Still shaking off my regular fog of sleep, I checked my email. One of my best friends, Bruno, sent me an article about one of my favorite TV shows getting a reboot. OK… but why did he couple the link with the phrase “So that everything today isn’t bad news…”?
Off to Facebook I went. I realize Bruno was a few hours ahead of me in becoming (and staying) speechless. It is hard to fathom that life makes room for the possibility that death arrives in the immediate wake of such a momentous occasion.
We will only truly understand if the reason for our puzzlement is the out-of-the-blue nature of his Warrior’s passing, the passing in itself, or both, in a few days. Maybe weeks.
However, I feel there is a greater, more substantial, piece of the puzzle that needs to be acknowledged. And it comes directly from Warrior’s (now extremely foreshadowing) speech on Monday: he may have passed, but the memories live on in all of us.
His merits in this aspect cannot be argued, even if the same could be said about the imperfections he evidenced during the years, in the locker room and in avenues like public speaking, where his views had a penchant for heated controversy.
A few days ago, before his induction, the long-standing image of Warrior may have been that of a man standing by his own convictions against a powerful establishment that even produced a carefully crafted DVD about his “self destruction”, and was made bitter and angry for that.
Although, as an obvious outsider, I can only speak in generalities, the (exactly) general feeling may have been toward the mellowing out of his stance and outlook in the last few years.
The often crazy, bitter, controversial image of wrestling’s most prominent power-and-paint man was replaced with that of a man seemingly at peace and enjoying the burial of the hatchets and, more importantly, his homecoming.
Personally, I am left with a way more peaceful, positive feeling of Warrior, and keep coming back to Daniel Bryan’s note of how much he loved his wife and was fascinated with his daughters.
Thus, we say goodbye to the imperfections and make room for the surviving, encouraging, ultimate memories that will live on.