Shadesbreath Joins the Gym and Learns How God Hates Him

Ready for the gym, baby!
Ready for the gym, baby!

Many of you have seen the drawings of me that often accompany this sort of silliness that I am about to write (like the one on the right there). Being the Rembrandt-level artist that I am, I have pretty well captured the, erm, magnificence that rounds out my sublime portliness. So, given that my general physical dimension has evolved to the circumferences so accurately depicted, I decided that it would be a good idea for me to join a gym.

This article will reveal what a phenomenally horrific decision that turned out to be.

First and foremost, I would like to say a great big giant unrelenting and eternally maintained “FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF— YOU!” to the hatefully beautiful, ridiculously exquisite, perfectly sculpted sixty-something guy with the perfect body, perfect face, perfect life and even perfect hair that is perfectly cropped and looks like the royal lawns outside of royal castles and that I’m absolutely certain is just like the perfectly manicured lawns outside his own castle too. And don’t think he doesn’t have one either, he does; maybe not like, you know, medieval, but I guarantee you he has a rich-ass mansion in which resides his super-model wife who lays around on an imported divan with her crotch perpetually smoking from the six-and-a-half hours of violent and perfectly-timed love-making he gives her two to three times a day, the skills for which he perfected after he finished his six tours as a Navy SEAL and has been improving ever since graduating from goddamn medical school.

F----------------!!!!!!!!!! that guy.

I swear to all that his holy. F- him.

Mr. Perfect, the 60 year old.
Mr. Perfect, the 60 year old.

And right now you think I am being hypothetical or something in that description up there. Ha-hah, Shadesbreath. Funny guy. Exaggerator. That Mr. Perfect thing. Hah ha. Great imagination.

Well, I’m not imagining. I wish I was, but I’m not.

That guy is real. And yes, I am really petty. I am fine with it. Last time I checked, I am still human, so, it is my prerogative to harbor completely unjustified hatred for whomever I want. And I am exercising that right, right now. Thank you.

Anyway, back to the story.

So there I am, my fat ass in shorts, the nuclear whiteness of skin that hasn’t seen the sun in a decade or longer blinding people in swaths like you’d expect to see killing crowds in an X-man movie after Cyclops accidently whipped his visor off. I felt pretty conspicuous being there that first day. I had that tentative poke going on the control panels of everything, that lame pawing about as I attempt to figure out the machines—you know, stab-stab, “Hey, why isn’t this starting,” stab-stab, “This button?” … “Oh shit, I can’t run this fast!!!” Yeah, that thing. And worse, you do it knowing that every second you spend not starting it up, not figuring it out, or making the spastic mash to slow it down, everyone else is exchanging glances behind your back, acknowledging amongst each other how new and fat and lame you are. “I wonder how long this one will make it?” whispers one. “Not long,” murmurs the other. “He’s a quitter; I can spot ‘em every time.”

I started to sweat just from the glare of so many eyes and from feeling so out of my universe. I was the oddball, the curiosity, the freak who wandered into the display case of some great vanity museum.

Eventually I got through my cardio warm up (the only thing that really warms up when a fat person is on a treadmill is their inner thighs, but I shan’t horrify you further). So, cardio done, I decided it was time for some weight liftin’. Enough with the sissy walkin’, it was time for some iron, baby! Oh, yeah. Hittin’ the weights. Something for the ladies, you know?

I figured I’d start with shoulders, because chicks dig shoulders. Do me some shoulder press action like they like.

I waddled along the wall of mirrors (the very existence of such a thing should have been my first clue this place was evil), picking my way down the length of the endless-seeming weight rack, looking for some dumbbells (oh, how apropos that term is), reading numbers on each as I went, theoretically making my way towards barbells suitable to my current state of nascent muscularity.

195, 190, 185... WTF?
195, 190, 185... WTF?

195, 190, 185, 180, 170… declared the numbers written on these colossal things as I passed by. 160, 150, 140… It was ridiculous. Who the hell does shoulder presses or bicep curls or anchors ships to the bottom of the sea with dumbbells of such absurdly colossal weight? No one, that’s who. This isn’t the damn League of Justice gymnasium. It's not. It's freaking 24-Hour Fitness. I even double-checked to be sure. I looked for Superman, Batman, Aquaman, none of them were there. Not even Robin or the Wonder Twins. It's a regular people gym. Humans work out there. Humans like me. So why these ludicrous weights?

Then I realized it: the 24-Hour Fitness management just put those big ones there to inspire people. Hey look, someday I will hoist these up like Superman lifting a locomotive to save Lois Lane. Won’t that be grand!

Well, nice idea. But I wasn’t inspired. I moved along.

95, 85… 75… 50… They were still pissing me off.

Fine. Okay, I admit, maybe some of the brutes milling about in the gym with the tank-top tees on, the guys with the round boulders of meat perched where a normal human’s shoulders would go… sure. I get it. It’s fine. I have a graduate degree. I know stuff about Shakespeare. Screw those guys. They can have their stupid 50 to 100 pound weights.

A rose by any other name will still shred your colon if you jam it up your ass.

Ha! I’d like to see them come up with something like that.

55, 50, 45, 40, 35… here we go. 35 pounds. There’s me, I think. I grab a pair. Gonna bust some iron, baby. Manhood, here I come. Oh, my wife is going to get some tonight.


