Archive for the ‘Social commentary’ Category

What is rock music? At the core, its history and its origin?
Well, for anyone who has ever done any homework whatsoever into the roots of rock, into its rich background of years past and the groundwork that its early fathers laid down, you’ll know that that the answer lies in rebellion.
Rock has always been the voice of the counter-culture.  It has stood against the widely-accepted norms of the day.  It’s been the voice of dissent in the face of the bullshit propaganda lines of the day. Whether it was the Vietnam War, the televangelist money-mongering of the 1980s or the political agendas to go claim oil from other countries at any expense, rock music has always toted the banner of counter-statement. And so it should, for rock music itself was founded as a voice of rebellion.
Sex Pistols

The Sex Pistols. Would they ever have meant a damn thing if they’d been PC?

For decades, rock was exactly that: the inconvenient message that bucked the system and pulled no punches in doing so. It was riding the edge of the razor blade. It was, as Gene Simmons from KISS said it should be… dangerous. Yes, rock HAS to preserve an element of danger to be viable and potent.
All of that was fine and dandy for years upon years. It was what was expected of rock. Everyone knew the name of the game. Hell, many even tried to plagiarize the agenda, making it come off as cheesy and absurd at times. But then came the modern era that we now find ourselves living in and everything… and I mean EVERYTHING changed.
Rock lost its grit, its soul. It lost the spirit of rebellion in the hopes of artists appeasing the social media masses, towing the company line of modern day thought and mass social conditioning, all under the haunting fear of social media backlash. In pandering to the social justice warriors and accepted public opinion and social pressure, musical artists themselves changed with the times. They forgot their roots. They forsook their heritage.
It became more important to get likes and follows and re-posts than stand as a bastion of counter-culture. The fear of getting blackballed and labelled whatever the social justice neophytes of the day like to throw around as easy shame tags created a play-it-safe atmosphere of toothless, soulless, non-confrontational pop. Hell, even the much-ballyhooed black metal acts became redundant, beating on the dead horse of anti-Christian sentiment long after our western world became as secular as anyone could ever hope for. Indeed, rock lost it’s identity.
This all brings me back to something that I recall a lady named Kristen Mulderig telling me back in 2013. Kristen – the manager for Slayer, Bullet For My Valentine and Ghost – told me as we were sitting down for supper one night, that every single rock act that ever made it big understood the day and age they were living in and were able to tap into that day and age through their music and message.
This brings me to 2019 and the return of my much-beloved Stoner Kings, as we stand here on the cusp of releasing our third studio album since 2001. It’ll be on May 17 that Alpha Male is slated to hit the digital airwaves on platforms like iTunes and Spotify.
Stoner Kings, Finland, 2019.

Stoner Kings 2019, photo by Marko Simonen, clockwise from top left: StarBuck (vocals), Rude Rothsten (bass), Joonas Vepsä (guitar), Janne Kontoniemi (drums)

It’s absurd to think that since our inception in the fall of 2000, we’ve only put out two albums up ‘til now — 2001’s Brimstone Blues and 2006’s Fuck The World. We were arguably infamous back in our day, a sore thumb and Ichabod amongst our peers, hated yet a cult phenomenon at the same time. Then, there was an eight-year absence, an exile in limbo, between 2008-2016. We came back from that, determined to make an impression yet again. I had a vision that the guys shared. A vision to re-establish what rock was meant to be. Yes, Stoner Kings’ late, third coming would be a roar of rebellion in and of itself.
So some of you will ask what is this rebellion? What’s the big fuss and big talk about?
Well, it’s in the lyrics. It’s in the message. It’s in the meat of the matter, as I lyrically pillage the socially-accepted dogmas of our times, aiming to dissect and dismantle the myriad lies fed to us in the name of whatever suits the agenda at whatever turn and point in modern days.
Already in name and title alone, Alpha Male bucks the system. We’re not looking to kowtow to the masses. We’re not looking to win brownie points and play nice. Hell, we’re looking to not only rock the boat but turn the whole damn thing over!
So yes, Stoner Kings ARE bringing back the spirit of rebellion to rock. But it’s not the spirit that you’ll recall with familiarity from times past, because times have changed. Now, we’re calling everyone’s bullshit and bluff in the face of modern times. We’re offering the bitchslap that others fear to dish out. We have no fear, because we care not for public sentiment, nor is our house hingent upon social media likes, follows or ass-kissing to buck up our self-worth.
Fuck it, Stoner Kings are coming again with Alpha Male to kick ass, take names and overturn the lies that we’ve all been sold in the name of political correctness.
Get ready. May 17, the Earth rumbles in tribulation once again!
STONER KINGS Alpha Male cover

The album cover for Stoner Kings – Alpha Male (2019)

Hear the first single from our upcoming Alpha Male album, Fucked AD, here!

As I get older, I try to do the world around me some good and pass on the lessons I’ve learned in case some random souls out there have the ears to hear and a heart to understand.  I believe it’s one of our obligations as human beings to give something back, to make our personal contribution count.  So here goes, take the following as you wish.  Hopefully there’s something in it that you can take with you and make yourself a better person with that gained knowledge.

Michael Majalahti

I steadfastly believe in the adage “if the shoe fits, wear it.” (photo: Hannu Eskelinen)

HUSTLE (like your life depends on it)

The older you get, the more you both understand – and feel – life slipping away at an increasingly rapid rate. When you’re young, it feels like forever as you look ahead to your future. Waiting to hit legal age, waiting to finish college or university, waiting to find that right girl to spend your life with. It all feels so long. However, in retrospect, life goes by in a flash.

If there is one thing that I have learned here by my mid-40’s, it’s that you’ve gotta hustle. Boy, you have got to make your two cents count, for the time is frighteningly short. You have got to bust your ass and make the most out of every opportunity because most key opportunities only come by once in a lifetime. And living with regret is a bitch and half, let me assure you.

