Showing posts from June, 2008


“I swear this pool is haunted!” Capt. G shook her head in amazed wonder as PP dunked under the hot tub’s warm bubbles. Damn it was cold! And dark! While PP had been swimming in Capt G’s Haunted Pool, the lights in the deep end had gone off, leaving this end of the pool eerily darkened. It reminded PP of that Graham Green novel, the one where the guy inherits the deserted hotel from his slutty mother in Haiti and when he arrives to claim his inheritance there’s a dead body in the deep end of the drained pool.

PP kept thinking that there was gonna be a dead body in the deep end of Capt G’s pool this night. And with the fog, and the dark and the wind, PP had the shivers for more reasons than just the cold.

She thought she’d seen a Ghost.

Now, PP will be the first to admit that she’s highly susceptible to superstitious apparitions. When she in Santa Cruz, which frankly, she thinks the whole town is haunted, but besides this, she lived in a haunted house there on the hill with her hilariou…

Paddle that Paddle Man

Pandemonium reigns at the YMCA now. It’s summer. Everyone wants to swim. Leaving PP to negotiate increasingly hazardous conditions.

Take today for instance. Sure when she got there, at 2:15 in the afternoon, the pool was relatively calm though a swim lesson was being given in the lane next to hers that was not on the schedule. (She’d asked the beautiful Tibetan Woman for a Summer Pool schedule on their way in, reading it aloud to Dashingly Handsome Boyfriend as they proceeded down the stairs.)

“See…between 2 and 3 p.m there’s supposed to be 7 lanes available. Before that there’s only 5 and after that there’s only 3, so it’s a narrow window of swimming opportunity.”
DHBF nods. He doesn’t really care. Or maybe he does. PP has to be careful what she writes about him. He can be prickly when she makes certain assumptions.

But with swimming it’s all about her, so if she assumes wrongly about him, it doesn’t really matter.

In any case, today, when she finished her wimpy workout upstairs on the…

The Swim Test

A whole week away! PP, naturally, builds her trips around pools, and the first stop is a cool lazy spacey swim at the always-calm Arcata Community Pool.

Here, away from the Bay Area and back in the water, PP finally starts to relax. She loves this pool. So close to her parent’s house in Eureka. Finally! They are living places where SHE can swim. (Even though neither of her parents has swum in years. Though to give her mom a LOT of credit, she did do her languid ‘noodle’ swims in Palm Springs after she hurt her back. Swimming, of course, cured her!) And there, too, in Palm Springs, at the Sun City Gated Community Clubhouse, there’d been a lovely indoor pool for PP to partake of.

But when the folks had moved to Eureka, PP was crestfallen! How could they move away from that perfect warm indoor pool where no one ever even shared a lane with her? Granted, the move to Eureka, might have been better for them weather-wise and more. But the pool?

It had been Heaven for PP!

Fortunately, she’d d…

Wounded Fish Unite!

PP expects such masochistic dedication to swimming from “The Type”—Super Swimmer Woman, but when she thinks about it, she and many of her friends are guilty of it too, just not to the same degree.


So when SSW divulges to PP one night in the sauna, lying flat on her back, unable to move after her workout, how she swims two miles and it takes her over 2 hours (“I’m embarrassed to admit”) and how after the first mile she starts to feel the pinched nerve in her neck and toward the middle of the second mile she feels (or doesn’t feel) numbness in her right arm and PP thinks to herself. Shit. Why the hell do you swim so far? Why not just swim a mile and leave it at that with the minimal pain in your arm and neck, but no numbness from the pinched nerve?

Isn’t this just a bit extreme? What drives her to keep swimming even when she’s in this intense pain? Is it a fear of gaining weight? Or losing her athleticism in her middle age? Or her brain exploding cuz swimming is the only activity th…

In Trouble....

“You know you have to be 18 to be in here.” Mean Munching on Nuts Woman glares at the two abashed teenage girls in the Hot Tub. PP had greeted them 3 minutes earlier as they had stepped gingerly into the bubbling warmth. “You guys been swimming?”
“Yeah,” the Bigger Older One had grinned, her smaller friend staring at PP in wide-eyed wonder. Did they already suspect they were gonna get “In Trouble” for being here?

PP hadn’t even thought about what their ages were as they sunk tentatively into the welcoming warmth. She just wanted to congratulate them on their Pool Time. It hadn’t even remotely occurred to her that the two girls weren’t 18 and therefore were breaking the “Rules.”

But Hell. PP is all about breaking the Rules. At least when it comes to the pool or hot tub.

Yet Mean Munching Nuts Woman was having none of it, glaring at the two culprits as she limped past them, not even entering the hot tub herself, but heading over to the steam room instead, calling over to them in no nonsens…

She's a Type

She is a Type. You know her. Serious, very, serious, Swimmer. Swims two miles twice a week. Concerned. Very Concerned. For hers and everyone else’s welfare. Advice. Lots and lots of Advice. About anti-chlorine suits. (Speedo makes one that says ‘chlorine resistant’ right on the label!) Chlorine stripping shampoos. (Neutrogena and Paul Friedman, while a little more expensive than PP’s Anti Chlorine Brand, are gentler and better for your hair. And PP, suddenly, well maybe not so suddenly, has LONG hair. So. Designer Shampoo for her? Not too likely, but you never know. PP could go against Her Type once it awhile. )

She’s had a “Health Issue”—yes, haven’t we all. This one is mysterious and generic all at the same time. Something to do with the skin? The breasts? The brain?

It doesn’t really matter. It’s an Issue. But it’s been dealt with in a no-nonsense practical sort of way. But it’s still there. Underlying her reality.
And yours. If you happen to chat with her in the locker room. The hot…