Tuesday, April 20, 1999
SLAM! Wrestling Guest Column
To catch a phrase
A while ago, I was sitting at the Jim Rose Circus, just watching and enjoying the entertainment. Then, out of nowhere, Mr. Rose himself states that this trick has been done in front of the millions, and millions of fans. Later, he was telling his contemporaries to Know Their Role. I, along with several other members of the audience, finally realized what was happening when Rose used that famous word, 'Jabroni'.
While not exactly the most unexpected place to hear references to catch phrases and actions by professional wrestlers, this incident was by no means the first. From the NFL to NHL to the English Premiership, there are continual references to professional wrestlers, their actions and yes, even their very own words.
I've become accustomed to hearing and using such phrases as "D'OH!" and "Yada Yada Yada" in normal communication, a tribute to those television shows which have gained massive popularity. But to hear phrases from wrestlers, those bulky, sweaty men and women, who have supposedly no impact on society other than to make money by doing the equivalent of lip-synching in colourful underwear is well, most encouraging to me.
The popularity of wrestling has been beyond anyone's expectations. When ABC confided, albeit not on the record, that the Oscar telecast was moved because of wrestling, many fans only nodded in agreement. That was the right thing to do -- move rather than lose. There are continual hints of the mainstream networks creating alliances with the wrestling federations and guest spots from wrestlers are becoming more and more common. Soon, Hollywood will be infiltrated with wrestlers performing serious roles, not just those agreed to by Hulk Hogan.
To add to this incredible movement is the relative failure of protests against professional wrestling. Not even so-called scientific studies can make a difference to the true popularity wrestling fans. Professional wrestling has left its place of ludicrousness and is in the mainstream to stay, at least in the short term. No matter which federation succeeds in the ratings from night too night and week to week, the end result is a victory for those, both in the business, and watching from the arenas and homes. The adoption of language and actions from wrestlers only solidifies this victory.
So, the next time you hear a phrase from a professional wrestler or see an action that immediately reminds you of wrestling, don't be shocked, rather, be proud of wrestling and never give up your faith. After all, there's millions...and millions of fans out there, just like you and me.
Jason Tetro is from Ottawa, ON, and can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.