Monday, November 24, 2008

Bret The Hitman Hart

So anyone who knows me.....well, knows that I am a big wrestling fan. And Bret hart was always my favorite wrestler. Anyone who knows me even more....well, also knows that I was fortunate enough to become friends with and travel with the Hitman.
Meeting and knowing the best wrestler in the world will always be one of my most treasured memories. I mean not many people can say that they got to hang out with their childhood hero.
Of course as time wore on and life took it's course for both of us, we fell out of contact. But I always followed his career, both the ups and downs of it.
Recently Bret released his autobiography Hitman: My real life in the world of cartoon wrestling. I remember him talking about this book on a few occasions and was happy to finally see it released. After snagging up my copy I got to know Bret more through his book. And I was worried that it might knock my childhood hero off his pedestal, and I guess in some respects it did. But in doing so it made Bret more human. A human who overcame and achieved loads of greatness that most men only dream about.
Bret did a book signing at the Virgin Megastore in Orlando last week, and I was right in line, not only to get my book signed, (and one for a good friend) but to visit an old friend as well.
My ex wife joked that he wouldn't remember me, but I knew better.

On the way into the store I noticed a few other fans dressed as Bret and Shawn Michaels respectively. And for whatever reason they decided to act out the sharpshooter right in the parking lot. It was a bit funny how long it took them to actually get into the move. "Bret" was afraid his pants would tear.
After waiting in line for an hour and a half I got to see Bret. It was funny to watch him do a double take and then smile. "You haven't changed a bit Mike" he said. The moment was brief and he gave me some contact info so we wouldn't lose touch again. And it was good to see him, if only for that moment.

Had I changed? I'm sure we both had, especially after 12 years. So I came home and compared the images, and while the reflection may have changed a little bit. The friendship was still there.


Frank Zieglar said...

I remember you being a Hart fan - but I didn't know you traveled with him.

A few years ago I drew at Shawn Michaels 40th birthday party here in SA. I drew him, his wife, and little boy. They were all very nice. And wouldn't you know - I didn't have my camera with me...

Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed the pictures, I'm glad you posted them, brought back great memories of you and your brother wrestling all the time. You really haven't changed a bit. love you

Tim Gardner said...

Hmm, you never told me this story... I suppose I need to be educated about the wrestling world...

Anonymous said...

Funny, I never saw/read this post, I guess. My Daughter's karate sensei's constantly call her "Rae 'The Hitman' Hart".