I don’t like to gossip but there’s a woman in my gym who works out at the same exact times I do. She talks incessantly to her trainer at a pitch and volume that would make fingers on the blackboard sound soothing. I’m not usually bothered by such behaviors but try as I might not to listen, the highly personal content–I mean HIGHLY personal–is something that does not belong in a public place. It’s not my gym nor a battle I want to take on so have chosen not to say anything to her. However, I may have to make an extra trip to the dentist to repair the damage done to my teeth from gritting.
What to do? There’s always tv noise or rock music blaring when I walk in so asked my trainer if he would play some classical music—loud. The first delicious sounds were of Beethoven’s 7th Symphony. At first I struggled to block out the lady’s powerful voice and focus on the music. But then, the lovely chords came through.
Looking up at the clock in between those lovely crunches, I realized that 8 minutes had gone by. Normally, at the gym, I am aware of every half second for the whole hour. I expected a complaint from the voluminous talker but none came, and I was almost disappointed at the missed opportunity. I had my delicate but direct response ready: “The pitch of your voice is right at the level that makes my hearing aids squeal. I wonder if you could lower the volume a little, and then we could turn down the sound system.”
If anything, I think both her pitch and volume lessened with the competition. My usually day-long hour at the gym went quickly. By the time I left, the sounds of a march by John Phillip Sousa filled the tiny gym. (see 11 second video below) I drove home singing.