After a solid night’s rest at our Winnipeg home base, i.e. a local wrestler’s house, Sigmon and I woke up early-ish, i.e. before noon, and went to work out at the gym, i.e. lift a little, but mostly sit in the YMCA’s hot tub.
For the first event this tour, we weren’t in a hockey arena. Instead we were wrestling in a Catholic elementary/middle school.
I was quite excited to find that this venue, like the one the night before, came equipped with children’s gymnastics mats that I could use to practice my flippy sh__, as my trainers might call it.
That night I was wrestling “The Zombie Hunter” Mentalo, a masked wrestler from Winnipeg that is highly respected as one of the best wrestlers from/in the area, with Japan and Mexico on his resume to boot.
Mentalo lived up to his helluva-wrestler reputation and I really enjoyed competing with him.
During this time, the Winter Olympics were in full swing. Which, as one might imagine, is a pretty big deal in Canada. So, more for my own entertainment, rather than the crowd’s, I had taken to yelling “U-S-Ayyyy!” after one of my big moves, once a match. In the Mentalo match I yelled it early on and the crowd turned on me fiercely.
“F__k off, ya American f__k!” Yelled one friendly Manitoban gentleman.
“America can suck my d__k!” Yelled one sweet woman of the Great White North.
More of the same hardcore heckling rained down like hellfire on me throughout the match.
Huh. And I thought it was awkward, just getting changed in a Catholic school cafeteria. Now, I’m getting talked dirty to, by a buncha strangers in one. All over three letters. Amazing. I thought to myself.
After the match, I got a respectful applause from a small minority of the crowd, but a lot more middle fingers.
I took a moment to appreciate the novelty of being the classic wrestling archetype, bad because they’re not one of us, before leaving the upstairs gym-cafeteria to get undressed in the downstairs gym-cafeteria.
After the event we went to an after party where nobody was giving me free drinks. So, I was already miserable when the promoter/matchmaker came up to me and yelled, over top of 99 of Jay-Z’s complaints, “You have been having great matches all week… So, I got high expectations to see if you can pull a watchable match out of Brian Rich!”
“Who’s Brian Rich?” I asked in a volume only slightly louder than Jigga Man explaining that he wasn’t referring to women when he used bitch in it’s current context.
A guy standing beside the promoter, looking sad, raised his hand and said something not as loud as H-To-The-Izzo’s sympathy for males having relationship issues with females.
I raised my eyebrows.
The sad fellow leaned in, as if to give me a shy kiss on the cheek, and yelled “I’m Brian Rich!” at the precise moment that he didn’t need to yell any more.
The non-wrestling people around us stared like they expected him to add bitch to the sentence and smack me. The wrestlefolk around us laughed their tight-wearing asses off.
“Ah… Cool.” I said with the enthusiasm of a child receiving candy corn on Halloween.
“I got some ideas if you want to hear them.” Brian Rich told me, before the next song started.
Is this motherf__ker really going to try to talk to me about a match, at a damn danceclub? I thought.
He seemed to read my mind and said, “I’m sorry. That’s dumb of me. You probably won’t like the ideas anyway.”
I felt bad about his self-defeating attitude, so I wanted to be nice. “It’s all good, bro.” I said, trying to think of a way to tell him that I sure as post-poutine sh__ wasn’t about to discuss wrestling with him at 1:00 am in discotech, in a nice manner, when I was saved by Ke$ha telling us how she feels upon waking.
“Sorry. Can’t hear too well in here.” I said way lower than required to hear, at that moment, to prove the validity of my sentence. Then I made a face like I remembered something important and I f__ked right off.
The promoter who had been quietly studying this whole encounter began to laugh hard.
Alright, you sonuvabitch, challenge accepted. I thought to myself.
While Ke$ha tik-tok’d her chorus, I was counting down the seconds till I had match of the night with Brian “I Got Some Ideas” Rich, in this bitch.