Monday, October 13, 2008

Open Mouth, Insert Foot

Back in May, I joined a health club so that I would be able to continue to run.

Yes, I know that sounds weird, so a bit of background. I don't sweat. I get a tiny bit of glistening on my upper lip, but that's about it. Needless to say, doing things in great heat tends to cause problems for me. I've passed out before, and I have long ago learned that if I exercise outside, I need to drink a lot of water while doing so. Running outside in the heat and not sweating, not a good idea, I decided.

I investigated a couple of local clubs in the area before joining the one I did. This one cost far less than the one that's technically closest to me that most of my friends belong to, and it had free childcare for two hours a day. Sold. Oh, and the offer swim lessons (that are better and cheaper than what we'd been doing previously). And I can do all my yoga and any other class I want as part of my membership... which is just about what I was paying for my classes alone.

The club I belong to is a chain, and they recently (as in two weeks ago) opened up a branch near my office. A few friends at work were going to join it, I knew. I was interested to hear what they thought of it, for a few reasons.

Obviously, I wanted to validate my choice that it's a good gym and that they like it as much as I do. That one's a given, right? But the new gym is a fancier one. It has cherry lockers and granite countertops and slate floors and three levels instead of the two at my gym. So at work I asked my friends what they thought of it, and we discussed the merits of it. A fourth person joined our conversation who isn't up on the gym situation.

Sean: So you belong to the same gym?
Diane: Kind of. It's not the same gym, but it's part of the chain.
Melanie: Right. We can go to her gym, but she can't go to ours.
Sean: Well, why not?
Me: My gym is a gold level club. The new one is a black club. I can go to any gold club or below but no black clubs.
Diane: Well, if you wanted to pay for a guest fee, you could.
Me: That's true. But I didn't join the black club because there are enough gold clubs near me that I could go to one of them if I really wanted to go to one that isn't mine. I didn't see the point in paying more for a single membership than I do for my whole family for the privilege of going to the black club.
Melanie: (frostily) It's onyx.
Me: What?
Melanie: It's an onyx level club, not a black club.
Me: Oh. Ummm, I can see why that would be a distinction. Sorry - when I joined, my membership guy talked about the gold clubs and the black clubs. I had no idea.

We all played it off from there, but anyone want to take a guess as to why Melanie was irritated by my erroneous (and I swear completely unintentional) use of black club?

Yep, just one of those moments when I wanted to slink into the floor. Oops.


AutoSysGene October 13, 2008 at 6:37 PM  

Wow, I'm one of the most politically correct people around and the whole black club thing didn't even occur to me.


Anonymous October 13, 2008 at 7:24 PM  

Oh no! Well, it's funny reading it even if it was mortifying at the time.

MaBunny October 13, 2008 at 8:36 PM  

OOPSY! Even when its not anything to get offended about , SOMEONE will find something to get offended about - geesh...

Anonymous October 13, 2008 at 11:08 PM  


As I'm reading it, I was totally not thinking you meant that.

Cookie October 13, 2008 at 11:43 PM  

Too funny! Just glad it wasn't me ;)

2nd Cup of Coffee October 14, 2008 at 6:29 AM  

First of all, I'm a non-sweat-er person, too. It's weird, isn't it. Secondly, if the person you were communicating with you truly knows you, I'm sure she didn't assume you were carelessly offensive. We all make these gaffes from time to time. Makes me glad I'm not running for office!

Karen October 14, 2008 at 7:43 AM  

Geez, she needs to get over herself. So you laugh it off and go on.

Ronnica October 15, 2008 at 1:22 PM  

Oh, wow, I didn't think about it that way 'til the end! I can see why having "black clubs" for only certain people would be a problem!

One time my mom and I were waiting to see my brother play a summer league basketball game. I peeked into the gym to see who was playing and I said, "the black team." Did I get a chewing out from my mom! Sure they had some black kids on their team, but their uniforms were black! What else was I SUPPOSED to say?

WheresMyAngels October 15, 2008 at 11:01 PM  

I was thinking it was weird they called it a black club!! lol

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