Bar-Jutsu Interview

Indy Mayhem Show 85

Guest: Bar-Jutsu

Original Air Date: 09/02/2015

Listen or watch here

Bar- JutsuSorg: We’re going to be learning a bit tonight.  I discovered these guys thanks to PodCamp Pittsburgh a few weeks ago.  And, we’ve got in our study to tell us more about Bar-Jutsu and so much more is James Matthew of

James: Hi everybody.  How’s it going.  Doing pretty good.

Sorg: Now, you are the guy behind Bar-Jutsu, right?

James: I am the guy.  I am the creator of Bar-Jutsu. 

Sorg: We’ll skip the preliminary wrestling questions.  We do have a wrestling connection, like moreso than I thought.  We’ve gone deeper down the rabbit hole tonight.

James: We have. 

Sorg: And, that’s not a metaphor for anything we might have been talking about earlier.  I apologize for that again.  First of all.  What the heck is Bar-Jutsu?

James: Bar-Jutsu is the American art of bar fighting.  It’s an American version of Nin-Jutsu.  Bascially what I do is I take out the bow staffs and I replace it with a pool stick.  I’ve been doing martial arts my whole life.  Oh, there I am right there.  But, I taught a lot of outdoor classes, and most of my students were adults – usually in their 20s or something.  And, a lot of times I’d be referring to, “You would do this technique in a bar.”  So, it got me thinking one day after doing all these classes it’d be funny to write something like a glorified bathroom reading material book, where instead of being like a bunch of guys in uniforms and stuff and everything doing these techniques, you could kind of relate it as kind of like bar fighting.  So, I wrote this book.  I just wrote it in a notebook.  Thought maybe I’d print it up at Kinko’s or something.  And, I thought it needed a catchy name.  So, I teach Nin-Jutsu, certified in Nin-Jutsu, so I just made it Bar-Jutsu and then elaborated a little bit more on that, and it ultimately became Bar-Jutsu: The American Art of Bar Fighting.  There’s always like, Japanese something, or Korean something.  So, now you have the American art of bar fighting.  That’s pretty much it. 

Sorg: That’s awesome. And, how long has Bar-Jutsu been out there?  This is the first I’ve come across it, around the talk over PodCamp Pittsburgh.  I can’t remember.  I saw a tweet from you guys retweeted by somebody that was going to be there.  And, I watched the video we were just showing, which was like with the training montage and everything.  And, I’m just like, “I’m freaking hooked on this thing.”

James: Well, thank you.

Sorg: It was like the kind of – and it looks like you did that a little while ago, right? 

James: Yeah.  That video was done in 2012.  I wrote the book in 2010.  Started pitching it.  Finally got accepted in the beginning of 2011 by Tuttle Publishing.  And, it took a while going through rewrites and everything.  It finally came out in stores January 21, 2014.  And, I just got word yesterday that basically the first edition of it has been sold out.  They sold so many that they’re releasing a second edition February, 2016.  Luckily for you guys, unlucky for me, it’s going to be a cheaper, smaller version.  If you want one of the originals, you’ve got to get it now at Barnes & Noble or  You can really pick it up anywhere, which is shocking to me because I never thought – I’m not a professional writer.  I never thought that I would write a book that you could walk into Barnes & Noble and pick it up.  Nobody ever really took me seriously.  But, it was something that I was really passionate about.  It was one of those things where I had the idea, and people started telling me, “You know, this is actually kind of funny.”  Because it is.  It’s not meant to be taken as serious as any other martial arts book that you have out there.  It’s a humorous but educational self-defense book.

Sorg: Right.

James: What we do is, we mix it up.  We show you self-defense techniques but we put them in funny scenarios and then in between the chapters, or the lessons what we call them, we have stories that people have submitted to us where they talk about bar fights that they were in where they get their asses handed to them.  But, it’s a fun read.  It’s really colorful.  It’s a full-color book.  A lot of pictures.  Everybody always asks me, they’re like, “Dude.  I don’t want to read a martial arts book.  Does it have a lot of pictures?”  I say, “Yeah.  It has a lot of pictures.”

Sorg: There you go.  You said, it’s kind of like a bathroom-kind of book a little bit, too.

James: It is.  It’s glorified bathroom reading material.  And, it was funny when the publisher, when they had me on Skype to do the final pitch, I’m sitting there thinking, “What’s the Harvard answer I could give them to how to pitch this?”  And, I couldn’t think of it.  So, I was, “You know what. Screw it.” I was like, “Look guys.  This is just something that somebody’s going to want to read in the bathroom.”  Something that’s just fun and it’s going to give you hemorrhoids because you don’t want to put it down.  And, that was the line that got it sold.  They were like, “We like that.  We like that it’s bathroom reading material.”  And, that’s pretty much where we went from there.  We have 2 more books coming out – kind of waiting in between.  I don’t want to put them back-to-back-to-back and put them out there, but we have a couple more written and should be hopefully coming out soon.  If the rerelease is 2016, then I’m hoping that Book 2 will come out either late 2016 or beginning of 2017.

Sorg: That’s awesome that you’ve got a few in the can there.  Now, what captured me was, well first of all, there’s got to be a story behind this crazy belt going on here.

James: There is a story.

Sorg: Now, you told, me, you were like, “Well, I don’t know if I should wear this.  It’s a little weird.  Plus, I’m just not good at holding belts.  I don’t have the muscles.”

James: You look fabulous in it.

Sorg: I don’t have the muscles and stuff, man.  I’m a lowly podcaster and video editor.  C’mon man.  How did this come about?

James: I started pro wrestling back in ’96.

Sorg: Which was the interesting connection. I was like, “What?”

James: It was!  So I started doing it back in ’96, and wrestling’s always been in my life.  I’ve always loved wrestling.  And, it was easy because I always felt like I needed this martial arts background, and do all these things, blah, blah, blah, blah.  So, when I finally got out of wrestling in 2009 I decided to keep that part of my life close to me.  When I developed Bar-Jutsu: The American Art of Bar Fighting.  I have to keep saying that, to plug it like that.

Sorg: I was going to say.

James: The whole name like that.

Sorg: I love that giant name.  It’s like, oh, it’s the World Wrestling Federation.  “The WWF?”  Yes, the World Wrestling Federation.

James: When I created it, it felt like it needed a lot more things.  So, I created the Bar-Jutsu Girls, kind of like the Hooters Girls, but these are the girls that go into the bars wearing our logo, our beer truck’s logo, and they go in and promote the book, talk about it.  They flirt with the guys.  There’s Juliana – that’s one of our girls.  These are not our girls.  So we have the Bar-Jutsu Girls.  I actually have a set of beerchucks.  They are very fragile.  But, I created an actual set of beerchucks just to make sure that it wasn’t just a cool logo.  And, they’re swingable – you can swing them.  But, it still wasn’t enough.  So, I had the Bar-Jutsu Girls.  I had the beerchucks.  I’m like, “I’m missing something else.”  So, I started throwing the shirts on wrestlers like Kevin Nash, Tammy, Sonni – you guys love Sonni.  Sonni wears them for me.

Sorg: Big fan.

James: Eugene.  A lot of guys just, you know, I would go to shows.  Christian York was a big fan of it.  There’s Robby and his ex, I guess now, right?  But, everybody, they just snag up – that’s the original Bar-Jutsu Championship Belt.  Mike Blade, our champion – he’s holding it there.

Sorg: It almost looks like a sawblade.

James: It is actually a big bottle cap.  And, we had 2 logos – we had the bottle cap logo, and we had the beerchucks logo.  And, the publisher said to us, “You know, you’re going to confuse people.  The bottle cap logo is really cool, but the beerchucks logo it stands out more.  It’s more noticeable.”  So, try not to use the bottle cap as much because it will make it a secondary logo.  You’ll see that around occasionally.  Some old school shirts will have it on there.  But, we mainly stick with the beerchucks logo no.  But, getting back to the belts.  I always kept my ties with the workers, the boys in the locker room and everything.  And, I felt like, “You know.  Shirts aren’t just going to cut it.”  So, we started – I created the Version 1 of the Bar-Jutsu belt.  Mike Blade started wearing it.  There’s New Jack with he original logo.  New Jack was a big supporter of us in the beginning.  But, then Dave Milliken got wind of it, and he saw it.  And, he thought it was really cool.  And, he asked me who made the first logo – the bottle cap logo.  I said I did.  On the side, as every other belt mark in the world, I make championship belts.  Now, I don’t do it like Dave Milliken does.  I don’t CNC it or anything.  I engrave it.  He’s like, “Who made that?”  And, I’m like, “I did.”  And, he’s like, “What’s it made out of?”  I’m like, “It’s a stop sign.”  He’s like, “What?”  I’m like, “Yeah.  It’s a stop sign.”  So he’s like, “You know, we can do better than that.”  So me and him kind of got together online and we went over some designs, and I said, “I am a huge mark for the old school IC belt.”  So we had the logo put on there and the side plates were originally 2 bottle caps.  And, then we had the American flags on it.  I said to him, “I really want to avoid using bottle caps on the side plates because it’s going to look like ninja stars.  People are going to confuse it with ninja stars.”  So we kept it to circles with the beerchucks on it, and that’s how we got Version 2.  So, you are now holding upside down.

Sorg: Oh damn. I’m John Cenaing this thing.  I’m sorry.

James: What a great reference. 

Sorg: What’s the flag upside down for?  I don’t get that.  That seems weird.

James: Yeah.  You are now holding Version 2.  Dave Milliken, he’s just a really nice guy.  And, he offered to make that.  We had a deal, so we made it.  We got that. And, now Mike Blade defends it at the shows.  He works a lot of indy shows around here, and I let him wear it.  Mike’s a really good friend of mine.  I met him in ’96 and he truly – and I’m not trying to get all emotional here, because I want to try to stay with the comedy side of it, but Mike is more of a champion than I could ever have anyone wearing it.  A lot of people don’t know this, and I don’t think he’d have a problem with me saying it now, but Mike was diagnosed with cancer about maybe a year or two ago, and he was able to beat it.  I was real happy for him, real proud for him.  And, I told him – it was funny, because when I first made him the champion, I was like, “Yeah.  Congratulations.  You’re the champ.  Don’t be mad when you have to drop it at a couple shows whenever we bring in Christian York and stuff.”  So, he was like, “No.”  And then he told me about the cancer, and he went through the whole thing.  He lost his hair went through the chemo.  And, I remember the day he called me, and he was like, “Dude.  I’m free.  I’m clear.  I don’t have any more cancer in me.”  And, I was like, “You know what, dude.  You will never drop that strap.”  That is more than I can hope for a champion.  He’s a really awesome guy.  I love him to death.  It’s Mike Blade.  He’s a Pittsburgh legend.  I don’t care who debates that.  If anybody out there says Mike Blade, he’s no legend.  He’s just a worker with long hair – looks like Danzig.  Fuck you.

Sorg: I guess he does a little bit.

James: Am I allowed to curse on here?

Sorg: Yeah.  You’re allowed.  You’re good.

James: Sorry.  Fucking people.

Sorg: And, he’s somebody – I didn’t know any of his history or anything.  He’s somebody that’s popped up at RWA a couple of shows.  And again, I’m like, “Who’s this guy?”  No, I didn’t know there was so much behind him.

James: Yeah.  He’s actually going to be defending it September 13th.  A new promotion popping up.  Is that okay to say?

Sorg: Yeah.  That’s fine.  Go ahead and plug it.

James: Yeah, so CWR – Code Red Wrestling.  They’re going to be here in the South Hills of Pittsburgh.  I don’t know much details on the show. I just know that they contacted me, asked me if Mike Blade could defend the title.  And, I said, “Yeah.  Sure.”  It was an honor to be asked to do that.  And, Mike was happy to do that.  Hopefully it’ll be a good show. 

