Blame it on the yoga pants

I have yoga pants, so sooner or later, it was bound to happen.

I went to a yoga class.

And I lived.

Barely.

It came about because my friend Nan had started going to yoga, then my friend Paula started going, and then all of a sudden every other middle-age woman I know, all of whom had yoga pants, started going to yoga.

Yoga pants are the gateway drug to actual yoga.

I don't even remember why I got yoga pants in the first place.

I suspect it had something to do with the elastic waistband.

Anyway, everybody I know was raving about yoga, and I was feeling very achy and blobby after winter, so I decided to join Nan at her beginner class on Saturday morning.

I figured, how hard can it be?

I got dressed in my yoga pants, but then I realized I had no yoga shirt, or basically anything that fits close enough so that when you go upside down it will not reveal your elastic waistband.

Or your elastic waist.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

I got to the class early because that's how I am on the first day of school.

I felt vaguely nervous waiting for everyone in the woo-woo yoga studio, which had a lot of stuff for sale.

Maybe shopping was the warm-up.

Unfortunately, the only things they sold were crystals, worry beads, and gluten- and dairy-free candy bars.

By which I mean, candy bars without the candy.

Also, I don't need beads to worry.

I can worry without accessories.

I'm a professional worrier.

It comes with the ovaries.

Evidently, new-age gifts don't appeal to me in my old age.

There was only one thing for sale that tempted me, and it was called Be Happy Mist. It was a small spray bottle of clear fluid that claimed to "restore peace, ease suffering, and clear negative emotions."

The sign said, "Do you want to be happier?"

I thought was a trick question.

It's hard to imagine you could be any happier than wearing a pair of pants with no waistband.

It was also safe for "adults, children, pets, and plants."

Which is quite something.

I don't think it's possible to restore peace among my pets.

And my plants come with negative emotions.

Because my garden is growing snakes.

So I didn't buy anything while I waited for the teacher to arrive, but in time she did and so did Nan, and we introduced ourselves, went to a pretty room, and immediately started what is called the "practice."

Unfortunately, I should have practiced for the practice.

The very first thing we did was lie down on a mat on our backs, reach our hands over our heads, and try to curve our bodies into the shape of a C, to the right and to the left.

Which was impossible.

The most I got was a backslash.

I couldn't make a C on either side, and at one point while I was trying, I actually fell down, which is incredible because I was already on the floor.

Ten minutes later, we had gone through an array of poses, or stretching exercises, and I couldn't do any of them. I was sweating, burping, and cursing.

In my mind.

Profanity is unwelcome in a yoga studio.

Also farting.

I held it in.

Correction, them in.

Really, all that squeezing toned my butt.

Maybe that's how yoga works?

My muscles wiggled if I tried to hold a position, and then the instructor said you were supposed to time your breathing to the stretching, which was when I realized I was holding my breath, probably trying to pass out so they would call 911 and rescue me from class.

All the poses had names, like Downward Dog, which was named by someone who never met a dog, since all of my mine are Upward Dogs.

And when we came to Happy Baby pose, I wanted to give up because I felt like such an Unhappy Baby.

But I stayed with it, and when class was over, I noticed my back had stopped hurting.

My ego was bruised, but that's nothing new.

So I'm going back for a second class.

Namaste.

Look for Lisa's new emotional thriller, "Most Wanted" in stores now. Also look for Lisa and Francesca's latest humor collection, "Does This Beach Make Me Look Fat?" and Lisa's new Rosato & DiNunzio novel, "Corrupted."

lisa@scottoline.com