Going Down Like The Dollar

By W R Jones


    Look like they are in trouble?  I had that same “deer in the headlights” look at last Thursday’s water aerobics class.   Erin convinced me I should take her class.  I, fool that I am, told her ok, but I thought the class was for fat old women.  I was to eat those words, or maybe drown in them is a better description.

    Except for one young boy there with his mother, I was the only male.  I was expecting to be in the pool with a herd of water buffalo so I was pleasantly surprized at the number of attractive women.  Feeling this might not be such a bad class after all, I got into the water.   It is very odd, but I could have sworn I heard sighs of relief from the other students.   They had most likely been overwhelmed by how good I looked in my home made trunks. 

    I’ve always been fashion conscious although you wouldn’t know it by listening to my daugher’s comments on my apparel.   I know thongs are in style with the younger (way younger) set, but with the recent financial disasters I could not afford to buy one.  I created my own design using a Glad bag and a couple of rubber bands.   I was looking like 10,000 dollars worth of nickels.

    For the first 20 minutes we waved our arms and legs around in the water.  It was sort of ballet type moves so I was glad it was underwater where no one could see.   I started thinking the class was a waste of time and then…. it got a LOT harder.   We were told to raise both feet out of the water in front of us and paddle back and forth across the pool in this position.   Then, this not seeming hard enought to suit Erin, do the same thing with both feet out of the water but legs spread.  

    I was flailing in an effort to keep my head out of the water so’s I could breathe once in a while.   In a vain effort to deceive (this is so unlike me), I tried keeping one foot on the bottom and one foot out of the water moving back and forth so fast it would seem like both feet were up.   The water was too deep.   Erin, sweetheart that she is, made sure everyone in class knew who the drowning old geezer was; “you alright over there, BILL?”   At least I think that was what she was saying.  It is hard to hear with your head under water.

    I’m dying thinking there is no way I can do this sort of thing for 40 minutes.  Meanwhile this 70 year old walrus is coming at me from across the pool with her feet high out of the water, a serene look of no effort on her face, and skimming along on the top like a water bug.

   Later, Erin announced an exercise to the class that had them all groaning.  Oh lordy, what is coming now?   She told them she was going to be a little easier for my sake.   It was treading water with first one hand out, then the other, then both.   By then I was hanging on to the side for dear life asking myself what had I been thinking to try this.

    Like many things in life the best part is saved for last.   That would be getting out of the water on a winter night; with the car parked a LONG ways away (so I could have a cigar and Snickers) without being chastised.  I literally shivered my ass off.  It came right off.  Now my pants hang concave back there.

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20 Responses to Going Down Like The Dollar

  1. Funny story, Bill. The exercises sound a lot like our water ballet stuff at camp. That was summer in Oklahoma. Swimming in winter, even indoors (esp. indoors) is for people who like chlorine and high humidity. And freezing hair outdoors afterwards.

    Also, women with lots of body fat could do the exercises more easily because they float well. Lean bodies sink.

  2. OH BTW, the drawing is lovely. Tell us about it!

  3. Lisa B. says:

    Bill, the painting is awesome! Is that one of your baby pictures?

    Diana is right, fat bodies float like a buoy.

    A great painter such as yourself should not risk drowning to keep fit. Next week, how about a pair of water wings, or maybe even a snorkel?

  4. Dawn says:

    Love the painting!

  5. Jala Pfaff says:

    Oh my god, this post is so funny, I don’t even know where to start commenting. Perhaps with the garbage bag + rubber bands swimsuit? Or perhaps not. By the way, the main kid’s face in this very fun painting is very Milt Kobayashi.

  6. Angela says:

    Great story – but I really want to hear about that wonderful drawing!

  7. You are tooo funny, Bill…
    It’s always funny when your words bring forth visions…

    And yes, I agree with everyone else… that is a great drawing/painting that started off this whole laff-fest!

  8. wrjones says:

    Diana – Thanks. Water ballet you say? Do you get to wear those cute litte shoes that help stand on tippy toe?

    Lisa – I am going back this week just for the challenge of living through it twice. I need to learn the eggbeater kick.

    Dawn – Thanks. Actually it is a charcoal drawing. Is your monitor black and white?

