Let me ask you all a question...
How did you stumble upon this article?
A. You were already trolling through Bleacher Report's WWE section.
B. You actually typed "Addicted to Wrestling" into Google.
C. Someone sent you a link to this article after saying, "Hey, this reminds me of you?"
D. All of the above.
Being addicted to professional wrestling isn't a bad thing. It's actually the complete opposite. It shows that you have the dedication, commitment, passion, knowledge and the will to digest (and enjoy) over four hours of weekly programming, pay-per-views, online articles, videos and thousands of archived matches that are available to consume. Some might say your time is spent better elsewhere, but while those people watch dumb "reality" shows, read about wizards, vampires and hunger games, play golf or are to conceited to enjoy anything, we, the wrestling addicted, invest our time into our own passions, hobbies and dreams.
It's not like you needed reasons to know you were already addicted to wrestling in the first place, but just in case you needed a road map to show you how addicted you are, I have devised a handy guide to show you the light.
If you haven't seen the first two parts of this series, you might want to check them out first before diving into the latest addition.
So without further ado, I present to you 20 More Ways to Tell You're Addicted to Wrestling...
If that sentence has ever left your mouth after hearing any song...
...you probably watch too much wrestling.
Heavy guitar riff? Check.
Catchy hook or chorus? Check.
You actually pictured you or an actual wrestler coming out to this song, complete with how the pyrotechnics would look, entrance moves and camera angles. Basically, like you're editing you custom entrance in WWE '12?
Check yourself into a wrestling rehab clinic somewhere immediately.
My Friend (watching me create an entrance in WWE '12): Hey, Scorsese! Quit (expletive) around with camera angels! You've been doing this for an hour! I actually wanted to play.
Me: Give me one more minute. I want this camera to pan out as the guitar riff leads into Shawn Michaels' fireworks while my guy throws up the Randy Orton pose and then runs to the ring like John Cena, but I can't get the Cena entrance without wearing this stupid hat!
If there was one shining moment in my life when I officially knew I was addicted to wrestling, it was the time my mother gave me a WWE magazine in my Easter basket...
That was last year...
I was 25.
That moment was quickly topped when my dad decided to throw his two cents in.
"I was going to get you a Playboy, but your mother said you'd enjoy this more"
...If you've been in this situation, or like to spread the wrestling love to others in the form of wrestling gifts, then you probably watch too much wrestling.
My friend's girlfriend absolutely detests wrestling, so the first thing I'm buying their newborn son is a "Best in the World" t-shirt.
Yup. I'm that guy, apparently.
Speaking of "that guy." If you are considered by your friends, family, co-workers, cell mates or whomever as "that guy," you might need to tone done the wrestling love a tad bit when you're around other members of society.
What do I mean by "that guy"?
We all know "that guy." Hell, you might actually be—you probably are—"that guy." The guy who everyone knows loves wrestling. The guy that everyone thinks about when anything pro wrestling related sneaks into their lives. The guy that is always saying catch phrases that no one understands (Why does he always want me to smell his cooking?), doing wrestling moves on pets, waving their hand in front their face...that's probably you.
If you're "that guy" that throws on Raw or Smackdown on the Universal HD channel during a Saturday night house party, then you have an uncontrollable addiction to wrestling.
I'm begging all of you to keep being "that guy." "That guy" is awesome!
I love "that guy!"
Those cups are about as "souvenir" as those old boxers lying at the bottom of your hamper. They have no value to you after awhile. It's cheap plastic, they start to melt after you wash them too much, I'm pretty positive they change the taste of water and you just paid an extra $3 to stare at John Cena while you sip on your Slurpee...
It's a complete lose-lose all the way around.
How do I know this?
I have at least four (my roommate's fault) that grill me every time I open the cupboard for a glass. Not only is this completely tacky, but if he had it his way (my roommate), the entire cupboard would be full of these things.
My Friend: Dude, why waste money on expensive glasses and mugs when you can spend $4 on a ridiculous-sized cup that comes with a freakin' Slurpee!
Welcome to the generation that graduated college with massive student debt! I'm all for saving money, but not when Sin Cara and John Cena are the first things I see when I go for the coffee mugs at 5 a.m.
Not many people know this, but you can actually prioritize your recordings on your DVR player. Let's say you have multiple shows that are scheduled to be recorded on the same night at the same time. You can manage your settings to tell the DVR which show you want recorded the most.
If pro wrestling is the number one prioritized show on your DVR, chances are you watch a little too much wrestling...and here's why.
There is nothing more frustrating than checking your DVR and noticing a certain show didn't tape. God forbid Raw or Smackdown didn't tape, but if you went out of your way to make sure your DVR, as well as other DVRs, tapes Raw above everything else, then you sir are addicted to wrestling.
