• Confessions of a Community College Dean

    In which a veteran of cultural studies seminars in the 1990s moves into academic administration and finds himself a married suburban father of two. Foucault, plus lawn care.

Title

The One With Nudity

I use the gym on campus, since it's cheap and convenient to work. It's nicer than some private health clubs I've seen locally, and it seems like a nice 'campus loyalty' thing to do.

All of which is fine, but...

Well,

It's hard to be appropriately deanly after showering, standing in the locker room in the altogether drying off, when faculty colleagues walk in. “Hi, DD!” Uh, hi...

March 23, 2009
 

I use the gym on campus, since it's cheap and convenient to work. It's nicer than some private health clubs I've seen locally, and it seems like a nice 'campus loyalty' thing to do.

All of which is fine, but...

Well,

It's hard to be appropriately deanly after showering, standing in the locker room in the altogether drying off, when faculty colleagues walk in. “Hi, DD!” Uh, hi...

I'm not one of those guys who makes a point of just shooting the breeze while feeling the breeze. (I once belonged, briefly, to a gym habituated by some men who thought there was nothing better than hanging out in the locker room and discoursing earnestly on matters various and sundry while airing it all out. By contrast, I belong to the “dude, seriously...” school.) My economy of motion in getting from 'exposed' to 'not exposed' is almost Taylorist. And I don't care so much about being seen, say, tying a tie. But there's still an interval when there's just no getting around the fact of not really wanting to be seen.

Some of my admin colleagues have mentioned not using the campus gym for precisely that reason. They think it's tough to maintain an appropriate distance after being seen in all their glory. Admittedly, there's something to be said for that.

But that would be admitting defeat. And when you're supporting four people on a single community college salary, the prospect of paying for a private gym membership out of nothing more than modesty just seems a little tough to justify.

Wise and worldly readers – have you found a tolerable way to handle the post-shower dash at the campus gym?

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