Wednesday, November 29, 2006
iMPACT! is Decadent and Depraved Part One
It is a strange and disorienting thing to take one's enthusiasm for professional grappling out into the public eye. Safe in the confines of the living room, bellowing drunkenly at the screen, the constraints of modern society fall away. It is not unheard of for our team of correspondents to descend to the level of common beasts, howling and shrieking, leaping about the room like those apes at the beginning of 2001. Sure, we're just doing our Randy Orton impressions, but things can still get pretty nutty. It's easy to forget that there is a civilization outside the squared circle.
Thus, our first week without cable was rather difficult. RAW and SmackDown, we could live without. ECW? Pah. I'm beginning to get hoarse from scoffing at those jackasses. TNA, however, was an altogether different matter. Despite a certain jitteriness (to put things delicately) in their booking, they still put out the best TV wrestling show on the market, and their move to Prime Time was not to be missed. We were especially excited by the promise of the Christian/Rhino barbed wire (!) cage (!) match. Tired and jaded we may be, but massive lacerations and bloodshed still count for something in these modern times.
So it was that the Arabian Facebuster Editorial Staff found ourselves slouching into "The Barn," a rustic-looking drinkery in the posh environs of North Portland. As the saloon door slammed, we were greeted by a thick haze of smoke and a trio of soused Irishmen bulling their way through "Danny Boy." As they ramped up for the coda, one of the lads tottered over to the cluster of old-timers watching CSI at the bar.
"Can you please fuckin' turn off that fuckin' CSI so's we can hear this great fuckin' song?" he queried. "Just fuckin' turn it off for ten fuckin' seconds so we can fuckin' drunk talk jobble jobble mutter sluuurrrrr...."
Things looked grim for anyone wanting to watch a cage match in this joint. We grabbed our drinks and scuttered furtively into the back room, where a second TV towered. It gleamed majestically, gloriously unwatched. We waved the bartender over and began lobbying for our program. She seemed quite amenable, even going so far as to hit the "on" button, but then the St. Patrick's Parade in the next room boiled over. One of the inebriates took it upon himself to purge the Devil CSI and began attacking the television. The bartender raced into the front room to chastise him.
We sulked. The TV was on, showing some unwatchable police procedural. Perhaps it was a "Law and Order" or perhaps a "Homicide." It was certainly not a cage match. We tried flipping the channels ourselves, but who could make heads or tails of this damn satellite business? Why couldn't this bar get magic pixies trucked in along a length of cable like normal people?
The bartender returned, her knuckles bruised and a knot of red hair in her fist. The lads in the next room fumed along to a Pogues/Thin Lizzy medley. A quick stab of a button, and there was Spike TV. And no wrestling.
"Oh," the bartender said, "The satellite's on Eastern Time. Your show started at six." With that, she clomped off to the bar, leaving us to blink awkwardly at the Japanese game show confronting us. We lapped miserably at our beers. There was nothing left to do but get drunk. We ordered another round and began to discuss which road would best lead us to oblivion.
It was decided that, in the interest of adventure, we should investigate the establishment across the street.