"The mark of an immature man is that he would die knobly for a cause. The mark of a mature man is that he would live humbly for one" - Catcher in the Rye -WARNING WRITER SPELLING CHALLENGED! But Sometimes you have to say "what the fuck!"

Friday, September 24, 2004

Hans and Frans…. Pump Me the Fuck UP!

Reformation of the Tom Waits Drunk
Part of the battle with depression definitely lies in exercise and a healthy lifestyle. As much as I enjoy being the tragic Tom Waits drunk, creatively composing while chain smoking, I knew I needed change in order to heal. So, I quit drinking home alone, and I started exercising again.

Flying Tampons and Dodge Ball
Exercise and I have a checkered past and strange relationship. I loathed PE class growing up, see I was anorexic-like skinny teen, narrow as an ironing board, and hence never really saw the point of fitness. This was also the day of dodge ball and open gym torment, so I further hated every minute. Being forced to strip nekkid in the girl’s locker room while the Butch PE teacher watched further scarred me emotionally. There is nothing worse to do to a puberty-ridden teenager. Images of the tampon scene in the movie Carrie still haunt me. Locker rooms and gyms have never become completely comfortable places.

A Walk in the Park
For the last six months or so I have had a walking partner. We were doing great last spring, walking 2 miles daily. The problem is, we both suffer from depression. This can be a good thing, as we support and motivate each other, but on the flip side, we can easily blow it off when depressed. Recently, we decided to stop making excuses and start walking again. Our venue of choice is this beautiful park on the water. The park has a view of mountains on one side, and Mt Rainer on the other. It’s breathtaking. You can often spot eagles flying by hunting for prey. Yesterday was particularly gorgeous; all the fall colors illuminating the foliage. I think I saw every color of the rainbow. However, living in the Pacific Northwest, the weather is not always conducive for walking. Soon it will get dark early, and the weather will turn nasty. This means we must find another place to exercise….the gym.

Its fun to stay at the YMCA!
I belonged to our local YMCA for a stint. The gym weirds me out for various reasons. First of all, I feel out of place due to my clothing. I don’t have the money to buy special work out clothes, so I wear what I have. This includes an assortment of old rock concert, marijuana festival and Star Wars t-shirts, baggy sweat pants and an old skewl pair of Vans. My attire causes me to stand out from the other fashion statements; girls with tight spandex outfits, brand spankin new shoes, and matching headbands. The workout uniforms donned by most annoy the hell out of me. Especially considering I cant afford to dress that way, and even if I could, would probably chose to look weird anyway.

Motley Crew of Characters
The cast of characters you run into at the gym also amuse and sometimes annoy me. First you have the Barbie doll chicks, dressed to the nines, giggling and showing off their figures in tight and revealing clothes. You never want to work out on a machine next to them; one because you pale in comparison, and two, they typically wear too much perfume. Then there are the obese women, who also for some reason wear tight and revealing clothes. They are typically dripping with sweat, and either ride the bicycle for hours or do pelvic thrust type floor exercises. Like a train wreck you don’t want to see, its hard not to notice their sexual sounding grunts and obvious torturous state. You don’t want to exercise near them either, for fear of flying sweat. Then there are the guys…. Like the sweaty, hairy and balding work out freak. He is ALWAYS at the gym. Usually he wears tight spandex shorts, a back brace, and a wife beater. This guy hangs out in the weights section and grunts and moans like a dying horse. When he does move to the machines, he leaves them dripping in sweat, and doesn’t bother to whipe them off. YUCK! Then, at least in my small town, there is always a guy from high school, who looks great and fit, and keeps telling you “keep it up, it will pay off”. Gee, is this some sort of a hint?

Put Some Clothes on PLEASE?!?!?!?
Still not over my junior high neurosis of locker rooms, I always try to avoid them. Why is it that some women love to get all natural and naked there? It’s never the attractive ones either. No matter what, there is always a really hairy and heavyset woman in the open shower. She stands in there for hours, as if enjoying putting on a show. One time, I was using the bathroom in the locker rooms and I ran into a former employer. She is an older woman, and respectable member of the community. I stopped to say hi, and she immediately engaged me in a long and drawn out conversation. To my dismay, she was also changing into her swimsuit. I tried to end the conversation and quickly leave, but she kept me hostage and continued talking until she was stripped naked and into her suit. I was mortified. There are just some people you don’t want to see nude. Now, every time I see her, I get this horrible mental image. I still haven’t fully recovered.

Back in Black Baby!
Despite my reservations, I’m going back to the gym. I know once I get the hang of it I will feel comfortable. It’s just getting back in the habit. Working out in public is hard, and something I would rather do at home. The problem is, when I’m home its hard to get off my ass and exercise. Ah well, wish me luck.

One sweet reward is that I now fit into pants I haven’t been able to wear for a year. YIPEEE!

Happy Friday All!


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