LIVING LIFE: Broke My Back Mountain
I’ve been a little stressed out lately.
Nothing more than usual. I’ve just been feeling more frustrations at work, with our finances, and with all the “Glee” Emmy nominations.
You know, typical stuff.
Normally, I can deal with life’s simple struggles without breaking stride, but here recently I’ve been incapable of handling even the most insignificant issues.
So when my Wife and I were making plans to celebrate our first wedding anniversary a couple of weeks ago, she was determined to find me some rest and relaxation. She pitched a weekend retreat to a resort up in the mountains that included a couples’ massage and spa package.
At first I was hesitant because I’ve never really been into the whole intimate massage scene. But when I found myself screaming at an old man because he wasn’t taking a right hand turn at a stop light as quickly as I would have liked, I knew that these were desperate times calling for similar measures.
Besides, I had gotten a massage once before a couple of years ago, and it wasn’t completely terrible – despite the fact that it violated every rule I steadfastly maintain in regards to protecting my personal space.
When my Wife and I got to the massage place (is it a “place”? Salon? Parlor?), a woman with a heavy French accent greeted us and took us to our massage room. She invited us to sit in a steam room for a few minutes and that they would be back to give us our massages (more on “they” in a moment).
ME: So we just go sit in the steam room?
MY WIFE: Yeah. What’s wrong?
ME: What do you do in there? Just sit?
MY WIFE: Yes, it’s supposed to be relaxing?
ME: Well, what do you wear? Your clothes will get wet if you’re just sitting there in steam.
(If you can’t already tell, I am painfully new to all of this)
MY WIFE: You don’t wear anything.
ME: WHAAAAT? You just sit there… naked… doing nothing… just looking at each other?
MY WIFE: It’s supposed to be romantic.
ME: Are you supposed to do… something in there? How is that any fun? It’s already way too hot and steamy in.
It’s a minor miracle that she stayed married to me for an entire year.
After five minutes of us sitting in the steam room in all of our awkward glory, we dried off and the woman returned to get us set up for our massages.
To measure what kind of intensity we wanted, she said she was going to squeeze our necks with her hand and then we would tell her if we wanted more or less pressure. She then proceeded to give us each a Vulcan death grip and after we picked ourselves up from the floor, we both told her that we wanted less pressure.
A lot less pressure.
She laughed one of those evil villain laughs and said “they” would return in a minute to begin. In a moment of panic, I pawned my Wife off to Annie Wilkes and ran to the other table, knowing that whoever came in couldn’t be any worse.
I’ve been wrong before, but I have never been quite this wrong.
Like from some terrifying horror film, the door slowly opened and a hulking beast of a man walked in. His name was “Steve” and he looked like a henchmen from a 1980’s Sly Stallone movie. He was wearing short gym shorts and a tank top with muscles bulging out of his muscles.
Based on the pressure the French lady applied to my kneck, my very first thought looking at him was, “Well, I had a good run.”
Like I said earlier, my only memory of a massage wasn’t that bad. As much as I didn’t like being touched all over, it was genuinely relaxing on the whole.
This experience would be defined as the opposite of that.
Steve crunched and crushed every bone he could find in my body. I kept trying to remember the secret war plans that had I had apparently been brainwashed with so that I could give them up and end this torment.
At one point he pressed down on my back so hard that I legitimately saw my soul trying to escape out of my physical frame. The crazy thing is that I didn’t try to stop it.
My Wife sauntered out of her massage relaxed and rejuvenated. I limped out and, weeks later, still have nightmares.
MY WIFE: So, do you feel any better?
ME: Well, I’m too broken and sore to feel stressed and angry.
MY WIFE: Mission accomplished.