Thursday, September 27, 2012

Countdown to Yoga School ~ Day 17/The N word and I don't mean Namaste

Yoga in the city can be tough sometimes. Not the classes themselves, but what you walk in to after you leave class. I guess that's why we do it. So that we can have a better disposition and more compassion for everyone in world. For our fellow human beings.  But sometimes it's a challenge.  It's a challenge to stay grounded even when you've just left the studio 15, 20 or 30 minutes ago.

In today's class I definitely stretched some muscles that I haven't in a while. So I know I will be feeling that, but I've been feeling pretty good over all. I was thinking that my shoulder might give me some issue, but it's been pretty minimal. Maybe I'm a bit stronger than I think I am or maybe I just haven't hit that Power yoga class yet. LOL! Either way, I feel good.

When I left class today, I made a stop at Trader Joe's and then headed for the bus home.  For the folks reading this in Brooklyn, then you may know the joy and the pain or riding the 65 bus. The joy is that it drops me right in front of my house. The pain is that you might not ever know when it's coming.  The bus is notoriously late and today was no exception.

I was waiting for quite a while when the bus finally came. I found myself a seat in the front and started to settle in when I realized that the woman sitting next to me was having a really loud conversation in which every other word out of her mouth was N***a.  If you are not clear what that is, it's Nigga. Yeah I said it!  Lol!  Now mind you, I am not naive.  I know that the word is used all the time and without thought on a regular basis. But sometimes, many times, it's just used in excess and for no reason or in a spot where another would could be used to create the same emphasis.  Sonia Sanchez once said that if people curse all the time in what would be considered "normal" conversation,  it's probably due to a lack of vocabulary. She believes, if you are going to curse in life, in your writing, etc. you should make it mean something.  Give it real weight.

To this case in point, the woman next to me would not calm down, pipe down or slow down. She was just going on and on with n***a this and n***a that, and that n***a and this n***a,  and well, you know what I'm saying.  When I hear people do this on the bus, train or even in the street talking to friends about other people who are the brunt of the word, I really want to walk up or slide up next to them and repeat the word every time they say it within earshot of them to see if they can hear themselves. See if they can really hear the words coming out of their mouth as it is coming out of mine.  I wonder if it would get me in to an fight. Would someone wonder why I'm calling them a n***a not realizing that it is them saying the word and I'm simply a mirror.

I know you might wonder what this has to do with yoga. Well when this started happening I took a breath. I really tried to find some compassion for my sister.  Clearly there was some drama going on and I honestly hoped that the situation would resolve not just for the sake of my ears, but for the sake of her journey. But you know what, I guess this is her journey.  Hmm...  Then I looked around the bus and found another seat, away from the noise.  Trust me when I tell you that  I'm not like this everyday, but I think today it did help that I had just come from class.  Sometimes it's the little things.


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