Those of you (and I mean 'you' as in singular, not plural) who
have been reading my column for a while realize that 'ol SJ faces
something of a quandary. As the First Russoholic (a title which I am
still proud to bear) of the P.O.V.,
you would think that my favorable reviews of WCW shows would come to an
end now that Vince has been replaced by Kevin Sullivan. And you would
be right. Not much of a quandary then, is it? Ah, but here's the
rub...no...no Kenny...please do not start rubbing the Hooters Girls.
By 'rub' I mean 'crux of the dilemma', not 'molest a scantily clad
waitress.' Well, wait a minute. If that's an option...no...never
mind. Must stay focused.
Back to my problem. My problem is, without WCW I have nothing to watch on Monday night. Why not watch RAW? Easy. I hate Vince McMahon. For 15 years I've tired to burn a hole in the back of his skull using nothing by my menacing gaze. Unfortunately my menacing gaze isn't what it used to be. Hell, it's hardly powerful enough to make light toast, much less skull-hole burning. Personally, I blame my wife...But again, I'm getting off topic.
I've hated Vince McMahon ever since he had my childhood hero, Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat, job his Intercontinental Title to the God Damned Fucking Honky Tonk Man (henceforth referred to as the GDFHTM...in fact, never mind because I'm done referring to the GDFHTM except for that last reference.) barely one week after Ricky finally won the belt at Wrestlemania in the finest blow-off match wrestling has ever seen. Needless to say, when you look up the word "miserable fuck" in the Saint James Dictionary (available at Spree.com and most moderately disreputable bookstores) you see a picture of Vince McMahon (with the GDFHTM being listed under "talentless sack of shit," or "worst Memphis export since cholera"). Yeah, I know. It's not his fault. Ricky probably had his NWA contract signed months before he jobbed the belt. But 'lack of just cause' has never come between me and a grudge in the past, and I see no reason for it to do so now.
Fortunately for me I didn't have to choose between WCW and the WWF this week. USA gave 'ol Saint James a compromise candidate. I have two choices--Either WCW Monday Nitro or the Westminster Kennel Club dog show. Hmm. Monday Nitro or a dog show. Damn this is hard. Do I focus on a bunch of out of breath mongoloids or focus on the dog show? Well, the dog show was a priority for the USA network, so it should probably be a priority for me. Without further adieu I give you...
What I Learned From the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
Now, I realize that some of you may be new to the whole Dog Show scene, so let me try to get you caught up on the rich tradition of this sport. Over one hundred twenty years ago, the Westminster Kennel Club was initiated by a group of gentlemen who enjoyed sporting dogs, primarily Pointers and Setters, and who preferred the company of dogs and other men to that of the opposite sex. Tired of being referred to as 'Sissies' and 'Colon Cowboys', the group decided to name themselves after the hotel they would meet at, "The Westminster." So the "Westminster Kennel Club" was born, and once every year the group would gather for a four-day orgy of groping dogs' legs and bellies, and staring at their asses for imperfections. And through it all the group wondered why they were always being called 'Gay As All Hell.'
To become a mainstream 90's sport like synchronized swimming and fencing, the Westminster Dog Show had to make some compromises for the sake of the camera. The length of the event has been reduced from four days to two, and participants are limited to dogs that have received their official AKC Champion of Record Title. The categories for competition are: Sporting Dogs, Hounds, Working Dogs, Terriers, Toy Dogs (also known as 'Gay' or 'Little Yip-Yip Fucker' Dogs), Non-Sporting Dogs, and Herding Dogs. Judging criteria include such factors as obedience, coat, 'softness of gums' (WTF?), teeth, musculature, dignity (Oh, THAT'S rich), and the always intangible 'how much he looks like his loser owner.' The competition was heated and lively, but as we all know there can be only one winner in each category. Have I mentioned that the Dog Show was still better than whatever the hell was going on on Nitro?
This is by far my favorite category, since these are the dogs that go out and help people kill shit. After weeding out the consummate losers, the competition came down to three participants. Sweetheart's Space Jam (Spaniel Dog), Salilyn 'N Erin's Shameless (Springer Bitch), and Bit O Gold Titan Treasure (Setter Dog). Bit O Gold dominated early until Sweetheart's Space Jam came off the top rope with a flying headscissor. Shameless began walking around the outside of the ring, stopping briefly to urinate on EVERYTHING. Despite the flawless execution by Space Jam, Bit O Gold no sold the move and threw Space Jam into the corner, setting him up for his finisher--the 'Bit O My Ass.' Splash. Cover. 1-2-3. Win. I saw this one coming. For some reason the WDS is trying to get this guy over even though he gets no heat from the crowd.
