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Rougeaus in Montreal


Guest columnist: Llakor


{For those who are keeping score at home, this is the first part of the Llakor vs. BrewGuy mano-a-mano he-man recapping challenge as, in one of my more foolish displays of machismo, EVER, I try to keep pace with BrewGuy, move for move, match for match, recap for recap. I'm starting at 23:18 EST., Sunday night, as soon as I got back from watching No Way Out at the downtown Montreal Paramount theatre}

A Tale of Two Promotions
Part One: The Rougeau Family Gala

OR How Llakor Spent His Christmas Vacation

OR Acadians, Asparagus and Ass-Whoopings, Oh My!

Dear CRZ:

Christmas is, of course, the season for family gatherings, and in Quebec it is also the season when the First Family of Quebec wrestling gather for their annual Christmas Rougeau Family Gala, or, as we like to refer to it, the time of the year when the wrestling fans of Quebec gather to make an early contribution to Jacques Rougeau's RRSP. But, before I could attend the Rougeau Family reunion, I had to attend my own family reunion, which meant trekking up to the Laurentians to what my niece Meaghan refers to as "Camp Quebec". Meaghan is FOUR!, which means that Christmas is all about her (as it should be). Now, having three younger sisters, I am somewhat familiar with the notion that young girls tend to be control freaks, especially when they're FOUR! (she' s FOUR~!) but I had no idea of the fuss-budget-squared anal-retentive capacity of a four year old girl at Christmas time (or it was a memory that I had mercifully blocked out), until that is, I walked into my parents home on Christmas Eve, and ran full force into Hurricane Meaghan. Well, first of course, I HAD to hang up my stocking because Princess Meaghan would not allow her Uncle's stocking to be hung over the fireplace with care, until he arrived. Then I had a busy agenda carefully planned by my niece. First, I HAD to inspect the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down; than I HAD to give my opinion on the table, that would be moved beside the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down; not to mention I HAD to help choose a plate, that would be left on the table, that would be found beside the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down; next I HAD to inspect the cookies, that would be placed on the plate, that would be left on the table, that would be moved beside the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down; than I HAD to get down the glass, that would be put alongside the cookies, that would be placed on the plate, that would be left on the table, that would be moved beside the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down; after which I HAD to taste-test the milk, that would be poured into the glass, that was to be put alongside the cookies, that would be placed on the plate, that would be left on the table, that would be moved beside the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down, and I absolutely HAD to read and help fold the letter, after we taste-tested the milk, that would be poured into the glass, that was to be put alongside the cookies, that would be placed on the plate, that would be left on the table, that would be moved beside the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down. A letter, of course, to Santa Claus, thanking him for all the gifts that he was bringing, and hoping that he would enjoy the milk and cookies that were left on the table, by the letter, that would be folded after we taste-tested the milk, that would be poured into the glass, that was to be put alongside the cookies, that would be placed on the plate, that would be left on the table, that would be moved beside the fireplace where Santa Claus would come down. At which point, I rather foolishly inquired whether we should wait to see IF Santa Claus was going to bring any gifts, before thanking him for bringing them. Meaghan, with the withering contempt that only a FOUR! year old girl can summon, explained to me with the long-suffering patience of a child who has to deal with ignorant grown-ups all day long, that Santa Claus was sure to bring gifts because that was what Santa Claus did, and in any case, thanking him might encourage him to leave more. It's a good thing that Hitler didn't have any daughters, because if he had a four year old girl as an assistant rather than Speer, the Allies never would have made it off the beaches of Normandy.
My nephew Ryan Ryan, on the other hand, being two-two, was quite bewildered by the whole Christmas experience. The stack of presents taller and wider than he is, he could understand and heartily approved of, but the whole fat guy in a red suit came down the chimney and left them for him part, he had flying saucer eyes of wondering disbelief about, no matter how many times his sister explained it to him. Ryan, it would appear, is taking after my side of the family. First of all, he has acquired my ability to put people to sleep, as at bedtime, the ritual seemed to be: Ryan goes up with his mother (my sister), ten minutes later Ryan walks back down the stairs and announces, "Mommies asleep." So his dad goes up with him, and then his Nina, and then his Poppa, until it is only him and his Uncle awake in the house, staring at each other, locked in a battle of drooping eyelids and failing wills. He also appears to have acquired my hard cranium, illustrating his ability to take head-blows on two memorable occasions. First, I was demonstrating the principal of Foucault's Pendulum to Ryan using his legs as the arc and his head as the weight when Meaghan, jealous of being left out of scientific discovery, dived between my legs from behind, demonstrating another pendulum principle, which is that when a pendulum is in its downward arc, it is very hard to arrest its swing. Oddly, while Meaghan was provoking the neighbours to conclude that we were shooting Frissons Quatre in our house, Ryan was unhurt and rather confused as to why Meaghan was making all the fuss about a mere head-bump. Later, after his mom and dad had gone cross-country skiing to Mont Tremblant, Ryan, in the pursuit of the Camp Quebec indoor oval cat-chasing speed record, tripped over a carpet and demonstrated the nicest swan-dive head-butt that I've seen since Chris Benoit was hurt. Seriously, it was a thing of beauty, full extension of the body, arms thrust out behind his back, head craning forward, a wonder to behold... until he hit the kitchen door. I, of course, was immediately blamed by my mother for the tragedy, because I wasn't chasing Ryan, which is a bit of female logic I'm still trying to wrap my head around. (Sign that you'll never see in my mother's kitchen: Shit Happens. Not because my mother doesn't swear, Christ she's from northern New Brunswick, she swears like a truck driver when provoked. But while Shit may in fact Happen, it doesn't Happen in Her kitchen.) On the plus side, after the initial shock wore off, Ryan was fine except for a slight bump, and I was, at least temporarily, off the hook blame wise. I was, however, given the task of keeping Ryan awake, which naturally runs totally counter to all my academy training (wasted!) Not to mention that the only thing harder to do than getting a two year old to go to sleep, is keeping a two year old from going to sleep. To further handicap me, my mother promptly insisted on sending Ryan and me off in the cold to buy ice cream. So, I'm bumping Ryan along in a carriage, in the dark, in the cold, he's bundled like he's going to the South Pole, and I am supposed to keep him awake. In the end, I could only do it by convincing him that the only way to get ice cream in the Laurentians was to go to the MOOOOOOONNNNNNN!!! His look of betrayal when the Moon turned out to be the local couche-tard, will, I'm sure, haunt me to my grave. In any event, all good things must come to an end, and in time I was forced to return to Montreal where the Rougeau Family Gala awaited, but first I had to endure my store's hastily arranged post-Christmas two day 50% blow-out sale. Now I have nothing against sales in theory, and certainly it would make sense to have one right after Christmas, but it seems somewhat odd for the head-office to not have one scheduled for after Christmas, only to decide on the 22nd of December that, "Hey! Next Friday and Saturday would be a great time for a sale!" Fortunately, I made it through with all my extremities intact, although I did have to deal with a shoe-thrower on Friday. (The customer, incensed that he could only find the left shoe of a particular pair, decided that throwing said left shoe in the general direction of my head might improve his chances of finding the right half of his footwear choice. You know that things aren't going to go well when you ask someone to calm down [post-shoe throwing] and they reply, "I am calm! I'm so FUCKING calm right now!" Except, of course, that this discussion took place in French which meant that the conversation got somewhat RELIGIOUS~ in nature. The entire experience wasn't much improved after I escorted the customer and his entire, insane, shoe-throwing, display case-shoving family out of the store, and my fellow manager on duty wondered aloud why I had asked them to leave. To the credit of those in the store at the time, every single staff member and customer standing behind her, promptly rolled their eyes in disbelief that she would even have to ask.) And on Saturday, I had one of those customers that makes retail sales management such a special, special career choice. The customer who decides that she is going to start trying on four shopping carts full of clothes only after the store has been officially closed. The customer who having been finally convinced, an hour later, to bring her purchases to the cash, proceeds to insist that the only cashier who can serve her is the newest, greenest, and sadly, slowest cashier in the store. The customer who argues the price of every third piece of clothing despite being told that it is store policy not to reduce anything more than the 50% she is already getting. The customer who spends the entire time cursing me out in Spanish thus doubly insulting me, by calling me a son of a bitch. and believing that I am so ignorant that I won't realize what I am being called. (I may be only fully fluent in two languages, but like most retail management, I'm fluent in curses and insults in more than a dozen languages.) The customer who after making all her purchases, announces that she can't possibly carry it all home, and will we store it for her, and after I open the three locks in front of her of the store-room, asks if it will be safe in there because she doesn't want other customers going through her stuff. The customer who after finally leaving the store, allowing us to finally lock and bolt the front door, comes back ten minutes later and demands to be let back in. The customer who throws a hissy-fit in the front of the store after being told that after we lock the front door, we can't let anybody back in. Ah yes, a special, special lady.

