Wrestling, yeah?

7 Apr
Or how I should learn the difference between “real” and “pretend”…

Made a bit of a boo-boo the other night. More on that shortly.

So, I went to meet some of my pals from my old work on Thursday evening. It’s a long standing tradition from the old work; because the shift pattern that they work involves an early start on a Saturday, Friday nights are a write off, therefore Thursday is, for them, Friday. If work were like Freeview, the drinking session would be called Friday Night Drinks -1.

Attending Friday Night Drinks -1

(also available in HD) were me (obviously), Big Kenny (his name is Kenneth and he’s a big chap), Paul-who-looks-like-a-young-Robin-Cook (Paul looks like the late former Labour Foreign Minister Robin Cook), and Pompey Frazer (he’s from Portsmouth). The venue, as always, was a Wetherspoons pub in the centre of Glasgow, where the ales are cheap and of varying quality.

Now, it’s always nice meeting with these guys, because work is never on the agenda. The worst thing about going for drinks with people from work is the inevitable moaning about Andy from Finance, or the ridiculous decision to promote Humpty Dumpty to Head of Tralala, or Sheena’s haircut, or the cost of biscuits in the vending machine, or the new workflow involving having to staple peoples heads together. No. Big Kenny, Paul-who-looks-like-a-young-Robin-Cook (herein referred to as PWLLAYRC), and Pompey Frazer (PoFraz?) won’t stand for that shit. We were talking about real, important stuff.

Not Paul


PWLLAYRC wanted to talk about his impending move to Canada. Fair enough, it’s an exciting time to be going. This country is going to the dogs, and Canada is sufficiently far away and new-worldy to offer real change, whilst at the same time being governed by the same Queen that we know and love. No need to change monarchs at the bureau-de-change for PWLLAYRC. No Sir!

Problem is, though, I know next-to-nothing about Canada apart from these FOUR FACTS:

1) Canada is the bit of North America where le French live!
2) Canada was the setting of popular Canadian sitcom “That’s My Moose!”
3) The currency of Canada is the Welsh Pesata.
4) Popular wrestler Chris Benoit is from Canada.

All this means is, I didn’t have a lot to engage with PWLLAYRC about Canada, apart from those four facts, and as a result, I nodded my head a lot and wished him well for the future.

Not Gallus

Not Gallus Cooper

Big Kenny was much the same, insofar that I was unable to relate to his topic of conversation. His big news for the week was that he had been to see an Alice Cooper tribute act at a local nightclub. Apparently, “Gallus Cooper” (he was a Scottish Alice Cooper tribute, do you see?) came on stage with a proper, actual snake, and pretended to execute people. Again, I’m not the most knowledgeable about the Coop, I know he sang a cover of Daphne and Celeste’s “School’s Out”, but that’s about it.

“It was a very visual thing”, mused Big Kenny. I guess I had to be there. Well, be there, and be an Alice Cooper fan. If only those constants were in alignment, much like the stars and the moon, then, then I would have enjoyed it. Again, lots of polite nodding, and I said that I was glad that he had a good time, I guess in a similar way to a mother trying to have a conversation with a 6 year old about their passion for Ben 10 and his eternal fight against the Osmicroyds or whoever.

PoFraz fared better. His big news of the week was that he had seen Wrestlemania. Now, I like wrestling. I have chemical memories of watching it on the telly and thinking to myself “Good lord, this is entertaining!”. Now, I shalln’t lie, I’ve not seen the wrestling for donkeys. The last time I watched it, WWF had just been invaded by WCW, the rival firm as it were, and were made to look like monkeys. However, that invasion fizzled out, and so did my interest. It did give me something to talk about though! I know proper stuff about wrestling! For instance, I know that there’s a wrestler called “Stone Cold Steve Austin”, who is not to be confused with “Bostin’ Steve Austin”, the Fuzzbox album.

“So”, I asked. “Who *won* Wrestlemania?”. PoFraz was PoFrazed (Po-Faced). Turns out it wasn’t just the one match, but like five or something. He mentioned that CM Punk had retained the title, and that one of the current WWF roster was a vegan. He also said that Dwayne “Dwayne The Rock Johnson” Johnson had beaten Cena. I replied that I didn’t know who that is.

Bit of a faux pas, I must admit, when I asked how Chris Benoit got on. “He’s dead.” came the reply. “Killed himself, his wife and kids.”.

Not Alive

Not A Wrestler Anymore. A mistake we could all make.

Now, this was particularly embarrassing as I had heard something along those lines a while back, and had just assumed it was a particularly harsh wrestling storyline. You know, like when in Eastenders, Pat Butcher got cancer, but in real life Pam St. Clement is perfectly healthy, I thought it was a bit like that. “Are you sure?”, I asked. “It’s not a massive plot and he’ll come back with a new wrestling name, Infanticide-Man or something??”.

The look on PoFraz’s face was a sight. He was no longer PoFrazzed. He had the face of a man who wasn’t sure if I was playing an elaborate joke, or whether I genuinely believed Chris Benoit, technically the best technical wrassler that Jim Ross has technically ever seen (wrassling joke), was still alive. (It was the latter).

Luckily, Big Kenny came to the rescue. “He’s only joking”, trying to diffuse an awkward situation. “How about your week, anything exciting happen?”

“Well, I just found out that a wrestler went nuts in real life and killed his family. Oh yeah, and I caught up with the latest episodes of South Park, they’re shit, don’t bother.”

*Based on a true story. Elements have been exaggerated for comic effect, yeah? Paul really does look like Robin Cook.


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