Monday, 31 December 2001

One Man's Opinion

This piece is a follow up to my last regular column, where I reviewed some of the email newsletters. I would like to thank those who sent me feedback, although I would just like to remind you that if you want to send feedback to me, PLEASE send it directly to me, and not to my editors.

    Anyway, back to the column. I am really pleased with how the piece went. Many have said that they thought it was a good idea to "review the competition". I don't know why or how I came up with the idea. I just did. I never knew, though, that I had some "stroke", or "power" with some of my readers.

    At first, I thought many of you just went past my column. My Italian boss is always telling me I shouldn't put myself down. Perhaps he's right for once. I'm again getting away from what I wanted to talk about. With regards to my newsletter review, one editor (in fact the ONLY editor who gave me direct feedback on my column), whose name or publication I won't mention, basically couldn't understand why I had rated his newsletter "a" lower than newsletter "b".

    My thinking for this is quite simple, in my opinion, newsletter "b" is better than newsletter "a". Simple as that. Yet this editor, who struck me as being quite an intelligent fellow, just couldn't understand this. The Two Sheds Review is about one thing, and will always be about one thing - my opinion on matters wrestling. It is my opinion, and mine alone. But for me to illustrate what I'm trying to get at here, let me give you an example.

    Many of you know about Jordan Allsworth. He is the former editor of Powerbomb Wrestling News, and the current writer of The Jord Report, which appears in DSD. As Laura Francis said to me a few months ago, everyone seems to know Jordan. A while back, after Bret Hart announced his retirement because of his concussion, Jordan wrote a column in which he said Bret was a pussy for retiring. I disagreed with Jordan, and wrote a DSD column a couple of days later saying that I thought Bret did the right thing retiring because I didn't want to see him end up like a punch drunk drugged up moron.

    Now, although I did not agree with Jordan's opinion on this situation, I respected his right to give his opinion, to air his views. I'm sure that Jordan respects my rights to air my opinions. Luis Tirado Jnr, editor of the 2Extreme Newsletter, is another example. I don't agree with a lot of his opinions, but I respect his right to air these opinions. These email newsletters, and all of us amateur writers, who spend hours each week writing their columns and who hope that one day they can give up their day jobs and actually earn money from doing this, are just giving their opinions on things happening in the wrestling world. My current catchphrase seems to be "I welcome all feedback, good and bad", which I honestly do.

    You, the reader, may not like what I write here, and I respect your right to that opinion. After all, how can I tell if what I write is very good or a piece of shit if someone doesn't tell me so? How can I improve as a writer? Not long ago I wrote for a fanzine whose editor didn't offer any sort of critique on my work. I could have sent him an article on Hulk Hogan's intestinal tract and he probably would have printed it. Isn't there some old saying, that goes something like - I may not like what you say, but I will
defend your right to say it? Well, this is what I was thinking when I saw this editor's words. Has my last column had a drastic effect on the readership of these newsletters? The answer is an abrupt and very definite no. Indeed, several of you emailed me wanting the subscription information for these newsletters, include newsletter "a".

    In an email conversation with this editor, we had quite an frank exchange of views. It does annoy me a little that this editor has failed to acknowledge my somewhat minor contribution to his readership increase. Just a proverbial doff of the hat would have done. All I will say is that  perhaps Jerry was right about this fella.

    To be quite honest, I feel a bit better now I've got that off my chest. I've had a bad head cold this week, which I'm only now just starting to get over, and an old friend is coming to see me next week as well. Things are starting to look up already. Perhaps this Christmas won't be so bad after all.

Anyway, that's my lot for now. I'm going back to play the new Championship Manager game. I'm currently managing Manchester United, mainly because they have the most money. You know what's most annoying about this game? I went 15 games unbeaten, I was second in the Premiership, I was unbeaten in the Champion's League, and I lose ONE game, the chairman gets on my back, the players complain that the team is underachieving (including my new £8.5 mill 20 year old Italian wonder kid), and the fans organize a massive protest at my training ground. And all because I play a 16 year old unknown lad from Denmark called Mads Timm in Paul Scholes' position. Hey, Paul isn't complaining - well, he didn't complain when he signed that £20 mill, 10 year contract! If managing a real football team is like this, I'll stick to working in a garden centre! In case you don't read my column again this year, Merry Christmas! Until next