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Old 10-27-2009, 01:21 AM
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Default BOOMER TALE - BACK HOME, MATT AT MMA EXPO, I HEART NY

HAIL HAIL FORUM OF FORUMS!!! BOOMERS GOT A TALE TO TELL!!! For too long I have been far from the land I love and its great to be back in the good ol US of A!!!

Last week was my last week of a nine month tour in Afghanistan. This one took a lot out of me and felt the need to see some good friends soon after my arrival so once I heard Matt was going to be in New York the weekend I got back and Llamafighter and I were planning on hitting up Broadway anyway .. and Chris and Mike said that they would come into the city …. it was a win win. All I had to do was get OUT of Afghanistan in order to make my flight in Kuwait direct into DC. I had a few complications that I don't want to get into detail on, but I pushed through with a goal in sight of getting home in time to make my big apple excursion a reality!! At one point it did look like I was going to be in Bagram until the following Monday and that just would not do. I had to push were I normally would have been more passive. Well, I pushed so hard I actually made it to Kuwait two days early. I moved my plane tickets up and ended up flying out of Kuwait Wednesday night and arriving in Washington early Thursday morning.


I always get something fun once I get back with my war money that I can play with and share with others. Like last year after Iraq, 61' HDTV … of all my fight parties of course!!! This year I had my new toy waiting the Friday I got back …. 2010 Camaro .. Metallic Grey … awesome machine. I picked it up at the dealership and drove around all day with the windows down and a mix between country, Christian and R&B playing on my IPOD through the sound system. Time to break her in for the first road trip ….. New York or Bust!!

I left early Saturday with my buddy Dave from the gym I train at. Since I had not been sleeping and not sure how my body would react, I wanted a travel partner and Dave is a good friend and is in the MMA industry and is a fan of Matt .. so it all worked out well. We got to New York in no time flat and Dave saw a side of me that few in this country have. Driving in New traffic trying to get into the hotel parking lot. We circled the same place 5 times and I was starting to get pissed. Dave was laughing up a storm because he said he had never seen me angry before. He said my ears turned red …. no matter how good I am at hiding how I feel my skin tone always gives me away. I laughed about it too … well afterward …. be Dave did see a rare mood in me. Dave owns this MMA gym in C-Ville:

http://www.charlottesvillemma.com/

I sent txt to Llama and Crisco and we all soon met up on a very rainy New York night to see Phantom of the Opera. Once Mark (Llama) got to my hotel room we went in the pouring rain to a place he knew to get half price show tickets. We were going to see an 80's Rock show, but they didn't have six seats together. Mark had told me he had never seen Phantom so that sealed the deal … Phantom it was and I must say the show was amazing!!! I also had the privilege of meeting Mark and Chis' better halfs. MUCH better halfs ….. Mark's wife and Chris' girlfriend were just the best folks and added to the atmosphere and fun of the evening. Be on the look out for a new forum member that might be called something like “Llamaswifeandnothisisnotagaynamematt” as a handle.

The next day was the MMA EXPO and Mark met us in the hotel and we went and had something to eat. I had been texting with Matt trying to figure out a game plan and the verdict was I was going to meet him at the airport and ride over there with him. Also, Matt was going to take my sushi virtue and give me my first experience eating the delicacy in the big apple .. but I needed to find the place. Mark knew of a good place next to his house and his house was right next to the Airport in Queens … so I decided to drive my car to the Airport, meet Matt … do the Expo thing … get Sushi after and Matt can take off and me and Dave could drive off in a flawless execution of event planning!! yea right.

Traffic getting to the Airport on Sunday was worse than we had planned. Mark and Dave got a first hand lesson and combat driving skills 101. Matt txted me he had landed so I stepped up my “efforts” in traffic to get to where I needed to be. Once we finally get to the Airport I could have SWORN Matt said that he flew in American. I rush to the baggage claim and no Matt …. I txt him again … the response. “US Airways TARD!!” Matt was holding his driver for me to get there and I didn't want him to be late for the event so I step it out. I look down at another texted .. and it was Matt.

