Hello again! My last semester (unless its not, but its IS, right?)! I’m pretty excited to work on this project, and the professional wrestling world seems to be rejuvenated as well after what was a most tumultuous 2022. I mean, on January 4th Kenny Omega and Will Ospreay perhaps put on one of the top… say, ten greatest matches that I’ve ever seen. That could have to do with a bit of recency bias but it certainly was *****/*****. 35 minutes of pure bliss, I was engrossed for every single second.
As for my actual thesis, It’s just a matter of mapping out now. I have a good chunk of it well-drafted, I’m over the hump, now its just time to roll down the hill. I’m a body in motion kind of guy. Rest bores me out and boredom depresses me and depression makes me tired, so the more social and active that I am and force myself to be the more productive and happy that I am! So this project will be a good way for me to stay uplifted, because I intend to make it somewhat of a collaborative effort, or at least a good compilation of various corners of my life.
So yeah, here’s to Spring 2023, and whatever may come after!
My thesis is coming along well! I have most of my Literature Review done, which is arduous for me and something that I find quite difficult to keep my attention stimulated for. A good deal of repetition is to be expected within such an assignment in nature alone.
As for the actual thesis, THESIS, I have forty pages drafted, over half of which are ready to be read by the professor cooperating on me with it. I should have the other twenty finalized within the next week.
More sources have been discovered that I have on my queue to look through, though a good deal may be disregarded because the stories planned to tell are already abundant in number – inclusion all depends on quality. More specifically, the quality of each source as they relate to the thematic tie-in of masculinity (I’ll keep further context vague here because that’s more fun for anyone who may eventually reads it – I don’t like to give things away) that runs throughout my project.
Besides all that, an electronic component is being worked on, and should be completed well-enough for submission in my e-lit course, and perhaps it will be something that I can further deepen later on within the following semester.
This pic is so tough whenever I see it my motivation goes ^^^^
So there is this prompt that is automatically provided each time I type up one of these blogs, and I just decided to actually focus on it now! I’ve been doing these for a good while, so why not?
This one is “list five things you’re good at.” I’ll do three!
Getting Random Bursts of Writing Vigor: A little known secret about me is that I rarely put things together piece by piece. Fortunately, despite the fact that I only write when such a tasks feels like the exact thing that I want to do in any given moment, that moment always comes before an assignment is due. This is not to claim that I don’t revise and edit and trudge through arduous aspects of writing when needed, but to write stuff I need a spark. I can almost feel it build up over time, like, “in 5 days I’ll be ready.” It may come sooner, or after, but my guestimation is never far off. Like working out, I just do what feels right. So I’m good at seducing my muse is what I’m saying if you think that way.
Marathons: I touched on this prior, I’m good at trudging through the arduous aspect of writing, of which can simply be writing a lot. Whenever I run I literally run until I puke, no stopping. I guess the pain makes me feel alive or something edgy like that, whatever, it is eye-opening stuff. Writing is the same way, but I gotta be careful. On Saturday I came in with that burst mentioned prior, but a thought fly came to mind, and rather than writing about my thesis I wrote about people that mean a good deal me. Right here, right now. I didn’t even notice that six hours went by. Gotta be careful more often I guess.
Writing to Music: This one may be a bit of a cop out, but it is really important, because I always write to music, which reflects. If I’m listening to a 15 minute tool song with gradual builds and near-orgasmic/through gouging climaxes, my writing may represent this quality. If I’m listening to a Tyler, the Creator track from his post-’17 era of substantial quality, expect something flowery, more symmetrical, curious, even sentimental idk. I can guide influence well without it being intentional, but organic. This is my favorite aspect of my writing.
A little something different for this week, but how my week has gone regarding my thesis writing is all there, maybe not in a super direct way. but sometimes I gotta have a little bit of fun with these or I’ll feel like Groundhog Day (1993) and that ain’t the wave.
Okay, so, any mental blockage that I’ve been experiencing has just … faded away! I am rejuvenated and ready to go into Full Gear, mainly because I attended AEW’s Full Gear PPV event, and it was probably the best time that I have ever had at wrestling show. This claim doesn’t even stem from the fact that I sat second row ringside at the Prudential Center, or that my friends were present in the venue as well, but because the show was phenomenal. It was everything that AEW fans needed post-All Out (where the show has been missing that “special,” ELITE something).
I have written about 35 pages worth of material, 33 of which are considerable in quality – still not what I would claim as “ready,” but I wouldn’t mind letting a professor read them, for instance.