What’s Your Driver?

Nowadays, more than ever, we’ve got armchair quarterbacks galore sitting behind their computer screens living a virtual life of nil content. It’s stagnating, the sedentary prison of tech slavery that most of us have succumbed to. A friend of mine once said, ”If you look back at your life and ask yourself what have I been doing most in the past five years, and if your answer is sitting at a computer staring at a screen, you have seriously got to get yourself a life.” Truer words have seldom been spoken. And many of us need to really get busy finding that life of worth, value and meaning… especially in our age of tech gadgets, virtual reality, escapism and social media overload.

social media zombies

The bottom line is that the crucial thing that your self-respect and healthy ego hinges on is getting shit done. Period. You have to make your contribution count. You have to create value in order to feel valuable. You must put one foot in front of the other and make strides toward goal after goal in order to have a life of meaning. There is simply no other way. In order for this to happen, you must hustle and work toward achieving worthwhile goals of quality substance.

If you don’t have a driver in your life – that being an incessant need that pushes you to get shit done – you’ll simply stagnate, and that only leads to death. You cannot simply stagnate and just remain as is. No, stagnation will change you, and moreso, kill you. Like a limb left inside of a cast, you will atrophy mentally and spiritually, leading to another kind of death before your physical time is up. But in order to have a driver, you must first have a passion. Something you burn for. For a man without passion is a sorry individual, indeed. Just take an honest look at your own social circle and you’ll certainly see the drifters, the ones without aim, purpose or passion in their lives, and this point will become crystal clear. ‘Nuff said and point taken, I gander.

stagnation

The thing that has driven me in my life is something as simple as the fear of mortality. I never asked for this life but now that I’m here, I’m damn well going to make the most of it. My motto is: before you know it, we’ll all be dead, so get busy!

Who the hell are we, anyway? Just another wayfarer on this earthly trek, another generation come and gone, returning to the dust from whence we came? Before that fateful day, I want to get a lot of meaningful things done and make this one and only life worth something, if for no one else, then for myself and the sake of my own self-worth, self-respect and sanity. If they write about me in the annals of world history, great. If not, so fucking what. What counts is that I personally will have had a life worth living, a life full of meaning, brimming with worthwhile content. Then, when one day it will be my time to give up the ghost, I can do so as a fulfilled man that went out and did all he could with the time that was given to him.

My Story

I was born to an immigrant preacher couple in Canada back in 1973. The doctors never gave my mother any hopes of having a child. Her womb was too small, they said. My father, ever the servant of the Lord and a minister to the bitter end, encouraged his wife to trust in God above. I am her only child, the son that was never to be, and so she called me Michael, after the arch angel in Scripture.

I was the outcast since childhood, shunned by other kids simply based on proxy: I was the preacher’s kid. I became the lone wolf, the one that took the path less trodden. I went out into my personal wasteland in order to die and be born again, to reach full manhood, with a clear, personal identity, in order to be something more than the status quo.

lone wolf

Thus, I followed what my heart burned for and became a professional wrestler – the closest thing to a real-life superhero that there is. Of all the vocations on the academic palette, pro wrestler wasn’t in there. Yet, I knew I didn’t want to be anything on the list offered. So pro wrestler it was. And more than that, I became the most accomplished professional wrestler in history to date out of Northern Europe. Yes, longevity-wise and contribution-wise, I arguably even eclipsed the late Tony ”Ludvig Borga” Halme of Finland, who worked briefly in WWE between 1993-1994. I became pro wrestling champion the world over, on several occasions, and I still grapple to this day, currently holding a version the German world heavyweight wrestling championship. I’ve coached up talent in six countries to date and I’ve headlined in many of the countries and promotions that I’ve worked in over the past 25 years of my in-ring career. So yeah, I’ve done pretty well for myself and it’s something I can be happy about.

Due to the immense passion that I’ve put into my personal piece of business, I’ve had an effective driver that has propelled me to the heights that I’ve achieved and enjoyed. The reason I can hold my head up is because I’ve done my due diligence and put the time in, and therefore through true achievement I can lay claim to healthy, strong ego and self-respect. Where others have quit, I’ve persisted and fought even harder. I don’t say this to boast, I say it to validate the point made.

Brother, I have hustled and gone the extra mile time and time again for the things that my heart has burned for. And I continue to hustle, because life still continues.

Get Busy!

Life is short, so get busy! Get off your Playstation and Pornhub and start doing something worthwhile. Don’t care what the naysayers and critics think. Don’t listen to their lack of faith and disparaging remarks as to your aspirations or your seemingly, overtly-ambitious, goals. The dogs will always bark as the caravan passes by, such is the nature of the world that we live in. Maybe your wife or girlfriend will bitch you out, thinking whatever you’ve put your heart to achieve is a waste of time. Maybe your family won’t understand if you jump out of the rat race to pursue your true ambitions. Maybe the world around you will hold you to be a fool. Don’t listen, filter it out. You have to know where you are headed. You and no one else. Don’t look for affirmation from the outside. Brother, you have got to know yourself! Get your shit – and your head – together.

Will Smith quotes

You must add value on a constant, unending basis to your life in order to draw value to yourself in turn. Value always comes to value, be it on a micro or macro level, just as water always seeks its own level. If your contribution is valuable in the eyes of those around you – and I mean valuable in a way that no one can discredit or discount that value – you will be successful before long. Maybe not as fast as you’d like, but yes, you will find success. It’s the law of life, you reap what you sow. In the measure that you meet out it will be met to you, to quote the Good Book. And like Simon Sinek says: ”People don’t buy what you sell, they buy what you believe.”

A History of High Achievement

When you look back on your life, it’s not so much what you want them to say about you when you’re gone, it’s how you feel about the actual value of the life you’ve lived up till now. As long as there is breath in your body, it’s never too late to turn your ship around and start living a life of high value.