So it can safely be said that come Sunday, December 30th at 3 pm, I was in the mood for wrestling, even "family-friendly wrestling". I hadn't bought a ticket in advance, but directing myself to the Molson Centre, I was able to get tickets on the floor for a mere $27 Canadian. Tickets in the Reds were $22 Canadian while those higher up were $17 Canadian. (Actually, $25, $20 & $15 plus a $2 service charge.) At 3:05, a mere 5 minutes late, the HOT! PYRO! went off and we were off to the races.

Match#1: Hacksaw Jim Duggan vs. le Prisonnier Serge Rolland
Hacksaw comes down in U.S.A. overalls, with a flag breastplate. He is naturally carrying his trusty 2 by 4, and announces, "Wherever Hacksaw Jim Duggan is, his 2 by 4 is not far behind! I love the snow! Happy New Year!" What's this: Frosty the Hacksaw Snowman? Hacksaw wishes Jacques luck on his new promotion, indicating that he is just the latest ol' wrestling buddy of Jacques to fall victim to his new wrestling promotion con. Before the Rougeaus went to the WWF, their promotion was called Lutte International. Jacques has been using the name Lutte International 2000 since at least '98 to mark his whenever I need the cash galas. Every time, he finds a few guys that he knew from back in the day and convinces them that he is about to relaunch his promotion and they're the guy that will put him over the top and help him run regular shows. Either his victims never compare notes or like the townsfolk in Huck Finn, they're not going to admit that they're just another victim, until everyone in town has been hosed.
Hacksaw's opponent from "Le Penitencier de Laval" is a big tub of convict-striped goo at 402 lbs. He looks like the kind of prisoner that other prisoners keep around in case they take over the prison in a riot, and during the month-long siege they start running out of food.
Hacksaw tries to start a USA chant but gets drilled from behind. The Prison Press gets two. Hacksaw's Clothesline is met by le Prisonnier's Clothesline and Hacksaw goes flying. Big Fat Leg Drop gets two. Hacksaw makes the baby-face recovery and gets the ten-punch count going in the corner. Le Prisonnier punches him back down, tries to climb the ropes but can't because he's TOO FAT! He finally manages to clamber up enough to attempt the Banzai splash which gets nothing but mat. Duggan drops into the three point stance, Spear! & Duggan and the Ref count to three together. Match over at 3:11 (3 minutes?) Hmmmmm... I wonder if Rougeau or Hacksaw got hosed on the pay for that match. That was very Wrestling Challenge, and it can't be entirely blamed on le Prisonnier. Granted that he was much better off as part of a short convict/fat convict tag team, still, as a singles wrestler, Ouellette managed to drag a ten minute match out of him back in June.
It's a little sad how irrelevant Hacksaw is in the grand scheme of (wrestling) things, not that this is a recent development. I remember when I first concluded that Hacksaw was irrelevant. Yokozuna had broken three of his ribs (in 1990?) with a Banzai Splash putting him on the shelf for about three months. When Duggan finally came back for a European tour, he started hunting down Yokozuna, finally getting him in London. The match climaxed with Duggan in the corner (again!) and Yokozuna poised to sit on him (again!), but, it was the same corner where Duggan had left his trusty two by four. Now you're Hacksaw Jim Duggan, you've just come back from a painful injury that "threatened your career" and the man who did it by sitting on you is about to sit on you all over again. What do you do? What do you do? Now, I'm not someone who advocates violence... Ummm... Let me rephrase that. I'm not someone who easily advocates violence... Ummm... Would you believe, I'm not someone who frequently advocates violence? Nevermind. The point is, that if you're Duggan, if there was ever a moment in your career to consider changing your career choice from wrestler to proctologist and to start your proctology practice by performing an emergency radically invasive arboreal colonoctomy, this, this was that moment! But, instead, Duggan stayed the goofy baby-face victim that made him so irrelevant. Not that making Yokozuna hated didn't serve a purpose, but it certainly didn't make Duggan interesting. Say what you will about the Team Canada gimmick, it at least made Duggan look relevant, look interesting, look even, dare I say it, dangerous. In fact, if Duggan had the cojones to be a heel and stay a heel, he has all the tools to be a great psychopath. He should have kept his hair cut short, come to the ring, insulted the fans, spit on the flag, and wait for some local cruiser weight to come out and tearfully ask why Duggan is ruining his childhood memories. The cruiser weight bumps like a madman to make Duggan look good, and all those Duggan symbols get twisted and abused in the match. He could break a flag-pole on the cruiser weight, choke him with the flag, mess him up with the two by four, in the process using the match to make a statement about the corrosive effect of nostalgia, or in other words, "Your childhood hero is kicking your ass!" Even Duggan's famous shout could be twisted around. Imagine Duggan applying some nasty submission hold and taunting the cruiser weight to say, "Ho! Say it or I'll break your leg! Ho! Damn You! Ho! Say It!" **Sigh** I think I just ranted about this match longer than the match actually lasted.

Speaking of local cruiser weights...
Match#2 Makysha Waw Chong Bobby James vs. Super Style Maxim Boyer
"From Japan weighing in at 163 lbs, Makysha Waw Chong Bobby James," comes to the ring with a valet accompanied by the theme music from Once Upon A Time In China. His valet doesn't speak a word of English or French and seems quite insulted that the ring announcer doesn't speak Japanese. When asked if he speaks French Bobby replies, "Yes, but why would I want to?" That's an interesting twist on the time-honoured Quebec tradition of using language to get cheap heel heat. Bobby and his valet do the whole traditional Japanese Sumo ceremony complete with the bowing and the throwing of salt. (HA!) "His opponent from Montreal, at 150 lbs, Super-Style Maxim Boyer." Bobby begins with a head lock which he converts into a head lock take down for two. Maxim reverses for two. Getting to their feet, Maxim uses a head-scissors take-down that leads to a pinning predicament broken up by Bobby's foot on the ropes. Maxim pulls up Bobby with a head lock. They split and run the ropes and Maxim hits a SWANKY~ leap-frog sunset flip for two, followed by a scissors hold take down for two. Bobby retreats outside, but Maxim tracks him down and throws him back in the ring. They run the ropes and Maxim starts with the jumping, hitting a forward facing leap-frog and a blind backwards-facing leap-frog, before landing a back-body drop. Bobby retaliates with a leaping clothesline, a hair-pull take down, a few slaps and some knife-edged chops. Maxim breaks out of the corner and tries to pull a leaping body-press off the ropes but misses. Bobby points to his (superior) brain (HA!) and stomps a mud-hole through Maxim and walks it dry. Bobby picks up Maxim for a long, patient, fallaway slam that gets one, but the reversal by Maxim gets two. They split, and Bobby goes into the Karate Kid Crane Pose, and Maxim, answering years of "Why doesn't anyone ever?" type questions, hits a drop-kick spilling the crane. Picking up Bobby, Maxim holds him up for a long, patient, Razor's Edge. Maxim climbs to the top, but Bobby's valet covers his body with hers, and Maxim climbs down, only to have his gallantry rewarded with a low blow, leading to the pin by Makysha Waw Chong Bobby James at 3:22 (10 minutes?)
Now that's more like it. The thing about wrestlers trained by Jacques Rougeau: their offence may be basic, but they know how to apply it and when, their matches are usually well-paced, the heels are good at getting heat, the baby-faces can sell, and everybody tries to tell a story in the ring. And that's not a bad thing, that's a good thing!

While the ring monkeys are busy tightening the ropes, Sid Vicious limps out in a baseball cap and a track suit looking very 1970's Burt Reynolds. "My Leg is on the road to recovery... Tonight as the special Guest Referee between Kurrgan and Jean-Francois Ouellette, Justice... Will... Be... Served..."

