Harlow Estrange Burlesque and Hoop

2:57 minute mark. . . WHAT????
4:17 minute mark. . . . WHATT?????

So much good stuff.

Fucking awesome.

Ok I’m done for today.

You’re welcome.



HoopPath Cleveland 2013 After Thoughts


Hoop Path Cleveland has come and gone.  It was a pretty intense weekend.  As far as the weekend, and physically.  I have some real gnarly bruises forming.


Over all I gotta say it was good.  It definitely kicked my ass.  It wasn’t as “deep” and “emotional” as I had hoped. . . Normally I look forward to the emotional release that these workshops provide, but I dunno.  I’m just so jaded and guarded these days . . . and the workshops were more about movement than anything.  At least I thought so.

Anyways, Friday night things started off great.  I was excited.  I made sure I hydrated all day.  I ate right before hand so that I would be good to go.  Took an allergy pill. . . Met up with my gal pal and off we went.

We started the workshop with an exercise that Baxter likes to call “sway”.  Its where you stand in your hoop (or outside) blind folded, and you just “sway” to the music.  It’s sort of to wake up your body.  The purpose of the blindfold is so that you don’t have to feel so self conscious about what it is your doing.  Normally when you are looking around at other people and what they are doing, it becomes very easy to start comparing yourself and then insecurities start to emerge.  To truly let go and connect with your inner self, he requires the blindfold.


We stayed blindfolded for about 3 songs.  Sway, and then we did a sort of just dance and feel the music type exercise, and then we hooped blindfolded.  Again, it’s so you can feel comfortable in your body and let go of any expectations and insecurities, and truly open yourself to learning and the experience.  If you are worried about what you look like to others the whole time, then how can you focus on the task at hand?

So after the blind fold hooping exercise (I should point out here, that very rarely if ever, do people collide.  You start to get a feeling of awareness of your surroundings.) We stop and that is when I noticed that my hands were starting to itch and were extremely red.

I’ve talked about this before, where I get these weird “allergic” reactions out of nowhere, and itchy hands is the 1st sign that a full blown attack is on it’s way.

I took another allergy pill, and thought it better that I should probably take a short break and let it do it’s thing.  I didn’t want to exasperate my condition, so I left the room and went to the bathroom.  When I looked in the mirror, I saw that I had broken out in a rash and hives were starting to pop out.

This was so not good.  Not on my 1st day of Hoop Path.

I tried to stay calm and relax, and hoped that the Benadryl I had just taken would take effect before things got really bad.  But alas, it did not.  I started to get that intense pain in my pelvic area . . . it felt like I either had to shit real bad, or give birth. To an elephant.

Since I didn’t drive myself to the workshop and rode with my friend, I felt I was kind of stuck.  I didn’t want to disrupt the class to pull her out, having everyone see me looking like. . .  I dunno what . . . and even worse, having to make her leave the class to drive me home.  I mean, we paid good money to be there.

I tried to get a hold of one friend to see if he could pick me up, but he just sort of blew me off, not really taking me seriously.  Apparently he had more important burning man preparation things to do.  (Thanks Dick.)

By this time, I was gone for about an hour, and I was just getting worse.

I went back into the bathroom to throw up a few times and then my friend whom I came with came in the bathroom to check on me.

After she took one look at me, she told me she was getting my things and we were going.  She was going to take me to the emergency room.  I of course argued with her but she wasn’t having it.  I had to convince her that this thing “happens” and really it will subside eventually and I will be ok.  It was decided that she would take me to meet up with my sister who was in the vicinity and my sister would drive me home.  (I mean, I didn’t want my friend to miss out on anything.)

It was horrible people.  I couldn’t breathe . . . I was having a hard time catching my breath . . . the pain was intense. . . I was shaking and itchy.  It sucked balls.

Once I got home (and good two hours later) my body finally calmed down and I fell asleep.

But what a start to the weekend.  Jeeze.  I looked up my symptoms and read that sometimes this “condition” is brought on by exertion or exercise.  Great.  Also I read that the pain I was having in my abdomen, could have been caused by hives on the INSIDE of my body.  That’s right.  THE INSIDE.  What the hell??

Could I be anymore of an anomaly?  Bone tumors, weirdo kidney bleeding and inside hives.

