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Two nose-related stories. So without further ado. . .

Lately, I've been having nosebleeds left and - well, mostly left. It started during my week-long battle with a flu that kept me in bed the whole of last week. I was woken up from an afternoon nap by a clogged left nostril, so I picked up the rag I was using for a handkerchief and blew my nose.

Imagine my surprise when I saw gobs of blood on the rag. I wasn't really shocked since I was used to my nose bleeding at the oddest of times, so I just plugged the hole with TP and went back to bed.

The past few days, though, the same nostril's been doling out the blood like a faucet. Just yesterday, I ended up wasting a brand-new handkerchief because I was gushing as if there was no tomorrow. A friend actually told me off when I was telling her about my plans to gym later in the evening, since I did just come from a sickness. This morning, though, after another episode of gooey geyser, I used the office bathroom's mirror to peer up my nose.

Dab smack in the outer wall of the nostril was this long black strip of what looked like hardened black animal skin. There was a wound scabbing over, apparently, and every time I picked what I thought was a booger, the scab would come loose and bring forth another red harvest to stain whatever nose-blowing implement I may have nearby.

I was pretty early at the gym this evening. I was thinking that finally, I'd be able to gym and get home before it was too dark. The problem I didn't anticipate was that when I got to Slimmer's World in Trafalgar Square, the entire place was packed to the rafters with every gym rat and his mother.

Normally, that wouldn't be a problem, since you could take turns with anybody on the machines, and there were plenty of free weights scattered throughout the workout area. The irksome part came when I signed up for the treadmills. All of the machines were booked for the next two cycles. So if I signed up for cardio, I would have to wait for an entire hour - which was the time I usually arrived at Slimmer's anyway, which kinda made my early arrival a useless gesture.

So instead of waiting for a free treadmill, I hiked to the workout area's second floor and got on one of the stationary bikes. Now, the thing with me and bikes is that the last time I rode a bike (stationary or otherwise) was six years ago at least. Unlike running, I didn't know what to anticipate and I had no idea of how I should pace myself.

There was this neat little dial thing sticking out the front end of the bike that adjusted the difficulty of your workout. Me being the clueless idiot that I am put the dial on "15," which I found out was pretty high up on the scale. After two minutes of duking it out with a bike that refused to move without the application of gargantuan force, I lowered the handicap to ten, and finished fifteen minutes' worth of cardio exercise.

I had no idea stationary bikes could be that intense. My feet were wigging out on me as I climbed down the stairs, and I had a hard time getting a full breath of air. Still do, as a matter of fact. Today, I learned a lesson. Stationary bikes are perfect for insane folks like me who don't know what the hell it is they're doing.


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