Saturday, November 22, 2008

Snow Swim????




"Ahhh....It feels so good on your back, doesn't it?"

"Oh, yes!" PP agreed, even though her neck was hurting much more than her back after her frigid swim at the Berkeley Y (Oakland was closed for "Family Float Night"--PP had considered trying to SINK all those families in some diabolical plot outta AMC, but then had decided it might be easier, though perhaps less satisfying, to just swim at the B. Y.)

Now in Utopia of Berkeley, she was finally thawing out and relaxing. And happy that someone was talking to her here at this Utopia even though it was AGAINST the rules! You may or maybe not recall how PP had marveled at a previous Berkeley Y visit how one of the rules listed on the Sauna Door was, "Please refrain from conversation".

Hello?

So when Good On Her Back Woman spoke, it was ,WOW!, a Sauna Rebel.

Well, she wouldn't expect anything less in Berkeley!

"I've been painting all day!" Berkeley Rebel sighed.
"No wonder your back hurts!"
"Yes. And it's an Old House. Had the original paint."
"Mmmm..." PP wasn't sure what the significance of this was, but it sounded harder on your back. That original paint. But why? It took more coats? Or it took more sanding off? Or, it was just inconsequential as far as back pain, and BR was just finally getting around to painting her house after 50 years?

"I try to do a lot of stretching in here. When I'm warm!" BR exclaimed completely off the paint topic. PP did note that this was another rule being broken. She was pretty sure the signage also forbade stretching in the Sauna.




"That's a good idea," PP agreed, trying to stretch her arms over her head without the neck pain. But hey, voila! It was gone--thanks to Utopia. At least for now.

"Yes, I find that I am much more able to stretch in here than out in the cold."
"Yeah, I don't stretch well in the cold. Or swim well in the cold. The pool was COLD tonight."
"Was it? I remember when I was in Munich....or was it Innsbruck....?" BR's voice trailed off wistfully; PP couldn't tell how old she was since it was so dark in the Berkeley Utopia, but maybe this was a memory that was coming out of long ago?

"Anyway, I think it was Munich. No it couldn't have been. We were there in the wrong time of the year. There couldn't have been any snow then..."
"Snow?"
"Yes, it was Innsbruck. And you wouldn't believe it. People would go swimming and then go jump in the snow and then jump back in the pool. And of course the pool felt warm compared to the snow. I had to do it once. Just to say I did it!" she proclaimed proudly, chuckling.




PP shook her head, laughing. "No way would I do it! I hate the Cold, esp. the Snow. I can't imagine combining the pool and the snow, unless I were inside a nice warm glass pool house and you could see the snow from the pool!"
"Yes! That was exactly it! It really was quite something."

PP nodded, even though she knew that BR couldn't see her. Swimming in the snow. Why would anyone do such a thing? Wouldn't the water from your wet swim suit then turn to ice? Or how does snow work anyway?

PP doesn't want to know.

"I should get going before I roll out of here. And believe me, that wouldn't be a Pretty Sight!" BR laughed at herself as she rose, out of the shadows and PP beheld a typical Berkeley Rebel Type: Roly Poly, 60 something, White Woman with long gray hair.

PP wanted to see her roll out to be honest. She'd never witnessed such an exit from Utopia.

But it was probably against the rules.

And it definitely would NOT feel good on your back!

Friday, November 14, 2008

I am Woman She is Woman.....




Resting her forehead on the shower wall, PP lets the warm water beat down on her tired head. After the swim. After the hot tub. After Utopia.

She's finally relaxed.
Until.....

A loud, disgusting, loogie spitting throat clearing snort to her right, at the end of the row of showers, breaks her Relaxation Trance.

Gross.

Why do people spit in the shower? Not only is there signage all over the YMCA shower scene forbidding such phlegmy transgressions, but it's also just goddamn inconsiderate not to mention unsanitary!

She glances in the Spitting Direction to see two women in a heated argument. She can't tell what they're saying. Part of this is cause they're too far away, the other part is that her ears are still plugged up with water and another part is that she's just too tired to try to gather a story. Sometimes it's just so much effort. She just wants to relax and not write, even if the story is right in front of her.

Or to the side of her.

Which this one was.

