There Are No Cinderellas

There Are No Cinderellas

A Story by Allen Skip

“I want what all men want. I just want it more.”

-Achilles


            I stood there in the middle of the gym, my clothes soaked from perspiration as I worked my way around the trainer’s pads. Every sharp move I made was followed by a loud breathless grunt and tiny clouds of sweat dispersed from my five-foot-seven lanky frame, shimmering in the glare of the bright lights above. The trainer kept up the relentless onslaught, burying me with a barrage of furious punches from all directions as the hands on the clock lurched towards midnight.

One! Two! Three! Overhand!

Four! Five! Six! Duck!

Seven! Eight! Duck and left hook!

C’mon now, keep up with me!

            I launched hundreds of blows, bobbing and weaving to the trainer’s reaction, and occasionally wincing in pain whenever a counter-punch would crash into my ribs. After each intense session of sparring came a two-minute break, a microscopic space in time to expend all the air in my lungs and get back into a proper stance before the battering came again. And again. And again.

            As my body screamed in agony, begging for me to stop, my mind remained inexplicably calm. I wanted the pain, wanted the opportunity to cleanse myself of  the missed hits, the chin-strikes, the sloppy footwork, and above all else: the unembellished, embarrassing thought of failure. A slow, blood-curdling sense of rage started to boil from within me. It rose in crescendo, colliding against the walls inside my skull in waves. I began developing a rhythm, aligning my madness to its melody, drowning out any body ache I suffered into a muffled harmonious tune. A Muhammad Ali poster pinned to the wall observed me from behind. There was plenty of action to witness.

            A gruesome half-hour later, I took my long walk toward the locker room; my whole body was encased within transparent bags of ice and a collection of towels. As I opened the door, I heard my trainer speak from what seemed like miles away, “It was a good loss, son.” Glancing back, I gave him a weak, sheepish smile before answering with a wistful, “Yeah…”

But we both knew he was lying, there was no such thing as a good loss. There was only the question of, ‘What now?’ Was here, finally, the moment where you laid down and just melted into the floorboards, crushing your status quo under the weight of your defeat? Or perhaps there was no clock tower announcing your doom; perhaps there was simply the next line, the next run, on and on... until you eventually crossed over.

Whenever I traverse back in time to this particular memory, I realize that I had let my life become a victim of my losses. It was then I decided that enough was enough, that I had to introduce change. Sometimes, the fear of continued failure fractures your state of mind, freezing you in a time continuum where there are no cinderellas, no fairy tales to guide you along in life. The recognition that must be established now is not whether this notion is true, because it always is, but what must be done to embrace it and move forward.

During that faithful evening, I had lost against an opponent at practice. Four hours later, I understood that what truly mattered was not the logic behind losing, not the science behind skill, and certainly not the biological transfer of natural talent. What truly mattered was to have faith in something that was never there.

And so, I made the kind of choice I would normally scoff at, the kind of choice I was afraid to believe in because in reality, it was impossible to attain.

I chose to never lose, ever again.

 

“As you think, so shall you become.”

-Bruce Lee

 
 

© 2013 Allen Skip


My Review

Would you like to review this Story?
Login | Register




Featured Review

nothing about this sounded contrived or artificial, so, it read quickly and with great ease.your writing skills are next to superb and there is very little need for polishing.
i only found one thing that seemed not to fit. in the second to last paragraph you used the word "faithful" where it seemed to be inferring "fateful". other than that one little distraction i found this to be quite a marvelous write. keep up the solid writing and enjoy your talents.

Posted 8 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

Full of emotion and heart. A great write. Your style is superb!

Posted 8 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

[send message][befriend] Subscribe
B30
Very very good. All the lines matched the scenario, and everything fit very well.

The thought of it all comes into play and you've done a marvelous job. Well done!

Posted 8 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

nothing about this sounded contrived or artificial, so, it read quickly and with great ease.your writing skills are next to superb and there is very little need for polishing.
i only found one thing that seemed not to fit. in the second to last paragraph you used the word "faithful" where it seemed to be inferring "fateful". other than that one little distraction i found this to be quite a marvelous write. keep up the solid writing and enjoy your talents.

Posted 8 Years Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.

I love this, I honestly do. The language you use is raw and real, and the story you portray is realistic. You definitely have a strong sense of image and vision!

Posted 8 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Stats

347 Views
4 Reviews
Rating
Added on October 24, 2012
Last Updated on April 17, 2013

Author

Allen Skip
Allen Skip

Brooklyn, NY



Writing
Pistol Pistol

A Poem by Allen Skip



Related Writing

People who liked this story also liked..