Match#3 is a triangle match with BullDozer as the special referee.
Bulldozer is wearing a blue hard hat and a Cactus Jack shirt with the arms cut out.
Team#1 at 300 lbs is Handsome JF and Gorgeous Neil. (I've no idea which is which. One has black hair in a pony-tail, a black-top hat and black no-sleeves shirt. The other has red hair, an orange hockey jersey and a bandanna. They are hereby dubbed Red Head and Pony Tail.)
Team#2 at 310 lbs is Tornado Dylan Joffre and le Kid Kevin Steen. (Again, no clue. One is wearing a red shirt with black pants, the other is wearing a black shirt with red pants. They are hereby dubbed Black Shirt and Red Shirt.)
Team#3 at 406 lbs is Dow Jones & le Gladiateur Serge Demers. (OK. This is easy. Le Gladiateur would be the guy in the Roman soldier costume & Dow Jones would be the IRS clone with the cell-phone permanently glued to his ear. Sadly, Dow Jones uses one of those little flip-open nearly invisible phones rather than using Paul E. Dangerously's old cell phone that was big enough to be used as a weapon. I recognize that it would seem goofy to use a big-ass cell phone, but this is wrestling, you're supposed to make big gestures, and play to the crowd. In any case, how are you supposed to make it a loaded cell-phone if it's one of those Motorola need a magnifying glass to see it flip phones. Besides, the first person to make fun of the cell-phone just gets clobbered with it, that's all.)
Bell rings at 3:30. Dow Jones insists on starting, but he is interrupted by his phone and begs off. (HA!) Instead we start with Red Head and Black Shirt. Black Shirt dominates in the early going, landing a scissors hold take down and hanging up Red Head in a Tree of Woe in the corner with his shirt over his face blinding him for the inevitable Baseball Slide. Regal take down is followed by another scissors hold take down. Double Team on Red Head gets two. Face Jam on the knee followed by Rolling Thunder gets two. Black Shirt lands a look ma no hands pile driver, but Red Head responds with a choke-slam back-breaker. The heels combine for a Double team Alabama Face Jam and Pony Tail tags in. He greets Black Shirt with an Underarm Back Breaker followed by a Sit-Out Slam. Black Shirt then goes up top, but Red Head posts him. Superplex by Pony Tail gets two. Drop-Kick by Pony Tail gets two. Frustrated, Pony Tail tags in Dow Jones who throws a clothesline on Black Shirt that throws him for two rotations with a lemon twist, while Dow Jones never stops talking on the phone. (HA!) Putting the phone away, Dow Jones climbs for a second rope elbow, lands it and... goes back to the phone. Dow Jones tags in Gladiateur while Black Shirt tags in Red Head. Gladiateur and Dow Jones dissension leads to a Pony Tail ambush concluding with the Gladiateur being choked in the corner. Pony Tail and Red Head combine for a double-team baby-carriage pick-up slam, followed by a choke on the ropes with Pony Tail pulling the legs while Red Head works the throat. The faces run in, giving Gladiateur a chance to crawl to his corner, where he is clocked by Dow Jones' phone. Pony Tail returns to the ring to hit two suplexes on le Gladiateur. Red Head tags in, but while he is working over le Gladiateur, Red Shirt & Black Shirt hit a stereo double-team leaping clothesline from the top rope to take out Pony Tail. Faces return to the ring and start cleaning Red Head's clock in a very Lita/Essa Rios anything you can do, I can do better display of one-upmanship. Dropkick, DROPKICK, Suplex, SUPLEX, Poetry in Motion, frog splash and finally the Tree of Woe which leads to stereo cross-ring Drop-Kicks from the top rope. Gladiateur gets tagged in and he wants his partner. Dow Jones starts quoting from the rule book, so special ref BullDozer brings him in the hard way. Gladiateur Suplex on his partner. Gladiateur Leg Drop on his partner. Black Shirt lands a flipping back drop on Dow Jones. Red Shirt hits a flipping, rolling frog splash. Heel run-in breaks the count. Heels go flying with baby faces in pursuit. Le Gladiateur rolls up Dow Jones for the win and then goes extra-curricular Third Punic War on him. Match over at 3:45. (15 minutes?)
After everybody leaves, Dow Jones does a victory pose because his team won! (HA!)

M. Patate (Mr. Potato Head) comes out to Mambo#5 to draw for some prizes that miss me by a couple of rows.

Match#4: Mad Max vs. J.J. Rougeau
"From Montreal, at 203 lbs and 13 years old, Mad Max." With bright yellow hair, and black and yellow track suit, Max is looking very Soprano Jr. The ring announcer busts his chops over his hair color so Max retorts, "Better Yellow than Grey!"
"From Rawdon, at 98 lbs, a 4th Generation wrestler, Jean-Jacques Rougeau!"
Hey, Hacksaw didn't get pyro and JJ does? JJ is coming out to the theme of Rocky. He is wearing blue trunks but no shirt. He is wiry, but surprisingly muscular for a twelve year old 98 pound weakling.
JJ controls to a front-face lock that leads to a take down that gets two, kick out, take down again, and again it gets two. A Leap Frog combo leads to a drop-kick followed by a back-body drop. Max jaws with the crowd and then begs off from JJ. When JJ looks for guidance from the crowd, Juvenile Delinquency Attacks! JJ is choked in the corner, slumps down and is choked by Max's foot. JJ struggles to his feet and is slammed, hair-pulled back to his feet and slammed again. JJ rallies briefly for a Sunset Flip roll-up that gets two. Max puts JJ into a Camel Clutch and really sits back on it. JJ does this neat bit where he taps once, waves off the ref, taps, waves, taps, waves, taps, waves, getting the crowd into it without actually tapping out. JJ struggles to his feet. Sit-Out Power Bomb by Max gets two. Elbow Drop gets two. Max drags JJ over to the corner, so he can go up top. A second rope splash gets nothing. JJ goes up top and lands a top rope splash. While JJ is waiting for the ref to count to three, four, five, any large number, the midget Little Broken is out to distract the ref. Little Broken and me are probably the only people in the arena who remember that at the last Rougeau Family Gala back in June (!) at the smaller Verdun Arena, JJ beat Little Broken to win his first ever match. Little Broken's attempt to add CONTINUITY~ to the GALA immediately makes him my favourite guy on the entire card. Meanwhile, Max hits a Clothesline on the back of JJ's head, and folds him up for the pin. Play his music from The Wall! Match ends at 4:00 (8 minutes?) Jacques is a great dad, eh? "For Christmas son, I'm making you job in front of five thousand people." "Aw Gee Dad, you shouldn't have, no really, I'm serious, you shouldn't have..."
Not that this was a five-star classic or anything, but JJ is only twelve years old, and he has some of the best goofy sells this side of the Rock, he knows how to get the crowd into a match, and his offence while basic hasn't a trace of slop in it, making JJ my favourite Fourth Generation Wrestler of ALL TIME! (Wait a minute! Are there any other Fourth Generation Wrestlers?)

