Inspired in part by Jennifer White’s “Yes, I’m a Serious Yogi, But I Still Do These 6 Things.“
It’s true: yoga has transformed me.
In my youth one might have accurately described me as the anti-yogi; I was all piss and vinegar—black eyeliner, steel toed boots and clouds of hairspray. I scorned vegetables, ate my steak black and blue, maintained absolute skepticism about the value of mankind, and thought “love”—while not necessarily a dirty word—was certainly a suspicious one.
I’m sure people who knew me long ago are wondering what kind of cult I’ve bought into, now that I’m om-ing my way down the yellow brick road (unless they are yogis, too), or maybe they’re just relieved that I’m not such a menace to society anymore.
Either way, they—and anyone else who regards me as a paradigm of yogic living—might be surprised to discover that in some ways, I’m still the same unrepentant pain the the ass I ever was. Yes, I try to do it in a way that gels with my spiritual beliefs, but one of those beliefs is that I am only human, and that perfection is an illusion.
Here are 14 things I still do even though I’m a serious yogi:
1) I eat stuff like pizza, Oreos, and Kraft Mac n Cheese.
No, I don’t do it often, but it would bother me to pretend I’m all green and clean when all it takes to seduce me into eating a sleeve of Girl Scout cookies is a Girl Scout within five miles of my home.
2) I laugh whenever I see old time-y pictures of yoga guys wearing diapers.
I can’t help it. They’re really funny.
3) I get road rage.
Okay, maybe it’s not road rage—it’s more like road annoyance—but I do get it and it’s not yogic.
At this point I feel like I should be all “Om, shanti, my driving friend,” but in my head I’m screaming, “Hurry up, Gramma! I don’t have all day here!”
4) I shop at Target.
This goes against every fiber of my yoga being, but I love Target. Love it. Where else can I buy fresh spinach and a cute tank top and any size picture frame I could possibly need?
5) I yell at my dogs.
Common sense indicates that being a yogi—believing that all things are one and that compassion is our primary directive—would turn us into something akin to the Dog Whisperer. But when my damn dogs hijack the grilled cheese sandwiches I just made for my son and his friend right off the kitchen counter, I let the expletives fly.
6) I can still drink your ass under the table.
That is not to say that I will, but trust me, I can.
7) I like wearing high heels.
Not just a nice pair of sling back pumps—really high heels that wouldn’t look out of place on a streetwalker—a classy one, obviously.
8) I get irritated in check out lines.
I enter every check out line thinking, “Here is a good opportunity to practice patience.” But by the time the woman in front of me has run back into the store for the fifth item she forgot, and then the cashier has to switch registers with another cashier, and the new cashier has to do a price check on my celery root, and then she puts my celery root in a plastic bag—my hair is standing on end.
9) I let my kid watch inappropriate television.
American Dad. South Park. Family Guy. I admit, I got a little uncomfortable when Peter Griffin decided to write his own series of erotic fiction, but did I turn off the show? No, I did not.
10) I usually forget to bring recyclable bags.
This little oversight makes my irritation at the check out counter that much more reprehensible—and I do try to remember, I swear! But somehow between my house and the store, it slips my mind almost every time.
Of all the things on this list, this is the one I plan on amending, stat.
11) I eat at Subway, and when I do, I get Diet Coke.
Ugh, I know, I know—the bread is made from old yoga mats and Diet Coke might as well be anti-freeze, but there’s something about sitting down in a crappy Subway restaurant with a processed veggie patty and a carbonated glass of pure evil that I can’t resist.
12) When I can’t sleep, I take Nyquil.
Terrible, right? I should be able to meditate—not medicate—myself off into dreamland any old time I want to.
(I should add that I don’t always resort to Nyquil—I switch it out between Nyquil, Tylenol PM and melatonin.)
What can I say? I need my zzz’s.
13) I read People Magazine.
Oh my God, why am I copping to this?
It might be my greatest shame. But, like Edgar Allen Poe’s beating heart, even if it’s buried under the floorboards, it’s still there—updates on Dancing With The Stars and all.
14) If given the slightest chance, I will belt out the lyrics to Sir Mixalot “Baby’s Got Back” anytime, anywhere.
You want proof? It just happened during my son’s bath. Like I said; anytime, anywhere.
Yes, being a dedicated yogi means making a lot of (welcome) changes on one’s life, but that doesn’t mean that we’re saints in tight clothing. At least not in my case…oh hold on, here it comes!
I like big butts and I cannot lie! You other brothers can’t deny! That when a girl walks in with a itty bitty waist and puts that round thing in yo face, you get sprung!
Sorry! I know it’s no Ashtangi chant, but I just can’t get that song out of my head no matter how many sun salutations I do.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: William Clifford/Flickr