Mud Wrestling Warms Queen St Flat

Mud Wrestling Warms Queen St Flat

Nothing like unfiltered dirt to make a house feel like a home

A Queen Street flat has elevated the flat warming game after holding a WWE-esque mud wrestling match to a cheering crowd of about 40 on Saturday, April 27. A couple days later, Critic Te Ārohi sat down with the brains and brawn of the event, fourth-years Ben and Robbie, for the inside scoop.

Ben told Critic that the scheme had been cooked up while they were planning the flat warming. “We discussed that we needed to have some spectacle, cos flat warmings are just kind of the same,” he said. They wanted to do something fun, but were limited by their lack of funds. “So we’re like, we have a pool already,” he shrugged. 

After passing up the idea of jelly wrestling, and realising they probably couldn’t afford to fork out for “filtered dirt,” the boys found a Facebook Marketplace ad from a couple giving away free dirt. “And then a day later we were just collecting dirt from their backyard,” said Ben, after hiring the OUSA trailer to pick it up. “We told them we were taking out garbage,” laughed Robbie. 

The problem, though, was that the pile had been used “as some kind of dump trash pile in the past.” This was evidenced by Skittles wrappers, broken glass, and chicken bones all being found in the mix. “It was like, ‘Oh man, this is way dirty,’” said Robbie. The boys took out “all the shit that could’ve injured us,” having panned through some of the dirt with a sieve. Piss in the pool from party-goers sadly couldn’t be filtered out. 

There were admittedly some concerns over “toxoplasmosis and sepsis” and they’d wondered whether any potential cat poo in the mud would make them go blind. “Yeah there was a brief moment there when we were like, ‘Maybe we shouldn’t do this,’” said Ben. But talks over emptying it were thwarted by the excitement of expectant attendees. “People are gonna wanna see it,” Ben reflected, “so we’re like, ‘Fuck it.’ Wetsuits, booties, goggles, helmets, everything. Just as long as we don’t get it in our mouths, we should be fine.” 

Eye witnesses forced to duck between splashes of mud speculated that not swallowing the sludge would’ve been a hard task for wrestlers. Speaking to Critic the following Monday, Ben said, “I thought I was gonna throw up halfway through today, but that might be unrelated.” 

A chair to the face, capitalising on Ben’s concussion, may have also had a role to play in the following day’s brutal hangover. “But it’s okay, though, because it was so fun,” said Ben. “Like it was genuinely probably the highlight of my year so far, which is really upsetting, but like it was so worth it. I’m stoked.”

“I don’t reckon either of us were too violent – except for the chair,” said Robbie. “I think my nose is a bit broken,” Ben complained. The boys attributed the combination of a funnel they’d each sunk before the fight and the thick wetsuits they wore as the reason why neither were “able to feel much.” Ben did admit he was “on the verge of throwing up the whole time,” though.

The win was heavily contested since they “never really set any rules,” but Ben claimed the W after dumping Robbie out of the pool earned him the crowd’s approval. “I didn’t care what the outcome was,” Ben said humbly. “I’m just glad it was something people actually enjoyed [...] It was worth the possibility of getting really sick.”

Ben’s parents had been there earlier in the night but, not wanting to “embarrass” him, they’d left – having to rely on videos taken by his cousin for their own comfort. Grandma also got a video: “She likes to keep up to date with what we’re doing.” A few of Ben’s past residents from his time as an RA also showed up, to his chagrin. “So I think all the kind of adulting that I’d worked up throughout my years of [being an RA] just went out the window,” he laughed. “But my parents were stoked that I won, that’s all I care about.”

One spectator, fourth-year student Peter, said that as a plus one to the party, he didn’t know what he was getting himself into. Walking past the pool on the way into the flat, Peter said he’d thought, “Oh, what a gross little paddling pool [...] And then when old mate jumped up onto the table in his wetsuit and yelled, ‘Everybody get outside, it’s mud wrestling time,’ I went, ‘Oh, true.’” 

While Peter said that it took a second for everyone to warm up, it didn’t take long before “everyone was so into it – people were yelling at them and throwing mud, and someone tried to give one of the guys a cigarette, passing chairs to the guys in the mud to use on each other.” He said that most people had their phones out, which Peter thought was “a shame – you’d love to see people living in the moment a little bit more.” 

Two spectators were so enticed they stripped down to their underwear and had a fight of their own after Ben and Robbie. “I like to think I’ve been around the blocks of North Dunedin once or twice and I’ve never seen anything like that at a flat party, so props to them,” said Peter.

Overall, Ben and Robbie said they’d rate their flat warming 11/10. “If you’re thinking about a flat party theme, just do a mud wrestle,” said Robbie. “Or maybe do a jelly wrestle, then you won’t get diseases.” With a twinkle in his eye, Ben concluded, “The photos are too good. I can’t regret anything about it."

This article first appeared in Issue 10, 2024.
Posted 7:57pm Sunday 5th May 2024 by Nina Brown.