Manly Soap Opera

When I was a young teen, I was a huge WWF wrestling fan.  Every Saturday I was glued to the TV, my heart in my mouth while I watched my favourite wrestlers in the ring.  I cheered their miraculous rebounds from complete unconsciousness to inexplicable but triumphant victory, and booed the bad guys (usually the less-handsome guys in black) who ambushed my heroes from behind.

Then, about the time I got old enough to take up a few contact sports of my own and simultaneously developed a bit of critical thinking, I realized… WWF (or WWE, as it’s now known) wrestling ain’t exactly what you see on the screen.  Those wrestlers are great athletes; but even the WWE admits that the drama is pure scripted soap opera.

So I swallowed my disillusionment and life went on.

I hadn’t thought of WWF wrestling in decades, but it all came back to me a few weeks ago when Hubby was watching a Formula One Grand Prix.  For those not familiar with (or who couldn’t care less about) Formula One racing, rules stringently control the action on the track as well as the specifications of the cars themselves.

So theoretically, the race is all about the skill of the driver and pit crew; but in fact the owner, team chiefs, and managers hand down directives and dictate the team’s and the individual driver’s strategies during a race.

Let the soap opera begin.

Enter Lewis Hamilton, a handsome (good looks are important) British driver who is currently considered “one of the greatest drivers in the history of the sport”.

But…

Lewis Hamilton is dogged by luck so bad it would bring any normal man to his knees.  His teammates get advantages he’s denied.  His car suffers bizarre mechanical failures.  The management team subjects him to incomprehensible strategic decisions.  I can hear Hubby raving in his mancave:  “Why would you do that?!?  EVERYBODY knows you don’t (fill in management decision here)!”

But poor Lewis just keeps taking the karmic hits, and then miraculously winning by the skin of his teeth.  Or fighting his way back from last place and almost winning, which only increases the drama.

And I said to Hubby, “You realize this is WWF wrestling, don’t you?”

He stared at me open-mouthed.

“It is,” I insisted.  “The handsome, talented guy keeps getting ambushed by some dirty rat, but even though he’s just been hit over the head with a chair and left for dead, he somehow manages to drag himself back into the ring and win.”

I realize that it’s blasphemous for me to even suggest such a thing; but I’m just sayin’… the plot lines are remarkably similar.

Who says men don’t watch soap operas?

 

34 Comments

Filed under Humour, Life

34 responses to “Manly Soap Opera

  1. Michelle

    I am by no means trying to offend anyone, but I’ve never understood the appeal of wrestling. I just can’t watch people purposely hurting each other for entertainment. I find the theatrics lame, even though I know it’s fake and they are very good actors as well as athletes, but they get hurt—a LOT! So no can do. unfortunately that means boxing is out, as well as hockey, because that’s boxing on ice, and all those “try not to laugh” videos are horrid. For some reason this squeamishness does not extend to (American) football, even though it probably should. And racing…. watching cars go in circles for hours, not appealing. Sadly, nearly all of my friends LOVE all of the above. They’re so weird. Lmao! But at least I can watch football with them, and it’s not even mostly about the buff men in tight pants. Nope mostly not about that.

    I’m very glad to hear book 14 is going well and it sounds like you’re having fun writing it so that’s a bonus! Since I haven’t said it this month, thank you for sharing your stories with us!

    Like

    • “…not even mostly about the buff men in tight pants” – LOL! Yep, I enjoy football for the sport, too. 😉

      I don’t mind wrestling because I know they do their best to mitigate their risk and I think they’re performing because they enjoy it. I can understand that – I’ve had my share of injuries from sports and muay thai even though I do my best to be careful, but I love it so much that I don’t want to quit. Some folks just NEVER LEARN. 🙂

      I’m right there with you about those horrible videos. Those poor people are really getting hurt and there’s nothing funny about it to me, either.

      And thank you for your kind words! I am enjoying the writing process as usual, and your encouragement makes my day! (On another note, today I zigzagged into left field and wrote the first pages of what might become a new series… or maybe the beginning of another Aydan book; I haven’t decided which. Life is never boring!)

