July 31st, 2010 15:58 EST
Who Say`s Your Too Old to Accomplish Anything!? Even to Fight in the MMA
A lot of times we look at people, especially older people and say to ourselves, That old fart couldn`t run up a flight of stairs if he had a motorized cart attached to his behind - Or, we look at older people and think they are done, they can do no more than sit in the Mall`s Food Court every morning drinking coffee and hanging out with their Senior Citizen buddies every day then going home and taking a nap for the rest of the day. Not true! Or, not true for at least one older guy, John Williams.
John Williams who is 70 years old from New Brunswick, Canada decided to do something about the myths about older people and Senior Citizens in our society. He decided to fight in an MMA (Mixed Martial-Arts) match. John has always been into the Martial-Arts all his life, but decided to take his skills to prove a point. He commented, I was trying to bring attention to the fact that when a person becomes a senior, society kind of pushes them out of the loop. " (Williams, 2010). He further commented, The attitude towards them is that they are dumb, they can`t do anything physically and they are just vegetables. " (Williams, 2010).
John is very serious to prove to society that older people are not really much different than people in the 20s and 30s. He said he still thinks the way he did at 30 years old, still has the same taste in cars as he did at 30 years old, and still feels like he was 30 years old both physically and mentally, even at the ripe old age of 70.
Williams further said that basically people that are senior citizens in this society are branded as being useless. Well, no way was he going to just take this attitude our society has by just sitting there and doing nothing. This quest was not a quest that happened in a few days, it took over five years to be able to fulfill.
When Williams was a young man at 65 years old, and when he started the ball rolling on this quest, he had the big issue of getting licensed to be able to fight in the MMA. Every fighter has to get licensed first to fight in any sport, MMA, boxing, etc. and it takes a lot to be able to get licensed. The Athletic Commission has to be the ones that grant you the license.
You have to first pass an extensive physical. You have to pass and take extensive blood tests and heart stress tests, heart monitoring tests, you have to get physical, run on a treadmill, etc. Williams did all this and was in such good shape his heart resting rate would have made a 20 year old runner jealous.
Still, even though John passed every test the Athletic Commission threw at him, he was still looked at by the Commission as a liability. Since basically John could categorize fighting in the MMA as his job, he has been in the Martial-Arts all his life; he decided to pull out the big guns to seal his case. He went and looked up every statue in law on age discrimination.
He knew saying that to fight in the MMA was his job, no one could discriminate against him on that and that no one could stop him from accomplishing this goal. He said he could have very well done an armature fight or a charity thing, but it was not the same as doing a real fight in front of lots of fans. So, he was going to do everything he could like a freight train at full throttle to be able to do a real fight in the MMA. After the five years of battling it out with the Athletic Commission, they finally succumbed to John`s request and granted him the license to fight in the MMA.
After getting the hard part of out the way, John had another challenge and obstacle to overcome. He had to find someone that was actually going to want to fight him. Most fighters he knew would look at this in two ways. The first was that if they fight John and win, it would be looked at that they were just beating up an old man. The other way was if they do fight John and lose; they would ruin their reputation as a fighter because they just got beat up by an old man, sort of a double-edge sword problem.
How was John going to be able to convince another MMA fighter to go the rounds with him in the ring? John did it in sort of a weird way or let`s say it just happened in a different way. John went to buy a car from someone he knew that owned a car lot. John, while buying the car got into an argument over the car payments with the guy that owned the car lot. John has kind of a short temper, so the two warriors almost went at it in the car lot.
John`s son also bought a car from the same guy, and when his son went to see the owner of the car lot to discuss another problem, the car lot owner said to John`s son, that John thinks he is pretty tough and is looking to fight someone in cage fighting, why doesn`t he fight him? So, the fight of the century was on, not like Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier, but in the same context.
During this tenure of getting the fight established a few records were broken, first John fighting in the MMA at 70 years old and second the combined age of the two fighters was 119 years old! Howard Cosell would turn over in his grave if he heard about this one.
Duirng the fight, oh! And by the way, the guy`s name John was fighting was Brubaker the car lot owner. The fight didn`t start out like your Sugar Ray Leonard Roberto Duran bruhaus, but started out sort of like two kids meeting by the flag pole after school to settle an argument with other than their mouths.
John states the fight was a bit of a blur, but does remember attacking with a flurry of back fists that made their mark on Brubakers face which opened up his face, then Brubaker countered with a kick to John`s body. All of this in the first round. The turning point of the fight was in the second round when John attacked without the combat fighting techniques of punching and kicking but rather with MMA submission holds which turned out to be the winning edge in two rounds for John.
John made his point to the world. You are never too old to do anything and senior citizens are very useful other than for napping and drinking coffee. He went on to say, You only live one time and then you`re gone forever. "If you`re remembered by people for something, then it`s like you`re an immortal". (Williams, 2010)
Good point, John! Maybe in the famous words of John Williams we can take a little lesson in life from those words and put them to use in our own lives. What do I take from those famous words of John? GO FOR IT!, Live life everyday as if it was your last day on earth and the most important thing, have fun while you are doing it! " (Anselm, 2010).
Fowlkes, Ben, MMA Writer, 70-Year-Old MMA Fighter John Williams Got in the Cage to Feel Alive Again, (http://www.mmafighting.com/2010/07/29/70-year-old-mma-fighter-john-williams). Retrieved 2010.