I answered an add on craigslist a few years ago to be a Driver PA for an Ultimate Fighting Championship in Treton, NJ.
I knew this would require lots of driving, which I’m good at. But I didn’t realize I would be driving 14-18 hours a day. Luckily, I brought a full bottle of ritilin. Otherwise this narcoleptic and all the fighters would have been toast.
My job was to drive the fighters and their coaches wherever they needed to go. We spent most our time in New Jersey, which, if you aren’t familiar with NJ, is the the strangest state in the lower 48’s.
(This, for instance, is the most hip place to be on a Friday night. Ice cream parlor next to Cemetary. People mostly lean on that fence next to the gravestones to hang.
For the 3 days leading up to the fight, I made countless trips to these two places:
a 24 hour gym
This was my first out of town gig that wasn’t low budget. I got my very own room at the Hyatt!
Keep in mind I spent 5 years living in my truck and the previous year in NYC sleeping in a cubile in an office with 12 other people
I was soooo excited!
I spent the last day before the fight driving these guys to the doctor to get their final physical.
The waiting room was small. The fighters were restless. The wait took forever.
The fighters tried their best to avoid speaking to each other, lest they become fond of the person they’re supposed to kick the ass of.
ALL of this guy’s food is JUST for the morning and afternoon. The fighters had been starving for days to make weight and now it was time to get their gorge on.
They got a little too comforable in the waiting room and made a mess. (There were two female ultimate fighters by the way!)
Some of them were too big for the chairs.
I was terrified of this guy when I first met him, but he ended up being a giant teddy bear.
I wandered around the hospital to kill time. This sink made me laugh. Is it a self proclaimed “clean sink” or is the hospital making a command?
While I was jacked up on Ritilin trying not to kill the boxers, they rested.
Then Fight Night arrived.
This is the announcer. He claimed to be famous. I wouldn’t know.
I just noticed his hand is a little too close to my boob.
The fight was pretty boring, mostly because I hate watching fights.
The New Jersey crowd proved to be incredibly racist. When an Asian American fighter named Matt Lee went up against a South African fighter named Trevor something, the crowd started yelling racial slurs and chanting “USA, USA, USA.” They mistakenly thought Trveor (the foreigner) was Rocky, and Matt (the Asian American) represented Communist China or something messed up like that.
The got what they wanted. Trevor won and America lost.
I thought a good way to flirt with a hot fighter is to let him hit me.
Any attention is better than no attention, right? HURTS SO GOOD!
Then he took it too far and I whooped his ass.
It ended up being a long night. I took one fighter to the emergency room.
The last day, I took about 10 fighters to the airport. There’s nothing like showing up at an airport with a van full of huge dudes with black eyes and crutches. Needess to say, we got a lot of looks.
My Japanese fighter friends went back to Japan having gotten their asses beaten. They were sad, but I cheered them up when I insisted we take pictures.
This was to be the first of many craigslist adventures I have had since moving to NYC. To see some others, click
Or, click on one to the right of this story under “blogroll”