!BANG! TV Report – Funk v. Schlenk? Ring the bell, raise some funds
By Dave Schlenker
Entertainment editor – Ocala Star Banner
Be warned Dory Funk Jr.: I spent many hours watching Dusty Rhodes bounce around the wrestling ring, pile-driving and chair-whacking and sleeper-holding and such.
Granted, I watched the heavy-weight icon while eating chips and slamming RC Colas. But, as an impressionable 8-year-old who weighed as much as the soda can, I picked up a few things.
So when Team Schlenk squares off against Team Funk on Nov. 24 at the Dory Funk Arena, I may have a trick or two lined up for Mr. Funk Jr. in the ring.
That’s right. Funk v. Schlenk. I, a 150-pound newspaper columnist with a penchant for smooth jazz, will take on Dory Funk Jr., a towering WWE Hall of Famer from the famed, bone-crushing Funk family.
This is not a joke.
The event is a fundraiser for the Marion County Literacy Council. Stranger still, it is part of my strategy to kiss a horse. That is, of course, if I am able to move my lips after fighting Funk, who also teaches local athletes to crush people at his Ocala wrestling academy.
You see, the Marion County Literacy Council asked me to participate in its annual Kiss the Horse For Literacy campaign this year. Participants must raise money for MCLC, a very worthy organization that provides literacy programs for adults. The participant who raises the most money gets to kiss Georgia the Arabian horse on Dec. 1 at the Grand Finale Kiss Off.
MCLC encourages participants to come up with creative ways to raise money and awareness. So, naturally, I challenged a wrestling legend, one with experience in barbed-wire matches, to a smackdown. I think they are still called smackdowns; I tend to watch more HGTV than wrestling these days.
No matter. The word “smack” remains a factor in wrestling, and I have been encouraged to smack-talk Dory Funk Jr. to amp up the stakes. After all, we will be fighting, and bloodthirsty fans will be screaming some smack of their own.
Truth be told, Funk is a really nice guy. And I will feel guilty hurting him so much. He is, after all, like 500 years old and needs a good Schlenker whuppin’ to realize it’s finally time to leave the ring and buy a golf cart in The Villages.
I now tell you Funk’s a punk! And his feet stink and he’s too tall and, I’ve heard, he hates puppies. His time has come and gone. There’s a new legend in town, and his feet do not smell as bad.
I’M TALKING ABOUT ME! You hear me, Funk? Are you listening, Ebeneezer?? Even though I have nothing against you whatsoever, THIS IS PERSONAL! PERSONAL in all CAPS, which, for newspaper columnists, is REAL personal, Buster.
Incidentally, when I told my 13-year-old daughter I was wrestling Dory Funk Jr., she said, “Dory? You mean the clueless blue fish from ‘Finding Nemo?’ ” Yeah, that’s right, Dory “Willard Scott Just Announced My Birthday” Funk Jr., even my daughter is on to you.
Man, this IS fun.
I could go on. And I will — relentlessly — until Nov. 24, when, perhaps, my mouth will not work so well. In the meantime, know this: Stinky Feet Funk couldn’t pile-drive a red wagon. BAM!
Speaking of the day I will be in traction, Funk v. Schlenk starts at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 24 at the Dory Funk Arena, 3598 SW 74th Ave. Tickets are $20, which also gets you admission into Funk’s regularly scheduled December 1st wrestling event. A nice offer, really, from a puppy-hating, clueless fish. BAM AGAIN!
All proceeds will benefit the Marion County Literacy Council. To buy tickets or contribute to my MCLC campaign, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the end, I plan to kiss a horse. At the very least, I will hug the ropes.
(2 Shows for the Price of 1 – Season’s Beatings 1 November 24th and Season’s Beating’s 2 December 1st)