Night Crawler

There are many unspoken rules in life. Don’t interrupt people when they’re talking. Don’t ask a women if she’s pregnant when you’re not sure. Always answer the question, “Does this make me look fat?” by saying no.

There are also certain rules of etiquette that people just know. Especially when it comes to the gym.

Pick up after yourself.

Wipe down the equipment.

Use ear buds when listening to music.

Don’t count your reps out loud.

Don’t be a loud breather.

Did I mention pick up after yourself?

To me that’s the easiest and most basic of them all. When you get something out, put it away. Weights. Mats. Your ego. Whatever.

The gym I go to is at work. It’s an awesome perk we have and I feel very lucky that I have a convenient and cheap place to get a workout in. It’s also nice that they teach fitness classes in our gym, have personal trainers available, and have all the latest equipment. I’m spoiled and really have nothing to complain about.

Well, maybe one thing.

I arrive at the gym every morning around 5:30 am. Lately there has been a lot of stuff lying around or left behind. Monday I came in and found this waiting for me in the locker room.

Someone’s wet and gross dirty towel lying on the table. Sadly, this isn’t the first time I’ve found something left behind on my, er, this table.

[Sidenote: I’ve been working out and showering here nearly every morning for the last 5 years. I always use this table. Everyone knows that’s my spot and they all stay clear of it in the mornings. Kind of a sign of respect. I’m a creature of habit that way. When I establish something that works for me, I want to keep it. If someone else sets up camp there it just throws me all off but more on that in a later post.]

Anyway, I head out to the gym and in to the fitness room to find this:

3 pieces of equipment left out on the floor of the room. Perhaps this person was so wiped out after their workout that they simply had no energy left to put away the box and Bosu ball. Or maybe they tried to jump on that tall box and fell, hurting themselves so bad that they just couldn’t clean up.

Let’s fast forward through the week. Here is what I found in the locker room on Tuesday.

Towel is still there and now with the addition of a pair of socks. There are 2 problems here.

1. There are smelly used socks on my, er, the table. Next to the spot where I will be getting dressed and ready.

2. The fact that the towel is still there means that the cleaning lady left it behind. Which then leads me to wonder what else she didn’t clean in there. Its not like this is someone’s personal towel from home and she didn’t want to disturb it. Its clearly a gym towel because it’s white and cheap.

Sticking with the locker room, here’s Wednesday.

Dirty towel on the table? Yup.

Smelly socks? Check.

Oh whats this? A new addition! A second towel and on the floor!!

Thursday:

A water bottle! Also, items are now starting to migrate to my, er, this side of the table. Not a good trend.

The towel has now moved to the bench. Was this the sloppy persons doing or the cleaning lady. And again I wonder, if the cleaning lady can move it here, why can’t she move it to the hamper?

Oh, and what’s this? A half empty (or is it half full?) glass of water on the counter.

And finally, Friday.

Everything’s back on my, uh, the table and still on my side. This is getting ridiculous.

The gym was no better. Here’s what I walked in to each day of the week. I found it like this…

And this.

Oh, and this.

Here’s another one.

After weeks of this nonsense we have given the person who leaves stuff out in the gym a nickname – The Night Crawler. Why? Because obviously this person works out at night. And only a wormy sort of person wouldn’t pick up after themselves.

Let’s take a minute to psychoanalyze this person. First of all I think Night Crawler and Sloppy Locker Room Lady (SLRL) are the same person. Looking at the size of the weights left out (15 lb. steel bell, 15 lb. dumbbells, a light barbell) Night Crawler is likely a woman (or a really weak dude….but I’m going with a chick). My guess is a single woman who has the time and availability to exercise at night. Probably a millennial who either still lives at home with her parents or has a really messy apartment. Also likely is that Night Crawler has never belonged to another gym because I doubt other gyms that are staffed 24×7 would put up with this nonsense.

Is it stereotyping too much to predict Night Crawler is named Ella or Madison or something like that?

So now what? I could write an aggressive note on the mirror (“Pick up your stuff!”). Put a nice sign up (“Please be considerate of others and put away all equipment.”). I could come up with a fun poem (“Roses are red, violets are blue. If you can get it out, you can put it away too!”). I actually thought about reaching out to security and asking them to check the security camera recordings.

