Review: Perfect Harmony Yoga and Fitness

I thought about this for a long time. I can say I feel discriminated against, or that I cried for most of the drive home, but it would not change anything. I can say that I feel discouraged from trying yoga at all, but who would listen? This review is solely for my own catharsis and whether it helps anyone decide one way or another is beyond my control.

I started my journey three weeks ago, needing a form of exercise to help with diabetes. I love my job, but there are not many places to go later in the evening. This is why I initially found the location desirable. It fit my schedule, and I had hoped the yoga might help me find balance and stay healthy.

The class itself was okay; I could have used more direct instruction and the instructor did not let met me ask questions. I probably should have sensed something was off, but I was committed to make things work.

Due to work, I was not able to make the next couple meetings. When I could come again the instructor told me she did not want me there anymore because of my gender. She explained how the women felt ‘vulnerable’ with a male present and could not relax properly. I was deeply offended by this as she had said nothing regarding this problem when I first called her or attended class. I imagined a class or studio that wanted to be women-only would say so somewhere on the website. Therefore, I felt humiliated and rather cheapened for something I could not help.

She did not offer me private lessons or any other method to continue. I sincerely hope she is nicer and more forthright with other males attempting to exercise in her establishment. And I hope in the future, such attitudes toward gender do not persist. If males or females wish to pursue their goals – whether it be yoga, ballet, or even the presidency – nothing should stand in their way.

Obama Paper Dolls

I went to my first white elephant gift exchange this past week. Let’s just say there was an interesting assortment of gifts: giant, boot shaped candles, singing lobsters and a Justin Bieber poster to name a few. I had my eye on something special, however.

I saw in the distance, a light part in the heavens. Lo! The founding fathers called out to me and said, “Ben, you must have this ridiculous depiction of Obama and his many suits.”

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Thus, like a cat hidden beneath an azalea bush, I waited for my moment to pounce. And believe it or not, I did not have to trade anything at all for this gem. I got to see the current President in a more revealing fashion than I thought possible or necessary.

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The little voice in my head that should have told me “stop” let me keep cutting these out.

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Isn’t he dapper?

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I’m not entirely sure what happened here. But I didn’t see a very good template for Michelle Obama. I do think Barack wears the hell out of this dress, though.

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Sometimes the Secret Service tries different disguises.

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And isn’t this one just cute?

Anyway, I feel like I made out like a bandit at this gift exchange and I’m excited for next year. Hopefully, I get first crack at that Bieber poster.

Ditmars Mystery Theater

Many years ago when I was growing up my grandmother read me, my brother, and my sister pages from a book with no title and no author. We never bother asking about it because we were kids and assumed, wrongly, that every child had the same book. Years passed, we lost grandma, and grandpa fell ill.

We found pages from the stories grandma read in a manila envelope. Whether she left it in the desk drawer or grandpa put it there we never got the chance to ask.

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Having nothing to go on but words and titles from stories, Google offered few results. It took a few years before anything was found. I discovered the stories were from an author named Agnes Grozier Hebertson and the book was titled Sing Song Stories. There wasn’t much else and it was long since out of print.

It took another two years and the help of my librarian friend Sam Dailey to find a bookseller overseas with a copy. I am extremely grateful and hope these stories from my childhood help keep my grandparent’s memory alive and well.

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Powerpuff Yourself Stereotypes

I messed around with an avatar and GIF creator called Powerpuff yourself. It’s where you make yourself into one of the characters from the cartoon Powerpuff Girls on Cartoon Network. It got me thinking, though. If I intentionally made four racial stereotypes and mixed them with five randomly generated, could others tell which? I guess it’s a test to see how color and/or race blind we are. See how you do.

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Answers from top left: 2, 5, 6, 7
(3 is a blank model)

My Gameplan for the Apocalypse

Since everyone is doing it, I thought it right to detail my plans for the end of society. What’s that? Of course, it’s vogue. If there’s one thing it’s Ben Ditmars knows, it’s what’s vogue. And if there are two things I know, it’s probably how off-putting third-person portrayals can be. Regardless, in the events that follow, I will have a full-proof survival strategy: unless Pet Rocks arrive from the ’80s with revenge in their hearts.

