As regular readers of this column know, the Scribe is a gainfully employed non-media member of the Great American workforce and damn proud of that fact. And that a decades worth of work in radio and print lie somewhere in the distant past. AND that this column provides NEWS and VIEWS on wrestling, food, travel, wine, and life, ALL things the Scribe has more than a passing relationship with. Grateful that emotions have been stirred by recent comments, slightly suprised at the threats both stated and implied (in, to be sure, an ancillary fashion), and hopeful that readership of honest commentary and observation continues to grow.
USA WOMEN, THEY LOVE GOLD…ONLY GOLD…THEY LOVE GOOOOOLD*…AND THEY WILL HURT YOU FOR IT
“Just the facts, Ma’am.”(1) Facts is:
The US Womens Freestyle wrestling team put on a SHOW in Nur Sultan, taking 3 Gold medals and finishing in 3rd place as a team. The amazing efforts included Adeline Gray (76kg) making history, becoming the first American wrestler to win 5 World Championships. Jacarra Winchester (55kg) struck first, though, taking out Nanami Irie 5-3. Winchester was robbed of a finals berth last year, but would not be denied in 2019. Some reliable second hand source somewhere said one of Winchesters frustrated foes went ALL catfight on her, scratching, hair pulling and biting. What, you didn’t know JW is straight outta Oakland? SON. I mean, DAUGHTER. You trippin. You hurtin. You LOST. Like everybody else. To Jacarra Winchester, 55KG World Champion. Then, it was Adelines turn. Gray, the Jordan Burroughs of American Womens wrestling, was deprived of the joy of (again) beating beauteous Bi-border rival and 2016 Olympic champ Erica Wiebe of Canada when the Northern Neighbor rival, an Instagram star, got bounced before the finals photo shoot. Que lastima, Erica, you’ll just have to take your whupping next time. Gray took a 4-2 finals win over Hiroe Minagawa Suzuki. The 4 year Olympic Cycle, ending in 2020 in Tokyo, presents Gray, now 28, with an incredibly difficult opportunity. A Gold Medal at the Games is the only honor not already in her trophy case. After a well deserved break, Gray will let the World know what’s coming from her next. Completing the precious metal troika, an unstoppable force of nature named Tamyra Mensah-Stock. The 68KG Gold Medalist humbled the rest of the world, winning all her matches with a combined score of 44-4. Not one contest was close. Possibly the only thing more amazing than Mensah-Stocks subjugation of her Earthly rivals are her post match fireworks, both verbal and physical. The Scribe is good with words. Can’t describe her. Can’t contextualize her. Can’t do it. She IS a BAD MAMA JAMMA, just as tough as she can be, she’s a BAD MAMA JAMA, and the whole Worlds frightened, feeling her FE-RO-SI-TEE. [Spell] check yourself, reader. Now, let’s hope that sometime soon she and Mr. Stock get around to blessing us with some amazing Olympic stars to be. Sir, just make sure your medical insurance is up to date. Have a feeling you’ll need it more than her.
USA MAKES A GLOBAL POINT
In point of fact, Americas medal-winning mujeres went UNDEFEATED in matches against….wait for it…JAPAN. That’s right, folks, Winchester, Mensah-Stock and Gray faced down the full force of the Rising Sun. Didn’t even need their shades. Forrest Molinari also wrestled for Bronze, and overall it was a great showing by The USA women. Again, ultimate thanks and kudos for jobs well done (and being done) all around to the TrackWrestling crew fronted by Kyle Klingman and Andy Hamilton, Flowrestlings bad boy duo of Willie Saylor and Daniel Lobdell, and USA Wrestlings twitter feed. Like being mat side in Nur Sultan without the time heist, the customs hassles, and, let’s face it, the expense!
RTC WISHES AND D1 DREAMS
More schedule excitement as Oklahoma State confirmed their participation in the Southern Scuffle, to be held Jan. 1st and 2nd in Chattanooga. The Pokes will be serious favorites for the team title, but know this, wrestling fans…. the Iowa St. Cyclones, Rutgers,(#Redteamupstream) and Lock Haven (#theRise) will put their 2 cents and then some in. Still head scratching as to why no ACC team will be in Chatt-town this time around. Que lastima, but mucho talent, both team wise and individually, will be on display. And in another “stack some talent on that talent for me, would you?” moment, former Oregon St. 3X NCAA Qualifier and 2019 US Open Bronze medalist Joey Palmer has landed at the Cyclone Regional Training Center. Joey joins former Illinois 2X National Champ Jesse Delgado to give the C-RTC some serious lightweight punch. Don’t feel too badly for the Illinois RTC though, even with losing an icon like Delgado. Earlier this year, Greco Roman World Team member Max Nowry and former Minnesota All American Nick Dardanes joined the Illinois RTC roster. In coaching moves, Cal Baptist, a school headed slowly and steadily into Div. 1 waters, continues their upgrade by hiring former Cal St. Bakersfield 2XNCAA Championships qualifier Matt Williams as an assistant coach. The ex-Roadrunner athletic/academic star posted 96 wins with an astonishing 31 pins in his career. George Mason University brought former Kent St. All-American Mike DePalma into their coaching fold, offsetting the loss of fiery Mason Beckman. Beckman sent out a heartfelt letter of regret and gratitude upon his family and personal needs calling him swiftly back to his home state of PA. Two good things here- a positive lateral/vertical move for the dynamic Depalma, and, maybe, just maybe a Beckman return to the airwaves on the PA Power Wrestling Podcast? SWEEEET. And, one more podcast note: “Women Wrestle 2” is up and running on the Open Mat.com. Hosted by Alexis Porter and Arian Carpio, it’s to be a weekly feature. Porter and Carpio put enough party attitude for half a season into the 1st broadcast, hope they continue the pace. (And tighten the production just a tat).
2014 EDMEADES Mendocino County Zinfandel
Perhaps it was the over chill on the first pouring. The expectations were perhaps a bit high for this 92 point rated vintage. Whatever the case may be, don’t. Buy the case, that is. A strong rebound on the second go round with a spicy chicken dish and 4 different cheeses still didn’t quite get the expected genie out of this bottle. Good, but not great. Rating: 2.5 glasses.
See you later this month!
*If you didn’t know this was the fabulous final line to “Goldfinger”, arguably the GREATEST James Bond theme song of all time, hope for you is dwindling. Sing it, Dame Shirley Bassey, you Movie Theme Song G.O.A.T.**, you!
(1) The catchphrase of one of the first/best TV law enforcement guys ever, Detective Joe Friday of “Dragnet.”
**OK, Adele,”Skyfall.” Feeling you.