An enormous vinyl poster of the moment in the ring when PTT won the Omnoi Isuzu tournament – a giant faux key in his hand to represent the truck he won and a cardboard sign reading 1,000,000 Baht for his prize money – hangs on the far side of our training ring. The poster is so big that it has blocked off most of the breeze that occasionally makes its way into the gym and also holds in the light from the bare bulbs just under the rafters of the ring. It is weighed down at the bottom corners, kept
November 16, 2016 – Loi Kroh Stadium, Chiang Mai – above: full fight video with commentary Kevin and I park the rental car down this very narrow alleyway that shuttles mostly motorbikes and tuk-tuks between the bar-laden Soi Loi Kroh and the perpetually empty bit of road just before the lower corner of the moat that surrounds the old city in Chiang Mai. The mouth of the alley is choked with motorbikes and pedestrians, as well as noises and disco lights from the various bars. As you progress through the narrow road it grows dark and quiet, the car has
I’ve written about this before, but here is a little more on it. In my 173 fights, I’ve generally fought opponents bigger than myself, both in Thailand and in my amateur fights in America. It’s just the lot I’ve drawn in being the size that I am – I’m just small. Sometimes it’s a small difference, but sometimes the difference is quite notable. The frequency with which the size disparity presents itself in my fight path, about 70% of the time, has led me to misunderstand my own size – as well as for the majority of promoters who book
November 8, 2016 – Thapae Stadium, Chiang Mai – full fight video above This fight required a lot of back and forth with the promoter. On October 13, 2016 His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Rama 9, passed away and the country fell into a period of mourning. It was a huge shock and has been a very sad time. As part of paying respect to His Majesty there was a moratorium on all celebratory events, no music, television was only Royal News with no entertainment programs, and fights in Bangkok were all cancelled for a 30 day period. There are
above, my vlog today on the mental hurdles of fighting frequently, and choosing your suffering Today’s vlog is a little walk down my apartment street. It’s mostly about my mental state facing a fight only a few days after a significant loss, and a now two consecutive losses in a row. When you fight like this a long losing streak can be compressed into just a few weeks, and entering into another fight involves coming off that difficult energy. This is about the turnaround and that mental hill you have to climb when you’ve been fighting like this for years.
October 8, 2016 – Buriram “Sylvie Lookboonmee” – full fight video above with audio commentary I got cut from a headbutt in my fight the night before this one. The doctor refused to give me stitches because the cut was so small – and maybe he wasn’t fully equipped to do so – but it would have been maybe 1-2 stitches anyway. Since he refused to sew me up, we decided I could go ahead and fight the next night rather than cancelling, which stitches would definitely require. Driving the next morning from Khorat to Buriram was the first time in
Apologies to my younger readers, this post is laced with profanity. Sometimes profanity has a special power to describe things in ways other words can’t. The plastic stool underneath me is too far out from the actual corner and my body kind of tips backwards as my cornermen lift my legs into their hands and rub icy cold water on my thighs and shins. I try to balance myself on the ropes but it’s more awkward and I reposition my forearms to the tops of my thighs; the cold water is going over my head now, which feels nice because
This is my second informal interview with Dr. John Byron Gassaway, who is a practicing Sport Psychologist and also my brother. John was a Captain America, Superman type athlete growing up, playing multiple sports through every season and maintaining a nearly perfect GPA – the kind of guy who somehow managed to squeeze 25 hours out of every day. His mental toughness seemed to me to always have been there and it only makes sense that he’d help others find their own path toward the same, seemingly inherent, self-esteem. But, you know, what things seem from the outside and how they