The Change-Up 2 : Freaky Friday 5 The Hot Tub Time Machine

I figured it out.  Cori and Eugenia, aka Nightmare Violence Connection, act like they’re characters in one of those stupid movies where people switch bodies.  They’re dude bros that grabbed a witch’s ass so she put a curse on them.  They’ve been gender swapped so they can learn respect for women.  Except instead they woke up, felt their own tits, then shrugged and said “I guess I’m a chick now” and went on living their lives just like they did before.

I thought it was an act at first but I think this is just how they are.  I drink, but I never go out drinking.  42561 doesn’t drink at all.  She’s very uptight about what she puts in her body.  Yet somehow after the show, we ended up out at the bar with the NVC.  They have a weird way of asking something and you say no but then suddenly you’re doing it.

After we got asked to leave Spanky P’s and we ditched Fat Bosses Pub because, as Eugenia said, there was “no beef in the freezer” and we got the last call at The Ugly Lime, we ended up in the hot tub at the Comfort Suites.  I’m only 50% sure that’s where they were staying. 

This is where things got weird.  And not the kind of weird you might want for 4 drunk women in a hot tub after dark.  I noticed that amongst her many other tattoos, Eugenia had ink that was a bunch of words and symbols that included the words “Eterno Corazon Inmortal”.

I asked her if she was a big fan or if he had trained her or why did she have his name on her body and she said “Nah, that’s just a guy I’m going to kill.”

Cori added “Once we find the staff.”

Eugenia nodded “Yeah, once we find the staff.  I like to get a tattoo of all the immortal parasites I’m going to kill.”

Cori laughed “They’re hardly immortal since we kill them.”

Then they started bickering about what immortal means.

Parts Unknown

Every few months Longhorn Wrestling has a big show in the teeming metropolis of Abilene.  Feuds are blown off, new rivalries are stated, titles change hands, friends become bitter enemies, north Texas wrestlers who hang drywall during the week become gods, all in front of as many as 600 people.  I shouldn’t make fun, that’s a good crowd.

Last night the Abilene Convention Center was the host to the wildest match I’ve ever been a part of.  Instead of the usual fanservice Hooter’s waitresses we usually lose to, 42561 and I faced Eugenia Fernandez and Cori Ridgeback – aka The Nightmare Violence Connection.  These broads are out of their minds.

I can’t say why, maybe it was the purple tiger-striped pants Eugenia was wearing, or the sunglasses, or big curly hair, or maybe it was just the way they acted but they seemed like an old tag team from the 80s.  They reminded me of Stan Hanson and Bruiser Brodie in Japan.  Only women.  And in Abilene Texas instead of Japan.

They didn’t even talk to us before the match.  When they came down to the ring to Mariah Carey’s “Dream Lover” that was the first time we clapped eyes on them.  42561 and I looked at each other like “what is this bullshit?”  After shoving a fan and almost getting into a fight in the aisle they charged the ring, beat up the referee, and then started swinging chairs at us.  

I can’t say that it felt like fighting for my life because I’ve done that for real.  But it didn’t feel like a wrestling match.  I’m not sure if it was a cooperative shoot or an uncooperative work.  At one point I was squared off with Eugenia in the crowd and she ate some popcorn out of someone’s bucket and when he said something about it she spat it back in his face and then hit me with a superkick without even looking. 

It was really something. 

I’m not sure anyone even won the match.  Eventually we were just backstage.  Cori was drinking a 40 and Eugenia was on the phone screaming at someone about child support.  Sometimes you run into an old dude that likes to just hang around the locker room naked but I’ve never seen a woman do that before.  Cori was tits out, bare ass on a fucking cold metal folding chair.  She had a towel but it was around her shoulders like that was doing anything.

Misinterpreting my dismay she looked over at Eugenia and then winked at me “Don’t worry about her, she’s fine.”  And then followed that up with “You guys like to get high?”

Magic theory? Punch someone already!

I’ve been looking through Royale’s notes.  I wanted to see if he had any information about Hermetics.  Which he does.  I’ll get to that.  I have to talk about something else first.  I found journal entries that detail tracking down and defeating a blood mage.  Based on when we talked, it may be the only one he encountered. 

