Coach

That time I didn’t go to Italy

Teacher. I haven’t quite figured out how I feel about him: a mix of horrified fascination, admiration and friendship. He has the knack of inspiring loyalty amongst his students even as the ones that have known him for years confess to a frequent desire to punch him in the solar plexus. Seems about right.

Much can be forgiven in a man that has all of the moves, and dances for dancing’s sake. Where Teacher goes, people follow, because he is sure to spread laughter and the contagious joy of dancing.


He makes me shake my head in amazement, often.

Exhibit A: an international wake-up call

I got an unexpected call from Teacher this morning. He is at some dance festival in Italy, with his dance partner and one of his best friends (a brilliant dancer and DJ). Teacher had been looking forward to this festival. So why on earth was he calling me at 7am on a Saturday? Groggily, I picked up.

Vanilla, these niggas tried to start a fight with me. Yo man, I’m so pissed right now. That’s not nice, what they did. That’s not nice. Why?! I dunno, they tried to fuck with the wrong nigga, thinking I’m all soft. Who? These niggas, I told you. No no, I’m ok, I’m fine, you don’t have to get on a plane and come here and box the shit out of them.

Oh I don’t?! Good he mentioned that just in time, of course I was half way out the door, toothbrush and passport in hand. Vanilla the boxing bodyguard, that’s me.

He hung up shortly after that, without telling me who or why. I haven’t heard from him since. In normal circumstances, with normal people, I would be wretched with worry. With Teacher, I am resigned to the fact that there is a 25% chance he will end up in an Italian jail, a 25% chance “those niggas” will end up in an Italian jail while Teacher is praised in all the newspapers as a local hero, and a 50% chance that in 3 weeks time I will stumble on some pic on Facebook of Teacher hugging and laughing with those dudes with not a care in the world, because they are actually cool people and “it was just a misunderstanding”.


I shared this story with Coach, who loves a good laugh. Specifically the part where I’ve now learned that the appropriate reaction to being woken up at 7am bc my friend got into an almost-fight overseas is to say “Stay put, imma be right over in about 9-12 hours and then I will fuck shit up.”

Coach shook his head, and then commented innocently, “Yes, Teacher is a rather passionate guy.” Ya think?! But then again… That time I got mugged, Coach promised to hunt the guys down and give them a “talking-to”. I am wondering if this is a bit of a cultural thing; demonstrating honor and loyalty to one’s friends in hyperbolic phrasing of grand gestures that don’t necessarily need to materialize.

You don’t have to get on a plane and come here and box the shit out of them.

P.S. I did say that Coach knows all the black people in Montreal, yeah? Further evidence. Of course, Coach knows Teacher. I should have known.

 

My street cred: I am so smrt

I woke up with a bad headache, which progressively worsened throughout the day. A hangover, really?! I didn’t drink THAT much last night. Some beer with supper, a glass of wine at my friend’s bday and a splash of delightful 15 year Guyanese rum. Must be the rum. Those bastards. I launched the emergency recovery procedures – a hangover on Monday is pretty shameful, gotta be productive, yo! I hydrated myself. Ate greasy, carby food. By 3pm, I’d maxed out my Advil consumption for the day.

I was really perplexed by this hangover sitch. Could it be old age? My bday is in 2 months and 10 days, one year closer to becoming a senior citizen. At one of my many bathroom breaks, the consequence of my diligent hydration policy, I noticed a smudge under my chin. Tried to rub it away, except it wouldn’t fade.

And that is when I understood. Not a hangover. No.

A mild concussion.


I went to the gym on Saturday. First time since March 2nd. Such a happy reunion with Coach and my crew. We skipped happily about in a circle, holding hands, in blissful companionship. Except really, we did burpees and bear walks, and Coach laughed at all our swearing and sweaty misery. Same thing.

