A week on that ship… Or was it two? Three? However long it actually was, it felt like an eternity. Wake up, eat a slice of stale bread, piss off the bow of the ship, then scrub the deck with an electric toothbrush. Then, eat another piece of stale bread, go to sleep in a sleeping bag on the deck of the boat. No shade, no pillow, no amenities whatsoever. Oh, and all the while you have the biggest asshole on the planet pushing and prodding every button imaginable.
Sorry Trip Advisor, but I’m going to have to give this a 1 Star, only because it won’t let me give a negative.
Well, the time has come for me to leave this shit hole. And I couldn’t get away quick enough! My bag is dragging along the ground behind me, literally, as the effort to lift it over my shoulder is just too damn much.
If I were a glass half full type of guy I guess I could point out the fact that the uniform that was 3 sizes too small to begin with, now fit like it normally should. Which really should worry me, but all I can think about is “How can I murder Cancerous Jiles, without getting caught…”
Sure, I should be focusing on Stephan Harrison at this time, but if you weren’t aware, perhaps you missed my previous submission, Harrison is a gnat. Where as Cancer Jiles is the Bubonic Plague of annoyance. Yes, I am aware that my waning focus could be my downfall, but I dare any one of you to spend a DAY with Cancer Jiles pushing your buttons and you tell me, where would your focus be?
Why does this have to be so fucking complicated.
Give me a match with a man like Kostoff. A guy who enters the ring to smash your face in. A guy so laser focused on the task at hand. A guy who would literally table flip with unsuppressed rage if he even attempted to play a mind game the likes of which Harrison and Jiles like to play.
Or, how about a guy like Conor Fuse. Yeah, give me Conor Fuse. At least I can enjoy the type of games he likes to play. We can sync up and kill some zombies in COD. Or even go old school and play a game or three of Super Mario 64, Happy Birthday Mario!
I’d even take a shot at Lindsay Troy, the Queen of the eGG Bandits! Someone, I don’t think I’ve ever faced. But even she doesn’t play the amount of mind games that Jiles does.
Listen to me, silly silly Bobby Dean. Already looking forward to future matches, completely ignoring the current task at hand. I guess, ultimately, it boils down to the lack of enthusiasm in the face of our upcoming match. Facing a guy like Harrison doesn’t really get my dick hard, if you know what I mean.
Beating him isn’t really a feather in my cap. Losing to him, shouldn’t really be a feather in his. I guess the plus side is, after this weekend, he can finally leave me alone! I hope.
The trek I’m on takes me from the boat, to an awaiting cab, on to the hotel nearest Madison Square Garden. After a quick check in, I find myself climbing into a nice hot, much needed shower. An hour and half later, I am finally lounging in a nice comfortable bed, wearing an equally nice and comfortable terry cloth robe. With my legs askew and the robe barely covering the bits and baubles downstairs, I simply lie back and bask in the air conditioned room with the telephone receiver lazily resting against my ear.
Ring, ring, ring, ring.
It takes forever but finally the other end picks up and the voice of my daughter greets me.
“Yeah?” she asks, in what I consider one of the worst ways to answer a phone.
“Belle?” I ask, uncertain by he greeting. Thinking, I could have just been unlucky and I could be talking to her mother right now.
“Oh, hey dad!” she greets with enthusiasm.
“Hey kiddo, how’s it going?” I’ve never been good with phone conversations. Much better with text messages, but after not talking to my daughter for the past week or two (or however long I was on that fucking ship), I figured I should be a good dad and give her a proper call.
She sighs, into the phone, which is rather annoying. “Okay, I guess. When am I coming back to your house? Where have you been for the last two weeks? I tried calling but never could get a hold of you. Are you ready for your big match this weekend? I’m worried for you, that guy you’re facing is probably going to beat you. Think Uncle Cancer will let me wear his world title after he beats Mike?”
Oh. My. God.
I know. I’m a horrible father. Absolutely horrible. But fuck me, can that kid talk! I don’t normally mind a game of 20 Questions, but I feel like she’s playing it wrong. You don’t just ask 20 questions as quickly as you can, you gotta let the other person answer, or at least take a breath in between the fucking questions!
Dialing the number again, I put the phone back up to my ear, with a bit more reluctance.
Ring, ring, ring.
“Yeah?” I’m beginning to think maybe I should have just stuck with text messages after all.
“Sorry ‘bout that, kiddo.” I say, with as much faux enthusiasm as I can muster. Which is probably as much enthusiasm as she can muster in her greetings when she answers the phone. “I guess I got disconnected there for a bit. Anyway, to answer some of your questions, I’ll pick you up Monday. I was stuck on a boat trip with your Uncle Cancer. He says Hi, by the way…”
No, he didn’t. He’s a self absorbed asshat.
