Feedback Feedbag–02.24.2002

You can just call Canada the Price Club Country, because when we open a can of whoop-ass, it’s INDUSTRIAL SIZED! Two gold-medal games against the US, two wins.
And now, to the reader mail, most of which is from the US and thus would lose an important hockey game to Canadian reader mail.  (I was feeling a bit patriotic that night, I see.)  Joseph Gill asks…
Which year was it when the Summerslam logo fell down and Mene Gene yelled “F It”?
That would be 1989, a year in which another Canadian team triumphed, this time in the Stanley Cup finals, as Calgary won for the first and only time.  An AOL user asks…
Me: Mr. McMahon, how many ref bumps does it take to get to the Championship
center of a Pay-Per-View?
Mr. McMahon: I never made it without biting, ask Mr. Keith.
Me: Mr, Keith, how many ref bumps does it take to get to the Championship
center of a Pay-Per-View?

Scientific studies have shown that the optimal number is 2 — one is regarded as lazy, and three is just silly. By a staggering coincidence, “2” is also the number of times that Canada beat the US for Olympic gold medals in hockey this year. How about that. Jeff Osmond asks…
Hi there. Hate to bother you again but I have a few questions that you might a have an answer for. Recently I started at the very beginning of my videotape collection. A few days ago I was watching an old Saturday Night’s Main Event from nov ’88. The Ultimate Warrior defeated a man known as the Super Ninja. Who was this guy? Second question : On the same tape was the last televised match for The British Bulldogs as they lost a title match to Demolition from the Maple Leaf Gardens. Why did they leave the WWF and go back to Stampede Wrestling? Third question : Near the end of the tape was some matches from Pro Wrestling Plus with matches from WWC, FCW, PNW, CWA, CWF and more. What did you think of that show? Do you think it would be a better idea today that instead of trying to come up with the next big wrestling promotion someone should put together a show featuring indy wrestling matches like PWP did? Imagine watching a show where we could see a matches from OVW, HWA, ECWA , APW, Japan, Mexico and others. Granted these matches would probably be joined in progress to the last 4 minutes like PWP did but it would fans a chance to new faces in different areas. What do you think?
In order…
1) Super Ninja was Portland semi-legend Rip Oliver.
2) Dynamite gives the whole story in his book, but basically the Bulldogs got tired of the lack of freedom and left to do their own thing.
3) I always preferred the superior Pro Wrestling This Week to Pro Wrestling Plus, but more to the point the troubles with getting rights to most of that stuff on a timely basis wouldn’t be worth it for either side.  (Some indy groups could do a hell of a show like that on YouTube or Netflix, man.   I’d watch the shit out of a “Best of Japan and Indies” weekly compilation.)  Nick Haskell gets right to the point with this bit of feedback from Smackdown…
fag
Yeah, well, at least my hockey teams didn’t go 0-2 against Canada in the gold medal games.  (HIGH FIVE!)  Robert Riordan writes…
Look, I don’t agree with everything wwf does either, but I am a fan. It appears you are not. I understand that you get off by stirring up attention from inflammatory remarks, but quite frankly, this is a site for wrestling FANS. If you are so disgusted with wrestling there is a simple solution….change….the…channel. Only you could find a way to criticize such an incredible RAW. We know it’s scripted yet you complain because its not realistic enough. Don’t you get it? None of it is realistic. You might as well complain that the punches and kicks don’t look real enough. Oh, but then you’d cry about the shots being too stiff. What would happen in your bitter little world if there was a show that actually met up to your standards 100%. I guess you’d have to switch over to ice skating to find something to bitch. moan and whine about. Envy creates haters. Ah well, I am just as foolish for wasting my time writing to you. I guess all I can say is…hate on brother, hate on!
For this, I turn to Roger Ebert’s Answer Man column to handle the question of why a critic would hang in with bad product…
Q. Does watching so many movies and having to critique them take the pleasure and escapism of the moviegoing experience away from you? Or does it make you appreciate it more when a good movie finally comes out?
Lanford Beard, Birmingham, Ala.
A. Some critics, like my hero Dwight Macdonald, finally tired of the dreck and retired from reviewing. When I first got my job I thought five years was about as long as anyone could do it. But I have never tired of going to the movies, and even in a bad one you can see people trying and failing, which can be almost as interesting as seeing them trying and succeeding. When a truly great movie comes along, it cheers me up for weeks.

