Team Nihilism vs. Team Marxism
The ropes were loose dirty pieces of twine. I pulled them apart and went through. The crowd cheered as I stepped into the soiled ring. Dirt, sludge, and human slime slicked the canvass, making it slippery while wearing shoes. The “referee”, a motorcycle jacket–attired member of the East Bay Rats, asked me if I'd fought before. I nodded. The referee had us remove our shoes. My opponent, a stocky bald bro, looked silly in his socks. He took them off and put on his gloves. The referee brought us together and the fight began.
The East Bay Anarchist book fair, a small and sordid affair, took place at the Humanist Hall in Oakland earlier this month. This year, the book fair sponsored a Fight Night at the local motorcycle club house and dubbed the event “Team Nihilism vs. Team Marxism”. The East Bay Rats’ outhouse is a two-room dump on San Pablo avenue, a well-known thoroughfare for ladies of the night and, more recently, riots. The Club was lined outside with motorcycles and a bearded mormon-looking man took my money at the door. He assured me that the majority of the money would go to the local anti-repression committee. (The organizer later told me that over $1000 went to support those recently arrested in the Ferguson riots.)
As I entered the dimly lit front room, "Deathdrive,” a local punk band, railed against Oakland's mayor Jean Quan, famous for her blubbering mishaps with Occupy Oakland just a few years ago. The throbbing of the band's bass and guitar shoved the crowd into the other room and towards the ring.