Sampson Independent

A fever for some Wrestlemania

“Superfly Jimmy Snuka” bounced off one of the four ropes in the wrestling ring and flew across the floor and ricocheted off the opposite rope before hooking his opponent “Macho Man Randy Savage” with his arm, knocking him to the mat.

The spry young wrestler climbed to the top rope before leaping into the air, showing the boisterous audience he came by his name honestly. Then he plummeted to the Earth to put a major hurting on the fallen pretty boy.

If it was a Saturday morning during the summer of 1985, I was definitely at my best friend Billy Gibbons’ house; and we were watching the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) on the boob tube in the expanded living room — an addition that doubled the room’s size — in his family’s single wide.

Although we watched some exciting wrestling matches every weekend, the aforementioned scenario was actually between my buddy and me. Billy was “Superfly” and I was “Macho Man.”

We would sometimes do reenactments of the action on the television screen by jumping around the room, bouncing off furniture, and wrestling each other to the floor. We always landed in a heap hysterically laughing at our antics.

We typically had an audience of one – Billy’s younger sister, Paula. The only thing is, she wasn’t so enthusiastic to watch our side show theatrics. We always ended up having throw pillows hurled at us from the other living room in the main section of the house.

Our epic weekends always began on Friday when I would come over with my duffel bag to spend the weekend; and it usually included swimming in his aunt and uncle’s pool, pizza and a full lineup of television ending with an action-packed episode of Miami Vice.

Some nights we would camp outside under the stars inside a tent in the front yard; but most of the time we would catch our zzz’s sleeping in Billy’s double bed with our feet hanging off the end of the mattress.

Although my best friend’s dad, Bill, never said a word, his mom, Sandy (Momma G.), usually knocked on the door several times to tell us to quiet down before going to bed herself. And, of course, my comrade’s sister, who was one year his junior, would yell insults through the wall from her room next door.

We would always knock on Paula’s door and run down the small corridor every time we had to use the bathroom. I’m not sure why we ran – she always knew it was us. And, although we knew it was juvenile, it was fun razzing his younger sister. We always knew it would get her goat because she would respond by violently pounding on the wall separating the two rooms.

One time after Billy hammered on his sister’s door and raced back into the bedroom, I nearly tumbled out of bed. I’m not sure if it was Paula’s banging on the wall that scared me half to death or my buddy’s bounding onto the mattress that sent me flying. He grabbed me by the arm before I went over the edge.

We laughed hysterically, which caused Billy’s sister to bang on the wall several more times. With the walls being paper thin, we were surprised she didn’t knock her fist through the plaster.

Paula always got her revenge the next morning by vigorously knocking on her brother’s door to wake us up for breakfast.

After woofing down the mounds of food on our plates and guzzling a tall glass of orange juice, we would both kiss his mom on either cheek as we placed our dirty dishes in the sink where she stood furiously scrubbing a skillet.

Then we made a beeline for the television and turned on our usual Saturday morning wrestling extravaganza already in progress. We wanted to be sure we were in place before Paula had an opportunity

Part of the reason why Paula would hurl throw pillows along with insults at us while Billy and I acted out the wrestling matches on the small screen was because she and I were on again, off again lovebirds.

It was mostly off again; and she was upset that I would rather spend quality time making memories with her brother than playing Spin the Bottle or Seven Minutes in Heaven in a closet with her.

So Billy and I would just pick up the throw pillows and return fire. It didn’t bother us in the least that she was painting her toenails. She started this war, so we were going to finish it. Paula would end up hollering at us while running to her bedroom for a reprieve.

After that was settled, Billy and I would look at each other with wide grins and shake hands before getting back to the main event on the television screen eager to see the next match-up.

Mark S. Price S. Price

By Mark S. Price

Guest columnist