Dear SissyFuss:
Just because I spoke to you on one isolated occasion does not mean we are buddies, bosom or otherwise. I’m sorry I ever paid even the slightest bit of attention to you. Believe me, if I could take it back, I would.
I have dubbed you SissyFuss in honor of the most vigorous portion of your Olympian workout: the part where you increase the incline of your treadmill to a quad-busting 3%, grasp the hip-level bar in front of you, and then lean forward and press into it not as if forcing a two-ton boulder up a mountain but as if nudging a two-gram pebble up a molehill.
Your workout, Sisyphean effort included, is, without a shred of an iota of a doubt, an absolute fucking waste of time. Why do you even bother dragging your meatless carcass out of the house every morning pre-dawn? Indeed, given the rate of speed with which you move your scrawniness around the gym floor, I figure you’d have to leave your apartment (four blocks away) at 3:00 in order to reach the gym by 6:00. Believe me, you’d expend more calories sleeping for those three additional hours than you do during your entire sleepwalk of a workout.
Every morning you approach the row of treadmills clad in what appears to be an expensive black nylon jogging suit. You drape a white towel around your translucent neck in anticipation of the copious sweat that your half hour, 1.9 m.p.h. walk cannot possibly produce. Occasionally you wrap it quite securely around your neck and tuck it into your barely unzipped jacket, thus creating a very fetching terrycloth ascot.
Yesterday morning you were crestfallen when you tiptoed up the stairs and found that your preferred treadmill on the end was already occupied. However, when you craned your periscope neck and realized that the one to my right was free, you dashed (or what, for you, passes as dashing) over and stared at me, slackjawed, in disbelief of the serendipity. You turned to me as if to say something, but I continued to gaze straight ahead at my own unfazed expression reflected in the mirrors that line the facing wall.
You entered your information into the treadmill’s panel — a proud 1.9 m.p.h. — and then, within mere seconds, started jabbing the air with flaccid arms half the size of mine, weightlifting gloves encasing feeble fists that hoist weights about as heavy as soup cans. You watched me increase the speed on my panel. Every time I adjusted my speed, there you were, peeking first at the panel and then looking up at my profile.
Perhaps, SissyFuss, you haven’t heard of this really cool thing the kids these days are calling peripheral vision. Y’see, I can see you watching me. Do you not know that when you duck your head, chin into your concave chest, and turn your face toward me, I can actually see you focusing on my ass? When you turn to your left and stare at my profile, I can see you. I can see you. I. Can. Fucking. SEE. You.
You may also want to rethink your brilliant strategy of pretending to stretch those burning hamstrings at the top of the stairs that you know I’ll be passing in a few moments on my way to the mat area on the other side of the floor. You may also want to reconsider doing pushups anywhere near me on those mats, because believe me, when I see that you can barely complete five before your quivering stick-arms collapse, and that your range of motion is about three inches, it doesn’t take a whole lot for my imagination to make the leap from gym mat to bedroom.
It’s not just that I run four times as fast as you do, or do at least five times as many pushups (and not those pathetic girlie ones either) as you, or lift more weight than you, that makes you so damned unappealing. I mean, yeah, that has something to do with it. Because as much as I don’t care for hulking walls of muscle and brawn, I do like a man I can imagine picking me up and carrying me over a puddle. I mean, hey, even a strong girl likes to feel protected.
No, what makes you truly unappealing is your quiet yet apparent desperation. You reek of it more than of the sweat you don’t work up. Perhaps if you parlayed all of the energy you waste trying to get me to acknowledge you into actually working out, I wouldn’t have to ignore you. As far as I’m concerned, you’re just another pathetic pebble-pusher. And I much prefer a boulder approach.