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Posted On 09/16/2012 By In Columns

Tea Time with Liam: Reality Check

Hello everybody, Liam here once again. Late as always yada yada yada. Time for another edition of Tea Time with Liam. I’m sure you’re all probably sick reading that I’m lazy every time you see a column from me. So no smart ass comments from me. Lets get straight into the column and talk about the one thing the wrestling would has been focused on this week.

I was going to write this on Monday, after Raw had finished. I decided to hold off. I didn’t want to write without knowing as many facts as possible and when you’re dealing with Wrestling, facts are hard to come by on the internet. I’ve been looking on the WWE website, I’ve been waiting for tweets from people like JR, Michael Cole and numerous WWE wrestlers and employees. I had an initial column already planned in advance,. It was actually going to be a little rant on something that’s been happening in the WWE lately. But then, during Raw this past Monday, something terrible happened. Jerry “The King” Lawler suffered a heart attack while doing his commentary duties, From the moment Cole acknowledged it at the desk. The rest of Raw became an afterthought, to me anyway. All I wanted to know was Jerry Lawler going to be okay.

With wrestling fans, what I see time and time again is that sometimes we’re not able to identify the character and the person playing the character. I’m going to count myself in this. Numerous times I’ve said that I hate a particular person on people in WWE and sometimes when you get yourself caught in the headlights of the situation where you start to hate the person behind the character. With King,, there is a general consensus that he may be past his best at announcing or that he doesn’t fit the baby face colour analyst role. But when I saw the outpouring of tweets and Facebook messages about him. The majority of the responses were even though people didn’t like his commentary, everyone wanted him to pull through. I’d like to say that 99% of comments were all from well wisher and of course in these situations you get the 1% who like to troll and make a joke about it.

What I got from this situation was a coming together. Regardless whether you liked King or loathed him. Whether you were a casual wrestling fan, a diehard wresting fan or an internet wrestling fan. TNA fan, ROH fan, any type of wrestling fan at all. No matter what you opinion was on any company or person, the one major message was clear. That message was “get well soon Jerry, you can beat this.” It’s a situation where people cast aside their negativity about the person or the show. Extreme circumstances often bring people together. We’re sometimes reminded that there’s bigger things in life than wrestling. We all got a big chunk of that reality when news of Jerry’s heart attack spread and Michael Cole informed us on Raw.

As I mentioned earlier. All week long myself along with many other fans have waited for updates on Jerry’s status. For the most part, he seems to be out of any immediate danger, has held phone calls with a number of people and even managed to record a tout message, thanking everyone for their well wishers and for keeping him in their thoughts. I’m sure when these situations arise, people instantly assume the worst will happen, its only human nature to worry. So it was fantastic news to hear that Jerry is well on the road to recovery. As for him wrestling or commentating again, I guess that’s down for Jerry and the doctors to decide.

I feel like I’m going to repeat myself a lot of times in this column, like I said earlier, the final hour of Raw was kind of irrelevant to me and I’m sure a lot of you guys too. I have to give a lot of credit to the wresters who had to go on air after Jerry’s heart attack. The crowd were out of it and that was understandable, plus the wrestlers would have been worried too, so for them to come out and do their stuff in a professional manner, you have to give major credit to them. Emotions would have been running high over those few hours. Speaking of professionalism, Michael Cole did a fantastic job coping under the strain of the situation. Trying is hardest to carry on with commentary during the Kane/Bryan vs. Prime time players match. When giving the updates on Raw, although clearly upset for his friend, he kept it together. And whether the lines were fed to him or not. He was put into a very difficult situation and coped with it remarkably well.

Some people were annoyed by the fact that WWE continued to air the rest of Raw, instead of cancelling the final hour. I’m sure the thought probably did cross Vince’s but it would have been a very difficult call to make on whether or not to carry on airing Raw. I’m not comparing this to the Owen Hart accident but back then, WWE came under intense scrutiny for keeping the show running, even though it was a PPV.

The old cliché is that the show must go on. I read a tweet earlier in the week. If I recall it was from Shane Helms. His view was that of if he were ever to be taken ill during a show. He wouldn’t of wanted to be the reason for a show being cancelled or ending early. Jerry Lawler comes from an old school background in Memphis so I could understand the show must go on concept. I’m sure Jerry, having spent a lot of years in the wrestling business, wouldn’t want to be the cause of shows being stopped.

There is a list. It seems to get longer year on year. Pro wrestler who have died while still young. Now I agree Jerry Lawler isn’t exactly young anymore but he is only in his early 60’s Not to mention he’s been in wresting on decades so he’s not exactly out of shape. I think we as fans sometimes just focus on the larger than life characters that we see on TV and forget that behind the scenes, these people are just the same as everyone else. Just skin and bones. It’s a strange situation to see somebody who we’ve all been used to seeing on TV for decades to be taken ill so suddenly.

So I hope you continue to keep Jerry in your thoughts. For those of you who pray. Keep him in your prayers too. I’m sure he’ll be overwhelmed with the thousands of messages of support from all around the world over this past week. This week has reminded us all that wrestling is just one small part of our lives. A part which became insignificant during the final hour of Raw. It was a time when brand or show loyalty was forgotten, and no matter where you lived in the world, every wrestling fan was saying “get well soon Jerry, you can beat this.”

Time for the plugs

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Until next time. Thanks for reading.