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Friday, 18 May 2012

The Spectacle Scrote

I went swimming with my Beloved last night.

Readers of m'blog will realise what an absolute terrible sacrifice this is for me, as I really hate swimming in a public pool.  In the Winter..At night.

The cold air does some rather strange things to my physiology and I'm always a bit apprehensive about catching something nasty from the specimens of humanity in the changing rooms or the jacuzzi. (I wonder if Émile Zola composed his letter in a bubbling bath?  maybe that's how it got its name)

A hint, for those of a less literary bent.
However, we go to the pool.

One other reason I hate going swimming here is that I'm very short sighted.  My vision without my varifocals is, to say the least, blurry.

I don't actually bounce of walls, or walk into door frames, but I have been known to mistake my Beloved for someone else, which has led to some rather strange situations in the jacuzzi, but I won't go into that, anyway she didn't press charges.

So we did our traditional 40 lengths, me with my slightly cumbersome breast stroke, my Beloved doing her usual impersonation of an unguided (but very slow) torpedo.  She prefers to swim on her back and therefore cannot easily see what's ahead of her, so she quite often wanders off into a different lane or bounces her pretty little head of the white ceramic tiles at the end of the lane.

For some strange reason we usually have a lane to ourselves (and quite often the adjoining lanes as well) as we progress back and forth, like two bedraggled aquatic mice in a maze.  She unable to see, and me being able to see, but not really seeing.  It's all so bloody boring.  I've made enquiries into a waterproof iPod, but I'm not happy with the minimal guarantees. (If anyone out there personally knows of a really good waterproof MP3 player//iPod case and waterproof earbuds, please let me know).  Mind you I can often work out lesson plans or new blog posts during my aquatic perambulations, so it's not all wasted time.  Bugger the exercise, the boredom will kill me first.

Eventually the water torture was over and we headed to the jacuzzi.

I loath this immersion into the frothing people-soup almost as much as I hate the swimming itself.  Imagining with my razor-sharp, microbiology-trained intellect, the contents of the bubbling vat eating away at my exposed dermis is not a pleasant thought.  I wonder how many kilos of suspended and debraded skin cells they clean out of the filters (I hope to God they actually clean the filters) (I even more fervently hope to Dawkins that they have filters) plus the exuded squamous oils and fats,  It doesn't bear thinking about, but I can't stop the thoughts.  They go round and round like two gay hamsters in an exercise wheel.

At last, my Beloved (at least I think it's my Beloved, and it had better be, because the blurred and fuzzy vision who has been sitting next to me in the jacuzzi just grabbed a certain sensitive portion of my anatomy to signal we should get out.  If it's that 200 kilo Samoan (of uncertain gender) again, I'm going to complain to the staff.)

We walk over to the clothing storage boxes to get our clothes and belongings, intending next to head for the showers, and I can assure you that I use Dettol-based soap gel to at least try and kill off the organisms I know have now coated my skin.

My glasses.

Where the f*ck are my glasses?

I always tuck them under my clothes bag and I couldn't find them.

We never take valuables into the pool.

Things NOT to take to a public pool
I always leave my wallet, keys, loose change and my watch at home before we come to this Water-Based Torture Palace, and my beloved does the same, retaining only her car keys, which she wraps in her knickers.  Only a demented madman would interfere with her knickers, so they're probably safe.

But where the f*ck were my glasses?

I had bought them at Boots (a reputable chemist and optician for those form outside the UK)  in Dundee on our last visit to Scotland.  They were varifocals, with a Titanium frame and they costs lots.  About £450 all-in (NZ$900), and I needed them.

I searched, with a progressive panic, my clothes bag, inside my towel and wrapped-up clothes.



I stood there in the centre of my blurred and fuzzy universe and cursed.

Not really a good attitude for teachers, but WTF.
One other reason I hated going to this f*cking pool was the kids.  They let the little bastards into the pool about an hour after we arrived, for what they termed "Teen Time", so as we were finishing, swarms of the feral gits were running all over the place.

