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    BWS Stories - "You're So Vain"...Celebrating Physical Changes

    "You're So Vain"...Celebrating Physical Changes - Tai Chi and BagQua

    Dottie Rudder, Budget Analyst by day, Freelance Humor Writer by whenever the boss ain't looking ... She currently lives in Scottsboro, Alabama with her hubby, three dogs and one cat which her dogs call "Big Bad Earl." Dottie can be reached at

    Tai Chi and BagQua

    This is not for old, stiff, or fluffy people; I don’t care what anyone says. In my first class, I informed the instructor right away I would not and could not put my right toe behind my left ear. She said that Tai Chi and BagQua was not like that-- it was soft, fluid movements in conjunction with breathing, and would ultimately improve my flexibility. Yeah right.

    We started off easy; reaching up and picking a few make believe grapes while inhaling and exhaling, all of this done by standing still and using just your upper body. I thought this is easy, piece of cake. She taught us to cool the white crane’s wings, catch the sparrow by the tail, repulse the monkey, and ask the horse for directions. Then everything changed. She said we had to walk, kick, and pivot on our toes while performing these unnatural acts with the make believe animals. Huh? What was she, some kind of sadist?

    Needless to say, I kicked when I should have walked and pivoted when I should have kicked. We were supposed to practice, practice, practice. I decided I practiced in class and that was enough. Our instructor did say that although Tai Chi was used to improve flexibility, you could defend yourself, if needed. One good kick to the groin, she said, would disarm an attacker. I told her that unless my attacker was a midget, all I could kick would be his ankles. She rolled her eyes and assured me I would improve. Yeah, right.

    We had all kinds of people in our class; most of them leaping around like slender gazelles and looking very graceful, while I, on the other hand, resembled a constipated Hippo as I bounced from wall to wall. Oh, and get this, they installed mirrors all around the walls so we could see ourselves. How sick is that? I know it improved my pivots … Yeah, right.

    In class last week, the instructor laughed behind her dainty hand and said she thought I was directionally challenged. I said “It is not my fault, I’ve cooled a flock of crane’s wings, pulled the tail feathers out of umpteen sparrows, slapped the monkeys silly and even asked the horse for directions, and you know what? The horse didn’t say crap! So it is not my fault.” She collapsed laughing and said she really did love me. Yeah right.

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