There are many people out there that see professional wrestling as nothing more than actors trying to be athletes. They see it as fake and a waste of time. To me, however, professional wrestling is anything but.
Ever since I was a young boy, I have watched wrestling. I can remember to this day how my father would take me to WCW House shows and we would watch the likes of Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan, and Kevin Sullivan.
I remember sitting in the front room of my parents' house as Monday Night Nitro would come on and electrify the television.
In third grade, we had playground wars where one group would be the original NWO and the other group would be NWO Wolfpack and neither group would talk to the others. My friends and I would go around howling like a wolf and doing the Wolfpack hand gesture. Those were the days.
As I progressed through my childhood, WCW Monday Night Nitro got replaced with WWE's Monday Night Raw. It was Raw that shaped my love for professional wrestling.
Stone Cold Steve Austin would stun anyone in his path. The Rock would People's Elbow and Rock Bottom opponents to victory. The Undertaker's theme song would come on and I would get goosebumps.
I could not wait from the time Raw got over until the following Monday when it would return again.
Some people would call me lame while others continued to tell me I was dumb for watching it. "It's fake," they would tell me.
I did not care. To me, wrestling was an escape. It was a manly soap opera that brought out my competitive spirit and got my blood flowing. I got caught up in storylines. I cheered some wrestlers and booed others. I became a part of the drama.
It is not until now that I can truly appreciate wrestling, though. Whereas I watched it for fun back in the day, today I can truly appreciate the athletic ability that these men and women bring to the ring.
The athletic ability needed for this sport is unlike that of any other sport. The raw athleticism needed to pull off a top-rope finisher or to power bomb a man twice your size is something that requires great athleticism and strength.
I dare you to come up with an athlete that can move around the ring like John Morrison or Rey Mysterio. I dare you to find an athlete so well adored like the Undertaker or Randy Orton. I dare you to find an athlete as big and yet as athletic as Mark Henry or Kane. I dare you to find an athlete that can single handily carry an organization and its fanbase the way John Cena has and does for the WWE. It is not that easy of a task to accomplish.
Granted, the matches are scripted and the winners predetermined, but this guy does not care. I watch Monday Night Raw now and still get that same feeling I did as a young boy. When Randy Orton "RKO'd" Sheamus at Night of Champions, I jumped up and down and yelled in excitement.
Some may call me dumb for being a fan of this sport, but as far as I'm concerned, pro wrestling and the WWE are far from dumb. It is about more than fake or not fake. It is about excitement. It gets my adrenaline going and for that reason WWE will continue to be on my television set every Monday nights for years to come.