The Rugged Hunger Games

“You don’t forget the face of the person who was your last hope.” 

I apologize for my online absence as of late folks, but I have have good reason. I have had some heaviness laid on me this week that I am just starting to understand. I NEVER thought that I would be the one going in. The one who would be fighting for my life, for my district…

You see, it is that time of the year again.
Time for the Games.
The Games will rule ALL of our lives this week and this is why I have not been online much.

We were all gathered in the square for the announcement. All of us. Standing around, just waiting for the names to be called. But I had a tugging feeling in my chest. A feeling that said that the one who would be picked would never stand a chance. They would be the ones who had entered the lottery several times over, not because they WANTED to enter, but because they HAD to enter, just to be able to eat.

“She reaches in, digs her hand deep into the ball, and pulls out a slip of paper. The crowd draws in a collective breath, and then you can hear a pin drop, and I’m feeling nauseous and so desperately hoping that it’s not me, that it’s not me, that it’s not me.”

I could not let that happen. So I volunteered to be the tribute from my district. I think the Capitol was just as surprised. They were wondering who is this man who used to weigh over 350 pounds. The guy who has never, EVER run in an organized race, much less a race where peril and doom lurk around every corner. Does he have what it takes to survive the Rugged Maniac Hunger Games? The Capitol loves having underdogs in the Games. They are most likely making bets against me at this very moment.

“Only I keep wishing I could think of a way…to show the Capitol they don’t own me. That I’m more than a piece in their games.” 

I knew as soon as I stepped up that I had gotten in over my head. I am  not sure that I have the killer instinct that it takes to survive. Can I throw a person out of my way in order to complete a task? Can I jump over fire and breathe in the mud?

“You know, you’re kind of squeamish for such a lethal person…” 

This week I have been whisked away to the Capitol.

I am being prepped by my mentors for the danger that lies ahead of me.

“It takes ten times as long to put yourself back together as it does to fall apart.” 

“I am not pretty. I am not beautiful. I am as radiant as the sun.” 
I am being dolled up by my stylist, Cynacool, to impress the people of the Capitol (aka Charleston.)

I am eating well and working out hard.

“The meat and plants from the woods combined with the exertion it took to get them have given me a healthier body than most of those I see around me.”

I am hoping that I can gain a following and get sponsors, but I am not sure I have what it takes. I don’t know if it is possible to make it without sponsors…

“If you appeal to the crowd, either by being humorous or brutal or eccentric, you gain favor.” 

I know that I can turn it on. I mean, I am funny, right? I have a good personality, I think. Yes. I do. I will win the crowds over and they will love me!

“You’ve got about as much charm as a dead slug.”

I think that my journey over the past 46 weeks has led me to this moment. The moment from which I can never look back. I have lost over 80 pounds and I am most likely in the best shape I have ever been in. I grew up playing in the mud. I think that will give me some advantage. I am able to jump over some things and crawl over others and I know that will keep me moving through the course. I am not afraid of fire, so leaping over it should only be mildly terrifying.

“I don’t want them to change me in there. Turn me into some kind of monster that I’m not.” 

I know that as soon as the shot goes off I will only have a few seconds to gather my wits and get out of harms way before the other tributes start trying to knock me off.

“Stupid people are dangerous.” 

I think that the first thing that I will do is look for my favorite weapon, the one that I am most adept at using…a doughnut. No wait. That is a different race.

“Yes, and I’m sure the arena will be full of bags of flour for me to chuck at people.”

I will need to find water. That will be my best chance at longevity. And I figure that a mud run will have plenty of water…

“Here’s some advice. Stay alive.”

Oh if only my mentor wasn’t a falling-down-stupid drunk…Sorry Dos Equis Man but it’s true. I don’t always take advice from a commercial, but when I do, I take it from the World’s Most Interesting Man.

All right, I’ll make a deal with you. You don’t interfere with my drinking, and I’ll stay sober enough to help you.”

I digress.

Floating barriers. Impassable terrain. Brutal conditions. And beer at the finish line. I know it seems like an impossible task ahead of me. But I will do it for you. For ALL of you. You have my word. I hope I don’t cry.

“I don’t want to cry. Everyone will make note of my tears and I’ll be marked as an easy target. A weakling. I will give no one that satisfaction.”

So now you know the truth folks. I am in danger this Saturday, March 24th, 2012. I will be competing in the Rugged Maniac Mud Run, also known in these parts as the Hunger Games. (Mainly because running around and playing in the mud makes you hungry.)

I will be representing District Beast Face and my only goal is this. Survival.

“Happy Hunger Games! And may the odds be ever in your favor.” 







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