A documentation of the aggressive arts. Written by Sawyer Paul.

The World Is Not Enough: A Chikara Road Diary

I stayed in the ocean for hours that day, until the tide was almost fully in, and the waves carried me past the sandbar and into the shoal. I ate Thai takeout from a restaurant housed in a fancied-up trailer, and fell asleep with a half-finished glass of PBR on the nightstand and Chopped on the dinky motel television. It’s been a long time since I’ve slept that well.

If you’re not already in love with Danielle’s writing, this’ll put a fine end to that.

The Mouth of the WWE

Two great things stuck out of Shoemaker’s newest article. The first was how he structured his critique of Heyman’s monologue from Monday. Through footnotes, he was able to commentate without superimposing himself on the text. This is where pop-out footnotes on a website would have given it layout perfection.

The second was the line that summed up the entire article.

A paragraph from Heyman is better than a match from most wrestlers.

No question.

Dean Ambrose's advice

How is Stephanie McMahon? Has anyone heard from Stephanie McMahon? She’s in jail tonight. Stephanie! I have a message for you. I hope you can hear me. I’m gonna try to get a hold of you tonight and get some phone numbers, some guys who have gotten me out of some similar situations. Their names are sneaky Pete and Fat Tony The Good Guy. They’re…good at what they do guys, and they’ve helped me out.

See exhibit A on why WWE.com exclusive interviews are 1000% better than the ones they actually air on Raw.

Summerslam 2014 “grindhouse” promo video

Played originally during Sunday’s Battleground PPV, the Summerslam 2014 promo video exhibits a certain grindhouse feel. I originally tweeted that 2013 had it as well, but then I looked up last year’s video and found something altogether not grindhouse. The video package that opened Summerlam 2013 was absolutely grindhouse-styled, but for some reason I remember them doing videos leading up to the event using the motif. I can’t find any, however, so obviously I’m nuts.

Either there’s some laziness on the part of WWE’s production team (I’ve seen very little evidence of this in history) or they’re deciding to coat this show’s show with the same aesthetic. Cool either way.

This malpracticing Doctor of Thuganomics is in for the beating of a lifetime.

Paul Heyman

Are we discrediting the entire school of thuganomics now, or just Cena’s upkeep on his licenses?

Ziggler def. Miz

Stealing the show? Check. And Dolph Ziggler stole the new Intercontinental Champion’s thunder to boot as well, knocking off The Miz in some well-deserved retribution after the underhanded Battle Royal elimination of The Showoff that returned the vaunted title to Miz’s clutches.

It’s been a running joke for a long time, but I think we can finally call it: being the Intercontinental Champion guarantees you will never win a non-title match.

I think I missed doing this

There’s a giant four-month hole here that won’t get fixed. A whack of links are broken, the podcast is on hiatus/hibernating, and a great deal of IO’s 4-year history is missing. Still, Tumblr feels like home like nowhere else.

International Object Podcast 106: Joseph Parking

Zach Domer (@puregristle) joins Rich Thomas and Sawyer Paul to discuss the WWE Network and a ton of other topics. I’ll update this as I have time today, but wanted to put the episode up so people could hear it as soon as possible.

International Object (IO) is a blog about theatre, combat, and politics. International relations, human rights, choreography, and steel chairs to the head.

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Essential Crimea Reader: 7 Must Read Stories

Om Malik:

Last night, John Lilly, partner at Greylock and formerly chief executive at Mozilla tweeted and asked for recommended links about Crimea-Ukraine-Russia crisis that is unfolding in Eastern Europe. Instead of recommending the usual news bits-and-bobs, I shared some with him that give more context to the situation. Here is a list of seven I have found in past few days that I think are worth your time. 

Bookmarked all of these for the next few days’ worth of reading. You might want to do the same. 



David Foster Wallace and the Nature of Fact

Never comfortable in his role as a reporter, Wallace printed a preface to the Roche questions: “I’m not a journalist—I’m more like a novelist with a tennis background.” Wallace had a history of anti-credentialing himself both in person and in print, and while this reportorial and rhetorical maneuver may have disarmed sources it also created a calculus for Wallace to write under. He saw clear lines between journalists and novelists who write nonfiction, and he wrestled throughout his career with whether a different set of rules applied to the latter category.

I love Wallace’s non-fiction journalism more than his fiction, not because it was all true (it certainly wasn’t, by the majority of third-party accounts), but because it focused his creative process into something you didn’t necessarily need to study to enjoy. That’s not to say I enjoy them more because they’re easier—though that’s perhaps exactly what I’m doing—but because in there I find the exact kind of writing I like to both read and create. Most of my “non-fiction” writing is laced with a heavy dose of made up things, largely because I talk about made-up things in real life for the most part. I find I can’t talk about something like politics or pro wrestling while sticking with just the bare facts. Neither could Wallace, which makes me feel kind of good.



International Law on Russia’s Ukraine Intervention

Ashley Deeks:

Russia’s invasion of Crimea provides the latest evidence of two recurrent themes in “use of force” law: That many of its concepts remain malleable on paper, and that certain forcible actions fall within the core understandings of those concepts, such that most credible observers would agree that those actions violate international law.

Deeks searches for reasons for Russia’s moves into Crimea under several laws and precedents, and comes up with this.