Saturday, August 15, 2009

A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do (At a Farmer's Market) Again

Sometimes, when you're spending your days shuffling around your neighbourhood and trying to navigate your gimpy leg around the used condoms, needles and dog-shit obstacle course that is downtown Vancouver, it's hard to feel like you're making any progress. You begin to think, "Will I always have to shut the car door by kicking my good leg at it until I finally hook my heel on the handle and pull it in? Will I ever be able to wipe that satisfied smirk off the face of Grandpa McGramperson with his speedy new knee?" But today, I can provide you with photographic evidence that I am, in fact, making progress.

When you first have a hip replacement, the recovery exercises are something along the lines of "squeeze your knees. No, your KNEES. No, contract the muscle...The muscle on your KNEES." Then, you graduate to various pelvic thrusts and leg lifts and all the old guys in physio become your best friend. Finally, however, they pull out the toys. I know that I am cooking with gas now because I have graduated to doing mildly embarrassing things with oversized exercise balls.

I call this pose the Reverse-Sisyphus (I'm pulling out the allusions to Greek myths today to compensate for the 8.3 million times I've talked about my ass since this blog has started). I really do feel like Sisyphus, except instead of a hill, it's a wall and instead of a rock, it's a shockingly orange exercise ball, and instead of rolling it up a hill, I'm pushing it with my ass, and instead of eternity, it's just one set of 15 three times a day. (This metaphor is not perfect). And, look. You can see my little calf muscle trying to hold up the weight of my anti-ass...look at the poor little guy working so hard, giving it the old college try. You can almost hear it humming "Eye of the Tiger." Verdict: progress.

Since having the hip replacement, I've been complaining about not feeling sexy. Want to know one thing you should not do when you're feeling a little deficient in the "put my rocking body on the cover of Cosmo magazine because I am the official poster-child for sex appeal" department? Weigh yourself at a Farmer's Market. Remember this. Farmer's Markets are for buying carrots, mercilessly judging the handiwork of the local craftspeople and trying to determine whether the clown making balloon animals is a tranny. Not for weighing. But scales are kind of like meth to me (not even once!), to the point that I can't keep them in the house, so I couldn't resist. Worse, it was one of the fancy scales that supposedly tells you your body fat composition, though not so fancy that it measures this by any objective standard (it asks you to input your activity level, then makes a ballpark estimate). The good news: I'm the lowest weight I've been since I was, like, 15. The bad news: I am apparently 35% body fat, which puts me into the "significantly overweight" department. No wonder I float so well. This caused me to make a big fuss loudly protesting to anyone within earshot that I'm a size 6, dammit, and I'm six foot two and more than one person has referred to me as "gaunt" in the past few weeks and one of those was a medical professional, so that scale better stop taking lessons from "Make Me a Supermodel" and eat a cupcake.

But worry not. Today I am again rocking the sexy. Today, I finally grabber-ed my way into my skinny jeans. And not just my normal skinny jeans. I fit into ultra-skinny ones, the ones I used to have to do a special "skinny jeans dance"to put on, wiggling my hips and flinging myself around like a dying salmon on my bed, cursing myself for having such puffy knees. Thank you post-surgical atrophy! I guess a couple months of partial paralysis has some positive side-effects. Is the fact that I view the fact that I can now pass as a hipster as the ultimate sign of medical progress mind-blowingly vain? Yes. Does it give me the motivation to keep thrusting my ass into an exercise ball for what seems like forever? Abso-f*cking-lutely. Now if only the rashes would go away.

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