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Little Bit of Freak

Written by: Kym

It is said that myths are mankind’s way of explaining what they cannot logically explain and so are made palatable to the common man by way of divine providence. For this very reason, the Gods do not have to explain how or why something occurs. To them it just does and requires no explanation, only acceptance. It is perhaps for this same reason that bodybuilders accept the common figures around the gym that defy logical explanation. They’re legends in themselves. A folklore passed from one generation of bodybuilder to the next that is often heard about but rarely seen.

As the contestants of the Pro/Am competition and bodybuilders everywhere can attest, they’ve heard these age-old stories over and over again. Sometimes in the gym, sometimes in the changing room and sometimes, on the message boards. Every so often, during one of our workouts, we come into contact with a character so polarized in one unique characteristic trait that they have become a legend unto themselves.

For example, there’s the screamer who will insist on releasing a supersonic burst of raw vocal energy so loud that Whitney Houston would have trouble making herself heard while singing a rendition of the sonically loud “I Will Always Love You” if they shared a room. Then there’s the always-grinning muscle-dwarf who proceeds to clang every 10lb dumbbell so loudly on the racks every time he finishes a rep that you’d think he was going for the power lifting world record despite his dubious lifting stats.

What is it that is so compelling about these people that we’ve immortalized them in goofy banter between the top and bottom gaps of the shower room cubicles? Do we regale our captive audience with these tales as a way to pass the time, or is there a deeper meaning behind our reverent religious adherence to the accurate portrayal of their contentiously charming quirks?

Freak as a term has a multi-dimensional meaning. It can mean someone is exceptionally huge; for example, “Check out Adrian climb the wall using only his arms! He’s nature’s freak!” or conversely it can have the meaning that causes us to raise one eyebrow, a move which I can only do if I wink my right eye at the same time. In reference to the latter, while it is easy to secretly grin and categorically place our aforementioned stereotypes into the freak category who once upon a time, people paid good money for to see in a circus, one must begin to question, “Do we all have a little bit of freak in us?”

As a personal discovery, I had stumbled upon possibly one of the greatest discoveries of the 21st century: disabled toilets. They are without doubt the cleanest, experience low traffic, and posses extra amenities conveniently often neglected in public access toilets and showers. Shamelessly, I use these rooms to my advantage every time I finish a workout, for not only do they provide me with protection from the sight of old men who insist on partaking in the sport of naked shaving, the floors are eternally dry, a rare phenomenon that only occurs when swimmers don’t change in the same area as people who visit the gym.

One day, I discovered post-workout that someone had caught onto my idea of using these excellent hideaways as their own changing room. It was with chagrin that I walked to the public changing area, fuming that someone could have taken the area I had unofficially categorically labeled as my own. Gentlemanly as I am, I waited outside so I could deliver a heartfelt public lashing and make my practical claim on this area. In actual reality, far away from a dream land called fantasy, I had forgotten to take with me one of my sweaters which I had left up on the shower railings so I waited outside the disabled toilets despite the strange looks I was getting from people as they walked in and out of the changing rooms.

More recently, I paid a late visit to the gym on one occasion and with whilst taking my obligatory post workout shower in my secret room, the pleasant sound of a female staff/trainer rang out, “We’re closing gentlemen. Hurry up please.” With this statement, she proceeded to turn off the lights in the changing room. Night time with no lights in a dark room trying to have a shower equates to no fun. Frantically grabbing anything I could find in the dark, I was a sight to behold running out of the gym changing rooms, my hair in 60 different angles and undried with wet clothes haphazardly thrown on inside out in all sorts of strange and wonderful positions.

Some stories are so outrageous that we don’t know whether or not to believe them, but never so outrageous to be considered untrue, for in every story, there is a slight ounce of truth, an identifying mark that we connect with that reminds us, hang on a second, this could just have easily been us. At the end of the day, maybe we’re all just looking for a common freakishness that identifies with us and is able to communicate with us on a broad level. For if someone at my gym can come up with this quirky limerick at the suggestions board, then maybe his freakish ability for rhyme has benefited mankind after all.

Kym is secretly a spammer.

Moongewl is more than a little bit of freak...but not a superfreak.

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