The first thing we hear is light guitar strumming, and the song “Never Been to Spain” by Three Dog Night plays over a small Google Nest speaker sitting on an end table.
In the middle of the room, a heavy bag is hanging from the ceiling, and an uncharacteristically serious Scott Hunter is bobbing and weaving, throwing jabs and hooks into the padded sides, leaving indentations as he does so. He has a bandana wrapped around his head and a white tank top, which makes him look ridiculous. All that’s missing is a gold chain.
Wait, okay, he just had to turn a bit. He’s also wearing a gold chain.
By the end table, on a small sofa, is Craig Massey, leaning back and looking on.
Hunter keeps an intense frown on his face as he jump-steps back and forth around the bag, snarling as he speaks.
“Carlos Ruiz!! Take notice my friend, for I have dressed in the common style of a Spanish street thug, which is not at all a stereotype, and I have learned some Spanish phrases as a preamble to our match this week, a match which will be the beginning of my epic tear through the Classic Wrestling Roster. Ahem….
Eres un bufón. Eres viscoso como el suelo de un burdel. Hueles a culo de Ricardo Montalbán. Eres como un torero vestido de rosa, pero sin la masculinidad. Sonríes como un idiota, usas gafas de sol estúpidas y tienes la tez de un caballo enfermo moteado.
Eres una caricatura andante. Buen intento, pero he visto guerras con menos muletas que tú.
Los toros de Pamplona no te persiguen. Levantan sus cuartos traseros y hacen caca sobre ti.
Tú eres feo. Una vez visito el Gran Cañón y gritó “Te amo” y el eco volvió “Seamos amigos”.
Eres estupido. Crees que la leche de soja significa “yo soy leche” en Español, y una vez peleaste con un lince por un poco de regaliz. Eres una vergüenza. ¿Cómo duermes en tu coche por la noche?
Las cajas de cartón en las calles de madrid te extrañan. Es tiempo de ir a casa.
Además, espero que mueras.”
Hunter stops what he’s doing, breathing heavily from the workout, turning to face the camera. Sweat falls, and he starts to untie the laces of the glove on his right hand with his teeth, then uses the free hand to remove the left-hand glove.
“Now some of you may be thinking, ‘Scott, I don’t speak or understand Spanish. Although you are quite handsome, your words are gibberish to my ears.’ Well, it’s okay, I understand and I’m happy to give you all a Spanish-to-English translation.
Simply put, I was telling my fine opponent this week Carlos Ruiz that I’m a big fan. I complimented his charming accent and olive complexion and remarked how much I enjoy Spanish traditions such as the running of the bulls and flamenco dancing. I wished him a spirited, sportsmanlike contest this week, then suggested we go out afterward for some empanadas, the official food of Spanish friendship. This, I said, would solidify our bond. Then, I closed with a Spanish poem to delight his heart. I’m pretty sure it will work.”
Scott pauses, looking over to Craig Massey for approval, and nods, satisfied.
“Better. But, you realize that Carlos Ruiz speaks Spanish don’t you?”
Hunter shakes his head.
“That’s an act. I heard he’s actually from Pittsburgh.”
Massey shakes his head right back.
“He’s definitely not from Pittsburgh. And nothing you said in Spanish was like what you said in English. I know Spanish too.”
Hunter, taken aback, cringes.
Massey rolls his eyes.
“I spent time in Mexico during my career, you know.”
Hunter waves a hand dismissively.
“That’s Mexican. This was SPANISH. It’s two different things.”
“Not as different as you think, and also, Mexican is not a language.”
Hunter holds up a finger and wags it.
“Don’t try to confuse me, old man. This week is the first week of the serious me, the real me, and Carlos Ruiz will feel the full weight of my wrath. Vaya con dios, Carlos.”
Hunter swings at the heavy bag as hard as he can, wincing because his gloves are off. Cursing himself under his breath, he walks away.