Sorg: And, that is a new promotion actually.  Sera Feeney that we’ve had early on in this show is a part of that, along with Fleck.  It’ll be interesting to see what comes from that.  I have my opinions on the number of wrestling promotions already in this area, but I wish them the best of luck in general.  But, that’s cool that they got that involved.  And, it’s definitely something a little different going on with that.  So, it’ll be interesting to see what comes from there.  I think I’ve showed, Virgil also has the belt as well, but we have a little story about that over on the Mayhem Show Gold if you guys want to check us out on Patreon for that.  So, you got the wrestling connection.  *Sorg dropped the belt.*  Sorry.  I’m John Cenaing this thing.  It is heavy.  I’ve held a lot of belts, and Wheelz in there – he’s a bit of a belt mark himself.  And, he’s already said that he wants me to tell you that he wants this championship.  He’ll take you on in a handicap match.  He’s in a wheelchair, so there you go.  Anyway, so obviously your wrestling connection – you’re a longtime wrestling – what did you wrestler under?  What was your name?

James: I was Van Hughes.  More importantly, I was the Steel City Machine – Van Hughes.  People hated me.  The crowd hated me, and the workers hated me.  No.  I got along with a lot of workers, like a brother of mine, Justin Idol.  I love the guy to death.

Sorg: Yeah.  We know Idol.

James: I was there when he started.  He trained in our school and everything.  But, he’s one of the guys – and the guys out in AIW, Cleveland – Johnny Thorn.  Love you Thorny!  I don’t know if he’s listening.  Hopefully.  Chris Brian.  Chandler Biggins.  Love those guys.  There’s only a handful of guys out there that actually, you know, I would take a bullet for.  Really good guys.  When I started training under New Jack, he would tell me all the time, “Dude, you really got to live up to your gimmick.  You’ve got to believe it so that whenever you go out there, people are going to believe it.”  So, I kind of developed that habit of when you walk in to the locker room, you know, you are Van Hughes.  Alright, James, he’s at home so Van Hughes is here today.  And, I had that dick persona.  I was a superstar.  I wasn’t a superstar, but I had to keep it in there.  And, then as soon as the match was over, I was like, “Huh.  Okay, he’s gone.  He’s done for the night.”  But, a lot of people just would buy it.  Either I was that good and people were like, “Holy shit.  This dude is a wrecking machine.”  Or they were just like, “Fuck him.  He’s an asshole.”  But, either way.  It was like, I said, it was hard.  You mentioned Jason Gory.  I love Gory.  You had mentioned him before, and I think in the beginning he was kind of like, “Van Hughes.  What a dick.”  And, then it took him a while, he’s like, “actually he’s kind of a cool guy.”

Sorg: And, that’s another guy that we talk about on the show that’s really taken his gimmick to another level with the Generation Dead stuff with Raver and the other guys out there.  One of those guys – every time I have a new guy at ringside and he comes out, I’m like, “Get his face.  Just get his face.  If you do nothing else, get his face for the entrance.”  You know something’s happening there.

James: He’s beautiful.  I’ll tell you what – he is one guy.  I haven’t seen – I haven’t been to an indy show in a while.  But, any indy show that I’ve been at, Gory’s always been at.  And, he is one guy that’s always throwing himself into the match.  He gives 110%.  Not to be cliché – gives 110%.  And, he’s one of those guys that he gets it.  He’s like, “I get that there’s a crowd here watching us.  I understand that we are here performing for them.  So, I’ve got to interact with them just a little bit to get them into the show.”  He’s one of those guys that gets it.  And, that’s what pisses me off about the business.  Because, you’ve got guys like that.  But, he just doesn’t get the pushes that he needs to get up into the big times.  That’s why I would sit and watch hours of indy wrestling before I would ever watch WWE.  It’s just because indy workers, they know how to do to it.  They know how to get the crowd into it.  They know how to get the pops.  They’re into it.

Sorg: We talk about often that intimacy.  You get something on a whole other level at that point.

James: It’s rare to see psychology in a match anymore.  Pittsburgh, I’m sure everybody knows at one time was going to be the wrestling capital of the world.  I know you had to choose between Pittsburgh and Memphis, and they ended up going with Memphis.  But, Pittsburgh, everybody shits on indy shows.  They’re like, “Eh.  It’s just an indy show, or whatever.”  You can always guarantee that you’re going to get good matches – not every match is going to be great.  But, you’re always going to have somebody there that’s worth watching.  Even if you sat through 3 hours of a shit show.  I guarantee there’s going to be one match where somebody was like – even like Façade.  I love watching Façade.  You watch guys like that, and you’re just like, “I’m so glad I came here.” 

Sorg: And, you see that resonate.  One of the anecdotes I have is the one show in Cleveland I was at.  Eamon, you were there, too – where Kevin Nash was on the show.  We’re at intermission and I’m like, Façade’s line is longer than Kevin Nash.  You can tell.  There’s that connection.  I did some quicky research as I do during the show here, I think I found your wrestling database.

James: Oh my God.  Get rid of that.  Right. Now.  I can’t.  I didn’t even know that existed.

Sorg: There you go.  They don’t have a lot of matches listed for you.  There’s a lot of question marks in here, but yeah.  There you are.  Our research department.

James: That’s from Combat Zone. 

Sorg: It’s from Combat Zone?

James: Yes.  I worked the, what was it, the Death Match.  The Gauntlet.  I can’t remember.  It was in 2003 or something.  But, that is awful.  Look at El Fatador.  Wow.  That is like pre-tattoo.  That is when I started getting the ink because Jack was like, “Dude, you need some fucking ink.”  I started getting ink, and then he’s like, “What are you going to do with your 13-year-old haircut?”  I was like, “I guess I’m going to start shaving my head?”  And he was like, “Oh.  That sounds good”  So then I started shaving my head and everything.  You’ll find that – you’ll see the difference between that picture and if you see the XXFW – I don’t know if you YouTube the XXFW birth DVD, you’ll see a short clip of me.

Sorg: The birth?

James: D-a-b-i-r-f.  Dabirf.  That was when we started XXFW out in Cincinnati, which is actually a pretty good run.

Sorg: They have a DVD sneak preview of something.  Dabirf!

James: There it is.  Look.  You see me in the bottom?  I don’t even know what jersey I’m wearing, but I’m wearing some Steelers jersey or something. 

Sorg: These were the days, I’m sure.  Are these pre Bar-Jutsu Girls?  Is that what’s happening here?

James: No.  God no.  Those are the junkies from Cincinnati.  They were all junkies.

Sorg: Look at ‘em go!  Dabirf. 

James: I don’t know which this is, but there’s a commercial for Dabirf.  And, Jack actually had a really good idea when we were doing that show.  We were both, not together at the same time, we were both bounty hunters at one time.  And, when we were traveling we were talking about it one day. And, he calls me up.  He’s like, “Van, I got an idea for a show.”  I’m like, “Okay.”  He’s like, “I called up Kevin Klinerock and he’s going to fly in and we’re going to film the show.”  So, he had this idea for a bounty hunter show where we were bounty hunters during the week, and it’s crazy because if you see the clip I’m 305 pounds in it.  I’m huge.  We would skip trace during the week, and then on the weekends we would run XXFW.  It would have clips of him, like me and him were watching the monitors in the back, and he’s smacking me – telling me how I booked a shit match and stuff.  And, I’m like, “Dude are you serious?”  And, he’s like, “No.  It’s for the cameras, man.”  But, he had a really good idea for the XXFW thing.  Remember when Piper did Body Slam and they did the Rock ‘n Wrestling?

Sorg: Yeah.

James: He did that.  And, I was kind of against it in the beginning. I was like, “Eh.  I don’t know.  We’ll see how it goes.” But, he was like, “Alright.  This is what we’re going to do.  We’re going to do 3 matches.  Then we’re going to bring out a local rap star.  We’re going to let him do a song.  Then we’re going to do another 3 matches.  We’re going to bring out another rapper.  And, then we’re going to do the cool main events – 2 matches.”  He was like, “Never more than 8 a show.”  Never more than 8 matches.  And, he packed the house every night.  We had the Fire Marshall come in and say, “You’ve got too many people in here.”  So we had to turn people away.  We ran 4 shows and then the guy that owned the building started complaining that he wanted more money, and Jack was like, “I got the footage that I needed for the bounty hunter show, so fuck you.”  And we ended up closing the doors.  So, I didn’t care because I didn’t want to drive from Pittsburgh to Cincinnati every other fucking weekend.  It was getting old.  But, it was fun.  A lot of people knock Jack.  They’re like, “Oh, you know.  He just hits people with shit, and he doesn’t really know how to work a match.”  Jack took me under his wing and trained me from 2005 til about ’08.  That’s whenever I stopped traveling with him.  And, he showed me a lot.  You could totally tell the difference between my matches before 2005 and then after.  The guy, he can work.  It’s shocking to see New Jack do an arm drag.  Even whenever I was in the ring and we were working out, I was like, “Holy cow.  He just did an arm drag.  It’s insane.”  But, he knew a lot more about the business than he likes to play.  And, I’m sure I’m going to get a phone call from him later tonight, and he’s going to be like, “Why are you giving that stuff away?  Why are you saying that?”  But, he is very, very smart.  He went to college.  But, he knew so much more about the business than I ever thought that he would know.  He was an awesome guy.  A lot of people were like, “Oh, you know he stabbed people.  And, he did this.  And, he was in jail.”  So what.  He was one of the sweetest guys I ever met.  I’m sure I’m going to pay for that comment.  But, he was.  He was just great.  When I started doing the Bar-Jutsu thing, and he had moved on.  I retired.  I had a daughter.  I literally – my last show was November 8, 2009.  It was one week after my daughter was born.  I was lacing up my boots.  I was in West Newton at an RWA show, and I was getting ready to work a match.  I’m in the locker room, and the guy’s telling me how he wants to go over stuff, and I’m like, “Let’s just keep it basic.”  And, he’s like, “Yeah.  How long do you want to go?”  I’m like, “8-10.  Let’s just go 8-10.”  And, I’m lacing my boots up.  The music hits.  I start walking to the ring.  I tell the ref, I’m like, “Let’s go like 4-6.”  We lock up.  I think I hit the first spot, and I was like, “We’re taking it home.”  So it was a 3-minute match.  I went over.  I went in the back.  I took my boots off, and I just said to myself.  I was like, “That’s it.  I’m done.”  And, I’ve never stepped in the ring again.

Sorg: That just changed.  And, it was gone?

James: Yeah.  It was like – I kind of wanted to stop.  I didn’t want to travel anymore.  I had my daughter.  I was always one of those dudes that’s like, “Look at you.  Walking around like I got a baby.”  And, I was like, “Shut up.”  Then, all of a sudden I had a kid.  And, I was like, “Oh my God.  I’m that dude.”  It’s just – I just lost the taste for it.  Plus, I had stopped watching wrestling about, maybe 2006 or something.  I just couldn’t take it anymore.  I couldn’t stomach it.

Sorg: And, that seems to happen.  We say, you get into wrestling to the extent like you did, or any of these guys – because you were fans first.  Right?  You were probably a long-time wrestling fan.

James: Oh yeah.

Sorg: When do you think you started watching wrestling?

James: From berf.

Sorg: From daberf?

James: From daberf. 

Sorg: And, I can understand that waning.  And, you took it to the limit. 

James: Yeah.  My dad was a steelworker, ever since I was born.  And, Jumpin Johnny DeFasio was a really good friend of his. 

Sorg: Oh wow.

James: I was always, I always hung out with him and Hurricane Hunt.  These are old, old names if anybody knows studio wrestling names.  But, I was always around those guys growing up.  And, then we used to watch it all the time and everything.  And, I remember – I want to say it was like Wrestlemania 3, the greatest Wrestlemania ever.

