Friday, November 19, 2010

It's In The Blood!

I always wanted to be a competitor and participator in women's sports.  So, knowing the basic rules of volleyball, one year I decided to try out for Volleyball at Amos Alonzo Stagg High School in Stockton, CA!  I don't even remember if it was JV or Varsity or maybe even both.  I just know that I didn't make it and I talked to the coach about it.  He told me that I was "too feminine" to make the team.  In other words, I sucked.  At Lodi Academy, where I was a Sophomore, another coach observed me one day and told me that I'd be a good runner, if I'd just try a little harder.  In other words, I was lazy.  I tried swimming and dance, both of which I'm glad I did, but never did anything huge with them either.  But the one advantage these attempts gave me was that I kept fairly active and was always in fairly good shape!  I'm glad that I just didn't give up.  All the while I was playing piano and violin, reading everything in sight and ebbing and flowing with my love and social life!  I also was very active in my church youth group.  So all in all, not a bad life!  
Now I have two boys, who, ever since they could walk, have been eager to be competitors and participate in the sports boys like to do.  My oldest son didn't stay in one high school long enough to be able to stay on the football team and see any kind of continuity.  I remember with fondness how he tried so hard during his first year in football .  He'd never been exposed to the sport much before that.  So in 8th grade he really tried hard and at the end of the season, he won the Most Improved Player award!  He played one more year after that for JV and then moved around a lot after that.  But I know he still wanted to be a participant.  One thing he found he was especially good at was fighting.  Sigh....
From what I understand, it was a major epiphany when the school tough guy (bully) kept taunting him and challenged him to fight.  This kid was really tall and towered over Eddie, who is built like a small truck.  So on a weekend, in a deserted field, somewhere in Missouri, Eddie and the bully met.  Word had spread, in the meantime.  The field was lined with about 50 spectators waiting to see the event.  Eddie calmly got out of the car his friend drove him in, walked up to the challenger and put him out, complete with a broken nose before anyone could even yell out.  It was over that quick and Eddie walked away with a new sense of what he could do.  Good or bad, Eddie started to look for ways to develop his "talent". 
He found that opportunity with a new sport called MMA.  His first fight was against one of the best fighters in the area and it was very humbling.  The other guy had him out in about two minutes.  I remember asking about his black eye and initially, he told me he and a guy had been horsing around and he got nailed.  No big deal.  The loss only made him more determined.  He hooked up with a team called 'Unbreakable' and began training in Spanish Fork, UT in a little gym.  This was done all behind my back because I let it be known that I don't like violent sports.  They are too dangerous.  The thought of him getting hurt is really scary for me.  And I don't understand what makes it such an exciting sport for many men.  
One day late in October, I noticed his face was a little beat up, like he'd been in a fight.  I now suspected that he was doing MMA and probably training and getting roughed up.  He told me then that he had just won $650 in Wyoming over the weekend fighting one of the best fighters in the state.  He was the "Fight of the Night"  and was the underdog.  He came out on top.  He said that he had never done anything more draining and tiring but that he loved it.  He said that if he didn't get anything for it, he'd still do it.  I don't know what to make of that.  I can relate in one sense because I like to blog and do it without any compensation whatsoever, although it's great to get paid every once in awhile!  
He invited me to one of his fights and I attended the Blood Black and Blue Event at The Man Expo this past Saturday night.  It was quite the eye-opener!  He won and walked away without too much damage. (I'm just glad he didn't end up like the loser in one of the other fights--his nose was so busted up that blood was spurting from it like a geyser and covered the floor.)  He was limping a little bit and the next day he thought he might have hurt his hand.  I hope that he enjoys it and then moves on to something else.  In the meantime, I think I'll give it my support when I can.  His next fight is in January at the McKay Events Center!  If he wins, he gets $1000!  Go Eddie!  I guess it's in the blood! 
Eddie With His Agent and Trainer

One of Eddie's team buddies

Getting checked before the fight