Jacked and Tan.

According to Websters dictionary the definition of the above is:

Every mans goal for the summer. This usually involves spending at least 2 and a half hours at the beach wearing tanning oil and spending a vast majority of the day at the gym.

How correct you are dear Webster.  The Jacked and Tan craze has taken over the world and that means yes, even Japan.  As we can clearly see in the definition above, unless you’re black and workout in a park, and if so that’s awesome and please have a nice day, a gym membership is required to be taken seriously.

Herein lies the problem: Japan plus gym memberships. Or rather, Japanese men and gym memberships, or ever more specifically Japanese men and their total lack of gym locker room etiquette.

There, I said it: Japanese guys spend a lot of time looking at dicks and walking around with theirs out in the locker room.

International Standards

I’ve been naked all over the world.

I mean, naked.

A fair amount of this nakedness has transpired in locker rooms. Locker rooms and Handicapped bathrooms, mostly.

Being unclothed is a natural part, in fact some might say an integral part of being human and it is particularly necessary at the gym.  The locker room is where this all occurs so unless you want to be like that effeminate dork who insisted on changing clothes in the coaches off in high school, embracing this aspect of life and mastering some of the rules of locker room etiquette are essential.

….mastering some of the rules of locker room etiquette are essential.

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I’m talking to you, Japan.

1.Choice of Locker

This is a large room which is literally filled with lockers, ten people are in here and you have decided to use the locker directly next to mine?  Wrong.

It’s a lot like when you’re on the train at an off time; plenty of space everywhere, but this guy comes in and stands shoulder to shoulder with you. Now, occasionally, sure, this man is just doing that in order to grope your genitals.  However, other times it’s more benign: he just doesn’t understand he should move to the most remote location possible when other men are undressing.   Choose an area with some pace and move away from me for both our sake’s.

2. No prolonged eye contact

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Maybe I’m walking one way and you another but there’s no reason for us to be staring at each other up to and just before collision.  Why am I staring into your eyes? Good question. But I’m certain that you shouldn’t be deeply staring into mine either so cut that shit out.  Conversely…

3. Don’t completely ignore me

I don’t need you to see the heavens in my eyes, but I also don’t need to be passing by someone and have them pretend like I am not actually there.  We pass each other or are forced, due to crowded conditions, to have lockers near each other, well OK, lets at least nod to one another and then carry on.  We don’t need to hug or high-five but a nod or a glance is comforting and banishes any necessity for us to talk.

4. Don’t hang out naked

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Yes.

Yes, in fact it is bothering me.

You come into the locker room clothed and you leave it this way as well.  But for some reason far, and I mean far, too many Japanese men seem to think the locker room is a magical realm in which they may prance around completely naked for prolonged and uncomfortable amounts of time.  Sure, it’s all just human anatomy, I know, I grew up in Europe, but even then I don’t recall people hanging out texting and playing candy crush totally naked.  Come in, change and then get out.

5. No Phones out of the locker

prohibitedThis should be common sense, really it should, but alas it is not.

There is no reason for you to be wandering around the locker room, naked, with your phone.  Important text message or email? reply to it with your phone in the locker.  No reason for it to come out. While in the locker room we should all be focused on the necessary washing and changing to facilitate our rapid exit for this place.  Anything slowing that down is a no go.  I understand well the necessity of snapping a post workout selfie catching that all elusive pump, which never happens in my gyms because the Japanese don’t know anything about weightlifting; more on this later, but no, just put it away.  We aren’t going to catch any sweet royalties for those greasy pics you’re about to post of us on MeatSpin.com so cut it out and keep the phone stowed away.

6. No Junk Staring

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This is the men’s locker room. By default this means all of us have male genitalia.  Sure, most of yours is oddly under-developed, like me coming out of a thirty minute ice bath, but the basic design specs are all the same. So, is it really necessary for you to stare at my dick like that?

No. No, it isn’t. So stop it, Japan.  I’m not even a shower, I’m a grower.

There’s really no excuse.

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