December 16, 2005 by Matthew Geddes
My girlfriend hates wrestling. I respect the fact that she hated it before she met me, and five years on she still hates it while respecting my love of it. In all truth, I think she secretly liked The Rock and maybe fancied RVD, and she kinda got it when I was upset when Eddie died. But she hates it.
While she hates it, she certainly does not discourage me from loving it. Indeed just last night on the way home from our club, our local DVD rental store had a 5 for $10 special for three nights. She encouraged me to get some wrestling DVD's to watch while she's at work at nights for the next couple of nights. So I got HBK, Benoit, Guerrero, Austin etc.
As I took them to the counter, the guy serving (probably late 20s) asked an obviously stupid question: - "Do you like wrestling" You know it's all fake you know!" Hmmm... first thought was Jeff Jarrett's line: "if you like it you don't need an explanation. If you don't, no explanation is good enough." But then he asked "Why don't you watch UFC""
Now being in Australia, I haven't had much of a chance to see much UFC, and to be honest, it was only Ken Shamrock that first piqued my interest in it. So, trying not to let my simmering come to the boil, said "Oh I like Ken Shamrock but I haven't seen much of it."
"Yeah Shamrock is cool" he said, enthusiastically.
"Oh didn't you like him in the WWF then"" My gal, though not a fan, has enough knowledge to sense my tirade coming on and quickly ushered my out of the store.
What is it with non-believers "
I don't like golf, but I sure as hell respect Tiger Woods.
I went home and watched a bunch of the greatest sports entertainment anyone could hope for. My gal went to the bedroom and watched Keira Knightley in Pride And Prejudice. Dunno what the poor bastard at the video shop did. Hope it was fun.
by Matthew Geddes ..
Editor's Note: Generally speaking I'd put a piece this short into the Fan Jam, but Matt has very succinctly stated what most of us, as wrestling fans, have experienced at one time or another. The Tiger Woods line is a great one to use on non-believers!
Tommy Davis wrote:
I know exactly what your talking about. There really is nothing more annoying then some know it all who thinks he's so great saying "You now wrestling's fake." I think over the years I have been told that at least 5o times. I try comparing it to scripted T.V programmes but I guess non-believers will never really understand.
But who cares about them anyway!
Matt you are right what else can I say" The quote you put in the column------ "if you like it you don't need an explanation. If you don't, no explanation is good enough." I use that quote all the time... No one understands wrestling but the people who do wrestle and the fans.. (UFC is not that good anyways) But like I said---What else can I say"
I love that Jeff Jarett quote, I will use it next time. I know exactly how you feel. I tire having to be the defender of pro wrestling wherever I go. I even have to Kayfabe things for people (girls) around me who are kind of into it but would stop watching if i "spoiled" it for them by explaining to them how that blood really appeared and why that wrestler laying on the ground is not dead after a piledriver. So I purposely act dumb and just tell them "Well, wrestling is tough. Most people who try it, would get seriously hurt." I am more than happpy to protect the sport in that way, as long as people stay interested. On the other side of the coin, once I wanted to purchase a DVD from "Pro Wrestling Iron" in California and the clerk stared at the cover and said "Well, doesn't this just look silly." People like this guy, are not even worth talking to. No matter what you say, it won't matter.
B Simmons wrote:
The key for me is being sold. If the story is good, and the performance is good, I'm sold. This goes for movies, plays, opera ... and wrestling. I've drifted away from wrestling because I didn't like the stories, and the performances were lacking. I grew up with the Memphis-Nashville stuff in the 1960's, and aside from the effect of nostalgia on my opinion, I was trained to expect a certain quality of performance.