Jesus. What the hell do they put in those things?

Did you know that two 35 pound dumbbells actually weigh 70 pounds if you lift them at the same time?

Well, they do. And guess what else: no amount of Shakespeare prepares you for such a thing.

Apparently 70 pounds is the average weight of a blue whale. Who knew?

Lifting blue whales can't be good for your back.
Lifting blue whales can't be good for your back.

Anyway, I tried. I pushed them up, my body twisting all sideways on only the second rep, and I looked like I was having an aneurism in my face. I know, because I looked into the mirror and saw it. Wow. Turnip purple. So attractive. Mortified, I let them fall to the rubber mat.

They didn’t even make a shockingly loud sound when they hit. The one time it can be irritating that no one notices you at the gym is when you drop weights to the floor. When the big barbarian guys drop weights, even on those thick rubber mats, it still sounds like two busses collided at full speed. The whole floor shakes. Everyone looks up, startled by impact of those meteoric barbells hitting the ground: CRASH! Oh shit, think the plebes, an airplane just smashed through the wall… or a comet… we’re all going to die! It’s a reflex. An instinct. Everyone does it; it can’t be helped when something that huge falls nearby. Everyone looks around, blinking for that half second after the sound, processing. Then, they realize, slowly… What? What’s that? Oh, Conan dropped a barbell. Oh. Okay. Whew!

And gym normality returns.

So I sat there—yes, I was sitting on a bench, not standing doing my exercise like the barbarians do. I looked into the mirror, into the window of shame, and studied my shoulders compared to the barbarians to my left. I am fairly sure I would need seven or eight of my shoulders to fill up the same quantity of space one of theirs did. Probably more. You’d have to make a bunch of clones of me, cut off the crepe-like shoulder meat (personally, I think it should be considered a delicacy, like veal or something), and then slap it in a pasty pile, patting it wetly together like clay or something.

Bleh.

Fine. Why defy the forces of gravity with shoulder presses anyway? It’s absurd, I conclude, using my educated mind to fathom the physics of my universe with an alacrity no barbarian could ever postulate.

My lucky wife!
My lucky wife!

I’ll do biceps, instead. Bicep curls are just as important as shoulder presses, and chicks like big biceps anyway. I’ll just get me some guns with these dumbbells instead. Big old rocks. I’ll go home and flex, and my wife will just go off right there in her clothes, probably fall to the ground writhing around screaming in a big orgasmic fit.

I could hear the kids grossing out in my mind as I thought about it. “Ewwwww,” and, “OMG!” they would scream, their faces contorting with revulsion at the very thought of a parent having physical ecstasy. Hah. Maybe I could get a tattoo on the way home and really drive her nuts. The kids would puke.

How fun!

Even at this sad weight, the third set was agony on the left side.
Even at this sad weight, the third set was agony on the left side.

Turns out my right arm was sort-of fine, but my left arm had a seizure and crapped itself on the second one. Yeah, the second one. And the first one wasn’t really anything to look at either. An expert probably would have called both pretty sad.

How the hell are you supposed to lift weights if you can’t actually lift any of the weights they have in there to lift? Hmmm? Maybe someone should tell the managers of that gym. 35 lbs. is stupid. It's not even a pretty number to say aloud. F---- 35 lbs.

Anyway, 17.5 pounds was the magic number. That was it. Seventeen and a half. Pretty damn sad. I had to go with those in the end because apparently my left arm couldn’t even qualify for a third-grade shot put team.

In my own defense, I could actually do 20 pounds and even 25, but not enough times to count for three sets of anything resembling the text-book minimum quantity of eight good reps (yes, I read before I went—isn’t irony fun?).

So, that’s how I began. Pretty sad. But I was dedicated, and I swore to stick to it this time, unlike the other times I said that and failed throughout the years.

So anyway, a couple of weeks went by like that, me going to the gym. Me sitting like a big load on the bench there in front of that colossal wall of mirrors, that reflective judgment that shows you how meager and weak an actor you are in the context of a world stage filled with Brad Pitts, Hugh Jackmans and Vin Diesels.

Where are Falstaff and Sir Toby when I need them?!

But, alas, I will not lament those guys. I at least like Brad Pitt, Hugh Jackman and Vin Diesel They entertain me. But not … him. Not Mr. F-ing Perfect (described at the beginning of this long prosaic enterprise). I can live with Pitt and Jackman and Diesel. For one thing, they get paid to be perfect. For another, they aren’t real. Brad Pitt wasn’t really Achilles; he didn’t actually conquer Troy, and he didn’t even exist in fight club. Hugh Jackman is not actually Wolverine, and he never killed any vampires in Von Helsing—which means he probably never tapped Kate Beckinsale either. Nor did Vin Diesel really fight fifty-thousand aliens in the total darkness with nothing but a knife and his reflexes, nor did he actually conquer the whole race of Necromongers by himself. I doubt he drives that well.

But Mr. Perfect does all of that. Every last bit. He probably did it all just yesterday. Before breakfast. Will go again tomorrow, too.

I’m serious. This guy is real, and he really is just like I described. Six-five. Perfect hair, gray in that dreamy, worldly way, and cut flat-top style like a Marine. He’s got Marine muscles too, all sinewy and corded, with long veins running down his forearms. Big round shoulders like someone buried bowling balls under his skin. Abs right out of any of those miracle fitness machine commercials on TV, the ones you can get for three easy payments of only $29.95. He’s got those abs. And he’s even got a stupid dimple on his chin.

