Okay, so I really shouldn’t complain.
After all, I’ve got a J-O-B, and it pays in actual M-O-N-E-Y that I can spend on lovely wonderful T-H-I-N-G-S. And also it allows me to swagger around a weight room all day, bumping fists and uttering such bro-tastic phrases as ‘what’s up, bud?’ or ‘hey brah, how’d that new tri workout go?’ to sweaty, muscley guys in revealingly clingy basketball shorts and tight tank tops.
And it’s gratifying having a title again, really. ‘I’m a promotional director and membership counselor for LA Fitness’ sounds an awful lot more impressive than ‘I’m a couch-surfing jobless slacker.’ I’ll take people thinking I’m a soulless high-pressure dick of a salesman and over-testosteroned gym monkey over an unemployed bum any day, thanks.
And you know, some parts of the job are fun. I get to go around local businesses chatting with all sorts of nice folks. Yesterday the nice lady at a flower shop I was trying to arrange cross-promotional opportunities with gave me a rose, and a cute guy at a mattress store jokingly suggested he’d try out my gym if I tried out his bed. I’m a people-person, so these little interactions make my day bright and sparkly.
There are downsides to the job, of course. There always are (well, except when I worked for Scott and Savona and the world knew bliss). I work for over-amped early-twenty-somethings who got to their management positions not by any management ability but by sales success, and I periodically have to make sweeps through the locker room, sauna, and steam room, where the only naked men are the ones who really shouldn’t be, ever. Seriously? If I run into Fred and his me-sized thighs in the nude again I might go straight. And then there’s the whole ‘you will close this deal, period’ mentality that’s drilled into us ad nauseum. Yeah, I’d love to take that guy’s money, but I’d much rather keep him on good terms with me so he comes back to me to sign a contract after checking out and finding other gyms substandard, rather than, you know, signing with the nice membership counselor down the street out of sheer spite (like we know anybody who’d do that…).
I can deal with all that, though. The thing I’m having a hard time stomaching is the whole friggin’ twenty-three hours I have to see boyfriend between Friday at 1pm, when he gets off work, and Saturday at 11am, when I go back. Our schedules are exactly opposed to each other. He works 6am to 1pm Mondays through Fridays, and I work 2pm to 10pm Mondays through Thursdays. I have Fridays off and he has weekends free, but I work enough hours both Saturday and Sunday to make the logistics of getting across town and spending any time together practically impossible.
It’s like the job was designed for people who are and always will be single. My general manager is 26, has no girlfriend, no boyfriend, and no dog or goldfish, and occasionally spends time with his parents here in town.
One of our head training coordinators, a totally ripped-up, model-faced 18-year-old grade-A capital-H hottie, occasionally makes vague references to a girlfriend, but…well, remember how Xander spent the first two episodes of Drawn Together telling anybody and everybody that he was on a neverending quest to save his girlfriend?? And then a couple episodes later he was getting Biblical with Elmer Fudd? Yeah….it’s like that.
Then there’s my weekend manager. He’s 22 and a recent college grad. He’s a guy with a dorky face and sticky-outy eary but a good enough body to totally land a babe but is nevertheless also perpetually single. Yesterday evening, he suggested my fellow new membership counselor, Andre, and I were welcome to come in early anytime we wanted. You know, since we could therefore earn more commissions and boost his bottom line. Andre – who is married, fifty, and has four kids – and I just mentally rolled our eyes. I have a feeling there might be a lot of that in the coming months (or weeks – please please please weeks?? Rio Salado Community College, are you listening????).
Stay tuned, folks…this ride might get bumpy. At this rate, I’d better hit up the lady at the flower shop more often…I have a feeling I’m gonna need to be bringing lots of flowers home to boyfriend.