by Than Acuff
George “the Animal” Steele eating the pads, Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka launching off of the top turnbuckle, the Iron Sheik, KoKo B Ware, the Haymaker, the Suplex (of which there are over 50 variations including the crossface chickenwing suplex, the electric chair suplex and the Northern Lights suplex, to name a few), Rowdy Roddy Piper, Randy Macho Man Savage, Hulk Hogan (I guess), the Atomic Knee Drop, the Sleeper Hold and Andre the Giant being… giant. All cherished memories from my youth somewhat forced upon me by a friend of mine who had a huge Sony Trinitron TV and, AND, cable.
As a result, he and his adoration for the WWF occasionally trapped me while waiting to watch all of the “other shows” on cable.
Well, Wednesday night I was served up a massive flashback as CB Extreme faced Pitas OGs in their own version of Smackdown!
It was a beautiful evening at Pitsker field, made only more beautiful by the outfits, with the exception of Ben Johnson’s, worn by players from both teams and the card girls announcing each inning. The only things missing were folding chairs, stepladders and tables.
Nevertheless, among the WWF mayhem, there was still a game to be played and the OGs drew first blood in the top of the first inning, racking up six runs on a series of base hits. Three base hits in a row loaded the bases for Mallory Zimmerman and she doubled to score two runs. Mark Bortolin added a RBI single, Drew Stichter and Heather Cooper did the same and the OGs were poised for a 10-run inning. But CB Extreme clamped down as Drew Holbrook pulled in a self-inflicted circus catch in right center and Callie Aspinwall made the hot corner that much more hot, pulling in a grounder and tapping third base to stop the OGs at six.
CB Extreme managed just one run in response as Andy Richmond singled and scored on a base hit from Sean Slattery but their defense applied a sleeper hold on the OGs hitters in the second inning to keep things in check.
That lasted about one inning though as CB Extreme’s struggles at the plate continued—could have been the outfits—and the OGs tacked on two more runs in the third inning. Reyna Cook scored one with a double and Pip Bailey singled and scored off another hit from Bortolin for an 8-1 OGs lead.
Then things got weird…er, at least for me. Both benches had dueling music going and when Flo Rida’s song Goin Down For Real was blasting from one bench and mixing in with Thin Lizzy’s Boys are Back in Town from the other bench, things got out of hand, personally. While a Sumo Wrestler was batting, Bailey was running around in women’s clothing and Katie Valach was dressed like a man (complete with “packaging”), my psyche crumbled as I was taken back to a friend’s 1987 Hampton Coliseum meltdown during the set break when he was convinced his parents were in the auditorium and he had to do whatever it took to leave the premises.
It was “going down for real.”
But once I came back from my audiovisualamalgam-induced temporary vision quest, CB Extreme had pushed one more run home on a sac hit RBI by Jess Forbes, the OGs tallied three more runs on hits from Ben Hayes, Drew Grigsby and Valach, who “used the dick to get the hit.”
Just like a well-choreographed WWF match though, CB Extreme made a temporary comeback, bringing the crowd to a fever. The only difference, the fans at a Crested Butte softball game are far more subdued than the typical WWF crowd who spent a considerable amount of their monthly income to treat the family to a night of over-priced beers, sodas, nitrates, action figures and t-shirts made in China only to spill or lose most of it while hurling profanities and shoving their middle fingers in the air and chanting USA, USA, USA.
“Daddy? I kinda like the Iron Sheik. His hat is cool.”
“You can’t root for him because he is from Iran and they’re communists and they are attacking America and Christianity and… Goddammit son you spilled my beer! Amber? Go get us a couple more and make sure you get some sodas for the kids. USA! USA! USA!”
My bad, am I coming across as a judgmental liberal? No wonder Trump is president. While I was busy doing whatever I was doing in my teens, twenties and thirties, millions were attending and tuning in to Smackdown! plotting the overthrow of the US government, whether they knew it or not, which finally came to fruition. I only have myself to blame, and the media, of which I am a part. Goddammit, I spilled my macchiato and the line at Camp 4 is out the door. Stupid tourists. Stupid Vail. Stupid Trump. Stupid stupid.
As I was saying…
CB Extreme was mounting a comeback as a series of base hits, including a mind-numbing powerbunt by Bart Consedine, loaded the bases. Evan Strong proved patient at the plate earning a two RBI walk and hits from Richmond and Forbes scored two more runs to pull CB Extreme within five of the OGs with two innings to go.
But that would be it from CB Extreme as the OGs added three more runs to seal the 14-6 win and rather than head home, or to dinner, the two teams mutually agreed to play a double-header that night enjoying the freedoms bestowed upon us by the people who built this great nation. USA! USA! USA!