The rest of the weekend went off with out anymore “attacks”.  Which was good. I went back Saturday and had my ass kicked by 4 hours of intense hooping. . . Mostly working on shoulder hooping, angles breaks and paddles.  Then again on Sunday for another 4 hours of hooping techniques called Touch/Point, (where you use the tops of your hands or palms to manipulate the hoop for off body movement.  Yeah.  I know.  What?)

and Folding. (anytime the hoop “bends” in front of you, to the side, up your butt (jk). . There is a lot of swishing the hoop in folding.)

I got to see friends I don’t get to see very often , I laughed and danced with my hoop sisters, I ate really really good. . .I mean, it was a perfect weekend.  Just about.  Except for that episode.  But who cares.

Anyways, here were some thoughts I had during the workshop:

I wonder what I look like swaying. . . .


I have no idea what to with my arms.  I never do.  I’m just not comfortable with them.


Taaaaaay in da wiiiinnnn Jay!  Taaaaay in da winnnnn! 

(If you get this reference, you rule)



Cool. . . I see the color purple in my mind’s eye.


Fuck. . . .How much more swaying?  I’m tired. . . .


Man I am outta shape.  Swaying is kicking my ass.


I wonder if he makes faces at us while we are blindfolded. . . hmmmm. . . .


Wow, that was pretty cool. . For a while there. . I just “was”


I am open dude!

(He likes to walk around the room shouting OPEN OPEN OPEN OPEN OPEN OPEN)


Umm, hmmm, my hands are getting itchy.


Wow . . . my hands are really red.  Take another beny and get some water.


Fuck fuck fuck fuck

(This thought would commence for a few more hours as attack takes place.)


Find your breath. . . fuck. .. Do I have to poop?  What the fuck?  Man this hurts. 


Am I in labor?  Fuck Fuck Fuck Fuck Fuck.




Now my breath stinks.


I wanna go home. . .



Ok I’ll spare the rest of my thoughts during my episode . . .  But a few more things before I go.


Fuck Point and Folding.  I don’t have the coordination for it.  I have to think and perform like, trigonometry in my head to switch out the positioning of my hands. ..  And the arc of the hoop along with it’s velocity times the ratio time’s pi. . . .I do not have cat like reactionary reflexes for this.   (It’s ok if you don’t know what I am talking about. . . I don’t really know what I am talking about either.)


Coming to someone else’s workshop and schlepping your goods during circle time. . NOT COOL.


Fire fans…..psssh.  Whatever.  I’ve seen better.


That was a most excellent Gouda burger.


I need to fire hoop more.


I could totally make her outfits . . . ehhh who the hell am I kidding.  I am too lazy to make those kinds of outfits.


I can totally feel the difference in shoulder hooping, when I power through the back of my shoulders.


Where are his hands going when he breaks?  What the hell?  That is like ninja shit.  What?


How do I even reach across the hoop with my opposite hand to break?  Am I supposed to be using my opposite hand?  What?  Huh?

I dunno.  That’s all I can really remember.

Do I feel like I learned anything?  Mmmm. . . . Sort of?  There are miniscule changes to technique I think that I picked up.  I am sure at some point, I will get folding and Point down (that is if I practice.)

You know what?  I didn’t take one damn picture this year.  Very Unlike me.

Anyways. . . Good Hoop Path Cleveland.  I came, I saw, I hooped, It kicked my ass. . I kicked it some back.


I feel fat.

I had written this whole blog on it yesterday, about how I had totally pigged out the day beforehand, and my weirdo food issues and blah blee doo da. . then I picked up my hoop, worked on my routine a bit, and felt so much better afterwards.

I still feel a bit tubby. . .but fuck it.  I’m not gonna obsess and lament over it.  I just need t o get off my ass more.

Case closed.

In other news, I got my costume together,I have at least a minute and a half of my routine down. . .only about 2 more mins to go, which I am sure will be filled up with “seductive”, if not cheeky removal of clothing,
 and I am just about all moved in with all my shit put away and in place.

Life is good.

So so good.

Now give me a cheeseburger!


Burlesque Rock N Roll

I’ve noticed that lately, my posts have totally not been about hooping.  I know that when I started this thing, my goal was to keep a “hooping” journal so to speak, and keep it strictly about hooping and flow related activities.  As I have gone along though, I have come to see that my “flow” involves much more than just the hoop, hence all the yip yap about other goings ons etc.


I don’t seem to care really that I have gone the way side, after all I find this as a good outlet for all the jib jab that floats about my head. 


