The View From Down Here – WRESTLING LEXICON pt 1 (A to L)

 INTRODUCTION:

 

This is designed to help you make sense of just some of the terms used in a wrestling context. It is presented in a manner which I hope you will find non-threatening and helpful. Any omissions are words that simply do not matter, and all mistakes are merely figments of your imagination.

 

 

A

 

ANGLE:
The story behind a match. Though never achieving the realism of Days Of Our Lives (how many times has Stefano died now?!) or the raunchiness of old General Hospital re-runs, it still remains the strangest way to explain why two men would want to smack the bejesus out of each other. Some popular angles from the past have been: Who would want to marry Stephanie McMahon? Who was the head of the Corporate Ministry? Who was the third member of the NWO? Who was more deserving of a shampoo commercial? And why on Earth was David Arquette allowed to win the WCW heavyweight title?! Please note, do not allow children to attempt to write wrestling angles and storylines. It can be harmful to their health and make them do strange and weird things with hamsters and soggy celery sticks. Tell them to smoke crack cocaine instead. It’s safer.

 

ANNOUNCER:
A person who explains the action to the audience. Who is also watching the same action as the announcer. And has more coherent and faster thoughts than the announcer. So why do they need to have an… oh, hang on. Wrestling audience. Let’s start again…
ANNOUNCER – person necessary to explain to a wrestling audience what it is they are seeing.

 

ATOMIC DROP:
A move involving driving the knee into the coccyx bone at the base of an opponent’s spine. Considered foreplay in certain parts of Wales, Scotland and Tasmania.

 

AUSTIN , STEVE:
Just some wrestler, although I do seem to remember that he was a pilot for NASA and was involved in a serious plane accident, after which the scientists replaced his legs, one arm and an eye with bionic limbs. Surely the extra power and strength this resulted in must have given him quite an unfair advantage. I’m surprised more wrestlers didn’t complain about having to face a man whose could run as fast as a speeding car, was capable of jumping to the top of a tall tree, and was able to defeat Bigfoot.

 

 

B

 

BACKYARD WRESTLING:
When wrestling is done by untrained teenaged boys in some-one’s backyard for fun and insanity. Often the shows these kids put on are cheap affairs with laser beams, entrance videos, dancing girls, 40 foot high steel cages, pyrotechnics, legitimate athletes who can bench press 500 pounds and former Olympic gymnasts and amateur wrestlers. Nothing special.

 

BATTLE ROYAL:
A way of getting as many people on a wrestling show as possible. For indy wrestlers, a good way to earn your ten bucks for fifteen seconds of work.

 

BEARHUG:
Something those cowboys do in the backwoods of America when they have had enough of their horse.

 

BEAT DOWN:
The best way of getting rid of that unwanted erection when you wake up in the morning.

 

BIG LEG DROP:
The wrestler jumps as high as he can and then drops hard to his bottom while draping his leg over the chest of his opponent who just lays there. And somehow this jarring of his own coccyx bone is supposed to render his opponent helpless and enable the pin.

 

BLADE:
To make oneself bleed by slicing oneself open with a sharp implement. This is done to make wrestling seem more realistic, and normally occurs on the forehead. Many things in wrestling can create blood, like being hit with a chair, being punched repeatedly in the head, being kicked in the stomach, hitting the guard-rail, hitting the padded turnbuckle, stubbing the toe, catching one’s trunks on a hook, being looked at wrong. All of these things are very dangerous and may cause a small piece of sharp metal being swiped across the forehead to coat the ring in a nice crimson mask.

 

BLOWN SPOT:
The resulting stain after a particularly disgusting act performed between two consenting wrestlers, though they will always deny it. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that…)

 

BODY SLAM:
One of the first rock’n’wrestling films, starring Roddy Piper and the Tonga Kid, with Capt Lou Albano and Dirk Bogarde (who played Face in the A-Team TV series, which also starred Mr T, who appeared with Hulk Hogan in the main event of the first Wrestlemania against Roddy Piper, who stars in a film called Body Slam co-starring the Tonga Kid, with Capt Lou Albano and Dirk Bogarde (who played Face in the A-Team TV series, which also starred Mr T… hang on, didn’t we do this already?)). Anyway, the film isn’t even worth this amount of space.

