I have a bit of a head cold, so I wasn’t in the mood for anything super exertiony this morning. So I worked my core: abs, obliques and lower back. Lower-back exercises are pretty much limited to hyperextensions, where you balance the front of your hips on a little ledge and raise and lower your torso with a weight hugged to your chest. Someone from a smarter sexual orientation might think ahead and realize that repeatedly swinging your head above and below your heart when it’s full of snot would be perhaps a really stupid thing to do, but some of us gay types place tight little waists (or at least the pursuit of tight little waists) over sinus comfort on any hierarchy of importance.
I have no idea why I just gave you a belabored explanation of hyperextensions, but meandering off topic seems to be a hobby of mine. In any case, I was at the hyperextension bench this morning when a woman came up to me and started talking to me as though she knew me. And I had no clue who she was—most likely because she had on a baseball cap and no makeup and it was morning and I was bleary-eyed and snot-headed and I’d just done 20 hyperextensions.
So as we were chatting, some woman with her back to us on a stair-stepper at least 10 yards away started yelling something shush-y over her shoulder in the general direction of us and/or the entire western half of the gym. The woman was one of those working-out-is-an-event types: coordinated outfits instead of workout gear, an obvious application of hair and skin products even for a pre-dawn workout, and stacks of fashion magazines as standard-issue cardio tools. She had a bank of TVs in her face, a thump-thump speaker right over her head, a whirring stair-stepper under her feet and a Cosmo spread out on the reading stand in front of her. And yet our very top-line conversation (remember, I had no clue who my conversation companion was, so it’s not like the stuff we were talking about was interesting enough even to distract Dubya from his animal flash cards) was distracting her to the point of shushing faraway strangers speaking at a volume not unlike any other she’d hear in a loud gym.
On the other hand, my conversation companion was so engrossed in our non-conversation that she didn’t even notice the shush fascist. And, apparently happy with the interaction we’d just shared, she eventually said her good-byes and sauntered off to the rest of her workout. I tried to shoot the shush fascist a look that said both holy shit are you in need of a good slapping and your shoes SO don’t match your headband, but she had gotten herself caught up in one of those 20 Insignificant-To-The-Rest-Of-The-World Things He Does That Are Nevertheless Grounds For Divorce Cosmo articles, so she didn’t notice.
And I made a point to grunt through my last 10 hyperextensions. Which is surprisingly hard to do with a head full of snot.