By Sam Bondy
I drink, so this semester, I decided that as a panacea for my ailing-liver, I would endeavor to try hot, holistic, hipsteric yoga. Catharsis. Or so I thought.
As I entered “Yoga Body Shop” (the old place for all you noobies), near Wegmans, I felt terrified, like going to the doctor for a shot kind of terrified. I was with my good friend, Jake, a three-year yogic veteran, as if I wouldn’t look inflexible already. For those of you who haven’t met me, wise choice, but I’m pretty tall and lanky, and not in the wacky waving inflatable arm flaling tube man-way, but more Sheldon Cooper-esk. Thousands of years of evolution did not groom my gene pool for any damn-“asana”.
There are only a few essential items you need for hot yoga: undies, shorts, yoga-mat, hand towel and a bath towel to cover your mat from the deluge of sweat. Of course, this last part wasn’t explained to me, so I simply brought a hand towel. How hot could it be, right?
The class was set to start at 7, but obviously Jake and I got there around 6:57. During the car ride, I showed Jake my towel and he started to die laughing. The car is swerving side to side and I’m freaking out trying to find out what’s so funny. If we’re gonna die, I wanted to go out with a smile on my face. When I found out, there was no smile… As we rush in to change, I asked our instructor for a bath towel. He was happy to oblige. I was in the clear on that front. When I went into the back where Jake was hopping on one foot putting on his shorts, I dug into my backpack to find mine. I began to start rummaging, as I didn’t feel them anywhere. Oh no…
I told Jake what new horror I was facing and he began laughing hysterically, again. Thanks man. At this point, we hadn’t entered the hot room of death, but I was already sweating from embarrassment. I was wearing boxers and jeans. Our instructor walked by and I had a stroke of pure unintelligence. “Hey” I said, “I forgot my shorts.” He replied, “well I can’t lend you mine, I guess you can go in your underwear”. Great first yoga experience I was having.
As I opened the door to the yoga-room, which I could swear had printed on it, “abandon all hope, ye who enter here”, a gust of hot air battered my face. A disgusting, sweltering blast of heat. The kind you feel when you open an oven that has just finished preheating to 10,000°. No way I thought…
As I walked in, wearing nothing but my boxers, I realized I was the last one and that everyone was waiting on me. Thank Vishnu Jake saved me a spot. I quietly set up my area and adjusted my briefs. Class was about to begin.
Our instructor started us off by walking us through some “Sun Salutations”, I was pathetic. For those who live under a rock, yoga is full of gorgeous, curvy women. All 20 of them were privately laughing at my misery.
“It’s all in the hips”, as our instructor walked around “correcting” the ladies’ positions, it looked like a Friday night at the Rat. What a champ.
By now, I was drenched in sweat, running out of water and holding in laughter whenever the instructor said downward dog or happy baby (yes, I’m immature). And it didn’t help that one of the only guys in the class kept blurting out “ohhhh yeahhh” whenever we sat deeper into a pose.
The whole experience made me feel like I was in a movie, a terrible, sad movie that refuses to end. But needless to say, several weeks later, I am now a die-hard yoga fan and will continue to try to touch my toes until the end of my days.
I’ll be there next Monday so, if you want some comic relief come say hi.