Monday, July 1, 2013
A Battle Against All Odds
The guy on the left is David Taylor, a one-time NCAA Wrestling Champ from Penn State. On the right is Kyle Dake, David's best friend and greatest rival. Kyle has wrestled David five times. And, Kyle has beaten David five times. In the picture above, David struggles ineffectually against Kyle at the World Team Trials, about a week ago in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
I like this picture because of what it represents about wrestling. Notice how David's head is tucked into Kyle's chest. He has Kyle's arm and is working to force Kyle backward. But Kyle stands there, immobile and unmoving, as David struggles to force him back. Kyle looks on, a look of almost casual concern on his face. He seems to be holding David in place, stopping his forward motion with hardly any effort. There is almost a look of concern on his face, a muted sympathy for his friend who obviously does not have the strength to push Kyle back. And, indeed, the match would end in yet another defeat for David Taylor.
To me, this demonstrates the struggle, and the intimacy, of wrestling. The quiet movement of strength and muscle and determination. The sweat and the desire, and the failure of that desire.
David Taylor is one of the most talented wrestlers in the nation. He can beat anyone - literally - except Kyle Dake (and Olympic Gold Medalist, Jordon Burroughs).
He is a hero to many people in the wrestling community. But, when he wrestles Dake he always fails, and is humiliated, yet again, in front of his fans and admirers.
I haven't written much lately. I've had a lot going on in my work and home life. I guess I've been pretty distracted.
I have done some wrestling, but it's been either unpleasant or sort of inconsequential.
About a week ago, a guy who has been writing to me for several months came to town. I guess I should not have agreed to wrestle him. I never really found him particularly attractive. I just sort of agreed because he wanted to wrestle me and he was willing to drive a long way to meet me. I guess I was flattered.
But I should have given it a little more thought.
I took off from work and went over to the hotel where he was staying. I was wondering what he'd look like. He'd sent me pictures, but none of them had been really clear. So, when he opened the door, I thought...well, he's okay.
I walked into the room and he just stared at me. A sort of odd, fixed stare. Then he hugged me. I thought: okay. I can hug. Then he started kissing me. I thought: okay, I guess I can kiss.
It really didn't stop. Worse, I just sort of stupidly went along with it. I want to wrestle but for some reason (what really bugs me about this whole thing, I guess), I just went along with it.
We wound up sort of having sex. He worked on me. He, however, never got a hard-on. At one point, we sort of wrestled a bit, but then he just lay on top of me, kissing me and...well...looking at me.
That was what began to get to me. As we lay there, it began to dawn on me (I am a little slow) that he just wanted to be on me. Just wanted to kiss me and touch me.
I got up and left.
I blame myself. I should have told him that I wanted to wrestle but for some unfathomable reason I just let him lead me through it. I should not have done that. It was unfair to him, as much as it was unpleasant for me. I should have forced him to wrestle me. But I didn't. And I'm not sure why.
Then, last weekend, I flew to Boston for work. While there, I met up with a guy whom I've wanted to meet for a long time. He's really hot. He has a lean, muscled body. He's about my size. I think he's handsome.
While I was in transit to Boston, he texted me and told me that he wanted me to be open-minded and ready to try anything. I told him I would.
But, when I arrive, we sat and talked for quite a while. I began to get the feeling that he didn't really want me there. When we finally got out his mats, I changed into some briefs. I walked into the room and he was still dressed. He said: "You're ready to wrestle." And it was said in such a way that I knew he meant: "I guess we have to wrestle."
We did. It was okay. I think he was in some physical discomfort, and I think that may have been a lot of it. He's had some physical problems.
But then we went to his bedroom where he set up several videos to play and set up some restrains on the bed. This took quite while and it sort of dampened the mood. But then we got back to it.
I really think he did not want me there. I wish he'd told me that, but I guess he felt obligated since I'd come so far. And I was spending the night with him - although in separate beds.
So, wrestling has not been great lately. I am scheduled to go to Memphis and wrestle a friend in about two weeks, but I've developed a slight medical problem that might cause me to have to put that off. No, it's not a sexually transmitted disease. It's a hernia. I'm not in pain or anything but I'm going to the doc to see what, if anything, will need to be done.
So, there. My exciting life. It gets better, right?