Side Note: If you really want to mess with someone, all you have to do is adjust or mess with their DVR settings. It's actually borderline criminal, but when your friend wonders why Raw didn't tape and New Jersey Housewives did, you'll get to see how big a wrestling fan they really are.
...Especially when you're not even provoked.
With all the negative stigmas that are usually associated with professional wrestling, I completely understand why some wrestling fans are paranoid, sensitive or angry when anyone questions their love of professional wrestling.
Here's how this could potentially play out.
Your Friend: Yo, what's going on, man? Long time no see. Where have you been?
You: I was catching up on past episodes of Smackdown and Raw. I had like three week's worth to catch up on.
Your Friend: That's cool. Wanna grab a bite?
You: Yeah, you're right, it is cool! These "performers" put their bodies on the line each and every night for the sake of entertaining hard-working folks who just want some fun, competitive sportsmanship. So sue me if I like to watch "scripted" fights that tell stories about the characters and their problems with one another. Don't you watch Jersey Shore all the time? Yeah, that's real cool, too! You know what else is real cool? Letting other people enjoy what they want to enjoy. At least I commit myself to something. When's the last time you committed to anything? You can't even keep a girlfriend for more then a week! The WWE is purely a form of entertainment for me, and I'd appreciate it if you didn't respond sarcastically to my passions in life.
Your Friend: You, my friend, are an idiot. Good day, sir.
I'm not talking about traveling down the block, the next city over or anything under a six-hour drive.
I'm talking about different states, countries or planets.
My friend and I literally took the road to WrestleMania (aka I-95) from Boston to Miami. We decided that, while flying would be more convenient, driving would offer us hilarious moments in life that we simply couldn't pass on.
The drive sucked, but WrestleMania did not. So it all worked out in the end.
We already knew we were addicted to wrestling, and if you've ever found yourself traveling great distances to see a wrestling event, I've got some news for you...so are you!
0 - 100 miles traveled = No question you're a fan, but not a lot of effort is required to be one.
101 - 500 miles traveled = Yup, you're probably addicted, but you're still in a comfort zone.
Over 501 miles traveled = While driving sounds like a fun adventure, just do yourself a favor and fly. You're wrestling addiction will more then likely spill into other addictions that are needed to remain sane, awake or numb during this journey.
If you spend your hard-earned money on either buying every event live (roughly $55 in the U.S.) or buying the DVD of the event a couple months later ($10-15), then you are freaking in love with wrestling.
Let's do some quick math:
13 pay-per-views (the average amount of WWE pay-per-views a year) X $55 = $715 a year
Do you have any idea what you could do with $715 besides buy wrestling pay-per-views throughout the year? I didn't even include TNA, ROH or any other wrestling promotion that offers similar events. That's a lot of moolah to spend just to watch 13 "sporting" events.
You could subscribe to the NBA, NFL and MLB packages ($550, and nearly a thousand games a year combined), a gym member ship at Planet Fitness ($120) and still have cash left over to order WrestleMania every year...
For some ungodly reason, the WWE thinks that spending nearly $60 a month is financially affordable for families and single adults. I'd rather spend $60 a month on car insurance, student loans, maybe groceries, diapers (if I had a baby) or perhaps going to an actual event. But that's cool, WWE, keep on pillaging your hard-working, loyal fans. And keep on wondering why pay-per-view viewership is down. You're absolutely right, it's probably CM Punk's fault, or the Miz's fault for not drawing enough fans to the event anyway.
I have a strong feeling that if events were half the price, or you could pay WWE.com a flat rate of $300 to watch all the events online, viewership would quadruple in a heartbeat. But what the hell do I know...
I'm just joking. This really isn't a sign of addiction. I'm just trolling the few hundred loyal Morrison fans out there, but just the thought of some of you're reactions when you read that title was well worth it. You guys are always so defensive, which in turn makes you an easy target.
Thanks for being good sports about it!
Let's move on to the real No. 12.
First of all, the fact that you actually know what FCW is, who wrestles for them and the fact that you follow it are all clear signs of addiction.
I don't know how many times I've read the following statements while reading countless professional wrestling articles all across the Internet, but it's enough times to make this list...
"Guy! Seth Rollins is a beast! He's so good. Way better than Santino!"
"Why don't they give Dean Ambrose any love? He's way better then half the Smackdown roster."
Listen. Before everyone starts getting upset, we're just going to have to agree to disagree when it comes to the talent pool in FCW. I understand that a lot of these guys will (hopefully) eventually get the call up to the big leagues, but there's a reason why it hasn't happened yet. I'm sure they're all immensely talented performers, but if you truly feel they deserve a spot over any of the current WWE talent, then you obviously know something that I (and a lot of other people) don't.
This clearly tells me, and the rest of the world, you watch too much wrestling.
We did have an Abraham Washington sighting recently, so at least you can hang your hat on that.
