Monday, September 3, 2012

"I'd Put Money On That": Rolfing and Zucchini Races

I am in Boulder, CO. I have been out here for a few days. Tonight is the last gig here then I head south with my parents.

Today's gig is going to be a cool one. I'd put money on it.

It's not always easy to make that assessment in advance but with this one I can. I would put money on it being great.

We are playing at the Boulder Creek Hometown Festival.

This is our third time here so we know what to expect. And what we expect is a great responsive crowd, a well organized festival and fun. I'd put money on it.

The cool thing about the Boulder Creek Hometown Festival is that it is a family oriented festival and they have all sorts of fun activities to do during the day.

They have Zucchini Races (kids pick a zucchini from a huge mountain of zuchinis, decorate them with eyes and paint and all sorts of sparkles and other accessories, then they mount wheels to their zucchini and they race them down a big inclined race track).

There are lots of vendors advertising their products or services and offering free samples.

I like free samples.

I got some cool local Colorado honey, a couple different energy drink shots, I drank some locally brewed Vanilla Root Beer (which came in a bad ass stainless steel souvenir mug), and I got Rolfed.

Don't worry. Rolfing is not as nasty as it sounds. I had never heard of Rolfing but the people by the Rolfing tent seemed very pleasant plus from their advertisement (before and after pics) I could tell Rolfing was somehow involved with spinal alignment.

Playing guitar for 20 plus years has left me in constant need of spinal and back muscle attention so I was intrigued.

By the name alone, Rolfing sounded weird enough to try. I walked up and handed them $10 for 10 minutes.

I was welcomed by a young Asian guy named Ryu. He asked where most of my problems were. I started to say ," you're gonna massage my brain?" but figured my humor may be misconstrued as an insult so I just said, "between my shoulder blades".

Ryu told me to lay on my back. He slid his hand under my shoulder , gently and gingerly pressed his fingers against my back and lightly pulled. I felt like I was getting a massage from the weakest person alive.

I thought that maybe he was warming up and maybe he was kidding but surely this wasn't Rolfing. If it was it was a laughable process.

I know from experience that my chronic condition is only slightly helped by intense extremely hard massages. My upper back is just basically one knot after another. And Ryu was pressing into my back with all the force of a 105 year old arthritic grandma. This was doing nothing. I'd put money on it.

Once I realized that Rolfing was apparently a new agey, "align your humours", witchcraftery silliness I decided to simply enjoy laying on a table for ten minutes.

Ryu seemed like a very nice guy so I figured I would try to entertain us both by starting a conversation.

I said, "I've never heard of Rolfing before"

He said , "In a massage, the therapist presses hard into the muscles to force the muscles to release tension. That's not what I'm doing with Rolfing.."

I thought , "Oh. Ya don't say. Maybe THAT's the problem. Hahaha "

Ryu continued," what I am doing is holding presurre against the connective tissue until it releases the tension. Connective tissue covers all the muscles and organs. When someone works hunched over a computer all day for example , the connective tissue can kinda get stuck or frozen in that shape and cause issues with muscles, nerves and eventually skeleton. This causes further issues and then starts a downward spiral."

I said , "I see."

But I thought, "That does make sense but the ridiculously weak pressure you are putting on me wouldn't release any tension from any thing"

I spent the next 8-9 minutes idly talking to Ryu and basically waiting for the Rolfing to be over.

At the end, Ryu said ," ok. Sit up."

Once I did I realized that my back felt looser and more relaxed and limber than it has in years and years.

I was in complete shock.

How was that possible?
It didn't feel like he did anything. Obviously he did. My back felt like a million bucks. I had a spring in my step that wasn't there prior to Rolfing.

I thanked him and walked away smiling. I walked away smiling partially because I felt so good but partially because once again life showed me I was comically mistaken. It showed me that my brain sometimes gets in the way.

(Note:Let me say that I'm not the new poster boy for Rolfing. I'm not even suggesting you go out and try it. But I'll try it again due to how much it helped me today.
My point isn't that Rolfing is amazing. My point is how my prejudices made me drastically mistake my situation).

I guess the lesson I will take away from my Rolfing experience is ......I should be more careful with my prejudices lest I become known for my great judgement as much as Floyd Mayweather is.

Unlike Mayweather, so far when I have been saying "I'd put money on that" it has been figuratively.

So as I approach tonight's gig, I HOPE that it will be phenomenal and a ton of fun but I'll keep my "I'd put money on it" in quotation marks.

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