We, the people, are beat over the head constantly with looking perfect from beach body articles and magazines on a daily basis. All of us strive for that perfect body that we can flex in the mirror by ourselves or with two hookers in a NYC apartment that we then chase around with chainsaws because we’re “psycho” and “American.” Every day in my inbox I get a tip from Men’s Fitness or Men’s Health or Men’s Cat Fancy telling me another tip on how to get the best abs in ONLY 10 minutes a day or how to name my nonexistent cat so it doesn’t resent you for life. Unfortunately, I’ve only carved out 4 and 3/4 minutes a day to do this and have a mediocre to below average abdominal region for immediate viewing.
On the other hand I would name my cat, DJ Scat.
Even the people that we think have perfect bodies like (insert celebrity that was in a period piece battle movie) always have to work out to keep that body in shape. That’s why the gym was invented. Starting January second of every year the gym is littered with people trying to get themselves into better shape, keep their shape, or just watch Larry King Live with no sound on. Then on January 15th the gym is back to normal attendance because those people realize that their significant other loves them for them and not because they need to be a size 3 or 32 inch waist. That and American Idol is on and I totally have to vote tonight because my vote counts in a reality show where nothing counts.
Yes We CAN!
I’m still fascinated by who invented some of this equipment at the gym. It has my favorite piece of equipment ever invented. In the list of inventions it surpasses the toaster oven (A mini oven? That toasts? Unreal) and the air hand dryer in bathrooms (drying off with air? Air is all around us. Stop the madness). It’s the stair climber. What was the thought process into making that? “Let’s see, what do people hate the most? Got it. Climbing stairs. Let’s develop something that simulates stair climbing, but you actually aren’t going anywhere. It’ll make hundreds, nay, tens.” Yet, at the gym this is always the most popular thing. People love climbing stairs that go to absolutely nowhere in a space where nothing goes anywhere. I used to work in a building on the 9th floor, not once did I hear someone say, “Let’s take the stairs.” But at the gym, let’s climb to freedom! The popularity of the stair climber at the gym is like creating a new restaurant solely based on the circus peanut and having no available tables for the next fortnight.
Welcome to Circus Peanut, your table of disgusting is ready.
Of course, I rag on all of these contraptions and continually use them all so I can get a good look at all the guys hitting on the front desk girl with their lame excuses of “My ID doesn’t work,” “My shorts are too tight,” and “which way is the Steroid dispenser?” Every time I use the machines it asks you to put in your weight and age. And without fail, every time I lie to the machine. Weight? Shave off 5 pounds. Now, it’s totally ok to lie to your wife or political opponent, but lying to an inanimate object? Well, that’s the lowest of the low. What’s next? The ShamWow only holds 8x its weight in liquid and not 12?
Does it help me to be lying to the machine? Of course it does! The machine doesn’t talk back to me. Doesn’t break down my psyche. It accepts who I am. For better or worse. I automatically feel better about myself. Sometimes for the giggles I’ll tell the machine I’m 22 years old. For one 45 minute session I’m 22 again and trolling through the fields picking dandelions without a care in the world. But, in reality, at 22 I was living at home and asking my mother if she could bring me an orange soda because Supermarket Sweep was at the Big Sweep and I couldn’t miss yelling at the contestants to stop wasting time on the bonuses. It’s not worth it!
The Big M&M was so cute, though.
But unlike Pee-Wee Herman and Bart Simpson we actually do get older. We can’t be 22 forever. We’re not really 175 pounds of lean muscle mass. We get to the point where lying about everything to something that doesn’t talk back to us doesn’t fulfill us in the ways that it once did. In 2 days I will be changing the number in front of my age to a 3. I won’t be able to make fun of friends that turned 30 only months or days before I did. My friends have talked me out of this deep depression since 30 is the new 20 or some other lame cliché, but that makes no sense since we couldn’t drink at 20 in the US. Luckily, I’ve saved my fake ID. I’ve come to grips that I can’t stop time or go in reverse. We get older. We get wiser. We get tired at an earlier time. We drink warm milk. So in two days I’ll have to change the age on the stair climber to 30 and life will go on. I’ll shudder and climb the steps to Murder She Wrote re-runs.
Or I’ll just leave it at 29.
No one will ever know.