I've always believed that my demise would ultimately occur at my old gym, and I've always believed that the cause of my demise would have something to do with one of the many fat women there. I've chronicled my narrow escapes from these monstrosities many times over the years, beginning back in the summer of 2010 when one of the fat women nearly ate me.
It's always been a fight for survival at my gym pool. There have been obese women who have nearly pulled me into an orbit around their celestial bodies. Others have come very close to trampling me, moving through the water like a herd of elephants. One monstrous lady even transformed into a kraken, trying her best to ensnare me with her tentacles. I still have no idea how I escaped.
Over the past few weeks, however, I've come to realize that I may perish in a different sort of manner at my old gym. I've been so concerned about evading the mouths of these fat women that I completely ignored the other patrons. They, on the other hand, have been paying plenty of attention to me. It turns out that they absolutely hate me, and some of them may even want me dead.
Now, you may think I'm exaggerating. OK, I wasn't actually in danger of being eaten by fat women, and one of the obese ladies didn't really take the form of a giant octopus (though she did resemble one). But I'm being completely honest about some of the other gym members plotting my death - and I'm sure you'll agree with me upon reading these stories...
I had no idea that people hated me at the gym until I had an altercation with the Mad Couple. These are two heavy-set Russians in their 70s. The husband is a bald man with a giant belly, who wears glasses in the pool for some strange reason. His wife, who dyes her hair jet black, is even larger; in fact, I feel like her husband needs a wheel barrow just to move her around. I honestly have no idea how her legs support her ghastly midsection.
Mad Husband got into my lane as I was a quarter way through my mile. I thought nothing of it until he stood in front of me as I got to the wall. I thought this was rude, but he apparently thought the same of me.
Mad Husband: Vhy you make a splash?
Mad Husband: You make a big splashing! Boom! Boom! Boom! Boom!
Me: What are you talking about?
Mad Husband: You make a big splash! No need make big splash! Need svim qviet! No splash!
Ugh, here we go. I've been accused of splashing too much before, but as I've pointed out, if you watch any YouTube video of Olympic swimming, you'll see that Michael Phelps and all of the other swimmers splash as well. It's physically impossible not to splash if you're swimming fast.
At any rate, I tried to go the logical route with this guy.
Me: Is this a pool?
Mad Husband: Yes.
Me: Is there water in this pool?
Mad Husband: Yes! Vater! Yes!
Me: Then you shouldn't be concerned about getting splashed!
Mad Husband: But splash no good! You no good svim!
All right, now he pissed me off...
Me: If you don't like the way I swim, get the hell out of this lane!
Mad Husband: You get hell out of zis line!
Me: I was here first!
Mad Husband: Vhat makes difference!?
Me: You're the one complaining that you don't like how I swim, so get the hell out of here!
Mad Wife, who was two lanes over, joined in the argument. She began yelling (also in a Russian accent) about getting splashed from across the pool, which was impossible. But she was defending her husband, which I understood because if he got mad at her, he wouldn't push her around in the wheel barrow.
Mad Wife: You make a big splash!
Mad Husband: Stop make big splash!
Me: To hell with you both! If you don't want to get wet, leave the damn pool!
I just took off and continued my mile. Mad Husband remained in my lane for a few minutes before moving over. I don't know why he didn't just do that in the first place. Perhaps he didn't consider his options because he was so fatigued from pushing his obese wife around.
The Drowned Man
The Mad Couple aren't the only people who suffer from aquaphobia despite being in a pool. I was swimming a mile the following day when this wave entered my mouth as I was about to take a breath. I figured it was just someone jumping into the pool, though I should have known better because every single person there was 70-plus and consequently incapable of leaving the ground.
However, I knew something was up the next time I was swimming in that direction. Another wave came toward me, so I stopped to see what was going on. An old man, who appeared to be in his late 70s, was giving me an evil glare.
Old Man: Stop make a splash!
Me: You're in the next lane over!
Old Man: You make a splash! I make a splash!
The old man then cupped his hand and splashed water on me again. It was at that point that I was so unbelievably frustrated that this guy was Russian; if he could understand anything beyond basic words, I'd explain why he's a giant a**hole. While I may have been splashing him a little bit - I've swum competitively for years, so I'm quite aware of what I'm doing in the water - he was splashing me deliberately. In fact, he attempted to have water enter my mouth as I was swimming, which is quite dangerous.
I was outraged, as you can tell...
Me: I'm just swimming! You're purposely splashing me! You're an a**hole!
Old Man: I'm a**hole? You a**hole! I almost drowning in vater!
Me: Drowning!? What!?
Old Man: You make a splash! I almost drowning in vater! Is very dangeroos!
I laughed. I just laughed. I was pissed off earlier, but this guy's claim that my splashes nearly made him drown in a 5-foot pool - which he could stand in - was hilarious. So, logically, because I was apparently making this guy drown, he tried to drown me in return. That makes sense in a very weird way, I suppose.
Anyway, the old man looked pissed that I was laughing hysterically. I didn't bother answering him, and I just swam away instead. When I finished up my mile, I took one look at him and saw him sneer at me. I laughed some more.
