The Ugly Stick had bonked the hot tub at the Berkeley Y big time!
PP keeps swimming in the freezing B Y pool. She hates this pool. It’s always cold! But it was the only choice since the stupid Oakland Y closed their pool and in fact the entire facility for the week—so DL and PP had ventured into the land known as Bezerkely.
Now, trying to keep her muscles from completely freezing up on her, PP keeps an eye on the hot tub. Yet…..like she said, the Ugly Stick had been working overtime. At least a dozen Ugly Stick Men were lounging about in the tub, their scraggly beards wet and stringy, their paunchy stomachs hairy and wet, their….
Okay you get the idea.
PP doesn’t want to make you sick.
(What is it about Berkeley and the Ugly Stick? Later in Utopia, PP mentions this to DL and she just nods and pronounces: “It’s the Smug Lack of Hygiene Aspect.”)
Yup. PP doesn’t want to take a hot tub with this Aspect, yet no one seems to be leaving and she’s getting colder and colder and colder till, finally she has to get out of the pool and venture over to the tub.
Is there room for her?
She’s super cold and afraid. Wishes that DL were with her, but knows that DL had had enough of the Berkeley Male Aspect. Earlier they’d ventured up to the Free Weights room, had stood at the door, staring in at the torture machines, unsure if this was the right spot. A Berkeley Groovy Guy with snow white hair and too tall legs in too short shorts sneaks up behind them. “You can go in!” he exclaims. “We can?” PP asks. Like they need his permission? “Absolutely!” he cries and then opens the door for them. DL gives PP a look like she’s gonna explode.
PP remembers this look from the first time she met DL at Polar Bear ice cream on 4th of July when the line was out the door and all the idiot tourists couldn’t make up their minds if they wanted a ‘sugar cone or a natural cone.’
So, tonight, with this look, DL and PP go into the Free Weight room, Too Tall Absolutely Man heads in ahead of them, ignoring them now. “What a sexist!” DL hisses. PP laughs, but knows that it’s serious really. Berkeley. So politically correct?
“He’s a Fem Perv” DL asserts later in Utopia.
What an apt description. Only a Poet Feminist would come up with this.
Anyway, back to the hot tub full of many Fem Pervs no doubt, PP climbs in, squeezing between a withered African American Hot Tub Elder and a pasty goat teed pasty blob.
“The gang is all here, my man!” AAHTE calls out to no one in particular. PP smiles in spite of her discomfort. Glad that she wasn’t really a part of this gang on a regular basis. One night was enough as she watches an emaciated Santa Claus pontificate as only Bekeleites can do about the lack of education in ……blah blah blah….
PP really misses Aquatopia in Oakland with the hilarious naked ladies that are familiar territory. It’s hard to be in a new place.
And so it is that they don’t know anyone and no one really talks to them till they’re getting dressed at the end of the night, PP trying to gather all of her crap up out of her locker, off the floor, out of the towel, DL lying comatose on the bench when a Pleasant Pasty Woman lumbers into their aisle.
Hurriedly PP tries to move all of her shit. “Sorry, I don’t need to be takin' up the entire bench,” she apologizes.
“That’s ok,” PPW nods, watching as PP piles her Swim a Mile bag to the brim.
“Your stuff does not all fit in your bag,” PPW observes.
“Yeah, why is that?” PP laughs. “It expands. Must be the wet swimsuit.”
She nods, understanding. “And your fins. They don’t fit in your bag?”
“Nah, I have to carry them. The expansion is too much.”
“And the expanded weight is so hard for me to carry,” PP grins, “esp. since I’ve gotten smaller!”
They all laugh, even DL who’s woken up from her coma.
Later, walking to the car, DL comments on PP’s ‘joke’ and how before this exchange they hadn’t talked to anyone. “But I guess we don’t know anyone here at Berkeley,” she muses.
“We know Laughing at Expansion Woman!” PP exclaims.
”And Fem Perv Man!”
DL wrinkles her nose, “Where’d you park?”
Laughing, PP points to the Geo down the block as they head toward DL’s car.