How does one live and engage in a life of high value? Simply, by pursuing high achievement.

Plain and simple, and especially as men, our self-worth, self-respect and self-value is directly hingent upon how much we feel that our contribution has been worth to those around us. This is where the self-serving, modern mindset fails in spades, as it cannot bring about value due to its selfish nature, which is all about me, me and more me. You absolutely must make it about others, about your contribution to the world around you, no matter the size of your social circle. The social mirror just works this way. It is what it is. You get what you give in the measure that you give.

Coming from a pro wrestling background myself, one of my biggest inspirations early on was a fairly famous wrestler from the 1980s named Tully Blanchard. Tully was most famous for being one of the original Four Horsemen in the mid-’80s and his name has thus gone down in grappling lore. One of Tully’s most famous promo quotes was: ”Be whatever you wanna be, just be the BEST.” That’s something that has stuck with me all these years. Just choose to be as damn good as you can be at whatever endeavor you apply yourself to. Have that amount of personal pride in your doings. Don’t settle for second best. Be a leader, be an alpha.

Motion creates emotion, it’s an old adage and wisdom at that. You cannot feel good about yourself unless you actually do something to justify feeling good. That’s why drugs and alcohol fail to achieve this end. Dopamine, noradrenaline and serotonin simply don’t just get triggered by any random thing. The reward center of the brain is geared to release ”feelgood hormones” only after the justifiable effort has first been put in. Of course, you can sabotage your dopamine levels, for example, through indulging in porn, playing the slot machines or winning at Playstation, but none of those will create fulfillment for you. True fulfillment comes through successful accomplishment, even winning smaller battles along the way, long before the war is ever even over.

The world today is handicapped and plagued by the social sedation brought on by technology and the virtual addictions that come with it. Simply reasoned, people today are less fulfilled than ever, due to the fact that they simply achieve very little outside of the immersion of virtual reality. Watching TV, Netflix, movies and YouTube won’t make you feel fulfilled. Playstation and gamer culture won’t make you feel fulfilled. Engaging with yourself while watching porn won’t make you feel fulfilled. The drought in your spirit won’t go away unless you feed it with meaningful, tangible action. So get busy.

To Sum It Up

In closing, ask yourself one, simple question: ”If I were to die tomorrow, what will have my life have been worth?” The answer should suffice to wake anyone up and start hustling.

Lastly, consider the words of Theodore Roosevelt from his ”Man in the Arena” speech:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Word.

Having been in the pro wrestling industry all across the globe for a good quarter-century, I thought to write a handbook or guide of sorts for young wrestlers and newer talents in – or just coming into – the wrestling business, based on what I’ve seen and experienced over my career.

I do this partially out of necessity, as I’ve seen the younger stock damn near kill the ”business” side of the industry for the other workers out there, and in part as a public service to give back to the industry where it stands today.

When I say this guide was born out of necessity, I say so mainly out of the fact that the ”professional” side of our industry is suffering tremendously, even though there are more shows taking place now than at any time in recent memory. Yet, the pay scale is one of the facets being demolished and many a newer talent is to blame for this, be they promoters or workers. I’ve also seen the near-death of actual etiquette in terms of how to carry one’s self in the business, which should be addressed for the welfare of the industry at large. With this in mind, now is the time to listen up, so let us commence with this free, but invaluable, 101 in How To Handle Yourself In Pro Wrestling!

Lesson #1: Act Like a Pro

How to Look in Pro Wrestling

Now kids, boys and girls alike, working for free just to get bookings and paying to play is not the way to go if you want a future in any trade. Earning your stripes and paying your dues while working for nil to free is one or two year period, at most. Back in the day when this business was still a real trade that supported a workers’ family, if any said talent undersold themselves intentionally just to get booked, or if they sabotaged a comrade in the territory by underselling themselves just to get booked, they risked getting the living shit beat out of them by the locker room.

It’s called PRO Wresting for a reason. The Pro word is there to let you understand that you should have the intent of making as much coin at it as you can over the course of your career. You must learn to make yourself valuable. Your work must be worth something. If not, why should anyone pay to see you?

Get real wresting gear, invest in yourself.  Get a good looking pair of tights, singlet or trunks made.  Buy a quality pair of real wrestling boots.  Look the part.  Do not wrestle in sneakers and shorts, to say nothing of a t-shirt.  If you look like a punter, you deserve to be treated like a punter.  If you don’t have enough sun around your climes to get a natural tan, then either hit the solarium or get a spraytan for any and all wrestling shows that you might be booked on.  I cannot stress this enough: look the part.  Look professional.

Now, I understand the way the world is going. I understand that all across the board, in live music, in the postal service, in the construction sector, etc. the jobs are increasingly going to those who will work harder and longer for less pay. This, however, is pure sabotage and is destined to end badly for everyone. You can always negotiate down, but it’s freaking hard to negotiate up. There’s always someone who will do the job for less, as you all know. Make yourself and your personal piece of business so valuable that promoters and fans are going to be willing to pay for your talents, but also, know what the pay scale is. Know your place on the pay scale, based on your experience, number of matches worked, past accolades, current profile and overall value on any said, given card. It’s not grand on the indies these days, by any stretch. Like former WCW wrestler PN News, aka Cannonball Grizzly, so aptly stated back in 2013 in a locker room in Germany: ”I might be a whore, because I sell my body for money. At least I’m not a slut who gives it away for free.”

There have been several gaijins (foreigners) over the last few years who can be held accountable for killing the once extremely profitable wrestling promised land of Japan. These newer faces went in, paying their own three-month visa, paying their own flights, sleeping on dojo floors and making next to nothing in pay just to play superstar and say they’ve wrestled in Japan. Talk about being a mark! It makes me sick to my gut. By the same token, the promoters who took them up on their offers are just as guilty. They collectively killed Japan for the rest of us, for the veterans included, who deserve to make a reasonable living at this game after sacrificing their bodies for so many years. Japan used to be a place, along with Mexico, where a good hand could make a decent chunk of change and maybe even put some of it away in savings. Sayonara now to that notion.

