You read the title right. This is officially my last column. No joke. No work. No lie. This is it for me. No more columns, no more previews, no more reviews - nothing. I'm done. It's been on my mind for a while and now it's time to write it out. I apologize to those that hate goodbye columns too. Sorry. I couldn't help it.
I don't want this to be all about me, though. This is about wrestling. While I take offense to anybody calling it a sport (if it's scripted it's not sport, end of discussion) I do respect the hell out of anybody ballsy (yeah, I said ballsy) enough to try to get into the business. I can't imagine what it must be like to do, to sacrifice so much and put your body on the line. If you're reading this you're most likely a wrestling fan (otherwise you've clicked on a wrong link somewhere) that knows why we watch it. Sure, we may not brag to people that we watch it or that we know every little thing about every wrestler, but we still watch. And if you aren't watching, you're still keeping tabs on it. You're reading the backstage news just in case something big pops up. Who can forget the fun of last year with people arguing over whether the Lita/Hardy/Edge thing was legit or not and then those same people, myself included, wondering why we should even care about it? There was no logical answer. We're just fans, that's all.
Over the years I've had the chance to interact with so many different types of fans. They were from different age groups, I've got mail from people from age 10 all the way up to this 72 year old man in England that wrote me an eloquent letter about when he would go to wrestling shows with his father 60 years ago. They come from different places around the world and I can tell you first hand that learning about how hard it is to watch wrestling in India makes me feel very lucky to be able to get it on TV every week at the same time on the same channel. That's truthfully the best part about any of the writing I've done. Interacting with people, other fans of wrestling. It's been great.
I had a lot of fun writing about wrestling. I never got paid a cent for it, but it sure was a nice hobby. I was at my happiest as a fan watching a classic match like Michaels vs. Angle and I enjoyed a Rock promo as much as the next guy. I dreaded the bad matches, the bad promos and the bad angles (Katie Vick, whassup?), but I don't think I've ever "hated" wrestling. Sure, I've been offended and insulted a bunch of times. I probably will be the next time I watch Raw, actually. I still watched, though. I may watch less than I did five years ago and I may ask myself "why am I still watching this?" a few times. I'm still here, though. I get the feeling that in a few years I'm going to be one of those guys that doesn't watch weekly anymore and may order a PPV every once in a while if I have three hours to kill on a Sunday night. That time is getting closer for me.
The best time I ever had writing on the net was in the week after Eddie Guerrero died last November. Now obviously I'm not happy that he died and I truly miss him to this day. What I was thankful for was being able to reach people to ask them what they felt about that man. That whole week I posted email after email from people pouring their hearts out talking about this wrestler that left a special place in our hearts even though the majority of us never really "knew" him. That week was tough because we had to go to work or go to school or do whatever we had to do while less informed people would just talk about "another dead wrestler on drugs" or some thing like that. To be able to go on the net, check my email and see over 400 emails writing about this guy I thought that was pretty cool. I thought that was pretty special. When I bundled them up, I emailed them to a place where I'm told would reach Eddie's family and hopefully they did read them, or will read them in the future. That really was Eddie Guerrero week and I'm glad I was able to do my part, even as small as it was, to honor that great man.
I guess it was soon after that where I realized my time writing was coming to an end. I did a year end awards column, but I felt it was crap compared to previous efforts. After writing for so many years it's just reached the point where I felt I've written all I can. I don't like being a part time writer or something like that. Writing once a month isn't good for me. So rather than be that guy that hangs around with only a couple of columns under his belt for a year I'm gonna stop altogether. No returns. No comebacks. Been there, done that. This is it for me. I know it. I didn't even tell anybody about it because it's been on my mind for several months and I wanted to make the decision for myself. In other words, I didn't want to get talked out of the idea.
There are a lot of people to thank for all their help over the years, but it's really hard to name names without leaving people out. What I'll do instead is just say thanks to Rajah for helping us out at the Oratory four years ago when we really needed it. Thanks to Dave and Sean for always working with me. Thanks to the writers that have written on the same sites as me and have shared the same passion of writing that I once had. Thanks to the people that have made me banners over the years and that includes those that made me ones that I never used because I'm a lazy schmuck. Most importantly, and I know this sounds cheesy, thanks to anybody that has ever read one of my columns. Even if you hated it so much (hi Undertaker fans!) that you felt compelled to email me using more expletives than a Denis Leary standup routine I still appreciate it. Any writer loves feedback. Any writer wants feedback. If they tell you otherwise then they're probably lying. If they didn't want feedback they'd write it in their diary. So next time you read a column, email the author to let him know what you thought. Trust me, even a simple "keep up the good work" goes a long way. I even got a kick out of people that would email me thinking I was John Cena. Some people would ask if I was, I'd reply with a quick no and then they'd think I was lying. Others just went ahead, assumed that my email address belonged to John Cena and told me to "kick (insert name of heel) ass" at the next show. What's funny is that probably won't end, so I guess I'll always have those emails.
I'm not sure about the future of the Oratory or Rajah.com as far as writing goes. Since I did come out of the blue with this, I'll talk to the necessary people and go from there. The sites will do fine without me, I'm not worried. All I know is I'm done writing about wrestling. I probably will write about sports at the Sports Oratory even though to this point I've written nothing. Hopefully "John Canton" can make a few appearances though, especially during NFL season (go Rams). I'll probably still be in the Oratory Forums as well, but I do plan to cut back significantly.
Finally, to answer the three questions I've been asked the most: 1) I think WrestleMania X-7 is the best PPV ever, 2) I think Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin is the best match ever and 3) Yes, I think Trish Stratus has a fantastic ass as well.
So that's it. Seven years. Over 400 different pieces ranging from columns to previews to reviews to even a couple of parodies that I wish I did more of. It's been fun. Thanks again for reading the column with the most unoriginal title name in history. The John Report? Ugh, that's just horrible. Drop me a line if you want. I'll still check that email regularly for a week or so and then after that it will be rare.
For the last time, thanks for reading. It's been fun.
Smell ya later,
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