Ed. note – Jessica ‘Lobster Mobster’ Hudnall’s SparkNotes review of Tank Abbott’s literary debut, Befor There Were Rules, A Trilogy By #1 MMA Cagefighting Legend David “Tank” Abbott, Book One, Bar Brawler, A Novel, continues. Here’s what you should’ve read already:
In today’s installment, featuring chapters 17-19: mud wrestling. Also, the exciting world of court appeals! Enjoy.
Chapter Seventeen – Mud, Guts and Beer:
Walter’s pretty pissed about getting 6 months for smashing a dude’s face into a jelly, so he starts drinking the second he gets home (Though I’m sure he would be drinking if he was found not guilty on all charges). He wants some company the more he gets buzzed, so Walter calls up Gonzo, and they start driving around, replenishing their beers along the way. They end up at a seedy bar called Sugar’s, when they spot Big Cal. Big Cal’s another friend, so Walter and Gonzo head over to play some pool with him.
Cal’s opponent isn’t too happy about getting shut out, so of course Walter starts getting hot under the collar. Cal and Gonzo manage to keep things civil, and the three play a few games of pool while getting completely hammered. They eventually abandon the game to chat at a table. The conversation moves to wrestling, as Cal wrestled in high school, Walt and Gonzo were on the same junior college team, and Gonzo is an All-American (American). Talking about wrestling leads to Cal and Gonzo wanting to just wrestle each other, so they head outside to a muddy, gravel-filled back lot and get ready to grapple.
Despite having 50 pounds and an incredible amount of experience on him, Gonzo is too drunk to take down Cal. Cal manages to throw Gonzo to the mud a couple times, and Gonzo decides he’s too drunk to keep wrestling. Walt’s game, though, and he gets three quick takedowns on Cal (Of course he’s the best at it!). Everyone’s got the wrestling out of their systems, so they all head to their separate homes to pass out (But only Walter’s lucky enough to pass out snuggling with Hitler-Dawg).
Walter gets up, goes for a quick boxing session, then it’s to the liquor store to re-stock his booze rations. He chats with some people about how badly he got screwed over by the justice system (More like IN-justice system, am I right?), then heads home to drink beer and hang out with Adolf. The phone rings, and it’s Trike, the guy that hired Walt at the liquor store. Trike heads over to pick up Walt, and they go for a drive, where Trike says he’s leaving in a month to take a trip to Germany. Then Walter and Trike hatch a plan for Trike to beat up Jerome La Mentiroso while Walt’s doing his six month stretch.
• Did Walter fight? No, just mud wrestled with Big Cal
Key lines: “A guy named Big Cal is at one of the smoky pool tables, swinging his cue stick around like he’s the conductor of an orchestra for dirtbag bar idiots.”
Yet you chose to patronize this establishment, Walter, so what does that say about you?
“After the day I’ve had I will stomp anyone who disrespects me flatter than a pancake.”
That’s what got you six months, you doofus! I hate you so much, Walter Foxx.
“Gonzo is bent over with both hands on his knees, a technique used in wrestling when you need to get air.”
Hey, I know a wrestling technique!
“I have a full-throttle buzz going and am speaking Drunkenese, trying to get the bartender to understand me.”
The main problem is that most of Drunkense is just racial slurs.
“He loses his base and I pick him up on my shoulder and pile-drive him headfirst into the rocks.”
Reminder that this is a good friend of Walter’s, and also that Walter is an asshole.
“Hit him 180 times: one shot for each day that his lies put me behind bars.”
Holy shit, Walter is even more of a psychopath than I had ever considered.
Chapter Eighteen – Delaying Destiny:
Walter wakes up hungover, but he’s got garage doors to ineffectually sell, so after a quick shower, he’s on the job. After getting one sale from three bids, Walt’s off to the boxing gym, and then the wrestling room. He’s down to 190 (I’m pretty sure he was hovering around 300 during his trial, which was only a few weeks ago), but he throws around a heavyweight with no problem.
Walt heads back home (Under the speed limit, because he’s tired of Johnny Law harassing him), plays with Adolf, and starts drinking. Walt heads to the garage to play foosball by himself, then takes Adolf and a fresh siren with him for a cruise in his truck (Drunk driving is fine, but hey, better watch your speed?). The drive is short, and Walter ends up back at his house to watch Carson and Letterman before heading to bed with Adolf.
Walter wakes up and makes a trip to the boxing gym. Someone finally wants to spar with him, and it’s a huge guy that claims to have been an undefeated monster in the Navy. Of course, Walter’s the only TRUE WARRIOR in the gym, and the Navy man is a big-talking poser that can’t fight and gets roughed up by Walt. Walter finishes his workout, heads home, and harnesses up Adolf for a run through the neighborhood (Walt’s on his skateboard again). Walt leads Adolf to his parents’ house so Adolf can have a romp with his girlfriend, Ginger, a wiener dog. Walt talks with his mom about his impending jail time, and since she works for the county employee retirement system, she’ll put in a good word for him with the main supervisors at the prison.
Walt heads home and gets a phone call from ace attorney, John Wittless. John doesn’t like the outcome of the trial, since Walter should have either been guilty of both charges, or innocent of both. Wittless says he’ll appeal it for an extra $1000, and as long as the appeal is ongoing, Walter won’t have to go to jail. Figuring that he might as well fight things to the bitter end, Walt agrees and then calls Trike to call off the scheduled beatdown of La Mentiroso.