And we break for intermission.

{And since it's 3:39 am, four hours and 4000 words later and I am only about half done, I'm going to bed before I do a drooling face plant onto my key-board. I don't know how BrewGuy does it...}

{I'm back at my recapping post. It's Tuesday afternoon at 3:21 p.m. I've just read BrewGuy's recap and I noticed a much higher than usual number of spelling errors. Wonder if it was me breathing down his neck that did it? (More likely he caught J210 stalking and made him type up the recap.)}

Now BrewGuy & I have had a conversation about my recaps. (Well, to the extent that we have conversations. Usually, I indulge in long monologues, and he grunts every once in a while to let me know that he's still listening, Canadian Grizzlies not being noted for their abilities at small talk.) Brewguy suggested that, "As you go on, you learn to shorten up your recaps a bit." Personally, I'm finding exactly the opposite. As I do more recaps of live shows, I find that my ability to take notes improving and my methods of taking those notes becoming more efficient. My ultimate goal is to be able to deliver a recap of a live event of the same standard as CRZ; Z being the gold standard by which all recappers are measured. (In light of recent events, perhaps I should say that a MOTIVATED CRZ is the gold standard by which recappers are measured. [Up yours ya lousy Canuck - CRZ]) Of course, since I'm recapping events that I've seen live, with no recording devices more sophisticated than my brain, a watch, a pen and a piece of paper, I'm operating under a considerable handicap in trying to equal CRZ, who has the benefit of years of experience, and a rewind button. Obstacles, on the other hand, should never be a deterrence in the quest for excellence. In addition to my leaving events with more and better notes, I've been finding, that my quest for an accurate description of these events, is less a quest for the objective reality of what happened, and more a quest for the subjective reality of how I felt about experiencing those events. The one leading to the other if you follow my meaning.

Back to the Rougeau show, we come back from intermission at 4:25

Match#5 is a midget match! Little Broken vs. Tiger Baby! And it's a (Mask?) vs. Hair match! Woo-Hoo! My cup runneth over!
Little Broken, "at 118 lbs from St-Constant." is in orange camo gear and comes out to "Give Me All Your Loving" I'm guessing that Little Broken is the one putting his hair on the line, quickly confirmed by the ring announcer taunting Little Broken by introducing the hair-cutter and predicting that Little Broken is walking out of the ring bald. "At least I've got hair to cut!" (HA!)
The music of "Jump Around" kicks in. Hey I remember this guy! It's the dancing midget, and his fat dancing partner, on their matching ATV's driving to the ring. But, but, Tiger Baby is bald and he doesn't wear a mask! What the hell is he putting on the line? Let's watch the midget and the fat guy dance! (Cause everybody loves dancing fat guys. Right! Right?) Oh! Tiger Baby is putting his career on the line. What career? Is there some continent-wide midget wrestling circuit that I should know about? (Must be partners with the pudding wrestling circuit.) You know, I have a bad feeling about this. Between the inevitable return of JJ to return the run-in favour, and the hair-dresser at ring side, and, and Tiger Baby not risking anything that he would be upset about losing, I'm worried about Little Broken's chances. So, apparently is Little Broken because he's starting the match on the top rope and won't come down! While the ref picks up Little Broken to bring him down, Tiger Baby gooses the ref! When the ref turns around, Little Broken kicks him in the butt! Ring the bell! (4:32) Test of Strength won by Tiger Baby and he runs Little Broken into the face post. The ref remembers that he forgot to frisk the competitors! He tries to frisk Tiger Baby and gets slapped! He tries to frisk Little Broken and gets slapped! He goes back to Tiger Baby and gets slapped! He picks up Tiger Baby and props him on the top rope so that they can have a face-to-face chat. Tiger Baby slaps him! Cross Body Block but the ref doesn't go down! Chop Block by Little Broken on the ref! Both midgets stomp the ref! With the ref down, the midgets start to wrestle each other. Test of Strength is won by Tiger Baby! Little Broken revives the ref and starts to complain that Tiger Baby is pulling his hair. Tiger tries to give his side of the story, but Little Broken's trick knee acts up! Little Broken drags Tiger Baby to the corner but the Stinger Splash gets nothing but post! Tiger Baby climbs and splashes! One! Two! Thrown off with authority, onto the ref who throws Tiger baby back onto Little Broken! One! Two! Thrown off with authority (again!), onto the ref (again!) who throws Tiger baby back onto Little Broken (again!) One! Two! Little Broken reverses! One! Two! Thrown off with authority, onto the ref, who throws Little Broken over his shoulder! They run the ropes. Tiger Baby points up to something on the Titantron, Little Broken looks up, mistake! The run the ropes again, Little Broken points up to the Titantron, but Tiger Baby takes the cheap shot! Little Broken has had enough and he snap(s!) suplexes Tiger Baby, and goes up top. He runs his thumb across his neck giving Jean! Jacques! Rougeau! time to run-in and pat him on the leg, posting him! Tiger Baby drops the elbow, and gets the pin! Match over at 4:40. (Eight minutes?)
Let's duct-tape Little Broken to a chair and play "YMCA" so that his hair can be cut. Ooooooh! This is making me real uncomfortable. They just keep cutting and cutting, and it's almost like we're watching a rape in progress. The hair cutter finally stops the torture after shaving Little Broken down to a Friar Tuck look, and Little Broken grabs a towel to hide his shame as he runs to the back.
I'm not sure what it says about a promotion, when its best worker, and its best heel is a midget, but it can't be good. In any case, that may have been the finest midget match that I've ever seen.

