Admittedly, I didn’t watch WrestleMania 34. As a matter of fact, I don’t watch wrestling anymore at all. I guess you can say I grew out of it. I know it’s still giant, and there are still a ton of fans, but I just can’t get into like I did when I was younger. And by younger, I mean 28 or so. That’s when I discovered how much fun it was to suspend reality and enjoy wrestling for it really is, a soap opera for men. Straight men, I should say.
Enter the latest escapee from the brutal world of MMA into the squared circle, “Rowdy” Rhonda Rousey. Once the baddest woman on the planet, she is now exchanging pulled punches with the normal cast of WWE characters, including the daughter of the owner of the company. The irony of her making a fraction of the money actually fighting people being replaced with basically rough dancing is too much. I’m happy for her. My buddy Seth Petruzelli told me that fighting for a living gets old quickly. I can only imagine that’s ten fold to someone who may want to start a family someday. Not saying that both aren’t achievable, but it’s hard to breast feed when you’re getting punched in the neck by some Croatian beast who’s fighting so her family of 30 doesn’t have to eat dirt soup next week.
Wrestling will always have a place in my heart, because it’s the reason I have one of the best stories of my childhood. The day my grandfather punched me like a man, when I was 9 years old. Even at that age I knew wrestling was fake. Even at 9, I knew a man couldn’t take three straight minutes of being punched in the face and walk away. It was during a match between Harley Race and Ivan Koloff that it all came to a head. Me, my two uncles, my cousin and my grandfather were gathered around the television on a stereotypical Saturday watching the stories unfold. As the match became heated, the choreography started to get downright absurd. It was undeniable, these guys weren’t fighting at all. Anyone with an inkling of common sense could see that it was not just fake, but grossly fake. I thought I’d share my thoughts with the room. Turns out, that was a horribly bad idea. Without a blink, flinch, pause, delay or stutter my grandfather punched me in my face like it was a Swayze movie. It hurt. Bad. But not as bad as the reality that my entire family had a collective IQ of 6. That stung for years.
With all that said, give me a Stone Cold Steve Austin promo followed by a Stunner on some jobber, and I’m right back in there!!