Addiction stares us all in the face. It has been glamorized as of late by young Hollywood's dalliance with stints @ Promises Malibu or AA.
A couple of good friends are casualties of the pleasure principle. Marisa K. and Louie G. are both dear to me as tight friends from back in the day . They were both around at different points in my life to show me where the good times were. Well, Marisa is now wanted for felony and is endeavoring to check into rehab for the third time.
Louie, who has never worked a day in his life , the epitome of a PHD ( Papa Has Dough ) , is in the darkest hole one can dig oneself in. He is a suspect in a murder over inheritance. The scuttlebutt is that he was high on shabu ( crystal meth) when he did the deed.
Marisa used to argue that I had swapped my party mode for a new addiction , yoga. All I can say to that is I am grateful for yoga's creating the willingness to confront one's demons .
When I first read his title , the first thought that came to mind was upper armature development from vinyasa or chatturanga , as in " big guns ". Nope, Oswald means guns as in weapons of singular destruction. Admittedly, yoga does have that spiritual warrior vibe going on , ( think virabhadrasana 1-3 ) .
Here's the disconnect though :
"Later that day, I took a restorative yoga class. Shooting guns and taking yoga on the same day was the biggest “You got chocolate in my peanut butter!” moment I’ve had so far in my life. Guns and yoga are French fries dipped in a milkshake. Scotch and ginger ale. Elvis Costello’s “This Year’s Model” after a bad breakup. Reruns of “Law and Order” and having no life: they’re good together.
You shoot better when you realize that your soul is a leaf falling through time, and that work shouldn’t equal struggle. And yoga never aligns you with the universe better than when your forearm is still tingling from the buck and recoil of a .357 bullpup.
Someone needs to open a combination shooting range and yoga studio. I’m serious. Maybe I should do it. Hose off a few clips of Glaser safety slugs, then see how deep you can go into Warrior II. The murder rate would go down. No, wait — it would stay the same, but people would realize it’s all part of a bigger plan. Or, no, it would go up, because people would realize the transitory nature of existence, and that everything that has happened or is going to happen is always happening someplace forever, so why not put a slug in that dude’s head who won’t stop talking during “300”? "
And here is Oswald perpetuating stereotypes and / or overcompensating :
" I was the only guy in yoga class. In fact, I was the only non-soccer mom in class ".
Evolution : Asia Yoga Conference will be held in Hong Kong from June 1st to 4th. As Asia's largest yoga conference , Evolution is dedicated to serving the growing interest of Yoga in the region. 40 of the world's greatest teachers will share their knowledge through a vast diversity of styles.
Some of the gurujis and performers in attendance : Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, David Life & Sharon Gannon ( Jivamukti NYC) , Shiva Rea, Gabriela Bozic ( Jivamukti Munchen ) , Ana Forrest, Krishna Das , Mark Whitwell and many more -
South Beach is in the throes of the annual Winter Music Conference , a gathering where any international Supastah DJ worth their decks debuts new mixes & networks at the various clubs & hotels. Some of the mix masters slated to perform @ various parties include Venice Cali resident Junkie XL, Deep Dish, Juan Atkins, Sasha & Digweed, Kruder / Dorfmeister and more.
Our friend & fellow yogi Mike is hosting an event on Friday , 8 PM, March 23rd : OHM @ The Standard for those who need to take a breather from all the partying.
Free your body & cool your mind at the end of each week with yoga & spa bathing immersion ( swimsuits required , ie. European style bathing only allowed at the beach ) . Join our team of yogis, DJs & live sitar music . Stretch, steam,soak, soar -
Turbulence in life is always a sure thing. An ex used the code name " air pockets " in an effort to make light of them.
When hit by the bumps, I've found that it is always best to retreat and seek refuge . A couple of spots that have not failed me are Zeros in Malibu ( when I had time to surf ) and the point off Pali Park.Just looking out at the ocean will make everything alright.
