Wednesday, March 20, 2013
You Can't Keep A Good Equinox Down
22 years ago, more or less to the day, I treated myself to a Spring Equinox pamper moment.
To celebrate the beginning of the solar year, I whizzed off to a sauna, there to languish in the heat of a wood-panelled sub-Scandanavian Nirvana. And write poetry.
Don’t ask me why I thought writing poetry in a sauna had anything to do with the arrival of Spring — it just did, okay? As celebratory plans go, it was infinitely better than shaving my legs, drilling my initials onto my teeth, or potato printing the runes from Frodo Baggins’ ring on the inside of my epididymis.
Or was it?
The moment I presented myself at the sauna, armed with my Winnie the Pooh notebook and matching pen, I realised I’d made a mistake. Everything about the advertisement for Lady Helga’s Finnish Titty Witty Loveliness Bar suggested the dry 40 degree heat of the Sahara. Instead, I found a steam-filled wet room.
It’s at times like these that you get to discover a little about yourself, like “am I tenacious and determined — or merely fucking stupid?”
Opting for all three choices, I stepped into the steamy cubicle and took out my Winnie the Pooh notebook and pen. Within no time at all, the pages of my notebook dissolved into a cardboard soup and the only legible mark left by my pen was a trail of 37 conjoined hyphens running from my fingers to halfway down my leg.
That’s when the trio of tattooed young guys appeared from out of the hot, almost sensually alive mist and inseminated me with their innuendo. I’m no stranger to being the wrong person in the wrong place at the wrong time, but back then I wasn’t so deft at being a fish out of water (even though there was plenty of water around and I was definitely not a fish), and instead of running away, I ended up spending the better part of an hour trying to explain the difference between Bukowsky and Auden. Believe me, if you’re ever offered a toss-up when it comes to being discovered writing poetry in a sweaty wet room with just the thinnest of towels concealing your dangly wanglies, you should plump for the brusque and mocking rugby lads over the “we’re regulars in this obviously gay sauna” guys every time.
Lady Helga’s Finnish Titty Witty Loveliness Bar?
Heavens, how slow I was back in 1991...