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Friday, December 30, 2005

holiday sampler

In 1912, the Whitman's Sampler was first introduced. The Sampler was a special box with a mix of different popular kinds of candy sold in the store. The Sampler box was decorated in a cross-stitch design. This design picture was based on a hand-made cross-stitch by Walter Sharp's grandmother. The Sampler box also came with a chart naming the different kinds of candy and their locations in the box. Even today, the Sampler remains very popular and the yellow box with cross-stitch cover design is easily recognized. - Fabulous Philly Foods

i like to collect things. for example, not only am i a marathoner, but i have made it my goal to run a marathon in every state (yes, there IS at least one marathon in every state, and yes, there are others like me. i actually belong to two clubs of like-minded runners: the 50 states marathon club and the 50&DC marathon group). and whenever possible, i make it a point to run an inaugural marathon. why? because race organizers bend over backwards to make sure the race turns out to be a memorable event.

with that in mind...

for the two-week period which included three special days: my birthday, christmas, and new year's day, i had gifted myself with an assortment, a whitman's sampler so to speak, of yoga classes. my goal was to take a class everyday with a different teacher each time, preferably someone i had never taken classes with before (although there were some with whom i had just taken one or two classes and wanted to try them again). since los angeles is a hotbed of yoga studios and yoga personalities, it wasn't hard to do; in fact, i challenged myself to find the best teachers in town and juggle all their schedules around so that i could fit in as many as i could.

since it was the holidays with special schedules and studio closures, it made my job a bit complicated. especially since, in keeping with my current financial situation, i tried to limit the studios to either those with which i already held series passes or those that offered free classes to new students. finally, since i have this minor obsession with firsts and lasts, i attempted to find classes that were a teacher's first or last at a location, on a day or a time, or any combination of the three.

even if it did sound more like torture on my part than a treat, it was all worth it.

with four more days to go until january 3rd (my last day in town before i leave for vacation), barring class substitutions or cancellations, my holiday sampler will look like this:

12/19shiva reasacred movementpass 
12/20landry matthews
(sub for anthony)
city yogaFREEFIRST class
at city yoga
12/22david romanellisacred movementpassFIRST class
at sacred
12/23micheline berrysacred movementpass 
12/24matthew reyesyogamattpass 
12/27anthony benenaticity yoga$12.75
KCRW rate
LAST class
at this time,
this location
12/28 amgurmukh kaur khalsagolden bridge yogaFREE 
12/28 pmtom morleymaha yogapass 
12/29steve rossmaha yogapassLAST pm
class at maha
12/30christine burkeliberation yogaFREE 
12/31liza savage-katz
(sub for chappy)
santa monica
1/1seane cornsacred movementdonationFIRST class
at sacred
1/2gianna carotenutoforrest yoga$12
KCRW rate
1/3 americh schiffmansacred movementpassFIRST class
in new year
1/3 pmmatthew reyesmaha yogapassFIRST class
in steve's
time slot

updated 1/3: i had two unexpected last-minute substitutions and had to skip a few days due to family commitments (see dec 25th post). despite doubling up on the 28th and the 3rd, i ran out of time and couldn't include all the teachers i wanted to check out. i may end up extending this for another week when i get back from vacation.

all in all, i'm quite pleased with the way things turned out. i've had a taste of the different yoga forms -- anusara, kundalini, vinyasa flow, hip-hop -- and i honestly believe that i'm a better yoga student for the experience.

i'll write about each teacher in later posts...


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3:31 AM  

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