My favourite thing about winter is watching it on television from sunny California.
Skimming through Monday’s Battle Creek weather forecast fills me with dread. Low temps, wind, rain, and maybe even a scattering of the white stuff. Brilliant.
Growing-up in Aberdeen’s Winterfell-esque climate only makes me appreciate my San Diego base all the more. Frankly, I’ve had enough gales and frost to last me a lifetime, but if that’s where my job takes me, I’ll go without complaint.
I’ve been weathering storms all my life, and not just in a literal sense. Towns like Aberdeen are battered by the elements on the daily. I’ve wrestled with tempestuousness since the day I was born, externally and internally, and that’s not gonna stop any time soon.
I see the grey clouds ahead. I don’t know what The Pantheon’s got planned for me, but I know it’ll be swift and brutal. You don’t jump into a fight with men like Dane and Thorpe if you’re not willing to take a battering for your cause. I’ve no doubt they’re already brewing up a storm for Jeff, Will and I, but I’m ready for it. If I wasn’t, I wouldn’t have put my neck on the line.
So I’ll go to Michigan. I’ll do all I can to put-on the Match of the Year with Will, but you’d best believe I’ll be walking around with eyes on the back of my head. Regardless of who is or isn’t watching my back.
It started last week, and it’s not gonna end ‘til we’ve blown a hurricane through the United Toughness Alliance.
Eric Dane, the Big Bad.
Colton Thorpe, my old friend.
Bobby Dean, the turncoat.
Madman Szalinski, the coward.
… and whoever else the grand dictator scoops-up along the way. I’ll fight them all ‘til the day I can fight no longer. Last week was the prologue: this week, it starts for real.
But it’s not the only storm I’ll have to pass through in coming months, for that night in February fast approaches.
That date, which has brought me nothing but turmoil and regret for five long years, falls on the same night as All or Nothing. A night on which everyone in the UTA enters the meatgrinder in one almighty landscape-changing cataclysm of a match.
A date on which I am at my weakest, year after year after goddamn year.
Maybe I’ll tell you about it nearer the time. Maybe I won’t. Either way, it’s coming, and there’s nothing I can do to avoid it.
But first its Haynes, The Pantheon, and whoever else shows-up on my timeline between now and then.