King Kong Bundy comes out. He will do photographs and autographs in the main concourse after the show. (Crowd cheers.) But... It'll be $10 per person, and none of that Canadian money, "I've got enough toilet paper at home!" Play his music! Hmmmm... maybe the crowd booing IS his music.

Team#1 "at 847 lbs, the Black Stallion Eric Mastrocola, Tank and Crush," comes out to the Godfather theme. Crush is wearing a football outfit, Mastrocola is waving the Italian flag. They are accompanied by the Rougeau's former Quebec manager who says that it's time for the Rougeaus to die so that someone else can take their place.
Team#2 "reunited for the first time in the same ring after 17 years of absence, Armand, Raymond and Jacques, Les Freres Rougeau!" They come out to "Eye of the Tiger" Hey! They're wearing their Fabulous Rougeaus blue and gold fleur-de-lis outfits with the glittering capes! Mega-Cool! The Titantron says they weigh in at 310 lbs?

Armand starts with Crush. Lock-up and Shoulder Block by Armand. Drop Kick and tag in the clean-shaven Raymond. (Man, I miss his porn-star moustache.) Crush poke to the eyes and Tank is in. Head Lock by Tank, reversed to a backslide by Ray which gets two. Tag in Jacques! Tag in Eric Mastrocola! Drop toe-hold by Jacques followed by a surf-board(!). Drag Eric to the corner, tag in Armand and he and Jacques play wishbone with Eric! Tag in Raymond and he and Armand play wishbone with Eric! Tag in Jacques and it's his turn to play wishbone on Eric with Raymond! Crush and Tank run-in for the rescue, but the Rougeaus meet them in the centre of the ring, and let's play wishbone circle. Armand & Raymond run Tank and Crush out of the ring, while Jacques slams Eric over his shoulder to the mat. Tag in Armand so that he and Jacques can double team Eric with stereo wringing arm bars! Stereo Knife-Edged Chops! Tag in Raymond so that he and Armand can double team Eric with stereo wringing arm bars! Stereo Knife-Edged Chops! Tag in Jacques so that he and Raymond can double team Eric with stereo wringing arm bars! Stereo Knife-Edged Chops! Crush and Tank try to run-in for the rescue, but the ref pulls out the rule book to keep them in their corner. Jacques and Eric are running the ropes, but the manager grabs Jacques' foot, and Jacques is your face-planted face in peril! Fallaway slam by Tank! Eric takes back over, but he is reversed into a sit-on the shoulders roll-up by Jacques (One! Two!) broken up by Crush. Crush bounces Jacques' throat off the ropes. Crushes body slams his partner Eric onto Jacques (One! Two!) broken up by Raymond. While Eric preens in the centre of the ring, Tank and Crush take Jacques outside of the ring, and work him over outside. They roll him back in, so that Crush can hit a massive clothesline. Tank comes in, so that he and Crush can double-tam Jacques, but Jacques spring-boards off the ropes hitting a drop-kick on Crush, and a Cross-Body Block on Tank AT THE SAME TIME! (WOW!) And it's the slow crawl to the corner. Armand is tagged in but the ref didn't see it. Tank holds Jacques for Crush to spear, but Jacques breaks loose, and Crush spears Tank into oblivion. While Crush is doing the dance of disbelief, Ray is tagged in. Back-kick to Crush! He bounces off the rope and Ray folds him like an accordion with a punch to the gut. Ray and Armand double-team Back Body Drop Crush, and bum-rush him to the floor. Ray and Armand double-team Back Body Drop Tank, and bum-rush him to the floor. Ray and Armand double-team Back Body Drop Eric, and yes you will believe that an Italian stereotype can fly! Ray goes up top, and Jacques is back in the ring, and he flips his brother off the top rope onto Eric Mastocola! Their old finishing move gets the pin! Match over at 5:05 (15 minutes?)
The Rougeaus leave the ring, slapping hands and the heels gather to lay blame. I declare manager abuse! Eric pile-drives their manager, which in most wrestling circles is considered to mean, "You're Firrrrrrred." Eric motions for the Hart Attack? You know breaking out one of Bret Hart's finishing moves at a Rougeau show is almost guaranteed... Yep the Rougeaus are back. Three way Irish Whip meeting of the minds! Three way face to the turn buckle counted by the crowd! Un! Deux! Trois! Quatre! Cing! Six! Sept! Huit! Neuf! Dix! Three way face to the centre buckle and the crowd proves again that they can count to dix! Drag Tank to the center of the ring! Hold him for his EX-manager to slap. Well, that was disappointing. Non , Non, says Jacques and slaps the manager to show him how. Stephanie Slap on Tank! Throw Tank out, bring Crush in. Weak slap by the manager, and Jacques has to demonstrate again, nearly taking the managers head off. Stephanie Slap on Crush! Throw Crush out, bring Eric Mastrocola, the Black Stallion in. Weak Slap! Testify Jacques! Stephanie Slap with some stink on it! We're finished, no, no, we're not finished! Give Eric a knife-edged chop! Like this? (woo.) No! Like this (WOO!) Like this? (Woo.) No! Like THIS~ (WOOOOO!!) Oh! Like THIS~ (WOOOOO!!)
That WAS a lot of fun.

Match#7 Le Combat des Mastodons!
"From Vancouver at 425 lbs, Earthquake!" OH! MY! GOD! It's John Tenta! I didn't know he was Canadian.
"From Atlantic City at 495 lbs, King Kong Bundy."
Bundy comes out and makes like he's going to slap hands with the fans, but rubs his head instead. (HA!) His entrance theme is "Welcome to the Jungle (the BOO mix)" apparently. He cuts a promo, "Every man fears me!" "QUOI?" The ring announcer translates, "Tous les hommes on peur de moi!" "WHAT?" "Every woman wants me!" "QUOI?" The ring announcer translates, "Tous les femmes me desire" "WHAT?" (See! Sesame Street was right! Bilingualism can be FUN!)

