THIS IS A WORK OF FICTION BASED ON REAL EVENTS.
I go to the movies. I go to class. I have a girlfriend and we talk and laugh about things. I have a dog and a cat who live in peaceful coexistence with one another. I have a part time job. I have a novel I’m working on. I have a car. I have four pairs of shoes. I have a small collection of pornography. I have a DVD player and a VCR and I need to unhook one when I want to use the other. I have basic cable. I have a kitchen and a kitchen table. I go bowling. I play tennis. I call my father once a day. I have lunch with him every Sunday. I watch football. I watch Friends. I watch the Tick. I watch Boston Public. I take notes. I don’t watch wrestling any more. I haven’t since I went to the show in Kansas City. I haven’t since I killed Owen Hart and laughed.
I wake up in the middle of the night sweating. I watch television for an hour and then I go back to sleep although I don’t want to. There are very few things I want to do less then to go back to sleep. The dream is always the same.
But I sleep as much as I can. My girlfriend tells me I snore. I wake up in the morning and I drink four cups of coffee. One cup for each pair of shoes. Usually, I put on my sneakers. If my girlfriend is with me, I ask her for a ride to the train station. I let her drive my car during the day if she needs it. If she’s not with me, I walk to the train station. I buy a paper and get on the train that will take me to my classes. I try to read it, but I think about the dream.
A man in a blue and red costume with a cape that flows like the wind falls from the rafters and plummets to a wrestling ring. I laugh for minutes that feel like hours. People in white suits and a man with a crown rush into the ring and dance around the man in the red and blue costume. The men in the white suits turn to devils and attack the man in the crown. They knock the crown off of his head, steal it and laugh as they run away. I see the man with the crown’s long black hair and realize that he is Bret Hart. Bret touches the body of the man in the red and blue costume and begins to wither away. The skin melts away from Bret Hart’s body and a small white light flies out of his mouth. Bret’s muscles shrivel up and he falls into the fetal position. The man in the blue and red costume rises and cocks his head at me. He removes his mask and I stare at Owen Hart. Owen begins to plead with me. Not like this he says. Not like this. Owen then bows his head as tears fall from his eyes onto the withered and skinless body of his brother. Suddenly, Owen raises his head and screams at me in a voice that sounds eerily similar to Russel Crowe’s. ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED? ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED? He flies at me. I wake up sweating.
I wish I had been in charge of the equipment that lowered Owen to the ring. I would have screwed it up on purpose. I would have purposely and maliciously killed the bastard who haunts my dreams. Then I could be held responsible for my crime. I could be tried and convicted and not have the luxury of having four pairs of sneakers anymore. I could accept my punishment and let go of these feelings of guilt and self hatred. The train comes to a stop and I throw away my paper.
I was a child of the 80’s. I had the hippie turned yuppie parents who still smoked pot but owned a Mercedes instead of a van. I watched GI Joe and sometimes Gem on Saturday mornings. Both were on USA. Gem was the lead in to wrestling. I loved wrestling. I had a Hulk Hogan doll. We moved to the midwest in the 90’s, but during the 80’s we lived on Long Island in New York. I had cable there too. One of the only times I was allowed to stay up past 9:00 was on Saturday nights when the WWF had a Saturday Night Main Event. I used to beg my mother to let me stay awake until midnight, just to let me see the first few matches. I remember her laughing and telling me sure with a look in her eyes that suggested she didn’t expect me to stay awake past 10:30. I sure surprised her. I remember seeing Andre the Giant cheat Hulk Hogan out of the title and hand it over to Ted Dibiase with the help of Dave Hebner. I remember an article in WWF magazine saying that Dave Hebner got his referee license in India. I remember Hulk Hogan fighting The Genius and Mr. Perfect destroying the WWF Championship belt. I remember Kamala eating a chicken. But you know what was better then Saturday Night Main Event, the only other time my mom would let me stay up late? It was when MSG had a house show. They would broadcast the house show on their cable channel. I loved it. I got to see the Macho Man beat Hulk Hogan by count out. My favorite but still fuzzy memory was of a Japanese tag team that wore masks. There were three of them, but suddenly there was a fourth. After they beat the villains, the fourth member who everyone cheered for walked to each side of the ring and raised his mask. Oh my God! It’s Hulk Hogan! Me and my brother flipped out. It was awesome. It was innocent. They had a black manager who played a pimp named Slick and a black guy who was a savage who ate a live chicken. Well, the white people were innocent enough.
