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My Journey to 2nd Place

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My opponent shot right off the whistle, much to my chagrin, and got in deep on a single. I usually give up the takedown in these situations, as fighting off a single is usually a waste of time and energy. But for some reason I fought it this time. I'm not sure why. It would have been much easier, and more prudent, to give up the takedown, stall it out on bottom, and then put on another tilt clinic the next period. But there I was, dancing at center mat with my opponent. He tried to trip, I'd jump it. He tried to treetop finish it, I'd resist it. Finally he drove hard and switched to a double, I hipped in to a stonewall sprawl, out we tumbled towards the edge of the mat, landing hard...

 

The next thing I remember was the ref signalling for two, his voice seemed to echo from a far off distance. Time and space slowed down. Things appeared somewhat hazy. A trainer appeared and was shinning a light at me. "Hello son, is there anybody in there?" came his deep, soothing voice. "Just nod if you can hear me." And nod I did, at least I think I did. "Relax, I need some information first, just the basic facts, can you show me where it hurts?"

 

But there wasn't any pain, it was more like everything was receding. The boos were coming through in waves. I noticed the ref's lips move but I couldn't hear what he was saying. When I was freshman I had a similar feeling. Now I had that feeling once again. I can't explain, you wouldn't understand.

 

"O.K." said the trainer. "Just a little pin prick..."

 

AHHHHHHHHHH!

 

"Can you stand up? I do believe it's working...good. That'll keep you going through the match. Come on, your injury time is almost up.", the trainer said as he all but dragged me back to center mat. When I was a frosh I caught a fleeting glimpse, of my coach and fans cheering me on. I turned to look but my coach was gone. The frosh is grown, the cheering is gone, and I have become...

 

"Green you're down!", barked the ref. "You have no more injury time left. Top man set. On my whistle..."

 

My opponent exploded off the whistle. I did not. Near arm chop with a far ankle ride and I was already broken down flat. Much like Randy in "A Christmas Story", I laid there like a slug, it was my only defense.

 

I heard my opponent's coaches shouting out instructions to him. Where was my coaches? I looked over to my corner and saw two empty chairs, as usual. I didn't mind all that much, as I rarely listened to their advice during matches. My apathy to their coaching was so much so that they eventually stopped showing up to my corner, for I was labelled "uncoachable". That's probably why I was the only #1 ranked wrestler in the state who no college recruiter had bothered to contact.

 

But still, it would have been a nice gesture for my coaches to at least show up to my matches. I knew they were out there, in hiding, even from the ranking meetings. In the twilight's last gleaming, at the open of this season, they didn't think I'd make it this far. 'Cause they gotta blame someone, if they don't coach a state champion. I can hear their footsteps, out along the tunnel. Out along the tunnel. Lunatic coaches, I know you're out there. Can you feel my resistance, to your state finals solution?

 

"We got caution stalling on bottom!" bellowed the ref as buzzer sounded to end the first period...

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My opponent shot right off the whistle, much to my chagrin, and got in deep on a single. I usually give up the takedown in these situations, as fighting off a single is usually a waste of time and energy. But for some reason I fought it this time. I'm not sure why. It would have been much easier, and more prudent, to give up the takedown, stall it out on bottom, and then put on another tilt clinic the next period. But there I was, dancing at center mat with my opponent. He tried to trip, I'd jump it. He tried to treetop finish it, I'd resist it. Finally he drove hard and switched to a double, I hipped in to a stonewall sprawl, out we tumbled towards the edge of the mat, landing hard...

 

The next thing I remember was the ref signalling for two, his voice seemed to echo from a far off distance. Time and space slowed down. Things appeared somewhat hazy. A trainer appeared and was shinning a light at me. "Hello son, is there anybody in there?" came his deep, soothing voice. "Just nod if you can hear me." And nod I did, at least I think I did. "Relax, I need some information first, just the basic facts, can you show me where it hurts?"

