Hi there, this is VeVe guest-posting here. This is an account of the crazy, marathon bondage wrestling match that I just had with Kevin a few hours ago. It's cross-posted from VeVe's Wrestling Blog. Enjoy!
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Oh, my fucking god. Well, whatever else I might have written about this week just got blown out of my mind by the insane bondage wrestling match I just had with Kevin. I'm recovering/refueling right now with a ton of sushi and some nice red wine, and it's fresh in my mind. So that's it; that's what this post will be: a report on that match.
I can't do a play-by-play because there's actually TOO much for me to remember (by "fresh" I may have meant kind of a blur). Diablo actually had to pause us in the middle of the match to change the camera battery -- that's how long this marathon went on! It also meant that at the end, we weren't totally sure how long we'd gone -- we guessed 90 minutes. But Diablo just put the two parts into the editing program, and told me it came to almost two hours!
So no play-by-play. Here are an overview and my general impressions.
I had fought Kevin before early last fall, so I knew he was going to be tough. He's a solid wrestler and grappler (with training in both styles) and solid in terms of size too -- he was 180 last fall. I didn't think it would matter much, but I was pleased going into this match that I'd bulked up 10 pounds since last time. The sneaky bastard had too! He was 190 today. Plus, I knew that Kevin was the sort who really wanted to win and wouldn't give up for practically anything.
When we fought last fall (a combo of facesit pins style and submission style), it took me about 30 minutes to get a submission on him. I knew this would be harder. I maintain that a basic quality of bondage wrestling is that it's harder than submission wrestling -- you can get a submission from countless different positions; when it's on right, it only has to last a split second; and when it's over, it's over. When you get a good tying position on someone, it has to be somewhere that hides the knot from their hands and teeth; I have to hold it long enough to get the knot tied; and once it's done, it has to keep holding while they struggle and I work to tie other limbs. A huge advantage of mine is that most other people aren't experienced with how to finish a tie in competitive real time, but huge advantages of my opponents (especially big strong ones) are that they don't need to finish a tie to make a few wraps of the rope into an annoying handicap and that they can be extremely frustrating by just focusing on removing ties.
So we jumped in. Right away I was reminded of my tangle with Danger Dude in the Battle of the Sexes 4-Way Bondage Wrestling. Smaller or less skilled opponents aren't much trouble for me to sweep over and then attack from on top, but bigger, experienced guys can make me fight from the bottom. It's a fine position for BJJ, but, honestly, I don't usually have to deal with that in bondage wrestling. I experimented for a while to see if I could rope Kevin from the bottom of guard, but he kept pulling his arms up and out (and all the while attempting to wrap my arms as well). This went on long enough to become aggravating and tiring. I realized this was too much like the match with Danger Dude -- it wasn't a particular opponent thing but a general thing -- bottom of guard is a crummy place to secure ties.
I realized I had two options -- eliminate distractions, throw the ropes away for a while, and rely on pure grappling technique to the get a sweep; or rope a leg instead of an arm and use the attachment to force the sweep. Either way I needed a big effort to get on top. Well, I went for my big effort -- a few times, in a few different ways, I think -- and at one point we broke apart...I dove for his ankle...he sprawled on top of me to defend...I caught myself with my hand turned just a little funny...and I sprained my thumb.
Oh, no!! That was about the worst thing that could have happened. Thumbs are pretty damn important for tying ropes. They're also important for all kinds of grabbing, catching, propping, and pushing in grappling. What had already been a hard match just became colossally challenging. But neither Kevin nor I was about to give up.
I admit things became a bit of a mess and kind of emotional after that. With my thumb hurting and also frustrating the hell out of me when it wouldn't work as well as I wanted, and with the match getting longer and longer and more exhausting, AND with my needing to call up some pretty big bursts of strength to move Kevin around, AAAANND with him torturing me by escaping several times from ties that were SO close, I went into drama mode. I did a lot of yelling, sometimes from exertion and sometimes from frustration.
Kevin, obnoxiously, thought this was funny instead of terrifying. He was clever enough to steal some rest at various times when I was working to tie him, and explode out when he'd caught his breath and I was just about to get somewhere with the knots. He kept threatening me too, and at one point when I was just too tired to do much about it, he almost had me...but the ropework was too messy to hold once I caught my breath. Two can play at that game, Kevin!
I'm not going to give away the ending here, but what I will say is that that was one of the hardest, and definitely the longest, match of my life. And two hours in there was a final tie. What finally made the difference was a pull-out-the-stops, tight-as-hell chicken-wing tie. But how it happened, and to whom, and what happened next is a secret! ...until the video comes out.