Monday, September 04, 2006

Riding High

Tonight, dear reader, I will be living your fantasy.

I hurry now to finish this post, knowing that you are the only thing standing between me and a private club that I recently joined.

The doorman will flash me a smile as I slip him my card. I’ll descend into the basement and past the kids who are already going at it. I’ll follow a corridor into the heart of the club and find myself surrounded by dozens of half-naked women. They will be readying themselves for the effort to come - adding jewelry and adjusting their complicated lingerie.

Welcome to the Club Med gym.

Cloob Med is the city’s largest chain of fitness centers, and the site of tonight’s continuing anthropology fieldwork. I observe as the natives try to adapt to this curious new technology.

Behold: the female approaches the Stair Master. She walks twice around, sniffing, and gingerly mounts it from behind. The hair is perfect, her makeup fresh. She climbs for fifteen minutes on level 2 without breaking a sweat. She remains the picture of perfect aloofness, even while a jewel-encrusted string (I am not making this up) carves a new trench in her backside.

What (really--I’m asking) is up with French women and their lingerie?

A recent study confirmed that they spend, on average, 20% of their clothing budget on lingerie – an estimated 2.6 billion euros per year.

I’m not knocking the general idea, mind you, but at the gym?

For my own part, I’ll be riding tonight in my sensible whites. For there’s nothing worse while working on cardio (and mentally rehearsing your next karaoke triumph) than the cold hard feel of rhinestone in your ass.

Or so I suspect…


Anonymous said...

Aieee... Your blog is revealing the dark underside of 21st-century Paris.

Silly me, I always thought rhinestones are for country music stage clothes!

Or is the return of Second Empire lite....

LA Frog said...

Hilarious post. And so true. When I was a member of the Gymnase Club, it always amazed me to see the girls in the changing rooms putting on make-up and jewels *before* hitting the gym. I was doing exactly the opposite, knowing that I would be sweating off my "4000 mille balles d'abonnement par an".

The main purpose of the gym seemed to be a "club de rencontres" (and it worked!)

When I moved to L.A., I joined the (in)famous gym where Schwarzie used to train. I eventually left because I didn't like the steroid-muscle, meat-factory feel, but people *actually* trained there, and hard. It was a true, wow revelation to the parisienne-me.

ps: not too sure about the rhino butt floss; sounds totally gross.

Anonymous said...

You are hilarious!

If I could afford a gym, I would join one too, because I'm dying to do some cardio again, it's been ages... But my wee little salary won't allow it for the moment!

So I try to fit in some bicycling on the weekend and some stretching at home -- when I'm motivated enough! (which unfortunately isn't very often)

I know what you mean about the lingeie obsession here, although I didn't realize they brought it to the gym -- because again, I've never been to one... I love the lingerie as well, but I couldn't imagine showing it to the world while sweating!

Lady K said...

Oh MY GAwDS! Really? How the hell do you clean that?!?

Gym access is included with my uni tuition. I'm looking forward to living in sweats, wearing birkenstocks and having the name of the university emblazoned across my ass.

I'm fashionable in Alberta. Really.

LeeAnn said...

Loved being a member of Club Med Gym back in the day (when it was still Gymnase...) and am crossing crossing crossing my fingers that my financial situation will change next month, allowing me to sign up. Wanna ski-machine together if I do? That would be weird.

I am astounded, simply SHOCKED, at the 20% figure you provided.