Ted DiBiase Jr
I really had never given Ted DiBiase Jr, 27, 6'2", 210#, a second look until the recent issue of WWE Magazine with its "26 Collectible Covers!" caught my eye at the local Kroger supermarket. He had only recently entered my radar, since I seldom watch wrestling on regular television and never the WWE (my thought on the WWE-brand weekly series, as I have expressed it a few times already, is that they would be all right if they featured more than two and a half minutes of wrestling per half hour).
A month ago I would not have imagined that I would pick the DiBiase cover to run through the express-lane scanner, given the luxury of 26 choices. My tastes in the WWE run more towards Morrison, Miz, Jericho, Punk, Cena, Orton, or even DiBiase's tag-team partner Rhodes. But maybe I simply had not seen the right photo yet. Something about this shot caught my eye, and I've wondered what it is on several occasions since I purchased the magazine on impulse a few weeks back.
DiBiase looks a bit like a smalltown sheriff's deputy with oafish fleshiness in excess. He has the drowsy insolence of inherited celebrity, perfect for a heel and hard to imitate, by which I don't mean to imply that he could not have succeeded without a famous father preceding him in the business, but, truth be told, it's hard to imagine that having the "Million Dollar Man" for a father didn't help.
Part of the attraction is, I suspect, that he looks a little like one of several preacher's sons I knew back in my fundamentalist youth, clean-cut bad boys who, with sufficient provocation, would strip off shirts and pants to wrestle me in the dorm rooms and hallways of the string of Christian colleges I attended back in the 1970s, until I finally took a degree after six and a half years as an undergraduate. Most of these guys are preachers at their own bible-centered churches now, with the requisite piano-playing wives and sexy, conflicted offspring alongside them.
DiBiase also has the odd, bulky muscularity that often fascinates me in regular un-GQ men--not the V-shaped torso of competition bodybuilding, more like its soft-serve version, slumping, fluid, humped, and smooth, the Michelin man on holiday. It's the sort of body a working man might build--a high-rise construction worker, oil rigger, or high-school coach--mildly objectionable at first glance, but whose imperfection only amplifies its peculiar sexiness.
I could go on ... about the Jean-Claude Van Damme nips and pageboy-gone-butch haircut ... but I've said enough already. Allure--any kind of allure, much more sexual allure--is hard to pin down. Reportedly it's the accumulation of anatomical and chemical imprints from infancy to the present. I don't know. My "type" has never been entirely consistent. It has included Greco-Roman gods, Irish roughnecks, Nubian wrestlers, stringy crackers, jungle boys, hairy-chested metalheads, rubber fetishists, emo naifs, imps, tattooed aristocrats, and blank-eyed Nazis. In every case, the common denominator has been they look like somebody who would be fun to fight. Hence ... obviously ... this blog.