I made it back to the gym. Upon seeing the local teenage boys swim team enter the locker room, the idea of swimming for better conditioning crossed my mind. I knew two things at this time; One, never in my life, even at their age, was I ever near as good a swimmer as the worst kid on their team, and Two, I knew if I didn’t hurry up, I would lag behind these guys and have to wait forever for the showers, and dressing space near the lockers. TOO LATE! I got to the showers and the “other half” of the team was already in there. It not like the boys don’t know how to shower fast, it’s just that when they get a chance to submerge themselves in water without the coach screaming at them to go faster, they get a little lackadaisical ….well, that, and they have to have a full-scale, 100% participation discussion on how to “get to the next level” in the latest video game they are all addicted to……if that’s not redundant.
I eventually got to an available shower, and with nobody to debate video game, “split screen control techniques” with, I was in and out rather quickly. Immediately heading back to the lockers, I turned the corner…..YIKES…too soon! The area now contained the entire swim team, and not making much progress. Half the kids were still in swim trunks yet to shower, and the other half showered but wrapped in towels and bare feet. I decided the only way to handle this was put my head down, blast through, dress, and get out ASAP! Good plan, but a little hard to do with ten boys standing around blocking the way, and so much gear and clothes spewed all over the place, it looked like the proverbial tornado that hit my room when I was young.
“Head down, hurry up, keep moving, don’t listen” I said to myself. There is no reason why I want to hear 14-year-old boys debating who, and why each Victoria’s Secret supermodel is the best. Abruptly, the conversation changed. I thought it was my presence; wrong! Suddenly I was listening to, and gauging the wisdom of the youth of America. Boy #1; “Hey, did you hear about the teacher at my school who got caught having an inappropriate conversation with a 16-year-old girl?” Boy’s chorus; “YEA, that’s so dumb!” Me thinking; excellent. The guys are aware of, and understand dangerous situations in life. Boy #1; “yea, he got suspended, and then had to go to court!” Boy’s chorus; “what a moron, what an idiot, what a jerk.” Me thinking; excellent! The boys know that their actions have consequences, so think before you act. Boy #1; “Yea, too make it worse, the idiot showed up in court wearing a Brett Favre, Green Bay Football jersey. Boy’s chorus; wild hysterical laughter, hoots and hollers. Me thinking; excellent “dress for success;” the boys understand you will literally be judged by the way you present yourself, and dress is important. Then they lowered the boom! Boy #2; “what an idiot; the guy hasn’t played in “like” five years!” Boy #3 “he should have worn a shirt from a recent player!” Boy #4; “he should have worn a shirt from a local team like the Patriots.” Boy#5; “maybe a player who retired last year, but not five years ago! “Boy’s chorus; More howling, wild hoots, and laughter.
I grabbed my gym bag and ran for the door!