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1.23.2010

"Do You Remember . . .?"

"If I dropped dead tonight, the boss wouldn't even close the store tomorrow," a co-worker told me a few nights ago.

Always looking to make parallels to professional wrestling, I said, "Do you remember when Owen Hart died at a wrestling event? The boss didn't cancel that show, or the show after."

I'm not sure if this made him feel any better. At least, not initially.

Five minutes later he asked, "Do you remember Bret 'The Hitman' Hart?"

I nodded.

"Jake 'The Snake' Roberts?"

Clearly, fond memories of pro wrestling were triggered when I had mentioned the "King of Harts."

And so began an hour of reminiscing about the good ol' days, taking turns naming our favourite wrestlers from back in the day.

"Ricky 'The Dragon' Steamboat," I added.

"'Macho Man' Randy Savage," he countered.

"Hulk Hogan." (I know, I know . . . an easy one. But I was just warming up.)

"Andre The Giant."

"King Kong Bundy."

"Jimmy 'The Superfly' Snuka."

"'Rowdy' Roddy Piper."

"'Ravishing' Rick Rude."

"Mr. Perfect."

"'Million Dollar Man' Ted Dibiase."

"Sgt. Slaughter."

"Koko B. Ware." (I didn't tell him that I thought Koko sucked. I wanted to keep reminiscing.)

"Bobby 'The Brain' Heenan."

"Yokozuna."

"The Undertaker."

"The Ultimate Warrior."

"Waylon Mercy." (Just kidding. Making sure you're still paying attention.)

After exhausting our list (I even threw in Corporal Kirchner to blow his mind), my friend told me that he didn't have cable growing up at his parents' house. So every time he visited his Grandma -- who had cable -- he watched wrestling. He loved it.

"I don't watch it that much anymore, though," he added. "Too much soap opera."

What could I tell him? I suppose I could have told him that Bret Hart is back on "Raw" now, or that Hogan is in TNA. Perhaps he would have been intrigued - or perhaps he would have laughed, wondering why two plus-50s were still kicking around.

"Yeah" was all I could muster.

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Every so often, I have these reminiscing moments with "closet" wrestling fans. It usually comes about when I tell someone that I'm a pro wrestling fan; inevitably, he'll ask me that wonderful "Do you remember . . .?" question.

My favourite reminiscing moment happened back in high school, in the middle of my Gr. 11 Media studies class. I don't recall how it started, but soon enough, my teacher and I were exchanging old names while the rest of the class sat and listened. The next day, we had a lesson on pro wrestling. (How convenient that we were doing the TV unit?) My teacher asked me to bring in some old tapes and talk about the differences between newer and older wrestling. Needless to say, it was the best class ever.

Will the younger fans of today reminisce like this 10 years from now? 20 years from now?

Will they ask . . .

"Do you remember John Cena?" ( I could see that happening.)

"Do you remember DX?" (I could see that happening too. Although they probably won't remember the non-midget version.)

"Do you remember The Miz?" (Ha!)

"Do you remember Kofi Kingston?" (Maybe.)

What I do know is that anytime someone asks me if I remember Owen Hart, or Jake Roberts, or Randy Savage, or Ricky Steamboat . . . I will happily answer, "Yes. Yes I do."


2 comments: on ""Do You Remember . . .?""

D. Ross said...

Damn, this was a good article, Andrew. I was just asking where you were. Those "Do you remember?" conversations are fun and/or depressing. People who don't watch anymore will mention so many guys and they are either dead or fucked up on drugs. I'll mention that and they get shocked. If my late brother were alive he would've lost his mind over Benoit.

I chatted with this co-worker of my friends about Piper for almost 20 minutes after he tried to out-mark me. I was naming Piper's career and the fact his kid is in MMA. Funny, for those that don't watch these guys don't age.

"Piper has a kid?!"

Good one and please start posting more often.

Andrew Gray said...

Thanks, dude. It's true -- there's always a depressing aspect to any reminiscing since so many of them are dead or in really bad shape.