Overall, yoga is all about union: you know, fitting in.
1. Wear Feather Earrings or hair extensions that come from abused chickens and whose faddishness is adversely effecting fisherman (who are often the best environmentalists among us). Feathers in your hair say “hippie” about as eloquently as driving an SUV to your yoga class does.Photo of Hanuman Festival, Boulder, Colorado.
2. Practice your favorite Spiritual Materialism Catch-Phrases. Jai Hanuman! Namaste! No need to know what it means, so long as you say it enthusiastically—as if you were saying “Fuck Yeah!” Bone up on your spiritual treefort password lingo (you don’t need to know what these terms mean, but make sure you pepper them throughout your normal watercooler talk): namaste, efficacy, peace, love, open up, resonating, what else?
I’m a bit weak on this one, please leave comment below with other good terms.
3. Pack really tight pants that show off your yoga butt. Yoga is all about lookin’ hot: do your best to look the part of your chosen hippie sorority. Extra points: ridiculous flare at bottom of your yoga pants is optional.
If you’re a guy, make sure you have a spiritual tat: yoga chicks dig sensitive tough guys with mysterious back stories and rock hard, shaved chests.Photo: Brad Coy.
4. Practice your “Naropa Hug,” a term I coined (I get 5% whenever it appears in print).
Step one: stare into one another’s eyes, touch your heart and shake your head silently.
Step two: approach respectfully, while mentally making plans for f*cking later that night.
Step Three: Hug. Do not Pat on Back. Commit. Holllld. Hug tight, but gently.
Step Four and this is key: keep your eyes closed while hugging.
Step Five: keep hugging.
5. Don’t keep it Real—keep it Happy. Whoever is loudest and happiest, they’re cool. Go be with them and do as they do, or you’ll be lonely, awkward, vulnerable.
6. Pack a few Sir Richard’s condoms, and try to get laid. You’ll fail—getting laid is only for the really cool people, or the really desperate people, and as usual you’re right in between, living a safe, fake, boring life. So much for your big getaway weekend.
7. Go up to every yoga teacher after class: see and be seen. Say how wonderful they are and how they touched your heart—doesn’t matter what, unless you’re hot, they won’t care…this is simply about being seen talking to the teacher, and the teacher being seen having a big long receiving line. Yoga #selfie time!
8. Spend $1,000 bucks, give or take, for a total of maybe five yoga classes over three days. No, this is not a good deal, even if your parents forget they’re also footing the bill for a motel with your friend and plane fare and food and cab rides.
9. Get lots of overly plastic-packaged samples that you can throw away. Hurting the environment with packages labeled “coconut” or “natural” is so awesomely ironic, it’d be funny, but humor isn’t encouraged at these conferences: happiness is.
10. The only real requirement is that you’re to be absolutely wonderfully joyfully exuberantly positive about everything. Do NOT be negative ever! Suppress genuine-ness or integrity or truly open heart in favor of business, making money, PR, marketing, hype, and happy facebook posts on your and their Walls after the fact.
Remember: yoga is an industry, a demographic—and not merely a spiritual path or a way of life. Grow up.
Relephant Bonus: elephant’s hometown favorite, The Om Collection.