Dr. Tom Prichard's 2005 Year End Column
By Dr. Tom Prichard
What a year. I hate moving but I like the location we’re in now. We moved across town in Sevierville, Tennessee with a much better view of the Smoky Mountains. In the process of moving the hard drive on our computer got fried and I am using my wife’s laptop to eek out one last column in 2005.
I thought about doing a year in review but I’m sure the “experts” will be doing that. So I want to touch on some things and thoughts that carried me through 2005.
Finding myself around the Tennessee independent scene was interesting. I hooked up with Ricky Morton and had some decent matches in some interesting places. I am admittedly jaded, but still amazed at the so called promoters and “rasslers” that claim a world championship but wrestle in two towns with a combined attendance of 60 people. I watch some of these guys and wonder what they must be thinking and if they’ve ever seen the inside of a gym. I guess it’s like playing flag football on Saturday afternoon to them. They get a nice shiny belt to show their mommas or girlfriends and tell everybody they’re “rasslers.”
One thing that gets me too is when I hear somebody say “I’m 30 year old and I got big plans for around these parts.” 30 year old? Isn’t there supposed to be an “s” in there? 30 years old!! I’m beggin’ these guys to get a clue!
Ah, well. Contrary to popular belief I really don’t hate anybody. I might not like very many people but hate is just a waste of time. I look around and am trying really hard not to rush to judgment. I know we can be here today and gone later today.
This past year I lost my Dad, Mom, Chris Candido and Eddie Guerrero. We will all face the final bell one day but what we do in the meantime is ever so important. I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life. I’ve finally learned that’s what life is. You’re born, you screw up, you make amends and then you move on. Everything happens for a reason. I keep telling myself that. I am finding out it’s true more times than not.
I may not always understand what the intent or purpose of a WWE show is but I do know that the pride and respect shown on the RAW Tribute to the Troops is sincere. I can’t help but still feel proud of all those guys and girls who go over and entertain the fighting men and women of our Armed Forces. No matter what you may think of the product at times, WWE does a great job when it comes to supporting our troops.
When I did camps in 2005 I did my best to explain about the basics and fundamentals being the most important part of having a solid foundation. That and attitude will get you a lot further than knowing how to do 7 hurricaranas, 12 planchas and 41 moonsaults.
I had the pleasure of attending The Boogey Woogey Man Handsome Jimmy Valiant’s wrestling camp in Shawsville, Va for a book signing and training session. I have watched and known Jimmy since the early seventies when he wrestled in Houston for Paul Boesch. It was an honor to wrestle him later when we were both in the Memphis territory.
Like most veterans from that era, Jimmy has the philosophy that the business should be fun and attitude is everything. I really enjoyed his camp and Hall of Fame he has set up on the grounds. It is a wrestling fans dream with pictures from the last four decades on the walls of every major Superstar to come down the pike. And with Jimmy on the grounds at all time he will take time to talk and answer any question you have. Check out www.Jimmyvaliant.com for details on the camp, his book and much more.
Of course I still think OVW is the best place for beginners, intermediate and advance wrestlers to hone and refine their skills in Louisville, Ky. Rip Rogers and Danny Davis, like Jimmy Valiant, have old school values and teach the “little things” that have become such a lost art today. Once you understand why you are doing what you’re doing this business is a lot more fun and interesting. Check out OVW at www.OVWrestling.com for details and information on their latest classes.
I can only hope 2006 brings good health and happiness to those I love and care about. My wife is still with me after all my mindless and senseless buffoonery. I have been knocked and cussed out more in 2005 than I can remember. But that’s OK. I go back to these so called “promoters” and “world champions” in two towns and I just consider the source. After all, I’m 46 year old and I never thought I’d make it this far. I’m really one of the lucky ones. I’ve lived my dreams and seen a lot more than I could have ever imagined.
I hope I find something to motivate me to get writing again. To be honest I really haven’t felt like sitting at the computer since Eddie passed away. A friend passed on a letter from Jamie Cooper in Richardson, TX that had a picture of Eddie, Jamie and I taken at 6:00 AM November 15, 2000 in the Indianapolis airport. I would scan it but I haven’t learned how to do that yet. It really is a small world and you never know who you’re going to come across. I believe in karma. I believe you reap what you sew.
I used to hate Christmas and all it stood for. I don’t mind it as much these days. I’m around people I like and we’re going to have a great time. I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Stay safe out there.
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