Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Happy Endings Not Included

We go to a Couples Massage Class!

The purpose is, of course, for the DNB to learn how to give me massages.

"There will be no nistics involved," I tell him, preemptively.

"Darn, I was going to ask that." He's so predictable.

We're to dress comfortably and bring a pillow. I wait downstairs as the DNB primps. He finally appears, pillow in hand and medical school t-shirt on.

I stare at the shirt. "You realize this is being sponsored by a chiropractor's office, right?"

He looks down. "Oh, huh. That's going to be awesome."

I'll admit it, when I think of chiropractors, I think of that episode of "Seinfeld" where Elaine is dating a podiatrist. Jerry wants her to ask him a question about fungus, and she gets embarrassed and the guy is like, "I'm used to it. I'm a doctor." And Elaine replies, "Well . . . podiatrist."

The class is full of other idealistic young women and their half-hearted men. A husband and wife team are teaching, and we begin with a very in-depth lecture about things like what trigger points are made of and why chiropractors are awesome. I avoid looking at the DNB and his "I went to medical school and you didn't" shirt.

We sit on our mats and begin practicing on each other, trying to find trigger points and applying pressure to them to relieve stress in other areas. "I've got a trigger point right here," the DNB whispers to me. I roll my eyes and jam my thumb into the base of his skull.

I clearly still have issues trusting myself to the DNB's doctorish skills, because I jump away when he holds my head and tries to feel for trigger points in my neck.

"Oh my god, I swear you're trying to break my neck," I say accusingly.

"Baby, I wouldn't break your neck here," he replies jovially.

We learn quickly that I am vocal about what's working and what isn't, while the DNB just sits there wincing quietly until I ask him. "Yeah, no, that's pretty much doing nothing good," he finally admits. "In fact, I think the whole right side of my body just went numb." It's such a ridiculous parallel to our lives.

"Now we're going to work on a technique called 'pulling'," the chiropractor husband announces. "Gather 'round, so I can show you how it works." He pulls on someone's arm. "So basically, you're just pulling."


We go back to our mats to try our new technique. I lay down, and the DNB yanks on my arm.
"Too much pressure!" I screech.

We switch places, and the DNB holds his finger out to me. "Here, try pulling this."

The chiropractors both laugh. Fart jokes: the universal equalizer. They probably think the DNB got his t-shirt at Goodwill.

By the end of the class, we've learned quite a bit and definitely feel more relaxed than when we arrived. I approach the chiropractor husband to ask how often I can use trigger point pressure to try to relieve my HFH.

"Well, the general rule in chiropractic is to stop when you start to bruise," he replies.

As it happens, not bruising myself is also one of my general rules in life. I thank him for the class.

"Wow, I guess I could have brought a pillow with less drool stains," the DNB comments as we make our way home.

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