Stuff I Talk About

by Christina Ledbetter

The Park

On Saturday morning Benson and I went to Memorial Park. After I finished my “run” (imagine a drunk woman quickly staggering from her seat at the bar to the bathroom), I fumbled around on the pull-up bars while I waited on Benson to finish his “run” (imagine the Olympics).

“You have a strong upper body,” said a voice. The voice belonged to this dude who’d been doing headstands on park benches for the past several minutes. He had a friend with him who did headstands, too. Memorial Park is full of odd birds, and I’m not even kidding, once I saw a group of ladies doing yoga with their dogs. Like dogs in their laps, sitar music playing, and stretching their dogs paws while this one lady led them all.

So anyway, as I’m hanging there, I said, “Well, I am stronger up top than bottom, but I’m not like, strong. Just stronger up top compared to my legs, which aren’t strong.”

“Can we try something?” said the man, whom I later found is named Zulu and I’m not making that up either.

I glanced around the park. It was filled with runners and walkers and the regular guys who show up to drink beer on their tailgate each Saturday morning. It didn’t seem like the type of place Zulu could easily abduct me. “Sure,” I said.

Zulu started looking around.

“I guess I should have asked what we’re going to try before I agreed,” I cheerfully/nervously added.

“I want you to put your hands like this to see if I can lift you,” he said, putting his arms out like a T. His friend nodded.

Zulu 1

I’m cool. I can go with this. “Okay,” I said, nodding to both of them. “Like, in the grass?” I asked.

Zulu nodded. We walked to the grass.

And then Zulu laid down on his back.

I didn’t know he’d be laying on his back. I thought he’d pick me up like a T. Like cheerleaders.

“Um, do y’all want to, like, demonstrate what you want to do?” I asked. I’d already committed. If I backed out now, well, I don’t know what, but I felt weird going through with whatever was going to happen AND I felt weird about backing out.

They demonstrated, but apparently his friend didn’t do it right because Zulu added, “Put your hands out to the sides once you are up.”

Zulu 2

Oh my gosh.

His partner hopped off, waving his hands toward the sprawled Zulu.

I knew Benson would be running up any second.

I took Zulu’s hands in mine and waited while he positioned his tennis shoes directly against my ovaries. “Um, if a small bald man runs up, it’s my husband,” I offered meekly, searching for Benson.

Does this count as cheating? Am I having an affair?

Then Zulu lifted me. Once up, he coached me into letting go of his hands and holding the flying pose, balancing my body atop his shoes.

“That’s it!” the friend cheered.

There was nowhere to look but directly into Zulu’s eyes.

“This is great!” he exclaimed.

“Okay,” I said, still atop the stranger. “What do we do now?”

“We hold it,” he said solemnly.

And there we were, holding it.

Zulu 3

And there was Benson, finished with his sprint and coming toward us, waving and smiling because he’s the kindest human on earth.

Zulu 4

“Hi hon!” I yelled, falling off of Zulu.

Benson smiled and shook hands with the men. “What are y’all doing?” he asked all friendly.

“Oh, we were just doing this thing where he held me up,” I kind of mumbled, giving him an I really don’t know how this happened look.

Then Benson started chatting with the acrobats, because Benson is the friendliest man alive. They talked about nutrition (Zulu’s a raw vegan), workouts, yoga (Zulu goes, “I can tell you do a lot of yoga” to me, and I was like, “Nope.”)

Then we all smiled and said our goodbyes.

Once in the car, I asked Benson if everything was okay. I was worried our marriage was now on the rocks. Benson laughed. “NO! That was HILARIOUS!”

So for the record, our marriage is still on solid ground, I have a strong upper body, and I’m going to get more information before agreeing the next time a stranger asks if we can “try something.”

(PS. I don’t do yoga because I’m too immature –  the last time I tried it I laughed so hard doing some move where we had to spread our legs like women giving birth that I cried. Like, real tears. Anywho, though this isn’t a sponsored post (because this is mostly a blog about my cat and nobody wants to sponsor Harold), some of you have asked where I go to the gym. It’s here.)

Categories: Lifestyle, Matrimony

4 replies

  1. OMG! We’ve got to revisit the boundaries talk girl… 😉 That is hilarious!

  2. Yeah, what Annie said. However, this was very good, vintage Christine: funny, spontaneous, unpredictabe. At least you didn’t eat lunch wiith him. 😉

  3. I particularly enjoyed the cartoons. Thank you for sharing!

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