Moral of the story: you must act like a pro to be considered a pro. Period.

Lesson #2: Make Yourself Valuable

AJ Styles

AJ Styles is a classic case of a guy whose work ethic and skills made him valuable, so that he was able to reach the pinnacle of his profession.

Get your look in order. Invest in a gym membership and an experienced, knowledgeable personal trainer if you don’t have the know-how to build your body up to be muscular and strong. You will need that strength in the ring, I assure you, and the look is your aesthetic sales pitch. It’s the mirage of the product before delivery to your audience, after which it’s up to you to you produce — looking like the Big Mac on the menu board, or like the sorry, flattened burger that very well might get handed to you. People do not want to see jabronies that look just like them. If the guy changing your oil at Jiffy Lube could just as easily be a member of Motley Crue, then you have a perception problem because the star aura is sorely missing. Pro wrestling is meant to be bigger than life. Always has, always will be. That said, this is the exact same epidemic that has flattened out and deflated the aura, mysticism and grandeur of rock music at large, in addition to spoiling beauty pageants where the girls actually have to be a cut above the status quo to qualify, to allowing professional politicians into public office who fail to represent the interests of the public at large in any way and just capitalize on personal gain at your expense.

My old coach, Lance Storm, once so appropriately stated that a wrestler need three things to even have a fighting chance at making it in the pro wrestling business: 1) the look, meaning body and image, 2) the actual ring skills and 3) charisma to make people either love or hate you, but no middle ”they’re okay, I guess” ground.

If you lack in any of the three attributes aforementioned, get busy filling in the blanks, because while you’re daydreaming, someone else is hustling and doing what has to be done. And as they say, the early bird gets the worm (read: bookings).

Lesson #3: Don’t be a Mark

bullshit

Pro wrestling is a bullshitters’ business. Don’t be fooled, everyone is ”working” the next guy, because no one wants to risk losing their spot or moving a peg down. Everyone is looking out for number one. Many would sell their mother down a river to get a foothold over you. Al Snow once aptly said, as we were touring Egypt back in 2009: ”There are no brothers in this business, only business associates”.

Don’t be too gullible for your own good. Take everything with a grain of salt. Believe it only when you have your plane tickets in hand or when you are actually at the said show. Everything up to that point is just talk, and talk is cheap. Truth be told, only after you’ve actually been paid your agreed on wage can you really believe it.

Also, don’t be a mark for yourself. Just because you know how to play the game doesn’t make you King Midas. Don’t think that you are God’s gift to wrestling just because you might look like a million dollars or you can do a reverse 450 Firebird Splash. Don’t think you are indispensable. Don’t think that just because you’ve bought 10 pairs of tights and four pairs of boots that you are somehow better for it than the guy that just has one pair of each.  Never take anything for granted. Stay humble. Be a good sport. Don’t be an egomaniac. Have a strong ego that drives you, but don’t let your ego control you.

Lesson #4: Pro Wrestling is still Territorial

El Ligero

El Ligero of England

You’ve probably heard a million times that the territories died back at the end of the ’80s. Still, the way the wrestling business and promoters operate today is highly territorial. For example, if you live in a place like Finland, at the ass end of the world like myself, and a promoter can get four guys crammed into a car out of Germany to go wrestle in Italy, who do you think they will choose? Hmm. A guy like me, here in the worst possible demographic area on the map, will have to have his shit together and all his sales arguments in line, be relevant and credible and bringing something of salable use to the table, if he hopes to score gigs in the face of this aforementioned, stark reality.

When I say wrestling is still territorial, I’ll break it down for you: a promoter is looking to make as much money as possible and in doing so they look to cut their costs. The promoter will try to take the cheapest route possible, acquire talent from nearby, just like the four-to-a-car model I mentioned, and they will sometimes even try to skimp on offering accommodations if they are able to do so, having you drive back home in the middle of the night. Yes, there are places where the talent gets treated like circus animals, even to this day. Therefore, if a promoter can keep their costs down by taking in talent from right next door, then for you to be considered from several countries away… well, you had better have something that the promoter and their show really needs. You visage on a poster better sell an adequate amount of tickets to cover your costs or you had better have the kinds of skills that make other people (read: local wrestlers of said promotion you wish to work for) look good. Or then you had better be politically important. Or then, you had better have a name in the wrestling business. Unless you are a younger talent with a name like Will Ospreay (read: a well-known internet darling) you can forget the last line I just wrote.

Lesson #5: Pro Wrestling is Ruled by Cliques

The Cliq

If you don’t know the impact of this group, then get busy on Google.

If you don’t belong to a clique, part of somebody’s group of inside faves, your chances of getting booked are slim and rare. I didn’t say slim to none, I said slim to rare. It’s the truth, even if it is a sorry state of affairs. There are shitloads of great guitarists out there who are just as good as Steve Vai or Alexi Laiho who never get anywhere or reach greater acclaim. They simply don’t belong to the right social circle and they aren’t the darlings of a certain clique, so they are shut out of the larger window of opportunity. It’s often not what you know, as valuable as that is, it’s who you know. Age-old wisdom that is, as Yoda would say.

I don’t say this as an exhortation of any sort, that you should start kissing ass and buttering up the nearest influencer, as most of these people can smell you coming a mile away. I would advise you to simply be diligent, hustle, be humble, listen, constantly improve your game and ask for the advice of those ahead of you in the game, carry the veteran’s bags and even get them coffee, and keep putting in the best effort you possibly can each and every time you go out there and step into a ring. It’s called the law of sowing and reaping. It’s the path that I took and I can tell you that it sure as shit ain’t the fast track. It took me a lot longer to get my due and get noticed, because I never kissed asses and never played locker room politics. I invested in making myself the best wrestler I could be. I got the whole package together and honed it down to a proverbial ”T”. I built up my resumé and got my personal piece of business down so solid that it became valuable. Remember: value comes to value, always. My work and ultimately my reputation stood as my calling card. Then, certain circles began letting me in, simply based on the quality of my work and my working ethic, plus the fact that I wasn’t a trouble-maker and I was dependable. I know, the path less taken doesn’t sound very sexy and it doesn’t offer instant gratification.

