Gary Sweet was my swimming teacher in the early 90s

Photo: Spicyonion

An ex-colleague of mine, Bonnie, was a pool attendant in the 90s. He talked fondly of the position; halcyon days, simpler times, all sprayed with chlorinated water and discount confectionary from the pool kiosk. Apparently, the only real downside to the job was monitoring the sauna for ‘unsavoury behaviour’ and, of course, the usual problems with acute tinea and chlamydia. 

One day, I was having lunch at my desk, when Bonnie sidled over to me and said: “Gary Sweet was my swimming teacher in the early 90s”. I had no idea who Gary Sweet was, so I lifted my head up from an awkward chicken pie moment and told him that I once had a parking altercation with the lead singer of Dexys Midnight Runners. A weird stalemate developed where neither of us knew which story was better. That’s when our boss chimed in with a story about dating Sting’s cousin’s daughter.

Later that day, Bonnie wondered if Gary Sweet would remember him if they ever met on the street. I asked him if he’d done anything out of the ordinary during the swimming lessons that would be memorable to Gary, and he said no, he hadn’t. But then he smiled and said: “Yes he would remember me! Because back then, my last name was Beaver!”

I’ve since watched Gary act, and it’s unsavoury for all the wrong reasons. Definitely not sauna material.

Viewer discretion advised: this clip contains scenes from the mid 90s.