Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Why hula-hooping by an almost-40-year-old should only be attempted under the supervision of a qualified physician

I was lazily preparing breakfast on Saturday morning (not rushing to make school lunches and breakfast at the same time like I do from Monday to Friday) when I heard Rob Burwash's sleep-inducing voice announce that there would be a hoop-a-thon/hoop dance/hoop thingy on Sunday afternoon in front of the National Art Gallery.  A woman came on to talk all about it - hoopers (yes, that's what they're called) from all over Ottawa would gather with their hoops and hoop til the sun went down.

It took me all of about 4 seconds to decide where I would be on Sunday afternoon.  Because hooping = awesome.

Emily and Hope really like hula-hooping and so does their mother (not that I imbibe often but when I have I rather love it).  Emily is especially fond of it along with her friend, Rebecca.  In fact, I even made hoops for them all last year (it is really fun to make your own hoops and they are SUPERIOR quality to the poor excuse for a hula hoop that you find at Canadian Tire).  And so, I invited Rebecca and our neighbour, Anna, to join Emily, Hope and me on Sunday afternoon to hoop the day away.

Here is what we saw when we arrived (after driving all over God's green Byward Market to find a parking spot):

Coordinated hoop dancing!

There were piles of hoops to be tried - all homemade jobbies of course - and we tried many.

The favourite was this giant hoop:

I hooped right along with all the girls while trying to perfect some tricks (or at least get them to a point where the hoop wasn't hurtling across the brickwork at breakneck speed aiming to remove a tooth from an unsuspecting hooper or non-hooping innocent bystander).

We stayed for two hours.  I was hooping for about 90 minutes of that.

As I said, I don't exactly hoop a lot.

So it shouldn't come as a surprise that the next day I was whining incessantly mentioning on Facebook that my back was hurting.  And later that day, I tried to bend over and pick something up and could barely stand upright without the help of that "I've fallen and can't get up" contraption due to my abdominals being in shreds.  Oh and also, my neck hurt.  I think I hurt my neck when I was perfecting my neck spin/launch the hoop to my hands trick that was oh-so-awesome and yes, it will appear on Youtube someday or at least on Canada's Got Talent.

A good number of people were there - it seems mostly hooping teachers and their families/friends - and us.  And then a slightly strange woman who attached herself to our little posse.  She was nice and friendly and really liked kids and I assumed she was there with her own kids but then she said and did a few things that made me realize that there is no way she has kids.  Like, for example, she was INSISTENT that we pose for a photo with the hoops arranged JUST SO and everyone SMILING and LOOKING AT HER... RIGHT NOW.  SIGH.  WHY AREN'T YOU LOOKING OVER HERE?  And me thinking... you do not have kids because someone with kids would not even attempt to get a staged artistic shot with four girls, one of whom is five years old and all of whom have been HOOPING for almost two hours.  Because we all know that that would only be attempted in order to illustrate why you should never attempt it.

That grimace is me wondering why I didn't stop this idea in its tracks.
And then she insisted on drawing portraits of the girls right after I suggested I take them for hot chocolate before heading home.  So now we have four tired girls with the hot chocolate carrot dangling in front of them being asked to sit quietly and NOT MOVE after hooping for two hours.

Recipe for success!

It would have gone more quickly if Emily's damn hair hadn't been so difficult to translate to the page.

But we did finally get the hot chocolate, and a sketch of the girls, and lots of stories to tell.

And possibly a hernia.


Mary Lynn said...

I LOVE hula-hooping. But 90-minutes of it? Wow--that's a lot. I always find the hardest part is holding my arms up away from the hoop.

Anonymous said...

what a funny story, karen! (i can say that because i didn't have to deal with the zany woman!).
MAKE YOUR OWN HULA HOOP?? how have i never heard of that?! what a project!
so glad you got to join in the fun...although these reminders that we're not *so young* anymore are a little sobering!
the girls were absolute gems to put up with the "photo shoot" and posing!

little b said...

You left out the part about the crazy woman when we talked. That sounds very weird. But the rest sounds like a lot of fun.