Sorg: Of course.

James: I remember jumping in a car and driving to somewhere in West Virginia because Pittsburgh did not have pay-per-view yet.  And, we didn’t get it.  So, I remember – not me personally driving, because that was ’86 or something like that.

Sorg: ’87?

James: But anyways, I remember getting in a car and driving really far to some dude’s house that I had no idea who he was just because he had pay-per-view, and I was like, “That’s awesome.  Will you shut up.  Can I watch this match, please?”  And, who knew it was going to have the greatest match of all time?  Let me say the greatest match of all time on video – the Steamboat/Macho Man. 

Sorg: Right.

James: But, there’s been so many.  And, to bring it back.  Not to get into the whole fed talk, here – but to bring it back into the indies, there’s been so many more matches that have just been absolutely incredible, just in the indies alone.  I’ve always had that love for the business.  And, it kind of just went from there.  But, going on the road with Jack really – I mean, it wasn’t just that last match in 2009 that put me over the edge, having my daughter.  But, going on the road with Jack really took the flavor out of my mouth.  And, I wouldn’t say it was a bad experience.  It was just – I got to become friends with Spike Dudley, and just everybody that Jack knew all of a sudden knew me.  And, I would walk into a show, and Billy Gunn, or Road Dogg, they’d be like, “Van Hughes, what’s up?”  And, I’m like, “Hey, what’s up?”  [How the fuck does this dude know who I am?]  And then I’d be like, “Oh, because he knows me because of Jack.”  So, I started meeting everyone.  And, then I kind of started seeing how everyone was.  And, even though me and Jack got along really well, Jack kept me around a lot because I was the sober guy.  I was never gassed up.  I never took pain pills.  It was funny though.  For the longest time, people were like, “You know the reason New Jack hangs out with Van Hughes is because Van Hughes supplies him with all the drugs he gets.”  And, I was like, “If I supplied him all the drugs he got, I would be rich, and I would look like Roman Reigns, and you would know that that was true.”  But, I was the sober one.  I didn’t really drink.  I could drive and everything.  So, the guys kind of liked that.  They kind of kept me around.  And, I didn’t mind it.  I was like, “Hey, you know, I’ll drive everyone everywhere.”  But seeing how these guys were.  I remember.  We were at Hardcore Homecoming.  And, I’m sitting next to Sabu.  And, he’s eating tuna.  And, he’s like, “You got a fork?”  And, I’m like, “You know what, I don’t think so.”  And, I look in the bag, and there’s one of New Jack’s forks in the bag.  And, it’s got blood from the night before.  And, I’m like, “Yeah.  But, it’s got blood on it.”  And before I could even say, “Yeah, dude, but it’s got blood on it,” Sabu starts eating the tuna with this fork. And, I’m like, “Are you kidding me?”  That’s how out of your mind this business has put you?  But, stuff like that  really just started slowly taking the flavor out of my mouth.  I think the straw that broke the camel’s back was – another cliché phrase there – but, that night, the week after my daughter was born, I was just like, “That’s it.  I’m not going to become Jerry Lynn.”  You like how I’m referencing the last show that we just did. 

Sorg: Bringing it all together.

James: I am sewing it together.

Sorg: So they watch that.  That’s good.  That’s crazy.

James: But I never – even though I stopped working, I never stayed out of touch with the boys.  I always hit everyone up just because I love them all.  They were all great.  And even, with Tammy, I had run into Tammy on some shows.  And, we never really hit it off or anything, because her and Jack had a little history.  But, I had seen her on some shows.  And, when the whole Bar-Jutsu thing started, I was like, “You know what, I need the yin and yang thing.  I need something.  I need the female part to take over.”  Because, I didn’t write Bar-Jutsu for me.  I didn’t want to be like, “Hey.  I’m James, and I’m the Bar-Jutsu guy.”  I wanted Bar-Jutsu to take off and be like a household name.  So, if you look in the book, a lot of the shots have me wearing a hat because I try to take the focus off my face.  I’m like, you know I did the wrestling thing.  I don’t need to be in the spotlight anymore.  I want to create something that takes on a life of its own.  But, I also needed another voice that could stand out in front of it.  So, I was like, “You know what.  I know Tammy’s had a lot of issues going on.  And, she’s been involved in bar fights.  Maybe I’ll hit her up.  I’ll reach out to her.  Where is she now?  Oh, oh prison?  She’s in prison.  Well, it should be easy to find her.”  So, I tracked her down, and I wrote a letter to her.  I was like, “Hey, you know, I’m sure you don’t remember me, and this, that, and this.  But, I’m sure you’re going through some hard times and everything, and I just hope everything’s going well.”  And I was like, “It’s not going to work.  I’m going to reach out to her, and if she doesn’t write back, she doesn’t write back.  It’s not that big of a deal.”  A couple weeks later I get this letter, an my wife is like, “Who’s Tammy Sitch?  Who’s Tamara Sitch?”  And, I’m like, “You’re kidding me?  She wrote me back?”  So we started corresponding.  We started writing back and forth, and I said to her, “You know.  I know you have some troubles.  And, I’m not trying to exploit that.”  I said, “But, you would be the perfect co-host for something that I’m working on.”  And, she really liked it.  She thought it was a great idea, and she started helping me out.  She started promoting it.  She started getting a lot more guys wearing my shirts – a lot of guys talking about it.  It really started taking off.  So, I owe her a lot.  I still talk to her today.  She came into Pittsburgh a couple summers ago, and we filmed a pilot for a show.  It didn’t get picked up.  It was going to get picked up, but then it was a long story.

Sorg: Looks like there’s bits of them on your YouTube channel?

James: There are.  Yeah.  We were jumping back and forth with what the format of the show was going to be.  How it was going to go down.  And, everybody had different opinions and stuff.  And, she had a lot more things getting ready to go on, so she was like, “Well, if it ever takes off, let me know and I’ll be back.”  But, she’s always stayed in touch.  And, she’s been great about it.  And, like I said, she’s like the most controversial person in the world.  And, she’s tough.  She’s a touch chick.  And, she’s probably going to punch me in the face for referring to her as a chick. 

Sorg: That’s okay.  Just make her listen to the last episode after that and she’ll be fine with whatever the heck you said. 

James: Right. 

Sorg: Bringing it back around again.

James: And, it’s funny though.  Every time something would pop up on the dirt sheets, I texted her.  And, I’d be like, “Yep.  I read it.”  I’d be like, “I don’t even want to know if it’s true or not.  I just want you to know that I read it, and I could care less.”  She’s actually – like I said, she’s really sweet.  When the cameras and microphones are off and everything, she’s a completely different person.  She’s pretty awesome.

Sorg: I know I head nothing but good things working with her for a Night of Legends show a few years back.

James: I feel like I’ve been yakking your ear off.

Sorg: No.  This is awesome.  This is great.  And, it’s longer I get to hold this belt.  So, I’m okay with this.  We’re going to go a little over. Garza, we’ll talk about Battle of Los Angeles a little bit later.  That’s fine.  You’re in another time zone anyway.  You can wait.

James: Is he in LA?

Sorg: No.  He’s in El Paso. 

James: El Paso.

Sorg: He was there over the weekend, so I don’t know.  But, this is awesome.  So Bar-Jutsu.  Of course, Code Red Wrestling, or whatever they’re calling that show because I know there’s a weird name thing going on.  So, this belt here will be defended there.  You can check that out.  What is that, September 20th?

James: September 13th.  I think it’s from 2-5.  It’s a Sunday, which is weird.  It’s funny, too.  Because September 13th, it’s my anniversary, and they asked me – they were like, “Are you going to be at the show?  Because we’re defending your title.”  And, I went, “Well, it’s my anniversary.”  And, she goes, “Yeah, I know.  But, do you think that you’re going to make it?”  And there was just this long pause on the phone, and she was like, “Are you still there?”  And, I’m like, “It’s my anniversary.”  She goes, “Well, we’d love for you to be there.”  And, I was like, “Okay.”  And, I turned to my wife.  I was like, “Hey, Babe.  On September 13th, there’s this wrestling show.”  And she just was like, “You’re sleeping on the couch tonight.”  I went, “I don’t known Sera.  We’ll work it out.  We’ll see.”  But, I’ve been yakking so much about the wrestling thing, I haven’t even begun to plug our bar events – like our beer pong tournaments.

Sorg: Get it out.  You’ve got a ping-pong event, or a beer pong event.

James: So, there you go.  And, it kills me to stray away from the wrestling talk because it works me into it.  I always tell people, I’m like, “Wrestling sucks.  I hate it.  I don’t watch it anymore.”  I still love it.  I guess so.  I’m still a mark for it.  But, to keep the Bar-Jutsu name going, I created a company called Bar-Jutsu Entertainment, LLC.  What we do is, we go from bar to bar in the Pittsburgh area.  We’ve been asked to go outside of Pittsburgh, but I kind of don’t have the time or money at the moment to start doing these traveling shows – which is one of the reasons why our pilot never got picked up.  But, we go from bar to bar and we do things like beer pong tournaments and air guitar, air band things.  There it is right there.

Sorg: Oooh.  Might you think about bringing air sex into the Pittsburgh area.  Because I know somebody that knows a guy, that knows a competition. 

James: What is it?

Sorg: Air sex.  I don’t know.  Eamon, can you explain this to him?

James: Air sex?

Sorg: There’s a movie about it.

Eamon: There is a movie about it.  We had Chris on not too long ago to discuss the art of air sex.  It’s kind of self-explanatory.

James: Yeah.  That’s interesting. I’m going to go ahead and say no on that. 

Eamon: That’s fine. 

James: We get – I tell you, it gets pretty exciting.  The beer pong tournaments, we have championship belts.  We have real championship belts that we use.  It gets really heated.  It gets as heated as a wrestling match.  People mother-f each other left and right.  And, I get nervous because I think during these tournaments there’s going to be fights.  But, everybody ends up shaking hands and hugging at the end.  It turns out to be a great time.  We have one coming up September 19th at Gorman’s Pub in Brentood here, up on 51. 

Sorg: That’s up the road. 

James: That is our 3-year anniversary show.  It’s a big show.  We’ve got Pittsburgh Podcast Network – Frank Murgia.  I love him.

Sorg: He was sitting on that couch a week ago.

James: He was sitting on this?  I can still smell him.

Sorg: Smells like Frank.

James: It does smell like Frank.

Sorg: Or my cat.  I’m not sure. 

James: They’re sponsoring it.  We also have a new company.  It’s kind of like a branch from Three Rivers Transportation.  It’s call VIP Transport.  It’s an Uber-app, like Uber.  It’s just like Uber, but it’s a Pittsburgh-based app. 

Sorg: It’s like Yinz Uber?

James: Sort of.  Yeah, I guess you would call it Yinzuber.  I like that.  Yinzuber.  But, they’re also sponsoring it.  It’s going to be pretty huge.  We’re trying to convince some of the 92.9 boys of the morning show to come in and be a team.  Be team Q92.9 or something.  But, we haven’t gotten a confirmation yet.  Like I said, those are some of the things that we do.  The 2 popular things that we do are the air band contest and the beer pong contest.  The air band contest is pretty classic.  I don’t know if you YouTube it, but there’s a Fista Productions, who are our main go-to guys whenever we film videos.  They do our commercials for us.  They plugged their last one – the last one we were having.  And, it gets exciting because you think people just come into an air band contest and they’re just going to strum their hands, and do the air drum thing and everything.  The one band actually won because – the last time we had it, the band won because they were doing Def Leppard and their drummer only used his one arm.  And, we gave him points for that.  We thought it was creative that he only used the one arm in it.  We only had – I think there was 5 or 6 guys.  Unfortunately, we do not have that video, because the team that was filming it took it hostage and wanted more money.

Sorg: Oh no.

