Y’all remember that rash I had on my back last winter that spread from the base of my tailbone all the way up to neck? Maybe I didn’t blog about it but I sure walked around complaining and using everything I could get my hands on as a back scratcher. Yardsticks, convex corners, forks, barbecue utensils, and finally, an actual “backscratcher” from the dollar store! Also, by the way, this is how I became addicted to T&T Supermarkets daily dim sum, just so I can hoard chopsticks to stick in my back in the privacy of my car. It was my “stress” rash, I had no idea why else it was there but to divert my attention from the rest of the shit that was going on at the time.
My stress rash became part of my identity for a while. I talked about it to people I thought could help. My family doctor, the Botox nurse, and an aesthetician. They all had stupid solutions that involved some form of expensive cream. Here’s the deal: If something is causing a rash on your skin, it’s coming from within, a topical treatment might help the symptom but not cure the ill. Whatever the problem is, will come out somewhere else. I might be a crazy, overly sensitive LOCA, but I know slapping some pancake on a zit will never clear a pore. And no amount of cortisone cream or emu oil is going to calm my fucking nerves. My skin might clear up but instead I might end up growing a horn in the middle of my forehead. Or a tail.
So months went by, stuff got resolved; Divorce papers signed, quit the real estate biz, decided to grow hair long but maintain a face framing fringe, and lo and behold, I noticed my rash was completely gone! Was I right or what? Removed all the stress and the skin cleared! I rock! Or so I thought…
Coinciding with all my personal drama, was the demise of the whirlpool at my gym. I’m not going to name the place *per se* but! it’s on the Lakeshore and the building is actually on landfill that used to be a garbage dump. Every two seconds, the foundation cracks and things go awry. The floor is so wonky that the entire fitness area is like an Escher sketch where the stationary bikes turn into treadmills and the stairmaster actually sinks into the ground so you don’t really need to plug it in. The tennis courts have hills. The upside is that stray balls roll back to you. People at that gym don’t get tennis elbow nearly as much as they end up with vertigo. And then, with some of the ladies, the vertigo turns into a severe case of cuntitis but that’s for another day.
My favourite part of the gym is the bath. The whirlpool in the women’s pleeb class locker room had the best pressure wash in the city. Trust me, I know from your shitty backyard hot tub the difference between pulsating power and ca-ca stew. If you didn’t hold on to the edges, you would be blown from one end of the pool to the other. That south-east jet was my boyfriend. I named him Jet. And when I say “boyfriend” that’s basically what I mean. He never let me down. He fixed the crick in my neck and my right hip flexer. When he shot his force on my glutes and hamstrings, it felt like beating. I know that sounds bad but sometimes a lady needs a pounding.
Most of the time there are other women in the tub. Don’t get excited because it is not like Hefner’s Grotto. It is more like a bunch of grandmas after an aquafit class trying to get warm. They sit in the circle, back to the jets, and talk about absolute crap. You just have to hold your horses and break a bunch of blood vessels and wait for them to prune even more than they already are so you can have your alone time. Some of the young moms with their kids in the daycare have no time for this, so they pretend they are targeting their “quadriceps.” Oh those brutal lunges from Group Power! I have a high embarrassment threshold so I can sit with the old bitches face-to-face in the tit soup and arc my back, tilt my pelvic floor facing the jet so that my boyfriend is giving it to me doggy-style. And that is all that I’m going to say about that EXCEPT that in June, the whirlpool closed down for repairs.
The whole summer went by, no Jet for mama. You can do all the yoga you want, but lady will get stiff bones for a lack of stiff bone, if you know what I mean. The whirlpool promised to be open in September, and because of the severity of the repair, it got pushed back to November. I got used to it being boarded up and the sign with the apologies on the glass door, just above the table with the bowl of “free” apples. No joke, that’s how they tried to placate us. The only apple that was ever worth its salt was the one that Eve gave Adam. It should have been a bowl full of batteries and maybe then we would think they actually cared.
A couple of days ago, the whirlpool was open after 6 months! My boyfriend’s back! I screamed inside my head. I have learned to shut my pie hole in the locker room. Ladies overhear things, misconstrue, and before you know it, you are no longer part of a cookie exchange, book club, round robin, Tupperware party, and whatever else group requires a vagina. I had a short workout, and by “short” I mean I got undressed and high-tailed it over to the tub to see my long-lost boyfriend. I didn’t care for the new iridescent blue tiles. Don’t try to dazzle me, I just want my jet. I swoomed (a cross between swim and zoom) over to my spot and plunked down to get reacquainted. Well, you can just guess what. Jet was not the same. Jet had less water pressure than icicle melting on a sunny day in February. I tried the other ones, and same thing. They all needed Cialis. No power, no mojo, just a bunch pretty tiles in a tub of water full of stray pubes.
Sadly, I got out and dried myself off. Almost immediately I was itchy. And sure enough, when I turned around to look in the mirror, my back was a red and not from a beating. So much for my rash theory, it turns out the water in the tub that causes the problem. So that settles that, no more whirlpool. And so much for my rash theory. Still I’m sad because I really did love Jet.
And speaking of water damage, I have a special request to ask of all of you. My friend, Trish, who owns a Toronto local roofing company called Fixer on the Roof, is a finalist in the American Express Small Business Contest. Amex is giving away $10,000 to help a small company, check her out here and please vote for her, click on the link below, go to “Vote” and her profile comes up, it’s easy! Thanks for your help, she really deserves it! You know my gym on the Lakeshore actually uses duct tape to repair the leaks in the roof, she would NEVER stand for that. Contest runs until November 28, so vote daily, and when it’s done, as a reward, I’m going to publish a tour of Hugh Hefner’s Grotto on this post, so keep coming back!