    Jala – he does seem to have that nose. I guessing you would like to paint me in my homemade suit.

    Angela – Thanks. There is nothing really to tell. Just toddlers clean up a bathroom. Early child labor.

    Marian – Thanks. I expect you would like me to model my swimsuit at well. Don’t be stuffing any $1’s into my rubber bands, I want $10’s and up only.

  9. A wonderful drawing and story. Are you going to do a self portrait of you in your newly designed bathing suit?

  10. Don Gray says:

    Nice drawing, Bill. Not so much Kobayashi to me–more like Cassat.

    I’ll chime in in support of the Glad bag swim trunk self-portrait!

  11. wrjones says:

    Connine – Thanks. I wasn’t planning on a self portrait in my Glad bag, but with demand being what it is (to NEVER reveal myself) I’m vacilllating.

    Don – Thanks. I don’t know; afraid I’d make myself sick.

  12. Barbara Pask says:

    What a sweet painting or sketch??? What medium is this? Love the sweet faces. Just don’t even know what to say about your exercise class, ha.

  13. I’ve another suggestion for your bathing suit. I’m imagining green for your Glad bag creation. Without changing brand names here, there are the nice, sporty white Kitchen Catchers. You might try safety pins for the sides? or those officy fold back clips? They are quite strong
    Admittedly, it’s not a thong; but maybe you could be a forerunner of a different style. Fashion will follow!

  14. Rebecca says:

    Nice sketch or painting? Thanks for the comment on mine, which are actually watercolors. he he

    So, with your ass falling off, did you even remember the cigar? It’s easy to forget to savor something privately when you’re an ass-leper

  15. You have a nice style of drawing. I often wonder where you get the inspiration for your images, although I guess I wonder about mine too. Your water aerobics class sounds like it’s not for the faint of heart…perhaps you should try Bikram Yoga next which is 90 minutes of poses in a 105 degree room. I would just recommend different attire.

  16. Carol King says:

    Love this drawing! Did you round up a few toddlers and hold them hostage in your bathroom while you drew it?

    The water aerobics class sounds like fun! But not being able to swim, I would NOT have wanted to have both feet out of the water. Does that mean you were on your head?

    And now your ass-less? How unfortunate!

  17. wrjones says:

    LFbeauty – I have the water class tonight; will try your idea. The see through Glad bag wasn’t the hit I thought it would be.

    Rebecca – ass-leper? I’m blown away by your medical knowledge. You are the ownly one of our three readers to correctly diagnose my ailment.

    Paula – It is not really inspiration. In academic circles it is often refered to as plagiarism. Thanks for the exercise tip. Just what I’m looking for, another form of torture.

    Carol – It it just your normal parenting. Lock the toddlers in the bathroom until they are 21. You should learn to swim. Ya, I know, it is scary when your lungs fill with water and you are headed to the bottom.

  18. kevmoore says:

    Firstly, great piece of art Bill! Over in the Uk we had commercials on the TV with a small labrador puppy running around wrapped in toilet paper (No, I don’t get it either) -and it brought that to mind. Your water aerobics class sounded more scary than your trunks…I remember going down my local health club one time, expecting a leisurely, solo mid-afternoon swim, and realising all too late I’d got the days wrong. A bunch of women – I use the term loosely, entered the pool and just stood there. Now, this was fine, barely a ripple, what good it was doing them I don’t know – but the music from the instructor’s ghetto blaster, careening off the echoey walls, while the idiot leapt around poolside in a dayglo jumpsuit. The gathering in the pool resembled a herd of bewildered hippopotami staring in thrall at a dancing banana. I cancelled my membership.

  19. Dar says:

    Bill, I loooove this drawing.
    When I try to picture that Glad bag of nickels, it looks something like that kid’s diaper.

  20. wrjones says:

    Kev – I’m growing to like hanging with the hippos. I need them to pull me out of the water. I can imagine the sound in the hard walled pool area. I have to wear earplugs in a spin class. I keep asking the instructor if she is so interested in health why she is not concerned with damaging everyone’s hearing.

    Dar – Thanks. You should probably stick with that image, don’t go to the actual view.

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