With the threat of jail no longer looming, Walt feels more at ease and drinks in celebration. He wakes up the next morning, goes for more boxing, and then heads out to sell garage doors in the afternoon. He heads home to pick up Adolf, and they go on their nightly drive. Walt heads to his old job, Sea Lion Beach Liquor, where he picks up a fresh twelve pack and Adolf gets a piece of beef jerky. Walt heads back out, and drives around the beach for a while before heading home. Walt fills in his roommates, Skip and Jorge about the appeal since he barely sees them, and then it’s off to bed.
The next day Walter goes for more boxing and weight training, anything to keep him out of trouble. He considers opening his own garage door business for about a minute before dismissing it entirely. Walt then basically resigns himself to going headlong into professional boxing, shady promoters be damned.
• Did Walter fight? Nope.
Key lines: “I look at him like a great white shark eyeing a seal: It’s time for dinner but this is just lunch so I won’t eat you now, you fat fish.”
Seals ain’t fish, Walt.
“The foil on the windows will keep the sun out of my eyes in the morning, but it can’t keep out the thoughts of jail from going inside my head and keeping me awake.”
That is called your conscience, and deep down, it knows you are an irredeemable pile of poops, Walter Foxx.
“His fighter is a big white guy, close to 300 pounds, with the average boxer’s intelligence of negative stupid.”
Wouldn’t negative stupid mean smart? At least Walter’s going to hit a white guy this time!
“My head is on a swivel as I look at all the faces on the street, hoping to see just one scumbag that’s on my list.”
Yes, because the best course of action while waiting for your lawyer to appeal your assault charge is to beat up someone.
“I haven’t gone out lately looking for asshats who are begging for a beating and feel a need for some excitement.”
Walter, you were driving around yesterday looking for people on your “list of guys what deserve a punchering, courtesy of me, Walter ‘Radimus Maximus’ Foxx”.
Chapter Nineteen – The Dark Road Calls:
It’s now a year since his trial date, and Walt’s appeal is still ongoing. He’s been stuck in a rut of selling garage doors, boxing training, and weight lifting. Luckily, his friend Rod calls him up, and instead of turning him down, Walt agrees to hang out. Hot Rod and Poppa Chulo head over and the three decide to go to a new club, the Golden Bear. Walter tells a story of going to an old place called the Golden Bear to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers that dissolved into a riot.
Fred, Walter’s garage door boss, a guy named Fee, and Walt were in the front row when Fred, hopped up on delicious cocaine, decided to flip off Flea. The lead singer of the warm-up band was on stage at the time and leapt down to confront Fred, who then sucker-punched the guy. The rest of the RHCP joined the fracas, as did bouncers and cops, but not before Walter got in his licks against the band.
Hot Rod and Poppa Chulo inform Walt that the Golden Bear he’s talking about burned down, and there’s a newly built one that’s not as horrible. The head to the new Golden Bear and all three immediately go for their drink of choice: Walter on Stoli and cranberry, Hot Rod on whiskey, and Poppa Chulo on beer. Walt spots Penny, a big guy from the boxing gym who tried to knock out Walt on his first day of sparring. Penny couldn’t, because according to Walt, he “hit like a girl”. Since Walter doesn’t want to ruin his appeal, he nudges Poppa Chulo into the fight, who eagerly accepts.
Walter heads over to Penny and his crew and tells them that Poppa Chulo has been angling for a fight with Penny. Not wanting to look weak in front of his friends, Penny accepts, and everyone heads outside. On the way out the door, Poppa Chulo tells Walter that he’s way too drunk to fight. Walt informs Penny that Poppa Chulo is in no condition to fight, and it looks like things will calm down, until a drunk friend of Penny’s points out that Walter just wanted to see and brawl and tried to instigate everything. Walt gets mad, but manages to restrain himself and head back to Hot Rod’s car. Walter has second thoughts, though, and drags Poppa Chulo back to the entrance of the Golden Bear, but Penny and his friends are long gone.
Walt gets Hot Rod to drive around the block, looking for Penny and the drunk, but there’s no sign of them. Everyone gets dropped off at their own homes, and Walt passes out. Walter wakes up, sells some doors, and heads to the boxing gym. Penny and his friends aren’t there so Walter takes out his frustrations on a heavy bag. Walt keeps up this pattern for some time, until one day in April he arrives home to find a letter from the County of Orange addressed to him. Thinking it means his appeal is over, Walter eagerly rips it open and finds out his appeal has been denied (Hahaha!) and his new sentencing date is in two weeks.
• Did Walter fight? No, he just tried to start one.
Key lines: “I’ve gone way past watching my P’s and Q’s for many long months and am now into my R’s and S’s.”
Since P’s and Q’s refers to Pints and Quarts, I guess Walt is now minding his Rollos and Skittles?
“Once Poppa Chulo started kicking ass I would have walked into the circle of morons and beat them like little children; but it isn’t going to happen now.”
I honestly wouldn’t put it past Walter Foxx to punch a child. Wait, maybe that’s it, maybe Walter Foxx is the shoot Chuck Taylor!
“Like the rest of the idiots in this modern world he thinks he can talk shit to anyone he wants and nothing will happen.”
Walter Foxx pines for the days when a man would insult your honor and you could just slap him with a lace glove and then someone would end up gut-shot.
“Too bad for me they weren’t at the wrong place at my right time.”
Then their time would be up, my time is now. Also, rapadoo.
“I’m a warrior without a battle and when the fog fades from the mirror of my life I still have to look into it.”
I am getting that phrase tattooed on my neck, backwards, so I can read it in the mirror of my bathroom.
“Someday I’ll transform into a sad old guy with a weathered, puffy face, flat nose, and broken dreams.”
Boy do you ever!