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  2. I figured out the Wrestling thing pretty quick…still is kinda fun to watch…but I truly missed the boat on racing…my bubble has been popped!! Not really surprised though…everything is about money and money drives the need to pull more and more viewers in…..now if the same were true in football…I’m really going to be depressed….

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    • I don’t know about football, but I’ve harboured dark suspicions about the Stanley Cup hockey playoffs for a very long time. Let’s see, how much money would they stand to lose if the whole thing was settled in one game like the Superbowl or Grey Cup? And it’s truly amazing how often they have to play the whole seven games. But maybe I’m just cynical…

      I’d still enjoy wrestling, too, if they’d just keep their mouths shut and perform. It really is fun to watch!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m utterly convinced that big-money, high-tech, high-profile professional racing is just as phony and fixed and rigged as all that WWF circus is. Look at NASCAR. The so-called Car of Tomorrow (COT) is the same for EVERYBODY now. The cars are all identical. The only difference between manufacturers’ team cars is the paint job and the engine. Puh-LEEZ, okay?

    I used to be a huge fan of lots of different kinds of motor racing. Now? Not so much. When the actual teams get to make only about ten percent of their own decisions, it loses something. Like the ninety percent that makes it interesting. I haven’t watched a Daytona 500 or an Indy in probably thirty years. Same with Formula One. I used to live for that stuff. Not interested now. Their loss.

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    • Pee Ethth, Just checked the Book 14 page. Lookin’ good, kiddo! And just so you know, Ian Rand is always fun to read, too. Just sayin’…

      And BOOK FOURTEEN!! Wow. You done good, sista.

      Like

      • Thankth! I’ve been squeezing in writing time when I’m not sweating myself to near-drowning in the garden (we’ve had highs of 35C/95F here for the past week, which is HOT for us even though I know it only makes you Texans snicker). I’m alternating between using my laptop indoors, where I get too chilly in the air conditioning, and outdoors in the shade to get warmed up again. Looking forward to another big writing day tomorrow, woohoo! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • With the humidity hovering around the same number as the Fahrenheit temperature, too, I’m sure. It’s been ten degrees hotter here, but a humid day in this end of the world barely gets up to double digits. And yes, I’d trade. 🤪

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          • It’s so humid here in the evening, it’s like trying to breathe a soggy bath towel. But I’m not complaining! As soon as the temps go down to about 26C around 9 PM, I’m out on the deck just soaking it up. Ahhhh. 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

    • As far as I’m concerned, they took the fun out of racing when they stopped letting drivers be drivers and cars be cars. If the whole thing isn’t about the most skillful driver and the best-performing car, then it’s not auto racing anymore; it’s just payoffs and politics. Bleah.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. jenny_o

    My eyes have a tendency to roll way back in their sockets when I see WWF wrestling/acting . . . but our son loved it when he was growing up. LOVED it.

    I had no idea racing was similar. There’s another sport that makes my eyeballs roam 🙂

    I sound like a right crochety old folk, do I not? 😀

    Like

    • Nope, I’d say ‘a woman of taste’. 😉 I don’t watch Formula One races, or any circuit-track auto racing for that matter – after the first couple of laps I just lose interest and wander away. I still love drag racing, though, which would probably make most people’s eyes glaze over.

      Like

  5. Well I know nothing about Formula One racing so this comes as a complete surprise. I honestly thought they just drove around the track. Now any time I see car racing I’ll be waiting for someone to get hit over the head with a chair.

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  6. I don’t watch WWF or racing because I am too absorbed in a series called The Donald, set in present day Washington, DC, about a narcissistic, petty, self-centered and incompetent president who veers from one crisis to another seeking revenge on all those who dare to oppose him. I don’t know if it is manly but it sure is a soap opera.

    Like

  7. Drae

    Do you remember Gorgeous George? Or am I. giving my age away again? Good to hear the progress you’re making on the new book.

