Sunday, March 29, 2009

Trauma In the Sauna

On my recent trip to Houston, I had a very interesting encounter. It went something like this:

Setting: After a long day at work, I decided that I wanted to check out the sauna in the fitness center. In Qatar, I have started going to the sauna fairly regularly and find it to be a very pleasant experience, plus its conveniently located in my apartment tower. All this gave me a good bit of anticipation about going to the sauna in the hotel. So I enter the gym and walk straight to the sauna and discover that it is not on. Its warm in there, hot maybe, but not sauna hot. So I turn the knobs to full blast and walk around the gym for a while. After ten minutes or so, I return and find the sauna to only be marginally warmer. But since it was getting late, I just decided to go ahead and wait inside while it warmed up. So I strip down, wrap myself in a towel and plop down on one of the wooden benches. A few minutes pass, and then I am interrupted…

[John Doe opens door] John: Is the sauna working?
Me: I think so, but it is taking forever to warm up.John: Hmmm, yea, it does not feel too warm in here, but maybe it will warm up.
Me: Yea, I am hoping so [secretly wishing this guy would close the door and stop letting in what little heat is already inside].
John: Hey, where did you find the towels?
Me: [thinking “what an idiot” he just passed the towels, and he is STILL letting out the heat] The towels are right there on your left.
John: Thanks [disappears]
Me: [yelling to catch his attention] Could you close the door better? The heat is getting out with it cracked like that. [thinking ‘douchbag’]

So as John leaves, I continue semi-relaxing in the tepid heat. I give up on thinking it will get much hotter, but its still nice being in the warmth. I was quite content by myself when John came back in.

[John enters and stands up against the wall opposite to where I am laying down]
John: Not too hot in here is it?
Me: No not really. Pretty sure its busted.
John: So you stay here?
Me: Yep. [What kind of question is this? It’s a hotel gym… of course I stay here]
John: Yea me too… here on a business trip. I hate all this traveling.
Me: I’m here on business too and I agree, traveling can be a pain.
John: They did put me up in this killer suite though. The place is huge, its basically an apartment.
Me: Not bad, how did you get hooked up with that? What floor is it on?
John: It’s the top floor, and I have no idea how I got it. Guess I just lucked out.

[Silence for a while. Decide John is just weird but a nice guy]

John: So how was your workout?
Me: I did not work out, just decided to come to the sauna.
John: Oh, it looks like you work out though. You look like you’re in good shape.
Me: Thanks. [I think]

[More silence]

John: Man, this place would be awesome if it had massages.
Me: Yea, that would be great. I just had a massage the other day though, my mother recently opened a massage spa.
John: Cool. [Pause] I give killer massages.

[Now I am officially thinking this dude is a bit weird. That was a pretty gay thing to say, but he has no signs of stereotypical gayness. Just seems like a 40 something white guy]

John: I can’t wait to get back home.
Me: Oh yea, being away from the family [hint, hint] just sucks.
John: No, I never worry about that.
Me: Oh. Well when are you leaving?
John: Tomorrow, last night in town.

John: You really do look like you’re in great shape.
Me: [Thinking, ‘damn, this dude really is gay’] Not really man, looks can be deceiving.
John: No I don’t think so.

So at this point, I realize this dude is eyeing my no-fly zone, but at the same time, I want to enjoy my sauna. So I am sitting there trying to figure out if I am going to have to leave, yell at him, or wait for him to give up. But also, I am a little curious about what he is going to say next, after all this is the first time I think I have been officially hit on by a dude.

John: You up for a massage?
Me: No thanks.

[Silence, for the first time I start to mentally verify that I can kick this guys ass]

John: Are you sure you don’t want a massage? I’ll give you a massage.
Me: [chuckling] No man, I don’t think I want a massage from you.
John: Well if you change your mind, just come up to 2312.

[John exits sauna]

I sit in the sauna for a few minutes because I am afraid of running into the guy again, and eventually another dude comes in to the sauna. He sees it’s not that warm and starts to leave. Seeing my safety net, I jump out of the sauna and follow that guy to the locker room. Sure enough, old weirdo John was in the locker room very slowly putting his clothes on. Eventually he leaves, but not without giving me another look-over. Yuck.
*As a caveat to any gay/lesbian friends out there. Although slightly disturbed by the idea of man-lovin, I mostly found it disgusting that this random dude tried to pick me up in a sauna (like a prostitute), and not that a gay man hit on me. PS, I don’t think he was ‘true-gay’ either, I think he was one of those DL guys who probably has a wife and kids at home. Sad.*


Blogger CJ Nichol said...

Wow! How come all the gay guys are drawn to you? Ethiopia, now here. I'm surprised it hasn't happened in Doha, I'm sure there's some DL happening there.

Anyway, I can tell you have been missing the back of your hand...."douchebag"...when did you start saying that? and you misspelled it.

Funny though.

9:43 AM  
Blogger Anthony Jackson said...

For your information, this was the first time in life I have officially been hit on by another man. And I hope you aren't implying that Wonde (our tour guide in Ethiopia) is gay, he just very much wanted to be my friend!

1:45 AM  
Blogger oogie said...

Yay post!!

I and some friends are trying to retire the word Douchebag. We shortened D-bag to D-B then to Deeb. Pass it on :)

But yeah, how awkward, and what a sad and pathetic man. Imagine if more people didn't feel ashamed of their homosexual leanings. Of course, there will always be people like this (we women too get hit on by men in the most outrageous ways), but still. I just think there would be less instances of this. It's so sad.

7:29 PM  
Anonymous Kristin said...

Considering my sick and twisted sense of humor...this story really made my day. You should have just said, "No homo." That would have saved you a few minutes of awkward staring :)

11:22 AM  
Blogger TitansFan said...

That is the exact reason I bought my Infared Sauna. No awkward moments!!!

12:09 PM  
Blogger Mel said...


11:11 PM  

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