Still, you can try the asskissing route if you want to try short-cutting your way to the top. No guarantees that it’ll work, however. And I won’t even get into the bookers and promoters who might try implying that you trade sexual favors for bookings. Be forwarned, they are out there. Have the dignity to say NO, even if it comes at the cost of getting booked.

Lesson #6: Every Match is a CV Match

Never ”take the night off”. Never ”just wing it”. Invest yourself in making each and every match as good as you possibly can. Think of what elements you and your opponent bring to the table and tell the best story that you can with those elements in mind.

Remember: you never know who will see your bout. I say this again, because it is pivotally important: think of what elements you will need to apply to best tell the intended story of your altercation. Don’t think that you need to showcase every single move you know, nor ”get all your shit in”. No, you need to tell the story of the match. And not every match needs to be a five-star affair. Maybe that’s not the purpose of your match in the big picture of the overall show. Maybe your position on the card requires something else from you.

Still, you need to come out of it looking like a star, but so does your opponent. Remember, you are only as good as the person that you are in the ring with. If they look like shit, you look like shit. And if you need that last one explained, you need to go back to wrestling school under a better coach.

Lesson #7: Be Adaptable and Always Keep Learning

Adam Flex Maxted

Adam “Flex” Maxted

I’m reminded by a young man I met while on a wrestling tour of Pakistan last year. His name is Adam Maxted from the UK. Adam is very young in the business, but he already has a million dollar body. He’s invested his time in the gym. He’s hungry to learn, constantly taking part in seminars of old warhorses like Marty Jones, always looking to up his game. And voilá… in less than one year since I met him, the kid is already IPW All England champion in the UK and has an upcoming match booked against Rey Mysterio for one of the largest companies there this coming March. Believe me when I tell you: you do not get chosen to be booked against a guy the likes of Rey unless you have all of the various pieces of the puzzle together. Adam deserves all the credit in the world for being a model example of hustling his ass off, being humble, keeping his ears open and being able to learn from constructive criticism. He is on the fast track to becoming a big name in our industry, and he will have earned it by the sweat of his brow, once that inevitable day comes. And once that day does arrive, Adam will have people like Marty Jones to thank, because he has been taught the essentials of what it reads on the marquee: WRESTLING.

The same applies to you. No matter who you are booked against, know your groundwork. Know how to actually wrestle. If your match falls apart, the highspots aren’t going to save you. Garbage wrestling isn’t going to save you, either. The name of the game is still wrestling at the end of the day. Can you pull it off?

 

Every once in awhile, I feel the urge to write something prolific and meaningful that I hope someone out there will take to heart and be able to adapt or learn from.  One such topic is that of Neomasculinity, something that is rather close to my heart.

art-of-manliness

Some people might ask “why?”, but those same people will obviously be confused themselves as to their own gender roles and forte(s).  First of all, everyone must understand, that Neomasculinity and MGTOW (Men Going Their Own Way) are two completely different entities and concepts, which have nothing to do with one another.

Whereas MGTOW urges men to join the “sexodus” crowd (opting to quit pursuing females because of their seemingly unattainable/unfulfillable demands), immerse themselves into gaming culture and just drift in search of something that they’ve been unable to procure or tap into themselves, Neomasculinity urges men to re-establish their standing as the head of the tribe, king of their own home, adopt warrior-like mentality, become responsible and begin acting like Alpha Males.

Yeah, I like the sound and vibe of Neomasculinity, probably because I was raised that way.  At the core, I have always been a classic man.  My parents saw to that, and I have them to thank for the fact that I am not confused about my standing or who I am in today’s ever-convoluted, ambiguous culture and world.

So why all the fuss about Neomasculinity?  Some people get bent out of shape at even the slightest espousal of traditional values.  After all, they seem to be a thing of yesteryear and almost the laughing stock of the media and culture of the day.  Well, Neomasculinity’s argument lies in the fact that no man wants to feel like a chump, a wimp, a whipping boy, a dog on a leash (except for those unfortunate individuals who have tendencies to be “slaves”, which is a certain kind of perversion) or “the weaker half.”

No real man out there would opt for any of the above-mentioned descriptions when speaking about themselves.  Real men want to be respected, feel powerful, in control, leading the dance, hunting the prey, making the kill.  Real men do not play second fiddle to anyone, because they know their self-worth and internal stock value.

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I find it quite absurd and even tragically comedic, that the vast amount of YouTubers out there talking about Neomasculinity sound like their balls haven’t even dropped yet.  There isn’t much weight behind their words, because they sound like they themselves are just analyzing the phenomenon, and trying it on for size like an over-sized leather jacket at a clothing store: they don’t own it yet, but they are hoping it would be for them.

Only one source on YouTube has a voice, sans imposing physique to match, however, that carries a credible voice for the cause.  Take a listen to Paul Joseph Watson as he espouses the virtues of Neomasculinity and breaks it down for y’all…

So once again, why Neomasculinity?  Well, because men these days need to man the fuck up.  Men have let things slide, they have given the squeaky wheel of feminism, PC thought and “sexual equality” propagandists the proverbial grease, in the hopes of shutting them up and getting their own way.  Men have not safeguarded their standing in society, their position at the helm of the household, nor their position as leaders that answer for their deeds and show responsibility at the end of it all.

