Wednesday, February 4, 2009


OSU has a wrestling team. A really good wrestling team. They're ranked 5th in the country. I know what you're thinking: "How many more wrestling teams can there be? 5th in the country could mean last in the country. How, Joseph, can we be confident you haven't simply succumbed to the doctrine of 'Crimson and Gray,' that thick mist of Ohio State school spirit that sends even the youngest freshman streaking down High Street in nothing but silver and red paint yelling out oaths of terrific hostility towards anything Michigan? On top of that, Joseph, you're guilty of sport favoritism, a parasite that always seeks a convenient host--OSU's wrestling team in your case. You can't possibly know what real competition is on a massive scale because you forewent indoctrination by the 'real American' sport when you turned down the grid for a wrestling mat in high school. You watch college football, but you've never really given up your loyalties have you?" A good point. But one that you would not be asking if you were one of my brothers. Therefore, if you are not one of said brothers, you can stop reading; you're embarrassing me.

To my brothers: OSU has a freaking awesome wrestling team. They're all thugs, the whole lot of 'em. With arms the width of Seth's head when he has his afro, and six-packs the size of real six-packs. None of them can hear a thing out of the cauliflower on both sides of their head and they don't breathe from the moment the whistle blows. These guys sprint for all six. And the technique? Ah, it's beautiful. I saw the sweetest barrel-roll, the fasted single-leg, the slickest back-door, the meanest 5-point combo, and something I can only describe as an inside-out standing Peterson that went airborne into a Syracuse spin and landed with a leg-ride of sorts--all that to escape a double-leg. I stood up and roared after that one. I couldn't help it. I used to paint--these guys are artists. I'm telling you, you would have loved it. Every time a new match would start, the announcer would rattle off each wrestler's credentials. I don't think I ever heard less than at least a two-time state champion from either team. Some were four-timers. And that was just the teaser. Their NCAA records sounded like as good a license to kill as any I would need to get out of their way. Here's something interesting I found out about college rules: a tie goes to the man with the most riding time. No overtime. I thought that was kind of weird, but it makes sense. Don't expect to finish the sweet comeback you're on during overtime if you can't shake the guy's hips during regulation. You better do it now or never. Anyway, I felt myself back in an element I used to live on, but forgot about. Like living in a world without fire and then seeing it again. Then feeling it again. The blaze was amazing; the heat, exhilarating.


ju said...

nice pictures.

joseph said...

thanks for the pictures, julie.

hbc said...


Let someone on the osu news staff read this. Good stuff!


Maren B said...

Wow, I bet you peed your pants with delight. I'm glad you're in a place that honors such barbarity. Just kidding, Joseph.