”
You can imagine how the rest of the class went for me. It was pretty much an instructor showing what they wanted me to do, and me attempting to imitate the pose as best as I could with the body of a man wrapped in a full-body cast.
About fifteen minutes after class started, YL arrived. She didn’t look exactly like her photos, so for a brief moment, I wasn’t sure it was her. Then I unwrapped myself from whatever pose I was in, the blood rushed back to my brain, and I was able to once again think. ‘Ah! That’s YL! Okay. She’s cute.’ End of transmission…new pose…blood constricted…try not to pass out.
After class, I thanked the instructors for their help. I was pretty sweaty. I can’t be sure because there was no mirror, but I imagine I looked like a cooked lobster, and probably sweated more than a cool drink on a warm day. YL spoke to my sister about her poses, and some homework, and then we all talked briefly about some good restaurants in the area. That was it. Class ended. My sister and I left. In the car, on the drive home, the discussion began.
“Well? What’d you think?” asked my sister.
“About the class, or the instructor?” I asked.
“The class was good. It’s difficult, and clearly, I’m not ever going to be good at this.”
“Well, yoga isn’t about being good. It’s about self-discovery, and … <to be honest, I stopped listening here. This speech went on for a while. It was a good three or five more minutes about blah, blah, blah self-improvement, blah, blah, blah not a competition…I’m pretty sure she mentioned something about shock-rocks and maybe something about the yoga god, Cracken?...I’m not sure>,” said Kari.
“Yup. I totally agree with all of those things that you just said,” I said, nodding my head in agreement. I furrowed my brow and tried to make my face look like someone who pays attention to things.
“And what do you think of YL?”
“She’s pretty,” I said. That’s all I said. Nothing else.
“Well, she’s VERY busy. She’s teaching <insert some number> of classes here, and she does a lot of private lessons too. Plus she has to create lesson plans because she’s an instructor of instructors.” I may not be the brightest bulb, but I know when someone is trying to prepare me for bad news.
“Uh huh,” I said.
“I’m just saying…she’s busy. Plus she has a close group of friends that she likes to hang out with. I’m just not sure she has the time to date,” said Kari.
“Okay.” [Well, now I’m DEFINITELY going to ask her out.]
Fast forward to Thursday yoga. My nephew joined us. Fewer people in the class. Only five of students (including my sister, nephew, and me), and two instructors (YL and some other lady). Again, I’m trying my very best to take this seriously and not laugh…but occasionally, stuff happens and it’s not my fault.
“Hi, Kyle. Do you remember your poses?” asked YL.
“Noooo,” I said, slowly shaking my head and pursing my lips. YL smiled.
“Okay, let’s do: <insert the Sanskrit name for bendy-twisty>, followed by <insert Sanskrit name for turny-stretchy>”, she said and showed me the poses.
“Yup. Got it.” This is how the first half of the class went. Pose-by-pose, YL showed me what I needed to do. Like a monkey with bad form, I followed. Then, the second half of the class she says: “Now…start back with the first pose and do all the poses again.” Oh, wow! Did she really just do that? That was a mistake.
“Okay…I remember bend over and touch my toes was somewhere near the beginning…and turn sideways, like a triangle, and stretch out until it hurts was the last thing I just did. I do not remember the middle…like, at all.” YL smiled. I could tell my ineptitude was not frustrating for her at all. She took it in stride and showed me everything again. Patience truly is a virtue.
After class ended, I thanked her again for the instruction. She asked if we were going out to dinner or if we needed another recommendation. This was my chance.
“Hey, let me take you out on a date. We can go to one of your favorite restaurants,” I said…smooth as fuck. She smiled, but I could tell she wasn’t interested. I continued. “Before you answer, you should know my nephew looks up to me. The wrong answer could set him off. He could spiral out of control, falling into a deep depression, scarring him for life.”
She smiled even bigger. “I think he’ll be okay. I really can’t. I have lesson plans to do, and prep work for my other job.”
So, I was shot down. <insert sad face here> But, the thing is…this exercise wasn’t about getting the date. I already knew I was going to be shot down. So, why do it? Why go through with asking her out knowing that I was going to get shot down? Because she knew that I knew I’d be shot down…and I did it anyway. That takes guts. No guts, no glory. You have to be confident and brave to do that. I wasn’t cocky. I wasn’t disrespectful. I just wanted her to know that I’d ask her out DESPITE knowing I’d be turned down. I’m not running away with my tail between my legs, and I’m not going to stalk this woman. I clearly lobbed the ball to her, and she missed. Maybe I’m not her cup of tea…maybe she really did want to go out but was truly too busy with work. I don’t know, and I don’t care. This match is over, but the game continues. We’re just…<what’s Sanskrit for “switching partners”?>.