During the warm-up set for our work-out of jerks (not the male variety; the lift), I boasted how 65lbs was too light a weight, “I’ve been gone for 5 weeks and look at that: no loss in strength. I’m AWESOME. I’m an AMAZON. BEAST MODE ON!!!!” And immediately rammed the barbell straight up into my chin, full-speed at max acceleration. I saw stars, felt my brain bounce back and forth in my skull and dropped the bar.

Coach, unperturbed, watched me and asked me kindly to refrain from killing myself on my first day back, “10 years I’ve owned this gym. Not one death. Please, Vanilla, brain-damage only, that’s to be expected in a boxing gym. But I’d rather not find out what my insurance policy covers with regards to client self-inflicted loss of life.”

I finished the workout, despite my swollen jaw, and the red bruise under my chin. Complained of a headache, like the ones I used to get after sparring.

I drank the whole weekend.

Spent all day today staring at a computer screen.

At no point did I connect the dots, and realize this was worse than getting a clean, brutal uppercut to the jaw, and with my history of (mild) boxing concussions, my grey matter is rather sensitive to getting bruised. Instead I did 100% of the things doctors tell you not to do when concussed. Woohoo!!! Brain damage for the win!!!!

Part of me is relieved that I am not allergic to delicious Guyanese rum. That would have been a real tragedy.


I tried to take a selfie, for the blog, to prove the extent of the jaw bruise (it has spread in size since Sat. In the next 48 hours, it will develop a charming yellow hue, sexy zombie-style). I failed. So I slapped on a filter to my pic, and behold, my artistic failed selfie:

Kim Kardashian would be so impressed with my selfie skills, I just know it. DUCK FACE!!!!

FYI – I’ve a history of breaking parts of my body:

18 hours in the life of a single girl

Friday night: the art of turning down a date

I had a rough week emotionally, yeah? This and this and this.

Friday morning, I was exhausted as soon as I opened my eyes. In exchange for fulfilling my adulting obligations of going to work, I promised myself that I’d spend a quiet evening at home doing laundry, sipping on some locally brewed cider and reading a book. I couldn’t wait. After a useless day at the office (#braindead), I got stuck in endless traffic – cementing my resolve to be a Friday-night hermit. By 7pm, groceries were done, PJs and fluffy pink slippers adorned me and I was all set to win ALL of the dance-offs against myself to Ed Sheeran’s Shape of you.

The phone rang as I was starting the washing machine. I declined the call.

The phone rang again – same dude – as I was cracking open my first bottle of cider. I declined the call, texting Dude1, “You’re pocket dialing me.” He replied, “No, you idiot, I don’t pocket dial twice in a row. PICK UP.” So of course, instead of picking up, I finished prepping my load of laundry. Then I hydrated myself with cider. THEN I called back Dude1 (#priorities); he was inviting me last minute to join him for foodstuffs and drinks.

In case y’all were wondering, it is impossible to diplomatically tell a guy “I’m turning you down because I prefer doing my laundry.

Ooops?

#IreallyenjoyedmyGrandmaFridaynighttho

#Itotallykilledthosedanceoffs

Saturday morning: how to unsexify sexting

Saturday mornings = savage workouts with Coach Dr. Booté. One simply does not mess around with Coach and his workouts. If he requests the pleasure of our presence at a certain hour, we show up. On time. Ready to go. That is just how it works with Coach. #bossyman

So, it stands to reason that despite finding myself in the midst of a rather successful sexting session with Hickster, when the clock chimed 11am, I told Hickster I had to go workout. He requested I send him a naughty pic in exchange for my impending silence. I apologetically refused: no time, no way I would risk Coach’s wrath! I suggested Hickster use his imagination or the internet instead, bc I’m helpful like that.

Giggling, I told Coach and the boys what had just happened. The reactions included:

  • “Who sexts at 11am?”
  • “Who doesn’t sext at 11am?”
  • “So you just gave a guy blue balls by text?”
  • “Of COURSE you shouldn’t be late to MY workouts. Clearly, this bro doesn’t realize that MY workouts are the reason you have a sextable booté in the first place. He needs to learn.”