 

But there wasn't any pain, it was more like everything was receding. The boos were coming through in waves. I noticed the ref's lips move but I couldn't hear what he was saying. When I was freshman I had a similar feeling. Now I had that feeling once again. I can't explain, you wouldn't understand.

 

"O.K." said the trainer. "Just a little pin prick..."

 

AHHHHHHHHHH!

 

"Can you stand up? I do believe it's working...good. That'll keep you going through the match. Come on, your injury time is almost up.", the trainer said as he all but dragged me back to center mat. When I was a frosh I caught a fleeting glimpse, of my coach and fans cheering me on. I turned to look but my coach was gone. The frosh is grown, the cheering is gone, and I have become...

 

"Green you're down!", barked the ref. "You have no more injury time left. Top man set. On my whistle..."

 

My opponent exploded off the whistle. I did not. Near arm chop with a far ankle ride and I was already broken down flat. Much like Randy in "A Christmas Story", I laid there like a slug, it was my only defense.

 

I heard my opponent's coaches shouting out instructions to him. Where was my coaches? I looked over to my corner and saw two empty chairs, as usual. I didn't mind all that much, as I rarely listened to their advice during matches. My apathy to their coaching was so much so that they eventually stopped showing up to my corner, for I was labelled "uncoachable". That's probably why I was the only #1 ranked wrestler in the state who no college recruiter had bothered to contact.

 

But still, it would have been a nice gesture for my coaches to at least show up to my matches. I knew they were out there, in hiding, even from the ranking meetings. In the twilight's last gleaming, at the open of this season, they didn't think I'd make it this far. 'Cause they gotta blame someone, if they don't coach a state champion. I can hear their footsteps, out along the tunnel. Out along the tunnel. Lunatic coaches, I know you're out there. Can you feel my resistance, to your state finals solution?

 

"We got caution stalling on bottom!" bellowed the ref as buzzer sounded to end the first period...

 

8-)

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My opponent exploded off the whistle. I did not. Near arm chop with a far ankle ride and I was already broken down flat. Much like Randy in "A Christmas Story", I laid there like a slug, it was my only defense.

 

I heard my opponent's coaches shouting out instructions to him. Where was my coaches? I looked over to my corner and saw two empty chairs, as usual. I didn't mind all that much, as I rarely listened to their advice during matches. My apathy to their coaching was so much so that they eventually stopped showing up to my corner, for I was labelled "uncoachable". That's probably why I was the only #1 ranked wrestler in the state who no college recruiter had bothered to contact.

 

But still, it would have been a nice gesture for my coaches to at least show up to my matches. I knew they were out there, in hiding, even from the ranking meetings. In the twilight's last gleaming, at the open of this season, they didn't think I'd make it this far. 'Cause they gotta blame someone, if they don't coach a state champion. I can hear their footsteps, out along the tunnel. Out along the tunnel. Lunatic coaches, I know you're out there. Can you feel my resistance, to your state finals solution?

 

"We got caution stalling on bottom!" bellowed the ref as buzzer sounded to end the first period...

 

My opponent had choice to start the 2nd period and he chose top. With a heavy sigh I got into par terre.

 

"Bottom man set. Top man cover!", instructed the ref.

 

Once again my opponent exploded off the whistle, and before I knew it I was already flat. "He's stalling, ref!" shouted my opponent's coaches. They were correct. I had nothing left. The jig was up. The ship had sailed.

 

I looked around to find some inspiration, anything to give me a reason to keep on going. I looked over to my corner, hoping that just maybe my coaches had decided to show up for some moral support. But there was nobody home. Once again they had gone and left me all alone. I had no desire. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired. Tell me now coaches was I not good to you? Can your other wrestlers do the things that I can do? None of them are ranked higher. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired. My opponent let me go and then hit a 5-point throw, baby edgy and dull, through the middle of soul. I bridged out, soaking wet, only for him to hit a freight train double right through of my best defense. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired...

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My opponent had choice to start the 2nd period and he chose top. With a heavy sigh I got into par terre.

 

"Bottom man set. Top man cover!", instructed the ref.