James: It wasn’t you guys.  But, we ended up losing that footage.  But, it’s good times in Bar-Jutsu land. 

Sorg: I’m just pulling up the Fista Productions YouTube page.  Fista, F-I-S-T-A- productions.  Look for the one in Pittsburgh.  Looks like they’ve got some fun stuff over there – including some wrestling-related videos I notice.

James: Yes.  They are big.  One of the main guys, Steve McCall.

Sorg: Who I remembered.  I want to point out – I remember you, Steve, from IWC.

James: He was all nervous.  He was like, “Tell Sorg I love him.”  He also had a few beers in him, but he’s like, “I’m not drunk, but just tell him I love him.  I love his camera work.  He’s a great guy.  And, I always talked to him at IWC.  He’s great.”

Sorg: I appreciate that.

James: He’s like, “He’s not going to remember me.”  And, I was like, “I don’t know, dude.  He’s a good guy.  He’s a nice guy.  He may remember you.”  “He’s not going to remember me.”  I was like, “Alright Steve.  You’re drunk.”

Sorg: And, I’ve got to say.  I typically do not remember a lot of the trainees until they become a wrestler. 

James: And, like we were talking about before – he was great.  He was such a good worker.  But, when he was about to graduate from the training program, he took a step back and said, I’ve got a kid and a wife at home.  I don’t think I want to do this.  And, he stepped away from it before he even got started.

Sorg: And, those are the hard choices.  But, it’s good to do that instead of putting that stuff in trouble. 

James: Right.

Sorg: Alright,  Anything else you need to plug there before we get out of here?  We’ve got Garza on the line – as much as I love holding his.

James: No.  Just the September 19th at Gorman’s Pub, beer pong tournament championship.  Belts are on the line.  And, I think that is it.

Sorg: And, for anybody else, like Eamon down there in Texas,  Get the book – look out for the reprint, everything.  All that linked over there.  If you don’t mind, can I play the Sonni commercial in here?

James: You can play anything you want, buddy. 

Sorg: So, we’re going to stay on here with the Sonni commercial for the Bar-Jutsu book.  And, of course what happened this past week in Sorgatron Media.  It’s been a busy, busy time.  We’ll see if I can steal this belt before we come back here.  Right here on the Indy Mayhem Show.  We’ll be right back. 

Terrale Tempo Interview

Indy Mayhem Show 84

Guest: Terrale Tempo

Original Air Date: 08/26/2015

Listen or watch here

Terrale TempoEamon: I am very excited for this interview.  One of the good things – and I think we know it’s kind of preachy here on the Indy Mayhem Show, is when you go to indy shows definitely keep your eyes for new talents and people that catch your eye.  And, this is a guy that’s really caught my eye lately.  And, I’m very excited to have him on.  Making his way up in the Texas independent wrestling scene, and he’s definitely one to watch – ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the Indy Mayhem Show this week Terrale Tempo.  Terrale, how are you this evening?

Tempo: Oh, man.  I’m doing good.  Thank you for having me on the show again. 

Eamon: No problem.  Absolutely.  I guess the best way to start this off, and the way we kind of start it off with most of our guests to break the ice in a sense is, let us know what’s your first memory of watching professional wrestling?

Tempo: My first memory – this is going to sound a little corny, a little crazy.  I can’t remember much but I know I was in my car seat.  I know my parents were getting ready to leave so they called my older sister to come in and get me.  When she came to get me, my older sister and brother, they were wrestling fans anyway.  I couldn’t tell you what match she was watching, but she was watching wrestling.  And that’s, I believe, one of my first memories.  I can just – ever since then I can’t ever not remember wrestling not being in my life.  If you want to go to one where I clearly remember it, is Shawn Michaels when he beat Bret Hart and the boyhood dream.  That one sticks in my head. 

Eamon: Awesome.  From what I can tell at least, maybe from your siblings and stuff like that, wrestling was a thing that was kind of nurtured by your family in a sense?

Tempo: Yes.  I wouldn’t say my parents were too much into it, but definitely all my brothers and sisters are mostly into it.  But, my elder sister and my two older brothers were the ones that kind of got us into it.  I’ve been watching it, like I said, my whole life.  I can’t think of a time that wrestling wasn’t in it. 

Eamon: Awesome.  Very cool.  So, to transition from that, when did you sort of have the inkling of wanting to become a professional wrestler and start doing this?

Tempo: I always knew I wanted to do it, man.  But, you know, you always have people telling you, “You can’t do that.”  So, you start thinking.  But, I know when I was 14 I really started looking into schools and then I started training.  It would really be like football practice, and lift the weights, but then I would start doing it myself afterwards, always in the summer.  Definitely, I would say when I was 14 I kind of knew I could not live without trying this at least.  You know what I mean?

Eamon: Definitely.  And, if I have it right, was your first wrestling training with Rudy Boy Gonzalez down in San Antonio? 

Tempo: Yes.  It was June, 2013 was my first day.  That was my first time training with Rudy Boy.

Eamon: So, what was that like going into it, I guess, on your first day?  Did you have any sort of expectations going into training? 

Tempo: One funny thing was I know not to eat Chipotle before I go to training now.  That was the first thing I did wrong.  But it was just, it wasn’t too much expectation. I just wanted to make sure I got stuff down, and you’re just nervous about it.  I went there the week before and I got to see how the training was operated.  You’re just ready to get in.  Other than that, no man, there was no expectations.  It’s real fundamental.  We learned everything, the basics, everyday things.  I was getting there just thinking, “I’m going to learn the basics.  I’m going to learn the basics.”  That’s kind of how it went. 

Eamon: Specifically also, what’s it like training with Rudy Boy Gonzalez?  For those that don’t know – at least from the stuff I can tell, he has a very good reputation when it comes to producing stars in the State of Texas, guys that are getting out there and wrestling everywhere.  What’s it like specifically training with him?

Tempo: It’s just an everyday thing.  It’s Monday through Thursday.  We’re there from 7:00, well now it’s 6:30 to 9:00.  But, he’s there, and it’s just the basics – the basic psychology is a big thing.  I love it, man.  I was actually supposed to end up going – I was going to go to booker school actually.  But, I ended up meeting Mike Dale in Austin and he referred me to Rudy. And, Rudy was cheaper at the time, too.  I had to start soon.  It just – the opportunity made its way.  Everything Rudy does is so basic.  But, it’s good.  He teaches how not to do too much.  You tell a guy who’s been wrestling a while – you know, you see him in a match and they’re throwing a bad clothesline.  You’re like, “Hey man, you threw a bad clothesline out there.”  They’ll get all offended.  We don’t have a chance to get offended because we get to hear it every day.  We do matches 4 nights a week, and if something looks bad, you’re going to hear about.  If you do something stupid, you’re going to hear about it.  He’ll kick you out of the ring.  And that’s one thing you don’t want to happen is to be kicked out of the ring.  So, everything is just serious. 

Eamon: Definitely.  And, from the stuff I had seen of you most recently, a couple months ago I would say, was kind of going through that.  You were very clean with your work, and you can tell it’s very polished.  You think it’s a lot of that time you spent training that kind of helps with that aspect of just making sure everything looks good in a sense?

Tempo: I’m sorry.  Can you repeat that a little bit?

Eamon: No problem.  Was the training with Rudy?  From what I can tell your work is very polished.  It’s not just – obviously you have the look and all that stuff, but your work in the ring, it comes off as very professional.  Was that the training with Rudy that attributed to that?

Tempo: Yeah.  Like I said, we’re up there.  We’re there 4 nights a week.  I don’t think people understand how much we train.  And, sometimes we’ll be there Sundays if he calls us out on it.  That’s the way Rudy wants it, and that’s the way it has to be.  You know, Rudy’s big deal is he says he doesn’t train indy guys.  He’s not training you to be an indy guy.  And, what that means is you can definitely be on the indies.  But, he’s training you to be professional – to be on the WWE, the TNA, the ROH.  He’s training you for TV level, so you have to be ready. So, that’s his big thing.

Eamon: What would you say would be the greatest lesson you’ve learned in general – whether it’s in training or through your travels on the road and stuff like that, in wrestling?

Tempo: The greatest lesson?  I love the psychology – knowing you don’t have to do a lot of things, but just knowing how to take people through an emotional roller coaster.  I think that’s the best thing that I’ve learned.  I’ve dealt with all I see from Rudy, everything doesn’t have to be flashy and cool.  You don’t have to do all that stuff, you can do something so simple and people will enjoy it just as much as something over the top. 

Eamon: Like I mentioned, I’ve gotten to see your work a little bit around Texas, but also you recently got to debut for Inspire Pro Wrestling, which I was definitely very excited about.  And, it seemed like you made a very big impression in your Fatal Fourway match that you were in that also involved Scott Summers, who is kind of a veteran here in the State of Texas.  What was it like debuting for Inspire Pro Wrestling?

Tempo: I’ve been hearing about Inspire for – you know, I’ve been in San Antonio for about 2-3 years now.  Inspire’s one of the bigger promotions I’ve been hearing about.  I just hadn’t come across them yet, but then I was still like, “yeah man.”  So we got in contact and then we did it.  We ended up doing it, and Inspire was great.  The fans over there – that’s what I heard about.  I heard the fans are different.  San Antonio fans, Austin fans, they’re all different.  But, they love wrestling over there.  I’m not saying San Antonio doesn’t, but there’s just a different way how they express their love in Austin.  It’s just real cool.  I had a blast.  I didn’t get the job done, but I’ll definitely be back.  Actually, I’m back next month.  I’ll be there to go against Scott Summers 1-on-1, so I’ve got to make up for my loss. 

Eamon: I kind of mentioned it, I remember when I was on commentary, the idea that Austin is kind of notoriously a very hard crowd to impress your first time out.  You seemed to do it evidently.  They were chanting your name afterwards.  It was very clear that they were impressed by you.  Definitely a big thing.  I think that’s a testament to your work, and also the fact that kind of going with what you said about how you can have sort of a simple match as well and you can still get that impression off of people.

Tempo: Yeah.  To me, I’m all about the – I fell in love with wrestling just for the story of it.  To me, it doesn’t have to be a crazy match, but if I can see the story – you know, the smaller guy is trying to beat the bigger guy, or the more athletic guy’s in there with the better wrestler but he’s more athletic so he has to use his athleticism to beat the guy.  I’m just all about the story in it.  And, I think that’s what I can find with fans.  They just have to be invested, and not that there’s nothing wrong with doing it, but it doesn’t take a Shooting Star Press to – you know, that gets them invested in that move you did, but what’s going to get them invested in the whole match and everything you’re doing.  I think that’s where I try to connect with the fans.  I think at Inspire they picked it up well, and it worked out. 

Eamon: Going into some of the regular questions we have on the show, one that we’ve been asking is, what are you watching currently when it comes to wrestling, when it comes to either for recreation or for studying purposes.  Is there anything that you have your eye on specifically?

Tempo: Obviously I watch a lot of WWE.  Before I got down here I was watching a lot of TNA, but that kind of fell off just with the scheduling of it.  WWE, NXT, you know, I watch a lot of indies.  I watch a lot of Texas indies, because I’ll even tell people at Inspire I was back there and I met a lot of wrestlers the first time I meet them, “Yeah.  I kind of know who you are.  I’ve seen your work.”  And, they’re just like, “You’ve seen my work?”  You never know who you’re going to get in the ring against, especially here in Texas.  I think Texas indies is a lot, and old-school WWE matches, some of the newer things, just all around.  I’ll watch Shawn Michaels to get ideas, you know, Ric Flair.  I’ll say mainly WWE, but I watch Lucha Underground for a while.  I really like them.  I’ll watch some of ROH’s stuff, but mainly WWE. 

Eamon: And, going with that as well, going on in your career now, is there any specific goals you have as maybe considering people you want to face – either in Texas or outside?  Any kind of goals in that kind of realm?

