Posted by: Will | July 15, 2008

From Romi


This very funny post is from one of my favorite (favourite…right Romi?) bloggers of all time. You can check her out at Year Of The Chick and I highly recommend it too. Her unabashed honesty and wit is rivaled by no one. It’s great to read someone’s site and say, “that’s so true! Why didn’t I ever think to say that?” Warning, don’t eat or drink while reading. Chocking is probable. So without further ado, I present Romi.

Fitness War: Wrestling vs. Interpretive Dance

It’s been 13 years since I found myself in Junior High gym class.


That seems appropriate, since it’s probably not okay for a 27-year-old woman to give out “well done!” post-game ass
-slaps to 12 year olds.

Even if it’s been a while, I’m not so old that I’ve replaced my actual memories with scenes from the “Wonder Years”.  And yet, sometimes I feel like it was a TV show…

***

Year: 1993
Age: 12
Body-Type: Tall, boyish, small amount of junk in the trunk

***

Three weeks of basketball and finally the embarrassment of air balls and double-dribbles were over.

Time to move on to something fun.

Our gym teachers (one male, one female) announced that wresting was next on the agenda.  Well…wresting and interpretive dance, to be exact (hmm…is that a new Olympic Sport?).

I quickly realized that the boys would be doing the wrestling, whilst the girls would be gyrating awkwardly to a song that didn’t match.

I had never known a thing about dancing (interpretive or otherwise), but I didn’t enjoy being cock-blocked from wrestling.

And why couldn’t I partake?

Pretty simple: it was just because I didn’t have one of those “penis” thingys (a male organ I didn’t know a lot about in 1993…I still don’t know a lot about it now, but that’s another story that I’ll save for my bottle of Prozac)…

Despite the inherent disappointment that comes from being born without a “package”, I decided to pull up my socks and give this new-age dancing a try.

The gym was split into two, with a thin wooden wall that would shield our sexy dancing from the wrestlers’ prying eyes.

Now when it comes to “interpretive dance for 12-year olds”, there isn’t a lot of technique to the affair.  In fact, there’s nothing more to it than an overweight woman in a flower-printed wind-suit, showing some girls how to move their arms to and fro.

I should probably mention that the advanced interpretive dancers got to use ribbons…and no I didn’t get one….dammit.

Though I never moved up to “ribbon” status, my dancing improved in the weeks to come.

After lots of practice, it was time to show off our skills in the end-of-term “Interpretive Dance” showcase.

And so, for the next 4 minutes and 6 seconds, we KILLED Bryan Adams’ “Everything I Do, I Do It For You” with our awesome moves!

I’m not gonna lie, I enjoyed the attention of 15 males, I really did.

By the time we finished our dance, it was time for the boys to put out the mats and show us their wrestling skills.

As soon as the first pair of pasty-thighed boys locked into position, I was entranced.

The grunting, the intensity of the throw-downs, the sweat-beads…it was exhilarating!

And all the while in interpretive-dance world, I’d been moving my arms to the tune of zero aggression (and almost zero calorie-loss).

As I watched the hefty kid (who I was sure ate pizza + donuts for a living) squeeze the life out of his tiny opponent, I became  enraged: why couldn’t girls do this to each other?

These weren’t the beginnings of lesbianism I assure you, but it was the athletic aspect of it all: kick ass and get in shape…GRRR!…

…It was a dream I never realized, and I can only hope that the school in my town is a lot more forward-thinking now.  That’s right, girls should be totally free to tackle/grab at each other for sport, and I’m sure there’s no shortage of boys that would like to watch (it’s what we call a “win-win”).

On a personal level, sometimes I wonder what would’ve happened to my life if I’d wrestled at age 12.  There’s a chance that I could’ve become the top female wrestler in my region…and maybe eventually, world champion?  There’s also a chance that the wrestling could’ve helped me grow some muscles on my own (which might’ve stopped me from taking all those ‘roids in the late 90’s).

But most of all, if I had done intense activities like wrestling back in the day vs. the relative inertia that is “Junior High Interpretive Dance”, maybe I wouldn’t be struggling to lose these last 15 pounds…

Thanks for NOTHING Bryan Adams!

Romi
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Responses

  1. I too went through a similar situation, but I would’ve rather done the interpritive dance, something about a bunch of guys in tights doing grabs and holds on each other just seems sort of gayer than ribbon dancing, which looks really bad ass by the way,

    Favourite??
    I didn’t realize you we’re a Canadian too Romi!
    We’re taking over the blog world I tells ya!
    Great post.

  2. Great story! Yeah, wrestling never really was my bag, either. Was pretty useless when it came to basketball too. Just too darn short. But, I could run like the wind, so I really enjoyed baseball and later got pretty serious into Tae Kwon Do and did really well at that. I can’t wait to get back into it again. It seems my middle school gym days were spent with me sitting on bleachers reading Stephen King novels and pining over the red-head girl in the 7th grade while everyone else played ping-pong.

