Meeting Lone Wolf or The Night Dreams Came True
...and I no longer run with the Pack
In Response to The Rezhood Redemption
- The Rezhood Redemption
(Author's note: If you're interested in more subjective observations from a small reservation on the Arizona-New Mexico border, please read "Sion & Straley," "Rez Dogs" and "Holmes Mitchell." Thanks...
Memories were Stirred
I enjoyed the above linked piece, Rezhood Redemption. Rez politics aside, it is hard to truly appreciate that which is the small-town professional wrestling spectacle without taking it in first-hand.
While playing small time college football, in-season Friday nights were reserved for "family fun night." At St. Joseph's College, this normally included watching the 240 lbs. "Hammer" lead our volleyball team to the cusp of victory before losing "her" ability to elevate late in the last match. This would be followed by the screening of some 80's testosterone-fueled "classic" such as Highlander, Red Dawn, or Vision Quest. Friday's at Hanover College meant Mr. Gatti's Pizza (think Chuck E Cheese without the pedophile in a rat suit or animatronics) and the type of horrible high school football only southern Indiana can produce.
One week late in the '97 season, Coach Perry (HC) informed us that he had arranged for a very special treat. We were to leave our Friday night walkthrough and report directly to Shawe Memorial High School. I didn't know much about Shawe aside from it was a Catholic school in Madison that didn't play football. That meant first and foremost that they couldn't be trusted and also that I had no idea why we were going there (a Catholic school with no football is like a fat vegetarian - something's amiss). My fears were quelled upon walking into the gym and finding before me the fabled "squared circle."
I would imagine that the scene in Shawe's gym was very similar to the one described in the link above. There could not have been more than 450 folks in attendance. Some examples from the demographics of the crowd would have included the following: 98% male, 80% possessing a prior, 40% viewed the event as a possible job interview, 25% high school educated, 25% playing in a football game the next day, etc. It was an interesting group to say the least surpassed only by the star-power found on the card. There were not one, not two, but three World Championships on the line that evening (Heavyweight, Midget, and Tag-Team - that's right we got the full midget treatment on the first visit). Unfortunately, the quality of the "entertainment" wasn't exactly up to Vince McMahon's standards. It was a little bit worse than the fight scenes between Clubber Lang and Rocky Balboa (and no where close to anything resembling Thunderlips). Don't get me wrong; it was still highly entertaining. We cheered and jeered as the non-descript jobber got worked over by the Villian in the heavyweight match. We howled as the Evil Midgets came into the crowd to accost and intimidated several of the middle-school aged patrons. We rose to our feet to engage in some doctorate level banter with the Evil Tag Team's manager. However, nothing could prepare us for what was to come. The Good-Guy Tag-Team (the challengers) came out not as a team but one at a time. First the Golden Eagle entered the ring. He came out with his face fully painted in a tribute to the Ultimate Warrior and donning a wing/headdress outfit that closely resembled the Bald Eagle from the old Muppets TV Show. It was easily the most ridiculous thing I had ever seen. Then the lights went out and the opening guitar lick of the greatest Bocephus song ever recorded echoed through the gym's PA. He was really here, The Lone Wolf. He emerged from the hallway, deeply tanned, his curly mullet freshly greased, wearing a pink and black spandex singlet on. Strolling deliberately to the ring, this guitar-weilding Kenny Powers look-a-like had the crowd at fever pitch. The climax came as he perfectly timed his entrance between the ropes with Hank Jr's wolf howl. It was sheer pandemonium. Twenty minutes later, after sacrificing two metal chairs, a pint of blood each, and more than a few tears, our heroes emerged victorious!!
The whole night was great, but the fact that The Lone Wolf was there pushed it over the top. He was perfect in every way, finally ending our many arguments over which was in fact the quintessential Bocephus song. How could you argue against a song that had produced such a champion? Well, I suppose you could concentrate on the fact that the Lone Wolf needed a tag-team partner, thus cheapening the entire message/spirit of the song. At that point, I'd just punch you in the face repeatedly until either the cops pulled me off or I passed out from exhaustion.
I can't remember a night where I laughed so much, so hard, or so long. Rezhood Redemption helped bring back a lot of my own great memories. Thanks for your time.