World Wrestling Entertainment’s 25th conjures memories of Cena, Mysterio and fun with friends


“1 … 2 … 3 … Ding! Ding! Ding! It’s over!”

These are the words that end a World Wrestling Entertainment match and get the crowd rumbling.

WWE, a professional wrestling company recently celebrated its 25th anniversary, has brought joy to many childhoods over the years.

As a little kid, it’s what all my friends and I would talk about.

We used to gather at my house and wrestle on the trampoline as if we were really in WWE.

My favorite wrestler was John Cena, and I loved to use his famous taunt: I’d wave my hand in front of my face and say, “You can’t see me.”

WWE reminds me of good times when I was younger.

That is, until that heartbreaking day arrived – the one that every wrestling kid has to go through.

It was the day I found out WWE wasn’t real.

I tried to deny it at first but soon enough there was too much proof.

I still enjoyed watching, but it didn’t feel the same. Some of the magic was gone and has never returned.

But my memories will never go away.

Like the time Dominick, a friend and fellow Detroit Mercy classmate, tried to imitate his favorite wrestler, Rey Mysterio.

Dom was trying to do Mysterio’s signature move, the 619. This is a move where you swing around the pole to hit your opponent and then flip on him for the pin.

Dom was mid-swing around the pole of my trampoline when it snapped.

Dom went flying, and hit his head on a huge rock.

We were all scared for him but he ended up fine. There was no long-term problem, other than the scar he still wears on his head today.

Another time, we had a royal rumble at my house.

A royal rumble is a match that is won by being the last person in the ring. When you get tossed out of the ring, you’re eliminated.

Everyone who came over had just one thing in mind: Winning.

We all wanted to go to school the next day and be able to brag about winning the royal rumble.

There were about eight of us, but there could be only one winner.

Pushing, kicking, throwing – we did whatever it took to get someone off that trampoline.

Finally, it came down my friend Marcel and me.

He hit me with “Stone Cold” Steve Austin’s signature move, the “Stone Cold Stunner.”

He knocked me down, but I wasn’t out.

I quickly got up and began to bounce.

Eventually, we were both in the air.

I timed it just right and pushed him while we were both airborne.

Next thing we knew, he was on the ground and I was on the trampoline, the winner with all the bragging rights.

The 25th anniversary reminded me how very close I used to be to WWE.

It’s different now, of course.

My friend and Titan basketball teammate Ed Carter III once went to WWE WrestleMania in Detroit.

“It’s an event I’ll never forget,” Carter said. “I was young so I was more excited then than I would be to go to one now. But it was a lot of fun.”

That sums it up nicely.

It was definitely a lot of fun.