Tag Archives: joy

Dance Like Nobody’s Watching–Even at the Airport

DanceLikeNobodyWatchingOkay, first you gotta watch the video.  Grab a cup of coffee and click the arrow.  It will only take a minute.

Wow, how cool is that?  We’ve all had the experience  of standing in the bloody baggage claim area after a long flight, watching that little belt go around, straining hopelessly to catch a glimpse of our long lost underwear.  But not this girl. Oh no.  She just put on some tunes and rocked out!

When was the last time you did something like that?  I think maybe it has been years and years for me.  I used to regularly engage in PAI (Public Acts of I-don’t-care-what-you-think).  When I was a kid, I was an endless source of humiliation for my poor sister.  I wore crazy hats.  I was kicked out of grocery stores.  My cousin regularly reminds me of how we used to ride around town in her convertible with the top down and me singing opera at the top of my lungs.

What happened?

Is it just because I’m older?  Have I grown wary and frightened?  Or is it because I got bigger?  Were I to dance around at the airport like that today, would people around mostly ignore me or smile gently like they do at the girl in the video?  Or would they hurl insults at me and call me names like they did a few months back at the restaurant?

But I often wonder if this is one of the most insidious repercussions for those of us who have been bullied.  How many insults can we endure before we shut down?  How many of us have had our bright, bright lights muted under bushel baskets for years and years because we have been traumatized, battered, and bruised by very public opinions about our bodies?  I continue to wonder about the squandering of those most precious resources.  Resources we desperately need in our society like energy, inspiration, spontaneity, creativity, courage and joy.  Can our world afford to throw these precious gifts away in order to sell more diet pills and gain more research funding for take home bulimia kits?  I don’t think it can.

So my friends, let’s see if we can’t find a way to get our collective mojo back.  I think exploring our inner child is a good start.  And so is collecting for radically awesome events like A Fatty Affair.  And joining fantastic groups like The Size Diversity Task Force can’t hurt either.  After being part of the SDTF, inspired me to shoot this video on a busy weekday at my local thrift store. I’m committed to doing whatever it takes.  Because hiding our light under a bushel basket doesn’t just diminish us personally, it deprives the world of our fantastic, glorious, gorgeous light, which is a crime against humanity.  So let’s see if we can’t find even more ways to pull those bushel baskets off and dance like nobody’s watching.

Love,

The Fat Chick

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Thursday Theater: Sled Dogs

Just in time for the new year, I present some very, very happy doggies sledding in the snow. I do this for two reasons.

Reason #1: This video makes me laugh and feel happy every time I watch it.

Reason #2: I’d like to talk with you about one of my favorite New Year’s Resolutions. This year, I’m going to resolve to get more happy, fabulous, fun and JOYFUL movement into my life. I want to move more just for the fun of it–sorta like these dogs are doing. I want to run and romp and play just because I can.

Because I ask you–do you think these dogs are calculating the number of calories they are burning? Do you think they are wearing fitness monitors that tell them if they are in their “target training zone”? Are they pulling out their iPhones to record their number of sets? NO! They are just running around, tongues hanging out, and having as much fun as possible before someone tells them they have to come inside.

Now let me be clear. There’s nothing wrong with tracking details of your exercise program if that makes you happy. By all means use whatever iPhone app or tracking program or digital device that makes you happy. Whatever works for YOU.

But as for me, I’m aiming for more playtime followed by grown-up nap time this year.  I want to smell the seasons in the air and jump around and dance like a silly person and collapse with giggles.  I hope to have as much fun with my exercise routine in 2013 as those guys in the video up there, and I hope you do to!

Love,

The Fat Chick

P.S. If you live anywhere near the LA area, you can join us for a super fun dance extravaganza on January 6.  Details coming soon!

And it’s always fun to join us for our free live streaming workouts.  They are starting back up this year on January 5 and will air Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings from 8:30–9:30 PST.  Just go to this link to watch and dance with us LIVE!