But just for the record, Santino is way better than Seth Rollins...and John Morrison.
Probably one of the greatest things to do on the Internet!
It allows the younger generation to visually view WWE history with the push of a mouse and a couple of clicks of the keyboard. Whether you want to re-live a past Raw, watch the growth of Shawn Michaels from the Rockers to becoming "Mr. WrestleMania," the epic encounters between The Rock and Stone Cold, past Royal Rumbles or dive way back into the black and white days of Buddy "the original Nature Boy" Rogers, if you invest free time into doing any of this, you are simply feeding an addiction.
An addiction to wrestling.
It's quite easy to get lost on Youtube, so if you venture away from professional wrestling and start watching videos of people playing WWE video games, backyard wrestling on trampolines, titan-tron videos, etc, you've gone so far off the ledge that you might as well apply to WWE in order to feed that addiction level.
Sometimes, the backyard wrestling videos are funny, but they are not funny when you are watching them at 3 a.m. in your underwear, in bed with your laptop on your chest...
"I'm Ray Bradstone...and I'm the Chaperone!"
"I'll go to the papers if I have to."
These are classic lines from classic movies...
Only if you're addicted to wrestling, that is.
Quite simply put, WWE films border the thin line between "Wow, that was a pretty bad movie, but I was surprisingly entertained" and "Who the hell green lit this idea." WWE films, as bad as they tend to be, are marketed towards three groups of people:
1. Kids, who wouldn't know what a good movie was if it slapped them in the face.
2. You, the addicted fan who just might purchase the straight-to-DVD crap for $15 at Wal-Mart or K-Mart.
3. Netflix subscribers, who used to watch wrestling, got stoned and saw a movie starring Triple-H while browsing at 1 a.m.
If you've ever said, "Edge is in a movie? I love Edge! I bet he totally rocks at acting! That movie will be good..."
You watch far too much wrestling.
You know what stinks? Being woken up at 5 a.m. to the sound of a buzzer.
You know what is completely awesome? Being woken up at 5 a.m. to CM Punk's, Daniel Bryan's or the Miz's entrance music.
There's nothing like seeing your significant other jolt out of bed when "This Fire Burns" starts punching your ears in the face at the crack of dawn. While they have the "deer-in-headlights" look, you methodically get out of bed, run your hand along the ground and fist pump your way into the shower.
Want to really motivate yourself to get out of bed? Put the alarm clock, phone or whatever plays your alarm all the way across the room and set the alarm song to Kelly Kelly's entrance song. I guarantee you that you'll be up in a hurry and never hitting the snooze button ever again.
Yeah, I know I watch too much wrestling. You know you've either done this or thought about it...Don't lie! No one likes a liar!
If you even remotely know what that title refers to, then chances are you probably could use a vacation from the wrestling world every now and then.
But seriously, if you honestly know a boatload of wrestling holds, have used a wrestling hold on somebody or can successfully lock someone into an advanced hold without having ever taken a class or actually wrestled in real life, then you are seriously addicted to wrestling.
If you only know about 30 holds, but at least 700 versions of the armbar, then you're all set; anything less then that and you're either not addicted to wrestling or you need to pay more attention when you watch.
I've mastered the Walls of Jericho and the Ankle Lock...my sister and girlfriend will attest to that.
I know from experience—and the fact that you can pretty much find the people who are guilty of this by typing "WWE" into the Twitter search bar—that these people exist.
Whether they're promoting their blogs, chatting with friends about Brock Lesnar returning or re-tweeting articles, quotes, pictures or God knows what else about wrestling, they are all addicted to wrestling in some shape or form.
I have Twitter (shameless promotion plug), and I can straight-up tell you I only use it for WWE-related things. So I shamelessly fall into this category along with millions of other people. The second I stop writing, I'll be off Twitter faster then Daniel Bryan lost his championship, but I'm pretty positive the Twitter universe will keep on ticking after I leave.
The WWE loves Twitter, and I'm willing to bet good money that because of the WWE, Twitter gained a lot of users for the sole reason that WWE promotes and uses it a lot.
And when I say "the WWE uses Twitter a lot," I mean, "The WWE shoves Twitter down your throat whether your mouth is open or not."
While this will only apply to a couple people, that doesn't mean it's not one of the most obvious signs of wrestling addiction.
"Uh, Mr. Gullo? What exactly do you mean by Bleacher Report stat line?"
I'm glad you asked. Bleacher Report stat line refers to a convoluted mathematical formula that enables me to tell whether someone is addicted to wrestling based on their BR profile.
Let's say you're not a writer, but you are someone who likes to comment on articles. If you've commented on at least 50 different wrestling-related articles or have a comment total that is equal to or greater than 200, then you, my fellow BR user, are addicted to wrestling.