I couldn't see the sense in anyone taking my specs.  They were made to my prescription for f*ck's sake.  They wouldn't do for anyone else.  It was just pure mindless, idiotic, f*cking stupid vandalism.

I couldn't see  the point to this act at all.

I couldn't SEE.

Excuse me, is this the Male showers?
I made my way stumblingly to the male showers.  Being extra careful in reading the word MALES on the wall.  I wondered what other bathers thought if they saw this bloke, dripping water, with his face about 6 inches from the wall.

Eventually I got showered and changed and met my Beloved outside.   I'm sure it was her, because the blurry image that kissed me didn't smell like the Samoan.

I told her what had happened, in clear and succinct terms.

She too was shocked. 
"That's £450!" she said.

Too much dosh

My Beloved is nothing but sympathetic.  She was even sympathetic when I banged my toes on the kerb ( was wearing Jandals for ease of changing clothes).  I knew she was sympathetic; she didn't laugh.

Thank goodness she was driving.

The thought occurred to me that if I'd been there on my own, (A purely hypothetical situation. If my Beloved hadn't dragged me, sullen and resentful to this bloody place, I wouldn't be here) I couldn't have driven safely home.  If I'd tried, I would probably have ended up killing myself or another driver as I veered all over the road, trying to distinguish the sides of the traffic lanes.  I might even have driven onto the railway lines by mistake, or ended up in somebody's bedroom as I turned into their driveway, mistaking it for the main road.

Oops. What f*cking house?
After we got home, I found my spare pair of specs that I'd thoughtfully kept after I got my new ones, and headed for the drinks cabinet.

I really needed a restorative whisky.  A large restorative whisky.  Actually two, very large, restorative whiskies.

The Famous Restorative
My Beloved didn't object.

Of course she couldn't

It was all her bloody fault for dragging me to that f*cking place.

Well, her and the f*cking scrote, but I don't know who that was, so she'll have to take all the blame.

Yeah, right.

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  1. Lucky you had a spare set. I'm just about to go and get tested and new glasses after being advised to wait 6 months after dibetes diagnosis. Currently I've got 2 pairs and one of them is sunglasses. Mainly I use them for driving. Not the first time I've left the other pair at home and had to drive home at night wearing bloody sunglasses.

    I'm with you on the swimming - only in a private pool - never in a public one. I just hate it. We usually rent somewhere for holiday that's got a private pool. I like being able to stand in the cool water and enjoy a cold glass of something without being bumped or in the middle of screaming hoardes of kids. Nice not to have nubile young ladies swoonong all over at the sight of my physique as well of course - such a bore when that happens don't you find?

    1. Alistair, you're a man after my own heart.

      I've also got diabetes (watch the spelling please, I'm in report proof checking mode and cannot stop)and I am due another (free) eye test in a month.

      I didn't mention it, but the first pair of spare glasses I found were sunnies. Everything seemed so dark!

      Ahh...looking at the young ladies.

      It's banned you know.

      Seemingly by am intrnational consortium of female partners..

      You've really go to stop fantasising, it's never boring. Amazing, yes, but boring, never.

    2. Aye - sorry about the spelling. Dyslexic fingers you know.....

    3. Aye...I know the feeling. Generally a kind of numbness at the extremities...I think it might just be mediated by excess alcohol.

  2. Thats no good TSB! The Youth of this town are a disgrace. Well make an insurance claim won't you as spectacles are covered under contents insurance. My only two year old pari broke recenty while I was cleaning them and I got some nice new presecription ones worth $900 but only paying my $200 excess for them. Loss or theft would have been coverd also. I liek you luckily ahd kept my previous pair, just in case. I needed mine for driving. Can't imagine why anyonewould want to knick your specs from the public pools though. What one earth was the attraction on wonders. It must have been a kid as only a kid would be stupid enough to knick them - maybe a dare perhaps? Bad news if so.

