Flog (fake blog) posts return to this space Monday after a hiatus lasting since January 2008. I hope to roll a new one out every Monday, just as I plan to revisit Pot Luck Theater on Fridays. That depends, of course, on many factors, such as unpredictable craziness and the phases of my star-signs. I always enjoyed writing Flogs; not sure why I stopped, but I guess all that matters is that they’re back. So this Monday, in addition to being Labor Day, will be New Flog Day at The Fictioneer! I hope you’ll drop by and check it out. Meanwhile, to whet your appetite, here’s a classic Flog from the archives. Enjoy, and see you soon!
Big Red and Corn Stalk’s Rasslin’ Workout
Big Red was really big, over 300 pounds, with shaggy red hair and a bushy red beard. When he walked past me in the gym, he glared, holding my gaze with rage–or was it an astigmatism? His eyes had that kind of almost-crossed look that makes you wonder.
He marched across the basketball court like a king in his white-and-blue t-shirt and shorts, followed by his retinue: a scrawny corn-stalk of a man, all knuckles and Adam’s apples, in a John Deere ballcap and beat-to-hell leather jacket. Corn stalk twitched back and forth in Big Red’s wake like a wild rat trailing a groundhog, hoping for a dinner ten times his size.
I was shooting baskets around the hoop at center court, but Big Red and Corn Stalk had plans for a workout of their own. The next thing I knew, they dragged a black rubber mat across the floor and flopped it down at one end of the court.
I was annoyed, because I didn’t want company. I was only planning to shoot for another five minutes, and I didn’t want to have to work around someone else. I didn’t want to be bothered.
Little did I know just how bothered I would be.
After planting the rubber mat on the floor, Big Red and Corn Stalk crouched and circled it, staring grimly and silently at each other. Arms held loosely at their sides, they circled one way, then the other, occasionally feinting with a hand or foot or shoulder. Then, with a primal roar, Big Red lunged, plowing Corn Stalk to the mat. Once down, they proceeded to wrestle.
Big Red rolled back and forth on top of Corn Stalk, grunting and twisting. Corn Stalk flailed his arms and legs, at least until Big Red pinned them. The two of them lay there on the mat, Big Red’s sweaty girth immobilizing Corn Stalk, until Big Red decided he was pleased with the outcome. Then, Big Red rolled off Corn Stalk, bounced to his feet, and straightened his white-and-blue t-shirt. Corn Stalk retrieved his John Deere ballcap and stuck it back on his head, preparing for the next round.
By this time, I’d watched as much of the car wreck as I cared to. I headed for the door, determined to get out before the next round got underway.
Unfortunately, this got Big Red’s attention.
“You!” he roared, pointing at the rubber mat. “You’re next!”
“Thanks anyway,” I said in a friendly voice. “Gotta get back to the office.”
Big Red moved to block one door. Corn Stalk skittered over to block the other.
My heart pounded as the trap closed around me. I picked what looked like the lesser danger and ran toward Corn Stalk.
As Big Red bounded across the floor behind me, I leaped into what became a half-slap-fight, half-kick-fight with Corn Stalk. He head-butted me once, sending me reeling…and Big Red’s footsteps got closer.
With one last burst of desperate energy, I pushed past Corn Stalk and charged out the door of the gymnasium. I bolted down the hallway with Big Red close behind and innocent bystanders flying in all directions.
I hurtled through the door to the swimming pool area and froze. The pool was drained, its floor covered with black rubber mats. Dozens of people stood around the edge, all of them weirdos, all of them grinning at me.
Big Red strolled through the door, barely out of breath, and cracked his knuckles and farted.
That was when I realized that this what he’d wanted all along.