In the locker room of the BRAZEN dojo two men are in various forms of undress. One is seated on a bench, bending over, as another – very large – man is standing but also bent over.
“Bobby, I swear, if I have to tell you one more goddamn time…” Eric Dane threatens with a menacing growl as he tries to finish lacing his boots.
With several dozen lockers available for Bobby Dean to change in front of, he is standing mere feet away from Eric Dane, bent over at the waist in an attempt to remove his pants. Dane, who changes clothes in normal man-time, is tying his laces but has to stop as Bobby keeps backing his ass closer and closer.
“I gotta say, I find it more than a little disturbing that in a large, empty room, you feel it necessary to change right next to me,” Dane says in disbelief.
Still bent over, looking at his friend upside-down, Bobby says with difficulty: “You know what I find disturbing? How difficult it is to remove my pants! Can you help me out, buddy?”
Dane doesn’t bother answering, choosing instead to stare at Bobby as if he were the dumbest man alive before standing up and heading towards the exit, untied laces trailing behind.
The struggle is real, folks.
“About damn time!” Angus Skaaland belts out as Bobby makes his appearance, finally.
Dressed in some drab, ratty sweatpants with an equally ratty hoodie, Bobby makes his way across the dojo floor to the awaiting Angus Skaaland and Eric Dane. Angus watches on as Eric rapidly works out a few (hundred) inverted crunches as he dangles upside down, his legs strapped in some medieval contraption. Bobby stops and watches on, confused, tilting his head sideways as if he were trying to look at Eric Dane right side up.
“Right, we’re going to get you strapped in, and see how many of these you can bust out,” Angus says as if it were somehow somewhere inside the realm of possibility.
To which Bobby replies, “HAHAHAHAHAHA!”
Dane pauses and looks over at Bobby with disdain as Angus explains, “Come on, lardo. These will work on your core, balance, and will help you lose some of that excess weight you got dangling there.”
“Eric,” Bobby whines. “I can’t even do a regular sit-up. I mean, the only crunch I’ve ever even heard of the Wrap Supreme variety.”
Seeing the truth in the that, Dane shifts his gaze over to Angus who smirks, and with a shrug of his shoulders admits, “What? I thought it’d be kind of funny to see the fat ass dangling upside down. I figure we could at least make him puke. I mean, hell, maybe getting him to turn bulimic will help us in time for this cockamamie match they’ve got you cornered into.”
With an impressive display of dexterity for a man his age, Eric Dane is right side up and all the way off the inversion table with his arms crossed over his chest and a thoughtful expression on his face. “Maybe you’re onto something here. Maybe we need to think outside the box with this. Hell, I’m sure Bobby has tried all the quick-loss diet fads there are. Maybe we should go old school?”
A lightbulb goes off.
“I’ve got just the thing!” Angus declares, catching onto Eric’s line of thought as Bobby just stands there with his finger up his nose. Not really up his nose, but it appears the inside of his nostril has an itch.
Angus stands in the back of the BRAZEN dojo parking lot, a clucking chicken tucked under his arm as Eric Dane and Bobby Dean stand before him. Eric, nodding his head, has apparently caught on. Bobby stand’s there slack-jawed and wide-eyed, staring at the chicken as if he were ready to devour that thing alive.
“Uhm,” Bobby says, or mutters, or asks, as he raises his hand like a child in school.
“No, you can’t eat the chicken,” Eric announces without even bothering to look over at the fat man.
“Well, now, don’t get ahead of yourself,” Angus declares with a bit of a mischievous grin. “Bobby, I got this here chicken specifically for you to eat.”
Bobby’s frown literally turns upside-down as he quickly flashes his tongue at the disbelieving Eric Dane. He then shifts his eyes back to the clucking chicken.
“The only problem is,” Angus begins, looking down at the chicken tucked under his arm. “He ain’t dead.”
“That’s okay, I like Pushi!” Bobby answers smiling as Angus and Dane share a look of confusion. “It’s like sushi, but with poultry.”
Eric and Angus, once more, look at each other, then both look at Bobby. Angus shakes his head, either in disbelief or incredulity. “Yeah, well, your problem is, this here chicken is loose and somebody’s gotta catch ‘em before they can eat ‘em.”
“No…” Bobby begins to say, pointing at the chicken in Angus’s arms when all of a sudden Angus dumps the chicken unceremoniously onto the ground. The chicken, sensing his freedom at hand, takes off away from the trio.
“Well? What are you just standing there for?” Eric asks Bobby.
Bobby takes off after the chicken, bent over at the waist arms outstretched, though not even close to catching the stupid bird.
“I can’t believe you ate it…” Angus says with surprise; or was it disgust?
“I can’t believe he caught it!” Eric answers with equal disbelief in his voice.
“Uhm,” Bobby sheepishly says, “I didn’t exactly catch it…”
Both Angus and Eric stop walking, leading Bobby to stop as well.
“What?” Eric asks.
“Well, you see. What had happened was…. I chased him around the corner and he, well, chickens are really stupid.” Bobby explains, in his own, equally chicken-stupid, way. “He kind of ran into the road, and well, I guess the question of why did the chicken cross the road was finally answered. To get away from me? Hehe? No? Too soon?”