What’s disturbing is that after he chronicles the events, he writes at length that he doesn’t think that blood magic is inherently evil.  He admits that it seems like blood mages are all evil but the act itself, he writes, doesn’t have to be.  He talks about how in several instances, wizards sacrificed their lives to cast a spell – stopping a flood, turning back an avalanche, banishing some kind of evil force – which he says is blood magic even though no one wants to admit it.

This is may be true but I don’t like hearing it.  I admit that I put Royale on a pedestal, which is never wise.  But I still think he was a legitimately good person.  Right or wrong it makes me ill to read him saying that blood magic is “misunderstood”.  It’s like when you find out that Abraham Lincoln didn’t free all the slaves.  It doesn’t sit right.

Anyway, Hermetics.  Royale counted many of them as his close allies.  Nothing in his writings states it’s anything that should be feared on the face of it.  The basis of hermeticism is that all magic is actually done the same way even if you don’t realize it.  That it can all be written down and codified.  That magic is as rational a force as gravity and can be understood the same way.

I know this isn’t true.  Royale wrote that this philosophy is helpful for a lot of people but ultimately stifles their potential because it tries to make everyone do magic the same way.  Royale says that magic is based on creativity and mystery.  The key to magic is an open mind.  He told me that the rituals and the words and all that is just for show.  A truly awakened caster wouldn’t need to do any of that.  Their will would be done at a thought.  If they had the power to back it up.

But.  And there’s a big but.  He goes on to say restricting creatively may be a good thing.  In a world of unrestricted magic and free magic, one lunatic could be an atomic bomb.  He talks about a girl in Burma who wiped out an entire village who never had any formal training.  Her instinctual abilities were to destroy.

He theorizes that Hermetic mages may know exactly what they’re doing by codifying/stifling magic and are intentionally trying to build in training wheels that you can’t ever take off.  He goes on to say that Hermetics and their way of doing magic may be responsible for the way magic has grown weaker and weaker.  That it may be by their design.  That a world without magic may be safer for everyone.

It’s a lot to think about.

Thinking out loud

In between shows for Chadd 2 Badd, 42561 and I took a detour to hit a show in Abilene.  It was a Christian wrestling show.  I’ve known about them but never been to one before. 

Like with real athletes, there’s a strong streak of born-again Christians in the wrestling community.  It makes sense.  When you spend 20 years doing drugs, committing sexual assault, and neglecting your family, the concept of forgiveness is going to be appealing. 

It’s easy to see why Christianity caught on.  Do whatever evil shit you want and then you say sorry and it’s fine.  What’s scary is that it’s on the wane now.  Why is that scary?  Because that means people don’t even care about getting away with evil shit now. 

Wrestling seems like a weird thing to mix with religion, but if god didn’t like violence he wouldn’t make so many violent people right?  And he wouldn’t make everyone else love watching it.  It really wasn’t much different from a normal wrestling show. 

The thing that was different was the Nazis.  Not in the crowd.  I mean I hope not.  42561 and I wrestled a tag team called Ubermadchen and they were doing a straight up Nazi gimmick.  That was a thing in wrestling in the 30s, I’ve heard. I was shocked that it was happening in modern times. 

It really made me wonder what being a wrestling heel is.  I don’t think bad guys do enough to cross the line in wrestling.  To really make people mad.  I’ve said before that my goal as a heel is to rile people up like in the old days when and old lady would try to hit you with her cane. 

But I have my limits.  Should I judge these women because they don’t?  Or at least have different limits than me?  Is there a line where some villains shouldn’t be presented in any light, even that of being defeated? 

Once in a while in the south, I see someone with a KKK gimmick.  It makes me uneasy even though they’re being portrayed as buffoons.  If you have an utterly reprehensible character and you don’t try to gain any sympathy for them, does that make it “okay”? 

I watched a movie where a guy goes around beating pedophiles to death with a hammer.  It seemed pretty fucked up because you’re still watching people get violently murdered.  There’s a reason we don’t hang people in the town square anymore.

I’m not sure what I’m saying.  I had a weird night in Abilene.

Rejected!

