The New York Studio School did a real number on me today. That place is out to get me! Actually, it’s half my fault. First, I was doing a standing pose for the afternoon drawing class. No big deal. I’ve done more standing poses than I could possibly count. They definitely test your stamina. But however taxing they can be on your back, the key to not injuring yourself is how you get out of the pose. (This applies to all poses) My reliable system for a standing has always been to lift my shoulders to open up the compression of the vertebrae – to create alleviating space between them – and then do a slow forward bend, while releasing one knee – whichever one was carrying the weight. I stay folded over for a few seconds, in a yoga forward bend, and then straighten up. Works nicely every time.
But today, my mind was distracted or still daydreaming. So when the timer went off I forgot to do my move. I just jerked my torso willy-nilly, like an idiot, and the most delightful assortment of cracking sounds emanated from my back. It was a damn bowl of Rice Krispies. crack, crack, crack, POP! Ugh. What the hell?? Friends, let me tell you what a great feeling it is to hear your already-strained vertebrae grinding against each other and snapping and cracking around like that, sounding like a Civil War battlefield. Good times! Very highly recommended.
OK, so the Studio School isn’t responsible for that one. It was my carelessness. I should’ve known better. I do know better.
Class ended and I had a 30 minute break for dinner, which, for me, consisted of a smoothie and a bag of chips. My evening class was portrait sculpture – the easiest, most undemanding art modeling assignment on the planet. The model doesn’t even have to undress. She just sits in a chair. Yes. That’s it. Sitting in a chair while sculptors scrutinize her cranium and facial features and mold them into clay.
Toward the end of class, a male student picked up his nearly-finished sculpture of my head, carried it off to a table in the back of the room, and SMASHED it down, mashing the soft clay back into a formless blob, kneading away any semblance of a human head. Complete and utter destruction. I guess it’s safe to assume he wasn’t happy with his work. Wiseass that I am, I yelled “Ouch!”. Everyone chuckled.
As if the sight of my clay-molded face being violently disfigured wasn’t traumatic enough, not ten minutes later, a female student did the exact same thing! She flipped the head upside down, and SMASHED it with even more vehemence than the previous student. Pummeled again! My features were kneaded away and pounded with fists. I was gone 😦
So many indignities. So little time.