 

BOOKER:
The person who puts together the shows and decides winners, losers and advances angles. Examples include Dusty Rhodes (who booked himself to win the title), Kevin Nash (who booked himself to win the title), Fritz Von Erich (who booked every member of his own family to win the title), Verne Gagne (who booked himself to win the title because no one wanted his son to win the title), Jerry Jarrett (who booked his son to have a death grip on the title) and Kevin Sullivan (who booked himself to be a monumental loser).

 

BULLDOG:
Grab your opponent in a headlock, then jump to your bottom, at the same time ramming your opponent’s face into the mat. Fortunately for most wrestlers, this will do nothing to further damage their physical appearance. In fact, bulldog could almost be a description of the face of a professional wrestler at the end of his career.

 

BUMP:
A landing. Used by wrestlers because the word “bump” has one syllable while “landing” has two, thus making “bump” that much easier for them to say.

 

 

C

 

CALL A MATCH:
If you walk into a hall somewhere, see two guys wrestling in a ring and go, “That’s a match,” then you have called a match. Wasn’t that easy?

 

CALLING THE SPOT:
A perfectly acceptable practice whereby wrestlers talk to one another in the ring about the upcoming sequence. Quietly. Very very quietly. Acceptable: (whispered) “Reverse to suplex.” Unacceptable: stand and stare at one another, shrug, then say out loud, “What do you wanna do, Morty?” “I dunno, what do you wanna do, Ferdy?” “Let’s do a suplex spot.” “We did that last night. I wanna do something different!” “Well… what do you wanna do?” “Dunno, what do you wanna do?” If you think this may seem implausible, you have obviously never seen a WCW match from the years 1999-2001.

 

CENA , JOHN:
The butt of quite a few of my jokes. Thinks he’s a wrestler, a rapper and a human being. He’s wrong.

 

CHAIR-SHOT:
To be hit with a chair. Well, duh!

 

CLEAN HOUSE:
What many wrestlers of the 1980s are now doing to pay their bills.

 

CLOTHESLINE:
Swinging your arm around, you connect with the chest of a moving opponent who then falls to their back. A simple move to give and a simple move to take. Why then do so many wrestlers stuff the damned thing up? I mean, it’s easy! And these wrestlers are on TV! And people in the industry wonder why the rest of the world doesn’t take them seriously…

 

CRIMSON MASK:
Quite a poetic way of saying “bleeding like a stuck pig.”

 

CRUISERWEIGHT:
The wrestlers who weigh in at 200lb or less (though this is now 220lb) (sometimes). These guys are expected to be high-flying gymnasts with no fear for life or limb. Probably suicidal. Average age of 20 yrs, average life expectancy of 21 yrs, average career span of 6 months. But, damn, they’re entertaining. And if these guys are going to kill themselves just to entertain us, then that just makes for better television.

 

CURTAIN JERKER:
A private matter that certain wrestlers prefer to do just before entering the ring.

 

 

D

 

DDT:
A deadly poisonous insecticide, blamed for causing cancers and birth defects in children. And yet even this is preferable to watching Hulk Hogan in yet another of his interminable comebacks.

 

DEAD WEIGHT:
See promoter.

 

DEVELOPMENT TERRITORY:
A smaller promotion overseen by a larger promotion where youngsters with talent and potential are slowly moulded and shaped into boring, nondescript wrestlers with no redeeming qualities or personal style, all personality stripped from their being, and anything vaguely unique squashed to fit into the homogenised product of the parent company. The crowd then turns on them, the parent promotion wonders what they ever saw in them in the first place, and the talented youngster is dumped like yesterday’s potato salad, his hopes and dreams crushed… and he goes on to a lucrative living as a high school maths teacher where being able to defend yourself is a virtual necessity nowadays.