 

Once again my opponent exploded off the whistle, and before I knew it I was already flat. "He's stalling, ref!" shouted my opponent's coaches. They were correct. I had nothing left. The jig was up. The ship had sailed.

 

I looked around to find some inspiration, anything to give me a reason to keep on going. I looked over to my corner, hoping that just maybe my coaches had decided to show up for some moral support. But there was nobody home. Once again they had gone and left me all alone. I had no desire. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired. Tell me now coaches was I not good to you? Can your other wrestlers do the things that I can do? None of them are ranked higher. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired. My opponent let me go and then hit a 5-point throw, baby edgy and dull, through the middle of soul. I bridged out, soaking wet, only for him to hit a freight train double right through of my best defense. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBTtRL8g_C4

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Yes, there is a way to read Hemingway, and a way not to read him (much the same with DF) and that is, I believe what separates those who love his writing, and those who don't. Personally, having read well over 50,000 books, I place Hemingway in the top 5.

Wow. 50,000! What's the count up to now Medicine Man? I've read a lot of books, but not that many.

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Dear Friends,

 

Many of you are familiar with my quest to state titleship as a senior. Most of you, however, are not aware of a far more ominous achievement---that being my 2nd place finish at state the previous year. Without it I may have never won state as a senior. I would like to share with you that story now. Many lessons shall be learned of how a 2nd place finish propelled me to state titlehood the following year.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Down a desolate and lonely road, our team bused pulled up to the barren parking lot of the motel. The kind of place that would have no qualms about renting you a room by the hour if you so desired and seemed to always have a few shady characters loitering out front. This was where our school had decided to put us up the night before the state tournament. While other teams were staying at better establishments, we were going to be holed up at the kind of place where you go to sleep only after you pushed the dresser and a couple of chairs up against the bedroom door.

 

"You got to be joking. Is this where we're staying at?", I asked nobody in particular as I stared outside the bus window.

 

"Shut it Del. I don't want to hear any more of your complaining. Ever since we started this trip 8 hours ago all you've done is complain. Everybody get their bags and get out. We got a long day ahead of us as it is.", came a voice from the front of the bus. That voice belonging to the coach. He went 6 feet about 200 pounds even. Twenty or so pounds heavier than his prime competing weight. The kind of guy you knew was a wrestler just by looking at him. Strongest chap I ever had the displeasure of tying up with in the practice room. The kind of vice-like grip that said you were in trouble the moment you tied up with him.

 

The only thing worse than the outside of this motel was the inside. The decor was strictly 70's. Shag rugs and wood paneling for walls.

 

"This is bull$!#&", I muttered underneath my breath as I threw my bags on one end of the bed. The kind of bed with a coin slot at the other end for a groovy vibrating massage experience. If there was any silver lining to this fiasco it was that at least I got a single room all to myself. I took out my scale from my luggage, calibrated it to zero, and stepped on up.

 

"Oh sh--!" I yelled toward the general direction of the ancient TV set that was bolted down to the coffee table. Weigh in were 8 hours away and I was just as many pounds over...

Either you have a very slow bus driver or are from Alaska.  Why did it take over 8 hours to reach the hotel?  

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Well over 50,000 books read?!?  Right.

 

 

You are some serious customers...probably without the humor to enjoy the words of DF...likely never heard of hyperbole.  Reminds me of my wife when I tell 
her what happened at the store:  "As I was checking out, the girl at the register yelled toward the back of the previous 
customer who was walking out of the store.  She hollered, "Sir! Sir! You forgot your billfold, Sir!!"  And the man, instead
of turning back, bolted out the door and sprinted down the sidewalk.  Very unusual behavior.  A police car just happened to 
be driving by, and the red lights and siren came on, the car then sped after the running man.  Then about 20 seconds later,
from what sounded like less than a block away, gunshots were fired!"
 
    After I tell my wife this, she asks, "was she pretty?"      
    "Who?" I respond.
    "The girl at the register you were talking about."
 