“I'll say this in a way you can understand .. DOUBLE TIME!”

I laugh and run across to the other terminal and sure enough .. Matt propped up against the wall waiting on my rear to get there. Great to see him. Whenever I get really focused on something I can't really let it go to easy … in Afghanistan … you have to break your mind from whats going on and just relax every once in awhile … that was really hard for me to do this time round and I found really the only thing that consistently worked was watching Matt fight. I had downloaded all his UFC fights to my ITOUCH and found myself watching his fights over and over those nine months I was there. Made me forget where I was and just get lost in the excitement of the fight .. even though I knew the out come it still had the same effect as if it was the first time I was watching it. So, seeing him standing there put a smile on my face that I couldn't hide if I wanted to. The car ride over we caught up on what was going on in life. Told him a little about Afghan and how this tour of duty was different than anything I had done in Iraq and so on.

Once we arrived, they hurried Matt in and staged his gear up front and took him to a floor cage were he would be signing autographs. I sat in there with him and was asked if I was his twin brother by some fans… you know the fat one with glasses …. I laughed and said no of course. Matt kept trying to get me to talk with some girls that were starring at him and he kept saying they were starring at me. It was stair by association. I was the easy weak target to get to the prize ….. I know the game. I did get a picture with them at the end .. AFTER they grabbed Matt for a picture and he was saying “Hey Boomer, were these the girls you've been looking at?” They took a pity picture with me.

Once when Matt was waiting for the next person to come up and get a signature he looked at me and said, “Whats the barber say?” I look at him with a question mark. He repeated the statement, “Whats the barber say??” I was about to say, “Stop touching me I'm trying to cut your hair” but I noticed kids around so I just gave a silent shrug. Matt says, “Whos next” with a half smile. Haha .. yea I need Jesus …

So, its time to go get some Sushi … and we all walk up stairs to get Matts stuff and get in the car. We go behind the security area and I am carrying Matt's belt he had on display to put it back in his bag. As I'm bending over to get the suite case somehow I knock over a to go box with a sandwich in it on the floor. I shake my head, place his belt on a chair to pick what I just knocked over and if you have never felt one of those UFC belts they have some weight to them. Those are some really thick metal plates. The belt is in the chair with just one of the waste straps hanging over the side of the chair, but the weight of the plate on the strap drags the belt off the chair and onto the floor for a loud crash!! Matt looks over and simply says, “glad those things don't break easy.” I mumble an embarrassed apology, pick up the sandwich … pick up and pack the belt and try not to cause any more destruction before we had to leave. So I can be in charge of few hundred folks in a war zone and write theater level policy … just don't let me hold a belt without causing a scene.

Matt, Llama, Dave and me climb into Matt's ride and head out for Sushi. Mark picked a heck of a spot and I must say that I am now the newest sushi fan in America. We had a great relaxing time just eating Sushi and talking about a little bit of everything. I have some pictures that I will post later, but just want to thank Mark and his wife, Chris and his girlfriend, my buddy Dave and of course Matt for a great weekend. It was just what I needed to start back to some level of normalcy. I'll be heading up Matt's way the first week of November and will be making my way up north for the FEDOR fight that weekend in Chicago. It's great to be back and thanks to all of you who kept me in good company these past nine months! Every PM, text, e-mail or package meant a lot.

Til next time my forum friends …

Boom
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Last edited by Boomer; 11-10-2009 at 02:54 AM.
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Old 10-27-2009, 01:42 AM
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Great story as usual, Boom.


Now PICTURES!
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Old 10-27-2009, 01:46 AM
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Man ,, been missing the Boomer tales!

Great trip Pal . Good to have you home.
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Old 10-27-2009, 01:55 AM
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Boomer Tales are back!!! Sounds like ya'll had a blast. Is Dave one of the guys I met in Vegas? I keep trying to find them at JJ tournaments in VA but I don't remember what they look like now.