Stuff that Weighs More than Me: World’s Biggest Hanukkah Menorah


Just in time for Hanukkah, I give you, the world’s largest Menorah.  This amazing edifice stands at Fifth Avenue and 59th Street, by Central Park, between the Plaza and the Pierre Hotels in New York City.  This year, the first Hannukah “candle” will be lit at 5:30 PM on Saturday, December 8.  All the candles will be lit on the evening of December 15.  The Menorah will be lighted nightly with genuine oil lamps.  Given the enormous size of the structure, the lamps will be lit using a Con Edison Cherry Picker and two lifts.

This amazing Menorah, certified by Guinness Worlds Records as the world’s largest, was designed based on a drawing inspired by the original Menorah at the Holy Temple of Jerusalem.  The Menorah will be the site of a number of celebrations in the coming week including a parade on December 13 and a celebration featuring music, dance, free hot “Latkes” and “Hanukkah Gelt” for the children.  YUM!

Here’s the stats:

Color: gold

Material: steel

Height: 32 feet

Weight: Over 4,000 lbs.

Conclusion: even after an evening of free hot Latkes, the worlds largest Chaukah Menorah still weighs more than me.

Happy Hanukkah!

Love,
The Fat Chick

Thursday Theater: With a Thankful Heart

Good morning my dear Chicklettes! This Thanksgiving I am grateful for so many things! And, in addition to my wonderful heart, I am especially grateful for the amazing and wonderful gift of my whole mind and my entire body:

  • Feet that step and skip and dance,
  • Legs that have carried me towards my loved ones and all that I dream,
  • Knees that flex under the load I sometimes have to carry, and kneel in awe of the beauty of this world,
  • Thighs that make a lap for holding warm, squirmy, squiggly children and a resting place for the chin of my fabulous dog, Max,
  • Hips that sway and shimmy and shake to the beat of the beautiful old earth, and make a place to rest my hands when arms akimbo, I face the dangers and toils of this world,
  • A round, soft bottom that cushions me when I fall,
  • A warm, generous tummy that creates the energy I need to live and love and shakes merrily when I giggle and gufflaw at the delicious absurdity of life,
  • A broad back that allows me to bend down to help others and help shoulder their load,
  • An expansive chest that swells when I breathe the rich and wonderful air, that powers my speech and my song, that gives me a place to cradle that which is beloved,
  • A powerful neck that allows me to turn my head and see not only that which is right in front of my eyes, but all of the wonder that surrounds me,
  • Lips to kiss,
  • Tongue to taste,
  • Teeth to bite when the need arises,
  • Eyes that convey the beauty of the universe to my mind and allow others to see into my soul,
  • Ears that record the music of the earth from the soft shushing of the surf to the boom of a storm to the whisper of a lover sharing a secret,
  • And a heart and mind capable of recognizing the incomprehensible nature of the gift which I have received.

Here’s hoping that Thanksgiving is full of all that makes you happy and joyfully devoid of the stuff that tempts you to choose to relinquish your peace.

Love,

The Fat Chick

The unparalelled power of owning your beauty

Today I was privileged to read this powerful post from a woman speaking about how she chose to call herself beautiful in front of her daughters.  She understands the power of claiming, unconditionally, that she is beautiful in front of her kids.  She spoke of how it must have seemed confusing for her young offspring in the past, when they thought her beautiful, but she negated that reality.

She says:

How confusing it must have been to have me say to them, “You think I am beautiful, but you are wrong. You are small and you love me, so you’re not smart enough to know how unattractive I am. I know I am ugly because I see myself with mean eyes. You are my child and I love you, but I will not allow myself to be pretty, for you.

What a profound thing this is.–to understand the power we gain not only for ourselves, but also for all who love us, when we claim our power to be beautiful.  When we cast false modesty aside and inhabit our glorious, gorgeous selves we do more than make ourselves feel better.  We also create space for others to feel beautiful.  We wrest control from media outlets and glossy glamour magazines, over the definition of fabulous.  We teach our children that beauty comes in an unending variety of sizes, shapes, colors and types.  We cast aside the fear that we will never again be worthy of adoration–that we will never again be enough to make someone gasp at our audacity and amazing selves.  And we prevent that fear from tainting the lives of our children.  We own the definition of ravishing and rapturous and we choose to apply it to ourselves.  And once we’ve applied those labels to ourselves, who would dare, WHO WOULD DARE take it from  us?

