This blog post has been a long time coming. Since graduating from Stanford two years ago, I've been blessed to still be able to be a member of a sports club for free. The Pacific Shores office park where Zazzle is located has the Pacific Shores Center in the middle, which features a full workout facility, basketball/volleyball court, pool, spa, sauna, etc.
The Arrillaga Center for Sports & Recreation at Stanford doesn't have a locker room, presumably because the majority of the users are Stanford students who can go home to their dorm rooms to change, shower, etc. However, when I joined the Pacific Shores Center, I was introduced to the "real world" locker room. Let's just say that it has been an interesting experience. An experience so interesting, in fact, that it inspired me to develop the following rules of the locker room:
Locker Room Rule #1: There must always be bath soap in the showers
It's kinda like going #2 and mid-plop realizing that there's no toilet paper. I either have to ask my neighbor to spare a couple of squares (hopefully it's two-ply!) or I gotta make that waddle walk to the next stall. That's nasty. Similarly in the shower situation, I either have to make do with the soap substitute (a.k.a. shampoo) or I have to make a drenched walk to another shower. My neighbor passing me liquid soap under the stalls seems kinda weird (and questionable)...
Locker Room Rule #2: Shower curtains need to be wider than the stall
So in order to not expose myself to the entire world, I have to play this back and forth game. If I want to rinse off the right side of my front or the left side of my back, I have to move the shower curtain all the way to the left, and vice versa. I just completely avoid the stalls next to the entrance cuz then it basically turns into a peep show.
Speaking of exposés...
Locker Room Rule #3: No toweling of self in the shower with the curtain open
I really just don't get this. Here's what happens. Dude finishes taking a shower. Instead of reaching for his towel w/o moving the curtain, he just completely opens the curtain to retrieve his towel. This is already an unnecessary nakedness penalty flag, but fine whatever. However, if you are gonna do that, please close the curtain once you have your towel!
There's absolutely no reason for him to towel himself out in the open. None whatsoever. I don't care if he just took a really hot shower and it's really "steamy" so he needs some fresh air. Imma need him to man up real quick and deal. There's nothing more barf-provoking than stepping out of my shower only to see the dude across from me toweling himself out in the open. Actually there is something worse (and I'll get to it later), but it's still beyond not cool.
Locker Room Rule #4: No idle nakedness
Unfortunately for me, not everyone lives by my code of ethics in the locker room. Because of this, I'm resigned to the fact that dudes will be naked around me while they dress and undress. And in my opinion, this period of naked time should only be a mere matter of seconds. But for some reason, dudes like to just be naked. I don't have any other way to explain it. They just be naked.
They'll walk to the shower with their towel in their hand (as if it was briefcase). If there's a line for the showers, they'll wait in line with their towel over their shoulder (as if it was a messenger back). When they come out of the shower, it's with the towel wrapped around their head (as if they were...). Ok, so I haven't actually seen that last one (maybe if I worked in 'Frisco?), but the first two happen all the time! I don't understand how dudes can have such naked comfort to kick it like that.
Speaking of kickin' it...
Locker Room Rule #5: No kickin' it on the furniture naked
On the flip side, it can't be sanitary for him either though. I mean, here in the Bay with the drought issue, it's really dusty (you should see my car if you don't believe me). So it's highly likely that I have all sorts of dust and dirt particles on my clothing. I sit on the benches clothed before and after showering, so now those particles are on the bench. Then Buck comes along and sits on the bench all naked-like and now he has dusty cheeks. Nasty. And when you think about the fact that most people sitting on the benches are of the sweaty persuasion fresh off a workout, the nastiness level rises to a dangerous shade of chartreuse.
That sounds bad, but nothing's worse than...
Locker Room Rule 6: Do NOT talk to me naked. No really.
Seriously, though. Dudes be tryna make convo, asking me questions like "So how was the ballin' in the gym?" or "That core exercise class is crazy hard, huh?" or "Do you think this growth is a boil, a mole or something worse?" Okay, so thankfully the last one hasn't happened (I for real might throw up if it did tho), but the other two have. On multiple occasions! Why are they talking to me?!
And there's definitely, absolutely, positively no way that I'm having a face-to-face conversation with a naked man. Usually I just ignore them or mumble "yeah" while I'm pretending to look for my phone in my locker. But if for some reason I feel like I actually need to respond, I'm doing a complete 180 with my back to them. I don't even care if that's being rude or disrespectful. Shoot, they're being rude AND disrespectful by tryna "conversate" with me with no clothes on.
At first I was thinking that maybe this was just the PSC gym that was like this. But then I thought back to when I was in HS going to 24 Hour Fitness Sport, and it was the same way. It was just that back then, I would drive home to shower, so I was never in the locker room for any appreciable amount of time. I wonder if other dudes have experienced this phenomenon as well.
Actually, what I really wonder is if this happens in the women's locker room also. Back in the day, I used to dream of the girl's locker room being filled with cheerleaders having wet-towel fights (the cousin of the slumber party pillow fight), but now I don't want to even imagine grown, old women walking around naked in the women's locker room. That's not tight. Not tight at all.
Update: Read the facebook note version of this blog post for more comments on this issue.