I should back off 42561 but I can’t seem to stop myself.  I think I have poor impulse control.  I just never had anything to be impulsive about before.  I wanted to show her some of the stuff from Royale’s trunk.  I thought that would help her see things my way.  She wasn’t interested.   

That hurt.  To me it was a big deal.   I wouldn’t want most people to even know about Royale’s notes and writings.  I certainly wouldn’t share them.  I can understand it from her point of view though, to her it’s just a weird box of old junk.  She said that you don’t learn magic from books.

I found her abhorrence odd but later she halfway apologized and explained that her mother had warned her about “book mages”.  I was afire with curiosity but I didn’t want to push her on it.  All she said was that her family has a long-standing problem with a group of mages that she called Hermetics – people who learn magic from books.   

I told her about the books that I had found and the problems they caused.  She didn’t seem interested in hearing about that either.

I got to thinking that 42561 and Stella both learned magic from their mothers.  Obaluaiye said that he had been initiated into the mysteries by his uncle.  I was too self-absorbed to ever ask how Royale learned about magic.   

Royale said that some people are born with magical aptitude, so maybe it’s genetic?  It made me think about my parents for the first time in a long time.  I’ve always assumed that they were street people who couldn’t handle a kid and they tossed me in the trash.  But if they were magic, maybe that explains why they aren’t around. 

This shit is dangerous. If they got gunned down with magic, does that make me Batman?  Er, Batwoman?

I challenge Tom Cruise for the Last Samurai World Championship!

I was watching a video clip of a wrestling show which led me to one thing and another until I was reading about “The Path of Aloneness” or “The Way to Go Forth Alone” or “The Way of Walking Alone”.  Japanese must not translate to English well. 

A samurai guy wrote it after wandering around Japan most of his life killing dudes in duels.  He wasn’t a soldier. He went around finding other guys that wanted to fight and then killed them.  In duels.  Maybe 60 dudes.  He was renowned not only for being a great fighter but also for being a dick. 

His deal was as soon as you agreed to the fight, he felt the fight was on.  He did everything he could after that to piss off his opponent and throw them off their game.  The duels were all supposed to be about honor and respect, but this guy went another way – just win baby. 

In essence, he was a wrestling heel.  Except no babyface ever took him down.  Which is bad storytelling.  The only reason to build up a heel is so the face can beat them. 

The Alone Walking thing was 21 rules for how to be awesome at wandering around and fighting.  Since that’s kind of my life, let’s check them out.  Maybe I should do a Samurai gimmick.  That’s probably not cool.  Cultural appropriation.

1. Accept everything just the way it is.  Mixed feelings about this one.  Acceptance is good.  But some things you should try to change.

2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.  What other reason is there to seek pleasure?  Don’t get this one.

3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.  I like this one.  Be sure before you do something important.

4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.  Ooh, I like this one a lot.  Ego is bad, caring about others is good.  Nice one, guy who killed 60 other guys for laughs.

5. Be detached from desire your whole life long.  Um, maybe?  This is a Buddhist thing, which only kind of makes sense to me.  Wanting shit makes you sad, but if you desire nothing you get nothing.   

6. Do not regret what you have done.  I can get onboard with this.  You did what you did, learn to live with it.  RIP Stella.

7. Never be jealous.  Sure, makes sense.

8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.  Don’t be lonely?  It’s not so easy brother.

9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself or others.  Amen.  Stuff your complaints in a sack and get on with it.

10. Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love.  You almost had me, old dead murderer dude.  Not acting out of lust?  Great advice.  Not acting out of love?  Hard pass.  I believe in love.  People think that maybe he was gay, which was not cool in Japan then, and part of his self-denial ideal was because of that.  I wonder if it’s okay to be gay in Japan now.

11. In all things have no preferences.  Uh what?  I think this is another Buddhism thing.  I’m going to keep having preferences.

12. Be indifferent to where you live.  I kind of am, but I would like to live someplace comfortable and nice so I guess not.

13. Do not pursue the taste of good food.  Fuck you bro.  I love food.

14. Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need.  Okay, you’re winning me back.  I don’t have a lot of stuff and I think that’s good.  Most people have so much stuff.  It’s a cliché but the things you own end up owning you. 