Tempo: The list.  Oh, many, I have a list as long.  Just like I said, I sit up there and watch all this stuff.  But, I’m liking that I’m facing Scott Summers.  ACH is definitely probably at the top of my list when it comes to Texas guys I want to get in there with.  I think that would be a real storytelling match right there.  Keith Lee is another guy that I’d like to get in there with.  Alex Reins I’m actually facing on the 5th in San Antonio at Rudy’s show, so that’s going to be cool.  Ray Rowe, James Claxton, Mike Dell – I can go on and on. I don’t want to leave nobody out. 

Eamon: And, we kind of wrap things up, the question we ask everyone on the show – and feel free to take it in any direction you wish because a lot of our guests do.  Since we are a podcast, all about indy wrestling, we like to ask our guests what is, in your opinion, the best thing about independent wrestling and the worst thing about independent wrestling?

Tempo: Should I start off with the bad and then I can make it up with the good? 

Eamon: Sometimes that works out.

Tempo: I think I’ll do that.  I’ll babyface it and I’ll start with the bad and end off with the good.  The bad thing about it, for me – just as a wrestler, and also I think as a fan, is once again I think the psychology has been lost.  Psychology, me and Rudy Boy was actually talking about this last week.  The psychology isn’t just in the match but it’s how you promote your show, and who’s your champion, and what’s going on with your storylines.  All these things, and don’t let politics get involved.  But, I just think psychology is the main thing that’s lost on people.  You need to have a champion.  If you have a champion, have a champion that looks like a champion, that is a champion, that puts on great matches.  To me, I’m not a fan that it’s all about the look.  I’m just saying that you’ve got to know your talent, and I feel like a lot of times – I know a lot of times because I’m in the business, so I know friends get spots and people that’s in a circle get the same spots.  And, it kills the competition because if the same guys are getting the same opportunities and you’ve got hungry guys coming up, how do you get better?  The only way to ever bring up your competition, to bring up everybody else is to bring better competition around you.  You can go back to the Monday Night Wars.  That was a great time in wrestling, but would it have been as great if WCW wasn’t there, or if RAW wasn’t there?  No.  They had to compete against each other so these guys were bringing out the best of the best of the best in each other.  I just believe psychology, politics – guys need to better look the part. I’m not saying you have to be a big, crazy, muscled-up animal.  I’m not saying you have to be something like that.  But, I do believe you should just look like an athlete.  I don’t know how some people can get in the ring.  You’ve got to ask yourself, if you love this sport and I’m going to be in the business, in this sport – however you want to look at it, and I step in the ring and people look at me. How are they going to view the whole entire sport?  The whole entire business of what pro wrestling is?  So, when you get in there I do think you need to be – you know, don’t look like a fan.  Look like you’re a wrester.  Why would somebody pay to see themselves?  They wouldn’t.  That’s just a big thing too.  I think the look is definitely – and, like I said, once again just look like an athlete.  Look like you know what a gym looks like.  That’s one of my big things.  And, I guess to end with a positive note here, indy wrestling is – you know, I only grew up watching WWE, and WCW and things like that, so I always wanted to do that.  But, once I found out what indy wrestling was, and really dug my teeth into it, I fell in love with this business, with wrestling more than I ever thought I did.  I think the best thing about indies is you have the freedom.  One, I can be me.  There’s nobody telling me I’ve got to do this, and I need to wear this.  It’s all me going out there.  So, if I mess up or if I don’t, I have to learn how to correct myself – with help along the way, but it’s all you.  And, then just the emotion you can get with the fans.  Like little things that will cheer up people.  It doesn’t mean those guys don’t really get to talk to the fans like we do, they don’t get to interact with the fans like we do.  But, I think that’s the best thing about it.  It’s the best art form as well.  You can tell so many stories.  And, I can just go on about indy wrestling forever.  But, I think the good thing is you have the freedom and you can just – with the freedom with the fans, freedom with everybody.  You know what I mean?

Eamon:  Definitely.  Awesome.  Very cool.  So, thank you once again Terrale for coming on and sort of sharing your story, and talking with us.  If you’re on social media and people can find you, or if you have any upcoming events where people can check you out, feel free to plug away.

Tempo: You can go ahead and check me out at my Facebook.  It’s going to be Terrale Tempo.  My momma gave me that name, so I love that name. That’s cool.  Also Instagram.  I’m on there.  And, I’m actually getting a Twitter soon.  I’m working on getting the Twitter.  And, people are all like, “How are you working on getting a Twitter?  Just sign up.”  It’s not that easy.  Give me some slack alright.  People yelling at me.  Yeah, tell ‘em man. 

Sorg: Hey, social media’s hard, man.

Tempo: Yeah.  And, once again, was that everything?  Yeah, my Facebook and my Instagram.  And, I’m working on my Twitter as well.

Eamon: And, like you mentioned – that show in San Antonio, Texas for, I think TWA is the promotion, and will you be wrestling out at the Academy?

Tempo: Yeah.  It’s actually AIW.  But, yeah, Texas Academy of Wrestling.  And, it’s going to be at the Good Shepherd Church in San Antonio. 

Eamon: And, also September 13 for Inspire Pro Wrestling you’ll be wrestling Scott Summers as well.  Definitely many opportunities if you’re in Texas to check out Terrale Tempo.  And, I encourage you do, because it’s good to sort of seek out the up-and-coming talent, and from what I can tell, from what I have seen of him so far, I can guarantee you we’ll be impressed.  Once again, thank you very much Terrale for coming on the show. 

80s Mania Wrestling Interview

Indy Mayhem Show 83

Guest: 80s Mania Wrestling

Original Air Date: 08/19/2015

80s mania wrestlingWatch or listen 

Mike:  So, let’s get 80’s.  Let’s get neon.  Let’s throw back a little here, Rizz.  We have with us on the phone line, Chris Osk of 80’s Mania Wrestling, you can find at or the app on iPhone and Android stores.  How are you doing today Chris?

Chris: I’m doing great, guys.  How are you doing?

Mike: That is not a picture of him if you’re on the video.  Or, is this?  Is this an artist’s rendition of what you look like?

Chris: I’m not seeing it, but the chances are, if it’s a big muscular man, yes, that’s me.

Mike: Oh.  Okay.  The blonde one?  I believe the name is Brother Dude of that character?

Chris: Oh.  Dude Brohan.  

Rizz: Dude Brohan!

Chris: Yeah.  Yeah.  No.  That’s not me.  That’s a mishmash of a couple of my favorite 80’s culture icons.

Mike: That’s awesome.  So, let’s get started.  First of all, if you’re doing this, if you’re doing a game on 80’s wrestling and you guys have to be super – I think I know half the answers to this right off the bat, but we like to kind of get into, if you’re doing the thing that we have you on the show for, you have to be a wrestling fan.  For you, what was kind of your introduction to pro wrestling?  What was the thing that you said, “Oooh.  This is the thing for me.”

Chris: You know.  I mean, it goes back to childhood of course.  And, I can’t remember the specific thing that I saw first, but I do remember just being exposed to stuff on MTV.  I remember the WWF music video on MTV.  I remember the Rock n’ Wrestling cartoon show.  Strangely enough, it wasn’t wrestling per se that introduced me to wrestling, but mentions of wrestling on other 80’s programming, I guess you’d say.  And, then a simple connecting the dots kind of led me to, you know, those Saturday and Sunday morning, I guess it was around noon maybe, those shows.  You know, sandwiched by Saturday morning cartoons.  That was probably it.

Mike: That’s awesome.  So, you’re – and, I forget.  Remind me again, what is your position here with 80’s Mania Wrestling here?

Chris: Essentially Creator/Producer of the app.  You know, the writing and conceptual stuff essentially comes from me.  You know, I had a team of, oh boy, a bunch of people who really helped out along the way with the, you know, the development of the app, and the art, and some of the game design stuff.  But, essentially, just concepts and whatnot came from me.  

Mike: Awesome.  So, for those uninitiated and maybe not seeing some of the imagery going on if you’re on the audio version here of the Indy Mayhem Show, and I’ve got a video of your ad kind of playing here.  What is, what are we expecting?  What do you get when you download 80’s Mania Wrestling on your device?  

Chris: Yeah, so essentially what you’re getting is a booker sim – a business sim based in the pro wrestling worlds.  And, the presentation we were going for is retro.  It’s old NES.  So, you’re going to kind of have that pixelated feel, you know, that kind of chipped tuney soundtrack, and basic graphics.  But, at the heart of it, it’s a strategy game and it’s a collectible card game.  And, what you’re basically doing is collecting cards, and running your own wrestling promotion set in the 80’s.  And, then just totally jam-packed with all sorts of pop culture references and gags, and little “wink-wink, nod-nod” type stuff.  You’ll recognize, I assume if you’re a fan of wrestling and 80’s pop culture, you’ll recognize a lot of the stuff that’s in there.  We try to do it all in fun.  It’s a parody of that influential stuff from back then.  

Rizz: I mean, the first thing I see, right off the bat, is the Red Pirate Rogers, which is the homage to Princess Bride, which is probably one of my favorite movies.  I was like, “Oh, this is awesome, because it’s 80’s right now.”

Chris: Yeah!  Oh, right on.

Rizz: Even though he’s not really that good right now for me, but I’m just giving it time.  

Chris: And, that’s the stuff, with the characters.  That’s what we were going for was, not only grabbing the obvious, not only going for the Hulk Hogans and Macho Mans and stuff like that, but just kind of taking those movies, like you mentioned The Princess Bride.  That was a favorite of mine as well.  And we started thinking, “Okay.  What could we do with that?”  And, then there was the Dread Pirate Roberts, and we thought, “Well.  We can’t use that, but spin it a little bit and give him kind of a wrestling gimmick.  But, make it recognizable enough that fans of that movie, or fans again of that era, are able to recognize it and kind of get a good laugh out of it.”  

Mike: It’s been really fun.  So, I’m not a person that gets into manager sims.  I’ve tried some in the past, and just, I’m not an RPG guy.  I feel like there’s a little bit of a connection there.  But, again, artwork I’m loving.  The theme really kind of hooks me.  And I think as a long-time wrestling fan I think that’s what’s really going to make a lot of people hop on here.  So, versus sometimes when others do like, “Well, this is kind of like that wrestler you know,” and it just seems like a weird facsimile of it.  It fits with this.  Like we said, with the Red Pirate Roberts, which I determined automatically when he popped up, I’m like “Oh.  This is going to be my champion.”  Like you say, there’s a lot of nods to something like this.  So, getting into it, we talk about on here how hard it is to get into pro wrestling or whatever other aspects our guests are getting into.  First of all, is this your first app on the platform?

Chris: This is.  I’ve actually been in the gaming industry for a few years, but this is our first app.  And, this is the first project that was launched independently by myself, by my company.  Yep.

Mike: Awesome.  It’s really clean as far as that goes.  But, I guess there’s not really much for animations and such on there, so that has to make it a little bit easier, right?

Chris: Oh, for sure.  You know, and that was kind of one of the benefits to doing something that had that retro presentation.  And, actually going into it, also sort of realizing, “Okay.  We’re not making an action game.  We’re not setting out to make a game in which you’re having two guys wrestle in the ring.”  Knowingly going into this looking to make a collectible card game, a wrestling booker business sim, and laying on top of that the fact that it was purposely retro looking, yeah, it made sense.  And, it was a little bit easier to develop, especially for the first app.

Mike: And, Rizz, you’ve spent a little bit of time on this, right?

Rizz: I have.

Mike: What are your takeaways from this game over the bits you’ve had with it?