He’s perfect. So I hated him.

I didn’t actually notice him my first time in there. I kind of caught glimpses of him as weeks passed. I’d sit panting after a fight-club match with my 17.5-ers, sit sweating, wheezing, waiting for the screaming fit in my sissy-girl arms to subside, and, in the window of shame, see the reflection of him coming in to be absorbed in the subtle worship of those who are only alpha-males until he arrives.

And it really is just like that too. You can’t help but see it if you are the least bit of an observer of humanity. And I am. It’s what I do. So I watch. I absorb, contemplate.

There’s a gaggle of them. Firemen, cops, a ranger (yes, a real Army ranger—I know because I listened to him many times talking about jumping out of this helicopter or that, etc. He is one.)

I’d listen to them talk when I was on that side of the gym: “Oh, I rappelled out of this Chinook yesterday,” one would say. “Oh, I did the 100 floors stair climb with all the other firemen for the 9/11 anniversary last time,” another would say. “Hah, hahahahahaha, so many were vomiting from exhaustion, but not me. I was just, like, eating Cheetos and carrying up huge sacks of gold bricks to donate to the orphans living on the top floor… blah blah.”

F---- those guys.

Sigh.

I know. Envy is an ugly thing.

Barbie weights are heavy too.
Barbie weights are heavy too.

So anyway, I was always over there with my little candy-ass weights—they should just paint every barbell under 20 pounds Barbie pink and be done with it—and I’d listen to that crap going on between them, absorbing it with my soft, doughy writer’s brain. And, as time went by, I became increasingly aware of Mr. Perfect. I saw that he was different than them. A cut above. Taller, obviously. More defined, if not necessarily the burliest—like he had enough sense to know when to stop building up mass. And he was older. Much older. At least a decade, more likely two. Sixty-something. Seriously. They were all late thirties or early forties like me. (Okay, mid forties. What are you going to do, card me?). So this guy was old. And still totally fit as hell. Ripped. He went over there to those giant weights, the stupid ones that are a joke, and he used them. Every time. And he didn’t drop them when he was done either. No plea for attention from this asshole. He just used them and put them back. What a dick.

He laughed with those other guys too. Hah hah, that joke you said is funny and I’m laughing with you because I’m so cool.

Bleh.

And he didn’t strut. He didn’t preen, or check himself out like the others do. I watched. Expectantly. Looking for that sign of weakness. His vanity. Ha, then I would know my hatred was justified.

Not him. None of that.

Just his muscles and perfect hair and easy laugh that they all deferred to, unknowingly submissive as they all became when he walked in—seen only by me, the watcher with the Barbie weights.

And so I hated him anyway. I was glad my wife never came into this place that she might accidently see us side by side.

I hated that I was being stupid like that.

I realized it, even marveled at it. I’m really not like that. And yet I caught myself doing it and traced the line of those feelings back to when I’d first started noticing him. I realized that, in a way, this environment was changing me, warping me into a hater. I am not a hater. I am not even all that insecure, at least, not so much more than anyone else, I guess. Who knows? But I did know that I had let petty jealousy and insecurity work on me, and for some un-reasonable reason, I had started harboring this hatred for this guy. I told myself it was stupid. Some kind of middle-aged stupidity response on my part. The guy was obviously nice. Why else would all those guys like him so much? He was perfectly fine, unassuming, just very handsome and big and kind-of-too-perfect for his age physically.

So, just as I was coming to terms with that, shaking off my stupid enviousness, I happened to see him coming into the gym one day just as I was leaving. He must have been running late.

He was wearing blue surgeon’s scrubs.

The chick at the counter greeted him, “Hey Doctor Blah-Blah.” And I was like, Dude! A doctor? Are you freaking serious?

Needless to say, my attempts to reconcile that guy’s awesomeness and my unjustifiable jealousy suffered a major setback that day. I became petty again, lost most of the ground I’d gained. I had to struggle to fight off ungracious emotions all over again.

But I did. Slowly. A few weeks passed, and I got it back together. Could watch him come in without feeling very small. I was solid again.

Then the stupid weather cleared.

Once again, I caught Mr. Perfect coming in late, as I was heading out and off to work.

He had a motorcycle helmet under his arm.

The Island of Pettiness
The Island of Pettiness

Well, I'm sure you won't be shocked to discover that I am no longer a member of a gym. And yes, I know it’s stupid. And yes, I recognize this as unspeakably unreasonable on my part. But you know what: F---- that guy. I’m fine with pettiness. Just this one time. I claim my right to it in the name of all humanity.

Plus, I really needed an excuse to quit. Wow, do I hate exercise. Hopefully that will be the last time I ever join a gym.

Thanks for listening.

