A Pink Christmas

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Maybe it’s all the time I’ve been spending at my very pink pole studio, but I decided this year, my first in Florida, I was going to have a very pink Christmas since I couldn’t have a white one.

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I was planning on getting all my shopping done at IKEA this year, but all their stuff was red and white – totally cute but really going to clash with my pink Christmas tree that I’ve had for years.

I got these awesome handblown glass owls at Target, and the wreathes from Amazon and Michaels. The outdoor one had some hideous white lights on a white string that I had to pull off but with the shipping cost it wasn’t worth returning, so I improvised.

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I think the overall effect is glorious but apparently to the non-glitter initiated it’s (as one person posted on my Facebook pics) gaudy and hideous. I’m strangely ok with that.

T.A.R.D.I.S. Shoes!

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Guess what I’m doing in January, no really, go ahead… guess….

Nope!

I’m going to TIME LORD FEST! Ahhhh! And I’m dressing up as the T.A.R.D.I.S! Double Ahhhh!

And I’m not going to make the same mistake I made when I did an Emma Frost cosplay and decided to wear 7″ heels for hours on end. Don’t get me wrong, it was awesome, I just don’t want to do it again anytime soon (read: until PAX East).

The comfiest shoes I own are an old, broken in pair of Toms with a hole in the toe. But… T.A.R.D.I.Ses (Tardi?) don’t wear Toms, so I fixed the hole and painted them to match.

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Ta-da! I’m so so proud of how they came out! Totally freehanded from a reference photo.I was really nervous to do the lettering and really afraid that they wouldn’t be somewhat symmetrical.

Turns out acrylic paint is SUPER forgiving. I used some blue paint that I already had that was “metallic”. The end effect is really cool but I wouldn’t recommend it because it took 4-5 coats to get this color. For comparison, the standard white acrylic paint only took two.

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The Fun Of Pole

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Image Credit: missdrusilla.tumblr.com

“The fun of pole is that there’s always something new to master”

Someone told me this the other day and I think it’s the best thing I’ve heard in a LONG time!

From inverts to forearm stands, I can so frustrated when something new is introduced and I can’t do it the first (second, third, twenty-eighth…) time around.

It seems like every time I do get something down, I have a new archnemesis waiting around the corner to make me feel like the biggest noob all over again. It’s easy to start to feel like I’m just going to be struggling with new moves forever, that I’m never going to be good enough.

And in my spiral of pole self-shame, I missed the point… that’s the fun of it.

You get to have¬†that feeling of working really hard on something and then accomplishing it over and over and over again. There’s not a pole dancer on the planet who doesn’t have something they can work on. It’s not something that you check the boxes and then TA-DA you’re a master and there’s nothing left to learn.

There will always be new moves, they will always be hard, and if you work hard enough, you will always feel like a kid who just aced their spelling test when you get them. And that’s pretty freaking awesome.

It's Not Easy Being A Giraffe

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Cute and awkward, just like me ūüėÄ

 

Like it or not, in spite of all the diversity we preach in the present day, there are some things that just come easier to certain body types.

If you want to play basketball, it helps to tower over the other players. If you want to be a jockey, it’s useful to be pocket-sized. And my mother was once kicked out of a ballet studio after the instructor asked her “have you ever seen a six foot ballerina?!”
Pole dancing seems to fall somewhat in the middle – If you’re tall, you get some added flexibility since you have extra inches of limb to grab at. And, once you get them, most¬†tricks and spins look especially extra pretty with all that extra leg swinging around. The thing that I’m coming to terms with is that it is going to take tall girls like me approximately ¬†seven and a half times longer to get most things.
Like freakin’ forearm stands. I’ve been working on these suckers for over a week and a half. A girl came into the studio yesterday, her second class EVER, and whoop! There she goes, upside down on her head doing wavy legs against the pole like a pro. Where am I? Still on the ground with a headache and sore feet. I’m not too proud to admit I was more than a little jealous.
The frustrating thing is… height isn’t something you can change – you can lose or gain weight, get bigger nearly anything by way of plastic surgery. Go bottle blonde or bottle pink in a day. But when it comes down to it, I’m still going to be in danger of hitting my head on the ceiling.
It’s not easy being a giraffe.¬†

