by Steve Meyerson
EDITOR'S NOTE: Steve Meyerson is a renowned adult educator and a long-time supporter and occasional contributor to this newsletter. WT&N always welcomes readers' letters, articles, clips, and of course, memories.
1) My first live show at the Elizabeth (NJ) Armory. Main event was Bruno Sammartino, Bobo Brazil, Haystacks Calhoun over Dr. Jerry, Crazy Luke, Eddie Graham in 3 out of 5 falls.
2) Being shut out of wrestling in the 60s at Madison Square Garden. An archaic New York State law barred anyone under 14 from seeing live wrestling.
3) Saturday night Battle Royals in the living room for the TV, with dad (Jackie Gleason Show), grandmother (Lawrence Welk Show), and myself (WWWF Championship Wrestling from Washington, D.C.)
4) Being a total mark for Spiros Arion's debut in 1968 where he joined his scheduled tag team match in progress due to a late arriving plane from Greece. He immediately saved his partner, Antonio Pugliese, and pinned heel opposition to win the tag title in his first WWWF match.
5) Watching televised wrestling from Los Angeles (Lucha Libre) in Spanish throughout the 70s. Seeing it live at the Olympic Auditorium in 1980 while vacationing in L.A.
6) Producing four issues of a primitive newsletter called Coastal Wrestling (New York, Florida, and Los Angeles news) in the late 70s. We tried selling it in front of MSG, but sometimes couldn't even give it away.
7) Marking out at a WWWF spot show in the late 70s in Totowa, N.J. for the tag team of S.D. Jones and Haystacks Calhoun, and ring announcer Gary Capetta.
8) Discovering the Wrestling Observer while vacationing in Florida in 1987. Dropping my Observer subscription ten years later.
9) Taking a gentle bump from Bruiser Brody in Florida (1987) while standing on my ringside chair as he ran back to the ring during a brawl around the arena with booker/wrestler Kevin Sullivan.
10) Being a newsletter contributor in the early 90s. Wrote columns, articles, and letters for Pro Wrestling Sushi (Jeff Mullins), Ringside Reflector (J.D. McKay), Pro Wrestling Torch (Wade Keller), Wrestling Observer (Dave Meltzer), Rod's Reflector (Rod Leighton), Wrestling Forum (Jon Gallagher), Chairshots (Barry Rose), Arena Report (Ron Lemieux), and WT&N.
11) Feeling bad that Ross Blair, John Gallagher, and John Arezzi ceased publishing and kept subscriber money. These heel editors damaged what I felt was a newsletter community.
12) Newsletter reader FOR LIFE. I still get Torch, Perspective and WT&N.
13) Seeing wrestling evolve from good over evil to kids and steroid superheros to Degeneration X and the NWO. Observing the move from live gate to closed circuit to PPV. Watching the shift from syndication to network TV (WWF Main Event) to cable Monday night wars.
14) Shocked by the comeback of the wrestling business over the last two years. Predicting Roller Derby style extinction and seeing full houses, profitable ratings, and successful pay-per-views.
15) Watching wrestling change from a secretive carnival fraternity to Internet smark semi-shoots.
16) Intrigued by the magnetic attraction of wrestling. Going away from it, but always coming back.