Owl is a cranky asthmatic writer. The kind of asthmatic where a strenuous walk in high spring when the blossoms have burst from the trees will send her scurrying for an inhaler. She is also has a fierce devotion to pastry. In an effort to keep her lungs working and fit into her pants, Owl dabbles with exercise videos and runs. Well. Other people would consider it a jog crawl. But Owl considers it a run. Occasionally Owl entertains ultra-marathon dreams as she trundles through her couple mile jog, but to be honest her main goal is simpler. She’d like to do a push-up sometime before she dies. One push-up. Maybe even a pull-up.
Mop and Owl met in college. This did not mean they actually talked each other. Owl spent most of her time lurking in the library basement studying. Mop mopped. They had lots of mutual friends but Owl was very fond of her basement prison and rarely left it.
Owl was dimly aware that Mop was the guy who was the human equivalent of a bouncy ball. While Owl plodded across campus huffing under the weight of her backpack, she frequently saw Mop scaling walls, doing handstands, and strolling up and down Very High and Sort of Dangerous Places. Mop has no history.
However, a few years later, Mop and Owl bonded. Owl had a mini-nervous breakdown brought on by too much time in a cubicle and retreated to Kuala Lumpur. Mop came to life to console owl and Mop and Owl ended up compulsively g-chatting.
Throw in some college reunions, and a visit where Owl and Mop went on a two hour run, and then Owl chugged apple cider and spent the rest of the night violently upchucking it while Mop baked apple strudel.
One morning, Owl woke up, looked at her exercise routine and had a fit. No, she thought. No, no, no. Then she added some really mature language like: shitty shitty poo poo pants. The morning stretched into two or three mornings, and then a week, and then two or three weeks. Owl began to panic. Her workout buddy had fled to the hinterlands of Russia. Her boyfriend Peter is deeply suspicious of exercise videos.
Owl called Mop.
“Work out with me,” she demanded.
Mop did what mop does best. Mopping!
And they worked out.