Thursday, July 11, 2013

No. 329 – Mayonaise

Performer: Smashing Pumpkins
Songwriters: Billy Corgan, James Iha
Original Release: Siamese Dream
Year: 1993
Definitive Version: Still Becoming Apart EP, 2000

When Siamese Dream came out in 1993, I made a tape of most of the album that I listened to at the gym. Back then, this song was a song that filled the tape, serving as a bridge between the really good stuff at the beginning of the album and at the end.

It wasn’t until I heard the acoustic more-or-less demo version years later that I realized what a great song this is. And so it was that it became a frequent play at the gym for a second time.

After Debbie and I moved into our house, I had to find a new gym, because the old ones were a little too far of a drive to entice me to visit as regularly as I should. Fortunately, another Bally’s location was close by, and that location—near the corner of Rt. 161 and Cleveland Avenue—became my gym for the rest of the time I lived in Columbus.

My favorite gyms always have been those that have tracks. I like to finish with a walk while I listen to something mellow after rocking and working out hard, and I like a track better than just a treadmill. I particularly liked the ones at UM-Flint and the Bally’s in Westlake, Ohio, because they were raised above the workout floor, which was kind of cool.

The track at my last Columbus Bally’s was huge—I think an eighth-mile—and all of the equipment was in the middle of the oval. At each corner was enough of a triangle of space for two people to loosen up, so I’d start there, putting my Walkman on the window sill while I stretched. Then it was time to plug in and get on the stationary bike for 10 minutes to get the heart pumping. Then I’d hit the weights, then the bike again and finally the walk.

But the best part of that gym was its location. It was close to the house. It was close to my apartment after I moved out. It was easy to get to from Dad’s house. It also was close to just about everywhere I’d want to go if I had an errand to run, like my favorite card stores and a bunch of restaurants that became Carried Out fodder. (For example, if you’re in Columbus, check out Yanni’s Greek Grill and get the chicken gyros. You can thank me later.)

It also was close to this brand-new, fancy-looking strip club called Dockside Dolls. Hmmm, I might have to check that place out some time …

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