That stated this past class has really helped me to weave together all of the fragmented stories, moments, and aspects of the professional wrestling craft that I want to focus on together. There is a stronger emotional core here and depth of my own person than I even realized. Sometimes it is such a benefit to show considerate and good people a more open side of yourself. This is something that I have sheltered myself from for a long time, but I try to be more a part of what lies outside of my shell in a sincere and vulnerable way.
Here’s to the most depressing time of the year, optimistically!
I have been contemplating adding illustrations to my work, but am still working out the mechanics of formatting, consistency, and continuity. However, here are some VERY rough sketches of what I have (there’s about 30 pages of these but I’ll be reserved with what I include here).
My decision to include visual elements to this project comes from my YA Lit. course, being that a great deal of the stories that are so formative to my professional wrestling journey, that I intend to include here, would be heavily aided by such.
This week has been one most unavoidable, as it just happened, it just went on by. I did a good amount of writing, I know that, but none of it feels like it is on par with my usual (well, I’m starting to doubt what is my usual anymore) status, my usual state of being. I am struggling to write about new ideas, and most of what I am doing seems to circle back to the same exact topics, the same exact stories, and the same exact spiral.
I have been a bit moody, notably. I notice this when other people call me out on it, and it makes me feel like an ass – I do not like to bring a room down. I do not like to know that I am down, and I do not like to be down. Despite my sardonic and harsh nature of speak … I am a bit of a shortened Richard at times, I like to come from a place of love, even if tough, or brutish. I am really struggling to convey new ideas with writing. At least comparatively-so.
I do not feel like I am superbly at the state of consistency that I uphold myself to. If I am being at all honest in the slightest, I cannot point my finger on what a consistent me is anymore. A good chunk of big bursts I have crammed and forced in the name of I have to do the thing, but where is my passion, where is my grit, where is my soul?
I am in some sort of boredom state, I have to be, and that is a wired needle swimming throughout my fleshy brain. I need something new to rejuvenate my spirit. Is it academic? I think no, but perhaps that can guide me there. This is not a situation that I would call dire where I’ll hunt out some therapist for hire – I gack – not will it eviscerate my entire fire.
But I am dimly lit.
There is something that I feel a door of embarrassment around, something that I want to avoid and can’t really let out. Something that I am in doubt that I will catch, something that I doubt is looking hard enough to catch me. I have written and rewritten, and drawn and droned upon recollections of my past, but progress just ain’t coming past in a way that feels fast. Excitement and passion are all aflown – is that even a word, the duck do I care – and I am simply doing by. I am simply being am.
Do I need a clean slate? Do I need to be caught? Is this a guarded battle to be won, or even fought? What do you make of all of this? Because I really don’t know.
This past week was exhausting to manage, as Halloween is the closest to a “big deal” holiday that I celebrate – it is actually the only one that I do, celebrate. The lords of darkness or whatever deserve respect too, y’know. ANYWAY, I went to a New Japan Pro Wrestling show in Time Square this past week, and it was … pretty mid. The card was to be a surprise sorta thing, which I thought was to fit into the Halloweek theme that was advertised for the show, but it was really just an excuse to have a few of their big names on the card, and then just a bunch of American indie guys. It was absolute filler, which is a shame because NJPW is kinda-sorta the big gold standard of the craft, and I didn’t REALLY get the NJPW experience live. That would have been extremely important to me, and to a specific chapter that I want to include in my thesis. Oh well, ya gotta adapt.
I do have second row seats to a massive AEW show this month, so that will probably be the best experience ever, and be one that deepens my appreciation for the physical toll of professional wrestling, and how physical language is such a pivotal part of the conviction of this craft.
I almost finished a chapter, it just needs some tweaking and a revision, but I’m excited to move onto the next one, which I think could either be a breeze or a challenge. I’m debating either writing about the history of the art-sport or a fragment of my journey with it – or maybe even something random from my bullet point list of topics. Just anything to further spark my movement for this project, because a body in motion … may get hit with a dropkick every once in a while but if you’re not willing to keep moving than you’re down for the three count, y’dig?
Aghhh this one was pretty hard for me to get through, I’ve lost a good amount in the past few years, two of which were two of my absolutely favorite people. Neither were soft blows, and both were incredibly brutal to watch – life degraded and decayed these two so suddenly right in front of me, and there was nothing I could do. Or could I? I think so. I don’t know though. Shit is really hard. It was fucking ugly.