One of the guys suggested that I send a “dirty” video of me all hot and sweaty working out like an Amazon, lifting heavy shit. “Hey baby, this is what you meant, right? I’m so dirty. And I can whoop your ass. Bye!”

Hickster didn’t find it hilarious. Hihi.

#ittakesavillagetounsexifysexting


Because sharing is caring, behold Vanilla’s dirty videos:

And another, by which time I’d forgotten the stated objective of the videos, bc I was consumed by the pain of my burning muscles.

My booté saga: a chapter at the office

Not the point of this post – part 1

Clothes. I like how they can be a form of self-expression. I also like analyzing why I put on wtv outfit I do in the morning: sometimes it reveals stuff on my mind, or a mood, that I wasn’t fully aware of. For example, last week, when discussing vanity, I put on that outfit because I felt it was a perfect mix of professional, sexy, fashionable and stylish (those are NOT the same thing!) and made my facial features pop. That was the version of myself I felt needed emphasis for a day with the auditors and a board meeting at night: during those meetings my intelligence would be on display anyhow so I wanted to highlight the other, more appealing aspects of myself to balance everything out. In contrast, earlier this week, I scheduled a meeting with CFO-boss that was likely to be very tense: I needed to communicate 1-2 messages that he wouldn’t be delighted about, and I had a vested interest in convincing him to endorse my proposed action plans. What did I wear? Something very corporate? No, my boss knows I am smart AF, that is why he hired me, no need to emphasize that. Something sexy? No, he’d find that displaced, no sense in unconsciously irritating him. Something very fashion forward? No, he is an accountant. So I wore work slacks, and a baby pink finely knit sweater – the kind that is office-appropriate but makes you wanna hug the person. Simple makeup, glasses, and an outfit to highlight that I am a cute, adorable girl. I chose to dress in such a way as to offset my strongly-worded arguments and my intense emotions, as those would be abrasive enough for my boss. It worked.

Not the point of this post – part 2

My team is young. Young enough that they are all on Facebook, and we are Facebook friends, weeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! (We are also coworker friends, but as everybody knows, if it isn’t on Facebook, it isn’t real). As such, they sometimes read this blog. The things they know about me! Makes me blush, except it doesn’t, bc #vulnerability, y’all. Anyhow, they know both this story about my dismay about my shrinking butt, and this epic prank by Coach Dr. Booté. A good story is a good story, even if it makes me sound like a vain, superficial twit. Bc I am totally not a vain, superficial twit, no way. I am a vain, superficial, nerdy SMART twit. Obvi.

The point of this post

Yesterday at work, I was checking out my outfit in the mirrors of the ladies washroom. I had a meeting in late afternoon with a supplier, and I’d chosen an super corporate dress for that purpose: previous meetings had left me with the impression that the supplier did not respect me to the extent I desired, thinking of me more as a girly girl than as a business woman to negotiate with. I was evaluating the severity of my outfit, distracted by the excellent workmanship of the cut (discreetly flattering, of course, because #bougie), when my youngest team member walked in. She pointed to me checking out my profile and consoled me with a smirk,

Vanilla, if you are worried about your butt being flat in that dress, I promise you it’s not.

Consider this a free lesson in How to Get Your Staff to Respect You 101.

#onpoint #howwellsheknowsme #hmph #thisvainsuperficialnerdysmarttwitisalsoademandingslavedriver #iswear #irunatightship #butmyshiphasbooty #teambootyaccountants

Booté post afterword

A little video of my latest attempt at mimicking a Pussycat Doll.

5 types of cereal

I love my boxing crew. And yes, they are still my crew even if I no longer box; I do the weightlifting and conditioning class 2x a week with Coach (re: Dr. Booté and Dr. Booté strikes again) and realistically, it is only a matter of time until I put the gloves back on. My home away from home. My happy place.  Anyhow, my boxing crew likes alcohol. And to party. And to be loud. And to occasionally throw chairs and start fights with scary bikers (I can’t elaborate, I wasn’t there. It remains something of a myth at the gym). Basically, I’ve never been to a party with my boxing peeps that didn’t involve piss-in-your-pants laughter and good times. Last Saturday was one such party.

