Larger than life
Everyone remembers their childhood heroes. Those larger than life figures who you looked up too.
If you were playing road hockey, there was always that one player who you wanted to be. If you were playing superheroes — yeah I did that — with your friends there was one you always chose.
When you watched wrestling there was always that one figure who was larger than life.
Watching that person, you cringe with every hit he took and cheered for every turn of momentum.
Sometimes, when they lost, you cried. Remember, this would’ve been before you found out that wrestling was fake.
While I didn’t cry as a child when he lost, Bret Hart was still one of those figures.
He was a polarizing figure in the landscape of professional wrestling in the late 80s and all of the 90s. Hart still holds a place dear in the hearts of those who remember him prior to a stroke in 2002 that robbed him of most of his in-ring abilities.
A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of interacting with Hart at a Legends City Wrestling event in Torbay.
While he didn’t wrestle, he did come out to speak.
It was surreal, seeing this man, who I had looked up to for years as a child, standing 10 feet away from me.
I was flooded with childhood memories, from the first time I put in a WWE tape into my VCR, to sitting down with my grandfather to watch a match.
I mean, it’s something different when you SEE one of your heroes rather than just WATCHING him. There really is nothing like it. It was quite easy to keep myself going for a few days later just by riding the wave of nostalgia that came from the appearance.
One thing that struck me when meeting him was just how big of a man Bret Hart is. Watching on television, you don’t really think he looks that big, but when you’re standing next to him, it’s something else. It was something larger than life. I imagine it’s an experience that someone gets every time they meet a hero. You might say, ‘nah I don’t even like him that much anymore,’ but that all changes when the person you idolized as a child is right in front of you.
Everyone longs to go back.
With the calendar turning to summer and the weather starting to resemble the name, the stage appears set for the shores of Trinity and Conception bays to welcome surfers.
Strange I know, well maybe not as strange as you might think.
I’ve spoken with a couple of people who have seen surfers in the waters surrounding the communities of the area.
Unfortunately, I, personally, have not had the pleasure of speaking with anyone who likes to glide over the water on a board, but I hope too.
The whole surf culture fascinates me.
Moving from one prime surfing spot to another, leery of outsiders and finding that perfect spot and not letting the secret out to anyone who could spoil their watery paradise is all aspects that beg more questions.
What drives you to surf ? Is there a code you live by? Or, what compels you to face the highway and early mornings for a few hours of bliss?
There is always the notion of surfing in the frigid Atlantic Ocean waters.
A large part of surf culture is the aspect of localism. Surfers identify spots with exceptional surf as their own.
In claiming ownership, this spot becomes “property” of those who use it regularly.
Does that apply to Newfoundland surfers? If they are from outside of the community they surf in, can it be considered theirs?
For me, surfing appears to be a way to release yourself from the constraints society may have placed on you. A place to be free. It’s just you and nature and I want to learn more about it.
That’s why I’m using this space as an ad, if you will. If anyone out there knows of someone who surfs, or comes into town to surf, please contact the email below.