Fish: Patten fosters the toughest workouts


Maggie Fish, Columnist

Welcome to the ultimate wrestling match between the top athletic facilities on Northwestern’s campus. The air is thick with sweat and dreams, and as the lights dim, the ring is lit with cheers and jeers as our top contenders battle for the “toughest gym” belt.

In the northeast corner we have the precious heavy weight champion, SPAC. After some extensive reconstructive surgery, he is back with more vigor than ever. With some brand-new equipment and expansive plans for his future, he is ready to get back in the game and show how far a little money can go.

In the southwest corner, we have Blomquist, the ever-surprising favorite of many of our female fans. There is not much bulk or glamour on the outside, but he is a scrappy fighter and always comes out with a number of surprising wins. Although he may not always fill the stadiums, his crowd is loyal and he hardly ever skips a workout. That kind of dedication could help him come out on top.

And finally, in the northwest corner, the elusive Patten Gymnasium. Not much is known about this contender, and most of his training techniques lay in secret. However, there is certainly a powerful energy about him that seems to engulf the arena. But with SPAC locking eyes with Blom, it seems the two old rivals have a score to settle.

And with that, the bell sounds: DING DING!

Round 1!

SPAC immediately peels himself from the ropes, and let me just say his shiny new coat is impressive. He takes a swing at Blom, with marked precision and grace. Blom takes the hit, and SPAC is already winding up to dish out another blow. SPAC is truly using all of his resources. With deep training in Mind/Body courses, his flexibility and yoga breath make him a much more limber fighter than Blom. The second hit is a contact as Blom misses another block. His is very much a superstar, folks, and the crowds of bros and protein shake sellers are going wild for what seems like an early victory. With Blom on the ground and Patten still in his starting position, the bell signals the end of round one.


Round two.

SPAC is again first out of the gate – but what’s this? Blom is reaching for a chair from outside the ring! He may not have the shiny coat given to SPAC by his sponsors, but Blom’s limber and taut physique is no trick of the light. Closer to the center of campus, his interior is the hub of fit campus life. Trained with a special focus on intramural sports and martial arts (as well as dance), Blom’s performance always more than makes up for his shortcomings. The chair makes contact, and once again, Blom stands above his rival because of pure ingenuity. SPAC immediately counters, but Blom has woken up and easily dodges with a quick sidestep. And – oh! — Blom jumps on SPAC’s back with all the energy of a sorority girl on crush night, and down SPAC goes with small but mighty kicks and punches to the glass windows. The bell rings. Now our two rivals are tied 1-1.


Round three.

And now we’re in the final round. Both SPAC and Blom have had their egos shaken but are only back stronger and more determined. The stalk each other and tread circles around the ring looking for a weakness to attack. SPAC is winding up for the first hit, and it looks like — WHOA! Wait a minute! Ladies and gentlemen …

Patten has awoken from his starting position and seems to be eyeing his opponents with disgust. Almost forgotten, he now seems to have some sort of ancient fire within him and there it goes! With lighting speed and strength that is now shaking the stadium, he locks SPAC into a headlock while simultaneously trapping Blom between his thighs. It is really something folks to see him move. Both SPAC and Blom are now flung to opposite sides of the arena and seem to be disoriented. Patten roars and pounds the mat, sending SPAC and Blom out of the ring. The referees are checking, and yes … it seems we have a DOUBLE KO!

The crowd is going wild! A dark horse, I must admit, but here stands the real champion: Patten, whose training tactics are shrouded in mystery, but whose brute force is not. It proves that money and ellipticals are no substitute for hardcore, butt-kicking workouts in the most intense gym on campus.

Maggie Fish is a Communication senior. She can be reached at [email protected]. If you want to respond publicly to this column, send a Letter to the Editor to [email protected]