At the party was a former boxer, who I will call Cereal due to his habit that night of walking up to people and randomly asking them to name 5 types of cereal in 10 seconds – go! (Surprisingly entertaining, as far as gambits go.) Cereal is as Québecois as they come. Think a rougher version of Patrick Huard, from my favorite movie, Bon Cop Bad Cop:

Cereal and I have bumped into each other at the gym for close to 5 years, he even acted as my coach in my corner for one fight, but this was the first time we actually partied together. Cereal is renown for becoming slightly colorful when he drinks, making him a perfect fit with my crew because #chairthrowing y’all. I was prepared to be entertained.

It was after midnight, when well-“hydrated” Cereal explained to the room at large (in loud, beautifully vulgar and vivid Québecois that I will never be able to adequately replicate),

For the longest time, I really didn’t like eating pussy. Wait, no, that’s not true. I was young, tsé, and I thought sex was just about cumming, I didn’t particularly care about the girl, but then I got wiser, and I learned that girls LIKE having their pussy eaten! Yeah, they really like that shit! No, its true! So, I started training for it. No, really. I trained for it. I’m ok with being honest, I’ve got nothing to hide: I wasn’t very good at it. I had to practice and practice. Like boxing! Repetition makes perfect. And I practiced a lot! I’m fucking good at eating pussy, like you wouldn’t believe. And now I tell all the young guys at the gym: eat pussy.

Cereal decided it was only right that he show one of the younger guys in the room some of his tongue techniques, despite Young Dude protesting that really, no, he was quite good with his own skill set. Cereal would not be deterred from his altruistic purpose. He approached Young Dude with intent, and right as he was about to brandish his tongue in Young Dude’s face with impressive bravado, Young Dude yelled at him, “5 types of cereal – go!” Cereal started naming all the cereals he could think of. Young Dude’s face of relief, tho. LOL.

[Now we get to the part of the story that I am less comfortable with my father reading. Hi Pa! Stop reading! Aunts and Uncles, y’all can stop too!]

Cereal approached me, as I was talking to Nene. Man on the prowl. “Vanilla, can I ask you a question?” Of course. “It’s a bit of a confidential question.” That’s cool. Me and Nene, we tight. Anything you want to say to me, you can say in front of Nene. “Yeah, that’s true. Nene is a gentleman, esti! Ok, so here goes. Vanilla, do you like getting your ass eaten? Yeah? You do? On a scale of 1 to 10, Vanilla, how much do you like it? 7.5?! Wow, you like it a LOT.” Nene’s face of comical dismay, as he turned to stare at me, his impression of Vanilla completely shattered, is LOL#2 of the party. [Disclaimer: I did say this part shouldn’t be read by my father. Ok. So Pa, if you are feeling nauseous right now reading this, it’s NOT MY FAULT.]

And now for the coup-de-grâce. “Ok, Vanilla. Here’s my offer. Any time you feel like it, between now and the end of the night, you just ask me, and I will eat your ass so good, you won’t just like it 7.5, no. You’ll like it at least 8. Maybe even 8.5. Oh yeah! You’ll like it THAT much. 8.5! That’s a pretty good number. So any time you like, just let me know. That’s what I am prepared to do for you. And you don’t need to worry, I’ve been single for 3 years, and I’ve been tested for all the STDs, I’m squeaky clean, calisse. So yeah. Let me know if you want me to eat your ass. Offer expires at the end of the night. (sotto voice:) Actually, it expires in 2-3 months, because I am generous like that. Yeah. That will be our little secret. (normal voice:) So, you just think on that, Vanilla.  It’s not every day you get that kind of offer. Think on that real good. I don’t want you making any snap decisions.” Turning to Nene, who listened to this entire exchange with a look of rapt incomprehension, Cereal fist-pumped him, “So tell me, Nene, have you ever heard an approach so sincere, so honest, and so nasty?” Cue LOL #3. Cereal stayed true to his word, and gave me time to think about it. He walked tipsily away, leaving me and Nene in helpless giggles.

