It was years ago but it still haunts me. I was finally goining to join a gym. Me, the one never chosen for anyone's team. Me, the one that the gym teacher in seventh grade told me that if I stayed away from his class for the year he'd give me an "A". Me, who has NEVER had his endorphins kick in; was joining a gym. So after dealing with the sales person who makes a used car salesman look like Jesus, they sign me up for a "fitness evaluation" with a certified trainer.
I walk in and sign in at the counter - not at all like What's My Line? from the 60's and 70's. Here I am in my Dolphin shorts (remember, we're talking mid-80's here) and a matching t-shirt. Although I'll admit it was a bit Richard Simmons of me, I have to be proud of the fact that it wasn't one of the three times in my life when I had allowed a hairdresser to talk me into what ended up being a very ill-advised perm on my head. But that's a blog for another day.
I'm at the counter and here he comes, Dutch, Butch or something "utch" lurching toward me. He was to be my certified trainer. His appearance was so typical it seemed like a put on. He was the ex high school football player with arms as big as my thighs and a gut to match. He had reached his life's goal by being able to be around clinking weights and the smell of Mennen Speed Stick every day for the rest of his life. I could read the thoughts that were running around in that Neanderthal head of his, "What? A fag? How did I get stuck with a fag? He'll be checking me out all the time. Shit, a fag!" And yet the words that came grunting out of his mouth were only, "go there" and he pointed to the line of stationary bikes.
So I moved toward the stationary bikes where he told me to pedal until he came back. As fast as he could, walking sideways to make sure I wouldn't check out his ass, he disappeared among the Nautilus equipment. Now would be the time to tell you that I am a COMPLETE rule follower. This is no doubt linked to my need to please everyone so that I might become popular some day. Still waiting for that day to arrive. So I'm pedaling for five minutes, then ten, suddenly it's been forty-five minutes , finally at an hour and five minutes I'm done. I get off the bike and walking like I just got off a six day trail ride, I manage to get to the counter.
Behind the counter is a blonde girl whose hair is almost as real as her breasts. I ask for "utch" and she replies, "He totally went to lunch, like did he know he was like training you today?" Leaning on the counter for support I say, "He put me on the bike an hour ago, I'm sure he knew he was training me." Bimbo, "Wow, do you want me to get you another trainer?" Me, "Look at my legs, they're like over cooked spaghetti! I don't want another trainer you stupid fuck, I'm out of here!" And as I limped out of sight I heard her exclaim, "Like there's someone whose endorphins haven't kicked in!"
I never went back to that gym again. They threatened to sue me over non-payment and we eventually settled for an undisclosed amount but let me just say that hour on that bike cost me more than my dignity, it cost around $500!
But that was twenty years ago when there used to be a show, now it's a disco but not for Lola or me and now I'm back, not at the same gym or even in the same city but I've joined the rest of the rats on the treadmill who will never get to eat cheese again (unless they're on Atkins). And to fully Mederma my previous emotional scars I begin with a trainer on Monday so stay tuned, as if you've been reading my blogs you know that NOTHING is ever simple or normal in my life - I'm sure there will be lots to tell.
And as my heart rate rises on the treadmill so does my temper when I see all those people prepare to get on the scale. Leave the damned shoes on - it isn't as if they're the ones that are in the back of your closet from that one time you got wild in college and dressed like Frankenfurter at Rocky Horror. I mean, just how heavy could those Pumas be? Don't get me started!