Close Encounters of the Weird Kind

I was walking down an aisle in Target (yet again), minding my own business (wandering in a confused, haphazard manner), when I was interrupted by an extremely toned man who appeared to be in his mid-thirties.

"Hello you!"

After glancing over my shoulder to make sure he was, in fact, talking to me, I smiled and said hello back.

"I was just in the men's clothing section," he said, as if I was looking for him.  Sure, sure, why not?  "And then I saw you and I just had to come meet you."

Right.  Because that's why normal people come to Target.  "How nice," I said.

"But the point is, I'm a fitness instructor.  Do you work out?"

"Yes."  And no, I will not buy your Super Duper Deluxe Workout Machine that will supposedly fit an entire weeks-worth of cardio into eleven minutes, help me lose weight without changing my diet, tone my entire body, and vacuum my carpet.  If it doesn't load my dishwasher, I don't want the thing.

"Well, I train girls of your exact shape and size for Exercise Competitions."  (What?)  "This is my card.  I'd really like to work with you."  And he said it all, without blinking once!

"You're kidding."  My exact shape and size?  Really?  And what is that, exactly?  Short?  Tall?  Grande?  Venti?  Oh no wait, that's Starbucks.

"Yes, do you live here?"  (I just love meeting strangers who don't recognize social boundaries, don't you?)

"Um, no," I lied (because at the time, I was still living somewhat close to Target).

"Where do you live?"  (So to-the-point!  What a refreshing invasion of my personal space.)

Fighting the urge to tell him I wasn't allowed to talk to strangers because I was only twelve, instead I said, "I live in Atlanta."  And then immediately wished I hadn't.  Why did I pick a city located only two hours away?  Why couldn't I have said Bismarck?  Or Beijing?  I hear Beijing's just lovely this time of year.

"Ok, perfect!" he said, grinning.  "I actually do a lot of competitions there!  So I can come visit you when I'm in town!"  And would you believe it, he was ENTIRELY SERIOUS WHEN HE SAID THIS.

All that to say . . . if you see me on national television, it's because I decided to follow my life-long dream of working out harder and/or better than the other girls of my exact shape and size, trying to win a Gold Medal (aka Free Drinks at Starbucks) because I know how to use the equipment best!  I'll let you know once I get my Black Spandex Biker Shorts - that's the top level in the Exercise Competition World. 

If you'd also like to become a Personal Fitness Competitor, here are the rules I was given for recruiting other people (in and/or outside of Target):

Basically, "if the applicant is young, tell him he's too young. Old, too old. Fat, too fat. If the applicant then waits for three days without food, shelter, or encouragement, he may then enter and begin his training." (Fight Club).

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