 

Women and Wine

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I spent yesterday sick as a dog on the couch. Which means, of course, that I spent an unfortunate¬†amount¬†of time on Facebook. Now, if you’ve been on Facebook for a long time, you’ll start to notice that pictures you thought were awesome… are not so awesome. Take my 18 year old self for example – she thought she was pretty damn hot. But when I look back at those pictures now, I see someone who hasn’t figured herself out yet.

18 Year old me wouldn’t have gotten within 100 feet of a pole, she’d of been curious about it, but never done anything about it. She didn’t dance in public and she wore (more or less) respectable shoes. Me at 26? Upside down on the pole, booty tooching and contemplating 8 inch heels.

Since freshman year I’ve gained 40 pounds, a bucket of bleach, and a cup size, but I’d like to think I’ve also acquired a better sense of self. When I’m curious about things, from pole dancing to pink hair, I go out and do them instead of thinking “wouldn’t it be cool if…”.

I used to worry so much about getting older, and 26 is still closer to 30 than I’m comfortable with. But I look at the ladies at my studio, mostly in their 30s and DAMN they’ve got this sense of self-assurance and confidence that I don’t think us 20-somethings can compete with. I see the super stars of pole, and none of them are 18. It gives me some hope that women, like wine, get better and stronger with age.

Sorry if this is super introspective and not at all interesting… I blame the antibiotics.

Emma Frost Cosplay

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Ok, so if you’re my friend IRL you’re probably sick to death of hearing about my halloween costume. You’re probably very excited that the holiday is over so it can go in a drawer and you don’t have to listen to me talk about the benefits of PVC versus latex. This is why we have the internet, I have a whole new audience of people to bore!

 

I cheated and bought the boots and cape but everything else was either handmade or altered. I added garters to the shorts, sewed the top and arm bands (which, sadly, you can’t see well) and painted and crafted the belt. Oh, and I went to an outdoor party in Ohio and FROZE MY WHITE ASS OFF. But before that, my pole studio in Florida had a party, so I had to make a few alterations.

 

I’m flying!!

 

It’s incredibly hard to make a costume that both looks good, leaves the necessary skin available for pole and doesn’t fall off while you’re hanging upside down in an inverted¬†crucifix. As an added bonus, it’s somewhat canon thanks to X-Men Origins. Though I’m sure she was much less worried about her clothes staying on…

 

And now, sadly, Emma goes back in the cosplay drawer – but only until PAX East. Only 4 more months until PAX!

Happy Halloween Pole People!

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Remember when you were younger and went to group functions, and you THOUGHT they were going to be awesome, but then you ended up sitting in the corner, talking to the one person you sort of knew and texting on your phone all night while the popular people laughed and socialized in the middle of the room making it all the more obvious that they were having a better time than you were? No? Then I’m very glad for you and your lack of social issues but anyway, the point is last night was nothing like that!

Pole parties are my new favorite thing on the planet! For our Halloween party last night, there were brand new never-touched-a-pole girls and seasoned I-teach-classes-in-badassness girls and everything in between. Before I got there, I was really afraid that it would be the really really good people showing off and the rest of us hiding in the corners, wishing we could do what they can. Instead, pole vets were teaching us middle-of-the-pole girls how to improve our moves, and even I could show the new-newbies basic climbs and spins.

Everyone was just happy to be there and everyone had something to show everybody else. I seriously think I had at least one conversation with every single person at the party. It was one of those magical moments in life where you look around and realize “I fit here”. There was no text message corner-hiding for this girl.¬†If my life were a bad 90s tween movie, there would be a perky theme song by a pop star playing in the background.¬†¬†It’s like high school SHOULD have been, but wasn’t.

