Monday, January 31


Disgusting. The air felt toxic. The people looked toxic; crazed really. I felt like I had stepped into a cult of the already initiated, and so enmeshed they were in their common belief that what they were doing was right. What they were doing was good, that they had lost sight of reality: they were surrounded by germs.

The air was resplendent in them. It smelled the way it might if I piled 12 un-showered teenage boys, fresh from soccer practice, into my little Honda Fit. In the middle of summer. During a heatwave. While I sit in steamy air, in the drivers seat wearing all of their 24 socks tied around my neck. I tried not to breathe. Anxiety rose in me, and a little tiny voice of common sense and reason-that I have long since become accustomed to ignoring-telling me to: GET OUT. GET OUT NOW.

Having only seen the worn and glistening wooden floors, and soft cozy lighting of other studios, I looked down at the indoor/outdoor carpeting that covered the entry, changing areas and cubby spaces. And gasp! Horror of all horrors! When I opened the door to the practice room, I saw that the carpet flowed into that space as well. I trodded into the room in my bare feet. The floor felt sticky.

I found a spot for my mat, and before unrolling it seriously considered writing off the 16$ I had just paid as a relatively cheap lesson in common sense. Instead I stayed, and sweated, and tried not to think about what lived in the fake fibers of the furry thing underneath me-and now in between each of my poor, once pure toes. I Warriored and Scorpioned with the rest of them, doing my best never to touch the floor with my hands, while I watched in the cracked mirror on the wall, the rivulets of sweat pouring off the man in front of me, onto his towel, off his mat and into the floor.

And when I left, still wearing my soaking wet clothes and carrying my mat- which I would sanitize when I got home for the first time ever- I felt great, and I knew I would never, EVER, go back.