a peek inside the fishbowl

25 May, 2007

IT’S CALLED A “LAP SWIM” FOR A REASON PEOPLE (and this was supposed to be fun!)

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life

It started out pretty well. I didn’t have too much trouble getting out of bed even though it was a full hour earlier than the usual time.

The walk was splendid, peaceful, tranquil, full of the sounds of chirping birds. I had the street to myself. It was my own private Idaho.

Pool entry was uneventful. There was no one at the desk to take my money. I walked right in. (I paid afterwards.) Since it was an early morning lap swim I didn’t think there’d be too many people in the pool. Wow! This was going to be great!

I changed, got in the water (this is one of Ottawa’s warmer pools), and started swimming. I love the feeling of the churning water, slicing through it with my body, the sound of my breathing. It felt really good, at least it did for those first four laps. And then I started to get tired.

Goddammit, this isn’t fun, this is EXERCISE!

I huffed and puffed. Boy am I in bad shape. I switched between freestyle (aka front crawl) and the breaststroke. Freestyle is the harder of the two for me, so I did many laps of breaststroke in between little sprints.

After awhile my back started hurting (my skills have oh so degenerated since my swimming heyday) and so I switched to backstroke. I swam two thirds of the way across the length of the pool when I decided I should see if there was anyone coming. Whoops! There was, but I stopped in time. She grimaced as I swam a wide arc to get around her. That was it. No one was hurt OR DAMAGED IN ANY WAY.

I completed that lap, and then another one, and took a breather in the shallow end. And that’s when I saw the lifeguard approaching. She was smiling, so it couldn’t be anything bad, could it?

She leaned over to speak to me.

“Would you mind swimming over there,” she said, pointing to the other lane. (There are two lanes in this pool.)

I must have looked puzzled.

“The ladies don’t like the splashing and they don’t want to get their hair wet,” she said.

“But this is a swimming pool,” I said.

The lifeguard gave me a sympathetic look. And walked away.

I know who it was. It was the lady I almost ran into. My swim had officially stopped being fun. I switched lanes, and did a furious set of laps. And a couple more. I was so ticked. I didn’t care how much water I stirred up. And then I got out.

I think I need to get myself one of these.

9 Responses to "IT’S CALLED A “LAP SWIM” FOR A REASON PEOPLE (and this was supposed to be fun!)"

1 | Marla

May 25th, 2007 at 8:55 am


And the biddies need to get themselves some of these:


2 | Hillary

May 25th, 2007 at 9:08 am


Oh noooo!

That swimex is pretty cool, though! hehe!

3 | Jen

May 25th, 2007 at 9:26 am


That’s awful. What a snob. Is snob the right word, i’m not sure.. This makes me think about the women that go to Starbucks and get upset if you are kind enought to pass them their cup at the coffee bar and grimmace because YOU have touched their cup.

Your right. It’s called lane swimming for a reason. Lane swimming, in my opinion, are for those people that want to do exercise (lane swimming), not bobbing their body around the pool and trying not to get their hair wet. Agh. Good luck with that!

4 | Miss Vicky

May 25th, 2007 at 11:09 am


what pool did you go to?

5 | Porter

May 25th, 2007 at 1:54 pm


ohhhhh, i don’t know if i could resist doing a big old cannon ball from the edge and then leaving!!

6 | Anna

May 25th, 2007 at 1:54 pm


Unfortunately, that probably is par for the course and the demographics at our pool. Mind you, if more people like you starting actually swimming, they might back off a little bit.

Did you try out the JCC pool yet? Not that far, the most beautiful pool in the city. You can pay as you go for lap swimming, no need to be a member.

7 | BeachMama

May 25th, 2007 at 2:08 pm


Too funny, the ladies must have been mad that a newcomer was in their lane.

I love those pools (Swim Ex) but I wonder if it would be really weird swimming in one. It took me a long time to get used to walking and running on a treadmill, I don’t know if I could do swimming in one place.

8 | katie

May 27th, 2007 at 7:10 am


demographics! only going to get worse (depending on which demographic you are in, of course!)

Little old ladies and pools. Too funny.

9 | Sharon

May 29th, 2007 at 1:11 pm


Oh You’ve got to be kidding? UNFu*king believable. Sorry about the words but That just makes me steam.
SIGH the world is very petty.

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