As I continue to fight the darkness, I realize that I have to – no, I NEED to – get out. Out of my house, out of my comfort zone, out of my pajamas (or yoga pants), out of my routine of just lying around.
My Saturday afternoon activity with a group of mom friends was about as “out” as you can imagine. (And I found the activity even more hilarious considering we all spent Saturday morning at church with our children preparing for their first communion.)
I took a class that afternoon with my friends. Specifically, a pole dancing instructional class. Four moms from the suburbs went to a strip mall 45 minutes from home, and after two rounds of super strong martinis at a nearby restaurant, we were prepared to learn new “skills.”
The store front for this adventure was smushed between a hair salon and a seedy-looking yoga studio. The two windows were covered in pink and purple gauzy curtains. The red wooden door had ornate carvings, and was definitely out-of-place with the other establishments’ clear glass entryways.
The entry was narrow. A sign told us to remove our shoes at the door and place them on the trays flanking the door. A few plastic, cheap chairs lined one side of the entry, and a messy desk was pushed in the middle of the hall. A line of about six women was already formed, each giving the instructor at the desk her name and making payment (or using a Groupon, as my group was doing).
Dimly lit, poorly shot photos of women in various poses on poles were tacked to the walls. I’m assuming these were students, but they could have been “professionals,” I guess.
After checking in, we were told to go into the back. Here we found a super bright room with a dozen poles. The women who were in line before us had claimed their poles, and I had to ask one of the ladies to move down so I could be near my friends. (Thank goodness, because we spent so much time laughing, I would have been really lonely and not having much fun if I was on the other side of the room.)
(Side note: we were all completely dressed for this class in workout wear. It wasn’t THAT kind of class!)
Class started with some basic stretching. The instructor was young, and not as… svelte… as I would have thought. Then she taught us some basic “moves” that included the princess pose (laying on your side, bottom leg bent at the knee, other leg straight up in the air and one hand stroking the body from leg to hair) and the desperation pump (laying face down and essentially humping the ground – the instructor made it look less “desperate” than any of us moms). She taught us how to get from laying down to standing up in a “sexy” way (complete with ass smack). And we learned the “sexy walk” which involved walking on tip toe, dragging the toes of one foot to meet the other and vice versa – admittedly, I found it anything but sexy as it was weird and awkward and Frankenstein-like (but with more hip thrust).
Then we were onto the pole portion of the lesson.
We learned the fireman, the side-saddle, and some other move that’s name escapes me. Then we were given instruction on how to combine the walk, the pole action, and getting up (complete with ass smack). Walking in circles, hand on the pole, spinning awkwardly and falling the ground left us all dizzy and in fits of laughter. (Maybe round two of the drinks wasn’t the best idea, but I don’t know that any of us would have had the courage to do this without a little encouragement…)
We watched the instructor rip off her silky pants (revealing tiny and unattractively tight boy shorts, which may have actually been her panties?), put on ridiculously high f-me pumps, and demonstrate some upside down maneuvers that are taught in advanced classes. (The whole point of this instructional class is to convince people to sign up for six-week classes, of which there are FIVE levels before “graduating.” Graduating to what, I was afraid to ask. FYI – none of us signed up for classes when we left.)
It has been a ridiculously long time since I’ve laughed so hard. Watching my mom friends (a nurse, two accountants, and me – a college professor. I’m pretty sure there’s a joke in there somewhere…) try to navigate the pole or walk-the-walk was hilarious, as I’m sure they had as much laughing at my expense, too. We all walked out of there with a bunch of painful “pole kisses” (which is what the instructor called the bruises we were already seeing on our thighs and shins).
None of us found second careers, but it was a fun, silly, wouldn’t-have-done-it-alone experience that we won’t forget. I also learned that I’m tremendously out of shape (or pole dancing is great exercise) as I was sweating really a ton by the end of the hour-plus class, and the muscles in my arms and the backs of my thighs were SCREAMING.
I need to find more opportunities to get out, do stuff, even silly stuff like this. I had an awesome time with time with the moms, all of us completely out of our comfort zones. And even better, my abs and cheeks got quite a workout from laughing so much. Laughter might be the best medicine after all.