“My color was wrong. You were offended by the way that I talked. Because I wasn’t raised in a certain place, the type of music I listen to offended you. This one’s a great one. Hustle. Loyalty and Respect. Hot garbage as you said? So apprantely, the Rock had a problem with my moral code, and here is the kicker. This one suprised even me - my audience is kids. It is, Rock and I’m damn proud of it. I’m damn proud of who I am and I’m damn proud of what I’ve become. Now, if you’ve have a legitimate gripe about me not working my tail to the bone to further this business, then we got something to talk about. If not my friend, who in the hell are you? Who in the hell are you to judge me? Who in the hell are you to say I can or can’t wear a certain color? Talk a certain way, listen to a certain kind of music, chastise the way I live my life or God forbid - the age of the people that watch this product that I love. If that what it takes to be on team Bring It, Rock - you can keep your application, I don’t want it. You see, every single week I walk down this ramp as myself. And there are some people that like it, and as you heard tonight, there are some people who don’t. You know what I don’t do? I don’t try to change their mind because I’m in no position to judge anyone. When this is all said and done, oh I’m gonna be judged. But I got news for you great one - I aint gonna be judged by YOU.”—
So, I made a video about this on Youtube a while back. But I guess I’ll go into further detail on here, if that’s even possible. It’s just that.. I feel like you guys are my best friends, since I don’t have anyone to share my wrestling stories with - so yeah.
Even if you have been watching wrestling for 30 years, there is always someone who has been watching longer.
I love reading stories like this :’) I wish I could hear about everyone’s initiation into wrasslin’. Mine was when I was 6 years old; the Attitude Era was in full force and my brother (like every other teenage boy at the time) was a huge wrestling fan. I used to watch it with him in a subtle attempt to make him think I was cool (not sure how well it worked). He inevitably grew out of his interest in the product when wrestling stopped being popular, but somehow I’m still here.
My interest has undoubtably wavered since I was 6 years old and thought gimmicks were real. I stopped following the product for a few years as a teenager because I thought I was too intelligent to be watching something so hokey, and didn’t recognise the error of my ways until the build up for WrestleMania 24, just like you. I started watching again casually and if anyone had told me that I would still be here 4 years later, blogging about it and spending absurd amounts of money on tickets, PPVs and merchandise, there is no way I would have believed you. But life is kinda silly like that, I guess.
I don’t think it’s relevant how long a person has been watching. The strength of their fandom should be dependent on how passionate they are about the current product and the art form itself. And you, m’lady, are one of the most passionate I’ve ever seen <3
AND DRINKING BEER FROM MY CM PUNK GLASS PAHAHABABASHA.
A lot of the times I go out for a few too many beverages I go in my CM Punk shirt just to be a dick.
Oh my god. I feel like I should buy a Punk shirt just so I can start doing this. You guys are main event heels and I will forever be stuck in the midcard. The closest I have ever come to winning the title is drinking alone in my room while my Punk action figure judges me silently.
…Fair to Flair Quarterly will not be a magazine in the traditional vein. It will include stories on current wrestling, groundbreaking journalism, and topical analysis. But we will curate it in a way that you can pick up an issue three years after its initial publication and enjoy it from cover to cover. This publication will last because of a single fact: we have a deep, complicated love for this art, and the words printed in its volume will be from the heart.
More than anything, we want Fair to Flair Quarterly to be a collection of feelings. What about wrestling makes you jump, cry, or yearn? What about it makes you sick, lonely, or welcome? What about wrestling breaks your heart, or makes you fall in love with the world? We want to hear from you in whatever publishable capacity you’d like to communicate…
When Fair to Flair was first announced, the suggestion of a Quarterly publication was the most exciting to me. I’m so glad details have been drawn up. I would happily subscribe for the whole year if that were an option (rereading the post, it appears that actually is an option haha. EXCITEMENT). Congratulations for finally making your dream come true, Sawyer. And well done to the rest of the boys for helping you get there. The idea that in the near future I could be sitting on the bus on my way to uni, reading from a hard-copy, referenced, well-written book about wrestling blows my mind. And the idea that if I worked hard enough, I could one day contribute to such a book is even more mind blowing.
I’m reblogging so as many people read about this as possible. This is the start of something big, and I’m glad I was here to see it begin :’)
This is a topic I’ve been ruminating on for a long time, but this week Stephen T. Stone of Grapple Kingdom asked me for some advice about his writing style, and the topic again came up: what kind of language pattern is best to describe pro wrestling? The typical pattern is generally agreed that carny insider terms (blading, faces, heels, shoots, angles, etc) are acceptable and largely understood by wrestling fans.
I’m sure I’ve done it unintentionally (it’s really hard to unlearn a language pattern), but I try my best to not use these terms on my blog. Instead, I lift from theatrical language patterns (bleeding, good guys, bad guys, breaking character, stories/narratives, etc). I do this for two reasons: First, I believe wrestling is a vast and misunderstood art form, and by using theatrical language patterns instead of carny ones, I believe I’m helping illustrate that argument. Secondly, I think theatrical language is far superior, expresses more, and is easier to read by anyone other than hardcore wrestling fans… (Read More)
Ah, I had forgotten how much I missed the quality of the discussions on Tumblr while I was taking a semi-hiatus from it.
