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Mangler's Memoirs - Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good Wrestlers?
by Marcus Madison on 2002-08-09

This week’s edition of the memoirs is a topical discussion from that which is I am! Alright so maybe to attempt to act like the divine one is a bit of stretch but let me have some fun with it. I will look different concepts. The concepts of a "bad thing" and that of a "good wrestler" will be the focal point for my comparison. To better illustrate my arguments I will tackle 4 wrestlers in particular. The wrestlers I choose were based on the experiences that they encountered and how their experiences were related cases between what made it both a "bad thing" and in comparison with them being a "good wrestler". Are you following me? Do you see where I am going? Do you have Prof. McEwen? If the answer to any of the previous questions were no then, just humor me and read along. I need feedback for goodness sake.

This argument swam through my head courtesy of good old X-illa himself. Xavier, you really have to stop getting into my head like this it's starting to scare me. So what exactly do I mean by what is a "bad thing". A "bad thing" is negative event or series of events that happen to an individual. The severity of the events themselves will vary but they all have an element of something that is negative themselves. A bad thing can very from being an event that was tragic, or near tragic. The definition will vary from person to person but the argument remains the same.

A "good wrestler" is completely debatable and most definitely subjective. Although since this is my opinion on what a good wrestler is allow me to define to you what I believe one needs to be a good wrestler. When I look at this argument even closer what was intended to being a look at two concepts could in fact be even three. "Good" is described as something advantageous. "Wrestler" according to Webster is defined as a "grappler". A grappler is defined as being someone that takes part in a close struggle of sorts.

Shawn Michaels

A series of events led to the end his career. If it could be narrowed to one isolated incident, we could say that it was Michaels Hell in a Cell match with the Undertaker that was the event in question. The abuse Shawn endured on his back is what the model case of a "bad thing". This "bad thing" that I am looking at contributed to this "good wrestler's" career being cut short. Now keep in mind the case I am tackling needs to be related and so really it needs to involve both a "bad thing" and a "good wrestler" in it. So as I re-ask the question "Why do bad things happen to good wrestlers?" The answer to the question is just about as open debatable. If bad things did not happen to good wrestlers, how would we know they were good? Remember what makes Shawn's experience so bad was because the event itself was what led to his career reaching a halt. Is this to say if Shawn never experienced a bad thing; would not be a good wrestler?

I can see by the somewhat puzzled look on your faces that you’re about a third through this discourse and have no idea of what I am talking about. Alright take a breath, step back and think to yourselves, I need to read this from a completely logical frame of mind. Now remember what I defined as being a "good wrestler" may not be what you define as a good wrestler. These two very different concepts need to be kept in mind. Please also be reminded of my definition of a "bad thing" as well.

Tommy Billington

The Dynamite Kid, endured years of abuse on his back. His shooter style although was not bad, the effects of the events themselves were. So the "bad thing" in this instance he endured on his back. His career was cut short because he was told that the years of abuse he endured on his back and legs, coupled with the abuse of steroids left doctors with no other option but to tell Tom he would no longer wrestler again. What made Tom Billington a good wrestler? Was he advantageous? He did take part in a situation facilitating desired ends: thus being an "opportunity". Billington was all about opportunity. He traveled the world over looking for what was in his best interests along with that of his cousin the late Davey Boy Smith. Does that make him a good wrestler or simply smart? By definition he was a "grappler". He did take part in close struggles thus making him a wrestler. Did being a good wrestler lead Tom to have to endure these bad things? Did he bring on these bad things, and if he did what that still make him a good wrestler?

Owen Hart

The most tragic of "bad things" that happened to this "good wrestler" was death. Death is irreversible no doubt. Although this next comment may gather some flack, I have to ask, If Owen never encountered this "bad thing" would it still make him a "good wrestler"? If we think about it a "good wrestler" is one who gives of themselves. They strive for greatness. They sacrifice their bodies for what they love. Isn't that in some respects what Owen did? The "bad thing" that he did experience ultimately cost him his life. Does this make him any less of a "good wrestler"? Not in the least. The case however is related and is what makes him not only a good wrestler but the recipient of a "bad thing". We are looking at what bad things only good wrestlers encounter. We are not looking at what good things, good wrestlers encounter. The argument can not be swayed. Or it was not to ask, what bad things could good wrestler's have avoided? The question was simple enough and why bad things happened to good wrestlers. Bad things happened to good wrestlers because they are advantageous.

Brett Hart

The recent incident that has brought about this example of both a "bad thing" happening to a "good wrestler" is regarding Hart's career ending concussion followed with his nearly life threatening stroke and. Some may question this choice of a "good wrestler" and say that Hart is not a "good wrestler", why they may say this I have no idea. Although he was self proclaimed the excellence of execution none moved in the ring with such a fullest motion. Was the "bad thing" itself what made him a "good wrestler"? Not at all. His career spanned over 20 years and his matches are what legends are made of. Does the "bad thing" itself illustrate the uncanny ability nature of this argument? I believe it does. Brett's career was cut short precisely because he was a good wrestler. Had he not been where he was at the time of Goldberg's kick, this argument would not be valid. However he was in the ring and the kick did take place. Are the concussion and the recent events of Hart's stroke related? At the current time, it is too soon to tell.

So in a neat little bow, "Bad things happen to good wrestlers because they are good". It seems a bit like a circular argument to say the least but what it is, simply debates the very nature of these two concepts. It will take some time but I will give this argument another go with a slight twist. Why do bad things happen to good wrestlers? I have been wondering that very same thing my self for year.

In the mouth of...
Please send any feedback, what you loved, loathed or even lusted over. Along with any self addressed stamped envelopes with lots of money. Papa's gotta eat you know. To send me your special treats click on the seductive little linky thingy over here ---> How do I reach the winter of your discontent, Marcus?

Marcus Madison.....Still searching for catch phrases through the madness?

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