When it comes to blogging and Tweeting, I’ll shoot the sh#t about mostly anything. Movies, TV shows, jokes and snark. You name it, I’ll tweet it.
However, when it comes to wrestling, I’m a tad shy about it. Alright, I’m embarrassed about it. I’m embarrassed to be a wrestling fan. It is the one TV series that if you admit you like, it means you are probably a dork. Maybe you’re a cool dork. But you are without a shadow of a doubt a dork.
One time, I tweeted something about watching Raw and one of my followers replied that I was a dork and he unfollowed me. At that point, I got scared and decided that my wrestling tweets would be few and far between. Yes, one anti-wrestling fan ruined my Twitter feed. I’d love to tweet about wrestling constantly as I have a Twitter list of wrestling writers and wrestlers that I follow on Monday nights, and yet, I feel embarrassed to join the fray.
Seriously, I’ll be sitting there on my Droid and think of something clever to say about a match and by the time I get to 125 characters, I close out. Silence is golden.
Twitter wasn’t the first place I felt the heat for being a wrestling fan. It goes back to being a Hulkamaniac as a kid. Sitting about 4 feet away from our 27-inch TV in the living room, I would watch wrestling every Saturday and Sunday morning. The biggest critic of those programs happened to be my father. He’d walk into the living room with his big belly and growl in a thick Italian accent, “GIO! WHY YOU WATCH THIS S#$T? IT IS STUPID. ONLY STUPID PEOPLE WATCH IT. I CANT BELIEVE IT. WHAT IS A MATTER WITH YOU?!”
Seriously, he could catch me watching porn and he’d be fine with it. Probably would ask me if he could borrow the tape. However, he despised wrestling and I think he was legit angry/ashamed about me watching it. Even when I came home for Christmas, I would try to sneak in some wrestling on the TV and while playing Italian cards in the kitchen, he’d look up and say the same words. I’d change the channel pretty quickly and pretend that nothing was on or the remote wasn’t working. Pick an excuse.
I really can’t tell you why I still watch wrestling. The storylines always seem to be the same and John Cena has defied the odds more times than Sam Rothstein did against black jack dealers in Casino. The writing is average and the constant pandering to kids has turned me off to no end. I usually watch every week and proceed to bitch about it afterwards or contemplate why I still watch.
However, I still set my watch to Raw on Mondays.
If you want the perfect analogy as to why I watch wrestling, it is like watching the Buffalo Bills. Like my dad’s interaction with knowing his son is a fan, how many times have you met a stranger and they scoffed/teased/rolled their eyes at you being a Bills fan. There’s always a sense of pity from them because you root for a team that sucks.
We all remember the glory days that we grew up on (4 Super Bowls, comebacks and Hall of Fame players). It is the main reason that after 12 years and counting of no playoffs and a neverending book of jokes, I sit here and watch the team play. I hold onto those memories, hoping that I can recapture my youth of cheering the Bills on.
Like the Bills, I keep hoping that wrestling will come back and make me feel like a kid again. I want to be able to live through the moments like when Hogan slammed Andre or when Steve Austin slammed beers down his mouth. I want to relive Rock and Mick Foley promos and Undertaker’s streak back when no one cared about it. I can recite all those moments by heart and have a YouTube playlist full of them.
However, the moments come rarely nowadays. Again, it is like being a Bills fan and when the team signs T.O. and Drew Bledose, you go start thinking, “This will be our year!” The ultimate storyline for entertainment. Alas, it falls on its face and you are left just bitching and thinking about the olden days.
I’ve seen Bret Hart return to the WWE, CM Punk give a shoot promo of a lifetime and now we finally have the People’s Champion returning after a 8-year hiatus from the ring. It looks so good on paper, but something just doesn’t click. I watch, breathlessly, hoping I can add a new clip to my wrestling playback on YouTube, but instead, I’m wrestling with why exactly do I watch this crap?
Because I’m a loyal guy and IF everything is set in motion and it plays out the way I envision, the shit is breathtaking. The feuds, the drama, the near falls, the psychology of not even saying or doing a move in the ring, but at the same time, sending a message to the audience by raising an eyebrow or Hulking up.
Wrestling is great because it is the one form of entertainment where you can play different characters like in Hollywood…except they are supposed to be real. It’s an industry that embraces the good and bad guys. On my wish list, I would love to wake up and have a shoot style promo on my boss like CM Punk. I wish I could rise above the hate like John Cena. I wish I could make women wet…with perspiration as the Rock used to say. I wish I could be awesome like the Miz. (Editor’s note: The Miz? Aim higher, Joe. -HB) I envy these guys because they are living the character that I can never be. Yes, I’m a dork and that’s why wrestling is great for me. It’s the ultimate show for living vicariously through others. You wanna root for the heel or face? Take your pick.
I know the product isn’t up to snuff these days, but I plan on spending 54 dollars on Sunday to hope I see a Wrestlemania moment. Also, I’m sure there is a kid somewhere, who is just hitting puberty and is a huge fan of the product and can’t wait for the biggest even in sports entertainment. For me, I just have to explain to my mom, who is visiting, why I still watch this crap. Ugh. That’s even more embarrassing than telling Twitter I’m a mark, but f#$k it. It is Wrestlemania and I’m gonna tweet play-by-play of the event….and you know where the unfollow button is if you are not happy with that.
(Editor’s note: Needs more Jericho. -HB)