Or I could just deal. I don’t deal well when it comes to others being rude and disrespectful. That’s one of my biggest pet peeves. But it’s also not worth losing my serenity over.

So, I’ll continue to ignore and get ready around the crap left in the locker room, and put away the equipment left out in the gym. And I’ll hope that Ella or Madison learns the unspoken rules of life and the gym.

Because if I should run in to her someday and ask if this outfit makes me look fat, she better say no.

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Not a Pleasure to Meet You

Yesterday afternoon I was sitting at my desk, trying not to fall asleep working hard and minding my own business when I got an Instant Message from one of our testers in Romania. I have worked with this gentleman before, like early last year, on a project and he was nice enough, though I couldn’t figure out why he would be pinging me now. He said that he was in Omaha for the week and would like to meet me while he was here. Oh how nice! I thought. I told him where to find me and he came right on over.

And spent the next 8 minutes (yes, I was counting) insulting me and explaining how awful Omaha is.

He started with the weather. It’s way too humid here, he said. And did I know that I had the choice to move? Why would anyone continue to live in a place like this.

Maybe because you don’t live here, I thought.

But in the practice of trying to show interest in him, I just smiled and agreed that yes it is hot and humid here, but we are used to it. He told me that in Europe, people move all the time. Don’t like a city? Just move! Then he asked if I had ever heard of Greece. Um, not only had I heard of it but I have actually been there. Fancy that! Us Nebraska hicks actually travel once in a while! He told me he could build a house on the coast of Greece for 20,000. Well hey, good for you buddy. Why don’t you go do that right now!

Then he went on to say that he’s been here for a week already and there is nothing to do here. Someone took him to Jazz on the Green, and that was cool, but that’s about all we have in Omaha.

I just stared at him and smiled.

He saw the picture that I have in my cube of me with the Olympian and asked if that was my sister. I told him, no, that is one of our Olympic athletes. This time he just stared. He mumbled something about how we must be so in to sports because there is nothing else to do here. I considered reminding him of the Romanian gymnastics teams and how seriously his country takes that sport but decided not to waste my breath.

I was quickly growing tired of his insults and pretending to be interested in his opinions. He pointed to a picture of CJ, Isabella and me and commented on having a family. Yes, my daughter is almost 2 and so much fun. How about you – do you have a family?

Oh no I’m too young to have a family! Well gee thanks. Now I suddenly feel like Granny Mae. He went on to explain that men should work hard and build up wealth, then buy a nice house before starting a family. His plan is to do just that and then marry a 20-something.

Didn’t realize I was talking to the Hugh Heffner of Romania.

By this time I’d had enough and told him I had to run to a meeting (which was actually true. The first time I was grateful to have a meeting). He thanked me for my time and left.

This morning I saw him in the cafeteria while I was getting breakfast. He was at a table across the room. I pretended not to see him and got the hell out of Dodge.

Sorry dude but this old lady has things to do. After all, it’s hard work to be ignorant and not realize I have options to move and instead suffer in the humidity because I have never heard of Greece.

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A Walk in the Park

I didn’t have much time in my schedule today to get out for lunch. However, I had to get out of the office. The sun was shining and I had a 2 hour call looming ahead of me. The only way to get through it was with a Diet Coke and some vitamin D. So I ran out for a quick sandwich (roast beef and cheddar on an asiago bagel with veggie cream cheese. YUMMERS!) and decided to eat it in the park. I ate in my car because it was a bit windy and I didn’t want my napkins and stuff blowing everywhere.

This was the view from my car.

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There was a group of ladies there wearing matching blue shirts that said VOLUNTEER on them. They were walking around picking up the trash. I wanted to tell them thank you but I didn’t. I thought it though.

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As soon as I finished my sandwich, I headed out for a quick walk. It’s a small park so the walk took me only about 15 min (with many stops to take pictures).

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There’s something very haunting to me about empty playground equipment. I actually did a whole series in college on it. One of my favorites.

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I came upon a lot of fallen limbs. We’ve had many days of rain and storms and the poor trees can’t take it anymore!

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The walk was nice and peaceful. The only people I ran in to were the volunteer litter ladies (hey they should get shirts that say THAT!). The sun was bright and it was warm but I enjoyed the fresh air.