I have no doubt that this man is plotting my death. Maybe he'll slit my throat one of these days. Perhaps he'll poison my wine at my wedding. Or better yet, he could just hand me a glass of water, expecting me to drown in it.
Something else happened the day I laughed at the Drowned Man. I was stretching upon the completion of my mile. There were two people in the free-swim area to the right of my lane. One was an Indian woman in her 30s who had just gotten into the pool. She wasn't hot or anything, but she wasn't ugly either. Considering the gym clientele, however, she was easily the most attractive woman at the pool, but only by default.
The second person in the free-swim area was a tan Russian man in his early 60s. He was wearing a cheesy gold chain and even had some gold teeth - basically a cross between some rapper and one of those idiots on the Jersey Shore, only super old and super uncool.
I quickly realized that this guy was hitting on the Indian chick. Consider the following exchanges:
Cheesy Guy: You come to gym oftoon? Indian Woman: Yeah, I'm here a lot.
Cheesy Guy: You look good! You make a svim a lot? Indian Woman: I swim a couple of times a week.
Cheesy Guy: Vhat you doing on veekend? Indian Woman: Visiting my family in New York.
Eventually, Cheesy Guy asked her where she bought her groceries. She told him that she went to Acme.
Cheesy Guy: Oho, Acme! I know zis Acme!
Indian Woman: Yeah.
Cheesy Guy: Maybe you going to Net Cost? Iz good supermarket!
Indian Woman: I heard of that.
Cheesy Guy: Yes is good, Net Cost! But zey no have color people zere, heh heh heh!
Wow. Did he really think that talking about supermarkets and calling her a colored person would help him get into her pants? She apparently wasn't buying it, so she swam away. I just shook my head, but he saw me. He then gave me the stink eye, almost as if he thought I was going to steal this Indian chick away from him.
Again, I was frustrated that I couldn't fully communicate with this guy. Otherwise, I would have assured him that I'd A) stay away from her and B) that his racist remark toward her would surely lead to some interracial sex.
I wouldn't have any better luck at the pool the following week. I went twice. On Wednesday, I had to work out in the free-swim area because all of the lanes were packed with floating corpses and monstrous whales. Most of the free-swim area was open though, so I was having a good workout until this old Asian woman backed up and crashed into me. She had the entire area open, and we were the only two people in it, so I don't get how she just collided with me. Is it some strange Asian culture to ram someone in the pool? I don't know anything about far-east cultures, so I could see that.
My Friday - which happens to be the day I'm typing this - was way more eventful. Three people criticized me for splashing too much. One was a mean-looking old woman shaped like a basketball, but she was nice about it. "Vee old vooman. Vee no vant get vet. Please to no splashing," she requested politely. So I just told her I'd try not to get her wet... even though she was in... a pool (sigh). The second was another old lady, who happened to be very skinny. She didn't understand a single word of English; she just mimicked what she thought I was doing with my arms, but like the other a**holes in the pool, she was exaggerating things.
The third person is the one worth writing about. This was a Russian guy in his mid-60s who was pretty fit for a man his age. I was in one of the middle lanes, and he was in the free-swim area, all the way across the pool. Thus, it was physically impossible that I was splashing him. He complained nonetheless.
Man: You svim like zis! Boom! Boom! Not good svim like zis!
Me: Ugh, not again. I'm swimming normally.
Man: You no svim normal! You svim like duck!
Me: Like a duck?
Man: Yes! You like duck! You svim like duck!
Me: What the hell does that even mean?
Man: Vhat mean? Mean you svim like duck!
As you can imagine, I was completely fed up with this. As far as I could tell, I was swimming normally and not really splashing anyone. I even asked the lifeguard as I was getting out if I was doing anything wrong, and he just said, "No, these people are just old and cranky."
Still though, they didn't have to be dicks about it. When Duck Man started yelling at me, I decided that it was time to start trolling these rotting carcasses.
Me: I'm swimming like a duck ... because I am a duck!
Duck Man: Vhat you mean?
Me: I am a duck. You have something against ducks?
Duck Man: I no understanding.
Me: My name is Scrooge. Scrooge McDuck. I'm a millionaire duck with three nephews, but I am a scrooge, so I come to the gym to splash all of you!
Duck Man: You splashing because you duck?
Me: Yes! You finally get it!
Duck Man: No... no... no... you sick... You sick in zee head...
Me: Are you racist against ducks? Why are you racist against ducks!?
Duck Man: You sick man! You sick!
Duck Man, completely perturbed, just swam away. He got out of the pool five minutes later, and he did so as I was resting at the wall. He looked at me with complete disdain and said something that sparked this entry:
"You sick man! You sink you duck! I go hunt duck! I shoot duck and eat zem!"
I was speechless, thought I regret not responding, "You slaughtered my brothers and sisters, you monster!" I also considered asking him if his dog laughed at him whenever he missed. I was completely taken aback by his response, however. All this time, I figured a fat woman would swallow me whole, but ironically, one of the healthier people at the pool might be the one to eat me.