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WRESTLING COLUMNS

Thoughts of An Enforcer (1st Edition)
February 11, 2003 - by "Enforcer" Steve Anderson

G reetings and salutations my dear wrestling fans and allow me to be the first to welcome you to what is the first of what will be many articles written here presented to you here at OWW. Since this is my first column, allow me to dispense with the plesantries as I introduce myself to each and everyone of you whom will be looking into the mind of an Enforcer but beware for those whom have looked into my mind have not yet found their way out. So when looking inside my mind, don't go it alone. Let's read here shall we?

Before I continue with todays column, I say with a heavy heart and deep sorrow that the world of professional wrestling is mourning the loss of Curt Henning whom many will remember as "Mr. Perfect". Born March 28th, 1958 to professional wrestling legend Larry "The Axe" Hennig, Curt Hennig was without any shadow of a doubt, one of the very best that this great sport had to offer. For those whom have been fans of professional wrestling will remember the legacy of Curt Hennig through his memorable fueds he had with the late great Kerry "Texas Tornado" Von Erich and Bret "The Hitman" Hart while wrestling with the World Wrestling Federation. To many whom are in this business today along with myself, he served to many as an inspiration for those who wanted to always follow their dreams of becoming a professional wrestler. I say with a deep heart that I will miss one of professional wrestlings greatest legends grace the ring. To his family and closest friends whom have known him through the years, I bid to you my deepest condolences and I wish to those who were touched by this mans skills Godspeed for that it will be a long time until we see that kind of talent and no one can do it like he had done.

Now that I've gotten that out of the way, allow me to introduce myself to all of you. My name is "Enforcer" Steve Anderson. I've been a professional wrestler for three years working on the independent circuit in the United States of America. Before enlisting in the United States Armed Forces in October of 1996, in the month of May of 1996 I was trained by AWA Legend "Lifeguard" Sonny Rogers in Chicago, IL and I have none other than "The New Age Lumberjacks" to thank for that. Thanks Mike and Jerry. I love ya's. Upon returning home to Illinois to my last duty station, In January of 2000 I had trained with another AWA Legend by the name of Tony Leone who has competed in just about every single professional wrestling organization known to man in this world and his experience in professional wrestling both inside and outside of the ring is priceless. To both these men, I have nothing but the utmost respect for what they've accomplished. During the time that I've had the honor of being a professional wrestler, I've worked in many hole in the wall venues from VFW and American Legion halls, bowling alleys, bars, birthday parties, barmitzhvahs, festivals, and gymnasiums. I've wrestled where there have been hundreds of people and I've wrestled where there have been only few people. No matter the size of the crowd, the butterflies in my stomach are always the very same.

Now that I've dispensed the common plesantries, I will proceed with this months column. There has been something that has been eating at me for quite the longest time now. I'd just like to say that if you're my brother or sister that you will hopefully enjoy this. It's time that we discuss the so-called "Hit T.V. Show" called "Tough Enough" on MTV. I know what you're saying. You're asking me, "What's your problem with the show?" Well how about you sit back and just read what I have to say and just shut the hell up. For three seasons, we've been put through the agony of viewing millions of people who think that they have what it takes to be in the WWE and because of that, WWE ask for these people to send in VHS videos wanting to know what makes them "Tough Enough". Many who sit at home find watching those videos to be a larf when it's just a disgrace. Provided that these people make the cut, they're asked to attend the semi-finals which WWE and MTV staff will ask the question, "Why do you think you belong in the WWE?" They rant and rave talking like a bunch of Pre-School Special Education rejects quoting catch phrases from "The Rock" saying, "Because I am truly electrifying", or they simply just blow more shit out of their mouths than they do from their assholes and to be just perfectly honest, it makes me sick to my damn stomach. The funniest part of it all is that they never answer the question, "Why do you think you belong in the WWE?"

After the judges make their decision, we see what is called "The Final Thirteen" which will determine who will go on to be a "contestant" in the show. From there, they are taken to there "Home Away From Home" which consist of an elaborate home with all the luxuries. The next day, they go to a WWE facility to work out where the world watches them bump. What I find funny is that when these kids take a bump, they get ready to cry like bitches. After what they consider to be a physical day, they head home to jump in the jacuzzi. Most of them call home telling their friends and family that it wasn't what they expected. When they go to cry about it to the trainers telling them, "I don't know if I can do this!" the WWE sends them off on a vacation away from training and allows them to get loose.