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There’s a nice little creek that runs through this park. It was much more full than I’ve ever seen it, thanks in part to all those storms.

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There was also a lovely little bridge. It looked like it had recently been rebuilt because it was all bright and pristine. Almost too clean!

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Overall the park was great, though there were some signs of wear and tear.

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I was hot and sweaty by the end of my walk so the A/C felt amazing! I cranked it up baby! Then it was back to the office for meeting after meeting. I was ready to chill when I got home but Isabella wanted to go to the park so we loaded up the stroller and headed out!

She was looking sharp in her shades!

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She had a lot of fun on the teeter totter. When we got home, she asked me for some juice so that she could “stay hydrated.” That’s my Little Genius!

Now I’m off to paint my toenails with the new nail polish I bought today (OPI’s “It’s Totally Fort Worth It”) while watching Sex and the City 2. I know, I know. I’ve heard bad things too but hey, they’re my girls so I have to watch it. So what if I’m a couple years behind….I also plan to polish off a banana split made with Bunny Tracks ice cream. Huzzah!

Have a great weekend!

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Mable

$#*! My Coworkers Say

Girl’s Night

Mable

A co-worker and I were on a roll with a brainstorming session today and decided to continue over a power lunch at Paradise Bakery. What’s better than firing the neurons while eating a yummy chicken walnut sandwich, complete with a Diet Coke and chocolate chip cookie? Why, nothing!

We had a great work lunch and about 1:30 packed it in to head back to the office. We got all the way out to my car when K realized he’d left his notebook inside. I told him to run and grab it and I’d pull the car around. Which is just what I did.

When I got up to the front, I parked along the side and waited. I was watching a girl that was coming out because she had HUGE guns. No, not firearms, biceps. I mean this chick was buff! Was she an athlete or weight lifter? If an athlete, what kind. She was broad shouldered, like a swimmer but could also be a gymnast. These are the thoughts that were going through my mind when I first saw Mable.

Well, that’s what I’m calling her. I don’t really know this woman’s name but she looked like someone who could be a Mable. She was a tiny little old lady, with a cane, and she was hobbling toward my car. At first I thought she might walk right by, but then she turned around the front right corner and started to inch along the curb toward the passenger door. That’s when K came out. He caught up and got behind her.

Then we both realized she was trying to hitch a ride. I had the window all the way down so I said, “Ma’am, you have the wrong car.”

She didn’t seem to hear me.

She pulled on the handle and opened the door. K then said, “Um, excuse me, you are at the wrong car.”

From behind us I could hear a woman shouting, “MOM! THAT’S THE WRONG CAR!”

Mable had the door open by now and was starting to climb inside my car! She literally had one foot inside and was trying to hoist herself up. We continued to tell her she was in the wrong car. At one point she said, “Are we holding up that car behind us?” Um, no, that’s your car!

She got all the way inside and then turned to look at me, most likely to complain about the rude young man following her and telling her to get out, when she made eye contact. That’s when she realized I was not her daughter. Her eyes got all big and she said, “Oh my! This is the wrong car!”

Oh really? No way!

Her daughter had run up to my car by that point and started to help her out. They both apologized profusely. K and I got a good laugh out of it. K said he was waiting for her to pull out a thing of MACE and spray me for trying to hijack her daughters vehicle.

All this just because K forgot his notebook.

 

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$#*! My Co-Workers Say

Contrary to popular belief, the Brit isn’t the only one around the office who’s funny!

I decided that today was going to be a celebration of my new full-time job (I haven’t really blogged about it but I accepted a full-time position at the company where I’d previously been consulting and officially started on Monday)! The gang were all invited to go out to lunch. It ended up being Bubbles, Bob, Barry and me (Brit couldn’t make it).  Here are a few lines uttered during lunch:

“I’m not going to ride in the trunk again Bubbles! Not when we have guests…” – Barry

“There is no engine in the world strong enough for a Vespa to pull me up a hill.” – Bob

“I couldn’t wait to have braces. I used to put paper clips on my teeth and pretend.” – Barry

“My back hurts. I think I sprained something eating all those cookies the other day.” – Barry

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