Rizz: It’s very – I like it.  But, it is very in depth to get your attention on there.  You can’t just go, “Okay, I’m going to put these wrestlers over here and have them fight.”  You have to make sure their attributes match, or you’ll get a bad rating, no money going through.  And, you can’t improve yourself unless you have that money going through there, which is really good when your guys are like, “There isn’t a chance.”  And, a tennis pro which you want to make sure is the bottom curtain jerker, but other than that I enjoy this tremendously, man.  This is an awesome game to play.  This isn’t just a time waster.

Chris: Thanks, man.  And just to add on to what you were mentioning, that was another intent, and I’m glad to see that you mentioned it.  And, that people I’ve talked to, that play the game and have liked the game have mentioned, the strategy aspect of it.  There are plenty of booking sims out there, where you essentially have an entire roster at your disposal, and it allows you to just kind of book Guy A versus Guy B, and quick simulate and get a result.  We tried to go a little bit further with it and set up a strategy aspect to it.  So, as you mentioned, there are only so many segment slots on a show, and your wrestler card, or any of your cards for that matter, you can only play once per show.  And, like you mentioned, certain wrestlers perform better in certain segment types so you’ve got to be aware of what wrestler you’re assigning to what type of show.  For example, one guy might be a better wrestler, where another guy might be better at mic spots, and another guy might be better at skits.  So, like you mentioned, you have to make the right choices in order to earn the most game cash, because you only have a limited amount of opportunities.  Only so many segments per show, and of course only so many shows per month, and so on, and so on.  So, I’m glad that the strategy aspect is noticed, and people like it.

Rizz: That’s the thing.  It’s challenging.  And, that’s one of the things that I like about the game is you get challenged when other games out there of the same wake are just, “Throw this card out there.  Do this.  Do that.  Do that.”  This one actually makes you think.  I think Sorg mentioned, the graphics are amazing in this, too.  Even though they’re a little minute, like just the pictures, the cards are pretty cool.  So, yeah, great job, man.  

Chris: Well, thanks.  And, a lot of credit, and I want to give a lot of credit to the artists.  There’s two guys in particular that did the wrestler art.  Werner Muck and Nathan Tremualt.  These guys are just really, really talented, and the best part about working with guys, artists like that, is they’re just very easy to direct, and they understand what we’re going for.  They know how to make it a little cartoony, and they make the bad guys look a little scary, and still kind of silly, and they just hit all the notes, and I just really appreciate all the work that the artists did on this game.  Because, I think they brought it all together.

Mike: So, what is your favorite character that you guys came up with in the process?

Chris: Oh wow.  That is a tough one.  I mean, I really have an extra place in my heart for all these guys.

Mike: I was just going to say, yeah.

Chris: I mean, the big iconic ones are fun.  Then there are ones that I didn’t know exactly what to expect, and then when the art came back, I was like, “Wow.  I love this guy now,” because the art is just, I love it.  For example, there’s a character called Laser.  And, he’s kind of Sting influenced I guess you’d say.  Now, I’m talking blonde hair, neon, Sting of course.  

Rizz: Yeah, 80’s Sting.  

Chris: Yeah, 80’s Sting.  Right.  The real Sting.  But, that’s just one guy that I thought, “Well, okay, this is a fun name, and he should be fun when he comes back.”  And, then when I first saw the art I said, “Yes.  I love this guy.  He’s going to be on a lot of the promo pieces and stuff, just because I’m a fan of how he came out.”  But, I like the lower card guys.  I like some of the curtain jerkers, too.  I like a guy like Tennis Pro, who has a fantastic audio clip, by the way.  And, that’s another thing I wanted to mention is a buddy of mine, Grant Pechoko, a really talented guy out west in the California area, he did the majority of the voices.  You know, when you tap on these digital cards and they flip over, you hear a little snippet of sound.  Most of the time, it’s a little piece of dialogue from the character.  And, my buddy Grant did just an amazing job.  So, I want to give him thanks, too.  

Mike: That was a surprise.  Because, again, my audio’s typically off because of the way and where I play.  But, I happened to have my headphones on when I kicked it on on the train, and I was like, “Oh.  Hello.”  And, again, it adds a whole other layer to it.  It’s a whole other 8-bit to it, a whole other fun to it.  It’s really good.  And, I also want to mention for those wondering, this is a free app on both platforms, available now.  But, you guys are doing a freemium model, and I know, Rizz, we just had a big conversation about Angry Birds 2 and whether the freemium is “too” freemium on this.  Can you talk a little bit about the strategy there?  If I get into this, what am I actually going to pay for when I get in it and when I kind of expand my deck?

Chris: It’s actually – so it’s free to play as you mentioned.  And, what you’re going to do when you start playing for free, is you’re going to get led through the tutorial.  And, that’s not only going to teach you the basics of playing, but it’s going to leave you with enough cards in your collection to be able to proceed at your own pace.  What is for sale in the game, the in-app purchases that we offer are pretty simple and basic, really.  We offer tokens.  So, a token can be traded in for $100,000.00 game cash.  And, what that equates to is, one token buys you one main event wrestler.  So, the interesting thing is though, if you play long enough, and if you play well enough – strategically speaking, you can earn enough game cash to essentially purchase everything but main eventers.  So, you’ll be gaining at a steady-enough rate to purchase all the other stuff besides the main event wrestlers, and then every game year – so for example, you start in January of 1980, when you get to January of 1981, you get a free token.  So, you legitimately can play through it and acquire tokens annually in the game, without ever purchasing.  Now, a lot of people start playing.  They love it, and they see a main event guy available in the shop that they must have, they must add to their collection, they must give the world championship title to, and they say, “You know, I don’t want to wait a game year.  Let me buy that token.”  So, we’re seeing a lot of that too.

Mike: That’s interesting.  And, the kind of randomized shop idea, I don’t think I’ve seen in a freemium game.  Not that I really dive into a lot of freemium games, it’s really just kind of Angry Birds and everything WWE puts out right now.  But, that’s an interesting concept with that.  Have you gotten really good reaction out of the freemium side of it?

Chris: We have as a matter of fact.  The overall response has really exceeded expectations, and I mean, just based on the feedback I get through social media, and then of course there’s the ratings and the review process at the App Store and at the Google Play Store.  

Mike: Yeah.  You guys are off the charts over on the Google Play Store right now, I’m seeing.

Chris: Yeah.  The ratings are really, really – we’re super pleased with the reaction.  People are genuinely excited about it.  And, I mean, you’re seeing stuff like, “This is the most fun thing.”  And, we’re saying, “Wow.  We didn’t expect that.”  It’s really, really cool and humbling to hear that kind of stuff.  And, this initial feedback – so we launched only about two weeks ago, so this initial feedback has really kind of motivated us to get our first big update happening, sooner rather than later.  

Mike: Awesome.  

Rizz: So, honestly, I just want to ask one question.  Are there any particular 80’s style characters that aren’t in the game that you would have liked in the game?

Chris: Yeah.  I mean, the short answer is yes.  So, if you were to pull up a long list of iconic 80’s wrestlers from the WWF and NWA and all that.  I mean, if you go down and check off, name-by-name, there’s lots of names of guys that we don’t have a direct influenced character featured.

Rizz: I mean, is there a name that you want in that game, that you would like in that game soon?

Chris: Let’s put it this way, I’ve got a list of concepts that we came up with after launch, or when it was a little too late to stick them into the launched version of the game and we thought, “Aww, this guy’s got to be in it.  We didn’t put this tag team in there, we need to have it.”  So yeah, I’ll just put it this way, there’s a good 15 or 20 concepts – now by “concepts” I mean wrestlers, managers, tag teams and feuds that just kind of missed the bus this time that will get in in the first update.  

Mike: Nice.  So, it’s going to be the best of the best, right?

Chris: Yeah, man.  You know, when you think about it, that’s what’s fantastic – pulling from this huge pool called 80’s pop culture.  I mean, there’s just so much stuff, from the wrestlers, to the movie characters, to cartoon characters, and TV shows, and music, and toys, and all sorts of stuff that we love.  Lots and lots of fun concepts to be influenced by.  

Mike: Awesome.  So, we’re going to again adapt some of our regular questions.  We usually have indy wrestlers on here.  So tell me, well first of all, this still applies.  You’ve got to be watching wrestling now in some vein.  So, what are you watching?  What are you keeping up with in pro wrestling today?  I know none of it is probably as great as the 80’s to you, but.

Chris: You know what’s funny?  Truthfully, I don’t watch it.  I really don’t.  But, truth be told, I was in Cleveland this weekend for the Wrestling Geekfest convention.  So, I saw plenty of indy wrestling.  

Mike: Did you get roped into Joe Dombrowski’s emporium of craziness?

Chris: There was so much crazy stuff going on.  I was kind of peeking my head into every little last thing I saw.  I saw a ton of stuff going on there from Joe Gagne’s video arcade.  He had video games set up.  To some of these indy promotions from the Ohio area that I wasn’t really familiar with, that were really fun.  And, I wanted to mention, there was one in particular that I thought was really cool, and that was Old Wrestling Extravaganza.  Do you guys know about them?

Mike: Yes.  We are very aware of them.  We had Pedro on here talking about them.  We’ve had a few people that are involved with that.  Jock Sampson in particular, Gregory Iron.  We actually had the Bearded Woman on here a few weeks ago as well from there.

Chris: Excellent!  So, I got to meet Marion Fontaine, who I guess he does a lot of the stuff behind the scenes for them.  Great guy.  And the match they put on, they put on a really fun 6-man tag match, and I was blown away.  I mean, it’s a small indy show, but these guys I could tell that it was so well thought out, I mean just the little intricate things they were doing during the match – it was a riot.  It was funny.  It was well thought out.  And, I just want to applaud those guys.  

Mike: I just actually found an image from there that’s video game style, which really kind of fits our theme for the day doesn’t it?  I noticed all the graphics for Geekfest were very WWF Superstars Arcade Game style whenever I find them.  Here’s one, if you guys are on video, of Fontaine, Gregory Iron, and Judge Hugo Black.  I’m not familiar with that one there.  Oh no, I know who that is.  That looks like Ricky Shane Paige now that I’m thinking about it.

Chris: That’s who it is.  Yeah.  That Judge character, they were prohibitionists.  So, they had some long, elaborate team name, the Anti-Something-Or-Other, but it’s a couple of politicians and a Southern Baptist Judge, I guess is what he’s playing.  They’re hilarious.

Mike: I absolutely love that.  They’re able to stretch and do a different character and have fun with that.  That’s amazing.  That’s great.  We talked about it before, but check out Olde Wrestling.  Google it.  You’ll find stuff there without getting much into it.  Anything else?  Or are you just good for all the old stuff?

Chris: That’s really it.  When it comes to sitting down watching stuff, I’m stuck with the 80’s.  And, you know what though, I was big in the mid 90’s.  I’m born and raised in New Jersey, so every Saturday night we got ECW straight out of Philly.  So, mid 90’s it was all about ECW.  And, that was about the last time I watched regularly.  

Mike: Awesome.  So, tell me, coming into this project – seeing it out there, what is the best and the worst thing about indy app game development.

Chris: That’s a great question.  The best thing, I’d say is anyone can do it.  No, really, it’s really accessible these days.  There’s apps everywhere for everything and almost everyone’s got one.  So, it’s sort of easy to get into.  But, we take pride in the fact that what we did is original and fun, and a lot of hard work went into it.  And, then the worst part about it is, I guess that since we’ve launched, now there’s just this big old responsibility to keep it going, and answer people’s questions, and keep on providing content.  So, now that it’s out there we are married to this puppy forever.  No, that’s not a bad thing.  

Rizz: It’s time to adult, right?

Chris: Yes.

Mike: So, go check it out, 80’s Mania Wrestling on Android and IOS platforms.  Is it iPad compatible, or are we stretching that for the time being?

Chris: No.  It actually sure is.  It’s available for the iPad as well.