So to those who have been following, thank you for uh, reading my ramblings.



Having said all that though, I do have some hooping business.


I was approached to do another Burlesque show towards the end of next month.  It’s going to be a pretty good venue, very close to where I live and a variety of performers.  (Belly dancers, burlesque dancers, metal grinders. . .me.) So I am super stoked.


The theme is something like Women Rock, and while I am not sure I need to strictly “adhere” to the theme, I would like to incorporate a song that emphasizes empowerment of women.


Yet I am finding it contradictive to take my clothes off to a song that promotes strong womanhood and the I am woman hear me roar mantra. 

It’s not that I am a prude, I just have conflicted feelings when it comes to this sort of thing.


I feel that women should use their heads to get, well, get ahead.  Not their bodies.  Yet at the same time I also feel that women should embrace their bodies, no matter the shape or size, and if they wanna take off their clothes or use their sex appeal to get somewhere in the world, well I guess more power to them.  (But I would rather see a gal get ahead using her brains.  Cleavage and seducing men just seems soo cliché to me, and almost the easy way out.) 


Needless to say I am having a hard time finding a song that represents being a fun flirty woman owning my sexuality that is not represented in some stupid bubblegum pop way, and also something that I can hoop too.


I may just go with my Cherry Bomb routine, maybe spruce it up some. . .polish it up.

Yet, when I tried to do it the other day, I found myself sooo not into it. 


Maybe the fact that I had to listen to that goddamn song over and over and over and over and over and over when I 1st learned the routine?


Maybe indeed.


So that’s where I am with this one.  I need to come up with a good fun rocking song.  Preferably sung by a chick. 


And this time, I swear to Bob, that I WILL NOT PROCRASTINATE!


So off song hunting I go.


Overture, Curtain Lights

Tonight is opening night for the show.  Thank flippin God.  That means that I get my weeknights back, and don’t have to drive all over god’s kingdom come.  Not to mention that I will be able to go to bed at a reasonable hour now.  Something I am most excited about!

(*side rant. . . since when did I start giving a shit about getting enough sleep?  How did this sneak up on me?  I used to stay out and up all night.  Sure sure, I’d be dragging my ass to work the next morning, daydreaming of my pillow all day, and just telling myself I would have the weekends to catch up on sleep.  Man.  This whole being a growns up.  wtf?)

(*another side note. . . there is no such thing as “catching up” on sleep.)

Last night we had our final dress rehearsal and I got say, that it went quite well.

The theater had invited a few Senior Citizen homes to come out and be our audience.  So technically, It was our first show.  My director will argue and say no, because he still took notes.

There is that moment for me, when a show starts, and you hear that first reaction from the audience, and it makes all the bullshit you just put up with for the past month, oh so worth it.

Yes I bitched.  Yes I complained.  Yes I sat and sulked and rued the day I ever agreed to do this show, but it was all erased the moment I heard those old timers let out a uproarious laugh.  It was in that moment, I thanked the gods of theater for allowing me to be a part of an ancient art that brings so much enjoyment to others.

The energy mixing from the actors on stage with that of the audience is something that I find incredibly intoxicating and spiritual.

It’s why I do it.
So Break legs tonight!

On another note, I haven’t been posting much about hooping, because, well, I haven’t been hooping.  Maybe briefly when I went up to MI towards the beginning of last month.

However I saw this on Fb today, which caught my eye, and you know, I can’t just pass by flashy glowy things.

The Platonic!!!


(I tried to embed it here, but it won’t work form some reason, and I blog challenged, so click on the shit.)

From what I gather, it is just a prototype, but I gotta say it’s pretty darn cool.  I haven’t done much research on it yet, so I don’t know the price points and how it stacks up next to, say the atomic.

Gonna get back into my hoop mojo ya’ll!

fucking rad!


I think the universe must be feeling pretty bad about shitting on me for the last ohh, what?  8 months?  For now, it seems everything is turning itself around.

*knocks on wood*

I saw my second opinion guy yesterday and did one more CT urogram, which showed nothing in my kidney.  My cytology report came back, and that also showed nothing.  No atypical cells, no cancerous cells.  Nothing.

So after all the rigamaroo, his final diagnosis was, They don’t know what the hell was going on, or why, but everything looks good NOW, and that’s that.

If symptoms come back, then to call him immediately.

Other than that, at this junture, the whole saga with my kidney is done and over with.  I’ll go back in 3 months for a follow up.

