I wanted to end this year on a happy note. I've been saving this story for a little while and today is just the right day to share it.
Have you ever had a moment in your life, where you see somebody and say to yourself "HEY! I knew him/her before they made it big!" Or "I was into that BEFORE it was cool." well this is one of those stories.
So once upon a time, MySpace was cool.
Back in 2009, I blogged on there much like I do here, only more frequently and with less serious stories. But one thing I talked about the most was wrestling, specifically the Indies.
The Indies are the backbone of wrestling. Just about every wrestler you've ever thought was cool was an Indy Boy at one point or another. It's where our stars are born and reborn, and what most people don't realize is that the top three companies were once themselves "Indy". (WWE was once Capitol, an Indy with just barely 12 on the roster.)
While MySpace was booming, I started making plenty of friends, but little did I realize that the company I was keeping were all about to become well known names. Looking at my list right now, I see names in Ring of Honor, names in TNA and WWE, a filmmaker, names that now crop up in magazines and newspaper articles.
John Bullard is now one of those names.
A humble man, I'm not sure how he'll feel about this blog, as he's not one to boast or brag, but I just had to tell this tale.
It was wintertime in early 2009 when I got a friend request from John. We talked about wrestling and who were the best commentators, and always he was supportive of my desire to be a cartoonist.
In just three years, I watched from afar as John held simultaneous jobs as a wrestler and musician. I had always heard that hard work and determination would get you places, and his life was that phrase in motion. John has never had it easy in life, but it's never stopped him from reaching the next step. He's been through alot in his short life, having survived the kinds of disasters only CNN could talk about. But he's always kept on. He built himself up, and along the way would lend a hand to those in need of support.
He saw that the good people of Kentucky also love wrestling, but didn't have many options. There was a hunger for change. People wanted more than the every day "Smokey Mountain" feel. They wanted variety. Everything from high flying action, to technical, to hardcore brawls.
So John decided to bring it to them.
He was diligent with his work, and very slowly, began to shape a new project called "Pro Wrestling Freedom". He was determined to provide fans with the product that would make them the happiest, and soon, he was enlisting all kinds of names from around the area. Everyone from Hy Zaya and Lennox Norris to Mad Man Pondo and B.J. Whitmer.
Just as things were starting to solidify, I got a phone call. He needed a website.
I spent many a sleepless night, teaching myself anything I could to make the site worthy of this promising new company. I'm very blessed to say that I built the Pro Wrestling Freedom website this year, and it's one of the most rewarding works I've ever had. It's been an honor and a joy to build that page from scratch.
The site went live in September, and just one month later, PWF held their first show.
It always warms my heart to see a new wrestling promotion with a strong vision start up, but this is the first time I can say I watched a friend start one from scratch.
Steadily these last few months, I've been watching PWF grow from a brand new venture to a household name, complete with a loyal fan-base and an energetic roster, just bursting with life. They're heading to WOBZ TV 9 in Kentucky this upcoming year, and there will be an internet stream for those outside the area.
I am also very happy to report to you that just before the stroke of midnight, PWF debuted it's very first iPPV on WWNLive. The whole roster put their very best effort into it, and if you like what you see, the DVD has extra matches and other stuff added.
I can't tell you how amazed I am that I was lucky enough to see this from the very beginning.
I'm very proud of you, John.