    Like

    • I never saw any of his matches but I know his name, which is pretty good for a guy who died over 50 years ago. He’s in the WWE Hall of Fame, where he’s credited with making WWE wrestling the entertainment that it is today. What a flamboyant character! Now I know where Elton John got his fashion ideas. 😉

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  8. Barbara V

    You go girl. I can’t stand watching what they call wrestling now. Back in the 40’s I went to the arena in Jacksonville, Fla where they actually wrestled without all the talk and trash they do now. Course it wasn’t showtime like today. probably no money either. As for car racing- all my favorites got old like me and quit. It sounds as if this would make a good story but my heart is still on never say spy books. Get busy woman and finish another I am too old to wait too much longer. But I have always said “I ain’t goin”
    Love your books and expressions.
    Barbara

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    • LOL! I’m glad you ain’t goin’! 🙂 I’m sure you’re right about the wrestling you watched in Jacksonville – that sounds like the real thing. It seems as though everything is scripted and choreographed on TV (and even live) these days.

      And thank you so much for your kind words! I’m hard at work on Book 14 – I just hit Chapter 6, and I’ve been chuckling while I write. It’s so much fun to create scenes with Aydan and MI6’s Ian Rand!

      Like

  9. Hmm, it does indeed suggest a pattern…

    Speaking of wrestling, have you watched the new Netflix series “Glow” (stands for the Glamorous Ladies of Wrestling)? Lots of fun.

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  10. My brother and I were big fans of Rasslin’, but we were very aware that it was just theater. We would often reenact some of the moves. One time I was jumping off the top rope (stairs) onto my younger, smaller brother’s chest. I would land around him, never on him, but make it look like I did and he would groan. Then he would come back from near death to put me in a sleeper hold until I was fake unconscious. It was hilarious until our step mother saw us and started whuppin’ me for hurting my brother. Later in life I was in the business world and one of my customers was the late Verne Gagne who ran the AWA (American Wrestling Association). Over the years I got to meet a lot of the wrestlers at that office like Jesse Ventura, Ray “The Crippler” Stevens, The Crusher, and numerous others. They were quite normal (except Mad Dog Vachon) and most had been college athletes. It was great fun and I still would go to matches occasionally to watch the soap opera. Hey, everyone likes a good story with heroes and villains. to racing be any different?

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    • Why would auto racing be any different? It ate my words!

      Liked by 1 person

    • I loved the Gagnes! I remember Verne, but I can’t remember his (handsome) son’s name. And to tell the truth, I liked Mad Dog Vachon, too. (I still smile at the memory of his inimitable “MADDOGVACHON, GRRRR!!!!” *rends savagely at a piece of kielbassa*) So there goes the theory that all my heroes had to be good looking. Or even, um… normal. Come to think of it, that explains a lot…

      And I’m still laughing about you and your brother rasslin’! It probably wasn’t quite so funny after your stepmother caught you, though. 😉

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      • His son was Greg and he teamed up with Jumpin’ Jim Brunzell and called their tag team The High Flyers. Greg is only three years older than me. Didn’t Mad Dog become a restaurant reviewer in Montreal for a while? I wouldn’t have wanted to disappoint him.

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        • Greg; aha! I had a hazy idea that it was G-something, and now I remember the High Flyers, too. And did Mad Dog really become a restaurant reviewer? That’s fabulous! Maybe he’s the one who pioneered today’s “reality” shows where so-called experts go in and rip a restaurant’s operations to shreds.

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  11. I’m having trouble getting past, “I was a huge WWF wrestling fan.” Seriously? So now you’ve moved on to race car drivers … interesting.

    In any case, yes it’s all scripted. Just wish that the people writing the script of my life would do a better job of turning me into a hero.

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    • Are you kidding?!? WWF wrestling was DA BOMB! It was all about the sport for me. It had nothing to do with all those scantily-clad men with their bulging glistening muscles and… erm, never mind.

      And I feel your pain about the life scripting. I’m pretty sure I’ve been written into the “bumbling sidekick who only exists for comic relief” role.

      Liked by 1 person

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