Match starts at 5:10. Test of Strength won by Tenta. Bundy complains about hair-pulling? (HA!) Tenta shoulder blocks barely moves Bundy. Try it again! Bundy will not be moved! FAULT LINE! takes Bundy off his feet! But Bundy eye-pokes to regain control. He chokes Tenta on the ropes. King Kong Knee Drop gets two! Bundy applies the sleeper. Tenta claws for air and makes the baby-face recovery. Tenta Elbow Drop! Tenta Leg Drop! Whip Bundy to the corner! Tenta Splash! It's time to do the Earthquake Stomp! And Tenta sits on Bundy's chest! One! Two! JOHNNY ACE! Whip Bundy to the corner again! It's a Tenta Bundy sandwich with referee filling. (That's got to hurt if you're the ref.) Bundy... leaves... the... ring... and... flees... the... arena... very... very... very... S...L...O...W...L...Y...
Go after him Tenta! No, Tenta wants to prove that he too can count to dix. (Well, he is Canadian I guess he does know a little French.) Winner by count-out: John Tenta, EARTHQUAKE! (Five minutes?)
A count-out? At a house-show? WHATTAGYP! Don't these people know it's Christmas? Besides, what are the odds that we are ever going to see the rematch in Montreal? Not to mention that, nostalgia aside, why in blue hell would we want to see a rematch?

{And it's 5:48 pm Tuesday, and I have to do dishes and laundry before I go out. This would go much faster, if I would only stop going back and editing the recap as I write. Let's see we're up to 6818 words, with one match to go. Well, looks like my record of 10, 173 words for my Born to Bleed recap isn't in jeopardy.}

{It's 11:58 pm Tuesday, and I'm back. Just a little further, for I have pages to go before I sleep. Now if I can only resist the urge to rant. Mind you, it's only a Kurrgan vs Ouellette match, what on earth could I find to rant about?}

Match#8 Kurrgan vs. Carl (Jean-Pierre) Ouellette with Sid Vicious as guest referee.