Eric slaps his forehead in frustration.
“The chicken was run over?” Angus asks for clarification. “And you ate it?”
“What?” Bobby asks as if that were perfectly regular behavior.
“Nevermind, let’s get this show on the road,” Angus answers, leading the two men further into the busy building, past the myriad of workers who were all wearing plastic shower caps over their heads along with matching plastic coats with black rubber aprons.
“This is another old school workout that everybody did when I was coming up,” Angus lies as he walks towards a big stainless steel door.
Opening the door, Bobby is greeting first by cold, but then by the wonderful aroma of…
“BEEEEEF!” Bobby shouts with glee. “Loads and loads of beef!”
There before the trio is exactly what Bobby has dreamed off for a his entire adult life, a room full of meat. With his mouth watering like a faucet Bobby follows Angus to one particular slab of meat hanging from a hook above.
Angus walks up to the slab and without much adieu, punches the meat, delivering a sick, but rewarding, thud.
“This’ll get the heart rate up, work your strength, cardio, and well, it’s safe because it won’t hit you back,” Angus instructs as Eric Dane steps back, getting ready to watch on.
Bobby looks at Angus with confusion on his face. “You want me to beat the meat?”
Dane shakes his head, Angus scowls. Bobby simply looks at the two, oblivious to his own juvenile innuendo.
“I can’t eat it?” Bobby asks.
“You just ate a fucking chicken,” Angus screams, spittle flying out of his mouth. “Now you want to eat an entire slab of beef?”
Dane looks at Angus with bewilderment, wondering if he really just doesn’t get exactly what kind of a human trash can that Bobby Dean can be when pressed.
“No! You can’t eat the meat. Just fucking punch it!” Angus bellows, surprising Bobby, who rushes forward and slaps the slab of beef with an open-handed slap.
“There,” Bobby announces in triumph. “Done. Now can I eat it?”
“If he doesn’t get serious, I’m walking,” Angus says towards Eric Dane. The End Boss simply shakes his head.
Needless to say, Angus soon stormed out, leaving an oblivious Bobby, and an exasperated Eric Dane in his wake.
Running on sand is a pain in the ass. Hell, walking on sand sucks balls. Bobby is walking along the sandy man-made beach of the nearest water park, in front of a massive wave pool. With the heat index at it’s all-time high, thanks Global Warming, Bobby is a sweating mess of a man.
“I think I’ve got a heat rash,” Bobby complains as he rubs at the underside of his man boobs, or as he calls them, his moobies. “The boys are itching like wildfire!”
Eric Dane, shirtless, glistening in the heat, walks back from the finish line scowling. “Come on! We were racing and you gave up after three steps!”
“Of course I did, my legs fucking hurt!” Bobby whines back. “You’ve had me chasing chickens, which you wouldn’t let me eat! Playing hopscotch, which I thought you said was butterscotch! Punching innocent slabs of beef, which you also wouldn’t let me eat! And now you expect me to run in the sand!? Especially after you knocked over my totally awesome sand castle!”
The Only Star’s eyes go wide.
“When are you going to figure it the fuck out?” Eric asks, completely fed up. “You’re a joke. You’re the laughing stock of the wrestling industry. You were added into this match specifically to weigh me down, literally, and you’re so oblivious to the mockery that you’ve become that you can’t even see that I’m the only person left in this industry that even cares! I’m here trying to help you get back into shape when I could be off doing my own thing to get ready for this match! I could be doing God knows what else, anything else, but instead, I’ve spent the last four days trying to motivate you to better yourself.
Eric let’s that last thought linger in the air momentarily.
“But you know what, fuck it,” Dane says with absolute defeat in his voice. “You want to be the funny fat clown, you be the funny fat clown. But when you and I step foot into that ring, I expect one thing from you, and so help me God if you fuck this up I’ll cut the fat off your tits with a chef’s knife.”
Eric steps right up into Bobby’s face, pushing against Bobby’s girthy stomach. He forces the entirety of his daunting presence completely inside of Bobby’s personal bubble.
“You will stand in that corner, and you will do nothing,” Eric hisses angrily. “I fucking mean it. You so much as scratch your ass, or pick your nose, or whatever dumb shit you can think of to distract me…” He smiles at Bobby, and there is absolutely no mirth, just cold-blooded evil. “If you do any little thing to fucking cost me this match…”
Trailing off Eric turns and begins to walk away, leaving the fat man standing in the sand.
“Well, you already know. Don’t fuck this up, Bobby.”
People come, and people go.
“What the fuck is he doing?” one on-looker asks another?
“I don’t know…” the second answers. “I think, I think he’s… running?”
And so he is.
Bobby Dean, maybe the fattest guy to ever sign an HOW wrestling contract, a guy who hasn’t even attempted to run in at least a decade, is going as hard and as fast as he can. Which is to say, not very, but it’s the effort that counts.
His thighs betray him, cramping at every step. His grease-clogged pores pour more sweat than they were ever intended to release. His muscles ache beyond anything that he’s ever on purpose or even accidentally put himself through.
But there he is.