I want a corn dog.

Posted September 28, 2017 @ 1:52pm | by Tripp

There's no hiding from the truth. My favorite foods are com prised of things that are    bad for me. Corndogs, steamed crabs, hushpuppies, a roast chicken, brownies, pie (the entire category of foods called pie), bar-b-que, bread, and curries. I love these things. I will eat vegetables, of course. Some of them I enjoy, but the foods I go running to when I need more than basic nutrition are the aforementioned. I also like breakfast.

I share this as a follow up to my previous post about how I some how still fit in my pants. I am grateful that I can still do so, but the time is growing short and my waistline is expanding. I whined. That's the truth of it.

But now, I want to move past the whining. Let's talk about Karin, Annie, and Bobby.

In the last post, I mentioned a yogi who has already been an influence. Karin is her name and she's one of those people I just clicked with online and hope to meet in the flesh one day. She does the "holistic" thing better than anyone I have yet read - so much so that I hate to use the over-used term to describe what she's about. It's yoga. It's a religious practice. As a teacher, she has not forgotten this truth. The poses are not simply physically challenging. To challenge the body is to challenge the soul and mind to grow and stretch and strengthen. When we encounter physical pain, we may quickly discover an accompanying spiritual pain. Lastly, we are always beginners. Always.

Annie is an acquaintance I actually have met in the flesh. Gracious and brilliant, she is the paragon of hard work. She is motivated to be healthy. The joy she has discovered in being healthy is written all over her face. She has a coach. A good coach. She knows how to set goals, create a network of support to achieve those goals, and give herself grace when her expectations may not precisely be met as she hoped. Then she works again. Our lives and bodies change. So must our expectations. Incremental changes lead to enormous gains sometimes well beyond what we expected.

Lastly is Bobby McFerrin. He has been a hero for some time. I don't know how he does what he does, but I know that his body is his instrument. He cannot make the music he makes without his body being in peak condition. Diet, exercise, self-care of all kinds goes into his daily routine. He prays, chants, stretches, eats right. He sings. Singing is great exercise. He has made a lifetime's discipline of it.

So, here's an obvious take-away. I need to sing more. Yes, sing. Breathe, stretch, walk, but more than anything else, sing. There's the adrenaline rush, that flow that a friend mentioned. Nothing else is like it.

In the singing it will become clear to me what else I should do. Singing orders my senses. It orders my soul. Breath upon breath upon breath leading to harmonics. These are not concentric circles, per se, but ripples of concord and discord at play. Homo ludens, it seems, is my lot.

Always an amateur, a novice, a beginner, I will need to begin again and again if I am to do this well. There will be stretching (literal and figurative; a curious word, figurative). I will encounter wounds. I will shy away from them. But I need to keep singing. "With a bold, strong voice, you will have to cross over." Indeed.

This will take friends to succeed. The changes will come slowly. I will need a coach. A good coach, one who understands that the soul is at work, that the body is art and craft, that sound is grace and fraught with disillusionment.

Musicking is hard. It just is. I'll need to set fair expectations.

And I have a lifetime to keep singing.


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