How to Keep It Going Forever













Alex Costa vs Ryan Sparks, Catalog 7 - The Muscle Boys Get Dirty! (MuscleBoy)

I have a theory that making wrestling a routine part of one's romantic relationship is key to keeping the bond healthy and stimulating. It works off a lot of the competitiveness that male couples and regular bros are prone to. It keeps petty irritations from taking hold and turning into major problems that  split friends and couples apart. Its physical intimacy cultivates trust and stimulates the libido - and the wrestling gets better with repetition. For guys, anyway, it beats "talking things through" for problem solving. Or so I think, not that I'm a relationship expert or anything. 

MuscleBoy's online description rightly calls attention to a small gesture near the end of this match. At this point, Alex and Ryan have exhausted each other through a rough round of attacks on the pecs and abs, reinforced with the occasional full nelson, bear hug, and so on. Spent of energy, they lie spread-eagle at an angle, their heads almost meeting at the apex. The small gesture entails a casual fist bump, as if to say, "Good fight, man." Then Alex and Ryan roll in to lock lips, each with a hand on the other guy's ass. It's a confirmation of my sense of what MBW is about - the romance of a good hard tussle.

The name Sparks  has to be ironic. I continue to be hypnotized by Sparks's ultra-low-key performance style. He's sort of the Ryan Gosling of underground wrestling. When Sparks attempts a "sell," it usually reads as an anomalous facial tic. His default mode is numbed deadpan - in fact, deadpan in slow motion. But he doesn't lack charisma. It's just a charisma that's hard for me to peg. His is a sort of animal magnetism completely unrelated to the expression of human emotion - which makes it almost impossible for me to take my eyes off of him.

Costa, conversely, seems energized even in repose. The five o'clock shadow, hairy forearms, hairy chest, and sinewy physique are engaging, warm, Mediterranean, and they make him appear accessible and engaged. In the closing gesture just mentioned, it's Alex who bothers to turn his head and look at Sparks. It's a natural, human attempt to connect. Sparks is the cordoned-off object of art or crime scene. Costa appears (at least) to be the kind of guy who greets friends with a hug and relaxes with his arm around the shoulders of whoever is sitting next to him.

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