I had a growth spurt and the WWF didn’t. I stopped watching and from what I understand I missed out on such classics as the Goon, Duke Ã¢â‚¬ËœThe Dumpster’ Drose, The Gobblysomething and the Blue Blazer. We moved to a town outside of Kansas City when my Yuppie father got sick of being a full fledged Yuppie and moved us to a very unYuppie place. I still tuned in to wrestling from time to time, but Hulk Hogan’s good friend Tugboat was almost more then I could bear. A few years later the WWF had a growth spurt of its own and I started watching again. Stone Cold and the Montreal incident and DX and Mike Tyson reinvigorated my love for the WWF. They had cursing and tits and ass. I didn’t like Owen Hart. He was boring. I stop thinking about all of this and try to concentrate on the teacher.
They brought back the Blue Blazer. I had no idea what was going on. I asked my friend John about it, he wrote for an internet site, and he told me all about the Blue Blazer. A failed WWF superhero character played by Owen Hart. An excellent wrestler with a stupid gimmick. That was why it was so funny when Owen Hart denied knowing who the Blue Blazer was. That was why it was so funny when Owen Hart covered up Jeff Jarrett’s face and yelled, “Who was that masked man?Ã¢â‚¬Â It was kind of funny. It was a parody of a superhero. Then they flew Owen in on Raw, but he got stuck. That was hilarious. I wanted more of that. Class ends and I go have another few cups of coffee. I have money to pay for it. My cat and dog are probably eating their food out of their little bowls right now. My girlfriend is probably having sex with her friend Jimmy. She thinks I don’t know. I just don’t care.
John got tickets to see Over the Edge and invited me. I accepted and told him I’d get the next round of tickets. I was looking forward to the Blue Blazer match. It was going to be awesome. The Blue Blazer versus the Godfather. The Evil All American Superhero versus the Friendly Pimp. It was everything that was wrong with our country and everything that was right with the WWF. I couldn’t wait to see Owen’s entrance. She’s probably blowing him on my couch. It’s okay. There’s something she doesn’t know about me.
Oh God. He fell and I laughed like I’ve never laughed before. People gasped, one person screamed, and I laughed like I was watching Blazing Saddles for the first time. Oh God. He fell to his death and tried to sit up and I thought they were making fun of the whole superhero entrance thing. I laughed and I wanted that entrance so badly. These guys beat the hell out of each other for a living and I wanted them to do stupid stunts that they didn’t have to do otherwise. I killed a man with a wife and children. I demanded it. Wrestlers get thrown off of the top of cages and have to do stunts with cars. They do this because it made me interested, it got my money. A person who was good at his job had to be dropped from the ceiling to get me to cheer for him. I killed Owen Hart with my need for sensationalism and I laughed.
Class is finished. I head off to the office. I greet my boss and give her my research. She’ll get that right over to the big man. She asks if I feel like handing out some pamphlets. I have absolutely no problem with that. It would be my pleasure. My girlfriend can have sex with anyone she wants so long as she never knows about this. It is my greatest pleasure and she would never understand. I might not agree with everything they say, but unlike Vince McMahon, they care about those wrestlers. I wept for Owen Hart and dedicated my life to making sure it would never happen again. Vince McMahon wept for Owen Hart and from what I understand lets wrestlers jump off of ladders through tables. One slight mistake and there will be another tragedy. If everyone would just accept responsibility like I have then it would all change. I cling to this belief like a life preserver. I hand out the pamphlets and wish the people a good day. Some smile and nod but most young people look at me with disgust. A young man wearing a Rock shirt wanted to have a fist fight with me. I’ll pray tonight for his salvation. I’ll pray that he starts having the dream and admits that he too killed Owen Hart.
I go to the movies. I go to class. I have a girlfriend and we talk and laugh about things. I have a dog and a cat who live in peaceful coexistence with one another. I have a part time job. I have a novel I’m working on. I have a car. I have four pairs of shoes. I have a small collection of pornography. I have a DVD player and a VCR and I need to unhook one when I want to use the other. I have basic cable. I have a kitchen and a kitchen table. I go bowling. I play tennis. I call my father once a day. I have lunch with him every Sunday. I watch football. I watch Friends. I watch the Tick. I watch Boston Public. I take notes. I don’t watch wrestling any more. I haven’t since I went to the show in Kansas City. I haven’t since I killed Owen Hart and laughed. I don’t always agree with my boss or my company, but they want to stop the filth and the unnecessary violence in the WWF. I know they can’t stop it all, but maybe we can save one wrestler’s life. I then believe I can stop having the dream. Until then, I am a murderer. I work for and am a member of the Parents Television Council.
Accept the blame and join us. Let’s save a life.