I started Pilates class about 4 weeks ago. My first lesson was strange in that I was amazed by how unfriendly everyone was. Not one of them said ‘hello’ or asked how I was or who I was or anything like that. They’re all middle-aged and middle-class and they talk over each other about “Pippa’s law degree” and “our upcoming trip to Tuscany”. Consequently, every week when we’re standing on our mats ready to begin, the others chat amongst themselves in groups of two and three and I just stand there retying the cord on my linen trousers and replaiting my hair. The class itself is great and I like the tutor too so I will persevere and I suppose I should thank my lucky stars that I don’t got involved in conversations with the other ladies. It’s like an upper class version of Loose Women when they get going. Not for me, thank you.
This lack of civility caused an awkward situation to occur the other day though. I was in the pub when I saw one of my fellow Pilates princesses. The one in question is quite manly, with a gruff voice and an odd habit of twisting her mouth when she talks. She doesn’t seem to be in the Pilates clique either, usually disappearing as soon as the class ends, whereas the others dawdle, sipping on bottles of Evian and comparing the amount of oral bullshit they can each produce.
I saw the Butch One in the pub the other day. We did that thing where we glanced at each other, there was a spark of recognition and we looked back, only for neither of us to actually acknowledge the other in any way. I could’ve styled this out if it had only happened once, saying something about not recognising her when she’s not sitting cross-legged on a yoga mat. However, as the weekend wore on, I saw her EVERY night and no smile or nod of the head was exchanged. The only option I now have is to ignore her at every opportunity. No wonder the Pilates group aren’t the friendliest of people.
There is actually one woman who has spoken to me briefly (usually to comment on how fat she is / thin I am) but, hey, at least she bothers to crack a smile. Last night, we were in the Mermaid pose (sitting on the floor, arms reaching up and stretching over our heads) when she lets out a belting fart. This must happen a lot because everyone pretended that they didn’t hear / care. I closed my eyes, biting furiously on my bottom lip, as the immature, giggly girl inside me threatened to escape and ruin the relaxing atmosphere of the class.
So, now I can’t even strike up an allegiance with her. Don’t want people to think I befriend farty old ladies on a regular basis, do I?