Monday, July 28, 2008

The Joys of Fighting

I sparred for a half-hour today with one of my oldest friends. Si is out of shape and has a sizable Buddha belly but he's also 6'2 and 240, plenty of which is muscle. We agreed to try and to restrain our blows to the head, the groin and the joints, but everything else was fair game.

Si isn't a boxer, he's a martial artist (Indonesian kung-fu) but he isn't afraid of contact. We had some great exchanges on a field in a kiddie park while the bemused mommies looked on. It's good practice for me to go against his skills because he's always looking for kicks and throws, while I'm much more focused on striking.

As normally happens, he pushed me around the field with his reach, weight and height advantage. But it wasn't so one-sided as to be dull. I landed some good combination on his body and danced away from all but one of his throws. Since I'm about a hundred times more fit than him, I began to score more frequently as the fighting went on. Towards the end we forgot about our restraints and were going close to full, fists and feet flying. Sweat made a bib on the front of Si's blue oxford.

I ended up with some bloody cuts, a fat lip and the beginnings of a black eye. Yet I was blissful when we finished. I loved mixing it up - in a friendly sort of way - when I was seven and I love it now. It brings flavor to life.


Steve Imparl said...

Glad you had a good time. Sounds like a blast. It's a shame I missed it! Got video? :-)

Have you ever noticed that some of your most intense fights are with your closest friends?

In the interest of protecting our hands, my buddies and I have generally worn boxing gloves for such epic battles, but the fights were not lacking in intensity.

Over the years, I've observed that the better friends I am with the guy, the more likely we are to really pound the hell out of each other.

I suppose this is one of those male-bonding of "guy" things. One time, when I was going to box with my good buddy Jeff (before he up and moved to Nashville--GRRR), my girlfriend at the time asked me, "He's your friend, so how can you hit him?" My reply was simple: "My dear, because he's my friend, I'll hit him harder and a lot more often." She gave me a blank stare.

Robot Boy said...

I'd like to get Si into gloves but he uses a lot of chops and palm strikes. I can hit him hard because he's so big but man, it hurts punching an elbow.
I agree you can go harder with a friend that you trust. Although even good friends can lose their tempers pretty quickly.

Benedict Smith said...

no better feeling than after sparring/fighting when the ache of your lungs have subsided and the scream of aching muscles has mititaged not fully but partially...

Robot Boy said...

Exactly, unless you actually tasted the canvas (which has only happened to me once), it all feels pretty good.