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doing the right thing

The local municipal pool is home to lap-swimmers; men and women who are able to coast through fifty laps every day, a hundred. Unlike some who can only manage fourteen before the mind rebels and demands re-entry into the real world.

The four men in the changing room are discussing why it is that they all have suntans on the front of their bodies when none of them do any sun baking, ever. Brown on the back is ok, that’s the bit in the sunshine when you’re swimming freestyle.

‘Reflected off the tiles in the bottom of the pool,’ sez a stork-legged sixty-five year old who’s admiring the width of his shoulders in a mirror. He’s the hundred lap-a-day man. Shoulders like Chesty Bond. Legs like sticks.

‘We look like them Muslims.’

This from a man who appears to have swallowed a watermelon, whole.

‘Nothing wrong with that,’ said a voice from inside a closed shower stall, ‘as long as you do the right thing.’

They all laughed.


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