Friday, November 15, 2013

Tripper Tanya

I'm no gym rat. Sometimes, in fact, I'll go months without seeing the inside of a gym. Then, my ass starts jiggling during sex so I'll hit the gym for a few months until everything's nice and toned. Then I stop. For a couple months.

Then the ass jiggle during coitus starts again so back I go.

To understand how much of anathema it is for me to subject myself to gym culture, you also have to understand just how much I hate exercise, particularly the group variety; how much I hate crowds, particularly the preening kind. 

I hate all the mirrors. I hate the aggressive meatheads with the tree trunk necks flexing in front of said mirrors and I hate the ninety-pound basket cases furiously working off that lemon slice they sucked on for lunch. And I hate getting on an elliptical machine after someone's dripped a quart of sweat onto it and neglected to wipe it off after they finish.

I have absolutely no sense of coordination, either.

Subsequently, the only communal thing I like is spinning. Basically, you just pedal the shit out of a bike. That, I can manage.

That said, I hate when the spin instructors talk into their mikes the whole time, barking at you to check your cadence on your knee. I hate that you can't hear them anyway over the music and I hate it even more when you can. And for the most part, I hate the music they play in the classes. I'm all about populist iTunes Top 10 shit in group workouts but I've heard instructors play Creed and the Dixie Chicks. When that happens, I'm never quite sure if I'm about to have a heart attack from exertion or from rage.

Anyway, a few weeks ago, I was noticing the ass jiggle during sex.

I guess I should do something about that, I thought. I'll go to the gym tomorrow. Definitely.

Three weeks later, I'd yet to make it to the gym.

One Sunday, I was watching an elderly chimp doing karate on YouTube and eating Nacho flavored Bugles when I realized something.

God, I thought. I am a waste of space.

So I went to the gym. I got stoned first. But at least I went.

I like going to the gym stoned. It makes the aforementioned irritants easier to stomach.

When I got to the spin studio a muscled, late thirties-ish woman with grayish dreads was atop the instructor's bike.

"Howdy, partner," she called to me. "I'm Tanya! Hope you ate thin crust last night because right about now, it's time for deep dish."

Straight, this would have made absolutely no sense to me. Stoned, it made me burst into uncontrollable laughter.

"Haha," Tanya chortled in response to my wild donkey snorts.

The people in the front row of the class looked bewildered. This made me laugh even harder.

"Hahaha," I chortled back.

You stoned too? she said with her look.

I sure am, I replied silently. Why else would I be here on a Sunday morning with Nacho-flavored Bugle crumbs still on my face?

I adjusted the handlebars and saddled up,

"Disorder" by Joy Division began playing.

Musically-speaking, it was an auspicious beginning.

I pedaled along enthusiastically.

"Don't let the German riders gain on you!" Tanya warned. "That's what they want!"

Several people looked up at her quizzically but no one said anything.

Next up, a song by MGMT that was years old, almost unlistenable from being overplayed and by spin instructor standards, pure gold.

"We're heading up that hill," she panted. "We're about to see that rainbow. That rainbow that comes after the storm. And maybe we'll stop for ice cream! Or I guess, make it low-fat sorbet, huh? They have marshmallow sorbet?"

Wow, this chick is fucked up, I thought happily. 

As we headed down the "hill," past the "rainbow," Teddy Bear by Elvis Presley began blaring from the speakers. It seemed a strange choice, after what had preceded it. 

But Tanya seemed to like it. A lot.

Because she started cackling incoherently into her mike.

And I suddenly realized that she wasn't just stoned. She was tripping.

"Hahaha," she giggled into her mike. "Woohoohoo. Hahahaha. Woohooohaha! That marshmallow sorbet's gonna taste good!"

Holy shit, I thought, struggling to control my breathing and my laughter. Is anyone else noticing this?

I looked around the room. The class was almost uniformly hunched over their bikes in concentration.

Nope. Not yet anyway.

"People said Elvis was a racist," she yelled over the music. "Well, I'm black and I'm saying no way. No freaking way!"

The girl next to me darted a look over at me but I ignored her. If I made eye contact, I knew I'd lose my shit.

"Wear a thin coat," Tanya panted. "Even only a windbreaker! In this weather, you'll lose twenty extra calories a day!"

As we hit a boardwalk ("Watch out for those roller skaters! Whoohooohahaha!"), Roll Over Beethoven by Chuck Berry began.

I wonder why she's playing this, I thought. Is it good to trip to, or something? Should I ask her after class?

"Hey!" Tanya hollered to the class. "Was Chuck the one who peed on the girl?"

No one answered. Many were, however, exchanging discomfited glances.

"Nah, it was R. Kelly," Tanya bellowed, answering her own question. "Let's double time now! Up that hill! And... down!"

We were now on a flat plateau.

"You guys like walnuts?" Tanya demanded. "I love 'em!"

I bent my head to my chest and tried to hide my face. I was almost convulsing with laughter.

"Wait, wasn't Chuck Berry the one who was into poop?" Tanya queried loudly.

