It's summer in Los Angeles, and at Exercise Class, the temperature is rising. You see, there is no air conditioner at Slimmons, just a giant fan in the wall.
Lately, because of issues of foot, I've been advised not to wear sneakers to class, but instead to buy a pair of athletic sandals and use them. I found out about Mesphisto Shoes shortly after receiving these orders, and found the perfect pair of ugly sandals for class. The only issue is that, amazingly, my feet sweat in the sandals and stick, and I've become a sock-with-sandals kind of gal again. Although I used to do it all the time, the "look" was kind of beaten out of me over the past few years in deference to fashion, and it's odd to think back on the last time I had an issue with sweaty feet.
It was, I think, summer, 2007. I had bought new sneakers and was really proud of them. Instead of being all leather uppers, they had a mesh material that I thought would be cooler for the warm months. That turned out not to be true in a big way. Even with the holes in the mesh, the fact that they were a polyester fabric meant that they held the heat in, and my feet were incredibly hot and sticky and stinky. and I thought, the obvious solution to this problem was baby powder.
The next class, I poured the powder onto my feet, and added a little dash into my socks for good measure. Put my shoes on over it, and left for class really proud of myself that I had been so resourceful.
Richard put the music on... we started to dance. Things heated up as usual except things weren't going as usual. The hardwood floor, that night, for some reason seemed to be extra slippery. At first it was only a little, so I didn't really pay attention. But later in the class, I went skidding across this one spot and was convinced that somebody had spilled water there. I stopped, looked at the floor... it was completely dry. But I did notice something a little odd. The point where I went skidding seemed to be a slightly different color than the rest of the floor, and a duller finish too. I decided to walk over there, oblivious to what the rest of the class was doing, to investigate.
That's when I noticed it. Head down looking at the floor, I realized that with each step I took, a little puff of baby powder was showering out of the front of my shoes. Oy vey! Mesh did not keep the powder where it belonged, and the problem with the floor was that I had covered it in powder!
Embarassed, I headed for the bathroom to address the issue. I actually skidded through the powder-spot even after I knew it was there, but continued to the back anyway. The one good thing about having Crohns Disease is that nobody questions me when I head to the bathroom at awkward times. It's just business at usual at Slimmons.
In the back, I realized that the powder had so permeated my socks that there was no wearing them. I took them off, rolled them into a small ball, and threw them out. (They were pretty worn anyway.) I put my shoes back on and started out to class, but realized that I was still showering powder with each and every step. But since the amount of powder also diminished as I walked, I figured that I'd be ok.
As I stepped through the door back into the classroom, Richard had the group doing a step that required them to first walk and then slide sideways. I watched in horror as Kiki transversed the floor with ease (she's a Pilates Teacher), then hit the spot that I had polluted with power. WHOOPS! She went skidding across it like it was ice! I don't think she quite believed what happened - especially since she didn't fall - so when Richard started the class back off in the other direction, WHOOPS! She hit that spot and skidded again. My heart was in my throat at this point, but Kiki's natural athletic abilities seemed to be in play. She never really lost balance, even as her face belayed the panic she must have been feeling inside.
Fortunately, Richard moved on to another move fairly quickly, and I took my spot up again. I was terribly uncomfortable, afraid that I would take a nose dive in my own baby powder at any moment, but actually remained upright during the entire class.
When it was over, I went to Judy and half embarrassed, half amused, told her the story and asked for something to clean the spot up with. I didn't want anyone else hurt by my foibles. But Judy told me not to worry about it... she'd take care of it herself and I should just head on home. I felt a little bad not to clean that spot up, but I did what I was told.
Apparently, Judy must not have addressed the issue. For about three weeks, anyone who hit that spot slid like there was ice on the floor. To my knowledge, nobody fell, but that was during the classes I took. Who knows what was going on in the times that I was not there?
Eventually, either Judy washed the floors on her own volition, something happened that caused it to be addressed (although I kept asking about it and was assured that nothing untoward occured), or, most likely, over time, the powder disbursed on it's own.
But I did not wait that long to address my own issue. The very next day, I went out and bought all leather upper sneakers. And I never used baby powder again.