Message from John Carter

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

At the Gym

I had seen him at the gym many times in the past.  He was around five eight, broad-shouldered, with very short-cropped hair.  He had pale blue eyes and a sort of pug nose.  Typically, he dressed in an over-sized T shirt, but some days he arrived in a tank showing off his well-defined shoulders.  In many respects, he was just what I found attractive, although he was quite hairy, with hairy forearms and legs, and from what I could tell when he wore the tank, a hairy chest.

Initially we did not acknowledge each others' presence.  We would pass each other in the narrow hallway leading to the dressing room and barely make eye-contact, let alone speak.  But, as time passed, and we became accustomed to seeing each other, we smiled and said hello.

I work out in a part of the gym that is fairly secluded.  There are two areas with free weights - one below by the front door, and another at the back and up some stairs.  I always went to the back, mainly because it tended to have less people.  One warm June day, he showed up in my section, and we began working out side-by-side in front of the banks of mirrors. 

The first time this happened, we barely spoke.  But the second time, he put down his weights after a set, wiped his brow and stood there, watching me lift.  As I completed my set, and put down my weights, he smiled.  "You're looking good, man,"he said. 

I smiled back and mentioned that I thought he was looking pretty damned good too.  I was wearing an old baggy pair of gym shorts, a gray T shirt that said "Wrestling" across the front, and my wrestling shoes.  My typical gym attire.  He noticed and motioned to my shoes.

"What kind of shoes are those?"


"Really?  Do you wrestle?"

"Yeah," I nodded. 

"I don't really wrestle, but I do grapple," he said, apparently not realizing that grappling and wrestling were pretty much the same thing.

"Oh yeah?"  I turned toward him and asked where he grappled.  It turned out he was a member of a local MMA gym - one to which I also belonged - and he'd been taking lessons off and on for about two months.  He really liked it.  I told him that I was a member of that gym, and asked if he'd like to try working out together some time.  To make a long story short, he said he would and we agreed to meet up at the MMA gym the following night.

To be continued...

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