I've got this one friend who is like the guy you were
talking about. I got into a discussion about it one
day and he made all the normal non-beliver comments,
and amoung other things I pointed out facts like when
Angle snapped Scottie Too Hottie's ankle and HHH's
tendon snapping... and now although he still don't
like it, he has to admit that a lot of stuff that
happens isn't "set-up" and can't be faked. I think
making at least one non-believer acknowledge this is a
good hit for those of us that love wrestling. :)
So true, my friend. To this day, when I get asked that, I just smile and laugh and speak in japanese to them. Hey, if they want to call me out for liking a "fake" industry, I can call them out in a different language and make them look stupid. It's fun.
Sometimes though, I do get defensive. I just say something along the lines of "think James Bond or Jet Li, except without the do-overs, cuts, retakes, stunt doubles(this excludes Li)." It's hard to let non-fans or arrogant fans know the truth because just like the rest of humanity, they don't want to open their ears to anything they don't believe in and try to understand. Unlike many of the rest of those who visit this site, I don't get called out much, because the people I know and who know me pretty much have already learned my views on wrestling. That happens if you've lived in one place for eleven years, while loving wrestling.
Brian Bertrand wrote:
I hate when people stand there and talk crap about
wrestling and how they think it's "fake". I am not
even a semi-pro yet and when I was training with APW,
it was real enough for me.
If you remember, Vince McMahon says on The Unreal
Story of Professional Wrestling that "Wrestling is not
a sport, it is sports-entertainment." There is no
competition other than which match is more
entertaining. Yeah, it's pre-determined. Yeah, guys
train to fall and do the moves. If they didn't then
someone will get hurt or even worse.
Wrestling is not a "fake" industry. Wrestling is a
multi-million dollar industry that still has a grip on
the popular culture of the world. No matter where you
go, there will always be a place for wrestling,
whether it is WWE, TNA, or independants. You will
still see some people walking around with shirts of
their favorite wrestler (people still do).
Serge Moniquet (Belgium) wrote:
I fell in love with wrestling when I was a 14 year old boy. I live in Belgium and the only way to see wrestling was through a television show on Eurosport consisting of outtakes from different events.
If we were lucky, we had a clip from a big event like Wrestlemania, but no Survivor Series or Royal Rumbles. (Very frustrating because they broadcasted the promo's for these events).
And at that moment I truly believed in my 'hero's' like The Undertaker J.
After 2 years, Eurosport ended the broadcasting and there was no way to enjoy wrestling any more.
Now I am almost 32, and I have rediscovered wrestling through the dvd's from Silver Vision for a little more then a year now. And to be quiet frankly I was a little chocked to find out that almost everything in the WWE is staged. I was aware that the wrestlers were not fighting full force, but still (This maybe seems a little na´ve and silly for you guys).
In spite of this, my love for this 'sport' grew again by every dvd I saw (And finally I could watch a Royal Rumble Match) and I became also more curious about the industry.
So I wandered the internet to find out what the real deal was.
I learned about terms like 'shoot' and 'kayfabe', I read about famous storylines, discovered WCW and ECW, the difference between RAW and SmackDown! ...
And now that I know that "wrestling is fake", I love it even more, and with that love, my respect for the business and his superstars has grown.
When friends come over and they see my extensive collection of wrestling dvd's, I get the same reactions:
"You do know that they aren't fighting for real"", "They don't hit each other" and the famous "It is all fake".
Then I put in a dvd, and I show them the match "Hell in a Cell: Undertaker vs. Mankind".
When Undertaker throw Mankind of the cage through the announce table, I answer "Yeah, I know, it's fake".
Then Undertaker smash Mankind through the cage ... "You guys are right, they don't hit each other for real"
At that moment some friends have already shouted several times "Ooh my god"
And at the end of the match, they apologize ... and some of them ask me if they can borrow a dvd ...
Last month, they revealed a statue for Bruce Lee in Mostar (Bosnia) and thousands of fans enjoying Jackie Chan and Jet Li movies ... and you can also say about them "It's fake, it's just a movie".
Like the superstars of wrestling, they are the superstars of martial art.
They don't fake, they use their skills to perform a great fight ... for the people who can enjoy their skills
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