“Uhm, yes, I am ready for my match this weekend. Kind of. And yes, he will probably beat me. Don’t they always?” I’m interrupted as my daughter laughs and begins talking. I guess I was done?
“Mom says you’re the Underdog on the Barstool Sportsbook, whatever that is.” she informs me, causing me to roll my eyes. “She was telling Grandma that she bet $200 bucks against you. She also mentioned something about a prop bet that you’ll end up being knocked out again…”
Hmmm, shit, I wonder if it’s in bad taste to bet against yourself? I mean, I have been eating A LOT of fucking knees here lately. Oh, and kicks too, thanks Cancer.
“Anywho,” I now interrupt her, refusing to even touch that subject. “How’s school going?”
“Fine.” she answers, complete deadpan.
“How are your friends?” I follow up.
“Good.” another answer, without emotion.
“Got any plans for the weekend?” I’m grasping at straws here boys.
“Nope.” she says, heavy emphasis on the P.
“Well this has been fun!” I say, my voice overflowing in sarcasm.
“Right!” she answers back, but with a laugh. “How was your boat trip with Uncle C?”
I literally shudder, simply thinking back on it, as if my mind had already gone through the process of trying to erase it. “The worst thing imaginable.”
“Uhm. If it was so bad why didn’t you just leave?” I’m sure that will be the million dollar question for everyone who bothered with that thing.
“Well, I guess, it’s like this…” before I could continue there was a knock on the door. “Hey kiddo, let me call you back a little later. I think my room service just arrived, and I’m starving!”
“Hello?” I ask the empty air. One thing that annoys me, possibly more than anything else in this world, is when my daughter simply hangs up the phone. No goodbye, no love you, no I’ll talk to you later. Just, click, done.
Scowling, I place the phone back down and make my way towards the door.
Three hours later and I’ve finally put down my spoon, now that it’s been licked clean from the ice cream it held mere seconds ago. I’m still in my room, with the sky nice and dark outside my windows. The stars shining bright, the moon on the rise, and here I am, lounging in bed, surrounded by empty plates, bowls, and a scattering of used silverware.
I’m reminded of the old days, except this time, I’m actually in quite a lot of pain. I haven’t felt this uncomfortable in ages! I regret eating so much, which is another first for me. Normally I would eat and eat and eat, and when the pains started I would either take a moment to digest and start again. Or I would go sit on the toilet, and then, start again.
Lying in bed, feeling miserable, the television zapper in my hand as I simply flip through channel after channel. Nothing keeps my interest for more than a second or two. Not even the adult channels, which is odd, because those normally can keep my attention for at least 25 seconds…
After a while, I find myself watching trailers for Upcoming Features, when the familiar face of Steven Harrison pops up. It appears to be a short promo commercial hyping the upcoming March To Glory. But I’m slightly confused, instead of hyping our match it’s basically showing Harrison’s recent victories over High Flyer, Jatt Starr, and Teddy Palmer. No recap of him getting his head caved in by Dan Ryan. But they sure didn’t mind showing his sneak attack on me.
It’s simply shot after shot, of Harrison. Intermixed with shots of me losing to Jatt Starr. Me getting kicked in the face by Cancer Jiles. And again, me getting attacked from behind by Harrison.
It ends with a still shot of the smirk of Harrison as he cheeses to the camera. A look that simply makes you want to punch him straight in the mouth. Or, perhaps I should take a page out of Dan Ryan’s book and simply hit him with an elbow!
Without a word, I shut the television off. Stewing. I climb out of bed, knocking over every plate and bowl that happens to be in the way. Back on my feet, I storm into my bathroom and slam the door shut behind me.
Minutes later, I’m in a pair of shorts, a plain jane eGG Bandits tee from efedtees.com, and a pair of running shoes. With my key card in hand, I power walk my way out of the room and towards the elevator. Waiting for the elevator car to arrive does not help calm me down, it does the exact opposite as my anger continues to roil.
With a huff, I roughly shove the door to the nearby stairwell open and begin my long walk down the seventeen flights of stairs. All thoughts of Cancer Jiles are gone. The stomach pains from overeating are still there, but they are not as debilitating. I can’t get that smarmy smirk out of my head.
Sure March To Glory won’t be a walk in the park for me, or for you! By God, I’m done being the laughing stock of the HOW. Steve, I’m going to surprise you! You’re expecting me to simply roll over for you, to be a stepping stone on your rise to the top. I hate to disappoint, but I sure hope you like the taste of my salty nuts. Because come Sunday, I’m going to have your face stuffed deep in my tights, before I drop you on your fucking head.