Mike: I’ll have to load that on there as well then.  Go check all of that out, and anything else?  Can you give us a little preview of what’s coming up on that first update?  Can you give us any exclusives here on the show, maybe?

Chris: What I will say is this, is that we are definitely planning on, like I mentioned before, continuously adding new wrestlers, tag teams, feuds, that kind of good stuff.  A little bit further down the line, what we want to do is add a couple of new mechanics to the show process.  So, as you noticed now, when you play, you’ve got a few different show types.  You’ve got your weekly shows, and then you’ve got your pay-for-view.  The pay-for-views are, you know, your super cards – your super shows, and there’s a lot of title matches on them, and whatnot.  But, what we want to do in one of these upcoming updates is we’ve got one in November called Survival of the Fittest.  What we want to do is really kind of make that Survivor Series-ish – you know, break the mold of just being able to do singles matches and tag-team matches.  We’re looking to do 6-man and 8-man tag matches, and along with that maybe have a new type of card called the stable card?  So, instead of just unlocking tag-teams, maybe if you pair the right 3 guys or the right 4 guys together you’ll unlock their stable card, or something like that.  So, there’s a little preview of what might be coming up.

Mike: Cool.  Go check it out.  We’re having a lot of fun with it.

Rizz: Is there a podcast area going to be in there somehow?

Mike: In the 80’s?

Chris: A podcast?  Yeah.  What was the equivalent of a podcast in the 80’s?

Mike: College radio?

Rizz: Yeah.

Chris: Well, you know, actually, we were thinking about what kind of thing – so, we’ve got this thing called mic spots, and we’ve got these things called skits.  We thought, “Well, what are some fun ones we missed?”  And we thought, for skits we can do a kind of a PeeWee’s Playhouse kind of thing.  We can get PeeWee in there.  And for mic spots, we thought, “Who was a big Mr. Mic guy in the 80’s?” And, we thought we could get a Howard Stern type guy in there, so we’ll have like a radio show and a kid’s variety show in there.  So, yeah, maybe there’s room to get some kind of podcastesque kind of thing going on.

Rizz: Podcast-type in the 80’s.

Chris: I’m sure we can come up with something.

Mike: Or, a Tuesday Night Titans or something, too.

Chris: Yeah.  Something like that.

Mike: Awesome.  Go check it out.  Thanks, Chris, for joining us.  And, let us know what you think about the app as well.  Of course, hit them up on social media, and let us know if you’re checking the game out as well @MayhemShow on the twitter.  We’re going to look into some Vicious Outcast Wrestling with Dudders joining us here on the couch in the studio, but first, let us take a look back at last week in Sorgatron Media shows.  

Britt Baker Interview

Indy Mayhem Show 82
Guest: Britt Baker
Original Air Date: 08/12/2015
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Britt Baker

Sorg: With us, she just debuted at IWC’s Proving Grounds 4 (also available on, it’s Brittany Baker!  How you doing?

Britt: Hey, I’m great!

Sorg: You’re joining us here on the show, for the first time.  Thank you.

Britt: Thanks for having me.  

Sorg: So, this isn’t the first time we’ve had a newbie on the show.  So, I’m hoping you come back in exactly a year and we see how you’re doing.

Britt: Deal.  Let’s make the date.

Sorg: So, how are you doing?

Britt: I’m doing well.  Happy to be here.

Sorg: So, we like to kind of get into, kind of, what got you into pro wrestling?  Why are you doing it?  Because we think the wrestlers have to be the biggest of fans to get this far into it, right?  So, what was kind of your earliest introduction to wrestling that really kind of caught your attention?

Britt: Okay.  So, I grew up with boys.  The family that babysat me was five (5) boys.  I have a little brother, and thirteen (13) boy cousins.  So, I’ve always been kind of a tomboy, in and out of wrestling.  I think we’ve all gone through stages where we’ve watched it more and less.  And, then, when I did my undergrad at PennState I just really got into it again.  And, I was moving to Pittsburgh for dental school, which I’m in now.  And, I found out about all the independent wrestling scene, which I wasn’t really too familiar with.  And, I was like, “Okay.  Why not?”  Like, you ask, “Why?”  I ask, “Why not?”  If you’re a wrestling fan and you have an opportunity to train in indy wrestling, it’s like a dream come true.

Sorg: Which that is funny.  You mentioned dental school.  

Britt: Mm-hmm.  

Sorg: Apparently you go to the same dental school as my cousin.

Britt: Yeah.

Sorg: So, that was kind of weird.  I can’t remember how that came together.  I don’t know if I looked at your Facebook or something and saw the mention?

Britt: The old, mutual friend gimmick.

Sorg: That’s awesome.  So, how did you come across the school itself, then?

Britt: Google.  And, then I sort of asked around with some people that I knew who were more familiar with the indy wrestling scene.  And, then, IWC is the place to be apparently.

Sorg: We get to see the trainees on our side doing production for a while.  And, I know we kind of always do the poll of, “I wonder if that one’s going to make it?”

Britt: Okay.  So, let’s talk about this.  The very first show I’m at, I meet everybody.  And, Justin Plummer, who at the time was the Aftershock, backstage announcer guy, would always ask, “So, are you going to quit yet?”  Like, every single show.  And, I’m like, “Who is this guy?  I don’t even know him, and I’m going to clothesline the man in the vest asking me am I going to quit.”

Sorg: Little did you know.

Britt: I’m like, “No.  I’m not.”  And, then, months later – you know, owner of IWC.

Sorg: And, then there you are, like fifth show in that he does, and you’re on the poster – the main event.  Awesome.  So how was it?  Well, first, who did you train under?

Britt: Super Hentai is my head trainer.  Awesome guy.  Awesome role model – a general.  And, then Marshall “The Bull” is my other trainer.  He is a bull.  That’s for sure.  And, then we always have guest trainers stopping in and out.  It’s really cool.  DJ Z stops by and helps, which is phenomenal.  We could sit in the ring forever and learn from him.

Sorg: It was always interesting, because I know Bronco, and I can’t remember the other guy, the slaughterhouse guys.  They were always bigger guys, but you can tell they wrestled like Shiima.  Like, he instilled that in them, you know?

Britt: Right.  Shiima’s awesome.  And, then, we have all the seminars.  There’s just awesome opportunities to train and learn from your idols.  So, that’s cool.

Sorg: I know. I think Tommy Dreamer’s coming up this week, isn’t he?

Britt: Yep.  Tommy Dreamer.  We had Matt Hardy, Vince Russo, Rhyno.  There’s definitely opportunities galore.

Sorg: How is he?  I mean, I think it’s obvious with everybody else, you’re learning what to do in the ring and everything.  What does somebody like Vince Russo bring on a seminar kind of basis like that?

Britt: Oh, his was awesome.  It was all promo, which I wish I could redo that seminar because it was when I just first started training and it was all about developing your character and how to portray your character, and just stuff like that.  And, it was so early on that I was like, “Um, I just took a bump yesterday for the first time.”  So, the character stuff was still way foreign to us.  Every single seminar, you take something from it.  And, I always go down, write everything down.  So someday I’m going to have a notebook of quotes and little tidbits of information from all these seminars that I go to.

Sorg: That’s great.  So, like I said, you kind of built up.  So, you’ve been kind of on the road with IWC for a few years, and there’s always kind of crazy stuff going on there.  As a trainee, what’s kind of the crazy stuff that you see, before you even get into the ring?

Britt: Oh my.  Well.

Sorg: You’re there every show, and I know it’s from the Meadville ones to the Clearfield ones.  And, like I mentioned with the seminars.  But, there’s a lot of people coming in and out and everything.  There has to be something interesting going on there.  I know being around it myself, we get to see some interesting stuff on production.  So, I can’t imagine what you guys deal with.

Britt: So, I am one of the few females involved with IWC.  

Sorg: And, to be fair to Justin, usually the females do not last.  To be fair.  You’re the first I can remember since one of our friends of the show that’s been on.  And, that was several, several years ago.

Britt: Because I’m the first Britt Baker.  That’s why.  First off, my trainees, I love them.  My fellow trainees.  We have so many inside jokes.  I could sit here forever and talk about them, and they wouldn’t make any sense or be funny to anybody.  But, I don’t know.  What are you looking for exactly?

Sorg: I don’t know.  I’m just putting that out there.  But, anyways.  So, you had your first match two weeks ago at this point, right?

Britt: Right.

Sorg: We were talking about this a little bit before the show, but Dan Hooven’s been killing it on Instagram.  I say how many times?

Britt: Oh my gosh.  Dan Hooven.

Sorg: I can’t remember.  Between you and Bulk Nasty debuting, I can’t remember the last time new, fresh-out-of-training school wrestlers had so much back story and visual representation going into something like this.

Britt: He was pulling pictures from everywhere. And, I had a picture from Hawaii, and he was like, “Oh.  Britt Baker’s training with the Usos.”  It was hilarious.

Sorg: Okay.  He wanted me to ask about the Usos.  

Britt: No.  It’s like a picture with two Samoans, and he was like, “Britt Baker, see you’re getting your training from the Usos.” It was hilarious.  And the worst part is, his personal twitter account, he’ll always be posting, “Oh, Britt Baker only charged me $20.00 this time for a picture.”  He pushes me as the ultimate heel.  And, I’m like, “Stop tweeting that stuff.”

Sorg: And, I know you and Bulk Nasty, who debuted at the first show.  It was like pictures of him lifting weights.  I’m going to try to find it here.  He puts up so many damn pictures I can’t find the ones from like two weeks ago.  But, it’s like him lifting weights, and “Bulk Nasty’s at the gym preparing for his debut.”  

Britt: Yeah, like he quietly waits or something like that.

Sorg: Yeah, he quietly waits to get on the main stage or something like that.  And, here’s the one.  This is the one that kind of got me.  The “Welcome to Brittsburg.”

Britt: Oh yeah.

Sorg: I saw that and I was like, “You’re telling me she’s going to have t-shirts, man?”

Britt: Dan Hooven started that, the Brittsburgh thing.  He started that, and then the fans kind of ran.  I have yet to ever say anything about Brittsburgh – on social media, in the ring, anything.

Sorg: You haven’t had a chance to promo.

Britt: Right.

Sorg: Let’s go back for a moment.  Before wrestling, you’ve been in IWC.  You’ve been on screen for a while now.  I think you kind of replaced Justin Plummer.  Thankfully he didn’t toss over the vest to you.

Britt: I wouldn’t wear it.  I would have to kindly refuse.

Sorg: And, I always feel bad.  Because our coloring has been so bad.  Because we color balance for the front, and he’s got so many lights in the back.  And, then we go back to you talking to somebody.  And, I swear it looks like a porn set.  

Britt: It’s fine.  

Sorg: You’re in a dress.  And, the colors are purple and stuff.  And, we’re like, “What are we doing here?”

Britt: That kind of came out of nowhere, where he was like, “You’re going to.”  Him and Chuck came up to me and they were like, “You’re going to do interviews now.  Okay.  Good.  Bring a dress.”  I’m like, “Oh.  Okay.”  First time, “What do I say?  Like, what am I doing?”  It was very nerve racking.  But, it was fun.  So, here’s backstory.  I’ll be like, all those interviews are live at Court Time, and I’ll be interviewing.  And, of course, all the wrestlers are off to the side mooning me, and this and that.  Everything unprofessional to try to throw me off my game.  

Sorg: So, how did you deal with that?  You’ve done that since Reloaded, right?

Britt: Yeah.

Sorg: So, a few months there.  A few shows there at Court Time doing some of those interviews. And, then we rolled you into, you had some issues with Dylan Bostick and Rae Lynn, right?

Britt: Yeah.  The chick’s crazy.  That’s the issue.  That’s the issue there.  Just trying to get an interview, you know, the platinum world tour, apparently they don’t do interviews.  I guess. So, yeah.  No issue, except she’s crazy and runs her mouth.  And, wants to wrestle.  And, I would absolutely want to return the favor and wrestle.