 

DISQUALIFICATION:
What happens when a wrestler does something so naughty that even the referee can’t ignore it.

 

DROP KICK:
To jump in the air and kick with both feet at the same time, planting them into your opponent. This really hurts. Honestly. Don’t believe me? Then go outside, pick a fight with some six foot four inch tall biker and hit him with a drop kick. You’ll be surprised at the results. Trust me…

 

 

E

 

ENFORCER:
An awesome knick name for a wrestler, which is odd because the vast majority of wrestling fans would not even know what the word means.

 

 

F

 

FACE:
Short for “babyface”. A good guy, so called because good guys are supposed to have faces as innocent as that of a baby. Which is true… if your baby looks like a badly beaten cauliflower with deformed eyes and a forehead scarred from ripping itself open too many times.

 

FIGURE FOUR:
If the average independent wrestler thinks he is going to earn more than a four figure sum each year from actually doing wrestling, then he’s dreaming.

 

FINISHER:
The last move of a match, a signature move that normally leads to a pin. With as many as eight of these in an average match nowadays, the name is increasing misrepresentative. By the way, the finisher has to have a good name. The more lame the name, them more likely it is some-one will kick out of it. ‘The punch’ won’t get a one-count; ‘The discus tornado punch of nuclear force’ will put a guy in hospital for six months.

 

FLAIR , RIC:
The most decorated wrestler ever in the big, national promotions. Won a total of approximately 607 titles, including world titles, heavyweight titles, intercontinental titles, tag titles, US titles, wrestler of the year titles and, of course, the prestigious ‘Cleanest Toilet of Des Moines, Iowa, 1883’ title. His 608 titles are a world record that will probably never be beaten. Still wrestles and wins even more titles than the 609 he already has, though his age is approaching that of Europe.

 

 

G

 

GIMMICK:
The wrestling persona as portrayed in the ring. We have seen many gimmicks in recent years, from wrestling hockey players to wrestling plumbers, from wrestling pig farmers to wrestling Connecticut blue-bloods, from wrestling Voodoo masters to wrestling priests and monks. But probably the strangest gimmick ever seen was that used by Kurt Angle – a wrestling wrestler! I don’t know where they come up with these outlandish, crazy ideas! A wrestler! It’s just so over the top!

 

GIMMICK MATCH:
A fight where strange and unusual gimmicks or stipulations are enforced. Nowadays, the rarest of the gimmick matches is the straight one-on-one wrestling match that stays in the ring.

 

GUARD-RAIL:
Metal fencing designed to keep the wrestlers safe from the ferals in the audience.

 

 

H

 

HARDCORE:
A type of pornography that leaves absolutely nothing to the imagination. And why wrestlers constantly go on about it just underlines the homo-erotic nature of the activity. Which doesn’t exist. Really.

 

HARD-WAY:
Bleeding that is not self-induced. Often happens to rookies in the showers after their first match.

 

HEEL:
The term for a bad guy. So-called because nothing is lower than a heel. There are two sorts of heel – cowardly and dastardly. Cowardly heels run away, attack from behind, and cheat a lot. Dastardly heels overpower and intimidate and move slowly. Then there are cowardly dastardly heels, and dastardly cowardly heels, and dastardly heelish cowards, and heelish cowardly dastards, and dowardly hastardly ceels, and mairsy doats and dosey doats and little dotey-iseys…

 

HHH:
Wrestler. Married a McMahon. Uses a sledgehammer. Egomaniac. Has 6 moves in his moveset, three of which involve hitting people with his knee, one involving hitting people with a sledgehammer. And a man who does NOT take steroids. No way. Uh-uh. I mean, if I even insinuated such a thing he’d rip my arms off, then hit me with a sledgehammer.

