Citizen of the Month

the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

I Vow to Move My Ass


Hear Ye, Hear Ye:

This royal decree binds all who sign below.

I, your name here, am one of those “creative types” who would rather sit all day in a hip cafe than workout in a smelly gym. As a wordsmith, I woo others with the brilliance of my words, but have neglected the importance of my calf muscles, forgetting that they are essential for reaching up to the top bookshelf at Barnes and Noble.

As outlined in the previous post, I agree to exercise twice a week for one hour each visit, for one month, starting Monday, May 22nd. If I am not a member of a gym, I agree to do a full exercise routine in or near my home. For each week where my responsibilities are neglected, I will donate twenty dollars to a health-related charity and will humiliate myself on my own blog or in the comment section of this post.

This contract is binding through the power of Google.

As is it written, as it is said.

Bloggers With Biceps (as of 5/22)

Dating Dummy
Edgy Mama
The Yearning Heart
Anonymous City Girl
Plain Jane


  1. Neil
    “Citizen of the Month”
    Los Angeles, CA

  2. Michèle
    “Voix de Michèle”
    Minneapolis, MN

  3. Femme
    “Femme d’espoir”
    The Deep South

    $20 bucks?? geez.
    hi ho, hi ho,
    it’s to the gym I go.

  4. Mari
    “Ar En In”
    Brighton&Hove, UK

  5. I have some problems with the nature of this contract. I would expect a fair exchange to be expressed in the contract – ” … for my effort, I will receive (fill in the blank).” This is not stated.

    Of more serious concern is this: does a similar contract exist for exercise enthusiasts compelling them to read, write or somehow exercise their dormant brains? The body may be fit but if the brain is not, you are simply animated meat. (Doncha think?)

    As I do not drive and thus walk everyday, all over the damn place, I consider this fulfillment of all contractual obligations. Therefore I do not mind signing …

    Edmonton, AB

  6. I’m having commitment issues. Does “humiliate myself on my own blog or in the comment section of this post…” mean I have to post pictures of my love handles? Or declare my true weight? Not just the one I tell the DMV?

  7. I’m too short to reach the top shelf at Barnes & Noble regardless of the shape of my calf muscles.

  8. I have revised my contract by redacting certain portions that I am unable to fulfill because it shortens my hip cafe time. Instead of showing all the struck language, I will just show the remaining language below:

    “I… agree to… neglect… this contract.”

  9. That’s a good contract. Before long, you’ll be addicted.

  10. That’s the spirit, Jack. Pass the pizza.

    Actually, I’m suffering from a serious case of midwestern winter butt, and need to get moving. It’s nice to have a little extra encouragement.

    And that California body consciousness? Yeah. Grew up with it, but never learned the discipline.

  11. That is so funny. HILARIOUS post. I’m struggling with the same thing…do I go write for three hours (even in the non-hip Blawnox, PA coffee shop) or exercise. The answer used to be easy…exercise. I think if I’d grown up in or around LA, I’d be dead from exercising. Writing is saving my life and killing me at the same time!!! How much do you owe at this point?

  12. Neil, good luck with the exercisin’, and in the words of OutKast’s “Hey Ya”…

    “…Shake it, shake, shake it, shake it (OHH OH)
    Shake it, shake it, shake, shake it, shake it, shake it (OHH OH)
    Shake it, shake it like a Polaroid Picture,
    shake it, shake it
    Shh you got to, shake it, shh shake it, shake it, got to shake it
    (Shake it Suga’) shake it like a Poloroid Picture…”

  13. Oh, hell.



  14. […] Hear Ye, Hear Ye: This royal decree binds all who sign below […]

  15. Alison – you need to get psyched up like me. I went out and bought some new nifty shorts and one of those cool water bottles. I’m ready. I bring this up because I know nothing inspires a woman more than an excuse to buy a new outfit.

  16. I like Jack’s redacted version. By the way, does dancing on bars count as exercise?

  17. Neil, the scary thing is that I just bought a new pair of shorts, ones that I can exercise in. Well, they’re sweats from Old Navy. So I’m good to go. Now I just have to do it.

    Still saying “Oh, hell,” from Lexington, KY.

  18. Jules
    Nowhere-ville, USA

    Neil, as much as I hope you are successful, the thought of you humiliating yourself on your own blog gets me a little excited. And yes, new work out clothes always get me psyched for training. Ask me how many skirts from I have.

  19. Wow, Jules, if you already have an ass like those women, I don’t think you need to bother with this exercise plan.

  20. I need to re-commit…2 weeks until the marathon and I’m having a hard time staying motivated…Plus 2 more races in the next 4 months! This will be good for me.

    PS – tomorrow I will have a post about the improper use of the running skirt.

  21. Fitèna
    “C’est la Vie! Life!”
    Quatre Bornes, Mauritius

    I bought a CD player, so that I can exercise/dance listening to music.

  22. Good contract, fantastic idea, will contemplate it over a cappuccino, crafty roll-up and a doughnut. will get back to you with the answer!!

  23. Dagny — Dancing on bars counts if you do it for an hour! Might spill your drink, though.

  24. great. here i spend a week putting on 30 pounds in order to support the fashion industry boycott, and now you want me to get in shape? pfft. men. they say they like your extra weight, but turn around for a moment and they make you sign an exercise contract…

  25. I’ve got you beat…I go four to five times a week. And “No” you can’t use one of my times to count as one of yours. Sorry.

    Good Luck!

  26. Go to the gym? Why? Just do like me…live way out in the suburbs, and bike everywhere.

  27. No thank you. I prefer to be a bit squishy, and I still enjoy a smoke. Working out goes against everything I believe in.


