To all of my aging sisters with resistant gray. . .
For those of you who don’t know me, the first thing you must know is that I am reluctant to grow older, resisting it every step of the way. Since I can’t actually grow younger like Benjamin Button, I have decided to fake it. And that, in and of itself, is hard work.
There’s the twice daily face cleansing and moisturizing ritual. There’s the parafin hand treatments and nightly lubricating of feet. And there’s the denying oneself of some of the most exquisite pleasures in life, the things that help you through the rough times, the delights that make getting up in the morning worthwhile: cream and bacon!
Having made my decision to fake being young, I had a consultation with a personal trainer. I went to the appointment with a handful of questions, the most important being:
- “Is it possible to keep cream and bacon in my diet and still attain a figure like Jennifer Aniston?” and
- “Can Ashley Judd play me in the movie of my life without first having to binge for months on cheesecake?”
Armed with my delusional questions, I headed to the gym. Let me tell you, these “fitness centers” have masterful marketing, but the staging within the facility is pure genius:
Staging Strategy #1: At the front desk are the cute, shapely young women. Young women that all women want to look like and all men want to be with. They are slender, perky, and very pretty greeters.
Staging Strategy #2: The trainers are muscular, handsome, young men. Young men that all men want to look like (or beat down) and women want to be with. They are tall and fit, of course; and they smell of cream soda. Mmm . . . cream. At least my personal trainer did.
To add to his mystique, my personal trainer goes by only initials: A.J. I’m guessing he’s Andre or Aubrey or Alexander–some name that is uncommon and masculine. He walked me through several exercises. Curiously, they all involved me needing to lean on his biceps for support, or hold his hands for leverage, and look into his big brown eyes to stay focused. I could have danced, uh . . . I mean “exercised” all night. And he marked me as a “10” on his consultation sheet–that is the highest rating possible . . . for “motivation to lose those pounds of ugly, bulging fat.”
We never actually got to my questions. I left expecting never to see A.J. again. I was under the impression he was a fictional super-hero that never leaves the holy grounds of the fitness center. He was a chiseled masterpiece come to life who would dissolve if he stepped outside the gym. I had finally figured out his name–Adonis.
I did see him again. And he saw me. I was shoving a powdered sugar donette into my mouth in the parking lot of 7-Eleven. I’m pretty sure he changed my rating after that.
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