People To Avoid At The Gym: Naked Old Men
Welcome to "People To Avoid At The Gym," a weekly series where we'll be highlighting people you should avoid at the gym. Last week, we told you to avoid the Whey-Powered Fart Wagon. This week: Naked Old Men in the locker room.
When I used to work out at my local YMCA, a freshly-built facility with chrome-y equipment and lots of colorful things to look at, the clientele was a nice little cross section of Manhattan below 14th street.
There were meatheads. There were gay men. There impossibly chic and attractive young women. There were people who had just gotten out of prison. There were kids there for swimming classes with their bi-lingual nannies, Gaucho-level high school basketball players there to play pickup, and housewives being guided from one light-impact workout to another by a jacked Dominican trainer who I once saw rollerblading down 5th avenue in super-short jorts. His name was Domingo, and it was one of the most terrifying things I have ever seen.
Now I work out at a different fitness center closer to my apartment, one that's made up of generic people in their mid-20s, and I miss all of the different characters at my old Y.
Except for one group. One group was the scourge of that gym, and I'm glad, for the most part, that I'm rid of them.
They are the Naked Old Men who parade their aging junk to and fro, and they will ruin your day with one accidental glance. Here's why and how you need to avoid them.
Who are they? Naked Old Men who let their old balls fly like the wrinkliest of freak flags.
Defining characteristics? Pectorals that have devolved into Ric Flair-level moobs. Genitals that resemble Droopy Dog. Gold chains that tout ethnic white heritage. A shambled gait and Walker-like obliviousness. Absolutely no fucking clothes.
Habits: Naked Old Men like to congregate with other Naked Old Men and make small talk. They talk about the weather. They talk about the Knicks. They talk about their wives. They talk about anything at all, except for the fact that they've been standing around naked for close to an hour. This maintenance of perceived normalcy makes it okay for them to be swinging around willy-nilly for awhile. But may also have to do with the fact that the older you get, the less you care about stuff like being naked in a room full of people for entirely too long. If their nakedness wasn't so gross, it would be commendable.
Why are they naked? With age comes comfort in one's own skin. Which is another way of saying that these guys will milk the clock. They will take every opportunity available to advertise their scrotums, which now have a lower center of gravity than Maurice Jones-Drew. Remember Saddam Hussein when he came out of that hole in the ground? That's what we're dealing with here. Capital of Sagdad, population: your sightline.
Which brings up another point: There is a very real chance that, as you sit down on a bench in the locker room to tie your shoes, you will feel a presence hovering over your shoulder. Don't look up. It is most likely a set of gigantic old balls set against a wild Gandalf forest of white pubes. Old men, for whatever reason, like to do the Captain Morgan pose while they're naked.
How do I avoid them? You can't avoid them, really. The best you can hope for is to stay vigilant. If you see a group of old guys with towels on, odds are those towels are coming off and those balls are coming out. So you're going to want to set up shop in a different part of the locker room. Sometimes, though, that's not an option: there's a cluster of turkey wattle junk between you and your locker. At that point, you have to say "S'CUSE ME GENTS" louder than you probably should, and battle through the ensuing confusion. It's like a ninja that throws one of those smoke bombs when they're cornered, then is gone as soon as the air clears.
Illustration by Sean Panzera.
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