Tuesday, September 14, 2010

My Dad Would be Very Excited if He Knew Boswell was Co-sponsoring a Yoga Class (with Neal Pollack, Friday, September 17th, 5:30 PM)

If you follow this blog, you may have already heard that my father was a seeker. No, he wasn’t looking for spiritual truths, though he may have inadvertently found it through his search. What he seemed to be doing in his middle years was finding some sort of meaning in his life after he realized he was not going to get it from his work. Shepherding a family business and trained as an accountant, the first failed, and the latter was used only after hours, where he doubled as a bookkeeper at night, in addition to working as a cutter during the day at the Willow Coat Company.

This successor to his family business also eventually failed, and he went on to do bookkeeping for my uncle, posted at a law firm and a maker of bridal accoutrements, but he’d already bailed, at least emotionally. From the 1970’s on, his purpose in life seemed to be to find the physical activity that made him happiest (Note: he was also quite fond of his family). He started jogging, he dabbled in tennis (too competitive), attempted the martial arts, turned casual bicycling with his children into an obsession, took to the water with swimming (though always with fins), and then became an avid folk dancer.

In the middle of this, he also took up yoga. The Eastern Queens Y (they took Queens out of their name some years after to attract more folks from Nassau County) has free classes at the time, and he became quite fond of one teacher (Was that Alice? Or was she his swimming mentor?) The only problem was, he was incredibly stiff (as I am now) and had some arthritis issues. He could barely complete any pose, save one. The head stand, which I guess is called salamba sirsasana. He didn’t call it that.

He so loved standing on his head that he would spend ten minutes every night in our basement upended, comfortable on the mats he had made at the factory. Yes, we had nice gym mats. Sometimes we did it together.

So you can only imagine my reaction when I got the new poster for our co-sponsored yoga class and saw Neal Pollack in salamba sirsasana. Pollack is making a special appearance at Invivo Wellness and Fitness on Humboldt, just south of North. They are hosting a special class on Friday, September 17th, at 5:30, with instructor Biz Casmer, and Pollack, who will tell a bit about his yoga transformation, all the while stretching and doing the downward dog and that sort of thing. This special class is donation based; you can register at 414-265-5605.

Have you been to Invivo yet? I went to visit the yoga studio and it's beautiful, with views of the Milwaukee River. It's less than five minutes from Boswell by car, and I found it a lovely walk (my form of exercise).

Afterwards, Neal will head over to Boswell for a traditional talk and signing at 7 PM. You may remember that the last time Pollack was in town, Schwartz sold books at a bar, where his band played. Who knows what's next?

Hope to see you at both.

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