Friday, March 18, 2005

That girl at the gym in the Jacuzzi had wide doe eyes and a thin cute mouth. She started off saying how much will it cost her for me to swim her laps. I said I dunno, I'd still have to swim mine. She said she swims 20 laps most times, I said I go by time. I don't swim fast though. She said she didn't know if she'd do all her laps today, maybe 15. She just got back from Washington, D.C., where there's nothing to eat. Upon arrival at Penn Station her sinuses were filled with the odor of fried food from the many concessions – she thought it was pizza with garlic but who knows – and she was compelled to eat. Immediately. She had an omelet, fries. Pizza. Brownies. And now she made herself go to the gym.

We talked about the availability of foods and in particular specialty baked goods – blondies to be exact – in New York City and Washington, D.C. She was clearly involved in some arcane aspect of political lobbying but I thought it'd be more interesting not to know.

She said years ago when she moved to Washington she didn't cook and everything closed at six and the closest store was a train ride away and she literally cried. She cried.

I got in the pool and eventually she got right beside me and she did some quick, crawl laps and then stood up. She waited for me to swim up.

"Twelve," she said.

"Twelve, huh? Twelve laps," I replied.

"Yes," she said. "It's the final solu... It's the final answer."