This was a very interesting read. I’m definitely guilty of using Carny when I speak/write about wrestling, but it’s not something I do intentionally. It just comes out (even in every day conversation sometimes, which is awkward to say the least).
I support the idea of a language shift. It’s one of those subtle changes that could go a long way in redefining the way the public views wrestling and it’s fans. Insider language is exactly what the name implies: language used by people already inside a particular ‘community’, used for the primary purpose of keeping other people out.
I’m just not sure why, in a day and age where we want wrestling to be viewed in a much higher esteem, we would want to be keeping anyone else out.
The reply box is too small. So here is my response to some of the points you brought up (which I haven't ranted about before. Or whatever I have an opinion on. OH WHATEVS)
The men photoshoot thing - I don't know. While equality is a nice thing, I think the WWE has an "ulterior" motive when it comes to this sort of thing. It knows it's (at least teenage) audience is most likely going to be alienated for what they like, and as such it would be difficult for them to get into any sort of relationship with someone. So what do they do? Give those poor sods pictures of HAWT CHICKZ to fap over. (It also warps their (the male audience) perception of what a woman should be, but that's a different thing entirely) I think WWE thinks that, while the female (again, teenage) audience may be alienated for the same reason, that they may still be able to get into a decent relationship with someone (tits are powerful) and therefore can satisfy their own sexual needs. In this instance, at least in my opinion, the WWE is treating the female fans as "more capable" or "intelligent". Either that or they still think 99.9% of the crowd is male and the girly screams in the crowd are boys who haven't hit puberty yet.
2. I wouldn't say Kelly Kelly is the "face" of the WWE women's division. She's never been champion before, and I haven't heard of many instances in which she did some PR work for the WWE. That usually falls on Eve. I've ranted about this before so I won't get into it that much.
3. Blame the attitude era for everything else (except the racism which existed WAY before). It's what I do. Athletic/strong women swapped out for hot models, pushes for the majority put on the back burner, smark fans. All of it is the fault of the Attitude Era. Except Steroids. Blame that on the culture that formed around wrestling when it first began.
I really just wanted to use that picture again ;)
You make some very good points. I like the possibility that WWE are actually giving us ladies credit haha, but I still don’t think any of us would be complaining if they uploaded more high quality pictures of Punk in his ring gear. Or maybe that’s just me…
As for Kelly, when I say that she is the face of the division, I don’t really mean to the extent that someone like Cena is for the men. That idea mostly developed when I read a definitely-true-and-not-at-all-fabricated story reported on the dirt sheets a little while ago about Kelly being Vince’s favourite Diva. That, and because she’s the number one face they go to when a heel needs someone to work with, because she’s involved in an important multi-layered feud, and because she’s on almost every piece of Diva related memorabilia that WWE produces.
Also, “Blame the Attitude Era” needs to go on a t shirt.
how do you know that eve supports feminist causes? i've never heard that...
Shh. I read it somewhere a long time ago but can’t remember where, hence why I brushed over it so quickly and chose not to reference ;) Don’t doubt my journalistic integrity, anon.
Everything I said about Eve was true. She’s very smart (graduated her Engineering degree with honours), athletic (she’s, you know, a wrestler) and if you Google for long enough, I’m sure you will come across the occasional articles about her charity work, volunteering to teach women’s self defence, motivational speaking, etc.
An unnecessarily long-winded post about female wrestling fans, the women's division, and how I learned to embrace where the two stand.
It’s hard to be a female wrestling fan.
We not only have to deal with the obligatory "You know it’s fake, right?", but we also get bombarded with the always-difficult-to-respond-to “How can you watch something so degrading towards your gender?”. And honestly, the latter is much harder to defend because the issue stems from a moral high ground rather than a simple suspension of disbelief.
My brother’s ex-girlfriend was the biggest instigator of my wrestling fuelled guilt. Every time I tried to watch an episode of Raw, she’d coincidentally walk into the same room and make endless comments about how “it’s so racist and sexist”. I’d half-heartedly tell her that people make wrestling out to be far worse than it actually is, but then two minutes later Cryme Tyme would come out, steal a car, and just generally act “black” while Eve danced half-naked behind them for no reason. Sometimes WWE makes it very hard to stand up for them.
I know that nothing I say about the inclusion of female wrestling fans in the industry (particularly in the WWE) is going to be innovative or new, especially at a time where the issue isn’t half as big or severe as what it was just two or three years ago. We all know that the company has progressed enormously since the induction of the PG era, but we also realise that Vince doesn’t care all that much about us. It’s been said a million times before, but it’s something that has been bothering me a lot more than usual over the past week. We are a demographic that has always been overlooked, which is something I cannot fathom, given how many of us there really are. I think something like 40% of the television audience during Raw on Monday nights is made up of women, but have we ever been actually catered to?
