2006, $2.99, at Goodwill on Brand in Glendale

First Impression: If I shut my eyes, I can play “airplane.”

Second Impression: Whee! Early boarding and no luggage fee! Whee!

Exercise is a wonderful reliever of stress. This DVD is literally called, Yoga for Stress Relief. It is, therefore, astounding how wound-up and anxious I feel every time I try to do this video.

For me, the best way to relieve stress is to get moving. The more strenuous the workout, the better. I can put all my frustrations into the routine, wear myself out, and have a good nights’ sleep (incidentally, also a great stress reliever.)

The yoga sequences in this video don’t rid you of pent-up negative energy, but rather, ask you to preserve your stress, seal it up in Saran Wrap to lock in the freshness, and save it to be dealt with later.

The instructor leads the painfully slow exercises in an abandoned wedding chuppah by the sea. Her voice unnerves me a little bit. It is the sort of voice that would dictate a recipe for hot dish with such polite insistence that you would find yourself making said hot dish out of guilt even if you had sworn off meat, dairy, and carbs.

Fortunately, my two favorite stress relievers, a pair of black cats, leap into the fray and all is not lost. I happen to be doing this video while introducing New Kitten to the House Panther, and they provide a welcome respite from the glacially paced routine.

First, the House Panther deposits himself in the middle of my yoga blanket, showing New Kitten how it’s done:

Then, New Kitten attempts her own version of a Downward Dog:

Then, being a fast learner, she takes up residence on the yoga blanket, providing a welcome distraction:

Come on! Look at her face!

In conclusion, do whatever exercise makes you feel good. Get some pets and enjoy their company. That is all.

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