No, I am not new here.

The days and times that I hit the gym vary a lot, so there really aren’t any people that I bump into regularly when I workout. But when I was at the gym this week I did recognize the “gentlemen” in question from previous visits.

Yesterday morning, I arrived at the gym and this guy comes up to me puffing his chest out and tried to begin a conversation with “You must be new.” The impression I got was he wanted to chat and was going to waste my precious bit of gym time. I walk to and from the gym. I only have a fixed amount of time in which to train before I have to get home and get ready for work. Every minute counts. Also this guy just gives me the creeps. I just don’t want to talk to him. So I responded with “No. I am not new here. I have a charter membership” and walked away. Mission “end conversation before it gets going” accomplished.

Today I decided I was very glad I did not encourage conversation yesterday because this guy was at the gym again. He did not bother trying to open conversation with me again (thank you!). The next lady who walked in however was not so lucky. She got an even better line I did. This guy decided a great way to open conversation with her was with “Hey, you have it good; young and beautiful.” (He said something else but I don’t really remember. I was too busy checking my ears for excess wax.) There was an awkward silence before the lady responded. I didn’t catch everything she said, but it sounded as though she was steering the conversation into more stranger appropriate small talk. I was wondering at the lady’s ability to move past this so smoothly until I saw later that she was in the gym’s personal trainer office (she was one of the new PTs). Regardless of what she may or may not have thought of this guys choice of conversation starter, as a gym employee she was stuck. She had to be professional and couldn’t be perceived as rude. Giving a deadend answer and walking away was not an option for her.

Personally I think this guy’s choice of conversation starters were atrocious. At least he was an equal opportunity offender. He also kept tying to make conversation with the one other guy in the weights area. (At least he was spared the bad pickup lines.) After a few interruptions this guy just started flat out ignoring the older man. He was wearing of head phones afterall. Head phones at the gym generally indicates that a person does not want to chat.

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