 

HOGAN , HULK:
(1) The Immortal One. A man whose charisma and look and physical presence overcame limited skill and helped transform wrestling from an underground movement held in small gyms and arenas to a large part of popular culture able to sell out the SkyDome.

 

HOGAN , HULK:
(2) The Evil One. The man whose self-serving ego has helped destroy a once popular past-time and turn it into a circus of excess. His refusal to retire gracefully or to help younger talent come up has made his legacy that much more insidious. And he starred in Santa With Muscles.

 

HURRICARANA:
A move that actually defies the laws of physics. I mean, how could the rotational momentum of a wrestler spinning around some-one’s head and flipping backwards overcome inertia and gravity and change directional motion in order to flip a much larger opponent over to their back? Look, there’s suspending disbelief, and then there’s rubbish like this. It’s almost as stupid as firing laser guns (which are just beams of concentrated light) when travelling faster than the speed of light. Wouldn’t you just shoot yourself in the bum? And in a hurricarana wouldn’t you just land painfully on your head while your opponent laughed at you? Think about it, people…

 

 

I

 

I:
The most common word used by a professional wrestler.

 

INDEPENDENT WRESTLER:
99% of all wrestlers in the world. Some-one who wrestles part-time, while working 9 to 5 at some boring desk job or at some boring assembly line. Where wrestling is their only way out of their drab, mundane, pathetic lives. They can pretend to be heroes or villains to their hearts’ content. They think it matters and means something. Sad, isn’t it?

 

 

J

 

JOB:
What most independent wrestlers avoid having.

 

JOBBER:
Some-one whose job it is to get beat by everyone all the time. Sort of like the Italy of wrestling.

 

JUICE:
Can mean either (1) the same as blading or (2) steroids. It’s best not to get the two confused, because injecting blood into your system won’t do a real lot, and cutting yourself until steroids come out just looks icky.

 

 

K

 

KAYFABE:
Means “keeping it real”. When wrestlers pretend that what happens in the ring is real life. Like when a guy gets pushed off a twenty foot ladder through a stack of three tables, so bad he doesn’t wrestle for another month… but can, of course, work on the shop floor of Ford fifty hours a week. It also involves playing the roles inside the ring outside of it… which is not too hard for most of the arrogant egomaniacs who want to be pro wrestlers. Translates as, “It’s still real to me, dammit!”

 

KICK OUT:
What a chorus girl does at the end of a big dance number.

 

 

L

 

LADDER MATCH:
When two (or more) men fight with ladders involved. Something that happens so often in real life that wrestling would have been foolish not to include it in their repertoire. I mean, it seems like every Friday night there’s another police report of ladder-related violence. This all culminated, of course, in Rungnacht – the night of a thousand ladders – when a gang of hoodlums ran riot through West Bangkok armed only with ten foot steel ladders. It took a week for order to be restored. Beats me why they don’t completely ban ladders – even the ownership of a brochure with ladders in it should be a $1000 fine – and make scaffolding compulsory. It’s obvious that ladders are the tool of the devil, whereas scaffolds are the instruments of angels. Michelangelo didn’t use a ladder to paint the roof of the Sistine Chapel – he used scaffolding.  So getting rid of ladders would certainly save a lot of trouble and make the world a much better place. [This definition brought to you by the Ace Scaffolding Company, Inc.]

 

LESLIE , ED:
Who? Well, you might know him better as: Brutus Beefacke, the Barber, Brother Bruti, the Butcher, the Booty Man, the Clipmaster, the Man With No Face, the Man With No Name, Zodiac, the Disciple, the evil Chinese guy in Santa With Muscles, or whatever name he’s been using this week. And none of this can hide the fact that he can’t wrestle. The guy’s an absolute pillock.

 

LUCHA LIBRE:
A Mexican wrestling tournament held in a library.

 

LUMBERJACK MATCH:
If too many years of Monty Python have taught us anything, it’s that this match involves butch men dressed in women’s clothing fighting each other. And if it doesn’t, it should.

 

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