Again, no answer. The entire class was pumping away at their bikes, faces tucked down, studiously avoiding eye contact with Tripper Tanya.

As we began jumps, though, I gave her a huge grin.

She grinned back.

And I realized suddenly that she was staring at my tits, like they were marshmallow sorbet or maybe walnuts even.

I laughed and pedaled faster. Who cared?

I owed her.

I hadn't laughed that hard in months.


Anonymous said...

Great post though it's a tossup what made me laugh more, that or the chimp video.

inger said...

this is fucking brilliant. right now, i am giving you a high five from all the way over here in Portland, OR.

J Adamthwaite said...

Personally, I've never even been brave enough to set foot in a gym... but that sounds like an adventure! It'd be great if you could hire people in that state as motivational coaches!

Anonymous said...

i want to go to this gym...

surge said...

What the fuck kind of playlist was that?! Holy hell, the Chuck Berry was almost too appropriate an ending to that story. I'm with anon on this one, I want to see this gym haha.

Anonymous said...

last friday night i had to take a loved one to an ER in the bronx. in the waiting area, i ended up having a really pleasant conversation with a rehabiliated ex-con who said he had stabbed 38 people while doing a 14-year bid in prison. i went to a party afterwards, told the story about a billion times and was a hit. i decided i needed more stories like that, which highlight the charming yet quirky of people of this great city. thank you, forksplit, for this little missive. you just gave me a great new story to appropriate as my own. keep em coming.

Anonymous said...

Why can't I find a class like this?! Thanks for making me laugh.

Hovercrafts said...

holy shit.

that's incredible.


Anonymous said...

Gallery of the Absurd?!?! Great site but I didn't see you as a celebrity gossip reader...unless you just check out the art

The Troll said...


Anonymous said...

YES! i love the silent communication, just like with the post-coitus waiter, which with this are two of the most AWESOME entries here.

Anonymous said...


sublime-ation said...

This is too good for just the internet. It's printed out and living in my kitchen, where it is thrust upon unsuspecting visitors.
The whole world/everyone who comes to my house must know the hilarity and brilliance of The Fork. Nice work.

sid said...

LOL! I love your that you're so kewl with her checking out your tits because she made you laugh. You are awesome.

Anonymous said...

And now here I am, also laughing out loud like a lunatic, as I stare at the screen and read your post. Thank you.

Also, anonymous, forksplit has said before that she dearly loves celeb gossip. So do I. It's a cheap delicious tawdry thrill, no matter how educated and jaded you are, you know? Like weed.

Post of the Week said...

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As this week's winner, we invite you to join in to next week's judging. Go here for details.

Again, many congratulations!

Anonymous said...

i think tanya might teach my yoga class

Anonymous said...

Quite frankly, you're a goddamn genius... you make me wish I could write like you. I've told you before, I'll tell you again... don't stop this penny ante shit, but PLEASE publish something you can get paid for!

Much love!

Anonymous said...

I've been reading your blog forever, never have commented though- no need - you say it all.
BUT I must scream something to you and the world.
I moved from NY to the Pacific North West.

Here is what I have to scream:
"Please help me dear god.
What the fuck was I thinking?"

It's not the crystal-meth families in Walmart (Mothers, Fathers & Sons),
It's not the gigantic terrifying volcano looming up that no one else is afraid of but me,
It's not the over friendly cashiers in the supermarkets who ask you how you are and then when you answer look away with a mixture of non-comprehension and embarrassment
nor is it my neighbor, a bison.
It is the full-on hideous loneliness that happens when you leave terribly lonely NY ( which you think is really lonely when you live there BUT this is my message- It's not

flourescent joe said...

hey forksplit.


greetings from chicago.

tokiwa said...

Hope you start posting again soon!
Or perhaps you are now busy working on your book which would be fab and worth waiting for!
I promise to buy and won't be buster by checking it out at the library.

"Stepmom" Steve said...


I just wanna make sure you're still alive and not dead and decomposing in some secret basement location.

...or maybe you went to Tahiti?

..Walla Walla, Washington?

...The Moon?

Anonymous said...

you're never coming back, are you?

anonymouse said...

um. seriously?

i don't want to wait any longer. i really hope you're just working on your book.

this is why anonymous is bad. we'll never know if you were killed in a crane accident.

i'm sad. i miss you. i miss your posts.

Anonymous said...

It really is kind of fucked up, how we get all attached to our favorite bloggers, like we KNOW them or something... but we do, and, first, when we don't see anything new posted, we get slightly miffed; "huh. I wonder when the bitch is gonna post again?" Then, some weeks pass, and still nothing, so you hit the archives, cuz even if you've read it before, the shit holds up. A few months pass, nothing new, and you start to wonder, "Is the crazy bitch dead?" Where the fuck is she? I miss her and her family! How are they? Is everyone okay? I want to see a new entry NOW!" And then you sheepishly move on to read another, much less talented/interesting blogger's drivel, sad, not only because she's not back, but also because you're kind of pathetic.

Anonymous said...

I really miss your posts! Please come back soon!!!!!