Disclaimer: I'm hella late on this ice bath bus, but I'm so turnt, I'll be the last one waving the flag for it when they tell us it's a hoax. So be it… I believe! Woo Woo Trigger Warning: this newsletter contains a lot of extraaaaaa, so if you are sensitive, I'm sorry not sorry.. And also, some of my best friends have manbuns.
THE TODOS SANTOS ICE BATH CHRONICLES
We had just finished our breathwork. Four rounds of solid heaving for four minutes each with a two-minute retention.
This is the kind of activity that makes your fingers curl and your feet stomp.
With the sensation of floating. You might catch the sight of a grandparent long gone. Or, if you are lucky/unlucky, start to cry about something that happened in fourth grade you forgot completely. Or, most commonly, just give you the knowledge that you haven't inhaled and exhaled with purpose in a long while.
Manbuns to the front!
We get in line for the ice plunge, holding onto our super-oxygenated mind-body complexes, steadying ourselves for the cold. It’s almost my turn and I make a dj request. Can we put on the new Andre 3000? The thought of a legendary rapper playing flute during my icy soak tickles my karmic pickle.
Suddenly, a deep energetic thud. And its echo.
“He can’t do that!”
This manbun from Minnesota rolls his eyes, and continues: “He’s a rapper. One of the best. And now, flute? He should go back to rapping. He's not a flutist. He's a rapper. He can't do this." Wow. This dude was really upset. From what I could gather, his favorite (maybe not before, but surely, today - thanks for reminding him) rapper has now taken a sharp left turn into new artistic territory. Why???????? I could hear his 10-year old inner child disappointment. His system had now become disregulated.
I resist holding him in my arms and cooing in his ear that it'll be okay, and brewing up some kava to ease his tension. Instead hear myself say "Andre 3000 is a real artist, and one the best..." I trail off, choosing my hip hop battles. I briefly consider cutting the bun, but instead just exhale, hold the rails, and slip into the sparkle.
Four minutes and a bit.
Who is counting anyway?
Check out my unabashed love letter to the Hiero Crew.
(happenstance, in an Outkast shirt)
My first boss out of college, Domino of the mighty Hieroglyphics Crew, told me when I was 22: “If you are the same when you are 30 than you were when you were 20, you’ve got a problem. And if you’re the same when you are 40, you're in even deeper trouble."
As we know, change is inevitable (hopefully), and we are destined to evolve. If we are lucky, it's emergent: from the inside out. Sure, our lives change from exterior bang ups, societally-approved choices, or planned-for/worked-for improvements, but there's also an internal whisper (thank you, Charlotte Connors - more on her in coming writings). These deep inquiries that can pass like a hummingbird (what was that?), but if you can harness them for a good look, they can lay the breadcrumbs for your path to change. To dharmic work.
Honestly, I've been wondering how long that whisper stirred in Andre. Did it start after the commercial success of The Love Below? Like, enough musicals, let's get to spirit music, ala Alice Coltrane? I am curious about the moment when he tried that flute… when he began to cultivate this new language for himself - not through voice, but breath. Whatever it was, there was obviously a piece of him that said "try this" and more importantly, a part of him that listened. Now it's proof is public record, and our audial aperture is all the better for it. Lucky us.
Took a lot of chutzpa. Because (obviously, but not always available) when we allow for something new, perhaps even old (older than we know), to peek through our life, or play practice, our way of being, and for these purposes - our work grows.
And with that, we keep the big wheels turning. Smell what I'm cooking?