Instead, modern men have become shellshocked, soft, relenting and yes, confused.  They don’t know where they stand anymore, be it in their romantic relationships or in society on a whole.  Men have lost their place, which was etched in stone for thousands of years, and this has not boded well for the modern man, as the spine of society on a whole has crumbled in its wake.  Oh, and men are not well at all.  They are depressed, lost and weak because of their lack of purpose and numbing confusion.

Simply acting like a traditional man is considered offensive and sexist now.  I wonder what icons like John Wayne and Clint Eastwood would say about this.  Well, I know what Eastwood had to say, because he let Esquire magazine have it awhile ago, claiming the generation today is one made up of “pussies.”

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Where does that leave men?  Good question.  Scrambling for answers, I’d say, as they try to appease and win over the opposite sex through adapting to the rules of the new game, much like Mel Gibson in the movie What Women Want.  Really, you ask?  Yes, to a large degree.

Men have become players, even moreso than before, because they cannot seem to find any other way to score with the demanding, domineering modern female.  They opt for the one night stand in lieu of a long-standing, serious relationship, because men do not see the long-term payoff in the big picture.  There’s nothing to bank on, nothing worth the investment.  Sad, really.

Back in the day, both sexes brought something valuable to the table – actual life skills like cooking, housekeeping, gardening, mechanical and fundamental competence in line with their gender – and the complementary dynamic of these combined skills made for a promising marriage of opposites.  Nowadays, the counterparts in the relationship are damn near homogenous, and this cannot be a good thing.  Ever.

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At the core of it all, men do not want to be controlled or manipulated to facilitate something that they feel is outside of what they can realistically produce.  And why is this?  Because men are still driven by the innate need for respect, to feel strong and to be powerful through and through.  When a man’s deeds and actions are not met with affirmative respect, he loses interest and caring, and proceeds to piss in the wind and “fuck it all.”  When a man does not feel that he is strong, he shies away and tries to cover up his weakness, making him feel like less of a man.  This is not hard to understand, nor is it rocket science.

The younger generation, I’ve noticed, has little to no clue about what it takes to be a man (or to be a woman, for that matter), and they try to overcompensate with things like social media photos of themselves in little to no garb, which only initiates the most primal mating call of them all, and nothing beyond that.  They think that superficial values will get the job done, without having to put in the hard work and persistence of time.

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I’ve got news for you, folks.  We’re in trouble.  Our society is on the crux of a great, social overhaul.  Gender roles are being done away with, and if you only care to take a look around with unassuming eyes, you will see that we are in for a shit storm.  The polarity of the sexes, the things and idiosyncrasies that have drawn men and women to each other over the centuries, is being erased.  No one is going to want to invest in the long-term with the opposite sex if the perks, goods and life skills are not there to begin with.  Forget the window dressing, we’re going deeper than the surface here.

So, Neomasculinity is the only clear, healthy answer for men today, period.  It seeks to re-establish the throne and take back the proverbial lost balls of those unfortunate fellas, who let them slip away to begin with.  After realizing such a move only made them feel like shit, their only course of action is to backtrack and reclaim what they should have never parted with in the first place.

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I have my parents to thank for a traditional upbringing, with a sense of responsibility, virtue and a strong sense of manliness that has never wavered, even as times have changed.

Make the stand today, gentlemen, or risk losing what is left of your self-respect.

In closing, if anything I’ve said or written here has offended or distraught you… well, to quote my favorite pro wrestling promoter of all time, Bill Watts: “If the shoe fits, wear it.”

If anyone needs further clarification about Neomasculinity, read this.

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I never thought I’d come to this day. A day when I write about politics, which is something I have no belief nor trust in. But alas, Donald Trump winning the 45th Presidency of the United States of America warrants a blog of its own, even from a non-believer like me.

First and foremost, I write this because of Donald Trump’s ties to the world of professional wrestling; an industry that I have been an integral part of since 1992. Going all the way back to 1988 and 1989, Donald Trump’s very own Trump Plaza in Atlantic City (NJ) hosted WWE’s Wrestlemania IV and V events.

This was Trump’s first foray into the grappling world, which would parlay into a full-blown role for him at Wrestlemania 23 in 2007 with ”The Battle of the Billionaires”, as Trump went head-to-head with WWE boss Vince McMahon, fronted by their chosen advocates Bobby Lashley and the late Umaga, respectively. Trump has actually appeared on WWE television several times over the past few years, even owning Monday Night RAW (in storyline) for a brief moment.  In addition, Trump was voted in to the WWE Hall of Fame celebrity wing in 2013.

So with this in mind, I would like to break down a little bit about the psychology of the latest Presidential race and how over-the-top it was in all aspects, across the board, between Hilary and Trump.

First and foremost, if anyone was paying attention, everything Donald Trump said and did during his Presidential campaign was straight out of a WWE playbook. The WWE creative staff could have booked and penned this entire run, and it would have played out exactly like it did. From Trump not even having a background in politics (raise your hat to the man for that) to becoming the decisive underdog early on, having the Republican Party that he represented all but leave him for dead, Donald Trump fought the system and won. This was a Wrestlemania-worthy payoff.

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Everything about Donald Trump screams professional wrestling. From his swagger to his verbatim, Trump has learned his lessons from the showbiz world and has mastered his approach. He didn’t flinch a single time during his campaign run, regardless of the mass amount of hostile and derogatory flames thrown his way. He laughed it all off, held his head high and spearheaded straight for the goal. He was the ultimate anti-hero, akin to ”Stone Cold” Steve Austin’s infamous WWE run on top. He was cocky, confrontational, devil-may-care in his approach. He went Spinal Tap with what he did and he still won. Somebody hand this man a show of respect only for the aforementioned here!

Trump’s campaign and his Presidential election reminds me of Ridley Scott’s 2000 classic The Gladiator movie and the interaction between the aging Ceasar and his general, Maximus (Russel Crowe). Take a look at the clip below and you will see my point.

