I experienced my very first Wrestlemania last Sunday. While my Gentleman shares my questionable taste in really bad television, I do not share his love of wrestling. It's more than a like for him. It's pure love. He knows the name of every wrestler, and all their signature moves and the words to their theme songs. I actually find it quite endearing and kind of cute. It's something that helps me know him better. A part of his childhood. He had wrestling, I had a massive collection of Ty Beanie Babies (we all had them, don't judge me). Apparently these two mutually exclusive obsessions make for a good relationship.
The whole art(?) of wrestling wasn't completely unknown to me as a child. All I knew was that Hulk Hogan was a monster of a man, with an ugly bleach blond mullet and incredibly creepy facial hair, who had a penchant for spandex pants and speedos. And I knew this only because my grandfather loved WWF as it was called in the '90's, and would always watch it with my male cousins. As a child, I scoffed at it. I just didn't understand the appeal of watching two grown men grab at each, locked in an epic fake battle to win some gaudy belt that looks like the contents of The Situation's stomach after a hard night of drinking and fist pumping. My ignorance was not lost on me when I discovered my Gentleman's love of the sport(?). One Monday (Monday is RAW night, much like how on Wednesday's we wear pink), we were hanging out and RAw came on. This was very early in our relationship and I tried my hardest not to scoff and openly mock this kind of awesome guy. But as I sat there, watching this spectacle with him, I couldn't help but get sucked in, and this was slightly disturbing, but not altogether surprising. Boiled down, wrestling is really just like any other trashy televsion show that we both watch. There are epic rivalries, friendships that span decades, evil villains with a mind on the bottom line, romance, fights, and last but not least, Donald Trump. Now, a year later, I watched (at least part of ) Wrestlemania 29. I still don't know most of the wrestlers, or their handlers or even their story lines, but I do know that if it involves The Rock or John Cena, I like it. Sure they still wrestle in tiny spandex pants, and yes, there are some very questionable fashion choices, but it's quite a spectacle and I couldn't help but enjoy it. I think me watching it was also probably both entertaining and mildly irritating at the same time. I also don't really know how to digest what I saw. I'm still thinking about it, and it's quite puzzling for me. I know for an absolute fact that this was not the last wrestling match I will ever watch, but I think that I'm okay with that.
It's more than just men with mullets in spandex. It's men with mullets and spandex and fireworks.