If you are a book reader, consider buying my book:

Top 10 on Amazon for both Science Fiction and Fantasy, so if you like to read, at least check out the video trailer and see what you think.
Top 10 on Amazon for both Science Fiction and Fantasy, so if you like to read, at least check out the video trailer and see what you think. | Source

More by this Author


Comments 90 comments

Lynn S. Murphy 4 years ago

OMG. It was like a train wreck. I couldn't stop reading. There's always a few showoffs that just ruin it for the rest of us regular peeps. Loved it. Couldn't stop snorting.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

Hi, Oh thank you for the laughs! I am sitting here giggling away like a demented well, whatever! lol! absolutely hilarious, and the pictures, oh my God! that was the funniest thing I have read in ages, and the sad thing is that I can totally relate! I went to the gym the other week, and snuck in the side door only to see Amazons coming in. I felt like a lump of jello in a mold, so I snuck back out again, I never even went on the darn machines! lol! rated up for making me sit here in hysterics!


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Yes, Lynn, it was a trainwreck, a long, months long, wrecking of my personal train. lol. But I got better. :)

Hi Nell. Glad you found it. I feel you with the Amazons thing. I'm sure it's just the same for women. I see the little chicky-poohs walking around in their almost nothing, every male head in the joint following them as conspicuously travel back and forth. Probably worse for women because our culture is so focused on women having to be stick thin.


rebekahELLE profile image

rebekahELLE 4 years ago from Tampa Bay

I like to pick one hub to read before I get ready for bed. I chose yours because I knew it was going to be funny, laugh out loud with tears funny. I hate gyms. I used to belong to one, in fact I think I have one of those charter lifetime memberships.. I choose outdoors activities and walk and swim during the summer. My gawd, this was hilarious. I know I'm going to remember some of these lines and images and burst out laughing at work or lying in bed, or wherever. Thanks for a great read and good luck with your fitness goals. Forget Mr. Perfect.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

LOL, after the six-month bout of foolishness that was my gym membership, I have resumed my previous fitness goals which include keeping my finger skin healthy and smooth by not opening beer bottles without the aid of an opener or at least the hem of my t-shirt and, uh... I don't think there are any other parts to it.

Thanks for reading. Glad you had a few laughs. :)


Rochelle Frank profile image

Rochelle Frank 4 years ago from California Gold Country

If you had time to write a hub this long, it makes me wonder how much time you really spent at the gym. I guess you must have quit some time ago. Anyway I'm glad you got a chance to meet my husband, though he's really 70.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Well, you have the truth of it on that first part, Rochelle. See, I freed my body so my mind could have the liberty to mock it in its leisure.

Oh, and, well, congratulations on that fine specimen of a man you married. I still having nothing but a giant F-BOMB for him in my rotting, envious heart, but I am happy you have such personal joy when poolside and, uh, elsewhere. :D


lifelovemystery profile image

lifelovemystery 4 years ago from Houston, TX

*snort* *chuckle* *LAUGH OUT LOUD* This is so funny! Cheers!


Cagsil profile image

Cagsil 4 years ago from USA or America

Mr. Shadesbreath, that was too funny! I laughed so hard I cried. LOL! Thank you for sharing your experience. I'm willing to say that it must have been quite an experience. I can relate. ;)


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Lifelovemystery, :D. Thanks, glad you got some laughs out of it. It's that or cry, right?

Hey Cags, always good to see you! And, well, it was what it was, as they say. I just had to accept that, whatever it is that motivates people to work that hard (genetic advantages notwithstanding), I just don't have it. So, why fight it? Let the salmon swim upstream. Beer pours with gravity. That's my stance and I'm sticking too it.


Underwater Jones 4 years ago

I think you should accept your mancrush on this guy, and go back to the gym and impress him with your willingness to perservere and overcome your "portliness"


Shanna11 profile image

Shanna11 4 years ago from Utah

I would have found this humorous, except it struck too close to home on my part.

I just got done with a Jillian Michaels twenty minute long workout, and ten minutes in, I was begging my roommate to leave the room. She gladly left, but it might have been the fact that she's a puritanical Mormon and swear words were frothing at the corners of my mouth.

I used to play lacrosse and I was in great shape in high school, but then I left for college and discovered the bliss that is simply defined as a meal plan (it's like endless, magical money) and stopped working out. I'm too terrified to even go to the gym now, so kudos to you for braving the world of perfect people with perfect lives! Maybe one day I'll get to the gym.... I have to be able to fit through my bedroom door first though...


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Mr. Jones, I will be the first to confess a mancrush if I get one. I proudly proclaim the one I have for Bulywif in the move The 13th Warrior, and I felt the same way watching Chris Webber play forward for the Kings back when we used to be able to afford to go to games..., so, my masculinity is secure in my ability to appreciate male awesomeness. However, this person is simply irritating because he is actual in a non-professional, non-movie way, and, therefore, there can be no crush. Only hate.

Shanna11, DON'T DO IT. It's an evil trap. You'll never belong to a gym and go every day or anything approaching your whole life. The very concept is a corporate exploitation of our need to look good COMBINED with our inability to do so long term. If you don't believe me, join a gym and then try to quit. See how elaborate (and well-scripted) their phone conversations are before they let you out.

It's evil, I tell you. I risk a rant on our food supply and other stuff, but I shall not go there. You have to find something you actually enjoy if you are going to be fit. Or find some kind of food discipline despite how the how vast complex of cheap calories and gym memberships conspires against you.


Shanna11 profile image

Shanna11 4 years ago from Utah

You make it sound so hopeless... my only choice seems to be to die fat with the fleeting happiness brought on by mini doughnuts and microwavable pizzas...


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Mmmm, mini donuts. I used to think the powdered ones were covered with powdered sugar. lol. Sometimes it's so funny to look back on how naive we are when we are young.


