IN AUDIO: Me and Tennessee

A few days ago I mentioned that an article I’d written had been published in the new Fair to Flair Quarterly, which you should definitely buy. (Click here) The theme for this issue was Live Events, and my piece was written on an indie show I saw in Tennessee a few years ago. I found it emotional to write. The people, places and the event it details were and still are very important to me, both personally and as part of my ‘wrestling fandom’.

The version you’ll read in the Quarterly, however, is quite heavily abridged. While it had to be cut for the journal, it’s important to me that the full, unabridged version is available too. I wanted to do something a little different, so I’ve recorded a reading of my original piece. You can listen by clicking on the media player below. For those who can’t get the file to play, who don’t have time to listen or who just don’t like the sound of my voice, I may upload a downloadable text version to this post within the next few days.

Enjoy!


 

 

 

diolch, thank you etc

A short Christmas message to thank you for your support and to remind you not to kill your relatives. Enjoy…..


GUEST POST WEEK: the welcome back voicemail

Guest Post Week is over. We’re back in the confines of the Cardiff Wrestle Bunker, so I’ve recorded a little voicemail to celebrate our triumphant return. This one has bonus quad bike sound effects for good measure. You lucky, lucky people. Enjoy!


HAPPY 1ST BIRTHDAY TO US!

So this is it. A whole year of Wrestlegasming. Pretty cool, eh? Set the fireworks off, send me expensive gifts  and drink champagne til you feel too tipsy to walk home. Technically, I didn’t purchase the Wrestlegasm URL until 11th April, but the first posts I wrote started the week before Wrestlemania 25, so in wrestling terms, this blog is a whole year old. In the grand scheme of the internet, it’s just a baby. But I’ve seen so many blogs come and go (especially wrestling blogs) so I’m very proud that it’s not only still running, but that it’s evolved and grown within the last year too.

That's how it looked as a newborn.

That's how it looked as a newborn.

I used to have another wordpress blog where I wrote about general topics of interest; TV, sports, music, popular culture. But it never really generated much interest. It was mainly just a space for me to write about things I enjoy. I didn’t really care if anyone was reading or not. Then I  started writing about wrestling and it was so much fun, it seemed like there was nothing else for it but to set-up a wrestling blog.

I’ll be honest, I didn’t expect to run it for more than a few weeks. Writing about one topic, I figured I’d get bored quickly and ditch it. I was wrong. The thing about wrestling is that there’s so much material, it’s impossible to be bored for very long. Sure, it has slow weeks. Slow months, even. But that’s how it goes with any soap opera/sport. There’s always something new just around the corner and as a source of comedy wrestling is a comedian’s dream. Sometimes, I almost feel like a fraud. It practically writes itself. I won’t keep you here too long. I find all this self-praise a little nauseating. But I did want to have a swift look back at how we made it through this first year.

BLOG WAR ’09

If you were around at the very beginning, you may remember that this blog started with a war. Those boys over at LOL,Wresslin’ accused me of plagiarising their picture of Dave Batista and, just like many an international incident, it was founded on lies and blown way out of all proportion.

Total coincidence. I swear.

Blog War ’09 took flight and ran for a couple of months. Things got quite messy. I even found a My Little Pony head in my bed one night. *SHUDDER* I’m not entirely sure who won the war. Scratch that. I totally won, with my British wit and superior military manoeuvres. But we’re all good friends these days and even though they’re keeping a low profile at the moment, both Adam & Matt are all-round good chaps.

CROTCH WATCH

Ah yes. Crotch Watch. I have a love-hate relationship with Crotch Watch. It was certainly popular but after a while I just felt a bit silly writing about the trouser-meat the male wrestlers were packing. It all started when CM Punk wore some particularly revealing lavender coloured trunks at the end of April. Their light hue made his moistness a little more obvious than the standard black trunks. From there, I was hooked and a total sucker for CM Punk. That tiny triangle of spandex below has a lot to answer for.

Anyway, Crotch Watch has since gone to the big blogging playground in the sky, but I’ve replaced it with Strut, Pose, Turn – the new fashion segment. Here’s the first post in case you missed it. There will be a new fashion post up later in the week, but for now I like to think the spirit of Crotch Watch lives on in all of us. *weep*

ADVENTURES IN AUDIO

By the time the summer rolled around, I felt like I wanted to try something new. The natural progression seemed to be a podcast, but I was so terrified of my abilities as a host, I couldn’t even bring myself to call it a podcast. I just called it an audio post, recorded it, posted it and hoped for the best. Thankfully, the response was overwhelmingly positive and I’ve done a few more since then. I even started to enjoy them.  I’d love to record something weekly, but timing constraints don’t really allow it. All being well, I’m hoping to recap Wrestlemania in podcast form, but we’ll have to see if my body and the technology co-operate. Cross your fingers if you just can’t make it through life without listening to me chit-chatting about wrestling.

THE DEAN

Autumn into winter was a busy time, starting with the (fake) arrival of Honourary Dean – Matt Striker. I felt that I needed a mentor to guide me through this Wrestlegasm journey. So I (fake) interviewed him, gave him the job of being Honourary Dean of Wrestlegasm and helped him to move into his (fake) office in the Cardiff Wrestlegasm Bunker. I then asked him to write a little report on his first few days in the bunker. If you don’t understand the genius of Matt Striker and why he and Wrestlegasm are such a good match, you can click here. If you’d like to read his report, just visit The Dean’s Office at the top of the page.

