Saturday, January 9, 2010

its time for . . . Tales From the Treadmill!

Picture it -- Golds Gym Somerville, 2010.

I was strolling along on the treadmill like I normally do, after successfully convincing myself that my "walk-jog" routine will start Monday. Everyone knows, diets / exercise plans / weeks start on Mondays. Duh.

I was listening to The Hater podcast and trying not to laugh out loud like a creepy freak, as I'm sometimes apt to do. This week Amelie Gillette is making fun of Tyra Banks, Oprah, the Jonas Brothers and Domino's Pizza. I effing love her.

Suddenly, I'm aware of someone standing on the vacant treadmill to my right, staring and gesturing at me. My first thought was that this is "Ghostbusters dude". What -- I've never told you about Ghostbusters dude? Allow me to indulge in a brief tangent here:

There's a guy at my gym who is apparently a huge fan of my "Ghostbusters shirt". It's just a black t-shirt with the Ghostbusters logo on the front -- suitable attire for dive bars, the gym, job interviews at the Sav-Mor Liquor Store. Nothing special.

The first time I wore it to the gym, this guy stopped right in front of my elliptical machine and started talking at me. Which was pointless and annoying, because I was listening to the Glee soundtrack at top volume and couldn't hear what the eff he was saying. At first I thought he was a fomer date, come back to awkwardly remind me of some unreturned phone message or something -- but no, this dude merely wanted to tell me how much he liked my Ghostbusters shirt.*

"Ghostbusters, man! I remember that movie! That's so cool! Where'd you get it?"

"Thanks . . . uh . . . Target, I think?"

"That's awesome!"

A few minutes later, he came back with a friend, and proceeded to proudly point out my Ghostbusters shirt to his buddy. His friend, to his credit, looked confused and embarrassed.

"Dude, remember Ghostbusters?"

"What?" said his friend.

"Ghostbusters -- that movie! With that guy . . . that was the logo!"

"Oh yeh . . . I don't know if I ever saw that . . ."

"Whaaaaat?! Are you serious?!"

So they went on. I stopped even pretending to be a part of the conversation and cranked up my ipod once again, and eventually, they wandered away.

So, needless to say, the Ghostbusters shirt was taken out of gym rotation for several weeks. When, at last, the day came when all my other gym tees were in the laundry and I was forced to don the GB tee -- dude was right there in front of my treadmill again!!!

Him: "Heeey!" [gives thumbs up on shirt]

Me: [startled, confused stumbling, followed by embarrassed nod / thumbs up]

Seriously? Does this guy just wander around the gym checkin' out people's outfits? If so, I pity him -- because Golds Gym Somerville is certainly not a fashionista gym. Unless the hot new trend in workout wear is "moving company t-shirts, old sweatpants, and ill-fitting support garments". They had to post a sign at the front desk stating: "As of January 1, 2010, No Jeans Allowed".

I'm no athlete, but even I know you shouldn't wear jeans to the effing gym. Come on, people!

Ok, end tangent.

So back to today's treadmill visitor. It was, thankfully, not Ghostbusters dude. It was a guy wearing an official Golds Gym Somerville shirt, which immediately made me nervous. What did I do? I wasn't wearing jeans . . . did they notice that the last time I was here, I failed to wipe down the treadmill when I was done? What -- its not like I touch the damn thing other than to press the Start / Stop button! Get over it!

But no, Official Gym Employee had not come to scold me. He had come to gently shame me.

Him: "Hi, My name is Ron. I don't think I've seen you at the gym before -- how long have you been a member?"

Me: "Um . . . awhile . . ." [by awhile, I meant 4 years. although clearly, the effects of 4 years of gym membership are not immediately apparent when looking at me in all my gym-clothed glory]

Him: "Oh, ok -- so you're getting back into it for the New Year!"

Me: "Right!"

Him: "Has anyone ever talked to you about doing a free personal training session?"

Me: "Uh . . . no . . ." [but they have approached to me comment on my t-shirts / oogle me]

Him: "Is that something you'd be interested in?"

Me: "Kinda . . . I gotta be up front with you though -- I'm not gonna be able to commit to paying for sessions, because I have no job." [ and I'm pretty sure that once you watch me attempt a sit-up, or a crunch or whatever -- you're probably not gonna wanna train me, either.]

Him: "Totally understandable . . . just see what training's all about . . . blah, blah, blah . . . should I put you down for Monday at 4?"

This is usually the part of any pitch where I break the sales-person's heart with, "Weeellllllll . . . let me think about it . . ." and then run out the door and never return. But today, I thought to myself -- what the hell? I've been coming to this sweaty pit for 4 years, and I still can't touch my freakin' toes. Maybe it is time to switch it up, get some "professional" advice.

Which is exactly what they want you to think.

Damnit. Clearly, the treadmill is my kryptonite. Corner me on one and I'll agree to anything.

Ron obviously saw me as fresh meat. Sauntering along at an easy 3.5 miles per hour, occasionally snickering to myself. Oooooh yeh, he thoughtThere's a girl who's enjoying the gym too much. There's a girl who needs some pain. .

Ron's parting words to me were, "Bring water and a towel, and come prepared to sweat."

I should have told him, "Ok. You bring Band-Aids and a face mask, and be prepared to call 911 at some point."

Instead, I actually said, "Ok, great! Nice to meet you! Can't wait for you to kick my ass!"

The moral of these stories: I need to stop being friendly to people at the gym. Or anywhere. Or just walk around laughing out loud to myself at all times, so they'll stay away.

*Just so we're clear, I am aware that this dude was probably more interested in my "lovely lady ghosties" than my "shirt". I can be clueless . . . but not that clueless.


  1. Tea, I think you need to start writing a song call "Ghostbusters Shirt"!

  2. I think you'll have fun on your training session! And you'll learn how to use a bunch of new equipment. Which means you'll get to switch up your routine more (making the gym more fun...or something. I hate the gym)

  3. Venn, I'm on it -- right after I finish writing T&A's first hit single, "JR".

    Thanks, Liz! I'm figuring it can't be any more embarrassing than middle school gym class, and god knows I could use something to spice up my routine!

  4. haha you crack me up! love the treadmill tales...