I find this concept endlessly exciting.  The notion that claiming our power encourages other women to do the same.  And that making acceptance of ourselves unconditional before our children, we teach them to love themselves forever, rather than for the short time they are young, thin, unblemished, untarnished and inexperienced.  What a spectacular and lasting legacy!

So my dear friends.  What would happen for you if you cast off the need to be modest and demure?  How profound is the impact of accepting yourself unconditionally and forever, just as you are?  And just how large is the gift to those who come behind, when you model this calm, confident and peaceful contentment on a day to day basis?

Love thyself, and change the world!

Love,

The Fat Chick

Thursday Theater: Joy in the Dance with Helen Keller

For this Thursday Theater, I wanted to share this amazing video featuring Helen Keller and Martha Graham.  Apparently when these two women met, they recognized that they were kindred spirits.  Martha Graham was immediately taken by Helen’s ‘gracious embrace of life’.  And indeed, Helen’s joy at experiencing the dance in her own unique way is palpable.

You can read a lot more about the meeting here, including a very wonderful story about Helen learning the meaning of the word “jump”.  Apparently while experiencing the dance, Helen asked what the word “jump” meant.  Martha Graham called one of the dancers over and placed Helen’s hands gently on his waist.  He then jumped in the air several times.  Helen was so excited as she now understood the full meaning of this word.  She experienced the freedom that comes when a body leaves the earth.  “How like thought, how like the mind it is!” she exclaimed.

I played Helen Keller in a theatrical version of The Miracle Worker when I was in high school.  Ever since then, she has been an important influence in my life.   I find this video especially moving for two reasons.  First, I think it shows that dance is a very powerful form of communication that breaks through many barriers.  And second, I think it shows how wonderful it is that each of us can experience joy in a way that is personal and unique.  I love watching Helen’s face in the video and watching the abandon with which she experiences life.  It’s something that I would like to aspire to one day.  I find it deeply inspiring and hope you do too.

Love,

The Fat Chick

Filling the Barns

We had the house tented for termites this past weekend.  This is a rite of passage that nearly all Southern California folks go through at some point in their lives, and it is a big pain in the tuckus.  We had to be out of the house for several days and we had to spend many hours prepping the house for the process.  Frankly we were dreading the whole thing.  We had researched some hotels in town that could accommodate us and our dog and we were frankly less than thrilled with the options.

Then my awesome husband came up with a brilliant idea.  “Let’s go camping!” he said.  I was skeptical.  I was waiting to hear back from a show producer.  I had piles and piles of work to do and I knew the campground didn’t have wi-fi.  How could I realistically take the weekend off?  I also wasn’t sure that prepping to live in a tent while we were prepping to tent the house seemed like such a good idea, but I agreed.  And getting ready for the trip was kind of tough with everything else going on, but boy am I ever glad we did.

We finally had just a breath of fall.  It was so nice to don a light jacket at night and to live without the whirr of the AC for a few days.  The weather was frankly, perfect.  Warm, sunny, clear and gorgeous.  We spent a lot of time doing nothing.  We walked.  We talked.  We looked at trees. We tasted apple cider.  We played with the dog.

This was definitely a lemons to lemonade situation here.  I had been wanting to take some time off, but just felt that I couldn’t.  I was clearly tense, frustrated and completely out of energy.  But somehow I felt I needed to keep slogging.  I was trying to keep the farm running and the livestock fed with an empty barn.

It was just a reminder that sometimes you have to stop and fill the barn.  Sometimes you have to quit waving the pitchfork around and you need to go get some hay.  Sometimes you’ve got to refuel.

Sure, I took almost a whole weekend off.  (I still took a producer call on Friday night and taught class Saturday morning.)  And you know what?  The world kept on turning.  I remembered that I have a family who loves me.  And I am ready to face that huge pile of stuff to do again with renewed energy and purpose.

I’m remembering again that I am one very lucky fat chick!

Love,

The Fat Chick