~Amy
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Old 10-27-2009, 02:09 AM
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A short Llama-note

Great times Boomer! We'll definitely have a new forum member in the near future. She is officially a huge Matt Hughes fan as well as a fan of yours. Had a great time taking Dave on a public transportation tour of NYC and Queens. Dave was a good sport and just followed where I led (no choice I guess).
I was sitting at work today and someone asked what I did this weekend and even as I told them about the show, the expo, sitting in the cage with Matt watching him sign autographs, picking out the sushi place, riding in Boomer's 2010 Camaro, eating dinner with the 9-time welter weight champ, and just have a great time all around, it didn't seem like reality.
My buddies at work had just gotten over their jealousy over the whole UFC 98 trip and this definitely reignited that.
Boomer was Matt's acting body guard/Public relations/etc dude so once Dave and I got to the expo we thought we'd walk around and see what was all there. I signed up for just about every raffle they offered and we checked out a bunch of gear. I spotted Justin Wren from TUF 10 and we were looking at some gloves and focus mitts when I got a call from Boomer. Boomer then said "you guys wanna come sit in the cage with us, you can". so Dave and I discussed it and decided that might be fun (read: we ran over to the cage). When we got there Bomer waved us in and all the peopel in line watched as we strode by and security stepped out of our way with a gesture from King Boomer;) Matt came over and shook our hands and said hi, and I immediately sent a pic to CrisCo to let him know what he missed out on (sorry buddy). I sat for a few minutes and then Boomer turns to me and says "Matt wants to go to sushi so pick a place". NO PRESSURE!!! The guy's first sushi experience and MATT HUGHES' is coming with us. To my neighborhood, to the place of my choosing. I instantly texted my wife Bridget to get her opinion on which place was best and she had thought of the same place we'd taken my mom and sister to when they were here in August. PLus it's the place we always order from. About this time Matt turned around and said "you got a sushi place picked out?". Boomer told the rest so blah blah blah we ended up 4 blocks from our apartment in a little sushi place just the five of us.
The best part was sitting with great people and enjoying sushi (some for the first time).
*so we got a wooden boat platter of sashimi (pieces of fish, octopus, and whatnot) and we were getting towards the end so I picked up a slice of lemon with my chopsticks and said "Boomer did you try the lemon fish". Matt grabs a fake leaf garnish with his and offers it to Boomer with "tree bass"?
Thanks Boomer for everything you did for us this weekend. You always go above and beyond and one day we'll find a way to repay you. We're all set for another visit whenever you need a NY fix. Dave was awesome, and of course Matt was great. Matt gave my wife a hard time because she picked up a roll with her hands and didn't use her chopsticks. she's promised that by next time they meet she will have them figured out. "and not with the rubber band setup" as Matt said
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Old 10-27-2009, 02:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasRN View Post
Boomer Tales are back!!! Sounds like ya'll had a blast. Is Dave one of the guys I met in Vegas? I keep trying to find them at JJ tournaments in VA but I don't remember what they look like now.


~Amy
HE was definitely one of the guys that came to Vegas. he was with his wife.
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Old 10-27-2009, 02:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boomer View Post
Dave was laughing up a storm because he said he had never seen me angry before. He said my ears turned red . no matter how good I am at hiding how I feel my skin tone always gives me away.



Boom
Thank you for sharing Boomer! That part of the story made me laugh. And although I have only met you briefly a few times, you have always seemed to be the easy going type. Glad your back! When you make it over to Hillsboro, give me a ring.
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Old 10-27-2009, 02:57 PM
County Mike
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As soon as I saw the title, I knew I was sincerly going to regret missing the trip. Why did it have to fall on the same weekend as my halloween party? One of these days, I'll make it to one of these forum folk gatherings.
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Old 10-27-2009, 06:44 PM
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HE was definitely one of the guys that came to Vegas. he was with his wife.
Yup, you guys are right. Same Dave. I was with his wife, Mel for a majority of our Vegas time. She is great too, just like Dave
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Old 10-27-2009, 11:36 PM
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Boomer, now that you are back, don't forget to eat some chocolate-covered bacon.
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