I notice, belatedly, that a police cordon has been set up right by me, as Sid enters the ring just ahead of Kurrgan, "from Nouveau-Brunswick, at 7'2" and 325 lbs." Now Kurrgan looks like what Big Show would look like if JR had his way. He's so tall, that on him 325 lbs makes him look like a stick. I'm sure that his biceps are bigger than my head, but on a man his size he looks proportionately no more muscular than JJ Rougeau. Kurrgan delivers a heel promo in French, totally insulting Sid, and spitting in his face. Sid hasn't the foggiest clue what Kurrgan is saying. If you're going to insult Sid Vicious, it's always best to do it in a language that he doesn't understand, I always say!
I had completely forgotten that Kurrgan comes from Northern New-Brunswick, which is why they call him the Acadian Giant. Since my mother is also from Northern New-Brunswick, and also Acadian, Kurrgan and me are in the way of being distantly related, Northern New Brunswick not being noted for its genetic diversity. As the heel in this match-up, Kurggan is working with the slight disadvantage that, because he speaks French, the crowd is naturally on his side. Until of course, Kurggan delivers a brillant heel promo which I sadly fail to take notes on, because Kurrgan has succeeded in turning every single Quebecois in the audience against him, and has reminded ME why les Quebecois and les Acadiens don't get along all that well. First of all, les Quebecois think that les Acadiens are back-wood hicks, and we are, but we don't like to be reminded of it. Secondly, les Acadiens tend to think that les Quebecois are a bunch of pampered, whiny bitches. Take the Quebec license plate which includes the words, "Je Me Souviens" on it. Now a literal translation would be "I remember", but the REAL translation is more along the lines of, "...And I will never forget the generations of insults done to us by the English!" The problem with that is that, from les Acadiens point of view, les Quebecois have zilch to complain about. See, when the English conquered Quebec, as part of the surrender agreement, les Quebecois got to keep their language, their culture, their religion, even their system of law, le code civile. Les Acadiens, on the other hand, were lucky to keep the shirts on their backs. Now that's bad enough, but when les Quebecois start complaining about how les maudits Anglais insulted them with the Acadian Expulsion, well our sang Acadien starts to boil a little. It's bit like how the Greeks are always complaining about how the Armenain Genocide was the Turks way of threatening Greece, which it may very well have been, but it tended to affect the Armenians a little more directly. The other reason that nous Acadiens tend to dislike les Quebecois (there are many, but I'm hitting the big trois pour l'instant), is because of the historical shift in how les Quebecois viewed les Francophone Hors de Quebec starting in the 60's. The traditional political opinion in Quebec, call it the Laurier tradition, was that the French language and culture was a minority in Canada, and the best way for les Quebecois to protect their rights as minorities, was to protect the rights of all minorities, especially the rights of francophones outside of Quebec, of whom les Acadiens was the largest group. After the Lesage Revolution Tranquille however, rose the political opinion known as "Maitres Chez Nous", which held that within Quebec, French language and culture was a majority, and the way to keep it a majority was to emphasize the rights of that majority, even if it was at the expense of the rights of minorities. This culminated in a speech given by seperatist Quebec Premier Ministre Rene Levesque in which he said that if francophones outside of Quebec wanted to continue speaking French, they should move BACK to Quebec. (Les Acadiens are of course not from Quebec so why should we want to move BACK there?) I'm sorry, am I ranting? Let me just wipe the froth off my computer screen and continue with the match, merely pointing out in passing that Kurrgan had me so worked up at that point, that I was seriously looking forward to him pounding the snot out of...
To his entrance theme of Bad to the Bone, driving past my seat on his motorcycle with his trophy blonde on the back, Carl Ouellette! Bell rings at 5:25. Carl slaps Kurrgan to gain control and whips him into the corner for a Stinger Splash! and another! He drags Kurrgan outside of the ring, where Kurrgan throws him into the barricade, and then man-handles him into the ring apron. Kurrgan rolls Carl in and chokes him for a five count, and release, and choke again for a five count. Kurrgan Slam! Kurrgan Elbow Drop gets One! and Ouellette's shoulder is up. Kurrgan applies the Klaw to Ouellette's shoulder?! Look, I'm as nostalgic as the next guy, but could you stop pinching his shoulder you big Wuss, and rip his FUCKING HEAD OFF! (Did I say that out loud? Oh dear, now people are staring.) Carl fights off the Klaw, gets up and gets sidewalk slammed which gets One! Kurrgan rams Carl's head into the turn-buckle and hits a huge Knife-Edged Chop that Carl responds to with a positively Triple H size spit sell. And we're back