I would say I've read nearly 5,000 more books since that post.  Lots of books out there, comic books, matchbooks, short books 
of the bible, some very short books of which some of my favorites are;
 
One Hundred And One Spotted Owl Recipes, by The EPA.
Orville Reddenbacher's Favorite Snack Treats
 Amelia Earhart's Guide to the Pacific Ocean 
 Different Ways to Spell "Bob"
Dr. Kevorkian's Collection of Motivational Speeches
  Everything Men Know About Women 
  Everything Women Know About Men
George Foreman's Big Book of Baby Names
The Amish Phone Book 
 Mike Tyson's Guide to Dating Etiquette
Female's Guide To Logical Thinking. 
Bowler's Guide To Health & Fitness.
Eskimo Swimsuit Models
Life As An Air Traffic Controller, by Ray Charles.
Pi, Rounded For Everyday Use

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My opponent had choice to start the 2nd period and he chose top. With a heavy sigh I got into par terre.

 

"Bottom man set. Top man cover!", instructed the ref.

 

Once again my opponent exploded off the whistle, and before I knew it I was already flat. "He's stalling, ref!" shouted my opponent's coaches. They were correct. I had nothing left. The jig was up. The ship had sailed.

 

I looked around to find some inspiration, anything to give me a reason to keep on going. I looked over to my corner, hoping that just maybe my coaches had decided to show up for some moral support. But there was nobody home. Once again they had gone and left me all alone. I had no desire. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired. Tell me now coaches was I not good to you? Can your other wrestlers do the things that I can do? None of them are ranked higher. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired. My opponent let me go and then hit a 5-point throw, baby edgy and dull, through the middle of soul. I bridged out, soaking wet, only for him to hit a freight train double right through of my best defense. Oh oh oh, I'm so tired...

 

It had come to this.  The inevitable 3rd period.  I was running on empty.  I chose bottom...

 

On a long and lonesome mat east of Omaha, I listened to the ref's whistle moanin' out its one note song.  I thought about quitting like I wanted to do the night before. 

 

But my thoughts were soon wandering the way they always do.  When your opponent's riding you and there's nothing you can do.  And you don't feel much wrestling, you just wish the match was through. 

 

Here I am, in the finals again.  There I am, wrestling center stage.  Here I go, playing the antihero again.  There I go, feeling the fans rage.

 

Well you walk into center mat, all strung-out from the match before.  And you feel the fans' hatred upon you as you're shaking off the cold. You pretend they don't bother you, but you just want to stallplode. 

 

Most times you can't hear 'em boo you, other times you can.  All the same old clichés: "Hey ref he's stalling, make him wrestle man!"  And you always seem outconditioned, so you don't dare try to stand.

 

Here I am, in the finals again.  There I am, wrestling on center stage.  Here I go, playing the antihero again.  There I go, feeling the fans rage.

 

Out there under the spotlight victory might as well be a million miles away.  Every ounce of energy you've given away.  As the sweat pours out your body like the match that's slipping away.

 

Later in the 3rd period as you lie exhausted out of bounds.  With the echoes from the booing ringin' in your head.  You get the day's last cold spray, remembering what J.C. Quinn from Vision Quest said.

 

Here I am, in the finals again.  There I am, wrestling center stage.  Here I go, playing the antihero again.  There I go, feeling the fans rage.

Here I am, in the finals again.  There I am, wrestling center stage.  Here I go, playing the antihero again.  There I go, feeling the fans rage...

 

Edited by DF

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Did Cheap tilt hack your account?  Not your best work and what made your work great was having to guess the lyrics you manipulated.  Not only did you not advance your storyline one little bit, you almost went word for word from the song and then linked the video to boot!  Either a ton of long hiatus rust, or the work of an impostor!  

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I count nearfall and point at future opponents the way DF did before his first round match. He’s a cultural touchstone for my wrestling program.

 

God bless, the US of A for producing this man of true grit by contradicting our ideals enough to disillusion enough in each generation to continue our antihero traditions.

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