- I'd have a heart attack on the treadmill.
- I would survive the actual test, but the results would definitively prove I did have a something more than an overactive imagination causing my occasional chest pains.
- I'd survive, have a clean bill of health, but My Love would kick my ass in the time trials.
However, I will not lose to My Love in a foot race.
Sure, she's completed four marathons and one half-marathon in the 17 years we've known each other. She's also kayaked across Long Island Sound while I was sidelined with panic attacks and seasickness. However, on land, in anything under a few thousand yards, she's eating my dust … assuming one creates dust when running under the weight of an imaginary elephant on his back.
No sooner did I stumble out of the torture chamber, uh, stress test room, I came across My Love in the waiting room, sipping on a vitamin water with a wedge of lemon and a little umbrella in it. (I might have been hallucinating from lack of oxygen, but I also think she was using a Crazy Straw.)
"How'd (cough) you (hack) do?" I asked.
"I did well," she said. "Made the 'good health' category."
"So (blech) did (wheeze) I!"
"I could have made 'excellent' but it would have meant two more minutes of torture on that machine."
"Me, too! (groan) Wanna find (ack) a supply closet?"
"So," I asked, "what was your time?"
"I got the 'good' category."
"I know that, but what was your time?"
"I didn't know this was a competition?"
"It's not," I lied. "I'm just curious. I've given up on you ever telling me your weight, so humor me on this one."
"Any time. Now what was your time? I did 22 minutes, 17 seconds. 'Fess up."
After throwing on my "concerned spouse" face and laying it on thicker than Cindy McCain's foundation, she confessed to doing a little more than 17 minutes.
"What?! Women only have to do 17 minutes to qualify for 'good'? What happened to equal rights? Did Bella Abzug wear those horrible hats in vain? I declare reverse sexism! Bi-as! Bi-as!"
But deep down, under the façade of protest and insult, I laughed the laugh of man whose freshly shaved chest was swelling with personal pride. Or cardiac fluid.
Can I get a defib over here, stat? Go to Humor-Blogs.com, register and give me a smiley to jump start my heart and ranking.