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Our health club is a no wink zone

Health-ClubThere was turmoil in the health club today.

One of the guys I work out with got called on the carpet for winking at a woman. She didn’t like it and reported him to the staff. There are eight of us guys who work out together and Planet Fitness threatened to kick us all out of the gym.

That’s not right. But I don’t know if winking at a woman is a federal offense either. There is a fine line between being friendly and a creeper. My friend is not a creeper. He is a winker.

He even winks at me while telling a joke.

A woman gave me her phone number and offered drinks at a local watering hole. I was not offended. I was flattered. I would never report her to the staff.

Our gym is a friendly place for the most part. People offer to help you get buffed and lose weight. They don’t hit on you. They are being nice.

But there are creepers in the place. They are men who look at women’s butts and cleavage while practically drooling. Women don’t like those guys and I don’t blame them. They complain privately about those guys but have not issued a complaint.

I admit that I look briefly at someone I like but I do not drool with my mouth open. And I also do not wink.

My trainer Melissa was surprised that someone reported the Winker. I am not because of all the drama surrounding Harvey Weinstein, Roy Moore and a number of other Hollywood celebrities concerning sexual harrassment. The days of men doing what they want with women should be over.

I think the woman that reported The Winker got caught up in that and decided to stand her ground. But The Winker would never touch her butt or do anything inappropriate. I think he was just being nice and flashed an innocent wink.

My question for women is what is appropriate behavior in the gym and do you believe the Winker crossed that line?

I don’t believe he did. But I could be wrong on this one.

 

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Sexual harassment in dressing room

One of the low points of my journalism career came early in my career.

I was a fresh face 25-year-old at the Detroit Free Press covering minor league baseball for the paper.

Do you know what I did?

Nothing. And that’s the problem.

I was inside the Toledo Mud Hens dressing room at the Lucas County Fair grounds where the Mud Hens played. A female reporter from Syracuse came into the dressing room before a game and I was immediately told by one of the players that she was a bitch and deserved what was coming to her.

I nodded my head and watched the juvenile behavior of one of the players.

He followed her around flipping his penis at her as the entire dressing room broke out in laughter. I laughed too but later regretted it.

I was too afraid to say something and I bought too easily into the “she deserved what she was about to get” story. She was professional and moved from player to player trying to get her story.

She ignored the player who was moving his hips in a sexual manner, trying to get her attention and the attention of the boys in the room. Women put up with more crap than their male counter parts in our business and this woman was being laughed at and was called names I would not call my worst enemy.

The boys were having a grand ol’ time at her expense. I’d like to think I would handle the situation different later in my career. I challenged players that made fun of reporters because of their youth, sex, race and the way they asked questions.

This time I lacked the courage to do something. I figured they were not bothering me and let me inside of their little joke so I had nothing to worry about. It was the wrong attitude to have and I learned that over the years.

This player pretended to masturbate behind this woman before he shrugged and went back to his dressing stall to prepare for the game.

The room laughed and roared but the real winner was the female reporter who never let on that she knew what was going on and eventually got her story.

It would take a while but I felt like a real loser. I laughed too but worst of all I let it happen and kept my mouth shut.

 

 

 

 

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