“You done?” the gym employee asked, taking my locker key.
“Er, yes,” I mumbled.
“All right then. Have a good one!”
I stammered a reply and slunk, red-faced, from the gym. Just before the door closed, I heard him joking around with a couple of other male staff members.
I cringed, certain they were mocking me.
A week ago, you see, this young man saw me naked.
It happened while my sister was in town.
“Let’s take the kids swimming at the gym!” I had proposed.
So we corralled the little people and spent a leisurely couple of hours poolside. When it was time to go, we used the outside door to enter a hallway leading to the locker rooms.
A little scene-setting: When you come through that door, the entrance to the women’s locker room is straight ahead; the men’s to the right. To the left is a door leading to the indoor pool.
My sister, still in her bathing suit, stood in the hall, calling out instructions to my 6-year-old nephew, who was next door in the men’s locker room. I plopped my kids on a bench and took a quick shower. Then, wrapped in one of those teensy gym towels, I poked my head out into the hall to talk to my sister.
According to Sis, I actually stepped out into the hall. When I turned to re-enter the locker room, she couldn’t help but notice the towel covered nary an inch of my rather substantial rear.
And thus the gym employee leaving the indoor pool area saw way more of me than I’m sure he wanted to.
Between fits of laughter, my sister gasped, “You just turned around, and … well, he could see pretty much everything!”
Now I am not an especially modest person. I have two children. That means twice now entire crowds have gathered around my hoo-ha to discuss how things were going down there.
And, over the years, I have been known to lose undergarments in front of people. A half-slip slid to my ankles in a high school hallway. My thigh-highs (remember those?) slithered down to my ankles, flapping jauntily, as I fled the Dell building, where I was working as a college temp, during one particularly unfortunate lunch hour. When I returned, my co-workers, between fits of laughter, advised that I abandoned the thigh-highs pronto.
(Oh, to be thin enough that thigh highs won’t stay put. Sadly, I’m sure there’s no danger of that happening ever again.)
And, of course, there was the bra pad incident.
Back when Wonder Bras first hit the market, I bought a cheaper knockoff that had these removable pads inserted into each cup. The second day I proudly wore my new bra, I went to interview a police detective for a story.
As I was leaving, I heard him call out down the hallway:
“Hey, Cathy! Is this your shoulder pad?”
The pad was scarlet. My shirt was a purple and pink paisley number. We both knew that wasn’t a shoulder pad.
I snatched the pad from his large, calloused hand and tried to make a dignified exit.
I could still hear his howls of laughter as I left the building.
So, yeah, a gym employee has seen my dimpled derriere. Life will go on. I will continue to go to the gym.
Still, I think I’m going to start bringing my own towel.