Man versus Machine: Treadmill at the Gym Edition

Look at my shoes, Treadmill at the gym. They’re one hundred percent pure jackrabbit, kissed by Hermes and treaded with the fresh rubber of unused Formula One tires. They feel like marshmallows against my feet and their venting is so advanced that my toes will be cold when your graph passes peak cardio. These shoes are one of a kind. I made them myself in my garage, working late at night, hunched over a plywood workbench bathed in the fluorescent haze of the kind of cluttered space that feels empty without Conway Twitty playing softly on a little black radio in the corner. Several nights a week for last three years, I squinted into a jeweler’s loupe to craft the intricate genius of these kicks. Obviously they are perfectly in sync with my biomechanics. Do you know why? Because my biomechanics made them. You on the other hand were fabricated in a cold, lifeless factory in Greensboro, pieced together by other machines and workers paid too little to love you. You are filled with wires and beeping. I am filled with resolve and determination. We’ve barely started but I don’t even notice that we’ve started at all, because I can run all day in my shoes.
Going to Incline Level 5
Do you know your biggest mistake, Precor Treadmill? It’s giving me personal cable television with a headphone jack. No force in the universe is so powerful, so adept at advancing time as midday cable programming. Minutes become seconds, seconds become whatever half-seconds are called and half-seconds cease to exist when I’m watching last year’s CSI with Animal Cops on the flip flop. You can change speed and incline all afternoon but I can change channels. The only pain I feel is for the wayward teenager that Dr. Phil is scolding now about getting drunk on hand sanitizer. This really happens. Speaking of hand sanitizer, I am sweating all over you.
Going to Speed 7
Listen to me Precor Treadmill: This is a marathon to me, not some kind of backyard beanbag toss. I can keep this up for days but I doubt your motor would survive. I will give you this – your spongy deck is an immaculate conception. You take the punishing blows of my feet like the firm mattress of a Palm Springs hotel I once stayed at and remember fondly. We stayed up all night in that retro cool room, jumping in time on the bed to Club Nouveau which was a popular band in 1986. Do you remember Club Nouveau? Of course you don’t. Your blueprints hadn’t even been drawn then. You’re also a machine with no concept of present or past popular culture, which I find tragic.
Going to Speed 10
You keep throwing up hurdles but you fail to recognize that I’m a hurdler. This sprint doesn’t frighten me because I know that it’ll be over in 53 blinks of a green LED graph bar, when you’ll flash the words “Cool Down,” which may as well read “I Am Defeat.” I mean that you would say “defeat” instead of “defeated,” because how can you know the difference between a noun and a transitive verb? No one programmed you to know that. All you can do is make me run at various speeds for 30 minutes, but even I told you to start doing that in the first place. I can decide at any time that it should be 20 minutes instead, maybe use those extra ten minutes to pick things up and put them down again in front of a mirror.
Cool Down
You are pathetic. See you Thursday.

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