Friday, March 22, 2013

Broke & Broken out, but not straight up Broken
Almost three years here and almost every time I head out the door, I have to remember that people don't speak English here. Three years. You would think I'd have gotten the hang of that aspect by now.

Things at the fancy gym are going badly again. My boss is not impressed enough with my number of clients per class to buy me cheap elastic bands, but I stubbornly stuck with my choreography and figured I'd improvise with jump ropes. Bad idea. Some people had light ropes, some had heavy weighted ones, and a bunch had these light weight poles with tubes tied to one side. Two people threatened to walk out after the first song so I apologized and we did the rest of the class without equipment; but ten minutes later they left anyway. They said it was too difficult for them. One lady got up during the final stretch and then just stood at the periphery of the room staring at me. She swooped down on me the second I switched the music off to let me know that if I keep making the class so easy for the older people on Friday mornings, she is not going to come anymore. She already gave a negative report to my boss. Ah, that's why he looks unhappy to see me all of the sudden.

My friend Shilpa was really nice about it afterwards. She loves the classes so it is a joy when she is there. Then this other nice student named Giovanna sent me a text to tell me not to get discouraged and she called the complaining lady a schema which means she thinks she is a dummy face and makes me happy in a naughty way.

Then the swim teacher showed me that not only is there a computer tracking program where I am supposed to log the attendance numbers, but there is a suggested (high) number next to it of how many people they want to take the class. If my numbers are sub par, they might not renew my contract. So far I have not made the quota for two classes in a row. It is also not a good sign that the boss didn't want to meet with me so he sent the swim teacher to do it. This guy is a pretty crappy communicator anyway. There is an ad floating around saying that next Wednesday is Fashion metamorfosi night. My class is called metamorfosi, but I wasn't sure how I entered into this whole "fashion" concept. He told me the PR people made it up, but the PR person told me me that he made it up and then forgot he did it. I bought a tee shirt that says Fashion on it, which I am sharing custody of with T because she likes that is it is held together with safety pins, just in case. Since everyone forgot about the event, I will probably end up doing a class with a corny theme that nobody comes to because they are serving alcohol downstairs beforehand.

T has the possibility to go on a two day class trip to Trieste. Her math professoressa was disappointed that I didn't want to give my permission for her to go on a five hour bus trip to not sleep in a room crowded with noisy non-sleeping girls. T's stomach never did love a long car ride. I don't like the idea of her being far away if any problems should arise with her insulin or insulin pump. Anyway, her professoressa asked my permission to call her doctor who said it woud be fine for T to go on the trip. It was sweet that the professoressa wanted her not to feel excluded, but in the end T doesn't really seem to want to go. Her closest friends aren't even in her same class at school. So night of no one sleeping averted for now.

 There have been more rounds of the flu in Lucca this winter than Mike Tyson took to win the WBC heavyweight title in '86. So many of my lessons have been canceled that all the shopping I can do for the foreseeable future is on-line where I fill up the baskets with stuff and then delete it when they ask for payment information. It is tons of fun, until I remember that with fantasy shopping the stuff you buy doesn't really exist.

After eating more flaxseed powder mixed with peanut butter than any normal human being would ever want to do for over three weeks, I have learned that it's acne curing effects stop working over time, once your body gets used to the lowered testosterone levels. Now I have a new cure for my acne cysts which is Saw Palmetto mixed with stinging nettles. This is my last hope because they don't have a birth control pill on the market in Italy that doesn't run a high risk of thrombosis and is an androgen blocker. Their most popular brand was taken off the market in Germany and their second most popular brand was taken off the market in the Unite States. At least instead of eating gooey flour mixtures, I now just have a capsule to swallow along with a vitamin drink of A, zinc, and bromelaine to lessen inflammation. Despite all of these efforts, I had to do that really humiliating class with a huge zit on my nose and my self esteem at a real low.

 My dear friend Giusy has gotten a promotion that means she will move to Rome. Our mutual friend Serena suggested that the best way to celebrate would be to go to the spa at the fancy gym because it has been raining here non-stop for at least two months and so we can't count on going to the sea. It is good because I don't have to pay for some of the spa treatments, which include a walk through different temperature water and saunas and such, but it is bad because I don't really want to be in a bikini with a poorly concealed zit on my nose and a face full or acne scars in front of any of my coworkers. My living is all about appearances and it appears that my plan to never exit the house again until I have watched all past seasons of Shameless on the Internet and drink more cups of tea with honey than even Winnie the Pooh could stomach, may not be realistic.

Speaking of TV, ever since we got the bill from the TV police, I started begging F to hide the television. He got so sick of me that he shlepped it to the trunk of our car until he could get it to Melissa's house. Then he painted over the walls and hid the cables. I have dreaded the tv tax here the way some people avoid rectal thermometers, and I don't want to start paying for something we don't use. My friend Gabriella who works at the comune di Lucca is going to see if there is some form I can file with the city to show that I am not a television user. I am a complete thief of American television shows on-line, youtube songs and pinterest recipes, but that doesn't even count. I am the Robin Hood of popular culture and proud of it.

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