I couldn’t say it any better.  Tom Harmon offers this conspiracy theory as to the nWo’s buffoonery on Smackdown…
“By the way, whereas some balance onto the babyface side is good, it’s generally not a good idea to make your new monster heels look like total buffoons three days after their debut when you’re basing entire shows around them. Just a thought.”  (This is what I had wrote about the nWo on Smackdown)
It’s probably been said before, but after losing a gajillion-trillion on the XFL, what’s losing a paltry several million to humiliate three men who either a) tried ratting you out to the feds, b) killed your ratings by putting themselves over as main event stars, and c) went over to your competitor and teased marks by making them think YOUR company was invading? Vince knows that HoHaNa are worthless in the ring and only draw cheap nostalgia heat that can easily be turned to apathy with the (im)proper booking. On top of that, he knows there’s no long-term value in any of these three guys. The only logical explanation is that it’s a sick pleasure for him to fuck them over book-wise at every turn.
It’s unfair the way Vince jobs out Booker every chance he gets as a “fuck you” to Ted Turner, but in the NWO’s case, at least it’s good and personal. Whaddya wanna bet that Vinnie Mac’s got Pat Patterson running cases of Smirnoff to Hall’s hotel? It’s not sound business, but good old fashioned vengeance has no price tag.

Sure, but what about the millions he can make from Hogan’s face-turn, brother? Okay, maybe not. And the last word this week goes to Bryan Middlebrook, who has a song for us all…
The Mark Song
(Thanks to Baz Luhrman)
Ladies and gentlemen of the Internet: Enjoy wrestling.
If I could offer you only one tip for the future, enjoying pro-wrestling would be it. The long term benefits of having fun with sports entertainment have been proven by our own awe-filled childhoods, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own limited pro-wrestling knowledge. I will give this advice now.
Enjoy the charisma and athleticism of the wrestlers. Oh, never mind. You will not understand their power and glory until they’ve faded. But trust me, in 20 years, you’ll look back at photos of Austin and Rock and recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before them and how fabulous they really were.
Undertaker is not as fat as you imagine.
Don’t worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to convince Vince McMahon that we’re not a bunch of crazy nerds. The real troubles in wrestling are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blind side you when drugs and accidents rob us of our heroes.
Watch one match every day that scares you.
Wash.
Don’t be reckless with your words. Don’t put up with people who are reckless with theirs.
Cheer.
Don’t waste your time on jealousy. No, you’ll never be able to give the bad guy a Frankensteiner. The race is long and, in the end, it’s only with Jeff Hardy.
Remember compliments you give. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell Vince Russo.
Keep your old Raws and Nitros. Throw away your old Wrestling With Shadows.
Attend.
Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what to do now that there’s only one company. The most interesting people I know didn’t know what to watch at 22. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don’t know what to watch.
Get plenty of vitamins.
Be kind to the McMahons. You’ll miss them when they’re gone.
Maybe you’ll wrestle yourself, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll have Summerslam parties, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll write off wrestling forever, maybe you’ll dance the Gooker at Wrestlemania XXX. Whatever you do, don’t congratulate your opinions too much, or berate your opinions either. Your thoughts on wrestling are important. So are everybody else’s.
Enjoy other fans. Meet them every way you can. Don’t be afraid of them or of what other other people think of them. They’re the greatest people you’ll ever meet.
Flip the bird, stare at your own hand, and do the Worm, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room.
Listen to the pre-show instructions, even if you don’t follow them.
Sometimes Jericho just needs a soda.
Do not read smart magazines. They will only make you feel sad.
Get to know your heroes. You never know when they’ll be gone for good. Be nice to the fading vets. They’re our best link to our past and the people most likely to stick with us in the future.
Understand that wrestlers come and go, but a precious few you hold on. Work hard to understand gaps in workate and style, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.
Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you biased. Live in North Carolina once, but leave before it makes you biased.
Anticipate.
Accept certain inalienable truths: Ticket prices will rise. Promoters will philander. You, too, will get old. And then you do you’ll fantasize that when you were young, ticket prices were reasonable, promoters were noble, and Mick Foley was God.
Respect Mick Foley.
Don’t expect anyone else to support wrestling. Maybe a new company will emerge. Maybe Turner will strike back. But you never know if either one will happen.
Don’t mess too much with your hair or by the time you’re 40 you’ll look like King Kong Bundy.
Be careful whose rants you believe, but be patient with those who rant.
Criticism is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the 80’s, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for love of the craft. Bashing Nash can be seen by some as an effort of love.
But trust me on enjoying wrestling.
-Bryan Middlebrook

That song was almost as emotionally satisfying as seeing Canada win the gold medal and the US team stand there in humiliation getting their silver medals while those kids in the Jeff Jarrett outfits smiled like zombies. Almost.