For many Americans, the Thanksgiving holidays conjure up two memories: food and sports. We all know about the food. And the opportunities to watch sports this weekend are never-ending, with college and professional football, college and pro hoops, hockey, and this year, for the cherry on top, the World Cup. I always felt that one of the master strokes of those who invented baseball was the fact that it wasn’t played on Thanksgiving.
These days I don’t spend Thanksgiving watching sports contests on television, but something in the deep, dark recesses of my memory was jolted when I came across the following sentence, which included a link that I had to follow.
Jim Jordan and Marjorie Taylor Greene must have Kevin McCarthy in a “double chickenwing camel clutch” wrestling hold.
What in the world is a Double Chickenwing Camel Clutch wrestling hold, you ask? A Thanksgiving pseudo-sports memory from my childhood gave me a clue, so I followed the link to the website for professional wrestling holds (yes, such a thing exists) and found that answer. Along with a whole lot more.
A wrestler stands behind an opponent and applies a double chickenwing. The wrestler then forces the opponent face-down to the mat, sits on his back, and pulls backwards, stretching the opponent’s neck and upper body backwards.
Let’s be clear. Professional wrestling is not a sport. It is more cartoon performance art. And yes, people take the time to not only come up with these names, but then to apply them to the scripted moves that make professional wrestling what it is. There is the Leg Hook Camel Clutch and the Deathlock Octopus. Plus the Ring Rope Chinlock. Not to mention the Chickenwing over the Shoulder Crossface.
It is a whole ‘nother culture out there, folks.
As I wrote in a 2017 post that, to this day, explains the Trump presidency better than anything else I’ve seen, I grew up on the fringes of that pro wrestling culture in the South of the 1960s. I watched Tojo Yamamoto, Jackie Fargo, and other professional ‘rassling heels and stars on local television with my grandfather and cousins long before there was a WWE. Since we usually gathered at Mamaw and Papaw’s house for Thanksgiving, this holiday brings back those memories.
And this is, frankly, just another excuse to repeat my favorite pro wrestling story of all time.
Tojo Yamamoto took his name from two World War II enemies and played up the evil foreigner to the hilt, especially throughout the South.
“Wrestling in Boaz, Alabama, Yamamoto gave one of the great performances in pro wrestling. Before the start of the matches, he asked to give a statement to the crowd, which booed and hissed and threw things. In broken English he said, “I wish make aporogy. Very sorry my country bomb Pear-uh Harbor.” And the crowd quiets, as he wipes away tears, and they awwww in sympathy. “It wrong thing to do, I wish not happen.” They begin to applaud. “Yes, I wish not happen, because instead I wish they BOMB BOAZ!!!” Needless to say, the arena erupted.”Wikipedia
Maybe someone should use the Tilt-a-Whirl Headscissors Takedown on these crazy MAGA-types in Congress. I’d pay to see that!
More to come…
Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay
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A few weeks after I posted this article, Oliver Willis wrote the insightful “How Pro Wrestling Explains American Politics.” Check it out: https://open.substack.com/pub/oliverwillis/p/how-pro-wrestling-explains-american?r=43ta3&utm_medium=ios&utm_campaign=post