One of the women, PP knew. A sweet, pale Pear Woman who often chats with PP in the hot tub, but sometimes not, which is cool. She's gesticulating and her face is a Huge Angry Grimace as she glares at the woman who PP assumes in the Spitting Woman.

Spitting Woman she hasn't seen before. A brown, stout, folds on stomach woman, who has her back to PP and is also yelling.





It's a little disconcerting since such outbursts are relatively rare here at the YMCA, but they do happen.

So, PP speculates that Pear Woman is yelling at Spitting Woman for laying the huge blastoff sounding loogie in the shower, which from PP's perspective is reasonable. Though PP wouldn't say anything. Or maybe she might. It would depend on her mood. Though generally she doesn't want to start any confrontations at the Y. Esp with Stout Spitting Women.

And so, a few minutes later, after both women had finished their Yelling Showers, PP was drying off by the steam room when Pear Woman shuffled by, her face still in an angry frown. PP couldn't help herself; she had to find out the story.

"What was That all about earlier?" she asked, knowing that PW would know what she was talking about.
"She is so Rude. She told me. I can Not WASH THERE!" PW lifted one leg and pointed at her Vagina. PP didn't look too closely, but it was quite a dramatic showing.
"Really?" PP wanted the story to continue. "That's odd. Why did she care?"
PW shrugged, still mad. "I dunno. She told me I had to go THERE!" She pointed to the steam room.
This puzzled PP. You were supposed to go wash your vagina in the steam room and not the shower?
Interesting.




"That's weird," PP nodded.
"I know!" PW stamped her little bare foot and placed a pudgy hand on her hip. "I don't know what the problem is. I am Woman. She is Woman. What the Big Deal?"
"I don't know," PP offered unhelpfully. "That's a good point. We are all women here."
PW nodded in angry agreement. "I don't know her. I don't understand. I not go in THERE!"

And then she stomped off, her plump bottom wriggling in angry jiggles.

So. It wasn't about spitting at all, but about washing. PP thought about checking out the Steam Room and seeing if there were a crowd of Vagina Washing Women in there. But then again, this did seem a bit unlikely. While a good story.

Plus,why the banishment to the steam room anyway? Why not utilize the shower for this, admittedly, private activity in a public place. Cuz, maybe some women just took showers at the Y and didn't shower at home at all? Or maybe some women liked the exhibistionistic aspect of public showers. Though PP thinks this isn't the case. They just want to get clean.

And isn't this what being in the shower is all about? Washing? (Though PP has to admit that sometimes the Vagina Washing can get very inhibited, but this kind of inhibition fascinates rather that repulses her.)

As Spitting Woman must have demonstrated? Was she spitting in disgust at PW's Vagina Washing?

Could this really be?





Nah. This couldn't really be.
Or could it?
Well, if so, PP is gonna have to just point out to Spitting Woman that, in fact, the signage is very clear:
"No urinating, no spitting, no tooth brushing in the showers."
Nowhere does it say, "No Vagina Washing in the Showers! All Vagina Washing must be transacted in the Steam Room."

PP smiled.
Stories.
She just couldn't help finding them.
And then she was strangely compelled to write them down.
Now what the hell was that about?





Maybe she'd have to spend some time in the steam room to find out.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

DL's Time Poem



you know time is passing cuz you're not saying that
anymore
you know its passing cuz you have to work again and run
outa the door
you know its passing cuz mac and dom are screaming proudly
you know its passing cuz they want their kibble badly and
LOUDLY





you know its passing cuz tidbit finally got you a chapter
you know its passing cuz you're hungry at utopia and after
you know its passing cuz lizard neck is back
you know its passing cuz you just wanna go to hawaii and
unpack





you know its passing cuz its fucking freezing outside
you know its passing cuz you had a melt down and cried
you know its passing cuz your hair is bad then beautiful
you know its passing cuz you were late answering this
email!!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

How do you know Time is passing?





"Where is everyone tonight?" PP asked DL as they luxuriated in the hot tub post swim and workout at the Y. All the usual suspects were absent this evening--no Diabetes Woman, No Hot Tub Mama, no Breast Pumping Woman, no Marvelous M.

"I dunno...." DL murmured, happy in the warmy bubbles.

