Ladies of Leisure

I have to take a moment to digress from the Elephant In The Room — that I just bought a new bike with a completely different set-up 2.5 weeks from the actual 2-day ride — to discuss my gym.

I’ve changed gyms recently — I formerly lurked at the LA Fitness in Bellevue, but then between driving home, then to the school, acquiring my son, and driving back to Bellevue, and then driving home again, I was contributing needlessly to the oil crisis (and my budget) and therefore switched gyms at a $10 premium to the one by my house. That’s fine, I have the excel worksheet to prove I’m actually saving money.

I live in what I would call a “bubble”. This “bubble”, called Sammamish, is a neighborhood of privilege and McMansions, of 5-year-olds with cellphones and 16-year-olds with new cars. I know this because I grew up here in what is now the only 1970’s rambler that exists in Sammamish, when it was not Sammamish but was “Unincorporated King County”. In those days, the joke was that if you had an emergency you called Domino’s Pizza, because they’d get there faster than the King County sheriff. (And it was true.)

I do not fit in the bubble — or at least not from my point of view — but I live here for two reasons: 1. it’s the house I grew up in and I have configured it exactly the way I like it and it’s far enough from my neighbors that I can do what I like how I like when I like without worrying about what they will think; and 2. It is in an excellent school district, which is not something you monkey around with when you have a kiddo.

At any rate, I was at the gym this morning, applying makeup to face (this is a very necessary part of the morning regimen because if I don’t I scare people) and was noting the following:

1. One lady arrived at the gym, put all of her stuff in front of the nicest shower, and then went to work out. That is to say, she blocked the shower from use by anyone else for an hour. As I was applying makeup she came in and proceeded to go about her business as though this was perfectly okay, despite pointed looks from the rest of us. (This is all the more important when we note that there are only TWO showers in the ladies locker room).

2. Another lady was pitching her “Staging/Decorating” business. In the locker room. At full volume. She was very very carefully explaining to another lady that she didn’t do any organization, really, she just rearranged the furniture a client already has in order to optimize the functional space and/or make it ready for sale. She’s very good at it, and she charges $100 an hour. Figure it takes her 4-5 hours to do a standard house (that’s her figuring) but you know she doesn’t go through paperwork and all of that, that’s more of an Organizer (her friend does that) and they’re going to go into business together (but still keep their separate licenses) etc. etc. etc. And she has her card right there. So handy. During the course of the discussion, though, it was very apparent that her conversational partner could neither get a word in edgewise nor convince her that she understood the first time.

3. It is immediately evident which ladies work and which do not. Those of us who work are there to work out, get showered/changed/made up and are OUT the door. And it’s great that some ladies do not work and have that luxury, truly: just please do not block thoroughfares with your conversations. Move to the side. It’s a gym, ladies, Starbucks is a block away.

I wonder if they notice anyone or anything around them, I really do.

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