« assorted issues | Main | a new 'nelly' sports bar in tha 'hood »

September 17, 2006

beatings

We won both our matches yesterday, and although I was happy to play a full 80-minute match - it was on opposing team's side. Because they were short on players, I played a position that I normally don't do called 'flanker', and had to do some lineouts. Since I hadn't done many, on the way down from being lifted into the air I neglected to bend my knees upon landing to absorb the shock of impact, and jarred something in my back. It's the same place I always throw it out, and although it's not a full muscle spasm, it's certainly sore today. I hope to get some good crack from the doctor tomorrow. Then in our 2nd match I played a half in a position I had never played before called 'flyhalf' which I did pretty well because the position requires that I be bossy. Anyhow, the formerly 'evil' team has been upgraded to 'OK' in my book, as they were nice to play with, didn't hurt that we beat both teams as well.

The social afterwards was fun but I had to leave when the fun started, as apparently someone puked and I didn't get to see it. I went home to enter my usual post-match rugby-induced coma and rest up for Blowoff. I would not have woken up if someone hadn't called at 9pm, I was so pooped.

Blowoff was a hoot and the usual suspects were out and about and I danced with many woofers. With the closings of several bars in town the venue is attracting some new and different refugee crowds, not all of whom were civil to each other. It's been almost 15 years since I've seen public displays of domestic violence among same-sex couples, and last night I saw two. Near the front door a tall guy was kneeing his partner in the crotch multiple times with a look of pure hatred on his face. His partner barely resisted, but then was able to break loose to go outside. The aggressive one followed him out and continued to wail on him. A doorman went outside to break it up. Not 10 minutes later on the dance floor near the DJ booth, I saw another guy go for someone else. His female friend was trying to break it up, and they all dispersed.

The images from both instances kinda troubled me and put me in a weird headspace for the evening and through today. Getting hit by a guy during a rugby match is one thing, as we shake hands and have a beer afterwards. But domestic violence is another thing...the look on these guy's faces was disturbing. I guess I burn my aggression on the rugby pitch, and save my lovin' for another man, and have a hard time conceiving that you could do that to someone you purport to love. Or that the guy on the receiving end of the beatings could stick around to take it. A person who beats you or abuses you in any way is never worth being with, and the need to be in a relationship is never greater than allowing this abuse.

Posted by jimbo at September 17, 2006 2:23 PM

Comments

I'm glad that I missed those two incidents at Blowoff that you witnessed. Not pretty. I did note that the overall air of the event had a much different feel to it than those in the past. Bars/events closing - refugee crowds - factors for sure. Whether this is a good thing or not only the future will tell.

Posted by: Shawn at September 18, 2006 10:32 AM

I saw something disturbing myself. I was near the rear of the main area, and some guy forcibly grabbed another guy by the arm or elbow or something, and dragged him off towards the restrooms. I wasn't the only one who say this, other guys around me turned to see what was going on. I walked over a bit to see what was going on, and the two were standing back by the restrooms having an argument. Didn't see any blows, but I got a bad vibe. I've only been to Blow-Off once before, last summer when it was downstairs, so I can't quite compare it to past ones.

I got there around 11:30 and overheard one guy standing in line near me say, "Is this the Eagle or the 9:30 Club?". I know he was kidding around, but it was a pretty good observation. Lots of guys in black/dark t-shirts or tank tops and that "look" I haven't found words for yet.

Posted by: Brendan at September 18, 2006 11:35 AM

I wonder if we saw the same people...was the beater a tall caucasian, and the abusee a shorter Indian/Pakistani-looking guy?

Posted by: jimbo at September 18, 2006 11:51 AM

I was wondering about your head space comment; didn't think I was fully responsible for that. I was fortunate enough I suppose, to miss that altercation. It calls into question how much we are each responsible for intervening.

Yet as awful as it is to see, it's better in public than hidden in private. Sometimes that helps someone realize just how messed up things are.

Posted by: copperred at September 18, 2006 2:12 PM

for many years I was a domestic violence counselor and I ran a group for victims of same-sex partner abuse. adn while 'burning aggression' does have a role in partner abuse it is much more than that. violent partners are, in fact, managing their anger. they feel powerless out in the world and that makes them angry and they channel that anger into controling their intimate partners. ultimately it is more about feeling inferior than about feeling aggressive.

I might need to repost an article I wrote for a regional gay magazine on my blog in the near future. some sort of public service announcement?

Posted by: windreader at September 18, 2006 3:11 PM

Post a comment




Remember Me?