It would be so easy to rectify this simply by working on the women’s division alone. Girls like to see other girls wrestle. It’s more than just entertaining; it’s inspiring. We like seeing other women with the same passion that we do, being able to make it in a male-dominated business. And it’s soul-crushing when people like Kelly Kelly become the face of the division for nothing more than having a good body. I honestly don’t think it would hurt the company at all to focus more on their wrestling ability than their sex appeal. I can’t speak for the men watching, but I know enough of them to make an educated guess that they wouldn’t be opposed to seeing good mainstream women’s wrestling over the Bella Twins standing around, courting Guest Hosts every week (feel free to prove me wrong on that one, guys). You can still keep the good looking women around, that’s fine. There are a few people on here who bag Maryse at every chance they get, and as someone who cringes a little bit every time I see her terrible hair extensions and patchy fake tan, I can see where they are coming from. I can see it, but I can’t agree with it, because she has a character. She might have terrible hair and a patchy tan, but that isn’t where her characterisation ends. She has those things because she is self- and image- obsessed, snobby and driven for perfection. She is feisty, spoiled, and unlike most women portrayed in WWE, she isn’t willing to be pushed around by a man. She fought back when Ted DiBiase treated her poorly, and as Sawyer wrote on Footnotes of Wrestling, that is something we hadn’t seen before. That is what we need more of. We need story lines and complex characters and faces who do more than just smile, wave and dance to the ring. You can still keep the online photo galleries and the calendars and the revealing ring gear. Good wrestling and sexuality don’t have to be mutually exclusive. You just have to be willing to let the women show that their sexuality isn’t their only dimension.
Speaking of which, it was discussed a while back on Tumblr that there should be photo sets for the male wrestlers uploaded on WWE.com as well. I wish I could remember who came up with this idea, because I support it completely. It’s so simple, but would do wonders to achieve two very important things: 1. acknowledge that there actually is a strong female fan base, and 2. create a sense of equality between the male and the female workers. If Wrestling Confessions has shown us anything at all, it’s that female wrestling fans are horny. The 18 - 25 year old male demographic aren’t the only ones who like seeing photos of attractive people. Make it less of a “woman thing” and more of a “wrestler thing”. It can’t possibly hurt Randy Orton or Wade Barrett to stand in front of a camera looking menacing/happy/bored/whatever for half an hour before a show, but it would subconsciously make the female fans feel more involved and more considered by a company that relies on their money to function.
I’ve been neglecting my blog and my interest in wrestling since the university year in Australia started again, and I was kind of okay with that until one of my lecturers spoke for a good 15 minutes last Thursday about how much she hates pro-wrestling for the “terrible things it has done for the female gender”. Her points, while ultimately not untrue, offended me more than I thought they would, and made me realise how passionate I am about this art. I am an intelligent woman who is studying full time, has faceted interests and experiences, and also appreciates the Art of Wrestling. And I am proud of it. Sometimes (like right now) it bothers me that mainstream wrestling companies don’t treat their women as seriously as they treat their men. It’s frustrating because the small things are remembered far more often than the big things. I can go through Tumblr after any episode of Smackdown and see a dozen posts (at least) about how Kelly receiving more television time than Beth Phoenix is a disgrace, but I am very hard pressed to come across a post about how Kelly being included in a main-event feud has added a very much needed second dimension to her character. People made a far bigger deal about the degrading comments made by Laycool towards Mickie James during their feud than they did for the much more recent (and absolutely fantastic) Tables match they had with Natalya and Beth. Someone like Eve, who is smart, athletic and committed to several feminist causes, has her credibility cut in half by fans because she is referred to as a “Diva” rather than a “woman”. People complained far more about how someone as inexperienced in the ring as Kaitlyn could win a rigged, online-only TV show than they did praise the emphasis placed on the stellar match that was the true highlight of NXT 3 between Naomi and AJ. I could go on and on forever.
Women’s History Month is almost over, and I think it’s time that wrestling fans start embracing the highs of women’s wrestling instead of the lows. You can complain about Michael Cole interrupting the Diva’s match on Raw until his name trends on Twitter and the higher-ups at WWE think that it is a reflection of his overness (and can then act accordingly by giving him more screen time and the women less), or you can post about how impressed you were by Eve and Nikki’s efforts to make the remainder of said match something memorable. If we were as loud about the things we love than we are about things we hate, WWE just might get the idea that we are taking their women seriously, and that maybe they should too.
I agree that was wonderful but no, sorry, not a fantastic episode.
Them’s fightin’ words!
I really enjoyed it. It wasn’t the greatest, but I can’t think of anything offensive or outright terrible. Even the low moments were still fun to watch, at least (Brian’s dancing, etc.)
Rocky’s promo was silly but good, everything the Miz did was brilliant, Bryan vs. Sheamus was solid, the Cole/Lawler stuff eventually picked up, Snooki was entertaining. It felt like a great build up show for Mania to me.