Sorg: Awesome.  And, then of course, now we’re back to where we’re at now, with the instagrams and stuff.  So, you had your first match.  How do you think it went?  You had a mixed tag, again Andrew Palace, Dylan Bostick, Rae Lynn were part of it.  Rae Lynn’s definitely been around for a little bit, right?

Britt: Right.

Sorg: How did it feel to get in front of the people down there at White Oak?

Britt: The fans there were awesome.  They’re cool.  And, I’m with Andrew Palace.  Who else?  Who better than Andrew Palace?  Everybody loves Andrew.  He can do no wrong.  And, he’s just an awesome mentor, in general.  I could put Andrew Palace over forever.  I love that guy.  Love him.  Look at him.  He’s flawless.  He is just perfect.  But, no.  It was good.  And, everyone involved was very cooperative.  Aside from Rae Lynn and Dylan being heels and cheating and this and that it was all good.  I’m so excited – one-on-one Caged Fury.  Me and Rae Lynn.  More than excited.

Sorg: Not in the cage though, right?

Britt: Not in the cage.  As of now, not in the cage.  Unless she wants to go in the cage.  I’ll wring her blonde hair through it.

Sorg: There’s not enough cage matches with ladies, I think.

Britt: Yeah.  I want to do a cage match.  Maybe not right now, but down the road I would.

Sorg: One of the main events on RAW back in the day was what, Trish and Lita, or Victoria and Lita maybe.

Britt: Yeah.  How cool would that be, to be like a Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch cage match?  I just thought of that.  That’d be cool.

Sorg: I think you’re kind of coming up in an interesting time as we’re seeing.  Obviously the divas division has been a little more diva-ey than wreslter-ey in the past several years.  And, now we’re kind of having this resurgence in NXT.  Is that kind of helping motivate you a little bit to see, “Oh wait.  We have this to look forward to, maybe?”

Britt: Right.  And, everyone always says, “Oh, who’s your favorite wrestler?  Who’s your favorite match?”  And, it’s always been Trish and Lita, Trish and Lita – from so long ago.  And, now, I feel like ever since the Takeover with Charlotte and Natalya, ever since that it’s just taken off.  And, now, if you want to see good wrestling, just put on NXT – or I guess now RAW because a lot of those girls are on the RAW stage.   NXT is filled with talent.  

Sorg: It seemed like the indy wrestling, we’ve talked a lot about the representation of indy wrestling, of women’s wrestling.  It seems like it’d be non-existent in certain places – IWC for several years it felt like, too.  Some other promotions are doing some things.  It seems like we’ve had this flux of great wrestling happening.  Again, with people like Sara Del Rey – an IWC alumna herself, now training up there.  

Britt: Trainer.

Sorg: Yeah.  Exactly.  And, I think there was actually an interview with Charlotte, maybe?  No, Paige.  Paige, on the Stone Cold Podcast, actually calling her out by name.  

Britt: Yeah.  I watched that.

Sorg: It’s nice to know that the good wrestling doesn’t have to stop for the girls before they get signed, right?

Britt: Right.  And, it’s so nice.  You turn on RAW and know you’re going to see a match – and not just hair pulling and strutting around from the divas division.  Not that we’re hating on that, but we like to see wrestling, too.  Right?  Right.  

Sorg: So, I understand you’re involved also with Chair Shot Reality with Justin LaBar?

Britt: Yes.

Sorg: How’d that come about?  

Britt: So, Justin LaBar just, one time, we were talking wrestling.  And, I’m sure we were arguing about something, because that’s what we do.  And, he was just like, “You know, I would love to have you come on the show.”  And, I did.  And, it was fun.  And, it worked.  And, then, I just kept coming on the show.  Plus, it’s nice.  They’re a bunch of dudes – a bunch of nerdy dudes, too.  So, to have a female on the show always helps.  And, I kind of took a little break from it in the summer, just because they switched the filming hours to when I was in classes for dental school.  But, I will definitely be back on the show, arguing with Justin LaBar on the reg.  

Sorg: Good.  Good.  Tell me, has Goulish ever donned the Sting make-up while on the show with you?  Because that happened to us when we were filming at Latitude 40 the one summer with them.  He just busted it out when there were those rumors of Sting coming back.

Britt: No.  I have yet to see that.  But, I’m going to mention that to him that I feel I’m missing out.  I feel robbed of the Sting make-up experience.

Sorg: It was superb.  The man has had some practice with the Sting make-up.  Out there wooing and everything.  Thankfully, I don’t think that was a show that Mark Madden was on.

Britt: He’s hilarious, in general.

Sorg: Yeah.  He’s great.  He’s awesome.  So, we’ve got a couple of questions here we like to ask going out.  First of all, what are you watching these days?  Obviously NXT.  As we talked about, you’ve got to be into.  But, is there anything else catching your attention these days?

Britt: Wrestling wise?

Sorg: Yeah.

Britt: Yeah.  I watch NXT.  I actually don’t get to catch RAW as much as I would like to because we train Monday nights.  I’m always just googling random matches – indy, old school.  I mean, I think I watch a Lita match at least once a week, just because.  I love that.  I would say primarily now I watch NXT more than anything.  Because, that’s everyone’s goal.  That’s where you want to be, so why not?  It makes sense to watch people that have reached your goal.  

Sorg: Awesome.  So, so far, again – not so far into your career so much.  But, you can add Chair Shot Reality to this too, to this question.  What’s the best and the worst thing about indy wrestling?  Or Chair Shot Reality?  We can do that.  If you’ve got any dirt on LaBar, please go ahead and share.

Britt: Oh, I have so much dirt on LaBar.  I will bury him.

Sorg: Alright, alright.  We haven’t had him on for a while.

Britt: The worst thing?  Those ring crews can get really – it’s fun, and we have a great group of guys.  Literally, all guys and me.  And, we do have fun, and we joke around.  But, particularly with the cage, those get to be late nights.  Especially the cage in Clearfield for an 8-minute match (Justin Plummer).  I’m sorry.  I had to call him out.  We’ve been mad about that.  There’s some build-up tension.  And, one of the best things is you make life-long friends.  For me, personally, I’m in dental school – where we don’t talk about NXT, Monday Night RAW generally.  The same thing with my friends.  I’ve gotten my roommates in it a little bit more, which is cool.  Because they were totally oblivious to wrestling.  And, then they started watching Total Divas.  

Sorg: And, they know you’re a wrestler and everything?

Britt: Yeah.  My roommate was at the show actually – Proving Ground. And, now she’s coming to Caged Fury and bringing her mom.  It’s so funny.  Yeah.  She’s awesome.

Sorg: We’ll have to talk my cousin into coming down, too.

Britt: Yeah.  Tell her to get down here.  

Sorg: Yeah, that side of the family is not great wrestling fans.

Britt: Oh, you don’t have to tell me.  My family hates wrestling – all of them.  

Sorg: I can tell my grandma was just very judgmental anytime I was staying with her and be like, “What are you watching?”  

Britt: Actually, I think everybody that doesn’t watch wrestling, they’re judgmental.  They look at you like, “What?  What kool-aid are you drinking?  What is wrong with you?”  It’s true though.  If you meet someone, you’re like, “Oh, I’m a professional wrestler.”  And, they’re like, “What?  Why?”  And, then, “It’s fake.  Oh, this and that.”

Sorg: I always get, “Like on the TV?”  

Britt: Yeah.  Like WWE.  

Sorg: Yeah.

Britt: Yeah.  It’s funny.  “Like John Cena?”  That’s a common one.

Sorg: “So, what?  Are they like different companies? Are they like the minor leagues?”  And, you can’t really explain it in context.

Britt: It’s so hard to explain.  It’s just like, you just roll with it.

Sorg: Like, “Yeah.  Kind of like that.  Except no TV and about 300 people maybe.”  So, I understand – we were talking about it, so you can announce it – you’re actually going to be a few different places, and not just IWC at Caged Fury in a couple weeks.”

Britt: Yeah.  Traveling a little bit.  So, I’ll be at AIW in, I think it’s October 3rd for the Girls’ Night Out show, which I’m really excited about.  I’m kind of nervous.  Because, I’ve seen a lot of the AIW girls’ matches, and they’re very, very talented females.  So that’ll be awesome experience.  I do some in-ring announcing up at PWR in Erie.  That’s a good crew – a lot of IWC people.

Sorg: That’s right, John McChesney’s pretty big up there right now.

Britt: John McChesney is huge up there.  Erie is John McChesney.  I’m convinced.  He is the mayor or something.  

Sorg: I hear rumor he may be responsible for the turnout at Global Force.  So, I could believe that.

Britt: They love him.  He’s huge up there.  I’m a McChesney fan.  I really like John.  He’s always offering advice.  

Sorg: And, of course, Caged Fury coming up here on August 22, 2015 in Elizabeth, Pennsylvania, just south of town. Of course that’ll be on DVD and digital download if you’re not in the area.  But, I recommend if you are, come check it out.  It’s going to be a crazy, crazy show.  

Britt: It is going to be a crazy show.  You have to come.  Everybody.  

Sorg: So, who’s going to do backstage now?

Britt: I don’t know.  I have no idea.

Sorg: You be careful.  Because this is where you find out you’re doing double duty.  

Britt: I am not going anywhere near that mic.  Because, the last time I did a crazy broad slapped me.  So, I told Plummer I’m retiring from that position.  

Sorg: Okay, Plummer, he’s on top now.  But, remember, he was doing ring announcing and running back to me by the camera to do commentary with, I think, Sassy Steph or something at the time.  This is what happens in indy wrestling.  You never know.  You might have to do an interview right after your match.  I hope you win it.

Britt: I will.  For sure.  As long as there’s no cheating involved.  You never know with those two.  

Sorg: Brittany Baker.  Check her out.  You’re on twitters, where else?

Britt: Twitter, Instagram, facebook – not as active on social media as I should be.  And, I am going to be better Justin Plummer.  I promise.  A tweet a day.  He told me.  That’s my new goal – is to tweet a day.  

Sorg: @RealBrittBaker on the twitter.  Bug her.  Ask her questions.  Right?

Britt: Yeah.  Definitely.  Hit me with the questions.  Everyone always asks about training.  Like, this and that.  I love training.  Training’s my favorite part of the week.  Because, I have school all week, and then I go to training Monday night, train with those goons.  Palace comes and trains with us.  And, Darrin Deniro.  They’re both my good friends.  Bulk Nasty.  We always have a good time.  Which, I just listed those names.  There is a huge size disadvantage on my part with those guys.

Sorg: Actually, I didn’t mention, but speaking of training and physicality.  It is really intimidating looking at your twitter account because I’m familiar with yoga.  I’ve done the DDP Yoga, bro.  And, I cannot do that.

Britt: Have you tried it though?  

Sorg: No.

Britt: I actually just taught Palace how to do this.  I think I could teach you.  

Sorg: You think so?

Britt: Yeah.  By next show.

Sorg: I’m rusty.  By next show?

Britt: Yeah.

Sorg: Okay. Okay.  We’ll have to work on that then.  Man, I’m going to be fit.  I’m going to be doing all kinds of poses.

Britt: And, that can be your cover photo.  

Sorg: You don’t want that.  That’s going to be ugly if I try to do that, and try to put a pic like that up in shorts.  Nobody’s going to want that.  Everybody’s going to unfollow me.  But, go check her out.  Thanks a lot for joining us, and check her out at IWC. for more information.  And, please, follow that Instagram.  Who knows what Hooven’s going to put up next.  He has a lot of pictures at his disposal, and a lot of time on his hands, apparently.  So, we’re going to take a look at last week in Sorgatron Media and be right back.