15. Do not act following customary beliefs.  Ever?  You shouldn’t do something because that’s the way it’s always been done, but there are lots of times you absolutely should follow custom.

16. Do not collect weapons or practice with weapons beyond what is useful.  Easy enough for me.

17. Do not fear death.  As long as I live the life I’m given, I won’t be afraid to die.

18. Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age.  What?  Is he trying to say that old people shouldn’t hoard stuff, give young people a chance?  That makes sense.  If he’s just saying old people don’t need goods, that doesn’t make sense.  Old people need lots of goods.

19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help.  Super yes.  I have no religion, but this is great for those that do.  Believe in God and Jesus all you want, but realize that we’re all on our own.  The Lord isn’t going to fly down on a flaming sheep and fix everything.  You’re going to have to work for it.

20. You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honor.  What?  I don’t understand this one.  Maybe he’s saying that you should die before you give ground to an enemy?  Dunno.

21. Never stray from the way.  Ever?  Pass.  No rule is so awesome there shouldn’t be the possibility of an exception.

Well there you have it.  Since this guy died hundreds of years ago, I’m probably the best wandering Samurai person now.  I better get a sword.

Magical girl friendship squad

42561 and I got into it today.  I want her to change the way the thinks about magic.  Just because the bus was nothing mystical doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have stopped and looked into it.  I want her to know that there’s nothing shameful about magic.  That there’s nothing wrong with being born with a gift.  Leaning into it might be dangerous, but aren’t we supposed to be using whatever abilities we have to create the kind of world we want to live in?  If we want things to be better, we have to make things better. 

She told me angrily that I had no right to preach to her.  She said that I don’t know anything about magic.  Which is true.  It would be generous to say that I’ve been even half trained.  I said that’s why I want her to train me.  I asked her to think about what we accomplished in Needles.   

That was the wrong thing to say.  That made her shut down entirely.  She said that if I wanted to be a fucking magic private investigator and end up dead that was my business, but I shouldn’t try to drag her down with me.  She went on at length about how if anyone found out magic was real, we’d be fucked.   

I wanted to disagree with her, but a lady did try to stab me once because she read this blog and thought I was in league with the devil.  Things haven’t worked out for anyone else I’ve encountered that found out about magic.  But I asked her, if it’s so dangerous, why does she do it at all?   

If she was truly only concerned about staying safe and hidden, she wouldn’t do magic at all.  She would forget the entire thing.  It makes no sense to learn magic just so you can hide that you know magic.  She certainly wouldn’t have opened up to me about it even the little bit she has if the goal was to stay hidden.  I said that I felt like part of her wanted me to convince her.   

I expected her to say I didn’t know what I was talking about or stomp off, but she went the other way.  She said of course what I was selling was appealing to her – who doesn’t want to be a hero?  But that’s why it’s dangerous.  She said that becoming a victim yourself doesn’t help the people you want to help.   

Maybe that makes sense, but if we don’t do something, who will?  Who else is there?   

Speed 3 – Snakes on a Bus

42561 and I were outside of Plainview when I saw an empty bus by the side of the road.  It didn’t look like a Greyhound or other bus line but it wasn’t a school bus either.  Maybe it was a church bus or associated with a camp. 

If 42561 was driving she wouldn’t have slowed down, let alone stopped.  She lets me drive most of the time though, and I wasn’t going to pass that up.  I figured with my luck there was a cult nearby that had kidnapped all the bus passengers and was about to do a mass sacrifice.   A classic blood mage bus attack.

I don’t want anyone to be kidnapped by blood mages.  But.  There was a part of me that was excited seeing a spooky empty bus.  I’ve been feeling vaguely unsettled lately and the prospect of a mystery shook me out of my funk.  42561 was not happy about being “dragged into it” as she deemed it. 

I’m not sure what her issue is.  If there are people in trouble, why wouldn’t you help them if you could?  In the hotel last night, I watched that stupid Superman movie where he lets his dad die for no reason to try and understand him better.  It didn’t help.  Is there a Superwoman movie?  Maybe there’s a gender bias in Superman that’s messing up the lesson I’m trying to learn.

42561 wanted me to drop her off and then come back to check out the bus, but I bullied her into coming with me.  I did my finding spell to track down the bus driver.  We found him and everyone else from the bus a few miles away at Ma’s Café. 

