Tuesday 19 August 2014

AWBA: Streaks

Disclaimer: Taking a different tact with today's article. Not sure where it's gonna go to be honest. Bit more personal than usual.

2014 seems to be the year of Streaks in wrestling. The Undertaker was finally defeated at Wrestlemania, putting an end to his 21-match long undefeated streak.  Bo Dallas debuted on the WWE main roster and embarked on his own undefeated streak that lasted to "17 and Bo" before he finally felt defeat at the hands of R-Truth.

On the other end of the spectrum, Scottish wrestler Bete Noire is currently on a streak of defeat in Fierce Females, appearing on all 6 shows so far but failing to capture a victory yet.

I was thinking about all these streaks a number of weeks ago when ICW announced they would be putting on four shows across four weeks in Edinburgh in the month of August. From a pure fan's perspective, I was happy for the company. These shows would no doubt sell out, and being able to sell out the same venue four weeks in a row is no small feat. But on a personal level, I felt incredibly sad for my girlfriend.

From her very first show, December's 100% Shenanigans, she has prided herself on not missing a single one. This includes the end of year Awards show, a hellacious drive to Newcastle that she endured, and travelling to both London shows (without me I may add!)

I remember back in April/May I had arranged to go to America. I was ecstatic. But then ICW announced the first ever (I think) back-to-back shows - on the two Sundays I would be out of the country! Off she went to Show Me Your Lizard in Glasgow and the first London show with our pal John, and all I had were results and second-hand stories. When I first invited her to see ICW I never thought I'd see the day she'd be travelling down to London without me to see it. Still, that is the allure of wrestling isn't it, and I was incredibly happy that she had taken to it with such gusto and excitement.

However, her proud Streak was now going to be coming to an end. It was going to be impossible for us to attend all four Edinburgh shows. The streak was over, ending with Shug's Hoose Party.

"How many shows did you manage to make in a row then?" I asked her not long after Shug's.

100% Shenanigans in The Garage, Glasgow
2013 Awards Show in The Classic Grand, Glasgow
3rd Annual Square Go in The Garage, Glasgow
The Goggles! They Do Nothing in Studio 24, Edinburgh
Still Smokin' in The ABC, Glasgow
Show Me Your Lizard in The Garage, Glasgow
A Show In London in the O2 Academy, London
Up And Atom in Studio 24, Edinburgh
Jimmy Nail's Revenge in Riverside, Newcastle
What's Your Boggle? in the O2 Academy, London
Shug's Hoose Party in The ABC, Glasgow

2 countries
6 venues
11 events

An impressive streak, no doubt. As it stood, we did indeed miss the first three Edinburgh shows. Although we will be attending next week's Ice To See You event, even though we were lovingly provided with Live Results, despite all the tickets for future events taking over our kitchen counter, somethings not the same. A little bit of the shine has been taken off. We may embark on other streaks, maybe together we will attend the next 50 shows, but it's just not the same really is it? Something magical has ended.

This all got me thinking back to my first ICW show, back in December 2012. Santa Gravy. It was a random night out for my birthday, much like 100% Shenanigans was for my girlfriend, but I was instantly hooked. I didn't know entirely what or why, all I knew was I wanted more.

I knew nothing about the Awards Night that year in the La Cala Bar, and even if I did, I wouldn't have attended. I was far too new to ICW and although I enjoyed it, an Awards Night just seems like something for fans that had been to more than one event.

After that, I attended the 2nd Annual Square Go which utterly enthralled me from start to finish. I wanted to attend ICW's first Edinburgh show, Tramspotting, but I had no-one to go with and, frankly, Edinburgh can be a bit of a pain in the ass to get to. But The Garage in Glasgow isn't, and thankfully the next five ICW shows were taking place in that very venue. My own "streak" had begun.

Get To Da Choppa in The Garage, Glasgow
Get Your Rat Oot in The Garage, Glasgow
Reservoir Dogs in The Garage, Glasgow
Flava In Yer Ear in The Garage, Glasgow
Terminator 2: Judgement Day in The Garage, Glasgow
Dave's Not Here Man in The Picture House, Edinburgh
There's Something About Maryhill in the Maryhill Community Halls
Fear & Loathing VI in The ABC, Glasgow
Fear & Lothian in Studio 24, Edinburgh
100% Shenanigans in The Garage, Glasgow
2013 Awards Show in The Classic Grand, Glasgow
3rd Annual Square Go in The Garage, Glasgow
The Goggles! They Do Nothing in Studio 24, Edinburgh
Still Smokin' in The ABC, Glasgow

1 country
6 venues
14 events

Now, I consider myself an ICW fanatic in a way, but it took me three or four months to really start a proper run of ICW shows. My girlfriend leaped right in a the deep end and took a long-ass swim. That, to me, is even more impressive, but I'm pretty pleased with my own run of shows. Still heartbroken that I missed Lizard and the first (and second) London shows. But them's the breaks I suppose.

Like I said at the start, I didn't really know where I was going with this, I just wanted to talk about ICW events and take a moment to reflect on how phenomenally addicting and entertaining they are that, right from the very start, we find ourselves going here, there and everywhere, spending countless money on fuel, travel, tickets and other sundries to get the privilege of watching these fantastic men and women put their bodies on the line for our entertainment.

I hope you've enjoyed this slight look into my own ICW journey and hope it has made you take a moment to reflect upon yours. I would love to hear about your own "Attendance Streak" in the comments or whatever. It's nice sometimes to take a step back and appreciate all the awesome shows ICW have already put on, as well as looking forward to the future.

It's also nice to have a girlfriend who is as heavily obsessed with wrestling as I am, even if she does like Dickie Divers and The NAK.

lol love you dearest :) here's to our future Streak, starting Sunday night!

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