If you write for BR in the wrestling section, then you automatically are segregated from the "addicted to wrestling" group, but there's another level that's only been achieved by few who dare to achieve this great, "godlike" addiction status.
If you're a writer (specifically for the wrestling section) and are located within the top 50 of anything (reads, comments, likes, comments written), then you, my fellow writing compadre, are truly more addicted than us all. You are the ones that inform us and feed our addictions on everything wrestling related. You are the providers of the drug we seek.
We thank you! We salute you! You know who you are.
Nostalgia: a wistful desire to return in thought or in fact to a former time in one's life, to one's home or homeland, or to one's family and friends; a sentimental yearning for the happiness of a former place or time.
Also known as wishing for Hogan, Flair and Randy Savage to return wrestling to the "golden" age. Another big one is hoping for the day when the "Attitude" Era would come back.
If you suffer from nostalgia when it comes to professional wrestling, chances are you've watched your fair share of wrestling across different decades. This ultimately means you're probably addicted to wrestling. I know many of us wish the current product would be better (isn't wrestling generally better when you're a kid anyways), and while many of us accept the product for what it now is, there are many who still clamor for the "good ol' days" in wrestling.
I'm sure that kids watching this generation of wrestling will one day suffer from nostalgia when Cody Rhodes' son is winning a championship, but that's just how life works. People generally wish to travel back in time rather than enjoy the present.
As Rick Pitino once eloquently proclaimed: "Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair and Randy Savage aren't walking through that door. If they did they'd be grey and old. What we have now is a bunch of young guys who are hungry to succeed. Give me a million of those guys any day. The attitude of these current wrestling fans sucks!"
Some may call this a cop-out.
Some may call me lazy.
Some of you might have you're own signs of addiction that I'll probably never cover over the course of this growing series. I now offer you the chance to share these stories with the world. Let's try and keep it PG, but I'm sure some of you will inevitably bring it down the wrong path.
This was made at the request of my girlfriend, who stated:
"You should offer people a blank slide that signifies the chance to tell their own stories of wrestling addiction. That way you allow your readers a forum to share, expand and grow the series. Also, it allows you to steal their ideas for the next installment if you ever run out of your own ideas."
I love this woman! So please, tell us your addiction signs so that I may steal—I mean give you a chance to share them with the world.
If you're logging on to your bank account and your password is:
...you watch too much wrestling.
If you're logging onto your Facebook account and your password is:
...you watch too much wrestling.
If you're logging in to pay your electric/heat/student loan bill and your password is:
...you're funny, but you definitely watch too much wrestling.
If any of your passwords are the following:
...you need serious help.
It's pretty easy to watch when things are rolling in the WWE like they were at the apex of the "Attitude" Era. It's also pretty easy to tune in when Brock Lesnar F-5s John Cena's face off, but it's not easy to tune in when things go terribly wrong with creative and the roster almost simultaneously.
If you're a current fan of wrestling, then it's no secret that before The Rock came back and rejuvenated the whole thing, things were pretty bleak and depressing in the WWE.
We had "Super" Cena as champion, a creative team that suffered from amnesia and laziness, a lot of younger talent that the WWE had completely no faith in and a lot wondered if we were seeing the WWE pull a WCW.
If you watched wrestling before, after and especially during this particular time, then you are definitely addicted to wrestling. It's pretty much the equivalent of a badge of honor for wrestling fans. You gave up your free time and energy to stay committed to a product that, although you knew was terrible, you stuck with only because you love the source material.
I love people like you. You should be proud. We, as well as the WWE, need more people like you. You are a champion. You are a fan among fans.
You are also addicted to wrestling.
Whether it's being swept up in the emotion of an excellent match, marking out at certain moments or getting goosebumps from the electricity that a crowd can bring to a simple wrestling match (cough, Miami, cough), if you can see or feel the magic that the professional wrestling contains, then you understand the craft. You are able to see beyond the layer of stereotypes and stigmas society places on it, but more importantly, you are addicted to wrestling.
You are addicted to a drug (magic) that only professional wrestling can give you.
I'm not going to elaborate on this a lot more because those who know what I'm talking about are probably already nodding in agreement. It's a certain feeling that only the truest of fans feel and can comprehend what I'm talking about.
Don't kid yourself for one minute; it's magic that you feel. That rush of pure excitement of the unknown, that adrenaline you get as you see someone kick out of a finisher, the smile that it produces when you see a favorite star return, the sadness when someone leaves, the simple art of the holds, reverses, counters and near falls that are perfectly choreographed...
...it's all magic.
So the next time someone rolls their eyes, cracks an offhanded steroids joke, tells you it's fake or just plain hates on professional wrestling, remember that there are millions of you out there that feel the same magic, have the same passion, require that same drug to ease that addiction.
An addiction for wrestling.