Latest Gym Crush

Diary Nov 08, 2011 No Comments

Today he said hi.  He was talking on his phone in the locker room, I walked by and he caught my eye and said hi.  I realize that sounds so juvenile, so junior high girlish.  Perhaps I should say “OMG he said hi.  OMG!!”

The gym crush is nothing new for me.  As long as I’ve been going to the gym, there has been the occasional gym crush.  A guy who I notice time and again, who initially attracts my attention because he’s cute and/or hot, then starts occupying my thoughts.  At its worst, I find myself planning to return to the gym at the same days and times I’ve seen him there before, hoping to glimpse him again and maybe talk to him.  Sometimes I’ll talk to him, sometimes not.  Fortunately, before it blows into full-scale stalking potential, the crush passes.  I still see the guy, still think he’s hot, but the intense feelings go away.  Thank goodness.

This latest crush is a little different, or at least odd.  Let me first provide the context of the gym I go to.

For the last couple of years I’d gone to a fancy new gym tucked away in an office park near where I work in Sunnyvale.  It was originally built to serve the tenants of a giant new office park and was not intended to be open to the public.  However the completion of the office park and the opening of its gym coincided with the depth of the recession, so there were no tenants for the offices and nobody to go to the gym.  So they opened the gym to the general public.  The gym was fantastic: a top quality facility with all the latest equipment, a giant lap pool, and a range of group classes.  I’d never been much for classes but started going to them here, and became hooked.  I also used the pool as much as I could, and noticed the more I swam the more toned my upper body became.  That last bit should be a “well, duh” but I hadn’t swam this much before so hadn’t appreciated what it could offer.  All of a sudden my biceps qualified as the “screw-on arms” variety, which was a first for me.

But then the announcement came.  With the rebound in the local economy, the office buildings were leasing up and the gym’s public memberships were being discontinued.  All “non-corporate” members would be dismissed by the end of the year.  Annoyed and also a bit saddened, I scoured the internet to find a new gym nearby.  The problem was, I’d become spoiled.  I’d become accustomed to the fancy digs, the big pool, the classes, the LEED-certified building, the towel service.  Shit.

Doing a Google search, the local picks looked pretty grim.  But then in one of those “sponsored ads” in the margin was a blurb about fitness in Palo Alto, and a link to the JCC.  As in Jewish Community Center.  I wasn’t Jewish, but could I join?  I’d heard that yes, other JCCs not only allowed open membership but encouraged it, positioning the JCC as part of the larger community.  I was familiar with the Palo Alto JCC complex and knew it shared many of the same qualities as my current gym.  It was a new facility, had a pool (or two), classes, and was reasonably close to my office.  I joined the next day.

So that’s a long bit of context to explain what is different about my latest gym crush.  The guy is handsome and has a great body, though I have not seen him with his clothes off.  But also, his hair has those spiral curl things hanging down that some devout Jewish people have.  I don’t know what they’re called, but there they are.  And he wears a little cap on his head.  Is that a yamaka?

Other than the hair and the headwear, he dresses like a typical gym-goer.  He wears a tank top and nicely fitting shorts, together showing off his worked out physique quite nicely.  When I first saw him I was intrigued by the juxtaposition, the gym bod with the religious stuff.  When I first started noticing him I didn’t know what to make of him.  I’m pretty much ignorant of all things religious, so only knew the guy I was looking at was intriguing and curiously sexy.

So yesterday in the locker room he says hi.  Hmmm.  Then, while I was working out with my trainer in the weight room he kept looking over.  Eventually he came over while I was doing dead lifts and asked the trainer why she had me using a reverse grip.  Hmmm.

Maybe he is just being friendly.  After all, I’ve now been going to the JCC for nearly two months, so I’m becoming a more familiar face.  He may just be a friendly guy who likes to make acquaintances.  Being socially inept for much of my life, I’ve never totally understood how “normal” people (especially guys) conduct themselves.  Alternatively, perhaps eventually I’ll be invited to some kind of religious thing, like those people at college who befriend you before inviting you to Bible study.  Or maybe he’s a rabbi or something and generally friendly in that community-leader sort of way, like Father Whatshisname from my parent’s church.

So not sure where this will be going, but like the other gym crushes I know the infatuation aspect will pass.  But for now, do I go back today at the same time and see if he’s there?

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Nate

Writer, performer, public speaker, wing guy, gym buddy, sympathetic ear, naked chef, and all-around good-natured exhibitionist. Say hello at nate@natebeck.us.

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