In regard to this twisted romance fan-fiction in which you've been indulging:
Ladies, you need to pull yourselves together. When you watch a play and see an intense stage kiss, do you assume that the two are really in love? No! Neither should you assume that a pair of wrestlers who spend a few minutes once a week touching each other through spandex are lovers in reality. They are professionals—coworkers—and entertaining you is their job. Implying or fantasizing about anything less than that is disrespectful to the men (and women) who have spent their whole lives trying to be able to stand in the ring in front of thousands. I had no idea that this was the kind of fan fiction that you were writing for yourselves, but, really... it has got to stop. You're tainting the reputation of the female wrestling fan.
Despite how interesting it was to read Salmon's and Clerc's article in Steel Chair to the Head, I cannot say that I found much to be proud of in these pages. As a female wrestling fan, I feel as if these two ladies were trying to explain my attraction, but if that was the case, they have failed. I don't participate in fan-based blogs and forums (unless you count this class...), but if I did, it would not be to talk about the "fine, hot sexy men" that I saw on TV. I would probably be excited about seeing Ryback return, and want to talk about his rise and fall and why he would make a great champion—reasons that have (almost) nothing to do with his physique. On the other hand, I'm not looking for an emotional (romantic) outlet in wrestling, either. I don't think I would be posting pictures of wrestlers embracing or of them showing "true emotions." Nor do I feel the need to flesh out the WWE's storylines with post-match fan fiction.
I guess I haven't really asked myself why I enjoy wrestling. For me, wrestling is social; I watch with my classmates and other friends, mostly while talking and eating and laughing and such. In that sense, wrestling is a fun excuse to hang out and make jokes. I also like wrestling because it so aptly portrays the struggle of life (from a middle/lower class perspective). It seems like Stone Cold Steve Austin really hates his boss as much as I hate mine (kayfabe; I don't really hate my boss), but the fact that Stone Cold can go and punch his boss in the face while retaining his job somehow makes it easier for me to refrain from punching my boss in the face (which would likely result in the loss of my job). I also really like the way storylines overlap and are multi-tiered (which we've discussed before). I do not enjoy reading fan-written wrestling porn that is somehow deemed acceptable because there are no pictures, or because it's far-fetched (as in the case of alternative universe stories). Thanks to the internet, people get to make stupid choices anonymously, without retribution, like fantasizing about famous people without a filter for everyone to see. I am not a fan.