My eye was attracted to a front-page story in today's New York Times, under the heading "Santa Monica Journal" and titled "Where the Traffic Median Is a No-Pilates Zone."
It seems that the overindulged California coastal community is enforcing an obscure ordinance against people using the median strip for an open-air gym, which has been going on for years.
Only walking or jogging is permitted on the median strip; no stretching or other exercising is permitted - this after residents' complaints that exercisers had become too loud and intrusive.
Good thing too. Spandex can be an affront to public morals and too many people showing off their bodies is potentially a traffic safety hazard. I wish we had these problems.
Oddly, the story never once mentioned Pilates except in the headline - although it can be assumed that Pilates was popular on the median too, as it's impossible to go anywhere in America without seeing Pilates being performed.
(As I have observed before, it is a wonder than an exercise regimen named after Pontius Pilates ever became popular what with all the evangelicals in this country.)
Still, each to his own. Personally, I don't want to become too flexible; it might start creeping into my thinking.
However, my guess is that the Santa Monica authorities are engaged in a doomed crusade. Pilates and yoga have people's heads where their butts used to be.
Soon Yoga Bear will appear on the median with a pic-a-nic basket, saying: "A big sun salutation to you, Boo Boo!"