I find it truly remarkable, that a man with no background in politics took the Presidency of the United States. Perhaps there is still hope. The hope that Trump has not (yet) been poisoned by the politics of corporate America and Washington makes one wonder if there is somehow a way to still turn this ship around. And I am talking about the ship of the common man, the blue collar worker, the middle class citizen of the world.

In the last Bush-era, they finagled a way to redistribute wealth by taking away the homes of the middle class and put them in the hands of the banking system. Over the course of the Obama administration, the big businesses have benefited tremendously while the middle class has kept on disappearing into oblivion. The rich have consistently gotten richer while the poor have gotten consistently poorer. There has been no Robin Hood to tip the scales of justice and ”stick it to the man.”

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Is Donald Trump the new coming of Robin Hood?

One can only hope.

Even if you – like I – don’t believe in politics, we can still suspend our disbelief… like watching a good WWE main event match, hoping that maybe… maybe there is a chance that the shit is going to get real. In a good way.

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It’s rather peculiar that I wrestled at a Pride event yesterday.  A Cro-magnon, retrosexual, hetero heel, the worst possible prototype villain of the queer culture, wrestling at Eurogames.  Held in downtown Helsinki under the blazing hot summer sun, Eurogames was an LGBT event, which expressly wanted to see “The Rebel” StarBuck vs. Jessica Love center stage, stemming from the hype surrounding my Spandex Sapiens movie in Finnkino theaters currently.

As most all of you should know by know, Jessica Love is Europe’s only transgender female pro wrestler.  In the Spandex Sapiens movie, Jessica Love plays my worst adversary, especially from the point of values and societal values.  We are polar opposites, like east and west.  Jessica is the all-allowing liberal modern-day representative, whereas I am the conservative caveman who holds on to black and white principles and ideals.

Well, wrestle I did.  And not just wrestle.  I used the opportunity presented to make some of the most poignant social comments to be heard publicly in today’s suffocating, politically correct environment.  I let loose and let it be known, that the men these days are no longer men, nor are the women any longer women.  They are confused.  Not just gender-confused, I mean confused in general.  The statistics prove it!  Look at the depression in our society.  Look at the kids, how lost they are in terms of their own identities.  Look at the mass divorce rates and the ever-growing numbers of single moms.  I made my point loud and clear, and the Pride-friendly crowd on hand did NOT like it one single bit.

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StarBuck preaches the truth at Eurogames (photo: Pasi Murto)

Yet, it was hard to refute what I had to say.  I heard boos, sure.  But not the kind of heart-felt boos that come from disdain and spite.  They were moreso boos that towed the political line of the day, trained monkey kinds of boos.  I believe people in their hearts knew, that I was telling the truth.  It gets harder to hate a person when they tell you the truth and the truth is simply inconvenient for you.

So there I was, taking bullets in the chest and in the back for every traditional, hetero person out there, who does not have the spine or the balls to stand up for what they believe in.  I went head-long into battle, alone!  I sent out a load of emails prior to Eurogames, urging traditional, conservative folks and organizations of that ilk to come out and support me, “The Rebel” StarBuck, as I duked it out with Jessica Love in front of the entire LGBT community in Helsinki at this Eurogames Pride event.  Guess what?  NO ONE dared to show up.  Not one, single group or backer of the traditional nuclear family unit showed up to support StarBuck.  For this, the entire traditional, conservative front in Finland should hang their heads in shame!

I went into that match yesterday with Jessica Love a one-man army.  A legend in my lifetime.  A man who stood, where no others dared to stand.  A lone wolf in a strange land.  And I destroyed Jessica Love!  I broke Jessica Love’s arm in the process.  Boo-hoo.  I made a statement, because extreme times call for extreme measures.  You are going to remember my name!  StarBuck.  Get it right.  It has nothing to do with coffee.

Jessica Love got to take a trip to the hospital after our match and all of a sudden, the LGBT crowd had lost their hero.  Now they had a real reason to hate me.  But as the saying goes, the best direction to ride a horse is in the direction that it is already headed.  Haters are going to hate anyway.  Give them their anti-hero.  Give them what they deserve.

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Jessica Love was scheduled to face me a second time in the main event of the Eurogames wrestling program later yesterday night.  Well, there was no Jessica Love in sight, so out comes King Kong Karhula, defending his friend.  This, in and of itself, has more to it than can be seen at surface value.  Karhula recently wrote a blog of his own about his friendship with Jessica, telling of how close they are and have been for many years, even when they were feuding.  In the pro wrestling business, that is called breaking kayfabe, and it is considered a cardinal sin.  Karhula not only pissed all over the traditions of our business and age-old tradition, he conveniently went “into business for himself”, trying to push Jessica’s starpower in my Spandex Sapiens movie through aligning himself at this time with my transgender foe.  I saw it as shameless mooching on Karhula’s part, reeking of desperation to get his own rub off the whole shebang.

Be that as it may, since Jessica Love could not wrestle with a freshly-broken arm, in comes Karhula to take Jessica’s place in the main event against Yours Truly!  Toting a gay pride flag on his way to the ring, I really wondered where Karhula’s true feelings and allegiances lay.  I found it both amusing and pathetic.  But I will say this: Juhana Karhula came to fight.  He was incensed, full of piss and vinegar.  He attacked me with the kind of emotion that is rarely felt, and the people on hand felt it too.  The heat was off the charts.  Karhula was a man possessed, tearing into me as we brawled, before I could turn the match in my favor and run him head-first into the ring post.

My wife Diana happened to be at ringside with her new camera, taking pics:

I was able to find one single sympathizer to the traditional, conservative family cause, and that was FCF Wrestling’s Teuvo.  Although he’s a beer-swigging hick, Teuvo is a man of principle.  He still believes in black and white, too.  So I had him come out with a Straight Pride sign and act as my one, single backer at this LGBT Eurogames event.  Teuvo even got in some kicks of his own on Karhula, once I left him laying at ringside.

