I went back and forth about this blog. I have started writing stuff a half dozen times, stopped and trashed it with the idea of just putting up the video and letting that speak for itself.
I finally came to the conclusion that the back story is important and I should cover it.
A couple of month ago I got a call from Mike the Machine Bruce. “I have a favor to ask…..I wanna do the neck feat one more time and set a world record. Will you help me?” He explained the details. I told him he was insane, then agreed.
I first met the Mike Bruce in 2006 through our mutual friend Bud Jeffries. Mike wasn’t the Machine yet, he was strong and in amazing condition but he (nor I) had begun to seriously pursue performing feats of strength as a means to spread a message of inner strength and the ability to live fully.
Now, in 2012, 80+ shows later, Mike The Machine Bruce has proven many times that he has the World’s Strongest Neck. He developed one of the most dangerous feats ever conceived. We have done this feat many times together, and the first few times I was almost unable to do it. Not because I wasn’t strong enough. I can bend 5/8 steel without much trouble at all. No, the trouble was this: In any feat there is a chance of injury if something goes wrong. Bending 5/8 inch thick steel bars across the throat goes beyond “potential injury” and into the realm of “ I hope I don’t kill my friend”.
This would not be the first time we did the feat. We have done it with one bar more times than I can count, in many shows. At the AOBS dinner. Most recently at the Arnold Classic. This time the stakes were higher, though. The Machine decided to set a world record and retire the feat. The conditions were simple: As many bars as possible bent across his throat in 60 seconds. Our mentor and friend Grandmaster Strongman Dennis Rogers was there along with over 200 people as we completed 7 bars in 57 seconds. The spirit of the Mighty Atom was there with us, and he was pleased.
Next time I hear someone spouting off about how “hardcore” they are with their fitness training, I am going to direct them to video below.
WARNING: This video is disturbing because it shows something that, in any other circumstance, would be called attempted murder. DO NOT attempt this feat without the appropriate training. Seriously.
photos by Mandy Whitley Photography