Old Red

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I paid $30 for a hoop to a woman who made them in her apartment. The red hoop was waiting for me just like she said it would be.  It wasn’t a fire-engine red, but it sparked against the subdued wall that it leaned on. It was red like weathered bricks on chimneys.  I slid the hoop into the backseat and glanced at it every few seconds in the rearview mirror. Like a mother checking on her newborn, I put my hand on the hoop every time we came to a stoplight. 

I understand that Old Red was just a piece of plastic, but she was powerful. She rolled over my body pressing a weight on my skin that was familiar yet fleeting.  She was a circle of protection, a chance to move in ways that I had only done with the curtains drawn in the privacy of my bedroom. I was thrusting my waist, my hips, my legs in broad daylight, and it was okay, and I was okay.  Old Red changed something in me. She calmed the restless inner-child, and awoke a strong, sensual woman.  I felt sexy for the first time in my life thanks to Old Red.  She filled a void that I didn’t know was there. I felt bad about myself until she rolled over me and made me pay attention to my hips, my stomach, my arms, my butt and I realized, I wasn’t so bad.

I gave Old Red to a lady who I thought needed her more than me.  I wonder where Old Red is now.

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You Are Probably Right

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You might call my hoops, “hula hoops,” but I don’t call them that.  Most people who call themselves hoopers don’t call them that either.  Hula hoop is trademarked and marketed by Wham-O.  They are small, plastic, light-weight circles you can get at any local department store for a few bucks. They are tucked back in the kid’s section because they are, in fact, made for kids.  There is nothing wrong with Wham-O style hula hoops, but when I say hoops, I am talking about adult size hoops that are bigger, heavier, and made for the child in you but can fit around the adult you. They are made from irrigation tubing, are somewhere around 42 inches in diameter, weigh nearly a pound, and are wrapped in the sparkliest, happiest tape known to man.  I used to sell these hoops out on the street, and on the streets, I heard, “I can’t do it,” from more adults than I can count. The simplicity is this: If you say you can’t, you are probably right.

In A World of Good and Bad

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I’ve been hooping for about five years, and for the most part, I have found a routine that works for me, an hour routine that allows me to maintain my weight, and my health.  But through these years, there is something else the hoop has continually helped me to maintain, and I’m not sure it’s always a good thing. In fact, sometimes it’s the hardest lesson.

Putting myself inside of circle as much as I do, has changed my way of looking at the world. In the beginning, hooping opened my positivity, it flowed like never before, and I felt on fire for life.  I found my inner child, my beauty, my sexuality, my confidence all inside of a hoop. For the most part, hooping allowed me to see the world with a happier lens.
But I have come to think of world as I think of my hoop, and I realize that sometimes the world can swing around us, and no matter what we do, it is going to go where it needs to go. And if we aren’t careful, we just might make it worse.  I can swing a hoop around my body in so many ways.  I can control how the hoop moves around me. How fast, how slow. I am the center of my hoop, the point of it’s orbit, but even the best hooper knows that just as easy as it spins, so easy can it stop. Sometimes it catches us by surprise, sometimes it might leave us bruised and hurt, and all the times, it teaches us again and again that we have to go with the flow.

There isn’t a hooper aren’t there who hasn’t found a rhythm, started a trick, started a certain move or motion and the hoop seemed to have a different plan entirely. (Like the time I busted my head when I first learned the traveler.. oops.)   It’s this lesson, this realization, that no matter how hard it is, we have to take the good and the bad.  The optimist inside of me screams because in the end who wants the bad. But without it, maybe I couldn’t maintain my sense of balance.

Can you have the good without the bad?

Ten Minutes.

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Ten minutes that’s all, just let go and play.
Ten minutes no more, ten minutes a day.

“How do you do that?” all the kids ask.
“Practice,” I say, but they only laugh.

“No, really,” women will ask,
“What’s the secret? What’s the trick?
How can I keep it going around my hips?”

“Keep trying,” I say, “and don’t give up.
If you think that you can, then that’s almost enough.

“Go ahead,” I tell them,
“and give that hoop a spin, with your mind,
with her heart, with your inner grin.
Ask that circle to go left, or go right.
If you think that you can do it,
well then, you might be right!”

Ten minutes that’s all, just let go and play.
Ten minutes no more, ten minutes a day.

Everybody Wants to Rule the World.

Everybody wants to rule the world,
or so I’m told.
But I know, I will rule the world,
with every rotation, every open turn.
I’m playing in a field of thoughts,
that I will determine,
because I will rule the world, my world.

Will you rule your world?
What will it take for you to give yourself time to flow,
to move pass the things we say we must,
and open up a box of goodies just for you.

I am the ruler of my world.
The author of my story,
the singer of my song,
and I’ve just begun to unwrap the glory in my future.

i’m a hooper my ratty old t-shirt says,
and i’m here to rule the world.

It’s All in the Tape. Part 8

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It’s All in the Tape Part 8.

Continued from Chapter 3 Part 7

I managed to sell all but two hoops.  I felt like a celebrity and if I had any reservations about starting a business, I hooped them all away that night.  I met so many people who showed a real interest in what I was doing.  I met fellow hoopers who shared their stories and their moves. I met the hoopers who didn’t know yet they were hoopers.

People would see the hoops hanging, and walk slower, eyeballing the sparkling circles. I could tell they want to try one out.

“Adult size hoops?” I could hear them thinking.

Some would walk by and with a flick of their wrist say something like, “Oh, a hula hoop.”  They’d look away quickly as if the hoop was completely insignificant in their lives.  But many times, they’d double take.

“Those are big,” they’d say, being pulled to my booth like a magnet. “Wow, adult size hoops,” they’d say in a whispered excitement.  “I used to hula hoop as a kid,” and they’d run their fingers along the edge of the hoop like they were being transported back into their childhood, remembering the motion.