So good news for that.

It is so odd though, everything that surrounded it. Bleeding for almost 5-6 months straight, the other Dr seeing some shit up in there. . . talk of having to have to remove it.  I seriously feel that there was probably a poltergeist in my kidney, pulling small blonde haired children in through the Tv and possessing evil clown dolls.


(Side note, Carol Ann was NOT pulled in though the TV. . . but actually the closet of her bedroom.  The TV just acted as a transmitter between dimensions.  I just want to be clear about this.  In case anyone tries to call me out on this shit.  I know my Poltergeist.)

Another happening, is that my old job called me and asked me to come back.  You know, the ones who just let me go about what?  a week or two ago?  (I am so HORRIBLE with time.)

Seems the new people who came in and bought the business are phasing out the fabric end of the old company and need someone who knows their shit on the drapery hardware end.  (that would be me.)

Funny.  I was let go and told that they had wanted people in their customer service dept that were both knowlegable in both the fabric AND drapery hardware end of things. . . if they were planning on focusing on just the hardware, then why didn’t they just have me stay?

I should point out that the two girls they did let stay, are leaving.  So that is why they are probably scrambling to get me back in.


I was told that I would get more $$, some vacation and sick days and that I would be eligible for immediate health insurance.

So I am “thinking” about it.  “Thinking” because I want to make sure this is truly the right thing to do.  I often act impulsivley.  I mean, right now it’s about 99% that I will go back.  But you know.  Whatever.

So there you have it.  Health on the up and up, and Job, on the uhh, umm. . i dunno. . . Job is there. 

So I feel pretty good about things as of now.  I got a plan.  I haven’t had a “plan” in, umm, i don’t think ever.  I’ll more than likely go back to work, in spring register for school and start working towards my degree in Child Life.  Cause it’s time.  You know?

And in the mean time, I will contiue to work on my root.  I’m riding my bike more.  I plan on starting up yoga.  I want to pick up my poi and hoop more.  More Plays.  I am also entertaining learning to tap dance. . . cause I’ve always wanted to. 

Let’s just have FAITH (not hope, for hope is sooooo fickle) that this momentum willl keep on going

Positive Flow.

I went to jam last week, and I gotta say, it was probably the best jam I have been to all year.  Then again, I think I have only gone to one other jam this year and left cause it was buggy and I didn’t know a single face there.


However, my mood for the night was actually a good one.  I felt very “open” and “receptive” to whatever. . . I was my usual fun self, which was a nice change from the standoffish closed scrutinizing person I have been. ( I don’t like that person.)


The crowd was pretty much all of my old flow peeps, so I am sure that had something to do with it.  There were also a gaggle of younger girls with hoops kind of off to one end of the park, just kind of hanging, so a few of us “oldies” went and introduced ourselves and told them to just come over and flow with us.  The girls seemed a bit hesitant, and pretty much kept to themselves the whole night, but you know, I didn’t give a shit.

I didn’t get caught up in their insecurities and hang ups.

Which is something that I know I have been doing for way too long.  Getting hung up in insecurities and what not.



I got in some good flowness with my hoop, and even picked up the poi for a bit.  Something I haven’t done since I performed my poi number for the Burlesque show. . . loooong ago.  (when was that?  I can’t even remember.)


A friend of mine was trying to teach me some butterfly variations, but it just felt like I was going to whack myself in the face.  I def need to work on my planes, especially my left, because I have all kinds of wonkiness going on.  But I would like to get the Crystal cases for my flow lights.  (which I hardly ever use, because of not having said cases.) I am hoping that once I get off my duff to do so, then it will be a big motivator to poi more.


A friend of mine had also busted out his ninja poi (which we had gotten him for his birthday) and those are pretty bad ass.  I would like me some of those.



However, word on the street now, is that they have poi that can spell out words and pictures and so forth.

I even felt a slight itch to burn.  But due to fire restrictions, it didn’t happen that night and by the time night rolled around I was pretty tired and wanted to get home.

All and all if felt pretty good to be in a good flow state.  There was good peeps, good jams, and just goodness all around.


Yet I think to the key to all that, again, was keeping an open and positive state of mind.   I hate that I have been feeling so bogged down lately, pulled into stupid worries and trying to control everything.

From here on out I am starting to be more positive.  I am looking towards all the things I am grateful for, no matter how insignificant or mundane they may be.  Nothing in life should be taken for granted.




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