The reality of it all is that professional wrestling is not a contest. It is a business period! In this business, nothing is given to you on a silver platter and respect is not given. You must earn opportunities and you must earn respect with others whom have been in this business before you. It is called "Paying Your Dues". This is a very common thing. However with todays society, one would think that is nothing more than old fashioned. To become a professional wrestler, one must attend what is called a "Wrestling School". Now for those of you who are looking to be professional wrestlers, I've got some news. There is no such thing as fame, fortune, glory, or even for that matter, there is no money!

There is something else that I would like to ask everyone here that could answer this. What have any of these people in "Tough Enough" done to deserve a contract with WWE? I can answer that question as I'll say that they've done absolutely nothing to deserve it. While many train all of their adult lives to live this dream that isn't meant for everyone, these kids only spend nine weeks inside of the squared circle training for this, and if you cannot train an employee at McDonalds to be a fry-cook in nine weeks, then how can you teach someone in nine weeks how to become a professional wrestler. The one thing that I believe bothers me the most is the fact that the trainers fail to teach the kids about the most important lesson in this business, and that lesson is respect. As we seen on TE3, there was a contestant by the name of Jonah who had sustain an injury while training. Upon learning that he would still be able to continue in the show, he had informed one of the WWE staff about a "rib" that he wanted to play on his colleagues that was tasteless. Upon witnessing this supposed "rib", I felt that I had been slapped in the face along with everyone else in this business who has been hurt in the ring, injured, crippled, and for that matter, those whom have died in the ring while performing. I was very pissed off. What does he do? He laughs as if it he was "Superman" and we all know that even "Superman" was never invicible as he now confined to a wheelchair for as long as he lives.

Let me briefly explain what we as wrestlers go through in order to achieve our dream. First of all, we wake up every morning to go to our job because as I mentioned before, in the world of professional wrestling there is no such thing as money. In the three years that I've been a professional wrestler, I have not seen the money I invested in my training from years ago. If that doesn't tell you what I'm talking about, then I don't know what it will take to get it through your thick skulls. With the schedule from our jobs so we can pay the bills, we take time in our busy schedules to work out so our bodies can prepare to endure the pain that we face everytime we take a bump inside of the ring.

Now let me explain what a professional wrestler in training goes through to be a wrestler. It doesn't matter who trains you because for everyone, it is basically the same story. When you sign a training contract that states that you want to be a professional wrestler, the trainers are going to do everything in their power to pound the living shit out of you. They are going to test your will and see just how damn bad you want to be a wrestler. We pay the price for this dream, and not with money, but the blood from our wounds, the sweat of determination which shows how much we want this, and the tears of humble humiliation and pain that we endure all so we can call ourselves a wrestler. We are put to the test to see where our heart lies in this business because there are many who get into this business for all the wrong reasons, and those being the things that I mentioned that did not exsist out here. If you don't have the heart and desire for wanting to be a professional wrestler, then you're definitely in the wrong line of work. We have earned a little something in this business that is not handed to anyone of us. That little thing which actually means so much to many of us is called respect.

That is something the "contestants" of "Tough Enough" lack in this business and it is also something that they will never have from anyone in this business who has taken the road less traveled to fulfill their dreams and goals in this business. Professional wrestlers like Ox Harley, Adam Pearce, Franky Kazarian, Danny Dominion, Ace Steel, Mercedes, and what is a countless list that could go on forever deserve to have the very same opportunity that the WWE is choosing to waste on a bunch of assholes who don't deserve this business. It seems that with each season, hard work and dedication just don't mean shit anymore!

With that off of my chest, I'd like to open this column up for discussion. You can e-mail your thoughts to Ask The Enforcer@aol.com where I will personally answer to all e-mails.

Before I go, I just tuned into the Travel Channel where they're focusing on "School of Hard Knocks" which is owned and operated by Jesse Hernandez and what I just saw has literally pissed me off. My column for next month will be about how the fans know too much about this business and when do you know just "Too Much"? Folks, I'm not going to come out here and bullshit you but I do believe in the old school and I'm not going to throw it out the fucking window because everyone else thinks they can. KAYFABE!


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