Minutes to Bell Time

I Was There: Final Battle 2019

Chapter 11

I Was There: Final Battle 2019

Event: Final Battle 2019

Location: University of Maryland Baltimore College (UMBC) Event Center

Date: December 13, 2019

Headline: Rush defends Ring of Honor World Championship Against PCO

Miles from Home:  29 Miles

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PCO Monster Mania

I remember watching Pierre as part of the Quebecers at WrestleMania 10. I never expected to see him turn into Frankenstein, wrestle as a singles competitor, and capture the world title 25 years later at the age of 51.

From 2005 through 2008, Pierre Carl Ouelette (PCO) had a solid high paying job doing French commentary for TNA. Pierre made the decision to leave his easy commentary job in order to pursue his lifelong goal of becoming World Champion. As PCO told Chris Van Vliet, “When I was 14, I wanted to become a World Champion, and I didn’t want to commentate on the World Champions. So I said to him I feel like I’m not in my place. I’m having fun, its a great job, but I’m too young for this.”

From there, he travelled all over Europe trying to get re-hired by WWE, but nothing he did led to a job. Without achieving his goals, PCO retired in 2011. He came out of retirment resurfacing at Black Label Pro in January 2018. That exposure led to a famous match with Walter at Joey Janela’s Spring Break during WrestleMania 34 weekend. His career started picking up steam again, and PCO got signed by ROH on December 1, 2018. A year and 12 days later, PCO became the World Champion at ROH Final Battle 2019. How can you not be inspired?

I am Inspired

Like all entertainment, Pro Wrestling offers an escape from the struggles in our everyday lives. But Final Battle offered me little relief from the realization that my own life was rapidly changing. A month prior, on November 12th, I notified friends, family, and coworkers that I planned to leave the comfort of my steady corporate job. My last day in consulting would be December 20th. For 13 years, I worked harder than anyone to progress my career. Despite rapidly ascending the corporate ladder, a series of experiences in 2019 led me to become bored and frustrated. I no longer felt satisfied by the outcomes associated with my hard work.

I chose to take a risk and change my life. With just five working days left, I had to wonder if giving up everything I worked for in my professional career was going to be a smart decision. Would I blow our savings? Was I crazy? Could watching pro wrestling and writing about it be enough to sustain me? Would people care? I believed in me, and I was willing to take the risk. I didn’t know if the risk would pay off.

As all those thoughts raced around in my mind, I watched PCO achieve his dream. From the age of 14, he wanted to become Wold Champion, and he had to sacrifice the comforts of an easy job to focus on that dream. He never gave up and one week before his 52nd birthday, his dream came true. If he could achieve his dreams at this stage of his athletic career, then I could too.

Am I crazy? If you call believing in yourself so much that you’re willing to give up a well paying job to achieve your dreams, then yes I am. But no matter how crazy you think I might be, I’m still not doing cannonballs off the top rope onto the ring apron at the age of 52. I’ll use the pool and leave those moves to the French Frankenstein.

Thank You

Thanks for reading this week’s installment of “I Was There.” I hope you’re inspired to chase a dream. The verdict on whether I’ll succeed is still out, but I’m going to love every moment of this crazy attempt at life. Follow me on Instagram to stay current on all I’m doing.  If you have any questions or want to talk wrestling, feel free to reach out. – Ryan ([email protected]).

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