Dear Lech: I don’t feel like a gym person, but I want to get in shape. What do I do?
–Very Aggressive Girl In No Arena
Dear VAGINA: Like most people, I sit on my machine/bench/what-have-you, and try not to stare and judge all the others at the gym working out around me. But it’s hard. Just like at a casino, concert, farmer’s market, or used car lot; you just can’t help but stare at the other freaks who also think this is the right time to get into it and come to a place like this. The difference at a gym is that your usually not buying something tangible, you’re just buying into the dream. That you too could maybe one day be on the next pamphlet of who-gives-a-shit gyms’ advertisement. Are you sexy enough (but not too sexy), that people in your appropriate age demographic would see your face and say hell, I could look like that guy!
And so it has been for decades, centuries, and dare I say it millennia, that people went to areas to exercise and get their bodies in shape. It makes sense if you need to for your job, or your health, or your mind. But since the sexual revolution, let’s be honest, it just about getting your optimum sexy out of you. I once was a firm believer that you had to be physically in shape to be considered sexy. That is until I drunkenly watched a Jabba the Hut looking woman dance her ass off on the floor one time and took it upon myself to shin dig with this gal. And when I say Jabba the Hut, I mean I literally think she was a stunt double for the creature.
It was then that I said to myself, perhaps I should let go of this vanity that plagues me, and just let my freak flag and rolls flap and fly. And so I did, twice in my life actually, weigh around 225lbs. Nothing terrible, but as my friends liked to say both times, my body began to resemble the shape of a pear more than a human. Both times I laughed at them and all the work they did to stay in shape and felt I now had so much time to do other things than to worry about working out. Alas, both times I eventually succumbed to not actually accomplishing much of anything else during said “fat down time” except eat more and lay around more. I truly don’t understand how over-weight people have the energy they do. I had more energy smoking a pack of cigarettes after a bad ass hangover than when I was over-weight. For the record, my current and most likely ideal weight hovers around 180lbs. Or so say they doctors.
My wife got me into weight watchers. Not that I actually went to the meetings or anything, I just generally followed the rules and guidelines of quantity and quality. Sort of like an alcoholic living with another alcoholic who goes to AA and then tells them how to do it. Thank God for my wife and her OCD book keeping tally of points that the meals were costing us. But I learned something from this form of losing weight. I still could generally be perceived as “in-shape”, and dare I say sexy, and still not go to the gym. Sure I had no muscle tone, but eh, plenty of models and rockstars have made it famous with the infamous cocaine chic looks for years.
Nowadays I try every once in awhile to go to the gym, and I tell you folks, the times they are a changing. The people there are not what they used to be. They come from all walks. Not just in shape, but in general people who you would never think ever would or would ever want to lift anything with a shred of resistance on it more than gravity itself. Why would these odd creatures who look like combinations of computer nerds, HR staff assistants and pale baristas come to a location where judging eyes are expected. You know why? Because just like Jabba the Hut that one time, they don’t give a shit about your version of sexy. They are bringing sexy back in a whole new way, that we damn well may need to call Webster himself, and change the definition of the word.
I think they come for comradery a bit, or maybe just to get away from the world of computer and phone screens. There really is something primal and honest about sharing the smelly butt sweat of others around you for a moment. Can you feel it? Smelling up the air tonight? Oh Lord.