At this juncture, I feel that it’s pertanent for someone to take the ball and write a brief “thank you” letter to Mr. John Zandig. Being that I’m a man who has no social life, I guess this task is relegated to me. That’s not to say that I feel in any way burdened by this project; on the contrary, it’s my privelege to put into words (as best I can) the feelings of a great many hardcore fans [and wrestlers] after the events that transpired recently at Cage of Death 8, which culminated in the retirement of “the Ultraviolent Icon.”
I, for one, am saddened to see the in-ring career of one of the most inhumanly tough motherfuckers in this business come to an end. I will miss watching his matches and “marking out” as yet another dangerously risky bump is pulled off, sure that one of these moves is inevitably going to end in serious injury or paralysis. I will miss cringing at the ungodly pain that the man endures for the sake of his company and his craft. But mostly, I will miss that spinning clothesline. That move is butter.
On the other hand, part of me is glad to see Zandig hanging up the boots. The man has certainly risked and given enough of himself that he deserves a little downtime. Whether a fan or not, no one can argue that Zandig has gone well beyond the call of duty when it came to withstanding pain and enduring torture to help promote his company and carve CZW a niche in the world of indy wrestling. I get the distinct impression that if he continued at this pace, the odds would eventually catch up to him and he would be severely injured. One can only tempt fate so many times before fate takes a shotgun to your scrotum and says, “how do you like that, bitch?!?” As it stands now, though, he can leave the in-ring action and lead a normal life, still as head of the company, but without the constant danger of shortening his life. He leaves behind an incomparable legacy of violence, innovation, and a dedication to his company so fierce that he has risked life and limb time and again.
So, to summarize—Thanks, John. I know I hit you with a weedwhacker a few months back, but hey…we all make mistakes, right? Sorry about that… Thank you for your years of service to our country, in the capacity of promoting ultraviolence so that bored, unbalanced kids like myself have something to do with their lives. Thank you for creating and being the driving force behind a hardcore wrestling promotion in the wake of ECW so that those of us whose goal it was to be deathmatch workers didn’t have to move to Indiana. Ugh. Thank you for all of the crazy innovations in violence and insanity that you’ve helped bring to the scene to make hardcore wrestling so damn great. And, perhaps most of all, thank you for taking me out to eat at Chili’s that one time.