Squats! Who doesn’t love ’em??? I’m in the pocket, hitting the bottom of a rep, when I hear the local soccer mom chapter murmur admiringly as they watch me. One of them brings a smile to my face as she says, “Look at them HONEYdews…” I push up, when suddenly I hear the door to the gym bang open. I almost fall to my knees as torrents of BO wash through the air. My vision is hazing with dark spots and flickers of light as I rack the barbell. I’m damn near coughing up a lung. I turn around and see five Social Justice Warriors, loudly proclaiming that working out is a body-shaming microaggression that will no longer be tolerated. I try to stagger to the other end of the gym so I can ignore these crazies and maybe work in some upper body, but they lock on me, screaming spittle-laced profanities out from their metal-ringed faces, their flamboyantly dyed hair bouncing above pitted, acne-scarred cheeks. I sink to my knees, unable to focus; waves of stupidity are unspooling my mind…common sense is a long-lost dream…the ability to get anything done without checking off a multi-volume checklist of political sensitivities is now the reality…. “Please,” I whisper. “I just want to work out.” Their voices combine into a discordant howl; the can-toi are coming, the Beams are breaking (that’s Dark Tower for any of you that are philistines! 🙂 ) and my mind is consumed by a terrible vision of a single, burning red eye. In desperation, I open my eReader to Echo. Magic flash. A proton pack appears before me. I sling it onto myself with trembling hands and let loose on the Social Justice Warriors. Instead of blazing particles, it emits…protein shake? The Social Justice Warriors are doused, and they begin screaming like vampires in sunlight. They shriek at the horror of possibly building a muscle or being able to move a weight. I’m hosing them down, my lips curled back in a snarl. They flee out of the gym, sobbing and wailing, vanquished for today.