Many folks in and out of our business as well, have
different ideas when it comes to Championship Titles. Some view them
as just a prop. They have the idea that since the industry is
predetermined, or "worked" using the so called "smart" lingo, that
the belts are just a thing. I'm climbing back on my proverbial
soapbox today, to tell you that the assemblage of leather and metal,
are far from being just a thing.
photo above depicts four prominent titles, that have special places
in my heart. They have all been worn at one time or another, by a
member of The PRINGLE DYNASTY. From left to right are The
World Class Texas Heavyweight Championship, The World Class Tag Team
Championship, The Southern Heavyweight Title, and The Florida
Heavyweight Championship. These are the original belts, not
replicas. I am proud to say that both World Class belts are a part
of my personal collection. How these four belts came together for
this photo, is a story unto itself.
You see, during the last years of the 1980s, when
Texas wrestling underwent a tremendous change, World Class closed
it's doors, and USWA replaced it for awhile. I was working in the
office at The Sportatorium at the time, and the two belts ended up
in my closet. They stayed there for almost 15-years, until I met
Dave Millican several months ago. Dave and the legendary Reggie
Parks, are the Kings when it comes to original title belts in our
sport. Dave learned that I had the two belts in my possession, and
offered to clean them up for me. To make a long story short, I sent
them to him. The photo above, shows what they looked like when I put
them into his hands. The photo below shows what his talent and
respect for our business did for my collection. Needless to say,
these pictures are worth a thousand words.
They look like they did the first time they were ever worn at The
Sportatorium. I can tell you that they are not hiding in my home
office anymore. I'm finally out of the closet! That you can see from
the photo below.
When you pour your blood, sweat and tears into a
business such as ours, the trophies that we gather mean so much to
us. They represent the thousands of miles spent on the road away
from your family. They stand for the many opponents that you have
faced in those countless arenas around the world. The belts, simple
to some, become a part of you. They are history. If those belts
around my shoulders could only talk. Can you imagine what they would
have to say?
The stories about The Von Erich Family, The Freebirds,
Gino Hernandez, Chris Adams, Rick Rude... I could go on and on. If
we are on the same page, you understand, and no further words are
necessary. If you don't get it, there's not enough words for me to
write for you.
I would like to thank Dave Millican and Reggie Parks
for restoring my belts. Dave has such a tremendous respect for our
business and it's history, that he refused to take any money from me
for his work. He said, that his pay was just being allowed to work
on such artifacts.
If you have any interest at all in championship belts
in our industry, please take the time to visit Dave's website at:
Take care, my friends.