I Wanna Be a Dancin’ Man

QUICK HIT: I should be digging back into my work deadlines, but I wanted to knock out a quick blogpost first. And then, instead of writing anything, I’ve been going down the Youtube rabbit hole for the last 45 minutes or so.

Most of what I’ve been watching is various dance-themed videos. Joseph Gordon-Levitt doing “Rhythm Nation” on Lip Sync Battle; Ms. Mojo’s list of the top 10 best-choreographed music videos; Shirley MacLaine explaining (and demonstrating!) different choreographic styles. And lots and lots and lots of Fosse.

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Either-Or

I don’t know if I’ve talked about it here on JALC, but there was a stretch of time during my Philly years that I became a low-grade devotee of short-form improv. All of which is a somewhat pretentious way to say I took a few classes, did a few student shows, and attended the occasional improv “playdate” with other amateurs who just wanted to keep to fun of the practice going.

But one of the reasons I’m drawn towards the more pretentious phrasing around being a “devotee” is the way in which studying improv during those few years was absolutely transformational for my life, my career, and my psychological health. This is not hyperbole: legit transformed.

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Midstream Report

So, I’ve been playing hooky from JALC for the weekend.

In large part because I’ve been binge-watching Game of Thrones before the final season premieres a few short weeks from now. This weekend got me to the end of season 6, so I should be able to knock out season 7 between now and April 14. But between all that screen time Friday night and yesterday afternoon, I wasn’t in any sort of mood to be typing on my computer last night.

Instead, I curled up in bed and read a chunk of Wolf Hall. Yes, even in a mode where I’m supposedly lightening up on my reading challenge goals, watch me tackle yet another tome of a book.

I’ve decided I want to hold off on any sort of “review” of GoT till after I’m all the way caught up, and I always wait till a book is finished before making a post here.

Given that I’m very much midstream on all the things, what is there to say here? Join me behind the jump as I figure that out…

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The View from the Floor

I’m already trying to “level up” my renewed yoga practice: not only did I follow through on my intention to attend class last night, I also went straight from work to attend a 6 PM beginner’s class tonight.

Now, in a perfect world, I’d up my class frequency while still having some recovery time between sessions. But these are the two nights that beginner classes are scheduled on, so this is the structure I need to work within–at least until I build enough skill/stamina to take on additional class types.

So here we are. After two classes in a row, I expect to sleep well tonight. I also half-expect to be sore tomorrow. And, in the interest of continuing to reflect on and honor my journey getting back to the mat, I’m going to share some of the impressions and observations that have come to me during this week’s classes.

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Nothing to Prove

Why yes, Virginia, I did enjoy Captain Marvel yesterday.

Now, there’s no need for me to do a full-on review: there’s enough examples of that out in the wilds of the Internet. In case you need them, here’s some recommended links:

  • Peter Travers’s review in Rolling Stone
  • Owen Gleiberman’s review for Variety
  • Alex Abad-Santos’s coverage in Vox about sexist responses to the film, in the larger context of similar buffoonery around Star Wars: The Last Jedi and other genre flicks

Instead, I’m going to focus on one small moment, recounted in as spoiler-free a fashion as I can manage.

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Stretching Beyond My Comfort Zone

For all that I have complaints about my endocrinologist’s world view,* there was one thing she said last Friday that has really resonated with me. As we were going through my lifestyle assessment—job, schedule, usual meal choices and physical activity day-to-day—she sussed out the fact that the demands of my non-profit job, both in the sense of dedication to my org’s mission, and the general workload/stress, are strong contributors to my current landscape of sketchy nutritional choices and sedentary days. And the endocrinologist said:

You should be taking your health and self-care as seriously as you do your job.

And although I’d wager that she and I have drastically different definitions for what constitutes “health” or “self-care,”** it’s still a point well taken.

I’m not the first or the last non-profit professional to fall into this trap, but I do have a pattern of neglecting my well-being in an attempt to keep up with the workload and sustain an organization I legitimately, really, truly believe in and want to see succeed. And as I figure out my approach towards handling my new diagnosis, it’s worth recalibrating a little bit.

So tonight after work, I did something very brave: I went to yoga class.

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