Every single time I see a picture I break down a bit inside. I went to the movies and a character had the same name as one of them. This past weekend one of my best friends checked on me after the film to see if I was okay… two hours later and that was the first thing that said friend asked. Said friend didn’t even sit near me, they saw no reaction. But they knew that these wounds still fucking tear. I’m spilled open, defenseless.
I can’t even imagine compiling such an e-lit work for one’s own mother, I don’t know, I suppose that it’s therapeutic. I have pictures of my last moment with one of my two big losses on my phone, and I will never delete them, but I try my best to scroll past and avoid them. I just found an old camera from high school, it’s crazy how much has changed in 6-plus years. Those two are ghosts in that roll.
The pictures here are tender, joyous, and admirable. They represent simple slice-of-life joys and organized social activity based on – the photo. These photos were taken well before the digital camera boom, so I suppose that taking a picture was a cool thing, exciting, lively! An all eyes on us or me or them sorta thing. Now ghosts of a past.
I can’t even finish reading a majority of the text involved here, it pressures me to put my own – their own – horrors into words. That scares me. I still, more than two years later, wake up with a wet pillow whenever I dream about them. Sometimes I can’t see with any clarity when I open my eyes because I guessuppose that I cried too much. There is that search, neverending. Where some have the capability to obtain some sort of closure through creating, I have no idea where to search for mine. Fuck. You’re literally to my right, in my room. I can’t even look at you, guilt is a bundle of hard shit.
I’m going to submit this, roll over in the opposite direction, and go to sleep. If you aren’t in my life when I wake up tomorrow, please don’t visit me in my dreams tonight. I’m not in the mood to run away right now. I just can’t take it.
I really don’t have much to type about for this past week. This blog in particular I’ve waited on just because I really don’t want to think about the past week, I just want to look forward toward the next one. I had a bit of an extended ripple effect related to what happened to me last week, but nothing close to being as intimidating as that, but besides that I’ve been compiling digital resources to coexist with some more personal aspect of my writing. Events that I’ve lived through.
I have almost ten good pages, twice the resources as last week, and about three-plus good note pages (which are more rough draft pages than they are note pages). But yeah, just another week indeed. It went by fast, and it wasn’t uneventful, but I can’t recall much regarding the specifics of it.
One thing that is driving me nuts, actually, is that there are some quotes from professional wrestlers that I remember from certain interviews and/or documentaries that I’ve compiled and filed in my head over the past 17 years. The catch here is that I have to shift through them all to find them! For the most part I’m pretty good at catching them by skimming through them thumbnail-style, but for some I don’t even remember the interview or even doc sometimes. It’s like a Where’s Waldo maze. Kind fun, but that little stripe-fit guy can be a real pain sometimes.
This past week has been my most successful one yet! Not only have I got some writing done, nothing stupendously major in size because a great deal of it consists of blanks that need to be filled in with research, but really the content is worthy of a pretty solid chunk. Like, a really good chunk, and it is the sort of stuff that sparks my energy mucho – so I can type it productively and time-sufficiently … when I get the chance to sometime within the next few days.
I planned on getting this portion done this past weekend to show it to my Independent Study professor ASAP, but a very frustrating circumstance occurred that really fucked me over as much as it fucked over my productivity. Sorry for mixing blunt execution with vague context, but it is one of those kinda situations (I’ll gladly explain in person).
I have acquired and annotated a good number of articles, with great, no … excellent aid of my Independent Study professor. Some really interesting stuff that will aid me certainly with the more beyond, deep in the past, sorta historical stuff that very well influenced the wonderful art sport that my thesis revolves around. Two of them being articles (one quite lengthy) titled “Roman Arena: A Monument to Culture – and to Barbarity” by Stephen Bonnycastle and Whig Kingston, and “Spectator Consumption Practices at the Roman Games” by Yuko Munowa and Terrence H. Witkowski. Oh, and a book (that I have yet to dive into) titled Death and Renewal by Keith Hopkins.
Unfortunately the Kean Library did not have that book, I think it was stolen because it showed up in the system, so I had to snag a used copy off of Amazon. It didn’t break my bank, comparatively. I have also read some of my ideas and bits of writing to my peers, all of which have given it glowing comments that really lifted my mood – and the visual components that I am thinking about adding (despite being kinda primitive and not superb artistically) were awarded praise of personality and relatability, so yay!
Going forward I am a bit distraught by the unfortunate circumstances that occurred over this past weekend. Many bad people exist unseen, and can attack from great distance. Shit sucks. I am still motivated to move forward.