Skip to main content

Pondering with Plumtree - Total Nonstop Audacity of Hope

Pondering with Plumtree is a column on the popular blog, TNAsylum, that is written by yours truly. The blog is focused towards being a fan site for TNA Wrestling fans where they can get news, rumors, opinions, and any and everything else, TNA Wrestling. Known as "The Haven for TNA Wrestling Fans", I'm hoping to bring some of my thoughts to an already impressive roster of columnist for as long as the site will have me. You can read the latest column here, or in the text below.

Okay, okay. Settle down. You can put away your political agendas and all beliefs around it. No worries. We're still talking pro wrestling here. 

Despite the semi-borrowed title and inspirational phrase for this column which was penned by the current President of the United States, the meaning and significance accurately describes the current times in TNA Wrestling. A time where most fans attempt to carry on as loyal fans of this company, yet still hold and carry along the fear of the unknown - new TV deal or no TV deal. 

I'll be completely honest with all of you, it's been a trying time for my fandom on pro wrestling as of late. There really hasn't been much offering (again, just my opinion) from the competitors and other companies, and when it comes to TNA, that simple fear of what is to come does indeed shadow my enjoyment of the product. In no way am I predicting the demise of TNA Wrestling and calling for the collectors to raid TNA headquarters right now, but again, just being honest, security is a powerful thing, and often the lack of it can cause concern. This is truth no matter how loyal your fandom or  how established your favorite product is. 

And what makes it all so complex is that I truly am enjoying the product more than ever. Actually, never like this in a really, really, really long time. Coming off the opportunity to be there live for some of the NYC tapings this past summer, including witnessing tremendous moments of seeing a rare North American appearance by the Great Muta, Jeff Hardy swanton-bombing the steel steps, Austin Aries vs. Bobby Lashley, the Hardys vs. The Wolves, Al Snow's return, Bobby Roode vs. Bobby Lashley, the ladder match in the tag team title series, and of course, seeing Dixie Carter go through a table, things were on the up. Excuse me, things are on the up. Summer was awesome for TNA.

New faces. A renewed energy. A profound focus on the in-ring product and a streamlined show. Impact has been easily the best product on television for the past few months. Feel free to agree to disagree. But I would love to hear your opinion on what product as whole has been better. 

But of course, as always through it all, that shadow of doubt remains. Fear summed up in one simplified question: Will TNA get a new television deal? 

And during this string of great times on IMPACT, with each week, the shadow grows larger and larger carrying along with it the negativity that drives the internet. "TNA is done", many say. While ignoring negative and trolling comments have become the norm, it does fuel that unknown. Fear of not only seeing your fandom for this wrestling company - your wrestling company - close it's doors for good. But fear of what it means for the fans of pro wrestling. For the wrestlers without another option to entertain you. And also for the tremendous hard working staffers, who are never broadcasted and whose efforts are very apparent at any live TNA event, who now will be out of a job. 

How about fear of a pro wrestling industry with one less company taking a stake of the WWE's foothold on pro wrestling? 

How about gaving to see those who have thrown prediction after prediction, along with all other types of typical internet wrestling prophecy at the wall regarding TNA's impending death, finally get their day. Despite the age old saying, all this group needs is for it to stick just once to be happy. 

The greatest fear of them all? Going back to a world where WWE is the only major option in North America. Relegated to internet downloads and streams of ROH, New Japan, and others just for an alternative. Just for something different. Just to get a healthy dose of what we all enjoy - pro wrestling.

Yet, opposing this fear is a belief that TNA will carry on. It's rather silly to admit, but TNA sometimes feels like a company of destiny which has made it twelve plus years already despite many hurdles, challenges, external industry forces, and many, many, non-believers to be where it is today. This also includes many, many, many, many, many, self-mistakes as well.

Over those twelve years, which included so many different regimes, turnovers, leaderships, television format styles, figure heads, big names, and every other trial and error scenario in the wrestling business you can possibly ponder, TNA has continued. 

And while many wrestling fans may be afraid to say it in fear of disagreeing with the masses or sounding rather foolish based upon the current reality, there is a certain history of overcoming that TNA has pulled off repeatedly which has created a certain level of comfort. There is a belief that TNA continues on. It just does. It has until now. Twelve years running. It's like a weird built up equity of hope in the company that cannot be explained. Almost to the existence of this is normal - doubters chime in. Adversity sets in. TNA moves on. 

