No hard feelings

Today, I made a couple of mistakes. Two, to be exact. First, I was all packed and ready for my Muay Thai class. Wrists wrapped, full water bottle, a change of clothes. I got there, peeked through the locked door, and saw that the only semblance of a human being was a hamstring stretched across the floor. The one instructor who’s stretch I interrupted opened the door and regarded me with mild amusement. Sorry you’re an idiot, he seemed to say. Apparently I have to call to make appointments. I had mistakenly generalized the expectation that classes would go on with or without me, as is the case with bigger and more established gyms. I blabbered on about what I didn’t know, quickly resigning myself to the fact that he wasn’t going to give me a private lesson. Come on, I’ve come all the way here. And I’d worked up a sweat coming up the stairs. He called me ‘pretty girl’. What a waste of my #athleisure.

As I was about to leave, I spotted another poster: FIT! GYM! PERFECT! I made my way over to the place, as half-assed as my now singularly wrapped wrists. I’ll cheat my way into a free trial gym session, I decided. What did I have to lose? I smiled my best Duchenne smile, approached the receptionist and said “so do you guys do trial sessions or what?” She handed me over to the manager. And he brought me to an office with a table and two chairs. He’s a friend of celebrities, a retired Kong Fu artist and stunt double. He’s well traveled and speaks to me as a father would about potential. The next thing I know, I’m befriending the entire place, his buddies who are good at salsa, the woman on staff who shows me the sauna in the changing room. He greets a gym-goer, whom I recognize as someone who graduated the year I finished my first year of highschool. We both do a double-take. For some reason, I let the manager in on the secret. I know that guy! And he is more than happy to share with me the details of the Graduate’s life- he’s a really great jazz musician; comes from a family of them, Filipinos. He’s been going to this gym for years, have you met his girlfriend? At the end of it all, when he’s circling the prices, I am the one who feels cheated. This is a members-only gym, he said, finally. From the beginning, there was no chance of a free trial. From the beginning, there was no chance of my joining. I wonder if he could sense the reticence. Deception stinks; I can’t tell if I’ve made a friend…

Life lesson: when you’re a liar, you have a general mistrust of others.
Glorious moment: when Colbie Caillat’s ‘Bubbly’ played at the gym. Ye get pumped!


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