Avoiding mirrors has been the central rule in my self-penned “Guide to Contentment” on the grounds of such views interfering with an enjoyment of cake and sausage rolls: all well, good and sensible until the other morning while, as I debated on whether to go for the full English or wave a hand in the general direction of health with a bowl of morally rich muesli, I wandered in front of the very object I normally avoid.
The Macintosh waistline is spread generously over a significant number of inches, or is that feet, and this became very apparent when it flaunted it’s girth in the mirror opposite. “Enough is enough” I said to myself and determined to join the gym which had opened recently in our town at a convenient location opposite the local pub.
A few pounds lighter, in the financial sense only, I found myself wandering into said gym dressed in a generous T-shirt, newly acquired trainers and shorts. The place was full of people looking disturbingly focussed in my opinion, although the Macintosh code of conduct allows for no personal comment apart from the occasional head-nodding exchange!
The equipment is baffling to the untrained eye but I allowed myself to wander on to a sort of running machine. As I stepped onto it I said to the chap on the adjoining machine, “Faster or slower eh” which I find can open conversations on a wide variety of topics. He said nothing but pointed at a button on the running thing before returning to the apparently customary imitation of a monk reflecting on something like the benefits of fat-free lettuce!
I stepped onto the contraption and gave the button a few cheerful prods before turning to the monk and winking in a “We are all comrades in the search for fitness” way. The contraption whirred into action and I got the Mackintosh feet moving with commendable enthusiasm but still I found the machine moving faster and faster to the point where my hands could no longer reach the controls. At last, despite the very best of efforts I was thrown off the back of the machine, knocking over a passing lady to whom I had not been formally introduced as I did so. “Macintosh” I said to remedy this lapse, while extending my hand in her direction, but she glared at me suggesting she had no wish to develop our acquaintanceship!
As I was attempting to rise to my feet a disturbingly trim gentleman, wearing a badge to show he held a position of responsibility, suggested I collect my stuff and leave the premises without delay. “Of course, of course” I said, adding, “Perhaps fitness is not for everyone!” He did not reply emphasising that conversation is seldom explored in that place, as well as thoughts about carrot cake which is what I consoled myself with at the pub sited conveniently across the road.