Because "Pretty" Peter Avalon pushes his luck against Brandon Parker and takes too much for granted in this outdoor Magnum Pro Wrestling show last June, Parker ultimately dusts the long-haired punk's ass and gains his first win at MPW.

Looking at this match, I realize what makes catch wrestling work for me.  It isn't blood.  It isn't high-flying acrobatics.  It isn't drama.

It isn't even the tights and the muscle, although all these things and more are fine with me.  It's not anything that can be pared down to a single element.

It's more holistic, combining any or all of these elements towards a definite felt effect.  It's the way the guys sell the pain.  Basically, that's what it is, for me.

Giving and taking, the wrestlers have to make me feel it.  Whatever they do that makes me feel the thump of a body slam, I'm going to like.

I want to sense--in my imagination, if nowhere else--the weight of body against body, the heat of the lights (or sun) on the shoulders, the saltiness of the sweat on skin.

If the connect of that left hook causes the flesh on the side of my jaw to seize up, I know I'm going to like these guys.

When an arm twist makes me grimace, ever so slightly, and the long grunting hold makes me feel a little pressure against the fly of my jeans, I am watching a fight I enjoy.


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