Monday, February 19, 2007

What a Welcome at the Oakland Y

“You have such a Beautiful Stroke.”
“Thanks, it’s such a Beautiful Pool.”
“That it is. That it is….”
PP dives back under the water as Compliment Woman goes back to her water jogging, rocking gently to the vibes in her oversized headphones wrapped around her dyed Blonde African American Braids.

Finally, PP has taken the plunge and joined the Y. It feels good, even with the over-chlorination and lane-sharing confusion. Cute young Dyke in the Hot tub greets PP with a lovely smile and a “Nice Suit!” PP has her ear plugs in so can’t hear the rest of what she says, but with that smile it musta been nice.

And then Compliment Woman.

Everyone must know that PP is not longer just checkin out the joint, but is really a Member now. There’s a different, friendlier welcome in the air today. And all those compliments.

Well, any Swimming Kitty would be thrilled, especially when even the cute Vietnamese woman who signed PP up complimented her on her smile after takin her membership picture.

What a welcome!

But then.
Oh dear. PP is happily swimming her Beautiful Stroke down the middle lane when she spies wiry old guy with lots of hairy limbs and a crazed look in his eye wandering up and down the deck scoping out the lanes. Don’t ask how PP knows he's crazed since the chlorine makes it difficult to see, but she does. He’s got that crazy lumber. You know the one?

Swimming praying swimming praying. PP hopes hopes hopes that he doesn’t choose her lane.

Of course he does.
Damn!
Why do the crazy ones always choose her?
Must be that beautiful stroke. It’s so enticing.
PP better work on a less inviting splash for next time.

So.
Crazy Lumberer is also a Crazy Crooked Take Over the Entire Lane Oblivious Swimmer. Yup. The kind that starts out on his back and flaps around with both arms flailing over his head in the most crooked chaotic fashion imaginable.

PP tries, at first, to swim around him. It’s a close call the first time she passes. The next time, he does knock into her but he’s so spastic she can barely feel it.
Still. PP doesn’t want him braining her while she’s coming up for air.
Should she move?
PP doesn’t want to appear too rude on her first day. After all, maybe he’s a regular and she’ll run into him again (figuratively speaking, she hopes!). Well, hell, everyone in the pool is a member so she’ll definitely run into him again.

Damn.
Did she make a mistake? Is she gonna be plagued with Chaotic Spastic Lumberers during her YMCA tenor?

PP stops and watches him floating kinda in the middle of the lane. Once in awhile, he brings both arms over his head and splashes down, taking up the entire lane.
There’s no fucking way PP can get around him.

Glancing at Real Swimmer Woman in the lane next to her, savvy in her navy blue Speedo two-piece, red Zoomer fins, PP thinks, she’d be so much better.
“Mind if I share your lane?”RSW barely gives PP a glance as she studies the clock.
“I can’t really get around him,” PP nods toward CSL.
RSW nods in easy recognition, smiling sympathetically now. “Yeah. Sure. I’m almost finished.”
“Thanks”

And off PP goes, happily zooming past CSL who continues to spaz down the middle of the lane now next to her, oblivious to her abandonment of his lane. Hell, it was HIS lane from the get go!

And so it goes-- PP’s first day at the Y as a member.
Mixed reviews except for all the compliments.

Those are never mixed.

Grinning, PP finishes her last lap just as Enormous White Water Buffalo Guy on Crutches limps toward her lane. Grins down at her. “Mind if I share your lane?”
Relieved, PP tosses her kickboard on the deck. “I’m getttin out. It’s all yours.”
”Good Timing,” WBGonC nods.

Yup, you can say that again, PP thinks as she hops out of the pool and heads for the Hot Tub where she thankfully sinks into smack in the middle of Vibrant African American Community Talk. "YOU Gotta let those youngsters know. The doors were opened for them. But now they're closing. Those doors they will be closing if you don't up and take advantage of them. I hear you girlfriend. I hear you......"

And with a tired blissful grin, PP settles down to "hear" all about it.

1 comment:

Gilda Bronze said...

Beagle Boy is so excited about your Y membership! Your swimming buddies sound like I would like to sit on their lap too! Mom posted a new trip on my blog, and you should come with, and we'll have a doggone good time...