Wipe That Look Off Your Face!

"Girl, you're stressin me out with That Look!" Face Reader Woman sighed heavily after delivering this verdict. PP felt like hitting her, but refrained.

"You can see the disappointment all over your face!" she continued, turning to another woman who was sharing the locker room bench with her. “We’re talking ‘bout disappointment here if you wanna know.”

PP didn’t.

She was more than Disappointed. She was furious. Imagine! Closing the pool for some unknown Random Reason on a Tuesday afternoon right when SHE was here to swim.


Yet the signage when she’d arrived said:

Pool closed on Tuesday, May 5 until 2 pm

PP has an inherent distrust of signage. Especially when it comes to pool closures. Extra especially when it comes to such closures at the Oakland Y.

So, yeah, waiting in the locker room for the pool door to ‘unlock’ at 2 pm., and believing that it might not, was making her extremely cranky. Stomping around in her pink suit, carrying her fins, frowning and cursing inwardly, (No she wasn’t saying what she was thinking OUT loud) PP was ready to explode.

Thus, when FR Woman commented upon her ‘disappointment, PP just glared at her. How the hell was she supposed to keep the ‘disappointment’ offa her face? (Her face, unfortunately, always displayed ALL of her emotions. This was something that often caused her great consternation not to mention trouble, but this day, she was trying to maintain some semblance of non-emotive decorum.)

Obviously, it wasn’t working. At least not with FR Woman.

Where the hell did she get off anyway? Telling her that PP was ‘stressin her out’? Piss off is what PP wanted to say, but FRW was bigger and looked mad too.

After all she was sitting there, suited up too, also waiting for the pool to open, and sharing her disappointment with her comrade. Maybe she just wanted PP to join in?

Like PP was gonna join in any goddamn Group Disappointment Circle while waiting for the pool to open!

"I just really need a swim!" PP managed to mutter.
FRW nodded, "I hear ya, Girlfriend. The pool's supposed to open up at 2."
"Well, it's 2 now and the door to the pool is still locked!"

FRW nodded in commiseration. She looked like she was gonna cry actually. So PP decided to go upstairs and ask at the front desk if the pool was really gonna open to avoid any actual tears.

Naturally asking at the front desk was a complete waste of time. Tromping up the stairs in her pink suit, which would usually make her self-conscious, today just added to her fury. When she reached the front desk and demanded an answer to the pool’s still closure, she was just told, “They have the go-ahead. They have the keys. They can unlock the door.”

Okay, then.....when? Today? Tomorrow? Next year? When dolphins fly?

Back down the stairs, only to confront FRW’s sad mug. “They’re supposed to open the pool any time now,” PP announced.

FRW continued to sit motionless on the bench, her disappointment partner gone now. She really did look depressed. PP wondered if she was experiencing any Pool Closure Thought Distortions, such as: “The pool will never open.” (Overgeneralization, Predicting the Future) or “If I weren’t such an Idiot I would have called first before coming all the way down here.” (Negative Self-Labeling) or “If the pool would just open goddammit, I’d be happy!” (Blaming a Situation for your Unhappiness)

PP was thinking this last one wasn’t a Distortion at all! The pool being closed unexpectedly when she really needed a swim WAS causing her unhappiness!

Stomping through the showers again, PP pushed at the door out to the pool and Voila! It was unlocked!


Stepping into the pool arena, there were already a few sneaky swimmers in the water. Damn. How the hell did they get here before her?

Whatever. PP stole over to the empty end lane and jumped in (shower be damned) and started swimming.


See she was happy now. Distorted Thinking be damned! The water’s soft embrace always did the trick, and as she swam, she started to relax until someone got in the lane without telling her and nearly ran into her head on.

Cursing and swerving to avoid a collision, PP turned and headed back down the lane only to confront FRW resting at the wall.

“You happy now?” FRW beamed, her eyes shinning behind her foggy mask.
“Oh, yeah!” PP grinned, forgiving her the non-communication lane entry transgression.

And she was. The ‘disappointment’ had been washed away. She only hoped her Pool Joy showed on her face as much as the previous distress had earlier.

Judging from FRW’s reaction, it did.

“Stopped both of us from crying!” FRW joked as she gave PP a final nod before heading back down the lane.

Laughing, PP grabbed her fins, slipped them on, and followed her in joyful non-stressed out, gliding glee.


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