The Patriot 2001
The Day I Became a Mark Again...
I got the idea for this in part by reading Llakor's "When we were Marks" and in part what happened to me as described below. So Llakor, I'm not trying to rip you off or anything.
Like many of the people who read this site, I am what has become to be known as a "smark" or smart wrestling fan. I surf the Internet everyday, hitting the various websites looking for any and all news on pro wrestling. When I had access to a T3 Internet connection at college, this was extremely easy. I even made it a point to listen to the Observer radio show everyday at five. I, of course, eagerly awaited the recaps every Tuesday and Friday from CRZ and even ventured on to the EZBoard and participated in an e-fed. I enjoyed being able to finally talk in depth about angles, roster news, and other facets of wrestling. I experienced a little drop-off when I returned home from school to two jobs and a dial up connection, but my internship gave me access to DSL and everything was good. Hell, I even started to write this column. But this Monday, for one day, things changed.
While RAW is usually fresh and new, due to the nature of a live broadcast, you can still get a good idea about what's going to be on the show by reading the news sites and the WWF.com preview. However, this Monday, I read no news after 12 noon. I was running errands all over Boston for my boss in his car (anyone who's been to Boston in the last 5 years or so knows that you cannot drive in the city anymore because of the Big Dig. I hate that farcing icehole.) and when it was all said and done, I walked into my house at 6:30pm. To my dismay, I saw my Mom on the computer attempting to use AOL, which, I'll be honest, is like watching a car wreck taking place. So I was without any access to news for most of the day. But, I figured that RAW would be paint-by-numbers anyway to the close proximity of the PPV. But I was very, very wrong.
Once I heard the VinceStalker reveal that he was at the arena, I began to get excited. The video had shown a figure clad in black wearing cowboy boots, so I immediately thought HBK. I dismissed that however, because even that would be too much to give away. So there I sat, in rapt attention, watching my TV. When DDP took off the mask the following was heard:
JR: It-It's Dallas Page!
Me: HOLY RUSTED METAL, BATMAN! DDP!
It was, in retrospect, embarrassing. I marked out all over my living room for at least the next ten minutes. But later, I got to thinking that something like this is maybe good every once and a while. Pick one day, preferably before a televised show, and don't do anything. Be as you once were and be legitametly surprised and excited by what happens. I did it inadvertently, but I still enjoyed myself like it was the old Saturday afternoon syndicated squash shows, where everything was still pure and good, and anything was possible. Hogan making the save, Gorilla and Jesse arguing over the referee's calls, McMahon overselling on commentary like a Henning v. Goldberg match. I, of course, have been right back on the Net since Monday. But I've come away with the knowledge that we can still recapture a little of that spark that made us fans in the first place, if just for a little while.
Then again, what the hell do I know?
That's all I got for today.
Until Next Time, My Brush With Greatness is Over.