Reader Column: To Mark, Or Not To Mark?

Reader Jason Alexander submitted the following:

To Mark, Or Not To Mark

There as always been a term in wrestling that I never understood, “Mark.” So, I looked up the definition in wrestling terms and it’s somebody who thinks that everything that happens in wrestling is real. From wrestlers really getting beat up and hurt, to the Undertaker really being in a vegetative state. Now, don’t get me wrong that wrestlers actually do get hurt sometimes but come on, do you really think Hulk Hogan’s big leg could actually pin somebody? The other term is “Smart Mark,” which is somebody who knows that wrestling matches are pre determined and they still watch it and read the internet to get backstage news. Why do you think wrestlers go to wrestling schools? So they know how to fall, perform in front of a crowd, and learn how to protect themselves and their fellow wrestlers. Whatever happened to being just called “Fans?”

Now, I consider myself a wrestling fan. I watch it, enjoy it, and know that it’s pre determined and staged. I went to a wrestling show and met up with a guy afterwards. I asked him what he thought of it. Mind you , he was wearing a wrestling shirt. He says, it was great and he loved the main event. He didn’t want to admit it but he said he “Marked Out” during the match. I told him, that’s why we’re all there, to have fun. We’re not “Marks,” we’re fans. It sounded like he was embarrassed to admit he was cheering and had a good time. At another show, during a ladder match a wrestler was choked slammed from the top of a ladder. He didn’t move for like two minutes. Plus, the referee was trying to get him out of the ring. As the referee tried pulling him out, he was completely limp. Finally, the wrestler started moving and was able to get out of the ring. The whole time he was out, I thought he was seriously hurt. Now, does that make me a “Mark?” Since I thought he was really hurt? No, that makes me a fan because I actually cared about this wrestler and thought he just broke his back.

Now, there are some fans who are into wrestling more than me. You know the ones I’m talking about and I don’t mean any disrespect here. The fans who are adults and wear the replica belts around their waists and have two other replica belts over their shoulders. A guy who took the belt into a restaurant with him and had it over his shoulder as he ate. To the infamous “It’s real to me, dammit” guy on you tube. These people are just fans who enjoy wrestling more than your average fan. People who like comic books and computers are called “Geeks or Nerds” so I guess “Marks” is the term to insult wrestling fans. Well, if I’m consider a “Mark” for loving pro wrestling and being a fan, then I’m damn proud to call myself a “Mark.”