Shanna11 profile image

Shanna11 4 years ago from Utah

.....Wait... what? They're not covered in powdered sugar? What the hell are they covered with then? Omg... my whole life is a lie right now.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 4 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

Drawings aren't proof of a gym membership, funny though they are. I need actual photographs taken by Margaret Bourke-White before I will actually believe you have stepped foot in a smelly den of muscle dominated areas.

My philosophy: Eat right, Exercise, Die anyway.

Fun hub, funny drawings, I will have one heck of a dream tonight. Seriously? You forgot to tell how the marble cake and double chocolate mocha latte was after your "workout".


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Shannna, the truth will set you free!

Austinstar, I would have clubbed anyone who tried to take my photograph to death with my 17.5 lbs Barbie weight--no matter how many times I had to hit them to actually do damage.

As for the "die anyway" thing... exactly. I know of as many health nuts that kicked the bucket early as I know really ancient drinkers and smokers. Everyone is lying on either side of the debate, the data is too broad and general, and they all just want to make money.

And the cake and mocha was freaking awesome.


onlooker 4 years ago

Funny, interesting and voted up, thanks! You should've started by walking in the park =) I can understand how stereotypical people can get and with that our minds starts playing and thinking all sorts.

The sketches, I loved them!^___^


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Yes, Onlooker. The walking in the park thing starts to speak to the idea of doing something you might actually enjoy. (Personally, I don't have anyplace I'd like to walk handy, or I might consider it). I wish there were an easily available volleyball league for old, jacked up, totally-out-of-shape ex volleyball players that went year round and was really close to my house. THEN I would exercise. If golf was free, I'd exercise then too if it was close. Both points prove the problem.

Thanks for reading, voting up and letting me know!


Mark Knowles profile image

Mark Knowles 4 years ago

LAWL! Dude! I totally wanna be weak and fat now. Thanks a bundle....... lol


drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

My heart goes out to you, John, since you learned that Mr. Perfect really IS Mr. Perfect. The rest of me is jiggling with laughter as I recall the manic description of your gym (?) activity. You ARE a funny guy. And so voted with an up, too.


Austinstar profile image

Austinstar 4 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

Hysterical tags! I should remember to read those first.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Yes, Mark, I understand. The ease and grace with which I make this physique work is the envy of every man.

Drbj, thanks for the vote up. And that really was too. I guess some people just win the genetic lottery. lol. Glad you laughed.

Yep, Austinstar, I try to make those part of the fun. Sometimes they line up better than others. This time they lined up perfectly, so the order works. At least these vaguely resemble the topic. Sometimes I wonder if I'm gonna get yelled at by the vice principal of HP for how irrelevant they are on other hubs. :D


spryte profile image

spryte 4 years ago from Arizona, USA

It could have been worse...

You might have keeled over in the gym and Doctor Perfect might have had to save your life...then what???


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Ouch. Wow. How cruel a fate would that have been? The ultimate defeat.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 4 years ago from UK

Shadesbreath, this is God and I have never hated you. That is, never, until you gave me a hernia from laughter with your pink Barbie dumbbells. How could you? As a result, I condemn you to imitate Falstaff , who ‘larded the lean earth as he walked along’ for ever henceforth. That should teach you.

What a great talent you have Young Man :-)


Mark Knowles profile image

Mark Knowles 4 years ago

You do do fat and weak very well. Still - I learned a lot. I never knew they made dumbbells that small............


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

LOL, De Greek. A lardin' I will go! Glad you stopped by. I figured you would get a kick out of this one.

And yes, Mr. Knowles, they do make them that small. In fact, they actually go all the way down to 1 lbs, most in 2.5 lbs increments. 17.5, 15, 12.5, 10, 5, 2.5, and 1. So, as you can see, I was much more powerful than the 6 grades of weaklings who use THOSE pathetic weights. All things being relative. In fact, I'm sure there were many people there, obviously beneath my notice, who used THOSE weights and then saw me using the 17.5ers and burned inside with jealousy and hate too. Alas, tis the burden of great men like myself to bear such burdens in the name of manhood. Etc.


Mark Knowles profile image

Mark Knowles 4 years ago

lol - I am with you. there is always some one stronger/faster/better. Even Mr Perfect will run into the 25 year old version of himself..


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

That's true. The Law of the West!


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Excellent hub Shades, and well up to your usual standard. I am skinny as a rake, yet made the tragic mistake of joining a gym in order to 'get fitter'. I nearly died from lack of oxygen, and after two sessions I mysteriously 'vanished' and never returned. Gyms are at best torture, and I doubt I will ever set foot in one again :)


Anamika S profile image

Anamika S 4 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

That was a fun Hub! Love your pictures too! Voted up and shared.


AEvans profile image

AEvans 4 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

You had me laughing so hard I spit out my Apple Juice! Nice! lololo I like exercise but now when I go I will be thinking of your story and will be observant of my surroundings. lololo! Shared!


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

See, Misty, that's what you get for going to a gym skinny. They say, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." You tried to fix it. So, next time you won't mess with the good fortunes that made you thin.

