Warning: this post contains smugness. And also penises.
I had a more stressful than usual week at work, and I didn’t eat my stress. Nor did I run away my problems. The worst day was Thursday and after work, I went to the gym and took out my stress on a cross-trainer.
I’ve been to the gym every day but one in the past two weeks. I still tire easily, but I’m getting better. And I feel better as a result. At the moment I’m just doing cardio, but I will make a start on a strength programme soon too.
I like my gym. It’s big and it has so many machines. There’s always a free bike/treadmill/cross trainer. Even the weights area has lots of room. And it’s kept very clean. Every surface is sparkling. There are only two things that make me doubt its cleanliness. One is the fact that the pool doesn’t require swimming hats. Maybe it’s an English thing, but I’ve never been in a pool in Ireland that didn’t make all swimmers wear hats. No one was wearing one here. Have Irish swimming pools been lying to me about their essential nature all these years?
The other reason I sometimes think this shiny gym mightn’t be as clean as it looks is the mice. Twice now, I have seen a little mouse scuttle across the floor here. The first time, I said it to someone working at reception and she was suitably shocked. The second time I saw a mouse I said it to another staff member. She shrugged and said, “We’re below ground level here. That’s going to happen.” I couldn’t think of a response.
Something else I’ve learned from this gym is that London guys are a lot freer with their penises than Irish guys are. A lot. If you go into an Irish gym changing room you will see a penis or two, but in my London gym it’s a penis smorgasbord. Like, you’re guaranteed a good ten to fifteen penises on every visit. Obviously, I’m just going to the gym for the workout, but the penises are a nice bonus. Some Irish men act like they don’t have a penis in a changing room, which is obviously totally their right, but that seems a lot less common here. There’s also some very obvious showing off here. Like men using the hair dryers to dry their bums and willies. Or the men who put on their shirts before their boxers. Or the men who lotion their whole body after a shower before getting dressed. On googling, I have discovered that this gym is known to be gay-friendly. I just chose it because it was beside my work, but the men in the changing rooms are not subtle. Like, there’s no touching or erections or anything. But there’s very obvious staring and flirting and showing off. Today two men shared a towel after their shower. I never saw that happening in the Longford Sport and Leisure Centre.
London’s good to me.
And I’m being good to me too. The calorie counting continues to be easy. I weighed myself today and I’ve lost another 4 pounds. That’s 25 pounds in three weeks. That’s a good feeling.
Today London was crawling in marathoners. When I started this blog seven years ago, it was with an oath to run the Dublin marathon in October 2010. It didn’t work out very well. Connor doing the London Marathon 2018 might be more realistic though!
The other way I beat my stress last week was with my weekly trip to a musical. This time it was to “An American in Paris”. It was amazing. The staging was phenomenal. I’ve never seen anything like it. Even if you hated musicals, you’d probably still love it because it’s just so beautiful to look at. The story made absolutely no sense and there was a bit too much artsy dance but I didn’t care because the set was magical and the songs were incredible.
The audience there had an older, more refined feeling than any of the other musicals I’ve been to here so far. There were none of the school kids who’d been to Wicked when I was there. And none of the drunken tourists who’d been at Mamma Mia. The audience here was very much made up of reunions of women who’d been to boarding school together in the 1950s and people bringing their mother-in-law out for a treat.
This made the disruptions hilarious. An intellectually disabled woman was in the audience. During one early scene, she shouted “Rotten tomatoes!” at the top of her voice at the stage. I nearly died of laughter as everyone around me looked appalled. It was even funnier when two female characters on stage greeted each other with a kiss on the cheeks and she shouted “Ladies shouldn’t kiss ladies! It’s wrong!” Eventually, after a stressed confrontation with an usher, she left.
Later in the show, the curtain suddenly dropped during a dance number and a voice came over the loudspeaker saying that they were sorry for the unexpected interruption and that the show would continue shortly. There was a sense of unease throughout the audience. Of course I immediately thought of the Bataclan. Was this how I was going to die?
I still don’t know why the show was interrupted. After ten minutes, the curtain lifted again and the show continued.
Drama suits the theatre.