I did say piss-in-your-pants laughter, yeah?

P.S. No ass was eaten that night. [Ok Pa! You can start reading again! It’s safe now!]

P.P.S. I am not being a Mean Girl by writing this post. By Monday night, this story had spread all over the gym. I am not sure who got teased more, myself or Cereal. But the general consensus is that, no, no one has ever heard an “approche aussi sincère, honnête et cochonne.”

Dr. Booté strikes again

My dance school is conveniently located on the 2nd floor of the same building as my boxing gym. I sometimes stop by the gym on my way to/from dance to say hi to all my friends. Last night was such a time. I was almost 2 hours late for a social hosted by my school (thats code for a big salsa/kizomba/dancehall dance party that goes from 9pm-3am. It’s like dancing at a club except with none of the disadvantages: less crowded, better music, not a single underage, underdressed shrill teenage girl in sight, no lineups at the bar, the men actually know how to and want to dance, and aren’t there ogle the women). Despite it being close to 11pm, I figured my boxing crew would still be at the gym, as Friday evenings are when the competitive team spars, and then sits in the gym past closing time and drinks 1-3 bottles of vodka and rum. What? Hydration is an important part of any athlete’s regimen. Obvi.

As I walked down the stairway into the gym, I could hear the bursts of Coach and my former teammates laughter. I ran to them, excited, only to be met with a slightly awkard silence. “Oh hi Vanilla. Ummm, we were just talking about you. Well, we were talking about you and your shrinking ass.” Really, we are still stuck on this? “Of course we are still stuck on this. Vanilla, you had the nicest butt in the gym! Boxers would get distracted and forget to keep their guard up. It was perfection. Now… Now it’s nothing special. It’s meh. DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND HOW UPSETTING THIS IS TO ALL OF US GIRLS AND GUYS ALIKE?!!!!” My teammates were staring at me tipsily earnestly, willing me to understand the gravity of the situation. I glanced over at Coach, his eyes were twinkling not-tipsily at the absurdity of the situation.

Here I was, thinking that they’d all be happy to see me, and maybe compliment me on my weightloss & sexy outfit. Nope. Apparently not. What is a sexy outfit where there is lost ass?

In a mild huff, I left them to their booze and went upstairs to dance my ass-grief away. And dance I did, for although there were less men than women present, I was never at a loss for a partner. Hmph. Some men, apparently, either thought I was a phenomenal dancer (which I soon will be, at this rate #modest) or else they found me quite to their taste. Which makes sense since I looked fab. Did I mention #modest?

After an hour and a half of dancing, a dude approached me and started talking to me. I assumed he was trying to flirt, which was acceptable to me because he was taller than me, had good shoulders and a nice smile #standards.

Can I be totally honest with you? You are REALLY fine, like so fine, but you know what would just make you tops? If you had just a bit more ass. No, I’m serious, don’t take this the wrong way, because seriously you are beautiful, and I was watching you dance, you got the moves, but the only thing stopping you from being perfect is your ass. You need just a little bit more.

You know when you have too many thoughts in your head, that your body is incapable of any reaction? I was completely bemused at the statistical unlikelihood of me having the same conversation twice within 2 hours, once with a stranger. Also, I had an overwhelming urge to collapse into giggles which distracted me from my efforts to memorize Stranger’s exact words – it was hard to ignore the bright flashing “BLOG CONTENT THIS IS BLOG CONTENT” sign hanging over us. And throughout all this, I wondered if it was at all possible that he could know Coach; but then my politically correct brain pointed out that just because Stranger was black and Coach is black, that did not provide me with enough reason to assume they knew each other… racial profiling much? Coach does not know EVERY black person in Montreal. (My politically correct brain forgot about this incident, which supports the theory that Coach does in fact know every black person in Montreal.)

