I stepped into the ring; the potato chip bag sat crinkled in his corner, his sealed edges rubbing his shoulders in encouragement. The old lady whispered in my ear, “You can take him”. I jogged on the spot, moving my neck from side to side, warming up for the match. The bag growled from his corner and stood up, crinkling his red, white and green outfit, proudly displaying his flavours to the audience of soup-cans, utensils and appliances. The old lady started a round of booing and massaged some Voltaren gel into my hands. I stepped into the middle of the ring and prepared for the battle ahead. Mr. Chips came dancing forward, ready to wrestle, confident that I would not win this match. I grabbed his head and began to pull, but he was too strong and my fingers grew weak from the effort. I dropped him and his maniacal laughter followed me back to the corner. The old lady stepped in front of me. I stared at the white headband strapped around her head and the striped black and white jogging suit adorning her body. She gave me a few sips of water from a large bottle and rubbed some more gel into my joints. “It’s okay; you’ve weakened him, now go back and finish him off.” The bag danced in the middle, a premature victory dance; he wasn’t ready when I grabbed him, wrapped my arms around his neck and began to tug at his head…his crease began to split, and I heard the hiss of air release as the pressure exploded out; excited by my progress, I pulled hard, his seal burst and sent me flying backwards. His contents blasted out and rained down around me.
The old lady raised my hand in victory…and then we both looked down at the chips scattered on the floor at our feet…
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J.G. Chayko is a writer, actress, and international arthritis advocate who’s been involved in theatre for more than 30 years and has published poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction.