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Travails of a Non-Swimmer

Poolside Manners

Float on a pool

I went to the city pool facility the other day. It’s a public pool but run by a sports club, so it’s not free and every minute counts. In the morning there are aquabics (aqua aerobics) and water relaxation classes for senior citizens, and during the weekends it’s swimming classes for children. In between there are the fitness swimmers and families with Disney tubes and floats.

My session is during that relatively not crowded period between the pool aerobics classes and family swimming time starting late afternoon.

Speedo Lycra Cap


While changing in the locker room a middle-aged woman saw me tying up my hair and putting on a swim cap.

“Are caps required?” she asked me.

“No,” I replied, “but they’re recommended.” I bit my tongue from adding “It’s plain, simple good manners to put on a swim cap in a pool.”

In my gym’s pool swim caps are a requirement, but in the public pool the swim cap rule is not enforced. It should be, though. As I mentioned above, it’s plain good manners. Nobody wants to swim in water floating with some stranger’s dead hair. And if you think of all the other stuff that people carry on their heads—dandruff, lice, hair dyes/sprays/gels, oil, scabs, etc—it’s really icky not to put that all inside a swim cap.

They’re not expensive at all. There really is no reason not to buy one.

Since I am still doing balance drills and tend to drink in water by the gallon, I’m particularly concerned about the cesspool level. It’s already disgusting enough to be inhaling water filled with snot and saliva and dead skin cells and urine/poop residue. Not to mention the tons of chlorine.

So yeah, please, wear a swim cap, whether the pool requires it or not.

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