It’s been a little while since I have been to a live show. I miss the feel of being a part of something special and having almost a mystic experience that is shared with thousands of strangers. I remember slapping hands and hugging total strangers back in 1999 when my brother took me to Roy Wilkins Auditorium to watch Jerry Lynn win the ECW Championship. Out of all the shows I have attended, that has to be the best. I wanted to be a part of a live show again. Mainly searching for a smaller local event, I began browsing the events list on Craigslist, which led to browsing postings of wrestling merchandise with which my fellow fans were parting. One afternoon, I came across this wanted posting:
Hi. I am desperately looking for 4 tickets to the WWE show on Sept. 5th, 2009 at the Excel Energy center. I am looking for ring-side seats. These tickets would be such a great surprize birthday present for my boyfriend and his 2 sweet little girls who all love wrestling SO much. I can only afford 250.00. Please let me know as soon as possible if you have these available. Thank you.
That posting reminds me of how much joy professional wrestling can bring to us when we just have fun with it. Fans of baseball, football and other sports have their collector’s items, as do fans of movies and other entertainment medias. Wrestling is no different. I decided to explore craigslist a little further to see what else is out there that which our fellow fans have decided to give up.
For $20 I could buy a never-before-worn Triple H shirt. I opted not to.
One salesperson was selling a decade-old set of TV Guides with Goldberg, Hollywood Hogan, Steve Austin, The Rock, and Chyna gracing the covers. These were being sold in sets of four for $50 a set. That may sound ridiculous to some, but others would go nuts over it.
As some of you know I live in Minnesota and Jesse Ventura is a legend among wrestling fans in my state. That’s why it wouldn?t seem unreasonable to some to pay $100 for Summerslam 1999 on DVD, complete with a Time Election magazine, program, autographed photo, VHS tape of collected media coverage hyping Ventura’s involvement in the show, a Summerslam T-Shirt, a fan’s ticket stub, and a used (yes, used) Jesse Ventura air freshener (yes, Jesse Ventura air freshener). If you wanted to go a cheaper route with Jesse, you could get a set of three dolls of The Body/Mind for $20, still in their original packaging. While there isn?t a Ventura in wrestling attire, you still have the Navy Seal, the Coach, and the Governor.
I felt bad for one individual who was giving up everything he owned that was wrestling related. He and his brother had spent their childhood collecting action figures. They had over seventy figures plus rings, setups, and weapons. Now because of college costs he was giving it all up to put towards education. Obviously there are times in our lives when we have to move on, but it’s not easy to just hand over your childhood to a stranger, let alone to put a price on it.
Now some of you may not feel the way these people do. To many people, especially with wrestling, collecting merchandise is just silly. What do you do when you bring a date home and they see a replica title belt on your shelf? When they or a friend or family member ask you what that belt on your shelf is all about do you just say ?Oh that’s my Undisputed Champion of the World Title Belt?? To other people they just can?t comprehend how you can spend money on this stuff, especially when they learn you spent anywhere between $250 and $400. Some have even given me a funny look when they see my Ultimate Worrier collector’s figure still in his original packaging. Well, the way I see it there are a lot of people in this country that throw money down the drain on whatever their hearts desire. I say let a wrestling fan keep a title belt on their shelf.
I decided to check out other states to see what they had. Here are some of the cities I checked out:
Mobile, AL: Really nothing at all. I found three postings when I typed in ?wrestling.?
Baltimore, MD: An autographed Hulk Hogan Action figure’signed by Jimmy Snuka and the Patriot, not Hogan.
Santa Fe, NM: Not a whole lot for sale, but someone posted that they had some items stolen. The items actually belonged to a local wrestling company! Someone had made off with a pair of boots and a championship belt.
Detroit, MI: Wrestlemania 23 ringside chair for $150. I actually have my ringside chair from Wrestlemania 19. After the amount of money my friend Shane and I spent to ship our chairs from Seattle to Minnesota, I don?t see us giving those up. I always think of Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho and being there live to see Steve Austin wrestle his final match.
Jackson, MS: Classic footage from the 1970s Memphis Wrestling Studio. Now that is a find.
New Hampshire: A collections of thirty nine wrestling magazines from the mid to late 90s. These included PWI and its sister publications, and WWF.
These are just a few of the postings I came across. It’s amazing what people have out there and the different stories they must have behind each one of their collected items.
She wanted four tickets to a wrestling show. A surprise birthday present for the boyfriend. Two little girls that she loves dearly. Just so happens a couple nights later, the following posting strolled on over to Craigslist.
I am selling 4 tickets for wwe wrestling 9/5/09 at xcel energy center at 730pm. These RINGSIDE tickets are located in section W2 row 7. I am asking 50$ per ticket and offering FREE SHIPPING. However, I am not breaking these up and will only sell all 4 tickets at once.
As the weekend drew closer there were more and more tickets up for grabs. I hope she found her tickets.
I was hoping to go to the show this weekend and do some literal notes from the nosebleeds for next week’s column, but I have made other plans with my family. My in-laws are coming to visit and we are having a birthday party for my niece. I guess if I were to miss a live show, I couldn?t think of a better way to do it then kick back and split a bottle of wine with my father and brother in-law, with the Ultimate Worrier exhibited on the shelf.
Have you seen some interesting postings for wrestling products or posted/purchased some yourself? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org.