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Then everything stopped. There was no sound, no movement. The smell of sweat was gone and all my ambition to destroy my body ebbed away. As she walked in the gym, I knew that the day had finally come.
I had first noticed this girl at the beginning of the fall semester but had always been too shy to approach her. That was quite odd, as I had never been the shy type. Never in my life could I remember being too scared to start a conversation with someone. At some point during the semester, in my infinite wisdom, I decided that I should let her come to me. My logic went that if she were interested in me, she would start a conversation with me. Of course she would never be nervous about approaching me; only idiots are uncomfortable starting conversations with complete strangers.
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She headed my way, apparently to use the leg-extension machine, which was located right next to me. As I stared, I noticed the way she walked. Actually, it was not so much a walk as a glide. She glided across the room, blonde hair flowing, blue eyes shining, and approached the machine directly to my left.
Despite my newfound confidence that this would be the day, that today I would have a conversation with this ellusive girl of my dreams, I almost fell over when she spoke to me. "I think that of all the machines here, this is my least favorite," she said. It wasn't exactly the best possible situation I could have imagined, but at least she had finally spoken to me. She hadn't admitted that she had been watching my every move for over a semester now; she hadn't asked me out that weekend. But it was a start nonetheless. My infallible instinct suggested that humor would be the best response in this situation. "My least favorite is the thigh-abduction machine, because it makes me feel like I'm giving birth!" I replied. Instead of laughing, as any normal person would have at such a witty remark, she scowled and replied, "How would you know what that's like?" Apparently my previously unfailing instinct had bent wayward without my knowledge. Attempting to save face, I answered, "I wouldn't know. But a girlfriend of mine once said that it made her want to do Lamaze!" Now her scorn was extremely apparent. Apparently too offended to reply, she turned away so quickly that her long hair flew away from her shoulders several inches.
Regardless of her obvious anger with me, which I never saw the cause of, I still watched her out of the corner of my eye as she began her leg curls. She was incredible! All her movements were smooth as silk. Her skin was perfect, porcelain. Her long, thin face complemented her body exceptionally well, especially with that blue shade of eyeliner. Her red gym shirt and black mesh shorts were both obviously chosen for comfort, yet they still managed to flatter her figure. I didn't know why I found her so attractive. Other guys thought she was "cute" or "not bad." I decided that I was lucky other guys looked past her, as I certainly wasn't winning her over at the moment and didn't need the competition. She finished her leg curls, and despite her previous anger with me she apparently decided that I deserved one more chance to win her fancy. She said, "So I've seen you in a few of my classes. You're Joe, right?" She knew my name at least. That couldn't be a bad thing. "Yes, yes I am." I believed that repeating "yes" would surely impress her, that it would lend me an air of sophistication. Unfortunately, however impressed she was with my affirmation of identity, she just stood there, expecting me to say more. My once infallible instinct was telling me to ask her name, to say that I had seen her in class, to say something that required a response. But I knew I couldn't trust instinct anymore. I decided that the often-forgotten method of avoidance would be best in this situation. So I continued by saying, "If you'll excuse me, I have some more curls to do," and turned away from her.
Oddly enough, this did not inspire the effect I had hoped for. She did not beg me to quit working out, to talk with her. She did not get down on her knees and beseech me to continue our conversation. She merely frowned, turned away, and walked directly out the door. At that point I realized that intentionally offending one's intended mate was not the most intelligent course of action. There went the perfect form, the incredible face, and the mind that had seemed to be quite sharp in class.
As I replayed the scenario in my mind, I spotted all the foolish mistakes I had made. I realized that my entire approach did not need repair. Instead, only a few small details of my style needed tweaking. I knew for sure that the next girl to come my way would be mine.