The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

December 21, 2013

I triple dog dare you to get behind this tournament

By Wayne Bennett
For The Register-Herald

BECKLEY — Wrestling season is in full swing now and there are some great tournaments scheduled during the holiday season. I love watching good competitive wrestling, but I think these holiday tournaments should make a little more effort to connect with the Christmas season.

Next year, after I win the Mega Millions lottery, I am going to sponsor a wrestling tournament with the theme, “A Christmas Story.” I am sure you are familiar with this epic movie and at least have watched portions of the movie during its 24-hour Christmas marathon.

All the participating teams must wear snowsuits (in school colors) with at least 13 layers of waterproof material. Coaches will be wearing bunny pajamas (just like Ralphie’s), also in school colors. If a coach’s rabbit ears fall off any time during competition, one team point will be deducted.

If a wrestler gets pinned quickly there will be sink cabinets for him to hide under until his next match.

Flavored bars of soap will be distributed to any coach, wrestler or fan who shows displeasure with a referee’s call.

There will be a replica of Warren G. Harding Elementary School in the gym for any fan or participant to test their fingernail-scraping ability across the chalkboard. There will also be a replica of Higbee’s Department Store where everyone will get the opportunity to meet Santa and slide down the now-famous slicky slide.

There will be no security officers at this tournament, but all the referees will be presented with a Red Ryder 200-shot BB gun to ensure their safety in getting to their cars. I hope they don’t put their eye out.  

A clinky pressure cooker will be used in the concession stand for nostalgic reasons and a flag pole will be erected just outside the main entrance so patrons can test to see if your tongue really does stick to cold metal. While outside, ticket holders may participate in a snowball throwing contest or a new game called “bully beatdown.”

As an added attraction, Ralphie (actor Peter Billingsley) will be there to sign autographs and talk about his new career as a producer.

Instead of trophies, members of the winning team will receive an all-expense-paid trip to the Christmas Story House and Museum and treated to a duck or goose dinner (with or without the head) at the now famous Bac Chinese Restaurant.

Second-place finishers will get an authentic leg lamp which not only can be used to light up a room, but can provide a good prop for single leg takedowns.

Coaches need to watch for my lottery win in the newspaper and contact me immediately to get their teams in this tournament. I triple dog dare you.

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This week a squeeze of the water bottle goes to Chuck McCormick, a big wrestling fan and an avid reader of this column. Merry Christmas!