Monday, March 17, 2008

There Will Be Blood

Pat Muir has a strong piece on backyard fight clubs in last weekend's Yakima Herald Republic. Pat, a long-time appreciator of the friendly brawl, leads off the story with this:

The thing that stands out is the blood.

It's not the friendly banter between Vengeance and Nasty Rob as they exchange blows. It's not the assorted characters cheering the fight, although little Ricky with the mohawk is probably worth his own story. It's not the thud, the deep, hollow sound of 450 pounds of two bodies hitting a dead lawn.

It's the blood, pouring down Nasty Rob's face and clogging his nose. Blood dripping onto the grass and the walkway. Blood stifling his breath to the point where he has to quit. That's what everyone is here for. That's why people will watch this fight when it's posted on YouTube.

It's the blood.

The piece continues with quotes from some experts trying to explain why in God's name anyone would take up such a habit, and some beautiful narrative by Pat detailing the day's fight. Well worth your time.

Story here and audio/video here.

YouTube clips here (with Pat in the background). Warning: very violent.


Pat said...

Thanks for the kind words, Craig.

A couple of things to note:

1. For some reason our Web site doesn't have the sidebar from the piece explaining how popular these sort of fights are on Youtube and how the law treats them. Basically: They're popular but questionably legal at best. Interestingly, in Washington it's organizers and promoters who are at the most risk for criminal charges, not fighters. Of course fighters would be criminally liable if there were serious injuries or death, or if they refused to stop when the other guy quits.

2. I cannot say that I condone this sort of very violent activity. But, I do understand the appeal to some degree. As some of my fellow State News alums may remember, I was hired as an intern after coming in for an interview with an epic black eye.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to know they hugged it out afterward. Great lead sentence there, Patrick.