The bus had broken down and they walked down to the café.  Nothing nefarious about it.  42561 gave me shit like she had told me it would be nothing, but that’s not what she said at all.  She didn’t care if it was something or nothing.  She didn’t want to get involved either way. 

Nice reminder that not everything that happens is a crazy magic conspiracy.  Sometimes shit just breaks down.

Why not SuperGIRL you traitor?

The sheer amount of information online with instructions on how to make friends or what to do if you have no friends is depressing in and of itself.  Are there really that many people out there that have no one?  I thought social media was supposed to be handling this?  Is it possible that somehow the superficial “single-serve friendship” of the internet is making people feel less connected and more isolated?  Nah, that’s crazy. 

42561 and I aren’t really gelling.  But she’s tolerating me.  Which is something?  It’s kind of like getting a cat from a shelter that turns out not to be very sociable.  You may want a snuggly cuddlebug but the best you’re going to get is aloof tolerance.  We’re both magic-using women wrestlers and we don’t seem to have anything in common.  How is that possible? 

What keeps striking me is that I feel that I’m on the other side of what it was like when people tried to befriend me.  It’s the universe is saying “how do you like it, Grace?”  I don’t like it, but it’s not the worst thing that’s ever happened to me.

Since there’s only so much time you can spend trying to force a friendship, I’ve continued with my journey of random online mental health stuff.  I found a “report card” you’re supposed to measure every day.   

Get at least 8 hours of sleep a night – I’ll rate myself good here

Stay hydrated and eat balanced meals – I’ll say okay here, my diet is kind of crap but I cheat with magic 

Exercise – No issues here 

Spend time regularly with people you enjoy – Needs work 

Build time into your day to rest and reflect – Since I only work a couple times a week for less than an hour, I feel like I have the opposite issue 

Have a purpose that gives your life meaning – WTF? 

This last one is a real kick in the good titty (right for me).  Just give your life meaning?  That is a huge deal, not a checkbox on a list.  I feel like having that on there could really depress people.  This happens a lot.  I think, hope maybe, that the people who create these things are well-intentioned but much of it really misses the point, boiling down to “are you sad?  stop being sad and be happy, idiot!”   

What’s weird is that my life does have a purpose.  I use my magic to save the world.  Somehow that doesn’t feel satisfying though.  Is there a comic book where Superman has a crisis and wonders what the point of saving the world is?  Maybe that’s what I need to read. 

OOC – Happy birthday

This blog is one year old. I don’t have much to say about that but it seems worth remarking on. I like writing this, I wish more people liked reading it.

When I started this blog at first it seemed like it was going to gain more traction than my other blog, but the first bug story really scared people off. Actually honestly what I think happened is wordpress deleted a bunch of bots.

I figured with the popularity of HEELZ on STARZ people would come flocking here wanting wrestling fiction but I’m still waiting for that HEELZ bump. I suppose the problem, if there is one, is that there’s too much wrestling for magic fans and too much magic for wrestling fans. It’s a classic conundrum.

This isn’t my first wrestling blog. I had several in college. Not sure they were blogs, but they were something. That was the late nineties when the internet really was a series of tubes so who even knows what things were. I’ve been a little short on inspiration for Grace lately so I wanted to go back and steal some of those ideas, but I think it’s all finally gone. They say nothing ever leaves the internet but it’s not quite true. I think I accessed one of those sites as recently as 2017, which is a pretty long life for angelfire or whatever it was.

Most of those stories were about lady wrestlers as well. Sometimes I wonder why I write female protagonists so often. I hope it’s not something gross. Some people REALLY don’t like that choice.

The other day someone was really laying into the Red Hot Chili Peppers and I thought “I guess they were kind of lame” but then I remembered that I really like the song Soul to Squeeze. So sorry, Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Where I go, I just don’t know
I got to, gotta, gotta take it slow
When I find my peace of mind
I’m gonna give ya some of my good time

Words as true today as they were when the movie Coneheads came out in 1993.

I used to not care about drinking room temperature beverages. Now I hate it. The world of my youth is gone. Things change. Life, you know?