Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Most wrestling fans that have studied their history or followed the business for more than 10 years are familiar with the infamous WCW debut of Fred Ottman as “The Shockmaster.” The unscheduled tumble he took as he crashed through the wall only to fall flat on his face, is considered by many as the quintessential screw-up on live TV; at least, among those that took place outside of the ring.
There isn’t a person over the age of five that hasn’t experienced embarrassment in one form of another. As we get older, we are naturally going to accumulate more events of this type. Upon reflection, they will cause us to wince. Eventually, when we relive these episodes after enough time has passed, we can wind up laughing and shaking our heads … just what the hell were we thinking? In most instances, the “pain” is fleeting and we carry on, hopefully having learned something along the way. What’s the point in making the same foolish mistake again and again?
So, even though that momentary sense of humiliation was definitely unpleasant, it’s just one of life’s many reminders that none of us is perfect. I'll go so far as to proclaim that we actually NEED them occasionally. Why? Because when we take a pratt-fall, we gain something valuable that we should remember and apply when next confronting similar circumstances. Ideally, we’ll be more informed by those lessons we've already experienced.
So, I ask one and all not to ridicule Mr. Ottman but to give the man a break. Unfortunately for the former wrestler, his mortification took place in front of a million or two viewers. Even worse, his brief act of buffoonery has been preserved on tape and can be viewed anytime on YouTube. Still, there comes a point when the humor has passed and cruelty sets in.
The fact that I've just written the above has very little to do with me. Having now picked myself up after dozing off in front of my computer, causing me to come a-crashing down to the floor (the back of the chair banging me on the top of my head during the journey), I’m already starting to accept that I’ve just received a valuable lesson.
Well, I will once the excruciating embarrassment wears off…
Be back soon!