February 01, 2006

My Lunch With Tyson Tomko: He had the chicken; I was too chicken

Rogers Cadenhead

Rogers CadenheadTyson TomkoWhen I took the kids to Chick-fil-a for lunch yesterday, we sat down next to this imposing looking man and his family. With his bald head, six-inch-long Fu Manchu goatee and bad-ass tattoos running from wrist to wrist over tree-trunk arms, I'm thinking he had to be one of three things: professional wrestler, rock musician or crazed South Floridian drug lord.

The latter was admittedly a long shot -- my only experience with South Floridian drug lords comes from Miami Vice and he was eating with a woman and two kids -- but it still kept me from approaching him.

"Oh, so you run coke up and down I-95? Does this mean an autograph is out of the question?"

For those who don't have Chick-fil-a in their area, it's a fast-food chain of chicken restaurants based in the South where every meal comes with a side order of ostentatious love for the Lord. The restaurants are closed Sundays, and on all other days employees constantly wish people to "have a blessed day."

I scored around five blessings in one visit, which is five more times than McDonald's or Taco Bell has ever expressed interest in my personal salvation.

As religious songs like "I Could Sing of His Love Forever" and "Shine Jesus Shine" played in the restaurant, my children were hanging with his in the Kid's Zone play area and I kept sneaking occasional Secret Service glanceovers, looking for some kind of clue that explained his appearance.

There was only one: He was dressed in shorts and had shaved legs, which suggested either a career in the entertainment business or a metrosexual lifestyle.

After he left, another patron clued me in: The guy was Tyson Tomko, a 29-year-old WWE wrestler from Jacksonville who has his own action figure.

Considering all the time I spent exhibiting an unhealthy interest in Tomko and his attractive female companion, I'm very lucky I didn't get an inverted spinning crucifix neckbreaker.

Rogers Cadenhead is one of the founders of SportsFilter

posted by rcade to commentary at 09:39 AM - 0 comments

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