Giraffes Can't Dance

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Took my first 201 class tonight. I knew that it was going to be rough when I looked around and the other students were the circus girl (dun), the amazing at everything awesome girl (DUN), and another instructor (dun DUN).

I spent the first half of class utterly frustrated, feeling like I couldn’t get anything right and that I was struggling through the moves by sheer force of will… and then I realized¬†that’s exactly how I used to feel in 101. And now, I feel strong and coordinated and damn sexy in that class. By my powers of deductive reasoning, these two facts tell me that if I continue to struggle through 201 I will at some point feel as fabulous there as I do in 101 now.

I think it’s easy to slip into a comfort zone – to do what you know and you’re comfortable doing over and over again and not want to feel like a wibbly wobbly awkward giraffe and put yourself out there to try something new. That’s when you need instructors who refuse to leave you at “good enough”. Lucky for me, I’ve got four of them ‚̧

This silly little kids’ book kind of defines my pole experience. I tried so many other dancing things: I was too tall to be a ballerina, didn’t have enough booty to pop-lock-and-drop-it, tripped over my own feet in tap dancing class… but pole fits. It’s my moon and stars to dance to.

BiPOLEr

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I think I’m pole bipolar. It’s either my favorite thing ever or I want to cry because I feel so¬†inadequate, or sometimes both. I look at photos from three months ago and think “wow, I’m making progress!”, then I watch videos of Jeyne Butterfly and go “I’m going to suck at this forever”.

In rage faces speak I go from  to

¬†and back again at least a couple times a week. I’m strange, I know.

Yesterday was such a frustrating pole day – I felt like I had no strength, I was uber slippery, and everything I tried to do just flopped. It felt like I was back in July when I first started all over again and even though the instructor and my classmates were super sweet, I left feeling pretty defeated.

So, knowing my bipolar rage face zen, I went back today and KICKED ASS. No one else showed up for either class so I had an hour and a half private lesson! I CAN FINALLY CLIMB! Next time you see me, I’ll be hanging the from ceiling like one of those creepy kids in the horror movies. Bwahaha.

I got my lay back (still need to straighten it out some), and did gorgeous and chair spins.¬†I’m also getting dangerouslllly close to my inverted-v.

What’s all this mean? Time to update the list! (Cue dramatic yet tacky game show music here)

Tricks I can do almost sort of do sometimes:

  • Teddy
  • Yogini
  • Polesit
  • Crucifix
  • Basic climb
  • Lay back
  • Seat
  • Basic invert
  • Inverted Crucifix
  • Ally-oop
  • Inverted-V

Spins I can do:

  • Dip Squat
  • Goddess
  • Fireman
  • Firelady
  • Princess
  • One-arm fireman
  • One-arm Herky
  • Herky
  • Dip squat into goddess combo
  • Underarm turn
  • Half underarm turn
  • Gorgeous
  • Chair

Transitions I can do (this I need to update but I can’t find names):

  • Body roll
  • Money maker
  • Snake

Currently working on:

  • Fan kick
  • Wrist sit
  • Martini

My Pole Mantras

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I was never one for mantras, I always thought they were useful, but not for me. Who wants to think the same thing over and over again? Then I started pole, and now I find that I have two that go through my head .

One is for before I get to the gym to get me there, after I leave when I’m a sweaty mess, and when I’m bruising like crazy and it’s something that the person who introduced me to pole said to me on the first day:

“You are so strong and beautiful”

The other is specifically for trying new tricks and holds, in those few seconds before you pick your foot up off the ground.

“This is going to hurt, it’s going to bruise, and you’re going to do it anyway”.

Personally I think the first makes me sound less like a crazy masochist than the second, so that’s probably the only one I’d admit to outside the pole community ūüėõ

So what about you? Do you have any pole mantras or words to live by? Anything that keeps you going?