Stranger stopped talking, misinterpreting my slack features (caused by my short circuiting brain) as a sign that I was about to lose my shit. He hesitantly asked me, “Wait… you ARE the girl that knows Coach, right?! Oh God, please tell me you train with Coach.” Stranger’s panic mild worry might be my favorite moment in the whole prank. Because prank indeed it was. Coach knew Stranger was going to the same social as I, and convinced him to do this.

dr-boote-prank

And that is why I love Coach Dr. Booté. Only he can produce simultaneous feelings of rage and admiration for a prank well executed.

P.S. Once Stranger was reassured that I wouldn’t murder him, we danced for a couple of songs. Guy’s got the moves.

Dr. Booté

Since quitting boxing 2 months ago, I’ve lost 10-12lbs (8lbs currently, I’m still recovering from Canadian Thanksgiving, oops). Partly because I’m training less, so I’m less hungry and am eating less. Partly because of a morbid fear of losing my physique, so I’ve been careful with my food. Partly because of two doctors appointments which scared me into realizing I’m at the age where health can no longer be taken for granted and it’s a matter of time and discipline (nutrition and exercise) before my mother’s genetics catch up to me. Partly because of work stress so bad, eating made me nauseous. Point is, I’ve lost a lot of weight, and the general consensus (other than Beaut who complained about my flat(ter) ass) is that I look fab. For the first time in my life, I’ve been called a skinny bitch, which made me so happy.

I’ve been a little worried about falling back into my neurotic/borderline eating disorder ways of the past. At Thanksgiving, one of my cousins cautioned me that I seemed awfully concerned about remaining slender. She relaxed a bit when she observed my usual capacity to eat disturbing quantities of corn bread and apple pie and my subsequent complaining of foodbabies. But I am not gonna lie, I’ve been overly preoccupied about my seeming inability to shift the Thanksgiving weight, and my newfound cravings and appetite. What can I say? I like being a skinny bitch. I’ve never been one. I like getting all these compliments. I am vain.

This past week, I finally returned to Coach: the deal when I quit boxing was that I’d continue with his weightlifting & conditioning classes twice a week. Perfect, really – I’d continue with some of the workouts that had given me the physique I adored, see my friends and I’d still bask in the comfort of Coach’s zany personality. However, during the past two months, with everything going on (Labor Day weekend, Thanksgiving, other work commitments), I’ve only managed a very sporadic attendance. This week marked my renewed commitment to consistent training.

On Workout 1 this week, Coach greeted me with a hug, and then a cry of dismay,

Vanilla! Your booty! Its GONE! Why Vanilla, Why???? It was such a work of art, my pride and joy, promotional material for my gym. Now, you better not tell anyone that I am your Coach. This is terrible. We have to fix this.

Ok then.

On Workout 2 this week, Coach designed a killer circuit to end the class. 5 rounds/16 minutes (whichever came first) of:

  • 20 weighted lunges (25lbs plate for the girls, 45lbs plate for the boys)
  • 15 burpees
  • 8 pullups

The girls were allowed an elastic for the pullups. Coach insisted I take one of the less resistant elastics, because, “you are a skinny bitch, you have nothing to lift. What do you weigh now, a $1.50? Pocket change!” Hmmph.

I was the only one who almost completed the 5 rounds withing 16 minutes (I finished my last 3 pullups right after the bell). The guys made it to their 5th set of lunges, and the girls were almost done their 4th round. I had done really really well! As we sat in silence, heavy breathing, two of the boys congratulated me for whooping their asses. Coach interrupted them with, “yes, well, that is because she no longer has any junk in her trunk. Its pretty easy to move around when you aren’t carrying anything.”

If I was worried about developing an unhealthy obsession with being thin, Coach certainly has imposed a different narrative. One based on athletic performance and healthy curves. I suppose that is why his nickname is Dr. Booté.

#goodman

#noanorexiaforthisgal

#amazonwayoflife