The Manti Te’o story did not shock me much, and I assume did not shock many of the readers of this blog. Friends of mine—mainly non-wrestlers in their fifties—expressed a great deal of skepticism that someone could build a relationship with someone entirely through internet and phone conversations. How, they asked, could a guy have a relationship with a girl he’s never met?
Manti Te'o looking broken-hearted
Well, gay wrestlers build relationships with other gay wrestlers primarily through internet interaction and phone conversations. Sometimes we webcam or use skype, but there is no doubt that we in the gay wrestling community make friends and have relationships with guys whom, sometimes, we have never met.
For instance, I am going to Des Moines, Iowa in March. I will be sharing my room with a guy whom I’ve never met. I’ve spoken to him on the phone, and shared innumerable emails and texts, but we have never met.
Crazy? It could be, but I don’t think so.
Chris Dardanes of Minnesota gets upset
In the twenty-first century, when people have begun to find those who share their particular interests through the interent, it’s not that uncommon to “meet” someone through a website (like globalfights or meetfighters) and become “friends.” That’s right, I consider the guy who I will be sleeping with and wrestling with, a friend. I have never met him face-to-face, but I like him.
I’ve spoken before on this blog about listening to that “inner voice” that we all have. Your Spider-sense, if you will. It’s very important. If you have doubts about a guy you are going to meet, you should examine those doubts honestly and frankly before you travel miles and miles, and spend the money on a hotel. I’m not talking about your fears. It’s understandable that you might be nervous about meeting a guy for the first time. No, I’m talking about a nagging suspicion that maybe the guy won’t be as great as you think.
I don’t have any lingering spider-sense issues with the guy I will meet for the first time in March. They just aren’t there. But lately, I did have a situation where I had doubts, and I did not listen to them.
Several people wrote to me this past week and asked about the odd paragraph that ended my last blog entry. Well, that was a message to someone specific. The entire blog post was an explanation (in part) as to why I left abruptly after having driven four and half hours to wrestle a guy.
I had not listened to my spider-sense.
I have no intention of being rude to anyone in this blog. I don’t have the right to pass judgment on anyone. But I can say that I have the right to decide who I wrestle and who I don’t. And, a lot of it comes down to something as ephemeral as chemistry.
That term gets used a lot in referring to how people react to each other. But it is true that human beings react on an emotional level to other people. Whether this is the result of some particular aspect of a person’s appearance, something that person says, or some mannerism they exhibit, none of us can deny the fact that we judge a person on our first meeting.
Last summer when I was in Chicago, I met a guy who came to my hotel room to wrestle some friends of mine. The second he walked in the door, I knew I wanted to wrestle him. Thank God, he felt the same way. But I have also had instances where I have met a guy and realized, equally as quickly, that I did not want to wrestle him. On that same trip to Chicago, I met a guy who is, by all criteria, very attractive. But for some reason, I knew—knew—that I did not want to wrestle him, or, that if I did, we would not hit it off sexually. And, that is exactly what happened. We wrestled, but that was all.
It was chemistry my friends. You either hit it off, or you don’t. It’s all part of that primal, animal, part of us that recognizes a suitable mate (or in this case, wrestling partner) when it sees one.
So, before you book that flight. Before you gas up the car. Examine your feelings and see if you have any doubts. Hopefully, you won’t, and you’ll meet a guy to wrestle who will become a life-long friend. It’s happened to me far more often than it hasn’t.