AS I SEE IT - 10/10/2001
Some Thoughts on Chris Adams and Follow-Up on Last Week
First... last weekend, the World Class Championship Wrestling curse struck
again as "Gentleman" Chris Adams was shot to death in Waxahachie, Texas, after a
fight with an ex-roommate who has claimed self-defense.
Far too many from World Class Championship Wrestling have passed on far too young: David, Mike, Chris and Kerry Von Erich, Gino Hernandez, Buzz Sawyer, and Rick Rude directly or indirectly from drug use... Terry Gordy from a heart attack... Scott Irwin from a brain tumor... Jeep Swenson from cancer... Ralph Pulley from AIDS... Bruiser Brody murdered in Puerto Rico... and now Chris Adams.
I'd rather remember Chris Adams for his work in World Class, than remember him for his problems with alcohol and drug abuse.
Living in the northeastern United States, I only got to see a limited amount of World Class; which aired alongside Bill Watts's UWF on the station that is now the Philadelphia UPN affiliate; unfortunately only running for a couple of years in a great three hour Saturday night block of WCCW, UWF and Power Pro Wrestling.
But I can remember watching Adams's hottest angle years later when ESPN reran classic World Class shows; including the classic Adams-Hernandez/Von Erichs hair vs. hair match at the Cotton Bowl on October 6, 1985, with Adams and Hernandez getting their heads shaved in mid-ring.
Rest in peace, Chris...here's hoping that you and Gino, the Von Erich boys and all of the WCCW alumni are in a happier place...free from the demons that plagued so many of you on this earth.
As for this week's column...I certainly heard from enough readers about last week's.
Amazingly, there were actually people who defended Bill Goldberg after last week's column. I received a number of e-mails from people who defended Bill Goldberg against what I said last week...excerpts of which follow:
"...the more that it is shown that the wrestling community is helping those victimized by the events of September 11th... that it appears that the wrestling community is helping out far more than many of its critics who claim a monopoly on morality... all the better.
But for Bill Goldberg to take a shot at the WWF was unnecessary and totally disgusting....
...Three staffers from WWF New York are missing and presumed dead, at least one of whom was an intern at the World Trade Center...
...A number of those that work for WWF Entertainment, Inc. had family members that worked around or who live in the area...all of whom came out safely, except for the staff at WWF New York. But many of the workers were worried about their families...and weren't able to get home to New York due to the problems that followed the grounding of United States air traffic by the FAA and the consequent passenger backup.
Duane Johnson has recently done public service promos airing on TNN and elsewhere as "The Rock" for the Red Cross on behalf of a WWF-Red Cross campaign to donate food, money and supplies.
The WWF also donated 180,000 pounds of clothing for the rescue workers at Ground Zero within the first 48 hours after the tragedy.
But Bill Goldberg had to take a shot at them all...
...Instead of paying attention to those facts... instead of paying attention to what actually happened... instead of paying attention to the fact that New York City officials didn't want to turn the mass grave of thousands into a media circus... Bill Goldberg instead used his "good deed" as a chance to push his grievances with Vince McMahon on his website.
Such a comment casts a very large shadow over what was apparently a good deed that may have given some peace to emergency workers badly in need of it.
Perhaps even as large as Bill Goldberg's ego.
It seems that no matter what, some people within wrestling can't avoid using events to put themselves over."
Some of these critical e-mails were thoughtful. But sadly, many others were almost knee-jerk anti-WWF in their response. You'd think that wrestling fans could lay aside their personal opinions about wrestling promotions and personalities at a time like this...but apparently not.
Fortunately, there were many more people who found what Goldberg said to be as distasteful as I did...and then some.
While Bill Goldberg finally got around to apologizing late last week (many have suggested the bad PR he received being the real reason); it doesn't change one bit what he initially said... without bothering to determine the facts in question...and the hurt it may have caused to those within WWF Entertainment, particularly those who knew the three WWF New York employees missing and presumed dead.
Following the Goldberg firestorm, Jim Ross reported in last week's Ross Report that many WWF performers are scheduled as part of an organized effort to go to the World Trade Center "Ground Zero" area this Sunday, October 14 (the date of the next WWF Madison Square Garden house show), with other performers going to various NYFD firehouses. "Several thousand" tickets will also be given away to the children and spouses of police officers, firefighters, and EMS workers who lost their lives.
Police officers and firefighters will be invited to the show as guests of the WWF as well. Ross reported that there will also be various other functions at WWF New York that day, briefly mentioned on Monday's RAW.
As I said before, I think it's commendable that the wrestling community is involved with the September 11 relief efforts..far more so than most, if not all, of their critics.
For wrestling fans and readers of this column who would like to help the victims of September 11th, you can do so via the following means:
Those in the Keansburg, NJ area (in Monmouth County) can attend a wrestling show on November 3rd, at Keansburg High School sponsored by NWA-Jersey in association with the Keansburg Police and Fire Departments. It is designed to benefit the agencies involved with aiding the victims of the World Trade Center disaster. Tickets are available by calling (732) 888-1704. Golden Ringside tickets are $18.00, Ringside tickets are $16.00 and General Admission are $13.00. You can also get more info about the show here.
IWA Mid-South Wrestling will be holding special Wednesday night benefit shows on October 10, 17, 24, and 31 for the Fire Department of New York Scholarship Fund. The shows will be held at the regular IWA venue, the IWA House of Hardcore in Charlestown, Indiana. For further information on these shows, you can go to the IWA Mid-South Wrestling website here.
Combat Zone Wrestling has designed a special t-shirt, with proceeds going to the September 11th relief effort. You can purchase this t-shirt at CZW events, call (856) 848-5070, or contact CZW at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Carolina Wrestling Federation together with Alamance County, NC fire departments are co-sponsoring a special pro wrestling event to raise funds for the families of the fallen heroes of the WTC tragedy.
"Tribute" will be held 7:30 pm ET Saturday, October 13 at the Ray Street Recreation Center in Graham, NC (between Greensboro and Durham). All ticket monies will be donated to the New York City Fire Department Relief Fund.
You can get information on this benefit here.
Philadelphia-based Liberty All-Star Wrestling has undertaken the "In Liberty For All Drive", with stars of L.A.W. having made fundraising appearances across the Delaware Valley leading up to the
"In Liberty For All" Show this Saturday in Philadelphia.
This is a fundraising drive to be be sealed until intermission of the October 13th show. Proceeds will be split between the September 11th Fund and the World Trade Center Relief Fund. Any questions relating this campaign can be directed to L.A.W. promoter Bay Ragni at email@example.com or their website here.
To give blood, call 1-800 GIVE LIFE or contact your local hospital/health care provider. You can also find the telephone number and location of your local Red Cross chapter by going to this URL or to this URL
You can financially support relief efforts by making a donation to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund by calling 1-800-HELP-NOW (1-800-435-7669) or 1-800-257-7575 (Spanish-speaking).
You can go to any one of the many organizations listed at Helping.org.
You can also go to Amazon.com to make a direct and secure donation via Amazon.com.
You can donate directly to the September 11th Fund, administered by the New York United Way via this URL.
You can donate to the New York Firefighters 9-11 Disaster Relief Fund, administered by the International Association of Fire Fighters via this URL.
Until next time...
(If you have comments or questions, I can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org)