October has been a roller coaster ride for me with beautiful highs, moments of frustration and absolute confusion, but Gooden's glass likes to be half full and October has been marked with a whacking great big tick! On a personal level I feel I have moved forward with my ambitions in MMA by getting together a podcast and consolidating relationships within the sport. Bigger still, the introduction of SAFE MMA is such positive progression for UK MMA and to be involved fills me with pride and purpose. I will be blogging about SAFE MMA after the launch on November 1st.
Just as an aside, as I write this I am being slightly put off by a middle aged lady sitting opposite me on the train that has rocked up and is currently using the table as a beauty salon. That's ok as it actually smells pretty good, but she has definitely over done it on the moisturiser and has been rubbing her wrinkly face since we left Newport...we are now in Bristol and she still looks like a clown. Whatsmore, the excess cream is being worked at so furiously that the back of my ipad is starting to resemble a plasterer's radio!
Anyways, so about my (very raw) podcast; its nearly cost me a PC and a door after repeatedly crashing and thus creating an inner rage that hasn't consumed me since Willy B clocked me in the back of the head with a rock hit by a hurling stick- upon reflection great tekkers, but you don't shoot your pals in the back ;o). After failed attempts to upload to soundcloud, youtube etc, I managed to get episode 1 uploaded via videopress on this here site. I have plans to educate myself in better ways of delivering this so thats its downloadable, so bear with me! I'd like to think my podcast is a little bit different to the others out there as it quite simply stitches together interviews that I would normally conduct with fighters, coaches, promoters, referees, managers etc. I hope it will give access to these people to help with honest insights into the true lives of these individuals. Thanks to all those that have lent their time to feature. I am now set for episode 4 with the first 3 covering Shock n Awe 12, Rosi Sexton's VADA experience and Cage Warriors 49.
Shock n Awe 12 then. I loved working with the whole crew at this show. From everything around the show and man love with Gareth Johnson, commentating with Ben Cartlidge, the fighters, Addicted MMA, Ricky Wright, Little Red, David Swann, the guys at Boom Boom productions and of course Brian Adams- that straight talking big hunk of a man! Consistent with my misdemeanour trends I arrived at Portsmouth and realised I had no belt for my trousers. This might not seem too terrible to most, but I have a ridiculous ape-like structure with short legs, massive arse and no waist. I therefore end up buying 36 inch trousers that require a handful of material to be lost around the waist. My successful Paul Chek/ wholefoods diet has accentuated this and I could be seen mostly walking around the venue like a yoot wearing his strides around his arse or generally holding up my trousers with a hand constantly in my pocket which always arouses suspicions when you are in the company of beautiful rings girls!! The biggest problem was the worry of being mid flow of a post fight interview, celebrating with a fighter fresh from a hard fought victory only for me take a breath between questions and causing a trouser slippage to reveal my milky white pins to a sell out crowd! Thankfully my worst fears were never realised and David Swanny Swann came to the rescue after the show by lending me a spare belt. Now thats an organised man right there- cheers buddy!
Highlights of the show were being cageside to commentate Luke Dalmedo's fight. I've trained with Luke since he was 15 and its great to see him realise his talent in cage competition. Well done bro! Also seeing Jack Mason and Mike Ling turn a corner in their careers was great particularly after spectating their fights from close quarters at Cage Warriors and obviously being a big fan of theirs. I'd also like to shout out Sam Ford and Jack Currell, 2 young semi pro fights who have bright futures ahead. It was a great contest!
Another memorable moment was being heckled as I entered the cage to interview UFC fighter Phil Harris and TUF contestant Brad Scott. As I stepped onto the Shock N Awe apron, wearing my light grey shoes with contrasting brown soles, tweed style jacket, bow tie and slightly fierce quiff I'm happy to say I was greeted by what I can only assume is a fan by a loud cry of 'GAY'. Brilliant! It put a bigger skip in my step as I pranced to my position in front of the camera.
Onwards to Cage Warriors. Another podcast and a speed typing exercise explaining and defending SAFE MMA. The Welsh MMA fans seemed really excited to be hosting CW which is such a great feeling for anyone associated with the promotion. We are all so committed to doing the very best job that we can for the good of the show and positive reaction like that is great for the team. St Davids Hall is a great venue right in the heart of the shopping district in Cardiff. The layout is also really good for MMA and the noise in the hall was excellent when the Welsh fighters appeared to start their ring walk. In all, it wasn't the best night in terms of results for the Welsh contingent and perhaps a little bit of the gloss was taken off of Tim Newman's win with the arguments over the tap. There was much debate over the tap and its terrible for all concerned when a situation like this arises. Lots of angles have been examined from different cameras and Marc Goddard got it right. I have so much respect and admiration for Greg Loughran and I eagerly await his return. Congrats to Tim, I know that this win will mean so much to him.
I'll probably get told off for mentioning this, but its pretty damn obvious if you listen to the commentary...I have no desire to be an MMA judge. I'm not actually in the greatest position to analyse a fight around the MMA scoring system. I personally have to consider certain production items, read notes, listen to my producer and work commentary with my partner. Scoring at the same time is just too difficult. You of course get a flavour from the fight, but that isn't how the 10 point must system works.
On a lighter note and a bit of gossip. I was amused to be told that a flamboyant member of the Cage Warriors crew had a suspicious incident with a glitter bath bomb that caused their Davina McCalls to sparkle like a bit of camp disco furniture. It is not, however, the same team member that enlisted the help of Brooke and her make up. Just sayin! Oh and a big shout out to the 30 or so handsome bow tie wearing fellas that were staying at the same hotel. Its a movement y'know!? Respect ;o)!
The morning after the show there was an alarming complaint surrounding the suspicion of performance enhancing drugs. The complaint was lodged by the Cardiff Central pigeons about their winged counter parts, the sea gulls. The pigeons can get near to the rich picking of the platform food. In fact, even I had politely ask Mr C Gull if i could squeeze past at the top of the platform stairs. WTF are those guys on? I know one thing, Halloween is fricking scary in Cardiff with those raptors on the loose trick or treating!
That's October done. I'm keen to see what happens to the UK and European rankings next week. Thanks for reading.
Oh and for those worried about the lady opposite me on the train, she managed to lose the cream in a couple of her chins and did a much better job with the lippy. Beautiful.