  1. Zombie or Large-Scale Epidemic
    Assuming the Umbrella Corporation buys Dow Chemicals or acquires a massive government contract, we can expect human experimentation that will lead to murderous monsters. It’s just good business. And my chance at living out the future my adolescence prepared me for. How would I survive? There wouldn’t be near enough bullets or hedge clippers to go Tallahassee from the movie Zombieland. I would have to improvise and cure all the deformed hippies being vagrants in my yard. First, I would go to the medicine cabinet and find the rubbing alcohol. Then scream about cotton balls. Why are they never where I left them? Once I tore the bathroom apart like the undead monsters I want to re-kill, the alcohol goes on the cotton balls. Then, BAM! I stand on the roof and huck them at passing brain Nazis. You know it will work, because rubbing alcohol is good at killing bacteria – and probably the T-Virus.
  2. Asteroid or Comet Collision
    There aren’t many places you can hide when the earth has angry sex with a space rock. My initial reaction might be to seek high ground as the oceans engulf my last hope for Chicken McNuggets (I don’t miss them now, but I know after the earth has descended into eternal darkness I will want the flavor only processed meat dipped in ranch dressing can provide). My best bet? I’ve long suspected the highest setting on my ceiling fan has  a greater purpose than shaking the walls like a demonic helicopter. Obviously the creators of this contraption never intended any mere mortal to pull the cord three times. If I so dare (an am worthy of this Zeus-like power) the upward force of my fan should push the asteroid to another unsuspecting solar system, preferably without fans of their own.
  3. Trump Becoming President
    The Donald receiving the Republican nomination for President of the United States is scary enough, let alone him actually fitting his hair into Oval Office. There is an easier solution than living under a demagogue bent on denying basic freedoms to Muslims and women. Mexico pays to build the wall… around Trump. Think about it: Trump gets to rant all he wants and we don’t have to hear him speak. His supporters can hop in Cask of Amontilado style as we brick them in. They can even go down in the manner of Pharoahs with their life-size love-dolls of David Duke and copies of Mein Kampf.

Highlights of 2015

2015 has all but come and gone. Let’s take a look at some of the headlines that made it happen:

10. Adele is the Oprah of music.  (I see the Adele Network in her future.)

9. Gwen Stefani realized for the first time since she hated me that she used to love me. (Because Used to Love You has Ben Ditmars written all over it.)

8. Secure servers do not refer to beach volleyball. Politicians should not shout their personal information across the court while playing. (Yes. That means you, Hillary.)

7. ISIS is a terrorist organization. The CIA suspects its supporters enjoy Faygo and responding to, “whoop, whoop” calls. Please report any and all insane clown activities.

6. Muslims ban all billionaire blowhards with fake hair. Oh, wait.

5. Bruce Jenner becomes first Kardashian woman with accomplishments. The world quickly implodes.

4. The Force Awakens… as do Furries with a Wookie fetish.

3. Despite recent Supreme Court decision, Katniss does not marry Greasy Sae in Hunger Games. Peeta rejoices and bakes bread.

2. The Dab and Nay Nay continue to perplex older white men.

1. Clemson coach Swinney refuses comment on demon butcher accusations. (But we all know he served more than pizza to the fans.)

15 Nerdy Reasons Why She Stopped Texting…

Have you ever been on a date you felt really well about, but it turns out the other party did not? I might be the poster child for this feeling. Honestly, why am I surprised when a girl drops off the face of the earth after one, two, or even three dates? Nevertheless, I can’t help but wonder what happened. I think it’s human nature to seek closure. So, I’ve collected the most plausible explanations for why my last date (I’ll call her Hermione) has not responded to texts or phone calls for the past week:

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Image Source: Flickr

15. She was abducted by aliens who periodically update her social media accounts.

I don’t try to be a creeper but a guy notices after he’s seen someone for a while. And if the History Channel has taught me anything it’s that the most logical explanation for any uncertainty involves probing and interstellar spacecraft.

14. I was sucked into a parallel universe where we never dated and Donald Trump wants to be President.

It kind of feels that way, when things are going good and you’re really into someone. It suddenly stops and you’re left thinking reality has disintegrated in some fashion. Trump talking on the television does not help matters.

13. Hermione is actually a superhero trying to protect me from an assortment of villains.

Now, if I could believe any of these, it might be this one. I have seen A LOT of superhero films and I would feel comfortable knowing she had my safety in mind. Plus, the Green Goblin freaks me out.

12. Her Hogwarts acceptance letter came and she chose magic over being a Muggle.

Building on the last, I can totally understand the desire to perform spells and spontaneously appear places. I’m a pretty sweet guy, but I can’t find you a real unicorn.

11. Doctor Who enlisted her as a new companion.

Zipping around the galaxy? I really think we could have done this Amy and Rory style, Hermione.

10. A higher power called and she’s building a MySpace page for Jesus.

Pamphlets will soon follow.

9. She’s joined the Borg collective.

Ironically, she never tried to assimilate me.

8. She’s secretly a cylon.

I didn’t get a chance to check her programming, but earth might be in danger.

7. The internet absorbed her like the TV in Poltergeist.

If she’s avoiding the light, it would explain her reluctance to return my texts.

6. George R.R. Martin named a character after her and now she’s dead.

Martin really does kill everyone. Women you go on dates with are no exception.

5. Spontaneous vacation to Alderaan. Oops.

I tried to tell her the Death Star was ready, but she stopped responding.

4. She volunteered as tribute in the Hunger Games.

But, hey, she’s happy with Peeta. I just need to find my Katniss. Or Luna Lovegood.

3. She’s on the run from Terminators.

I can forgive her for this lapse. Clearly, we’ve all been on the run from murderous cyborgs. Most of us just call them bill collectors.

2. A vindictive dinosaur took her captive

Unfortunately, I’m not a plumber…

1. Ganon has the Triforce.

Holy shit. There’s only one option when Hyrule is in danger. Get on Epona and ride!