Pat Benatar taught me long ago that love is a battlefield, but I had never quite understood until a 250-lb, 6’2″ bald man was throwing punches at me. We had been introduced just a few minutes before, at the start of Muay Thai boxing class for singles. The introductions had been followed by a 10-minute warmup, which was so thoroughly ass-kicking that everyone had sweated through their shirts. So much for my super cute workout outfit!
And now he was boxing. I was holding pads, of course, but that didn’t entirely alleviate the fear factor. Not only was he twice as big as me, but he had a lot of trouble remembering the correct order of the shots. We were doing a combination routine, and it called for me to move the pads around to block his shots. So if he threw an elbow when I was expecting a knee, I’d be taking home a black eye instead of a phone number.
I made it through unscathed, though, and finally it was my turn to do the hitting. “Pretend it’s someone you really don’t like,” said the instructor. What a setup for romance–picturing exes and ex-bosses over the face of my new date while I whack at him as hard as I can.
That’s not to say there wasn’t anything sexy about the event. Who knew that effectively kneeing someone in the groin requires the exact same hip thrust that Patrick Swayze taught Jennifer Grey in the beginning of “Dirty Dancing”? You can be sure no one will be putting me in the corner anymore.