Tuesday, April 06, 2010

More Awkward Moments

I've mentioned the problem of naked old men roaming the gym locker rooms without a care in the world, flapping in the breeze and allowing themselves to air dry after a shower. It appears this was only the start of a much larger issue and evidently their hippy-esque, carefree way of exposing themselves is really more of an epidemic, spreading with a tenacity akin to kudzu.

I had thought the naked lunges to be bad - and don't get me wrong... they are - but I assumed it couldn't possibly get any worse. It can.

We were all the way upstairs on the 3rd floor, so in theory we should have been safe, what with the locker room being both all the way across the building and two floors down. But this snake in the grass was waiting for us and struck when least expected.

At some point I noticed this older gentleman because every time I looked up he was right next to me at another machine. He was exercising with great fervor and I will hand it to him that he was in excellent shape for his age, and also ridiculously flexible, both as an older fellow and as a human being in general. Perhaps he was making a statement with his close proximity and vigorous exercise. He's may be a century older than me but he was making me look like an invalid by comparison. Whatever the reason for his constant presence, he was easily ignored, so I didn't really pay him much mind initially, but it shortly because impossible to ignore him. Believe me, I tried.

I began to take note that after each short set he would do on any given machine, he would walk over to the leg press and stick his foot on top of the section that houses the weights, which basically means he had to stick he leg straight up in the air, which appeared to be no hurdle for him. The problem with this stretching was two-fold.
  1. He was wearing shorts. Now, even regular shorts will ride up a bit when you go too far out of the normal walking range of motion. The shorts this man had on were anything but normal and already showed too much leg even when just standing normally.
  2. He was facing us often times when he did this stretch.
So what do I see when I look up but some random old guy's cash and prizes staring me in the face. Augh. I thought I must still be in the locker room for a second. How else could this possibly happen?

I didn't know if any of my friends who were with me noticed, but I didn't want to call attention to it lest I draw its dark gaze down upon me, like naming Voldemort in Harry Potter... not that I have any idea who that is. But apparently someone noticed, because after a while I hear one of them say "I'm tired of looking up and seeing that old guy's naughty bits." Though, I think they said it a little more vulgarly but I can't be sure as my mind tried to wipe that whole day from my memory as some sort of defense mechanism for my sanity.

After a while, that guy vacated the area and we were able to use the leg press for which we had so patiently waited. On my last turn, I looked over and noticed another guy waiting on me to finish. He was a giant who looked to be around 6'7" and his biceps were as big as my torso. He also looked angry, but was pretty polite and told me to take my time. I let him know when I was done as he was looking elsewhere at the time and I moved over to another machine. It was around this time that I (as well as my friends) noticed the free-spirited elder gentleman returning. And he was headed right towards the leg press, which the Giant now occupied.
I didn't really think anything of it at first, because of course the old guy wasn't going to do his crazy stretching on the machine that someone was using, especially not the current fellow.

Never have I been so wrong. And I've been pretty wrong in my day.

Old boy didn't even hesitate when he shot his uncomfortably muscled leg straight up and let it come to rest on top of the machine, facing the Giant, shorts falling open to display himself for the world. Quite frankly I expected the big guy to just punch him at which point the old bloke would have exploded into a fine mist. Instead he looked right over at me, right in my eyes where I saw a plea for help, and deep, deep sadness. At which point my friends and I all exploded in laughter, though our joy was mixed with sympathy. Giant kept eye contact as if afraid to look away and was just shaking his head non-stop. Not really what I expected from such a scary looking guy. But he may have been in shock.
When Giant was done, he made his way over to us and we all had a laugh and talked about what had happened, like survivors of some great tragedy. We would all be forever changed after that day.

Personally, I'd have steered clear of Giant. Turns out he's actually a pretty stand-up guy but he sure looks scary as hell. That old guy really has some balls on him. And unfortunately I am qualified to make that statement.