how yoga is kind of making me want to kill myself

This, dear friends, is my yoga teacher. She's oh, a professional model who doesn't drink and likely eats lettuce for dessert. She's also extremely nice and caring, and her perfect night probably doesn't involve a couple Blue Moons and mozzarella sticks. She also probably didn't wake up last Sunday and yell at her parents for not getting bagels and then, in a huff of frustration, decide to make a bag of popcorn and eat it for breakfast instead.

I've never actually met her. See, back in May, I was offered a free yoga fellowship by Yoga Bear, an organization that gives free yoga classes to former cancer patients.

Since May, I've spent about 15 days in the hospital, and then contracted MRSA and had a tooth removed and oh, kicked a glass door, and oh yeah, nearly broke my foot when I was drunk. It's been an eventful few months, health-wise. Add to this my extreme laziness and you get the sad truth that although I could be going to yoga every night for free, I have yet to attend one class.

I know. It's bad. And now, every week, I get an email that asks how I'm feeling and when I think I can come in.

The guilt is getting to me. Especially after I read what she wrote here. Kind of like reading my life story.

But you know what? I'm going to make a change! I'm starting with the woman in the mirror and I'm asking her to change her ways! MJ and Tara have inspired me and I swear it, right here! In print! Next week or the week after that or in a few months, I am going to walk into that yoga class and the new Kelly will begin.

As long as I can have the occasional chicken finger.


What Not To Do: The Kelly Bergin Saga Continues

I'm back with more advice, people!

I know you've missed it. You've probably made so many bad decisions and been like "this is totally because Kelly hasn't posted one of her famous advice columns lately".

Well, I'm back.

Here goes another round of What Not To Do!

1) Do NOT kick a glass door to get someone's attention during a fight. Massive blood loss and tears will follow. You will then develop an oozing wound that will attract the attention of all who look at your foot, causing many of them to turn away in disgust and one unfortunate subway rider to gag.

2) Do NOT tell coworkers that you hurt aforementioned foot in a "surfing accident". People at the office will begin to ask about your great surfing skills and ask your advice about the sport. Note to all: responding "Well I kind of suck and just stand there" is NOT proper surfing advice.

3) Do NOT walk outside in your boxers and ripped tank top and flag down the Mr. Softee truck. The Mr. Softee truck is not a cab and cannot be treated as one. Onlookers will gawk at you and you will feel ashamed as you devour your ice cream.

4) Do NOT walk into a room of full of law students and mutter (too loudly) that "it looks like the UN up in hizz-ere". You will be taken the wrong way and your "I was drunk and trying to be irreverent and hilarious to gain attention to make people love me!" excuse will not fly.

5) Do NOT give your number to the bouncer at the R Bar on Bowery. His name is Clifford Napoleon and he will call and stalk you until you have to text him that he has the wrong number and "the shorty with blonde hair" is no longer interested.

6) Do NOT Twitter while drunk. Drunk Twitter-ing is a dangerous and lethal sport that can lead to loss of friendship and dignity. Avoid it at all costs, dear friends. At all costs.

7) Do NOT let it spill that you may find Jon Gosselin somewhat attractive, despite his double pierced ears, Bluetooth clip and Ed Hardy shirts (he was cute in high school!). Blank stares and gasps of disbelief will follow and you will return to your computer, embarrassed as you click through a gallery of Jon's pictures from high school (TMZ.com, for all you interested parties).

8) Do NOT attempt to cover up the infection on your face by wearing sunglasses indoors, as your coworker will call you out on your decidedly odd behavior and then everyone will notice Little Mount Versuvius on your face. Your boss will then ask if you got hit in the face or hurt in another surfing accident. And you will turn bright red and stammer and wish you were dead.

My life is a farce.


The Waiting Room (Excerpt)

The things they wore, they faces they carried: these things varied greatly by experience and injury. Sara Fernandez wore her Hannah Montana shirt and blue denim shorts. Her face was tear-stained as she held her clearly broken arm against Miley Cyrus’ face, the fabric wet and crumpled.

Bob was in his work clothes; construction pants from Carhart were ripped to reveal the huge gaping hole in his leg, steadily pouring red. A TV blared but he did not look up. His name was called first, rushed into the ER as his skin paled and his balance wobbled.

Annie knew where she was going (17th floor, general medicine), so she had the necessities. Her big bag, complete with computer and cell phone charger and change of underwear. Books, DVDS, insulin packs. A notebook detailed her latest symptoms; she hadn’t eaten since Tuesday and she could hardly speak. Her words on the page spoke for her, though she knew they’d ask again and again. Her palms were engraved with nail marks; she had screamed silently for days.

Cameron sat at the edge of the waiting room; there was nothing to notice but the look on his face. His eyes squinted together and he was literally doubled over; all you could see was his face and his knees, becoming one.. There was a magazine he did not read. All he really had, all you really need to know was the rupturing appendix and the way his mix of his tears and spit synchronized their descent to the hard linoleum floor.

A shirt soaked with vomit, that’s what Jamie wore. Too many times he had said yes, yes, I’ll have another and now his BAL flew off the charts. Annie and Bob and Cameron and Sara stared, slack-jawed, wide-eyed. Right before he was thrown into triage, he left a reminder of his youth on the floor.

But Brian James, with his haggard clothing and weary face, knew what he was carrying. There was no pain to distract him.  He looked around the ER and memorized the faces. He wrote them down in a reporter’s notebook; long forgotten for another job, another place. He gripped his hand, checked for his shirt pocket for cigarettes and walked outside.


to luke, my nephew (fiction)

To Luke, My Nephew

At five, you said to me,
Holding up a hand to show
That finally! Finally you
Were at an age that took up an entire hand.
And today, you take up two.

Ten years old!
Ten years ago,
I sat in a college bar, my shirt stained with
Wing sauce and whiskey,
And took a call from your mother,
She told me that you had just arrived.
You weighed ten pounds, like the sack of potatoes
That we’d buy and peel and put on the grill—
All those summer nights you visited me,
Nights like the Sunday in June you were born.
You had black hair and blue eyes, right from the start;
I looked at the pictures she emailed, all the way from Brooklyn to San Francisco,
And I gasped,
As the connection dialed up and your face finally came into view:
“What a prince we have! “

Ten years, Luke and what of it?
Ten years and three broken bones
No small feat, considering we watched you like a hawk
Watched you tumble off the steps,
Watched you fall hard in your basketball game
That skinny wrist of yours snapped so easily!
And your foot: that I remember well.
Four years old and you picked up my paper weight globe-
I gave it to you later as a gift-
Dropped it right on your foot.
Boy, the shriek that hatched in your throat!
I heard the scream and came running,
lifted you up,
To the ER—I said, and we pretended we were on an adventure,
Two pirates on a ship to the hospital.
Your eyes, shiny with tears crinkled with a smile
When I looked at you in the rearview mirror and
Said “Arrrr matey, arrrrr you ready for adventure?”

Luke, I hope you know
You are my favorite boy,
My king of Kings County
My clutzy little man,
Growing out of trousers and swim trunks and
Passing me in height,
Shoe size,
Your hands, sudenly bigger than mine.

I love you ,
So please-
Indulge your favorite aunt,
And stay small,
Just another year more.