to the Klaw. **Sigh** Will you stop massaging his shoulder you BIG PUSSY, and start hitting him! Can you believe I'm (distantly) related to this guy? Ooh! Kicking the weakened shoulder, that's more like it! And we're back to the Klaw, but Carl is ready and elbows Kurrgan in the chest to counter. It's a short rally though as Kurrgan delivers the Big Boot and follows up with a Power Bomb for One! Two! But Kurrgan's lackadaisacal cover gives Carl a chance to get his shoulder up, and Kurrgan blames Sid Vicious for being unable to count to three. Carl tries to take advantage but he gets whipped to the corner with authority and Kurrgan chokes him in the corner with his foot, Diesel style. Carl fights his way back up and Kurrgan delivers a Knife-Edged Chop. Carl reverses and give me a WOO! (woo.), I said give me a WOO! (Woo.), No, No, a WOO! (Woo!), almost there, one more time, this time put some stank on it, and give me a WOO! (WOO!) Kurrgan is woozy from all the chopping, and Carl knocks him back (but not down) with a clothesline. Three point stance, but Kurrgan is still on his feet! Running clothesline puts him down, Kurrgan pops back up though, and Carl greets him with a SPEAR~! Carl tries to body-slam Kurrgan, can't, so he shrugs, and goes back to the clothesline. Clothesline and back to the well once too many, and simultaneous clotheslinea has both men on the mat. Carl covers and gets One! Two! Carl goes up top and a second rope leg drop gets One! Two! Carl goes back up top and a second rope splash gets KNEES! Alright! Time to inflict some damage on this Quebecois punk! You show him bad to the bone Kurrgan! (Why is everyone backing away from me?) Slingover Power Slam! And why in the blue hell is Kurrgan climbing the ropes? He's 7' 2", he doesn't need to climb! Carl's back up, naturally, and he Power Bombs(!) Kurrgan off the ropes, and climbs the ropes himself to hit a rolling butt drop off the top! One! Two! Sid clutches his leg! Carl helps Sid up, and Sid viciously clotheslines him into next Tuesday. Way to go Sid! Kurrgan has Carl in a choke! Chokeslam! One! Mississippi! Two! Mississippi! Three! Raise Kurrgan's arm! Match over at 5:40. (15 minutes?) Give Sid a microphone! It doesn't work! Give him another one! "Just like everything else in this country, it doesn't work! Carl! Never call me a cripple! Cheer for Kurrgan! Cheer for your Canadian Heavyweight Champion!" (Kurrgan's the Canadian Heavyweight Champion? Since when? He's not wearing a title belt. Mind you on him, a title belt might just look like a really large belt buckle. But isn't Chris Jericho by definition the Canadian Heavyweight Champion seeing as how he's the Undisputed World Champion and all?)
Well, the promos were good, and the right man won, but otherwise man was that an awful pile of suck! I mean I was into the match, maybe a little too into the match, but did Kurrgan really have to spend half the match squeezing a zit on Carl's shoulder?

As for the show as a whole, it had its moments, and one thing that you can count on from a Rougeau show is that the storytelling is top notch. But the problem with a promotion that only runs two or three shows a year is that none of the matches mean anything. There is no belt to be disputed or strived for, it's impossible to build any drama over a series of matches, and it's impossible to tell the kind of detailed story that a regular promotion can tell. The only person in the entire promotion who even pays attention to what happens from one show to the next is Little Broken. The problem is that wrestling is not an environment that thrives on Alice Munro type short stories. Stone Cold Steve Austin may be the most proficient in-ring story-teller in the world right now, and this is not to say that he isn't capable of building a story out of a one-off match, but the richness and complexity of his matches come with the history that he brings with them, and the way that he can quote from his past, and make each match a chapter in the ongoing saga of Stone Cold Steve Austin. That kind of storytelling is impossible in this promotion, making it a promotion that is technically proficient, but ultimately without heart. And that's too bad, because as much as I may slag the Rougeaus, they are the only wrestlers in Quebec with the clout and the mainstream appeal to get a real viable promotion going. Sadly, while they have the ability, they lack the ambition.

Meanwhile, in Chomedey, Laval is headquartered a promotion with all of the ambition in the world, a promotion that has, if anything, too much heart, a promotion that survives not on ability and technique, but on enthusiasm, chutzpah, and lots and lots of blood.

So next time that I sit down at my recapping keyboard, I will turn to my notes, and explain what Acadians, Asparaguses (Asparagi?) and Ass-Whoopings have in common, and regale you with a tale from the Internet Wresling Syndicate that could only be called: Season's Beatings!

{Well, it's 1:48 am on Wednesday morning, and I am up to 9048 words. Can I sleep now?)

Until I next need to battle insomnia by rattling the keyboard,

I remain,

[slash] wrestling

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