Not my fingers, BTW.

As he’s preparing for Wrestlemania, Matt can’t be in the bunker this week for the birthday celebrations. He did, however, send me one of his signed trading cards by way of a birthday card. Look:

Rumours that I bought this card on eBay a week ago are a complete fabrication!

COOL BRITANNIA WEEK

Memories, memories. The WWE tour the UK just twice a year and this time around I was able to go to two shows. This sparked Cool Britannia Week, where I recorded every sordid detail of the shows I went to, meeting Gail Kim and Kofi Kingston, the TV recaps, my post-wrestling blues and a special Favourite Crowd Members. It was an amazing week and I still can’t believe I was just six inches away from running my hand over HHH’s torso. I just couldn’t  quite stretch my arm that last few inches across the barrier.

So close, yet so far. (img: property wrestlegasm.com)

You can read all the posts by clicking here, scrolling to the bottom of the page and gliding your way back up through one of my best weeks ever. The second Cool Britannia Week takes place next month. Sadly for me, the WWE didn’t see fit to come across the Severn Bridge to Wales this time around. :( But I’ve arranged some alternatives that should make CBW II loads of fun. Besides, I’ll get to live vicariously through Sidekick Andrew, who’s popping down the road to Manchester to watch a spot of Smackdown. That leads me nicely on to……

NO LONGER AN ISLAND

It gets a bit stressful running a recap-based blog by oneself. There’s a lot of work to do and if you throw in trying to be hilariously funny every week too, it’s nice to have someone to share the load with at times. With this in mind, I started persuading my artist/designer friend Andrew that he should put his immense wrestling knowledge to good use and start recapping ECW for me. It took a lot of persuasion, but he eventually agreed to be my sidekick. He’s now part of the Wrestlegasm furniture to such an extent that I’ve forgotten what it’s like to blog alone. It’s great!

Ummm. He's very shy. And not actually gay.

Of course, ECW is no more, but Andrew now does a marvelous job of recapping NXT. We LOVE NXT!!! Also, being the complete indie wrestling geek he is, he may start guiding those of us who cling fiercely to the mainstream (including me) through the largely uncharted waters that are indie wrestling. He’s made a start by writing a spectacular new post entitled Wrestlegasm’s Top 10 Female Wrestlers. The link takes you to part one. The second part should be up towards the end of the week. You can read all of Andrew’s posts by clicking here, scrolling to bottom and reading your way back to the top.

AND SO….?

To be honest, I’m still pretty stunned that a year has passed already, so to think we’re going into year two has taken me somewhat by surprise. The hope for year two is to continue to entertain you, to try and come up with new ideas and to stay completely in love with wrestling, even when it does me wrong.  In the immediate future (meaning this week) the aim is to post something new every day until Wrestlemania, to thank you for a whole year of support. This will include some regular features, some recaps and a few of my favourite WWE moments from the past year. So, from me to you……..

Thanks for reading through a year of Raw, Smackdown, ECW, NXT and PPV recaps. Thanks for listening to the podcasts . Thanks for the piles of comments you’ve left. Thanks for following my Twitter account and making Tweeting through the PPVs at stupid o’clock in the morning so enjoyable. Thanks to the people who wrote guest posts. Thanks to Adam & Matt for being super-cool and (much as I hate to say it) teaching me about comedy. Thanks to Andrew for being the bestest sidekick ever. Just….thanks. I hope you’ll stick around for year two.  *HUGS & KISSES*

One final note. During the same time that I was getting Wrestlegasm off the ground, a fine fellow named Razor was setting up Kick-Out!! Wrestling. In blogging terms, I like to think of Kick-Out!! as my more sensible brother. If you’re looking for somewhere to read unbiased and entertaining commentary on wrestling, regular radio shows and a plethora of recaps, Razor’s your man. I know how difficult it can be to keep a blog running for a year, so congratulations to Razor on a year of fantastic content.

Actually, THIS is my final note. Sorry. Couldn’t resist!

royal rumble voicemail – LISTEN LISTEN LISTEN

The one where I plug my collaborative live Royal Rumble blog with LOL, Wresslin’, announce that Crotch Watch is taking a very long hiatus, mention the forthcoming one-year anniversary of Wrestlegasm and say “cool” and “ummm” way too much. Someone buy me a thesaurus for my birthday.


pre-christmas voicemail

I thought I might leave you a very brief pre-Christmas message, just because I know you miss my accent so much. I totally forgot to mention Matt Striker as The Dean. Oh well. You know how I feel about him anyway! Here’s five minutes of your life you’ll never get back…….


bragging rights: wired for sound (maybe)(doh!)

Dear Wrestle Fans

As promised, please find attached my Bragging Rights recap in audio form.  Please leave feedback as you see fit.

Kind regards

Ray

PS—-> I apologise for the quality of this audio file. I did a very stupid thing while recording, which I refuse to give details of for fear of ridicule from audio snobs. A hard lesson learnt. Please be kind. I’m still learning how to do this stuff.