Anamika S, Thanks for reading, voting and sharing. Very kind of you. :)

AEvans, terribly sorry about that apple juice (not really, but it is very nice of me to say, don't you think?). And yes, do have fun watching the barbarians and listening to the thunder of their falling weights. It's also fun to watch all the male heads turn back and forth in unison as the super hotties parade back and forth, especially the ones really doing it on purpose conspicuously.


KimberlyLake profile image

KimberlyLake 4 years ago from California

I laughed the whole way through. Thanks. Voted up and shared.


Cosmic Bus profile image

Cosmic Bus 4 years ago from Maryland

Shadesbreath, I am quite sure I met the female counterpart to Dr. Perfect while I was out shopping for clothes, every size 4 this 5 ft 8 ( an Amazon compared to my 5'2) tried on was a perfect fit along with her shiny, long, brown hair and beautiful, sun kissed glistening skin. She was heading for her mani pedi and massage before picking up her 2.5 children from school and then meeting her David Beckham look alike husband for a romantic dinner while her nanny put the children to bed!

Very funny, honesty usually is! Voted up!


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

I know THAT guy! He works out in gyms here too! I hate him too:) lmao!

Very, very funny! I often wonder if those guys that work out all the time - feel as if they are lacking somewhere else! Like those big muscles really take your attention off the imperfections!

I'd never go to a gym - heard it's one of those healthy things to do..Ew!


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

KimberlyLake, I appreciate the vote and share, and I'm glad you laughed. As a writer too, you know it's nice to hear that your efforts are working as hoped. So thanks.

Cosmic Bus: Don't people liek that just irk the crap out of you. All you can do is hope their kids grow up normal so there isn't a whole family of Johnny Envyseeds going around spreading envy everywhere. Bleh!

RealHousewife: I know, right? I mean there's hot and fun to look at, and then there is WTF, do you ever leave this place? The real stinger is when you find out they DO leave to go be doctors and ride motorcycles all day. Then you just want to cry. lol.


Cardisa profile image

Cardisa 4 years ago from Jamaica

I don't think you wanted to go to the gym in the first place...lol. You could have used that hatred in a positive way...like preparing your mind to become just like him or better. You could have told yourself that if he can train to look that good you can do it too.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Cardisa, you are always such a sweet positive person. I appreciate that, but no, I don't think I could ever have the desire for physical perfection fill me to the extent required for that. Some people are genetically predisposed to that kind of physicality, others are not.

Sure, if I wanted to completely change everything about my life, all my habits, all my outlooks; come up with a whole new dietary regimen; fight through the years and years it would take to slowly acquire the taste for bland, boring food and microscopic portions; endure the unending cravings brought on by the release of hormones that empty fat cells release (and always release forever because they don't go away... they just pummel the brain with chemical messages that say, "We've got empty cells down here, trigger the eat more, eat more, emergency response and make cravings"... this is science fact, sadly); and, on top of all the discipline and misery those things would entail, I would also have to dedicate myself to minimum of 2 hours, 7 days a week, but more likely 4 hours a day of rigorous exercise. Yes, I could do that, and from that, perhaps, I could over a period of years finally start to that good too.

I just don't see me wanting it bad enough for that. LOL. My ancestry is Nordic. My people evolved in places where winter lasted for most of the year and calories were scarce. My physiology is one that conserves calories with maximum efficiency, and, well, I'm not fighting against hundreds of thousands of years of evolution just because Men's Health magazine has some dude with washboards abs tempting me to. :D


gwendymom profile image

gwendymom 4 years ago from Oklahoma

You never fail at making me laugh Shades. Love it love it love it! I've been thinking about joining the gym myself here lately, but crap that's probably not gonna happen.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

HEY I REMEMBER YOU!

lol. Been a long time since I got a Gwendymom comment. How fun. And yeah, don't join the gym. You'll either end up quitting and feeling bad about yourself or turning into a fitness douche that nobody else can stand being around. Don't get sucked into the machine! They just want your money anyway. :D


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Way to go, where you been Gwendymom, and what's the excuse?? You had better show your face more often or Shades, Spryte, Christoph and Me are all coming to get ya' lol


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Yep, bringing on the beatdown! Nothing says "terrifying!" like threats of violence from a bunch of writers.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Well I'm not sure you should be jealous at all - there has been a huge ring busted here at the local gym for - steroids!! I'm not kidding you - they have arrested a whole ring of personal trainers here in my city! Lol lol. Now you know why they are so buff! Ha!

I'm sorry I know I should be appalled and all that - but I am a bit amused!


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

LOL, good point Shades :)


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Yeah, RHW, they're like chickens and turkeys in those farms where they inject them with stuff to grow them freakish looking before we eat them. lol. (Not sure Mr. Perfect uses that stuff though. Have no way of knowing TBH). But I know it's pretty common anymore. Can't find a cycling champion that's legit anymore. They just get good at dodging tests with the latest formulation that doesn't get picked up by the screens. It's a technology war.

Misty: I know, right? lol


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 4 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

BTW Shades, I mention your book in my latest hub and I link to it as well if you want to take a look.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

As my vanity could abide the least delay before hea


jponiato profile image

jponiato 4 years ago from Mid-Michigan

Very entertaining hub, and touches on several reasons I quietly let my own gym membership expire. Better it than me, which is how I felt whenever I tried to keep up with the 'regulars' there. Thanks for making me feel not quite so alone in my less-than-perfect (to say the least) condition.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Hi Jponiato. F--- those guys. Cheers to us. We have the luxury of not being consumed with our appearance, and therefore have ability to consume Taco Bell with immunity.


Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 4 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

I learned at an early age to avoid gyms. All sorts of dangers lurk within. You could give yourself a hernia lifting those pink barbels, pick up plantar warts or just plain knacker yourself. Glad common sense prevailed before anything struck you down!


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Gypsy Willow, while I will admit that hernias and even plantar warts are odious to contemplate, I have to admit that nothing quite frightens an old-school redneck fellow like myself as a plain knackering. Turns ones bowels to water just thinking about it. (I think). :D

Thanks for reading and leaving such a delightful comment.


Daisy Mariposa profile image

Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

Shadesbreath,

Thanks for brightening my evening. Having worked at both 24 Hour Fitness and LA Fitness, I appreciate the humor in your article.


Jewels profile image

Jewels 4 years ago from Australia

Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Thanks, Daisy. I'm glad you enjoyed the fun... of the article, obviously, as there is no fun to be had a gym, also obviously (at least in my opinion). :D


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

See, Jewels, told you it's funny. :D


Christoph Reilly profile image

Christoph Reilly 4 years ago from St. Louis

So true.


Brainy Bunny profile image

Brainy Bunny 4 years ago from Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania

Haaaaaaaa! You captured that guy so perfectly. Thanks for the laughs.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

It is, C.R. And thanks for popping in again. :)

Brainy Bunny: he's such a canned character in a way, lol. Sigh. I wish he could have at least been rude or something. hah hah.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Shadesbreath.....You are too damned funny. This is genius comedy.

I have had an intense hatred for the need to move my body in abnormal positions, at unsafe speeds, for as long as I can remember (which is as long as I've had 20 pounds of excess flab)

Being that food is one of my last few pleasures in life, I'm in fairly sad shape, aren't I?

However, I am not a quitter. I searched the book shelves until I found that book that what's her name wrote, about "Being Comfortable with Your Body." It is reqired reading, Dude.

A Gym Membership? Not on your life. Those are some sick people.

If I just read one of your hubs a day, I've covered my aerobics and ab-flexes. Thanks. Up & far too funny!


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Well fpherj48, I will be honest and tell you that I can never hear the word "genius" in the same breath with my name often enough, so, thank you for that. If someone else says it, that will two times its happened. Oh how my head will swell.

I'll have to look up what's her name and see what she has to say about being comfortable with your body. I'm really interested in what she can tell me about being comfortable with my body in an airplane seat. I may skip straight to that chapter first. :D

Thanks for reading and commenting. :)


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Let me save you some time and money. She says nothing about flights.....you're on your own, in an airplane.

Basically....we are suppose to make "peace" with the things we hate about our bodies. Having come from the flower child generation, I had no problem with that. I was never at war with my body in the first place...I just want a simple EXTREME MEAKEOVER.

We're advised to DRESS according to what our body dictates. This was easy too, since I was able to use my grandson's pup tent as a basic pattern.

We ALSO need to PLAY up our good points and attractive body parts. (I'm not touching this one.)no pun intended.

OK....this oughtta do it. Now go in peace, my son, and enjoy the wholesomeness and wonder of your body....be proud, be bold and know that you are beautiful...just the way you are. (Learn the words to Mr' Roger's Neighborhood song.) Very inspiring.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

I hear ya. My strong suit is humor, so since I am funny looking, my whole body plays off my strength. :)

I actually don't care all that much at all. You have to exaggerate to make something like this article funny. My wife loves me, and that's all I care about.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

and that IS all that matters!! Of course she loves you....you must make her laugh all the time! My husband and I laugh so much, we're surprised we haven't been carted away........yet.! You ARE a funny writer.


Motown2Chitown 4 years ago

I think gyms are nothing more than commercially acceptable torture chambers. I've done it six or seven times myself, always completely devoted to it....for about five or six months. Then I see someone that looks like Adrianna Lima or, worse, someone there to GAIN weight to fit into her wedding dress, and I go shopping for bear claws and razors with which to slit my fat wrists. My favorite day at the gym is always my last one.

This was priceless and hysterical - and so true!!


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Thanks, Fpherj48. And we do laugh a lot around here. :)

M2C, you could not be more completely correct. Torture chamber is the exact right term. WTF is wrong with those people? If they want, they could pay me 40 bucks a month and swing by on their way to work every day and I could just hit them in the face and send them on their way. It would take them less time, and the pain would last at least as long each day. Plus, they would still get the nice lumpy swelling they like, just around their eye and on their lip rather than biceps and thighs. But come on, swelling is swelling right? And in 1/100th of the time.


Motown2Chitown 4 years ago

Indeed! I'd be willing to grab a baseball bat and help out with swelling biceps and thighs as well. It would be like the premium membership they sell with the personal trainers.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

LOL, we could get rich:

M2C Shady's Gym: We'll Get You in Shape All Right.


Mark Ewbie profile image

Mark Ewbie 4 years ago from Euroland

Hmmm. You see I'm like a writer with the pink dumbbells and I just read this other writer, the guy that all the writers in the writing gym flock around - and I'm thinking F-that, I bet he's even got a book out and..

Seriously good Mr. Shadesbreath - absorbing and all those nice words. I know - long, but didn't seem long.

