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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Saturday, April 19, 2014

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Your mother (probably) doesn't work here. Pick up after yourself.
Your mother (probably) doesn't work here. Pick up after yourself.

Are you a gym jerk?

Recently I was delving through the esoteric "Notes" feature of my Facebook page and reliving some of the more un-P.C. moments in my literary history when I found a rant I threw together on the subject of going to the gym.

The note itself is just under three years old and I've since switched gyms and logged countless more hours in the public workout arena, but I still found myself empathizing with 2009 me on so, so much.

I decided to repost it, new and improved – and edited for delicate eyes, of course.

Things that Tick Me Off at the Gym

1. When the workers vacuum between the machines while I'm on one. Every time they come through, I feel like I'm going to elbow them in the back of the head.

2. Also, workers who vacuum around me in the locker room. While I'm changing.

3. People who actively look around when they're exercising. Especially when I accidentally make eye contact while I'm facing forward and minding my own business and they look at me like I'm the weird one, because apparently it's normal to keep 360-degree visual tabs on the room.

4. That one guy who, rather than using one of the other 14 open machines, chooses to set up camp right next to me. I suspect this is also the "takes the urinal right next to yours" guy, but I can't prove this, for obvious reasons.

5. People who covertly (read: blatantly) sneak glances at my little machine computer stats screen. Yes, triathlete, I'm probably going slower than you. Enjoy your schadenfreude.

6. Women who wear little coordinated outfits, full makeup and jewelry. I wasn't aware Fashion Week had a line for the athletic and self-involved.

7. Guys who wear hats to work out. (This one is more mystifying than annoying.)

8. People who don't wipe down their machines.

9. The 10-16-year-olds who are unleashed to run amok and futz with the equipment like they're at the playground. And then don't wipe it down.

10. People who think the gym has magical hand weight elves who return them to the racks after their careless users leave them on the ground nearby. Same goes for towels, spray bottles and other assorted workout paraphernalia.

11. People who think deodorant is optional.

12. Naked ladies in the locker room. Just towel off, put on your clothes and leave. "Locker room" and "bath house" are not the same thing. (I've heard this goes double in the guys' locker room, but again, I haven't actually witnessed it – and in no way want to.)

13. Grunters.

I'm sure there are others, so feel free to share your own pet peeves. I'd love to commiserate with someone besides me-from-three-years-ago.

Talkbacks

jakkalope | April 13, 2012 at 9:23 a.m. (report)

35403 You'll never see me at a public gym. More disgusting than a public swimming pool. Buy a bench, some dumbbells and work out from home. Avoid the nasty people and their germs :)

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DowntownRed | April 13, 2012 at 8:39 a.m. (report)

I can't stand the guys who take 3-5 machines at one time. Or the people who get all huffy and stand next to the machine you're on, waiting for you to get off. There are 10 other chest machines you could use but for some reason you have to this particular one?

And yes, the prolonged nudity does happen more in the men's locker room but it's usually the older guys. For some reason they feel they have to be naked when they do everything in the locker room. Seeing some 60 year old blow drying his hair and Q-Tipping his ears while naked is not sexy.

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