Nama-Stay Sexy and Don't Get Murdered: A Murderino Yoga Meetup
If you're a true crime lover, like myself, I guarantee you've heard of the podcast My Favorite Murder (MFM). Avid listeners refer to themselves as Murderinos and, through the podcast, have created an amazing community that extends far beyond the comedy/true crime podcast.
I recently joined my local group of MFM fans for a yoga meetup. While I've struggled with yoga in the past, I looked at it more as an opportunity to meet like-minded individuals and raise some money for a great cause.
Hosted by an amazing Murderino and professional yoga instructor, the class was free to attend but she accepted donations to End the Backlog. End the Backlog is an initiative dedicated to identifying and eliminating the nation's backlog of untested rape kits.
We met on a blazing, sunny day at the pagoda in downtown Norfolk. As soon as I parked, I was faced with my usual nervousness when it comes to new situations. My feelings were alleviated when another young woman parked behind me and emerged from her car with a yoga mat. I imagine it'd be odd for someone to point to you and say "my favorite murder meet up?" But, for a Murderino, this is totally normal. I sighed in relief as we walked to the pagoda.
Three other ladies were already there with the instructor and two more trickled in right as we started. The summer sun showed us no mercy as we moved between flows and poses. I can't even count the number of times I stopped to towel off but, thankfully, I was not the only one. It always makes me feel better when I'm not the sole sweat monster in a group.
Everyone in the class looked like regular yogis so I was a little intimated as I struggled to keep my balance and complete some of the poses. I felt increasingly more comfortable thanks to our instructor, Kathryn, who was very positive and encouraging the entire time. All of the ladies were so friendly, making the class much more enjoyable than I anticipated.
Our yoga session lasted an hour before we proceeded to nearby Smartmouth Brewing Co. I hadn't eaten yet that day, so all I could think about was washing down a tasty meal with some local craft beer.
Given my indecisive nature, I ordered a flight of four beers from Smartmouth. I tried their signature IPA, the Game On, as well as X-pert Commander raspberry ale. My favorites, however, were The Princess, their seasonal Oktoberfest beer that featured a subtle caramel sweetness, and the Ice Ice, a porter. I usually don't like the thickness of a porter, but this one was lighter than most I've tried and had a vanilla flavor that's perfect for the upcoming fall season.
We were well connected at Smartmouth as one of the Murderinos is a sales rep for the brewery. Since the food truck was late, she let us know about a great place nearby to get pizza. I was sold. We all decided to walk to The Bakehouse at Chelsea. As we strolled, we discussed some of our favorite true crime books, favorite murderers (once again, not totally normal conversations for most people) and what began our love of true crime.
Tempted by their tantalizing menu and the smell of freshly baked dough, we all ordered a pizza and most of us also ordered an accompanying sweet.
I couldn't resist a snickerdoodle cookie, which turned out to be the best snickerdoodle I've ever had. With a slight crunch on the outside and soft middle, my first bite made me want to shed a tear. I really regret not getting at least eight more to take home and dip in a glass of milk.
The pizzas came straight out of the wood-fired oven and smelled amazing. I ordered the White Pizza, my favorite type of pizza. At first, I was a little thrown off my how much spinach was on the pizza. Like, this isn't a salad. Any doubts about the pizza were washed away as I began to eat. The spinach was drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with cracked black pepper. This was an excellent complement to the rich mozzarella that topped with roasted garlic ricotta spread on the soft pizza dough.
As I mindlessly ate my sensational pizza, I listened to my fellow Murderinos tell their true crime stories. On MFM, it's called a "Hometown Murder." Someone spoke of girl who went to her high school that eventually was part of a murderous couple. Another very casually told us about the time she found a human head (it's never a mannequin) in a dumpster. While I'm sure the innocent bystanders around us were slightly horrified, we were all highly amused and intrigued with each story.
At the end of the day, the small group of us were about to raise over $150 towards End the Backlog. Despite our sweaty start, the day was an amazing chance to hang out with other true crime lovers, raise money for a great cause and eat. I really can't decide what my favorite part was.
Click here if you'd like to donate to End the Backlog.