    1. Yep, I'm almost sure it was a kid. May the bad ones all rot in hell. My insurance is OK, and it doesn't have an excess on spectacles. I'm just waiting for a copy of the original receipt (docket) being sent out here.

    2. Oh, BTW. YOU teach in Upper Hutt, dont you?

      I blame the teachers.

    3. o don't blame the teachers! Blame the people (if you can call themn that) that pro-created and conceived them in the first place!THere has been a noticable trend of riff raff living in our city in the last few years, maybe something to do with the increase in population at the local prison perhaps?
      Truth be told I ma appalled at hte behaviour of many of our yout. The amount of taggign around the town should tell you something is not healthy. Also their overall rudeness, especially to their teachers and elders in the community. I was saddened but not surprised to find out many of my students are living in single parent families and foster homes. Blame it on the break downon fo the family unit and decline society values. Kids from two parents (Still together) families are rare indeed nowdays. SO very sad. Some kids will do anything to get some attention, even if it is something bad. Oftne they jsut want a bit of recognition and in many cases really need some good love, care, healthy feeding and discipline to raise their health, self esteem and overall morals. Their own parents often just don't give a damn. These problems are happenning all over NZ, not just in our city.

    4. Why not blame the teachers? The government do it all the time.

  3. When the kids are in the pool it should be called Pee Time. I agree completely with you, it's a horrid, germ infested place. With Australia's hot temperatures they tend to over dose the pools here until your eyes sting and your nose runs from the Chlorine poisoning.

    1. Tempo, I want you to take a couple of tranquilizers or a large glass of he restorative , or both before you read any more.

      Many years ago, in a different life, and a different place (and besides, the wench is dead)I sold CO2. I was trying to sell it to swimming pools to adjust the pH of the water, so I had to do a lot of research before approaching this market.

      I found out that it isn't the chlorine in the pools which causes eye irritation, but the chloramines, formed by a reaction between the chlorine and urine. So if your eyes sting, or your skin hurts, it's the f*cking urine which is causing a problem.


      I hope you still want to swim. I don't.

    2. Yes I have not swum in our pools for a good ten years now, and you have confirmed my suspicions TSB. I am also sensitive to the
      large does of chlorine and it sets off my eczema. I don't think I shall ever return now after the info you have just shared.

      Anyway I always paid the money for a locker that locked. I was never going to run the risk of getting my stuff knicked. Maybe you will need to do that the next time you visit the pools. Typical Scot not wanting to spend a few dollars on ensuring the security of your personals. Now you have found out the hard way, and are sufferring the most annoying inconvenience.

    3. I used to use the lockers for wallets and keys and stuff, but I never thought anyone would nick my specs.

    4. Gag! Oh, thats horrid news...I'll stick to the lovely safe sea from now on. They only dump fecal matter into that...

    5. Plus the radioactive waste from all of the nuclear power stations.

      Feel safe.

  4. I think you should develop a phobia so that you don't have to go, ever again! You have put me off public baths for ever. Obviously, the Romans quite likes sharing cast off bodily parts and secretions! Yuk :-)

    1. Dear YONKS, I already have the phobia, it's just that my Beloved doesn't let it effect her desire to "do things together" I completely and totally agree with you.

      Yuk indeed.

  5. As you say why nick them as they are of hardly any use to anyone else, unless they have exactly the same sight defect.

    I always keep a spare pair in my car - see thought of this before - so if something happens to the current pair I can at least drive home.

    1. It beats me why anyone would want to do it, but scrotes operste on their own rules, or really lack of rules.

      OK, that makes me feel really better, go on, rub it in, make me feel like a completely unprepared idiot. Whch to be fair, in this particular case, I decidedly am.

      I do keep nan earthquake kit in my car, with a change of underwear, socks, water and all of my medications. But I never thought about glasses.