"It's the showers." Super Swimmer Woman called out to them from her drying off routine at the bench. "They're cold."

"But how would you know they're cold till you got here?" PP asked.

SSW laughed her silent hunched over chuckle, shaking her head. "Good question."

"I think it's the Time Change," PP began. She likes to blame everything on the time change every year. This year she even rebelled. Didn't turn back her clocks for 3 days. She just HATES it when Daylight savings time ends. IT so sucks. The dark. The dark. And the dark.




"Maybe," DL nods.
"Yeah, everyone thinks it's really 10:30 instead of 9:30, so they're all at home watching Dirty Sexy Money instead of swimming," PP jokes.






True no one had been in the pool either. Which was lovely! A lane to herself. What a luxury even if the water was a bit cold. (Again, the cold water situation---the showers affect the pool? But how does the pool know the showers are cold? And why do cold showers mean a cold pool? Does the cold water run off the showers, down the drain and into the pool? Disgusting!)

And so, PP is always wondering, and tonight she wondered if it really was the time change. And then why is there a time change? And isn't Time just an artificial construct to quote her co-worker at WWU? And when she asked DL this, "How do we know that time is passing?"
DL had said, "Cuz you're not saying that anymore."
PP had to think about this for a moment and about how it was true. But then. How else do we know time is passing?

PP is always much more literal than DL, who is a poet and is always saying profound and poetic observations. So PP came up with this poem beginning with DL's profundity and ending with PP's literal soap operaness. If that's a word:


How do you know that time is passing?

You know Time is passing cuz you're not saying that anymore
You know it's passing cuz the can of cat food is empty



You know it's passing cuz your bangs are in your eyes again
You know it's passing cuz it's DARK
You know it's passing cuz your lizard neck is better
You know it's passing cuz the dove bars are all gone
You know it's passing cuz that crazy needy yin yang student just left
You know it's passing cuz you have to go to the bathroom again
You know it's passing cuz you're HUNGRY
You know it's passing cuz the water bottle is half empty
You know it's passing cuz it's goddamn standard time again
You know it's passing cuz the Election is FINALLY over
You know it's passing cuz you Eliana got eliminated from ANTM
You know it's passing cuz Reese asked Bianca to marry her on All My Children and Bianca said
YES!!!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Tango Fanstasy





Such a delicious swim in the rain at Mills super warm bed bathtub pool!(The Lovely I had said her swim was like being in a cozy bed --all warm and snug--PP hadn't heard this comment, but only second hand from JJ--yet it made sense, for most people. But for PP, the pool is so much better than bed! Bed is so problematic what with neck aches, and wrong dreams and the stupid cat waking her up 5 times a night to be let out. The pool, on the other hand, is heaven! Esp. when it's warm and she has her own lane and the little rain drops come pelting down on her cap creating tiny cold beads of sound in the warm cocoon of the water!)



Yet this isn't what she was gonna write about. Of course there's the lady with Feline Obsession Disorder who showed PP and JJ her album (No, this is no joke--she ran outside in the driving rain to retrieve her cat photos to show JJ and PP her cats in various upside down poses in her beauteous garden while PP and JJ were trying to get outta the bathroom to the tune of the obnoxious screaming swim team girls who were yelling about how they'd be right out, "Just gimme a minute, Kristy! I just gotta take a Poop and call my mom.)




Anyway, FOD woman was insane with her cat photos and PP and JJ were suitably cat polite, but this is just too much to write about right now.

No. PP really wants to write about Tango.

Prof Russian Woman Swimmer with an opinion about everything and an expert on everything was encouraging JJ to take Tango lessons after JJ mentioned that her neighbor or a friend of her neighbor or her cousin's neighbor or whatever taught Tango and wouldn't that be fun? But she needed a partner. And PP had said, "Well, isn't that why you take tango? To meet a partner?"
And then PRWS nodded and announced, "Yes. Tango is full of men. They equate Tango with the Slave Master Fantasy. And what I've found is that in this case, the Reality is Better than the Fantasy."





So, Tango. Yes. The reality is better than the Fantasy?

PP is ready for some reality like that!

Hell, her fantasy life is sorely lacking. Maybe it's time to taste a bit of this tango reality?

Can she take Tango lessons in the pool?

Now there's a Fantasy!