My Favourite Things of 2012

I know 2012 isn’t over quite yet, but here is a list of My Favourite Things of 2012.

 

New Product – Chobani Greek Yogurt (you can check out my healthy recipes at my other blog here). I was spoilt as they sent me a case of yogurts to test out; now I’m addicted.

Podcasts –

  • The Wind Up
  • I Love Green Guide Letters
  • Little Dum Dum club
  • The Art of Wrestling with Colt Cabana

 

Tattoo Expo –  Rites of Passage Festival 2012 where I got a hand poked/tebori tattoo from Horishin.

Fitness Bloggers –  

Jill Hanner
Kasey Arena – Powercakes
Cassey Ho – Pop Pilates

 

YouTubers –

Eat Your Kim Chi
Jenna Marbles
Daily Grace
You Deserve A Drink
My Drunk Kitchen

Movie – I think I only saw two or three new movies at the cinema this year and only because I reviewed them for Youthcentral. Going by that, Ted would have to be my favourite.

 

Song – Pink “Try”. The song has such deep and meaningful lyrics and visually beautiful video clip to accompany it.

 

Television Show – I Will Survive: Priscilla. I literally have never laughed as much at a reality television show. Tom was such a cutie.

 

Tattoo Artist – Benjamin Laukis

 

Magazine – Once again, Inked Australia.

 

New tattoo – I got quite a few tattoos this year, but my Bakeneko/Nekomata tattoo has inspired me to really look into Japanese mythology. I’m not sure when I’ll be getting tattooed again, so I’ll have to live vicariously through everyone else like I already do.

Wrestling Road Diaries Review

Wrestling Road Diaries stars three talented wrestlers in the American independent wrestling scene – Colt Cabana, Bryan Danielson and Sal Rinauro. We’re invited on their two-week journey to get a personal look into their life as professional wrestlers. The viewers are exposed to the behind the scenes antics at the Ring of Honor television tapings, and follow the guys as they travel from state to state wrestling in various other wrestling promotions.

Coming into watching this DVD, I really had no idea what to expect. I did not want to distort my perception by expecting certain things. I watched this DVD as a fan of wrestling, and upon completion I am now completely engulfed in this whole other world. I have a new perspective on the wrestling industry as a whole. It has expanded by knowledge and given me more to think about in terms of what I personally enjoy about watching wrestling.

Wrestling Road Diaries is like something we have never seen before. We have the opportunity to get to know the guys on a more personal level. They share with us their thoughts on wrestling, the travelling, the different companies, and friends. We can see the close bond that Sal, Colt and Bryan share.

Past wrestling books and documentaries have focused on the gritty side of the wrestling industry, playing out the old Hollywood story of dying before your time. Where is the joy in hearing about all this heartbreak, the lies? For years people idolised wrestlers to find out their deep, dark secrets long after their time in the ring is up.

These are men to look up to. Respectful, dedicated, successful, humble and they’re not trouble makers. Have you ever heard of them being arrested to drug or alcohol offences? And you won’t because they made the decision not to partake in that culture.

This DVD has been a long time in the making. Filmed back in 2009, it begins with Colt returning to the Indy scene after being future endeavoured by the WWE, and Bryan just being offered a WWE contract. Even when he is faced with what could be some serious medical issues, Bryan still seems to keep it together; taking it one day at a time, and hoping for a positive outcome. They love what they’re doing and it’s their passion which keeps them going.

Whether they’re wrestling in front of less than 50 people or a crowd of thousands, they truly do put their bodies on the line. They got into this business to entertain. They want the crowd to leave satisfied, yet begging for more.

Wrestling Road Diaries evokes questions such as: What do you define as success in wrestling? What do you define as success in life?

We’re conditioned as children that life must follow a certain formula: finish high school, get a college degree, have a 9-5 job, buy a home and have a family. Many give up on their childhood dreams because they’re afraid of failure, or perhaps too materialistic to suffer for their passion; but not these guys. They’re businessmen, salesmen, athletes, teachers, entertainers, their own advertising team, self-made men. There’s so much more to being a successful wrestler than meets the eye.

Many think the wrestling lifestyle is glamorous. No one day is ever the same for these wrestlers. It is a gruelling life to live, and at times unorganised and spontaneous, but that seems to be part of the attraction for them. There is the excitement of doing something new, and not being stuck behind a desk five days a week. There is freedom. It’s an almost gypsy-like lifestyle that they get to lead. Travelling around, seeing their homeland and countries abroad. Interacting with people and being able to bring entertainment and joy to their lives.

I commend them and other wrestlers for having the determination and drive to make something of themselves. It is a long and difficult road, but with wrestling pumping through your veins, it all seems worth it in the end. They’re not bitter about past incidents, but more so positive about what’s to come next. The wrestling business needs more guys like this, guys who are and have always been so infatuated with wrestling. Those who have put their blood sweat and tears into their training and development into becoming the amazing athletes that they are today.