  28. There are two things that get me to the gym these days: the books on tape and episodes of “This American Life” I want to listen to on my iPod while I work out and the fact that our bathroom is being renovated and our existing shower is disgusting.

  29. Does it have to be the gym? Can it be my semi jog, moreso power walking for 2 miles along the water 2x a day? I promise to add in the weights that have been sitting unused in the corner of my room.

  30. Yikes, not 2x a day! a WEEK.

    bad typo, bad typo.

  31. I feel like I’ve become the new Richard Simmons! I’m adding the names so far to the bottom of the post.  Tell me if I forgot you.

  32. Denise
    “Do you have that in my size???”
    San Diego, California

    I can do this. Really, I can.

  33. I admire your sentiments, really I do, but I think I’ll just skip straight to humiliating myself. 😉

  34. Have you noticed that only your female readers have taken the bait? Only you can turn fitness and fear-of-fat into a flirting tool, you are amazing!

    Do you belong to one of those glitzy L.A. gyms with all the perks or one of the less hip non-meat-market ones? Do you talk to people while you work out? We need some posts about your gym experiences to prove that you’re holding up your end of the bargain.

  35. Caitlin
    “I Am The Caitlinator”
    New York, NY

  36. okey! I’m ready to go! Today I updated my knowledge on local gyms, and got myself a free 7 day pass for LA fitness. When that’s over I have a free 14 day pass for another local gym and for the week left over I will go to the local swimming baths gym and then get a free one day pass to Fitness First. That way I gett to find out which gyms are best and worth joining whilst working out! Today I also splashed out on some nikeys and jogging bottoms, cos the only thing I had to run in were ballet pumps and heeled boots. Hah! And I got some free socks (30!) from the manager at the store because he found me attractive. Socks! Socre! (I think!). Love and mars bars, Mari xxx

  37. Well if you’re gonna do it, so will I! Add me to that contract!

  38. Yes! I will.

    Edgy Mama
    “Adding Edge to My Ass”
    Asheville, North Carolina

    BTW, Ashvegas and I have a deal that we’re only allowed to drink on nights that we have exercised. This has had huge motivational consequences for my ass. Workout=wine!

  39. eeep — first three links are all to the same blog!

    Should we have a group fitness blog to go with this? That would be kinda cool!

  40. I’m in…

    Geneva, IL

    Slightly easier for me since I actually hold down a second job in a gym. But, I wanted to commit myself to the cause.

  41. i think we need a little more than that. tho the prospect of you humiliate yourself in public truly excites me (in a non sexual way, of course) it seems like you have been doing that on purpose anyway. i think we also need your penis to vouch for his willingness to participate in the exercise (the humiliating bit, not the gym, i assume the penis comes along to the gym?)

  42. i have that exercise regimen in place, but i so want to be part of the group. can i sign anyway?

  43. Treespotter — He gets enough exercise…

    Amanda — definitely. You can be the professional advisor. Like what’s better to do first — the aerobics or the weight machines?

  44. Hmmm…I will do an amended version, b/c I have decided that the reason I don’t exercise is that I HATE the gym even more than exercising. And until I’m off the prednisone, I have to go with low-to-no impact stuff.

    I’ll start with 2 hour-long walks this week (gack). Or $20. Maybe both, just to make myself and the world a better place.

  45. OMG!! I just saw that I am your blog crush for the day!

    Does this mean I have to send *you* $20?

  46. Communicatrix — No, that’s because I’m supposed to meet you tomorrow and I want you to pay for the coffee.

  47. Ok, sign me up. As long as my charity can involve animals, because I feel they need the most help, it being so hard for them to get jobs.

  48. “Playing it off the rim and keeping it nice and trim,”
    the Yearning Heart,
    the Llano Estacado,

  49. oh my, you think blogging and writing makes one a bit flabby? try being a food blogger. *reaches for another cupcake*

    i don’t think the gym will help. besides, i can’t even go to the gym because i wear sweats and no makeup, and showing up at LA Fitness in un-matching workout gear and ACTUALLY sweating is waaay worse than write anything humiliating on a blog.

    please, can you add a clause about just giving up early and eating nachos?

  50. Dude…you totally need to join a gym. Working out at home just degenerates into good intentions followed by half a box of Twinkies. Hop to it.

  51. Wordgirl. I have nothing to fear but the possibility that someone will mistake me for a freak with two asses. Now drop and give me twenty!

  52. I’m so not doing this. I love my ass the way it is. I don’t want to go messing it up with any of that muscle tone.

  53. OK, where does this leave me? I’m a wordsmith who woos others with the brilliance of my words, but I’m also a health nut who exercises regularly.

  54. Sign me up!

    I’ve already lost 18 pounds in the last couple months and I need to start moving my (not as big as it was) ass.

    I’ll give to charity if I don’t do it, cause it’s really not fair… I humilate myself on my blog on a weekly basis already.

  55. This is hot. I already workout at least three times a week, as I don’t want to be sized out of Macy’s.

  56. I’m already doing 60 minutes of cardio 5 times a week at the gym and getting fatter and fatter.

  57. Okay, I’m in (by way of Alison).

    “Less of Mags”


  58. Kelly
    “A Day in an Often Overwhelming Life”
    “Shake What Ya Mama Gave You”

    I realize I’m late to the game, but I’m on board.

  59. You can add me to the ‘bloggers with biceps’ category – my job counts as a workout!

  60. Ashbloem (which is currently on hold)

    Oh yeah, baby; I’m totally in.

  61. Am I too late? I love a challenge!

    “Her Grace”

  62. I’m in!

  63. Jill
    Virginia Beach, VA

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