At Bikram Yoga, every single day -- without variation -- the Matron practices yoga side by side, mat to mat, with a man somewhat older than she is. Let's call him Dear Slightly Older Guy. The Matron and DSOG have sweated together for nearly a year now. They commiserate. They monitor the heat. They foster one another's bad habits. They groan and roll eyes in predictable ways. In sum, they have a relationship, cemented through this year of yoga, side-by-side. DSOG is single, quirky. He lives with his sister. That phrase (he lives with his sister) says much when it applies to a 58 year old man. He is retired from construction work and largely spends his time at yoga, doing odd jobs, pursuing the odd interest here and there. He's pretty much broke. In sum, he is not - as the ladies might put it -- a "CATCH." But he has a good heart and the Matron adores him and their yoga chatter.
But today! The Matron moved her mat across the room!!!
She has her reasons and shares them with him before the class starts. Whispering. Because they are not supposed to talk, but of course, they do. Daily.
Matron: "I'm trying to be less rigid. More flexible."
DSOG: "Flexible up here. . . in the psyche, right?"
Matron: "Yes - I'm too stuck on routine."
DSOG: "You know what people are going to think, don't you?"
Matron: (having never considered that anyone was going to think anything about this at all): "No, what?"
DSOG: "That we're having an affair and we're fighting. Or broke up."
Matron: "You're insane. Nobody's thinking that."
DSOG: "Nope. That's what people are thinking. They are totally thinking we're having an affair. But there's trouble"
Matron: "I can tell you with absolute assurance that not one woman in that locker room --- not one -- thinks that we are having an affiar."
DSOG (disappointed): "Not one? Maybe it's a guy thing?"
Matron: "I don't know. Shall we survey the locker rooms? Find out who thinks that the reason I MOVED MY MAT is because I'm having an affair. First conclusion, obviously.
DSOG (slight pause, consideration): "I think I'm good, Mary. No need for that survey thing."
Matron: "Just keep me posted on our relationship status, as other people perceive it."
DSOG: "You got it."
And they were good.