Day 341: Wrestling Is Truly The Best [Wrasslin’ For Lunch]
It was a busy Friday night in Asbury Park. Gaggles of well-to-do upper middle classers flocked to the coast to drink their dry beers and eat their overpriced walnut-topped salads. They didn’t bat an eye at the T-Shirt laden “philistines” that walked by, but they surely batted an eye at them. “What a miserable life”, they thought, “to have the highlight of your week being sitting in the heat to eat a meal”. They filed into the dark concert hall, got a decent pat-down and were left to their own devices. This was the highlight of their week and they wouldn’t have it any other way.
At 8:00 on the dot, “Cult of Personality” played over the PA. A few people chuckled and crackled self-aware lame jokes. After the song ended, a well-dressed man with a ponytail, of whom would be described only as a ring announcer if seen in the wild, went into the ring. He announced a guy that few people had ever heard of. He was well aware that we didn’t know him, but he knew that we would remember him in some form, even if it is just as “the heel guy that wears airpods”. They were there to meet him. That was the point of them being there. After a short promo, the face came out to muddled applause. Once again, nobody knew him, however some had heard of him.
As they squared each other up, the room fell silent. The lack of sound felt like your ears were caving in. The deafening silence. Then they locked arms and got to work. They told them a story. They did what they were put on this Earth to do and that was to entertain them. They showed up at this dark concert hall on a sunny evening because they love wrestling. And within minutes of the first match, that’s what everyone remembered. It didn’t matter if they knew who was involved, the story they told was as old as time. And the same thing happened with all of the matches that followed. Silence that always evolved into noise.
Midway through, there was an intermission. All of the wrestlers came out and spread out their merchandise and wares. People moseyed around and made awkward small talk with the wrestlers. Some bought T-Shirts via PayPal. It’s something that you don’t expect to see, but it’s laid out in front of you. These are people trying to make an honest living in a dishonest industry, housed in a dishonest world. They’re just like us, but they put their bodies through a whole lot more than we do. You can make a lot more money sitting behind a desk, but nobody will remember you. These men and women are a slave to their craft and to be frank, they’re just happy that you showed up.
And the night continued like before. 20 to 30 people wore out their voice boxes trying to sound like 30,000. The wrestlers were conducting a symphony and the audience were the instruments. Everyone left feeling like they had not only witnessed something special, but that they were a part of something.
Wrestling is truly the best.
It was a busy night in Chicago. Gaggles of starry-eyed wrestling fans walked towards the United Center. Tourists stood around and wondered what all those people were excited for. Michael Jordan season was not in session. What could possibly be going on inside of that large building? “What a miserable life”, the fans thought, “to be standing so close to history but never even realize it”. They filed into the basketball arena, got a decent pat-down and were left to their own devices. This was the highlight to their week and they wouldn’t have it any other way.
At 9:00 on the dot, “Cult of Personality” played over the PA. At once, 15,000 people screamed at the top of their lungs. It was the guy they never thought they would see again. The guy that everybody knew. The guy that cut his teeth fighting in empty concert halls, found his way to the top, got sick of the politics of the business and disappeared for 7 years. And now, without any formal hype, announcement or introduction, he had returned in the city that loved him the most. He stopped to hug someone in the front row. Then he turned around and did a stage dive into the crowd on the other side. All to the loudest collection of roars and screams that you had ever heard in your life. Grown men cried and children realized what they wanted to do for the rest of their lives..
As he finally made it into the ring, the noise still couldn’t be contained. The sound felt like your ears were caving in. The deafening roar. Then he told them a story. He did what he was put on this Earth to do and that was to entertain them. They showed up at an arena on a starry evening because they love wrestling. And within minutes, they all knew that they were experiencing something truly special. The crowd remained at a fever pitch, even after he left the ring.
After the promo, many flocked to the souvenir stand. In fact, the line wrapped around the entire arena. They all wanted a T-Shirt to commemorate the night. To say that they were there. Meanwhile, on the internet, Pro Wrestling Tees crashed due to heavy volume. They all needed his shirt. It was then that it hit us: we’ve been disillusioned by mainstream wrestling for so long. The big wigs have conditioned us into accepting what they think is right for their wallets, because we love wrestling so goddamn much. We tend to forget that these guys are people just like us. They’re trying to make an honest living in a dishonest industry. And now that He has returned, to a company that puts the wrestlers and fans first, we’re all left with a glimmer of hope. This could be the moment where everything changes. Or maybe not. But either way, everyone is really glad that they showed up.
And the night continued like before. 15,000 people wore out their voice boxes trying to sound like 150,000. The wrestlers were conducting a symphony and the audience were the instruments. Everyone left feeling like they had not only witnessed something special, but that they were a part of something. Also, they all got free ice cream.
Wrestling is truly the best.