  3. We played “flag” football which turned out to be girls punching and scratching each other. We weren’t issued pads because the coaches thought we’d get hurt. Now I know my math skills are pretty much crap, but I’m having a hard time with this logic? Tacking = bruises so no pads, but puching + scratching x hair pulling = a good time for all those male observers???

    I must disagree when you said “Now when it comes to ‘interpretive dance for 12-year olds’, there isn’t a lot of technique to the affair.” I was watching the Britney Spears meltdown special last night on Vh1 and apparently, she had the technique of a stripper when she was a wee lass of 10.

  4. JoshC: hey there…indeed I am a child of all things Maple Syrup and “eh”, and now I’ve got another Canadian blog to read, woo-hoo! 🙂

    PS: ribbon-dancing is “bad ass”?? Unless those ribbons come with ninja stars sewn onto them, I think NOT….

    DJ D: I’m glad you enjoyed the read 🙂 …and hey: tae kwon do? Now THAT is badass…I hope it helped you score a bunch of hot red-heads later on, haha 😉

    Pammy Girl: I really love hearing other people’s nostalgia, and ya, I remember flag football too…in our case it was called “touch football”, and that just sounds inappropriate in itself 😉

    PS: OH WOW….so basically “young Britney” was a Mickey-Mouse-Clubber by day and child-stripper by night? Talk about versatility, haha 🙂

    Yo Billy: thanks for posting my story! And it’s so cool that you know about things like “favourite”, and “colour” and…”cheque” (Americans don’t use the “que” do they? Hmm…I’m thinking not, and my only frame of reference is that Disney movie called “Blank Check”…wow that is sad, haha 🙂 )

  5. We played a lot of softball and did a lot of running. I was never good with playing sports. So, I joined the track team in high school and sprained my ankle pretty bad. I guess I wasn’t so good with walking either. Odd thing is I was a cheerleader and gymnast when I was younger…you’d think I’d have kept a little coordination!

  6. We played a game called “smear the queer”. No shit, that’s what the coach called it. It was basically a bunch of kids beating the snot out of who ever was holding the football at the time.

  7. […] it out!  Anyway he just expanded his breadth of humour/life-talks into a fitness blog, and there (over here) you’ll find a story of a 12-year-old Romi, a thirst for wrestling, and interpretive dance […]

  8. dc12: wow, I always admired the gymast-girls in grade-school…like no matter how many attempts I put to it, I could never get over that pommel horse thingy….I’d just run up to it, grab the handles and stop….what was wrong with me? And don’t even get me started on parallel bars; pretty much me in one position hanging upside down like a bat..lol 😉

    Billy: “Smear the Queer”!?!?!? Are you serious? Wow, your school was a lot tougher than mine….I imagine the boys must’ve tried to run away from the ball for the sake of their reputation…

  9. I can so picture you doing interpretive dance to Bryan Adams Rom! Great story.
    As for tackle/grabbing women… YEEHAH! I’m all for that! 😉

  10. We had completely separate boys and girls PE when I was in high school. When we were in the wrestling unit, the girls were doing some sort of gymnastics, and both took place far from the eyesight of the others. Too bad – wrestling was one of the few PE things I was good at, as long as I wrestled someone remotely near my own weight.

    My tiny female first cousin, who’s about your age, DID join the school wrestling team, though. And from what I heard (I was in grad school at the time) she kicked ass.

  11. Romi: Yeah, the pommel horse was a pain. But we did vault routines mostly. And I would fall off those parallel bars ALL the time. I actually was better at floor routines and doing back flips. That was 20 years ago. Now I can’t imagine trying to do that. And that 3 inch beam..sheesh! I always fell off it in a scissor position causing me to slam my legs on it all the time. I don’t miss gymnastics at all! 😉

  12. Ha, awesome. Yeah Romes might not be struggling to lose any weight, but she’d probably be walking around with huge man arms and a mustache shooting steriods into her scrotum. The reason chicks can’t wrestle is because you don’t ever want a gymnasium full of teenage boys in unitards with little pubescent erections. Plus huge muscley chicks are gross, cause they look like dudes.

  13. Junior high gym was quite traumatic for me. Especially square-dancing week. The girls had to take their places first and wait for the whistle that signalled the boys to thunder from the bleachers and pick their partner. I always prayed that sweaty palm-Phil didn’t get to me first. Yee-haw.

  14. Simonne: yes, for some reason I can see you as being a worthy opponent in Girls’ Wrestling 😉

    Taoist Biker: too bad about the huge seperation between your Boys’ and Girls’ gym class; I would have loved to see you “work it” on the wrestling mat, haha 😉

    DC: I once knew a girl who could do a back-flip on that tiny 3 inch balance beam you refer to. I hated her.

    Josh: the image of masculinized-Romi shooting up into her scrotum is frickin’ PRICELESS 🙂

    PS: keeping with the imagery, the idea of teenage boys in “onesies” with little erections is horribly wrong but oh so hilarious 🙂

    Allison: ewwww…..does sweaty-palm-Phil have a cousin/brother in every city? ‘Cause I swear I knew one of those!

    Billy: thanks for letting me make camp on Macabre Fitness for so many days; wanna roast some marshmallows? 😉


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