    2. TSB you need to upgrade your earthquake kit. I thought being ex-army you would have an much more extensieve kit! When I worked at NLHS I kept all that stuff in my car plus a few warm blankets and a sleeping bag, torch and towel and bog paper, plus soem big bottles of water. Just in case I ever got stranded in NL and could not get home over that hill due to some Civil Emergency, with there being only one way in and out of NL. On day another staff member noticed the contents of my car boot one day and laughed until I then told them my reasoning.

  6. I never swim in public pools. In the sea, off the Breton coast, I love it. Everyone can piss all they like and it's diluted in billions of tonnes of water between Finisterre and Delaware.

    Now then... "debraded", not a word, according to my Shorter OED. I think it's "abraded" you're after. Sorry to be nitpicky but I like picking nits.

    1. Swimming in the sea is, I agree, great. However, I've found that when we went swimming in the sea off Scotland, I tended to get almost instant numbness, due to the bloody freezing waters.

      My happiest experience was either in Crete, where as a 24 year old, I found, with my mates, that a gentle swim in the Med. before breakfast, was a great hangover cure, aided by a few Ouzos. But the absolute best was swimming with the reef fish and turtles on the Great barrier Reef off Cairns in Queensland. Absolutely perfect. Warm water and thousands of colourfull fish. I could have spent days just snorkling around. I really didn't want to go back.

      Now then... "debraded". You'rer absolutely correct, it is not a word (although in retrospect it could be) it is a typo. I meant to type debrided.

      I like picking nits as well, and I've got hundreds to choose from in NLHS.

    2. Totally agree TSB. Snorkelling off the Great Barrie near Cairns is the best. Nirvana!
      A great thing to visualize when one is editating after a hard day at the chalk face.

    3. I'm too wound up to meditate, I prefer total unconsciousness

  7. I always assume that the horrible public is treating the pool like a commode. Animals.

    I am actually a terrible swimmer, despite the fact that I was on a U.S. Coast Guard search and rescue team. The economy is better and they were desperate for members at that time.

    I'm sure your worst fears are right on the money. Those filters aren't cleaned, my friend.

    Have you ever gone to a public pool and seen a laughing mother there with her diapered baby? I don't care if it's a "swim" diaper. They should be banned.

    I'm back from my holiday and am as cheerful as ever.

    1. Yep, the public are just a bunch of anti-social animals. Except us of course.

      Thanks for reinforcing my fears about the filters. may have to move up from Dettol to bleach on the next visit, and maybe add some lipolase enzymes.

      It's not so much the little darlings swimming that bothers me, it's the brown vapour trail they leave behind.

      Glad you enjoyed Las Vagas. Hope you won.

      Did you see Grissom while you were there?

  8. well there's your get-out-of-the-pool-free-card........worth £450 no??

    1. YaH: On the face of it yes. But I've got a terrible feeling that not only will I be £450 out of pocket, but my Beloved will not deviate from her plan to "do thngs together in the pool" *sob*

  9. The worst thing about losing your glasses is that you can't even see well enough to find them.

    1. So true. Plus it's the feeling of complete vulnerability. I might even try to get enough cash together to get my eyes treated by LASEK or something similar.

  10. The pool sounds gruesome. You need the all important tiki hut for cocktail time.

    1. Trust me, it is well past gruesome. Now that idea is excellent. A very large rum-based cocktail would be excellent, but a slight problem that in NZ, a tiki means something different (In Māori tiki is the first man, like Adam)Rum is still good though.

  11. This post had me laughing out loud quite a few times. Does your Beloved also just want to keep you healthy by forcing you to go swimming with her - not just to get you to do things togther? I'm sorry about your glasses. How annoying. Does your beloved know how you feel about swimming? How long have these swimming under duress sessions been going on for? Years? Months?


    1. I'm so glad my pain and anguish keeps you amused :=)
      We've had more "fights" over swimming "together" than anything else (apart from money) but she still insists that we go.
      I'm a wimp.
      We swim.

      They've been going on since our kids were 5, so about 25 bloody years.
      Don't you just admire my grit?

      I'm a wimp.


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