Sheesh. I bet this writer guy even knows how to leave great comments too. F-that.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

LOL, I just wanted you to come chuckle, because you make me chuckle, and, well, we're the only guys drawing and writing drivel. lol. (How's your traffic, btw, Panda 3.3 doesn't seem to like me.)


Mark Ewbie profile image

Mark Ewbie 4 years ago from Euroland

Hi Shades. I love the pink dumbbells and the whale especially. Panda 3.4 (we're on 4 now I think) does seem to like me a bit better, but it's only the boring pages - How To Do the Obvious for example.

That is our problem. How do you 'sell' invention when people are not searching for it?


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Even worse when Panda is big on "local" search stuff as I just read somewhere. So, what, people searching for humor are going to be directed to geographically "relevant" comedy? (sigh)

Thanks for coming by. I needed a fellow comedian to cry to.


a mild crazy 4 years ago

I dont mean to be a so called hater but yeah F!!!!!!! that guy. Since when do you earn the right to be a dick. Haha as Will Ferrel says "youve gotto flaunt it". Anyways i apologize for the language and randomness i just enjoyed the post.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

A Mild Crazy, I'm just glad you appreciate the essence of it all. It's not a perfect world we live in, and, well, we just have to find our own balance as we scoot along the ledge of our particular climb on Mount Eternity.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Thanks. That's what I keep telling the people at the Louvre, but they won't hang any of my stuff.


QudsiaP1 profile image

QudsiaP1 4 years ago

Shadesbreath you had me laughing like crazy! So crazy in fact that I woke my sleeping sister so she could re-read the hub with me. We were cracking with laughter and twice I almost rolled off the bed laughing!

Shadesbreath you are totally awesome!


Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 4 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

I'm a chick and not stick thin ( more like an old hen really). I've just joined a gym but am now wondering if it was a good idea. I can relate to this so much, I can't even "drive" these torture machines.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

OudsiaP1: I am very happy to know I kept a pair of sisters happy in bed, I can assure you. Thanks. :)

Gypsy Willow: Keep your perspective, be sure to check out the hot guys and think of them as subhuman sex toys while you are working out, so their opinions matter nothing to you. If a hot chick walks by and makes you feel bad, remember that in the mind of every guy in there, they are crawling all over her like maggots on a corpse, so she is really just a floozy in the collective imagination of the gym. That should set you right to feel good about yourself as a real and thinking human being. :)


Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 4 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

Thanks for the clues to positive thinking! I shall let chess men fall out of my gym bag at appropriate moments so that on lookers may see how cerebral I really am! ( PS I am worried I may transmogrify into a cougar if I see another buff young male, shameful isn't it.?)


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 4 years ago from California Author

Hey, you didn't ask for how your biology got hardwired; I say roll with it. And LOLOLOL @ the chess pieces falling out of your bag. That's brilliant.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 15 months ago from United States

Outstanding. I see why you won. The visuals of your struggles at the gym were hysterical. I loved it! Up, of course, and shared.


chateaudumer profile image

chateaudumer 15 months ago from Northern California and the Philippines

Congrats on your Win, You can used your HP shirt and mug while jugging to the gym. Funny and hilarious, indeed!


Ilona Elliott profile image

Ilona Elliott 15 months ago

You are not a wimpy girly man Shadesbreath, so don't fret. I'll bet your brain is full of big meaty manly muscle that ripples and undulates with every keystroke as you compose your witty, winning and colorful prose. Loved it.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 15 months ago from California Author

Ilona Eliott is clearly descendent from, like, Einstein and Shakespeare ... like Shakespeare's grand niece married Einstein's grandson and, BAM, the genius of our era, Ilona.

Just saying.


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 15 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Shades....I am breathless, no..not from exercise but all-consuming laughter. So nice to meet you. Humor is my #1 favorite of 5 things in life. That's it, just 5.

CONGRATULATIONS on your 2015 Hubbie Award for FUNNIEST Hub.

No doubt about it. I'm happy you won. Not only for you, but myself as well. It may have been a long time before I discovered the funniest guy on our site. Haven't laughed this wholeheartedly since "Thought Sandwiches" left me high & dry here. I missed him until today.

Yeah, that's the way a selfish bitch is. As long as I get MY fix, I don't care who does it. I have no loyalties. I just want to laugh.

Remember that please and keep turning out these fabulously FUNNY hubs. I believe I'll even FOLLOW you. ...you lucky man.

Peace, Paula (Sorry Thomas, but it was YOUR choice to leave me, you fool)


Ilona Elliott profile image

Ilona Elliott 15 months ago

Yes, I am....How intuitive of you to notice. Have you also noticed that the ladies, all of us, are breathless Shades. No doubt it's all part of your cunning plan to slay us with the beauty of your literary and artful compositions. Give us more...we must have more.


Shadesbreath profile image

Shadesbreath 15 months ago from California Author

I'll see what I can do, Ilona, given your lineage and all.

@ fpherj48, sorry to hear about old Thought Sandwiches leaving you with a few crumbs of memories, high and dry and all. Hopefully my hubs will leave you, uh, low and wet, I guess, if high and dry is what we are trying to avoid here. :D


Redelf 15 months ago

Congratulations on your award. This is truly and awesomely hysterical. I read it at work (on a break of course hahahohohehe) and had to actually leave the room and come back and finish it later, I was laughing that hard. Well done!

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working