Again, these are dogs that aid in the killing of animals, so they're cool. My only problem is the exclusion of the 'Blue Tick' breed from the category. Anyway, after another battle royal it came down to two contestants for the belt: Hooters Mrs. Snugglepuss (Otterhound Bitch) and Sundown Alabaster Treasure (Salukis Bitch). I had a hard time getting into this one. Sure, we all love to see two bitches duking it out, but let's face it. They just aren't as good as the guys. A lot of punching and hairpulling. The occasional clothesline, but that's about it. I found myself pulling for Hooters Mrs. Snugglepuss for obvious reasons, even though she was clearly the heel. Ultimately, though, the other bitch won in a screwy finish involving a run-in by Ridge Runner Unforgettable. Ridge Runner maybe not, but the match was pretty forgettable.
This was clearly an undercard match, and it looked pretty hastily thrown together. I've seen Hi-Tech Johnny J Of Boxerton before, and he can really carry a match, but everybody else's workrate sucked ass. Ultimately N' Bingo Was His Name O came away with the win after barely hitting his finisher, the 'B-I-N-G-O', and damn near breaking Johnny J's tailbone.
Ugh. The terriers were terrible. A dog named 'Cocksure Summer Breeze' came out in a black robe and announced that later in the show something unbelievable would happen. Then, just as Sunspryte's Just In Thyme was accepting the title, out came Cocksure flanked by similarly attired Silvery Moon Unforgettable and Revelry's Awesome Blossom. They were being led by a dog from the Herding Group named Vangard Ingenue who proceeded to beat down Just In Thyme (which was hideously unfair since the two are from different weight classes). With help from the 'Dark Pack', Vangard nailed Just In Thyme to the giant wooden 'T' that was part of the overly-elaborate 'Terriers' sign. I'm not a holy-roller or anything, but I found this segment to be offensive and profoundly disturbing.
Little Yip-Yip Fuckers
Say what you will about Toy dogs, they know how to pull off mad lucha moves. The main event was a four-corners match between Loteki Supernatural Being, Shalee Tawnymist Royal Silk, Lakshmi Valentino Of Jo-Li, and Toobee's Rembrandt. The match moved WAY too fast for me to follow. There were a ton of high-risk moves, and it seemed like every five minutes all four dogs were going over the top rope. Despite being on the undercard, this was absolutely the match of the night. After a Herculean struggle, Loteki Supernatural Being got the pin on Toobee's Rembrandt and took home the title.
Talentless bitches, all of them. Lhasa Apsos, Miniature Poodles, Chow Chows, all companion dogs with no real talent or ability. This was like watching Dennis Rodman wrestle Karl Malone. I called this match Bash at the Bitch. For the morbidly curious, Lake Cove That's My Boy came away with the win.
This was the Main Event, and like most main events it was overrated. The aforementioned Vangard Ingenue took on Windwalker's "Stone Cold" Yes Virginia. Either one of these guys can be carried to a great match, but neither one can make a great match by themselves. You can probably figure out how the match went. Vangard came out with his 'Dark Pack'. Windwalker came out to the sound a dog whistle breaking. Windwalker with punches to the face. Vangard no sells and shoves Windwalker to the corner. Then Windwalker starts dominating. Takes Vangard down. Lifts leg. Takes Vangard down again. Lifts double-leg. Thesz Press. Chokeslam from Vangard. Then a fireball spot from Vangard. Windwalker stumbles around and takes a beating for a while until ultimately hitting the Virgin Stunner and getting the win. Predictable, and barely enjoyable.
If this had been a pay-per-view I probably would have been cheesed, but since it was free I found myself enjoying it. While the audiences for Dog Shows and Sports Entertainment may seem incompatible, the two worlds appear to be closer than we realize. While many of the segments were gratuitous, the storylines were captivating and the wrestling talent passable. I will definitely watch this event again next year, and I look forward to learning more about the world of Canine Exhibitions.
Why you may ask? Two words: No Hogan.