I blasted Karhula with all I had, having a hell of a time doing it, too!  The crowd was irate and hot as hell.  I hammered Karhula until we both got knocked down center-ring.  Karhula had that entire Eurogames crowd behind him, as he rallied a comeback against me.  Teuvo made his presence known at the most-critical moment, blasting Karhula with an open beer can in the face, allowing me to capitalize on Karhula’s misstep and roll him up for the pin and win.  Sure, he got up and dropped both Teuvo and I with a Death Valley Driver afterwards, but my win was already in the history books, right in front of the most antagonistic crowd that I could ever imagine wrestling in front of.

My main event win was not only a win for StarBuck, it was a win for the entire Straight Pride cause.  Where no one has the guts to stand up and make some noise for what they really believe in, should it deter from the ruling PC thought of the day, because they fear public sentiment and others’ public opinions so much, one man took the bull by the horns and led the charge.  The man that took the bullets and arrows for everyone else, for those who didn’t have the guts to stand when called upon, that man stood tall in the end.  Isn’t that what an anti-hero is?  It sure as hell is in my book.

If you wish to hear my legendary promo as well as see the video of my matches with Karhula and Jessica Love from Eurogames, like FCF Wrestling’s Facebook page and see the bouts there!  Otherwise, here are some stellar clips from my match against Jessica Love as well as the other matches at Eurogames, filmed and edited by the talented Juha Sihtola of Mad-Cam!

Yesterday, the long-awaited feature film story about me, Spandex Sapiens, came out in Finnkino movie theaters across the country of Finland.  To celebrate and promote this monumental occasion, FCF Wrestling held a 6-hour wrestle-thon, outdoors in downtown Helsinki, smack-dab in front of the city’s main movie theater, Tennispalatsi.

In the main event, to tie in to the Spandex Sapiens movie release, I fought against transsexual Jessica Love in a battle of both values and polar opposites, as Jessica is the main, free-thinking, liberal antagonist vs. my traditional, conservative, masculine prototype in the movie.

As I wrote in one of my latest blogs, I really believe that the people at large on a societal level will find themselves choosing a side in this movie and the themes and values systems presented therein.  This was proven in blazing, vivid colors last night on the premises of Kampin Keskus, where the wrestling ring was set up in front of Tennispalatsi theater, when I got into the ring to take on Jessica Love.

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Telling the truth, and having a whole audiences mindset turn against me. (photo: Aki Mäki)

I gave a heated and hearty promo prior to our match, where I chagrined over the lack of moral absolutes and black-and-white principles in our modern society.  I challenged the crowd on hand to look into their souls and ask themselves if they really exemplified real masculinity as men, and real femininity as women, seeing how messed up our modern culture is in all its ambiguity.  The people started to turn against me, almost as if they were programmed to do so.  Brainwashed by the mass media and public sentiment of the day, the crowd became an angry mob.  Someone told me afterwards, that they were afraid that someone from the audience would rush the ring amidst my match with Jessica Love.

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Taking control of the match! (photo: Aki Mäki)

Jessica Love and I had a damn war of attrition (hell, I even penned the lyrics to a song by the same name by my thrash metal band Angel of Sodom!), in which we tore into each other with the kind of malicious intent that only two polar opposites could create!  The ring was slippery as hell, as the sky began to sprinkle rain just as our match began.  The canvas might as well have been an ice skating rink, making it damn hard to maneuver and get one’s timing down.  It was risky all around, but the sheer personal nature of our battle overrode all else.  The people present could certainly feel the tension in the air.  It was as real as it gets, folks!

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Balsara.net captures the raw emotion of the finish of our match!

In the end, I had such trouble getting my footing because of the rain, that Jessica was able to crack me with a nasty enzugiri, which put me down on the mat.  Jessica climbed the ropes to come off the top onto me with a senton splash, which I was able to roll out of the way from.  I then immediately hit my trademark spike piledriver for the inevitable pinfall and win.

The audience erupted in boos and jeers.  The people had spoken.  A virgin wrestling audience, peoples of all different nationalities, chose a side.  They went with the liberal, free-thinking brainwashing that they have been programmed to believe.  Somehow, I am not surprised.  As the referee in our match, Teemu, stated a few weeks ago on social media in regards to my person, “You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain.”

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This is only the beginning.  Just as the theater run for Spandex Sapiens has just begun this weekend, so the issue between myself and Jessica Love goes on.  The next time we meet in the ring, it will be in front of Jessica Love’s own LGBT demographic.  On July 1 in Helsinki, an event called Eurogames will take place in the city center. It’s a huge sporting event, in conjunction with the annual Gay Pride parade in Helsinki.

There could be no greater heel than StarBuck when it comes to this event.  There could be no more sympathetic a babyface than Jessica Love when it comes to this event.  When the gates open to the public at 12:00 on July 1, right out of the blocks, this war of attrition gets a second chapter.  Jessica Love vs. StarBuck takes center stage at Eurogames, and it’s going to be a cold day in Hell-sinki for my transgender opponent when he/she goes down again, only this time, in front of his/her own people.

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StarBuck vs. Jessica Love – chapter 2 – Eurogames, Helsinki – July 1

For anyone who missed the mass media exposure for Spandex Sapiens in Finland this week, here are a plethora of links to check out!

http://www.iltasanomat.fi/viihde/art-2000001202020.html

http://www.hs.fi/urheilu/a1466055697006

http://areena.yle.fi/1-3518002

http://www.aamulehti.fi/kulttuuri/dokumentti-loysi-showpainikehasta-kivikautisen-miehen-ja-sateenkaarilipun-liehuttajan/

http://www.radiorock.fi/#!/post/5763d6960089b403009a2303

http://www.episodi.fi/elokuvat/spandex-sapiens/

http://www.katsomo.fi/#!/jakso/626288