Words, Weights, Whatever

Friday, June 10, 2005

***Gonna (cont.)***

What shall the first post be under this new guideline? As the song goes, “how about sex, baby?

Now before you go and click away, this is a PG post. I am a married man, remember? No, I’ll just be discussing how sexuality is appearing all over the place for me. (Now you can click to leave.)

I think it’s the workouts. I discovered a few years ago that intense and long-term physical activity heightens my awareness of the human body: a curve here, the toned muscle, the beauty of a face. Sometimes I’m amazed where my eyes roam: hands, feet, and even the style of hair.

Clothing makes a big difference. I discovered a while back that semi-formal clothing seems to accent features better than the more typical jeans and t-shirts. (That is, unless the vision of beauty is exceptionally well-endowed.) Slacks, especially, highlight one’s firmness of buttocks (or lack of). And a silk (or facsimile) shirt? Heavenly on an in-shape person.

The irony here is that my awareness of human beauty actually plummets, of all places, at the gym. I rarely look at the barely clad, sweating bodies. For me, it’s a matter of both attitude (I’m here to work out) and courtesy (i.e., it’s rude to stare.) Fortunately, the physical effects of one’s exertions remain hours after the last pump at the chest press. I read that one should do a full-body workout at least a couple of hours before a date to maximize one’s physical appeal.

I definitely know weather’s playing a factor in my increase awareness of beauty. As California’s rainy season fades away, folks are wearing less bulk and clothing themselves even less. This is very much apparent in the increasing amount of sun: I’ve seen a lot of beauty under near-skin tight white tops and even a few white shorts. As a species, we love the sun and I’m reveling in it.
Finally, my attitude is changing. I’ve always been a person who preferred the older set: the maturity, the security, and the adultness of older bodies that gawky teenie boppers—no matter how mature (hah!)—couldn’t match. But now that I’m in that older category (thirties), I’m seeing that attractiveness of dawning maturity (i.e., twenty plus year olds. I still think teenagers—physically--are too rough and unformed to be considered attractive.)

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the cliché goes. And I’m glad to open my eyes wide open.

(Image found on the Internet and all rights belong to its owners.)

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

***Gonna try something a little different here***

As you long-time readers know, I usually divide my post into three sections: Words (for my writing efforts); Weights (my fitness efforts); and Whatever (for, well, whatever else strikes my fancy to talk about at the time.) I originally created such artificial categories to help me focus on my (then) major interests when I created this blog. The divisions proved useful when I had three blogs. Even after I abandoned the other two, I maintained the three out of habit.

Now I wonder if the divisions have hurt my readership. When I check out a blog, for example, I usually only read the most recent entry. I presume many of y’all do the same. Since I usually start my post discussing my writing efforts (or lack of), I may lose those who are not interested in such topics. This is especially the case for those who like to read my daily activities which are usually found under the Whatever heading.

Thus, starting today, I’m discontinuing the artificial categories in the hopes that readership will pick up. I know it’s a hopeful wish: greater folks than yours truly have tried and failed, but what’s the purpose of a public diary if one doesn’t have readers.

So on that note…. (to be continued)

Monday, June 06, 2005

***The rest of the weekend***

Saturday the Spouse worked on work-related stuff while I worked on my latest work-in-progress. Sunday I visited my family (see Words below) for dinner while R. continued the work-related stuff. Pretty much an uneventful weekend.

***Tell me what you hate***

Every time I visit my sister’s family, I immediately think of my nephew, AJC. For a variety of reasons, he’s taken a liking to me. I don’t mind; he’s a likable teen once you get to know him once you get past his sullen, moody, “goth” persona. (Note to teens: no matter how much you think you know it all, you don’t.)

Unfortunately, that means I have to focus virtually all my attention on him at any family gathering. I barely have time to eat as he bombards me with questions or his latest attempt at a sarcastic commentary. And conversations with the rest of the adults at the table? Forget it.

But this Sunday proved to be decidingly different and interest. AJC and I wrote a book together over dinner.

I was discussing my latest writing project to the rest of the guests. AJC, sitting to my right, piped in and said, in his usual manner, that I should write a book about him. I turned to him and said, “sure. Tell me what you hate.” That threw him: I had thrown down the gauntlet and dared him to pick it up.

But he made me proud and did. He, after an adorable stammering and “uh, uh”, backtracked and tried to explain he didn’t hate anything. I twisted his answer, reminding him we were working on a character based on him. He paused to think, giving me the opportunity to get a bite of my meal.

“People,” he declared. “I hate people.”

“Okay,” I said, “but be more specific. Why do you hate people? Why does this character hate people?”

And on and on. By the end of dinner we had come up with a major character, supporting ones, the opening scene, several “candy bar” scenes in the middle, and a tentative ending. AJC even came up with the title, GoTI (obviously an acronym. Do you think I want you to steal this possible award-winning book?)

More importantly, though, I bonded more with AJC. I gained a lot of insight into his hopes and dreams and a better understanding as to why he did some of the things he did. (Nothing new though the reasons were incomprehensible since, for example, I’m not a religious person, thank the gods.) As I walked back to my car, I thought, damn. What a great session. And it was free!

***More men need not apply***

On Sunday morn, I attended a cardio (step) class at Bally Fitness. While this is not unusual (step aerobics is my workout of choice followed by weight training), I had not been to this particular facility and class for at least a year and a half. Yet when the instructor passed me, she immediately greeted me by name.

Few guys attend any aerobics class. And the few brave XY’s who do take a class (or even two) rarely stay longer than a month. I don’t fully understand why: there are usually twenty fit women in most of these classes, sometimes more. And the instructors…well, let’s just say some could easily be in Shape magazine.

I could continue to speculate the reasons (and may in a future post) but this entry’s about the advantage of being one of the few (and sometimes the only) guy in a class full of women over a long period of time:

  • All the instructors know me by name. So do most of my classmates.

    • The women share information about themselves more easily. This includes e-mail addresses.

      • The instructors tailor their classes to fit your level on occasion (and not always in a good way. I hate leg lifts!)

        • Your classmates will set up your matt, risers, and step when you’re running late.

          • I’ve been invited by instructors and classmates to go out to eat or attend parties. (I’ve declined them all.)

            • You find out where the best (and worse) instructors are.

              • You’re suddenly self-conscious about your dingy workout clothes and sneakers.

                • Many of your classmates can wipe your arse in endurance, forcing you to keep up. One of my instructors is over fifty and she can easily teach the 45 minute cardio class and follow with 30 minutes of weight-training. Ouch!

                  • You’re usually one of the tallest persons in the class.

                    • Women do look good without makeup.

                      • It is a myth that women sweat (usually).

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