This documentary shows off the close connection that these guys share; their passion, their quirky habits, and their ever playful nature. They have the utmost respect for each other and the business. You very rarely hear them say a bad word. They have such a positive mental attitude that everyone could benefit from adopting in their own lives. Who else can say that they have been able to travel the country every week, with their closest friends?

It is heart-warming to see how they help each other out, offering them a place to stay with no expectations of being paid. There’s no shame in sharing a hotel room with three other grown men, it’s just a normal part of their lives.  These guys are not simply characters acting out a story before us. They’re real people with hopes, dreams, fears, responsibilities just like the rest of us, but they go about their lives like no other I have ever seen.

I didn’t want the DVD to end. I was captivated from start to finish. I could listen for hours about their stories from the road. That is what has drawn to me Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling pod cast; being given the opportunity to hear both the positive and negative about the wrestling world, and how wrestlers took various paths in order to become the wrestlers and the people that they are today. These guys have lived. They have life experiences others would never dream of having.

Wrestling Road Diaries really drives home the point of supporting local independent wrestlers and wrestling promotions, whether it is by attending a show, helping to promote it, or with buying merchandise.   It is us fans who are giving these guys the opportunity to live their dreams; something everyone should have the chance to do.

Wrestling Road Diaries will be one of those wrestling documentaries that are talked about for years to come. It joins the ranks of The Backyard and Beyond the Mat for DVDs every die-hard wrestling fan needs to see sometime in their lives. However, this documentary isn’t just for wrestling fans. It’s a lifestyle documentary following people in an unconventional profession, living their dream. What’s more inspiring than that?

How do you measure success? By the amount of money you make? By achieving the goals you set for yourself? Or is it measured by your happiness?

Buy your copy of Wrestling Road Diaries here.

Filming of Wrestling Road Diaries 2 will commence in two weeks. Follow Colt Cabana, Cliff Compton and Luke Gallows for more details.

My Favourite Things of 2011

My Favourite Things of 2011

Favourite Convention of 2011
Wrestle Reunion 5

The Melbourne Tattoo Expo was special because I got tattooed by Craigy Lee, but it pales in comparison with my three days at Wrestle Reunion 5.

I bought a VIP pass and got to meet wrestlers I had grown up watching. It was such a surreal moment, and one I will never forget. The ROH and PWG shows that same weekend are the best wrestling events I have ever been to.

Favourite Blogger of 2011
Kandee Johnson

Makeup artist, master of arts and crafts and a mother of four, is there anything she can’t do?
Kandee’s blog and YouTube videos provide a constant source of information and inspiration.

Favourite Clothing Line of 2011
Sober Is Sexy

A percentage of profits from this clothing line goes towards charity. Sober Is Sexy is a collection of shirts, singlets and pants promoting a sober lifestyle of not partaking in drugs or alcohol. Sober is the sexy look, not being a hot mess.

Collection two is now on sale.

Favourite Podcast of 2011
The Art of Wrestling with Colt Cabana

Each week Colt speaks with a fellow professional wrestler about memorable moments in their careers. The podcast introduces the listeners to wrestlers they may have never heard of. It is not just a wrestling podcast, but life stories, lessons and memories from people living their dream, travelling around the world entertaining others.

Help support the podcast by going to Colt Merch.

Favourite Television Show of 2011
American Horror Story.

At first I was sceptical, as the storyline seemed similar to the Amityville Horror. But as they slowly revealed more about the history of the house and introduced more characters, I was hooked. I don’t see how this show can go further than one season.

This has been the first show in years where I truly have had no idea where the story would go next. We need more horror/thriller television shows like this.

Favourite Movie of 2011
Bridesmaids

Favourite Singer/Band of 2011
Gotye

His work with The Basics is how I first discovered several years ago, and I’ve since fallen in love with his sound.

I like to think of Wally De Backer as an Australian Phil Collins. Both being drummers, he tells tales of heartache through his experimentation with sound bites and instruments.

Favourite Live Music Event of 2011
Stevie Nicks

Hearing Stevie perform ‘Edge of Seventeen’ live was so hauntingly beautiful.

Check out my review here.

Favourite Tattoo Artist of 2011
Grant Cobb

Favourite Painter of 2011
Shawn Barber

Favourite Magazine of 2011
Inked Australia/New Zealand magazine

With the amount that I write and talk about this magazine you would be mistaken in thinking i was getting paid to do so. But it is this magazine that reinvigorated my love of writing, introduced to me countless number of artists, the best in their mediums.

I’ve been inspired by the people in the magazine, out there making a living doing what they love, all unique in their own special ways. There is no Australian tattoo magazine on the market that offers that mix of lifestyle, art, music etc.

Check out my reviews of Inked Australia here.