Is it that crazy to continue to believe in a future for a company that has been told year after year that it wouldn't have one?

And of course, to complex the situation is the growing international success and numerous TV deals overseas. And of course, regardless of your opinion on the Bound For Glory event, hearing "TNA" chants and other reactions is evident of TNA's global exposure. 

So yes, through it all, for a fan of TNA Wrestling right now, it is super, super confusing. Things look bleak. Yet, things look promising. And somewhere in the middle is this unknown fear of which is really true. But, for the time being, and for this pro wrestling fan - yours truly, it's all about the audacity of hope, or the total non-stop audacity of hope, that TNA continues on, again. 

After all, what else does a fan have until fate decides TNA's future, and ultimately, the overall future of pro wrestling?

Random Rhetoric

Anyone else thinks BFG in Japan opens the door for TNA holding signature events anywhere in the world? UK? India? 

Speaking of Bound For Glory, wasn't it a show of two halves, with the first half being significantly better? 

And if the Wrestle-1 partnership continues, wouldn't a gimmick trophy/event of some sort ala The Ryder Cup in golf be interesting? 

Last thought on BFG, how awesome was MVP's punisher tights? 

Were you also surprised to see Magnus come out of no where to challenge Matt Hardy? 

And much like BFG, hasn't his year with the company been one of significantly different halves?

Does anyone know exactly how much the Menagerie needs to rebuild the carnival? 

They just don't seem like a motivated bunch to do so, do they?

Isn't EC3 just pure gold? 

How refreshing is the focus on tag team wrestling right now?

And finally...

Obviously it was another great main event, but wasn't it a nice story of Bobby Roode finally defeating Austin Aries to gain his number one contender-ship? 

Recently Read Posts

Dear Son, Letting In and Letting Go

--25 Weeks Old (Before Birth)--
Dear Son, 
The word is now spreading to more and more people about your existence, or eventual arrival - however, you prefer to look at it - and it feels like a fire that is now out of our control. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but as mentioned in prior letters to you, your mother and I are pretty methodical in how we divulge news about our private lives. 
Truthfully, your mother is definitely more willing to share news than I am, and you'll eventually see that one day. Maybe I'll change, who knows? But the truth is, because of the nature in how I grew up, in the neighborhood that I did, and really, the independence that I had to attain early on, I've always been late to share things with others. That's just who I am. It's probably why I have had this very blog since I was sixteen - to let those thoughts out somewhere.

March Sadness

This post has been coming for awhile, and it now seems like the best time to do so...
So, here goes...
Division I Basketball is getting more and more difficult for me to watch and support. 
Just like I once laid out regarding my ethical feelings towards the NFL (and really, football, overall), thus is the same credence and feelings I have developing for Division I Basketball - mainly the NCAA's approach to it. Now of course, my feelings aren't something new as many share my thoughts and opinions on this - the NCAA is corrupt and college basketball is a sham. But for me, it goes even deeper - certain programs, coaches, and communities enable this exploitation of young men. And yes, many shy away from that word, but that's exactly what college basketball has become, an exploitation of services.

Sunday Sundown Rundown - 3/18/18

3 Up 
1. UMBC - I'm really struggling to watch these tournament games. The games have been entertaining, but morally, I can't stomach the exploitation of these young men (more on that some other time). Regardless, kudos to the young men of UMBC who made history this week. I'm thrilled to see such a program make headlines, and of course, for a coach from the DII and DIII ranks who did it the right way. 
2. UMBC Social Media Team - Yo, whoever is running the UMBC Twitter following their defeat of Virginia deserves a raise. There was some serious shade being thrown, and to be honest, everyone who was in their way in some ways, deserves it. 
3. 2018 Paralympics - Oddly, I watched a tremendous amount of these games and was totally in awe of the athletes. Shockingly, the hockey games were super entertaining to me. So much love and credit to those who participated, and even more importantly, continue to persevere despite disabilities. 
3 Down
1. Florida Bridge Collapse - So sad. I…

Dome Pondering Movie Review: Roman J. Israel Esq. (2017)

What is it about?
An unusual but driven and idealistic lawyer finds himself in a series of events that forces him to his extremes, and ultimately, to make a decision on what he stands for. 
Who is in it? 
Denzel Washington - Roman J. Israel Esq. 
Colin Farrell - George Pierce 
Carmen Ejogo - Maya Alston