Let me get this out of the way, since it just happened. I was watching Oprah in Dubai (I'm in Dubai, not Oprah) and it was the Australian episode where she takes her show down under. At the end of the show, Australian celebs like Keith and Nicole, Olivia, and Russell, walk on stage and sing Peter Allen's, "I Still Call Australia Home"
I've been to cities that never close down,
From New York to Rio and old London town, But no matter how far or how wide I roam, I still call Australia home.
They unfurled a giant Australian flag over the heads of a kabillion member audience and the Qantus Choir was singing back up. I was almost in tears. A sense of pride washed over me and for a moment, I actually felt like an Aussie. I had to have a sit down to remind myself that Australia was not, in fact, my homeland.
I feel better now.
I started teaching Pilates three days after I arrived a little over a week ago, and I've wasted no time in bringing my special brand of humor to the ladies of Dubai.
I believe it was my third Pilates Mat class when I casually called a woman of French persuasion 'Frenchie', when I wanted to get her attention.
For whatever reason, I felt an instant closeness to the clients and I've been letting the sarcasm and brashness fly with reckless abandon. Both of the Pilates studios are all female, which lends itself to a supportive sisterhood kind of vibe. That, and no one cares if their socks match their shorts. I'm speaking of myself of course.
If you permit me, I'd like to illustrate, through the retelling of actual scenes, my innate ability to embarrass myself in Dubai just as I do in Jersey. I like to think that my, 'what's on my lung is on my tongue' attitude, knows no geographical borders.
Pilates Reformer Class
Me: "Let's find our neutral pelvis. This might be politically incorrect but imagine that you're balancing a Martini on your pelvis. Don't spill it." Laughter from the class. In case you don't know, Muslim's don't drink.
I caught my reflection in the mirror (Okay, I actively looked at myself in the mirror) in the middle of instructing the class, paused and said, "Wow, I really need to get a tan." Laughter. A woman in the back row casually said, "It's not about you." It was funny. I replied, "Yes, it is. It's always about me. You guys are just my audience. This is my stage."
Later in the same class, I asked the women if they felt their abdominals during an exercise. Silence. I said, "You guys have to give me feedback. It's like a review. Think of it as reviewing my show." Again, laughter.
ME: "So, do you all have other children?" The Pregos all nodded in the negative. "So this is everyone's first then. That's so exciting! Pregnant pause (Pun intended) I mean if you're into that sort of thing." Laughter.
Holy crap. I'm on fire.
In my head, the equation I live by is this: Laughter = Encouragement = Keep Going. Even if it means that I'm probably going to push my luck and inevitably insert my foot so deep in my throat, it's going to come out my arse.
Until then, I'm performing 18 shows a week!