My gym is just a block and half away. It’s in a basement. They tried to make it nice — and I suppose they succeeded — but it’s still in a basement. There are no windows. This bothered me at first, but now I don’t think about it.
I go nearly every morning. Most days this is the only time I leave the apartment, and the people I see at the gym are the only people I see aside from K and the occasional delivery person.
I rarely talk to anyone at the gym, but I notice everyone. I notice them and think about them and I often make up little stories about them. I do this anyway wherever I go, but the gym is ideal because I see the same people over time, the regulars. I enjoy the regulars. I’m a regular myself.
Sometimes I’ll spot a regular on the street, and if I’m with K, I’ll turn and say something like, “The woman in the blue dress is a regular. I told you about her. She wears sweatpants that say YALE across her butt.”
I tell K about the regulars as we eat our oatmeal each morning. I call these my gym stories. I have a new one each day. I believe K finds it both funny and disturbing that so much of my social life, such as it is, takes place at the gym, and that so little of it consists of any actual interaction with anyone.