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Ode to the Pool Guy

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Wildly Exaggerated: Ode to the Pool Guy

Monday, June 6, 2011

Ode to the Pool Guy

I hate to brag, but the fact of the matter is: I live in a way cooler place than you. Like, way WAY cooler. It looks like an Italian villa on the outside, it’s got pretty landscaping…it’s pretty much the best place ever. When I first stepped into the unit I ultimately ended up buying, it was love at first sight. So much natural light! Such lovely dark hardwood floors! Such a pretty view to the pool!

Ah yes. The pool. When I stood in that living room, in February of 2007, I was looking out onto a quiet, pristine, landscaped area with a huge, clean pool in the middle of it. Ahhhh. It was like an oasis. 3 months later, when it was too late to change my mind, the weather got warm and I discovered what the pool really was at various times of the day:

7-8AM: Lap pool for fitness buffs. No real problem there. They’re pretty quiet.

8-10AM: Mommy and me time! Lazy women bring their angry children to scream and yell and splash while they talk on their cell phones. Charming.

10AM-5:30PM: Frat party! No fewer than 3 boomboxes compete to see what’s louder: rap, 80s music, or death metal. (Death metal wins.) Meanwhile drunk guys yell “DUDE!” a lot, and women who can barely manage to stay in their miniscule bikinis prance around and pretend they have any reason to be there other than trying to get laid and land a husband. It’s like watching a National Lampoon movie.

5:30-8PM: Couples swim. Most everyone else has left the pool area to go get some dinner, so whichever couple gets there first ends up having the pool to themselves. Sometimes it’s an older couple, sometimes it’s teenagers, but regardless of their ages, they all do the same thing: make out in the pool for an hour or more. Gross. I HAVE WINDOWS AND I CAN SEE YOU, PEOPLE.

2AM: Drunk assholes wander into the pool area from a party somewhere on the property and proceed to throw each other in, make out, fight, and scream in the sound-amplifying courtyard until…

3AM: Someone calls the cops

So yeah. Living by the pool has not been quite so idyllic as I first imagined.

Until now.

A new guy has moved in. I don’t know who he is, and I doubt I’d recognize him if I saw him dry/wearing a shirt. I call him Pool Guy, and that’s all he ever needs to be. He’s the Grand Master of Ceremonies for the pool, and he. Is. Awesome. Every afternoon at 5, I hear his cannonball break the silence, at which point I go to the window and watch him climb out of the pool, go to his cooler, get a cold Bud Light, and start walking the concrete, whipping his wet hair from his face, swigging from the can, and scanning for new arrivals. Whenever someone enters the courtyard, he makes a beeline for them, shakes their hand, and strikes up a lengthy conversation with them. Sometimes he even offers them a beer. After an hour of this, he has completely dried off and finished his beer, so he runs for the pool, does another cannonball, and thus begins another hour of drinking, hand-shaking and chit-chatting.
It may be the most charming thing I’ve ever seen. He’s the Host of the Pool! Anyone who randomly shows up is automatically an invitee to his Pool Party, and it is amazing! There’s beer! There are regularly scheduled cannonballs! There are no boomboxes (because how would you manage to talk?), and no one gets into a fight. When the Pool Host is on duty, it’s pleasant to be at the pool, or even just to live near it.

I may never know why he does what he does - I actually think I prefer it that way - but regardless of his motivation, he is my hero. The world would be a better place if it had more Pool Guys in it, proffering beer and spreading cannonball-splashes of joy everywhere they went. Thank you, Pool Guy, for making the pool awesome again.



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