Saturday, November 23, 2013

Day 111 of 365: Relatable

I've already talked about female MMA fighters -- specifically Gina Carano. And now I'm going to talk about the other queen in female MMA: Rhonda Rousey.

Rhonda Rousey is a tough fighter. Anyone who doubts why she is the champion has obviously never seen her fight. She gets a look in her face that would make a grown man cower. She has an arm-bar that has broken an arm or two. And she has no issues going toe-to-toe with interviewers who are more interested in her as a walking set of boobs than a fighter.

Rhonda -- along with Meisha Tate -- have been coaching this season of "The Ultimate Fighter" (aka one of the few actual reality shows out there). Cameras follow 18 fighters as they compete for a UFC contract. No dumbass gimmicks, no "alliances", no voting anyone off any island. Just 18 fighters fighting each other and the best man (or woman) wins.

I have never been one to relate to Rhonda Rousey. I'm probably on the other end of tough. I cry when I watch YouTube videos of soldiers returning to their children. I start wringing my hands over the tiniest reason to be nervous. I'm emotional and I'm overly critical of myself.

In the last episode, one of Rhonda's fighters couldn't make weight. He had over 5 pounds to lose on weight day and was doing everything to delay cutting more weight (Google "fighters making weight" to see what fighters have to go through to make weight in time for a fight). I watched as Rhonda nervously walking around the gym and fretted over the fighter's future and got upset when she realized her fighter was quitting. When the fighter was ultimately disqualified for not making weight, Rhonda suggested that she make weight for that following Tuesday as penance. As she saw it, since she couldn't get her own fighter to make weight, she'd go through the rigorous task herself. You could see how much it bothered her that one of her fighters lost over something like weight (which is a huge rarity for the show).

And like that, I realized there was as much difference between me and Rhonda Rousey as I had previously thought. Don't get me wrong: she could kick my ass any day of the week, while jetlagged, blindfolded, and battling the flu. But I saw a lot of myself in that episode. The nervousness over something you don't have any control over. The emotional responses. Feeling like it's your fault, like somehow you could've done more. The berating of oneself and the need to somehow "right" the wrongs by essentially going martyr.

There isn't much point to this entry, other than it's incredible to realize that you have more in common with some people than you think. Everyone has a second side, everyone has had experiences that you can relate to. Even kick-ass, solid people like Rhonda Rousey.

No comments:

Post a Comment