Today and this weekend should be the highlight of my year. In my life escapism is probably the thing I value the most, it’s just my way of coping. With what you may ask? Well, anything really, I think everyone needs it. Some people watch football, some do drugs, some drink, whatever floats your boat and whatever you do to forget about… life… for a short while… me? I watch men and women get in a ring and wrestle, with all of them living out larger than life characters and all involved knowing how the “fight” was going to go before they even start… that’s what I like to watch to escape.
But… but… ITS FAKE!!! Yeah and so is game of thrones, so is all the films you watch. What’s your point? I love pro wrestling exactly for that reason because the possibilities are so endless, and it allows for people to combine real life stories and showcase them in a fantasy world. My god more than ever we could all do with that right now.
Today, probably right now in fact I should be at Leicester train station, packed for a weekend away with friends where I will eat lots of food, drink lots of drink and watch lots and lots of professional wrestling. NXT TakeOver: Tampa Bay tonight and then WrestleMania 36 tomorrow night… but… the world had other ideas… but as much as people may want to criticise WWE for putting on this show (and this is not a total endorsement of anything they or anyone else have done with regards to events during this pandemic)… regardless WrestleMania 36 IS happening. Tonight and tomorrow night. In front of zero fans. BUT… WrestleMania IS happening. And I for one could not be more grateful.
In my life and in recent times I’ve had… shall we say… stuff… go on, some of you reading this will know all about it, some of you will know bits and some of you will be wondering what the fuck I’m out about. I’m sure we all have our fair share of stuff go on in our lives, some more good than bad and some far worse than others, and I’m sure many many far worse than me. But over the last few months in particular I’ve done a lot of stuff and had a lot go on. But two things I’ve done a lot where one makes up for the other. I’ve cried a lot, but I’ve watched A LOT of professional wrestling.
Wrestling is always that constant for me. It’s always there. If I wanna be made to laugh I can put on a comedy match or a funny segment, if I wanna learn I put on Bret Hart and Steve Austin talking for an hour, if I wanna see the most beautiful example of storytelling I put on Shawn Michaels ending the WWE in-ring career of his hero and friend Ric Flair. Whatever I need wrestling is there. I don’t smoke, I don’t do drugs, I watch wrestling. That’s what I do. Without a select number of people (you all know who you are) and without professional wrestling I… I don’t even know. But I cast my mind back over the last few months and think of important moments. January was a bit of a stinker for me… but I had the Royal Rumble PPV… October was really tough, then The Fiend won the universal title… I had my heart broken in February… then I had NXT TakeOver: Portland…
And now… now I’ve been essentially bound to one place for over two weeks now… and the whole world around us is on its knees. But tonight, and tomorrow night I… WE have WrestleMania 36. And yes sure we would have ALL preferred to see Drew McIntyre, a man I saw in a fucking sports hall wrestle in 2017, take on the WWE Champion Brock Lesnar in front of thousands… sure I’d have wanted to see The Fiend take on John Cena, The Undertaker face AJ Styles, Edge take on Randy Orton in a huge stadium, and be with my friends watching it all happen. But the last time I watched a WrestleMania in the very room I am writing this now was WrestleMania 33… for many reasons my favourite wrestling event of all time. During the course of that show I felt every single emotion I felt as a wrestling fan; I was excited beyond belief when The Hardys returned, I was furious when Bray Wyatt lost the WWE title, I cried when it looked as if my hero The Undertaker had taken his last ride in WWE. But what else did I do during that show? I escaped. For those hours I thought about nothing else. Not that my life was particularly bad back then, nor did I have anything in particular on my mind, but regardless it’s never a bad thing I feel for me certainly nor for anyone else, to just escape for a bit.
Now, here we are on the eve of WrestleMania 36. And now? Well sure I’ve got personal things in my mind that I could still do with a break from. But I think we all could do with a break from the worries we all face right now. So once again for me personally just when I really really need it, Wrestling is there. WrestleMania is here.
And sure this week I haven’t felt in the least bit excited for it, usually I’d be watching all the old mania shows on the network and listening to all the podcasts and watching all the preview videos. And we in our WWE Talk chat would be doing our predictions and what horrific forfeits we could have to do. But, that’s not the case. But once again, whatever you or I think of this show happening as it will, wrestling has proven to me once again that it’s always there. Just when I need it.
It’s WrestleMania 36! And I couldn’t be happier about it.