4/13/2005

An unfortunate course of events

I confess. I can’t enchant my readers with Old West Lore like Latigo Flint. Nor can I wax poetic on the vagina like Blog Ho. Lacking computer expertise, I can’t dazzle my readers with graphical parodies like Bennet, 8ZERO8 or KICKASS. And I certainly can’t titillate like ChickenStrip, YGWIN, Grace, Toni or the other fabulous girl bloggers. Usually, I dive into the bowels of my imagination in search of fodder for a post. And when I unearth something that doesn’t stink too badly, I crap it onto my laptop and upload it to Blogger. Hopefully, my dear readers don’t have to hold their noses while they read.

I may lack the tools of the trade when it comes to blogging. But I can recount a story as good as anybody, especially when it’s the gospel truth. And I’ve got a humdinger of a true story for you tonight.

Today I went to my local gym. I’ve been going a few months now. I find the elliptical trainer is more than a match for all the fried food, sweets and booze I cram down my gullet. So I go to the gym 5 days a week and spend an hour like a hamster on a wheel. In exchange, I spend the next 23 hours not being a fat slob, which surely would come to pass should I discontinue my exercise regimen.

My gym features satellite television in the cardio room. I find it a welcome distraction from the monotony of the elliptical trainer and the sweaty swamp at the convergence of my boxer shorts and ball sack. You haven’t had a sweaty crotch until you’ve spent an hour on the elliptical trainer. But I digress.

The television is usually locked on FoxNews. That’s fine with me. Fox broadcasts business news at noon, and I always enjoy getting a heads-up on which industries are on-deck to fornicate my financial sphincter. Lately, it’s been Big Oil. Once Oil busts a nut, some other Wall Street bruiser will accept the tag and position itself squarely behind me. Anyway, today Foxnews wasn’t on. Instead, some gay-ass soap opera was blaring and polluting the gymnasium air. Luckily, the satellite remote was near. I grabbed it. The thing looked and felt unfamiliar in my hand, just like that evening with my counselor at summer camp back in 1982. I have cable TV. I couldn’t make sense of the satellite remote. But I asked myself, how different can it be? I figured I’d surf my way up to FoxNews and then hide the remote, perhaps in the aforementioned swamp between my legs. The only one who would dare look for the remote there would be Julio, the café clerk. No lo puedes tocar, Julio!

I started pressing buttons. Through a series of fumbles and over-corrections, I had conjured a category 5 shit storm. The TV had a couple different pull-down menus, 3 picture-in-picture frames, the programming guide, and a Friends rerun going simultaneously. Damn that condescending prick, Chandler! Worse, I somehow managed to crank the volume up to levels not known since the last Iron Maiden concert. Several club members registered their impatience with glares and sighs. I felt a hot blush wash over my face. I was in a pressure cooker now. I had to navigate my way out of this shit storm fast. I was pressing buttons like a school girl with a Bon Jovi CD cover. I no longer cared about FoxNews. I’d settle for anything. Hell, I would have settled for Oprah, Emeril, Murder She Wrote, even the Teletubbies -- that purple gay one. Push, push, push. The TV screen looked like a Grand Finale, or that climactic scene in the movie War Games when the WHOPPER is fixing to blow up the world. This was going from bad to worse.

And then it happened.

Porn. Pornography. Yep, a freggin’ porn channel blaring through the gymnasium. Liquid sex oozing from the Zeinith 27 inch and into my personal hell. And not just any porn. It was gay porn. I guess if you’re going to go down, you might as well go down in flames, huh?

The shock of the scene and my sweaty hands conspired on a cruel joke. I fumbled the remote. It fell to the floor and ejected several batteries which rolled under the elliptical trainer. Helpless and hapless, I looked up at the TV. At the moment, several sailors had stolen away into the boiler room. Evidently it was so hot they had to remove their pants and shirts. It occurred to nary a seaman to remove their hat or kerchief. But again, I digress. A loud scream brought me back to the nightmare of my situation. I turned to the source of the scream and spied a middle-aged soccer mom with a look of abject horror on her face. Her right hand covered her gaping mouth. Her left raised and pointed at me, accusing me, as if I chose this course of events. Calm down, soccer mom. Like you’ve never seen a sailor before!

Currently my problems were compounding. The soccer mom’s screams alarmed a class of female cardio kick boxers. As luck would have it, today’s lesson focused on how to counter attack and disable a sexual assailant. Swell. Women in Spandex and midriff tank tops jumped, tumbled and back-flipped into the cardio room. They glanced at the TV screen, then at the soccer mom -- petrified and still pointing -- and finally at me. I could only shrug my shoulders at the kick boxers while I calculated a reasonable explanation for the gay orgy currently featured on the television. While I can give me readers a perfectly understandable account of how this happened, at the time, under duress and several naked sailors, I managed to mutter a single word: “N-n-n-nnn-news.”

I didn’t interpret their attack postures as a good sign. I hadn’t a single compassionate ear in the gymnasium, save Julio, who had evidently heard the ruckus and sprinted to the cardio room. In Julio’s eyes I spied the sparkle of compassion -- and a bit of excitement. But he was no match for the 15 angry, martial arts-trained women who currently encircled me. I realized now that things would come to fisticuffs…

Dial in next time for the exciting conclusion.

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