“This is a song about a professional wrestler named Ox Baker, master of the heart punch. You get hit with a heart punch you could possibly die, that’s the word on the street about Ox Baker! If he hits you with that heart punch you could land in the hospital or the grave. That’s a hell of a thing to have happen to you, if you just went in, maybe trying to wrestle scientifically. Like a goddamn good-guy, baby-face, going in there,wrestle, you know, doing like the holds and the moves, and Ox Baker comes around and he’s six-foot-four and he has a handle bar mustache and he’ll punch you straight in the goddamn heart as soon as look at you!
That’s the thing about Ox, is that you’re there to score a victory, you know, and to gain glory for yourself and for your family name. Ox Baker has a t-shirt that says ‘I Like to Hurt People.’ So you guys have different ideologies, one of you has this ideology of like good and evil and probably Courtly Love and all kinds of other things. Ox’s ideology is primitive and dark and springs from the rocks underneath us and we can’t even understand it because we graduated from it a long time ago. But Ox is very interesting, he’s darker, more primitive, base, earthen ideas, but he doesn’t express it that way, he expresses it by punching you in the goddamn heart!
So it’s probably going to be hard times for you when you get into it with Ox cause he doesn’t really care. You care, Ox doesn’t care, the guy who doesn’t care has a big advantage!
In life, generally speaking. It has the disadvantage, as far as like feeling at home with the world; where the victor would be you. This is a song that imagines that Ox Baker has been taken away somehow and dumped because they wanted to get rid of him, because they don’t understand his philosophy, right?
But Ox will come back, that’s really, that’s my message. That’s why I’m in this business in the first place, to let everybody know that Ox is coming back.
He will come again, in the sort of glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end!
“I slammed the refrigerator door so hard the milk exploded, then I turned around and told her to shut it or I’d punch her mustache off her face and watch it fly across the room like a hairy bug. Then I flapped my arms like I was flying, like a bug, like her mustache. Now, I know I crossed a line there, but I hope some people can at least appreciate how much restraint it actually took on my part to not just turn around and haul one off on her.”
From “Punching Jackie” by Matt Sumell, recommended by Electric Literature. Read it for free tomorrow in Electric Literature’s weekly fiction magazine, Recommended Reading.
jd: d-don’t do the falling voice thing, that’s over with, that time is past. you know how i know? cause your dad sang it. it’s crossed over to dad territory. if your dad throws you the lolcats, that’s when you know it’s over with.
some audience member: fuck!
jd: [laughs] i like that [laughs harder] not sure if you caught that but i said if your dad throw you the lolcats it’s over, the guy goes “FUCK!”
jd: this is a song about a professional wrestler named ox baker! master of the heart punch. if you get hit with the heart punch you could possibly die, that’s the word on the street about ox baker. that if he hits you with that heart punch you could land in the hospital or the grave. it’s a hell of a thing to have happen to you, if you just went in and maybe tried to wrestle scientifically, like a goddamn goodguy babyface going in there [mumble] ‘oh i can do the holds and the moves’ and then ox baker comes in and he’s 6′4″ and he has a handlebar mustache! and he’ll punch you straight in the goddamned heart! cause that’s, that’s the thing about ox. you’re there to score a victory y;know and gain glory for yourself and your family name. ox baker has a t shirt that says “I LIKE TO HURT PEOPLE.” so you’re, you’re, you guys have different ideologies. one of you, has this ideology of good and evil, and probably courtly love and all kinds of other things. ox’s ideology is primitive and dark and springs from the rocks underneath us and we can’t even understand because we graduated from it a long time ago, but ox is very interested in these darker, more primitive, earthen-based ideas. but he doesn’t express it that way, he expresses it by PUNCHING YOU IN THE GODDAMN HEART. it’s probably gonna be hard times for you [mumble] cause he doesn’t really care! you care, he doesn’t care! they guy who doesn’t care has a big advantage, in life generally speaking. he has a disadvantage as far as like feeling at home in the world, but he has an advantage over you.
jd: this is a song that imagines that ox baker has been taken away, somehow, and dumped because they want to get rid of him because they don’t understand his philosophies. but ox will come back. that’s really- that’s my message, that’s why i’m in this business in the first place. to let everybody know: that ox is coming back. he will come again. in a sort of glory to judge the living and the dead. and his kingdowm will have no end.