The Surya studio @ Exhale Venice can now be added to the shortlist. The vibe & energy of the room emanates peace . Shiva Nataraj stands guard from the raised altar. John Sahakian's early evening class on Saturday's is an opportunity to withdraw into one's self . It is quite fluid & contemplative with an emphasis on pranayama and softening into the asanas. When peforming adjustments, there was a very gentle nature to them. He exhorts the class to use the practice as a way to connect with the Divine .
To drive the point home, his last statement prior to entering savasana was " You are safe here ". And with the bhajan " Gopala Govinda " playing softly in the background, it truly was -
Danurasana picked duo Pablo & his youngest son FunBoy ( Yep , I used to be a FunBoy too back in the day. With a name like that, you will be popular with the peeps ) as her star yogis of the month .
Here's what Pablo had to say :
For Bunny and me.. yoga has made a great difference in our lives. It has made us strong, both physically and mentally. I guess I have found something that I have been looking for.. and it's yoga! I have done many sports activities but nothing comes close to yoga in terms of fulfillment and relaxation!
My father ( aka GK / the Gipsy King ) was rushed to the emergency room early Tuesday AM for a recurrence of pancreatic pains. Since then , I have been in constant contact with my mother via SMS / text and email. A family friend who had just arrived in LA with presents from my folks was taken aback by this news as she had just had lunch with them in Makati the previous Sunday.
I have been communicating the benefits of a dedicated yoga practice to my parents for several years . Our family is no stranger to yoga, as my grandmother, ever the trend leader, had us attending yoga classes in her lanai conducted by Manolo Rosado, when we were just kids. The biggest influence on my Mom currently is the book " The Law of Attraction : The Secret ". It has been helping her immensely to deal with my father's current situation in a positive manner.
So, my intentions during practice this week have shifted towards my parent's well-being. With this in mind, I needed to cap Friday evening with either class or kirtan. Vytas B. was subbing for Ashley Turner 's 6 PM class , and it turned out to be quite the journey.
Dermot , a classmate & kirtan walla , started the evening off with a distinct Celtic inflected rendition of the bhajan, " Hey Ma Durga " . Durga is known as the mother of the universe , the slayer of the ego. Another maternal reminder -
The theme of the evening's class was long & deep holds , an average of 2 minutes per asana. The linked floor series went from janu sirsasana, dandasana, paschimotasana, upavistha / supta badha konasana , and every guy's favorite hip opener , dwi pada rajakapotasana aka double pigeon or Patanjali's revenge.The sensations these asanas generated coupled with the emphasis on the duration of exhalations & inhalations created a powerful " eye-of-the-storm " focus in the studio.
It was also great to hang-out after the intense session with a couple of fellow practitioners & travellers.
Simon, a photographer based in Rio de Janeiro , had an interesting take on the experience. As a self-described " Type A " personality, having to stay still for minutes and just OBSERVE was a welcome change from strenuous vinyasas.
Vytas B's special friend, Ivana M., could not be further from the character she played , Valenka, in Casino Royale . She is a soulful yogini who has been to quite a number of countries on location shoots. We share a fondness for the Manila Mandarin Oriental Hotel. This class was such a gift -
The New York Times has been doing a great job of keeping men's yoga on everyone's radar . Alright, when will the Los Angeles Times catch up ?
There was a fluff piece yesterday entitled : Pants for Men Who Do Yoga. Here is one of the more practical picks -
72K PILLAR DRAWSTRING SHORT $39, 72K. Mr. Burgasser ( an Ashtanga teacher ) , who usually practices in pants, said these fitted shorts felt a bit skimpy but that the fabric didn’t bunch behind his knees. These shorts are lightweight enough for hot yoga, and the “stretchy” moisture-wicking material moved with him as he transitioned through poses, with the liner alleviating the need for underwear.
As I had mentioned in a previous post , boardies / surf shorts are sufficient for my practice. The NY Times feature did cite that one of the perils of wearing board shorts is " revealing too much info " during poses like Ardha Chandrasna .