Follow Inked Australia/New Zealand on Twitter.

Like Inked Australia/New Zealand on Facebook.

Subscribe to Inked Australia/New Zealand here.

Celebrating The One Year Anniversary of The Art of Wrestling with Colt Cabana podcast

 It has been one year since Colt Cabana first brought us The Art of Wrestling Podcast: “A professional wrestling podcast, a life podcast, a personal journal, an entry way into the minds, the souls, the hearts and the lives of people involved in the world of professional wrestling.”

But who is Colt Cabana? I’ll let him tell you: “I am a Chicago native, a podcaster, an entertainer, small businessman, an entrepreneur and a professional wrestler.”

The Art of Wrestling podcast shines the spotlight on the independent wrestling scene; Colt Cabana finds a way to draw the most entertaining stories out of his guests. His close bonds with these guys, and girls, who he has met, and maintained friendships with over the years, gives the listeners insight into the inner workings of the wrestling industry. Their passion for wrestling, despite the setbacks at times, is what makes this podcast so enthralling. The honest and comedic stories told with such charisma displays the characteristics of natural born performers.

This podcast has filled a void in the social marketing/media of wrestling. Instead of fans podcasting or blogging about their thoughts on the weeks wrestling action, with the occasional appearance of an actual wrestler, the Art of Wrestling is hosted by a veteran of the wrestling industry. Give Colt Cabana a microphone and one of his many friends (and fellow wrestlers) and what you get is an hour of no holds barred, honest and insightful content.

Colt’s personality shines through each week. He’s a real guy with many of the same problems that we face, but he always manages to do it with a smile on his face. He has such positivity and drive to succeed, traits we could all use a little more of.

Success isn’t defined by how much money you’re making, but by the life experiences and stories that you share with others. He and these wrestlers are out living life, travelling, wrestling, entertaining people, making the most of the time they have. These are not shoot interviews, but simply a place for wrestlers to reminisce about the amazing (and not so amazing) experiences they’ve had as wrestlers. Their stories are all different, they’ve come from different backgrounds, idolised different wrestlers growing up, but all share that common bond of living their dream; that of being a professional wrestler.

Listen to Episode 7 to find out why Adam Pearce affectionately refers to Colt as Shit Pockets. In Episode 20, Austin Aries and Colt share an interesting, but mostly awkward, story about the older gentleman they met whilst sitting in a hot tub together. Or there is Episode 15 where you find out why Matt Cross almost ended up in prison as a teenager. Roderick Strong tells of father’s mid-life crisis in Episode 17 and how it ended up with them wrestling in Jim Neidhart’s backyard. X-Pac, Jimmy Jacobs, Zack Gowen, and Cassandro’s stories, in Episodes 12, 14, 24, and 32 respectively, are hard-hitting and revealing of where they could have easily given up, but have overcome obstacles and turned their lives around.

It is these stories and experiences that are what makes the Art of Wrestling unique and a compelling listen week after week. A new found respect for independent wrestlers is what I have drawn from these podcasts. After having little to no access to wrestling for the past five years, my passion is now reignited. Stripping back all the huge production elements of the big name companies, I remember what I loved about wrestling; the competition, the athleticism, the good vs. bad storylines, and being so immersed in a match that I forget about the world around me. These guys truly put their hearts and bodies on the line whenever they step into the ring.

I think many forget or are ignorant to the wrestling industry outside of TNA and WWE. The independent wrestling scene needs continued support from us, the fans. These wrestlers are constantly out on the road, going from city to city, trying to make a living for themselves and their families, by offering us their talent in the form of entertainment. Go out to a local show, buy some merchandise and show your love that exists purely to entertain the fans.

This podcast is a form of entertainment, and in other aspects of our life we would pay for said entertainment. It’s not about forcing people into buying something, but thinking about it in a larger sense; the more people who support Colt (by sharing the podcast with friends, or buying merchandise), the longer he can continue to do the podcast. So, please go to http://www.coltmerch.com and buy a poster, a button, a T-shirt or a DVD, and help support Colt continue living his dream, and entertaining us all along the way.

Favourite Songs of the Week

“Land of 1000 Dances” by the 1986 WWF Roster
Episode 2
(6:48 – 11:14)  

“Be a Man, Hogan” by Macho Man Randy Savage
Episode 17
(9:55 – 12:47)

“I’m Your Man” by Rowdy Roddy Piper
Episode 20
(11:25 – 14:18)

“Grandma Versus The Crusher” by Reverend Billy C. Wirtz
 Episode 35
(8:23 – 12:23)

Favourite Quote

“Spandex, baby oil and boner control; the three most important things to being a pro-wrestler” – Colt Cabana (Episode 10 – opening monologue)

Websites
www.welovecolt.com
www.coltmerch.com
www.youtube.com/user/ColtCabanaWrestling
www.twitter.com/ColtCabana