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Vandy! (September 1996)


Beer!  (February 2006)

Issue # 304

Date:  Thursday September 9th, 1999  2:50 pm

The Wrestling Booking Sheet

After reading the extremely heartfelt, sincere dedications to Brian
Hildebrand, I am left with many questions. Since many of them have no
explanation I'll focus on one: Brian was a man I wish I knew.

Since I didn't know him, I'll leave the rest of the words to those who
did. For a glimpse into what people are feeling right now, two web
sites have some very special articles honoring Brian. Visit & to learn more
about this special man.

Our own dedication is borrowed from "Pro Wrestling Between The Sheets" the website of my colleague Fritz Capp.

Bob Magee, one of the very talented writers of PWBTS, shared his
feelings on Brian. I hope you find it as moving as I did…

Bob Magee (BobMagee1)
Pro Wrestling: Between the Sheets

'I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don't let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories...

I'm so tired but I can't sleep
Standin' on the edge of something much too deep
its funny how we feel so much but we cannot say a word
We are screaming inside, but we can't be heard...

But I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don't let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories...

I Will Remember You
(Sarah McLaughlin, Seamus Egan, and Dave Merenda)
(c) 1999

Of all places, I was I was at a wake for the uncle of friend Kathy
Fitzpatrick, when my younger brother John called her on her cell phone
at the funeral home, and passed on the news after receiving it from
PWBTS's Fritz Capp....

I will always remember Brian Hildebrand as a man who lived and loved
the wrestling business, who got to live his dream of making a living in
wrestling as referee Mark Curtis for World
Championship Wrestling. I remember a man who lived to his last
day with more courage than anyone I've ever had the privilege to know.

Brian fought stomach cancer for nearly two years, after being diagnosed
in October 1997. He refused to allow cancer to stop his incredible
spirit and his wonderful sense of humor. He seemed amazed and somewhat
embarrassed at all the attention his battle with cancer received.

As the Sarah McLaughlin song indicates...too many times we keep our
thoughts inside us when they are screaming out to be heard. But Brian
was such a very special person that he has inspired all of us who were
friends, family, fans, or co-workers to share our feelings on such a
funny, dedicated, committed individual who has been and always will be
an inspiration to live each day of our lives to their fullest...and to
follow our dreams, no matter how impossible they may seem.

I had the privilege of knowing Brian Hildebrand for six years, since
Smoky Mountain Wrestling's Fanweek 1993. Brian is responsible for two
of the most special experiences of my life, Fanweek 1993 and 1994. For
those who aren't familiar with them, SMW Fanweek was held every summer
from 1993-1995. It was made up of a traveling road show, combined with
barbecues, Q&As, and marathon videotape parties.

Brian Hildebrand was the reason these yearly celebrations were
possible, because of his non-stop organizational work during the weeks
leading up to the events; and during the moment to moment problems that
occur when one is trying to please 55 human beings and Jim Cornette,
AND work as referee 'Mark Curtis' all at the same time.

Brian always did this with such unfailing patience, good humor, never
forgetting to still be a fan of the very business he worked in. That's
the reason why he always used the word 'Mark' in his ring name.

My favorite Fanweek story involves the time in August 1994 at Fanweek
that I had to go with Brian to
Knoxville's West Town Mall to get Jim
Cornette a new tennis racquet. It seemed a local fan had taken it upon
himself to steal Jim's racquet at a SMW house show the night before.
Brian and I went to a sporting goods
store and got the racquet. The clerk fell all over himself meeting
'Mark Curtis'. I stood and watched. As the clerk rang up the purchase,
he asked me 'Can I help you, sir'. I replied 'I'm just here with Mr.

We walked away into the Mall to grab lunch, and Brian asked me
(referring to my keeping kayfabe) 'How in hell did you just do that?'
My reply: 'Because you and Jimmy taught us to remember that your folks
down here 'still believe'.' It can be said, Brian, so did you, for your
entire career in the wrestling industry.

its the reason that he was honored at the last Eddie Gilbert Memorial
Weekend in
Philadelphia in 1998. He was the surprise honoree at the
Gilbert Memorial Banquet. Brian had called me days before the Banquet,
wondering why Jim Cornette and NWA-NJ promoter Dennis Coraluzzo were
calling him numerous times to make sure he was coming.

Brian said 'Bob, what in hell is up here?' I replied, not wanting to
ruin the surprise, but knowing he'd smell me fudging a mile away...
'Well, if you actually got Dennis to return a phone call...if you got
Corny calling that many times in a week...I'd bring a suit...and be
prepared to say something'.

The tribute that Jim Cornette did for him at that Gilbert Banquet was
pure Cornette, totally irreverent as usual, but also with great

The kind of person Brian has been is also the reason that WCW honored
him with a a night dedicated to him in Knoxville some months back, with
a classic match of Chris Jericho/ Eddie Guerreroagainst Dean
Malenko/Chris Benoit... and with Ric Flair and the Four Horsemen
presenting Brian with a championship belt, then getting Brian involved
in the finish. The
Knoxville show was an event reported all over the
wrestling world.

Most recently, there was the 'Curtis Comes Home' show in
Rostraver, PA.
Jim Cornette, Shane Douglas, Chris Jericho, Eddie Guerrero, Mick Foley,
Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko, Tracy Smothers, Chris Candido, Tammy Sytch,
Public Enemy, Dominic DeNucci, Al Snow, D-Lo Brown, Terry Taylor, Les
Thatcher, and Sandy Scott took part in this tribute in Brian's

Brian kept himself going through sheer will and determination that he
refereed a match for a local independent promotion only days before his
death. He had the often-expressed hope of returning to work fulltime
for WCW, and never gave up that dream.

It can be said that at the time Brian Hildebrand left this world, he
knew he was loved and respected by all within the business he himself
loved so much.

While a small man in stature, Brian showed us all a giant heart that is
an example for us all.

Brian is survived by his wife, Pamela Murphy-Hildebrand.

For those who wish to send condolences to Pam and to the Hildebrand
family, you can do so at the following address:

The Hildebrand Family
1351 Gentry Road
Talbott, TN 37877-9015

According to WCW/'s Bob Ryder on last night's WCWLIVE, a
memorial fund will be established in Brian's name. Information on this
fund will be made available as soon as it is made public.

Rest in peace, dear friend. You will be missed more than you can ever

Until next time....
Bob Magee
Bob Magee is a columnist for PWBTS 2000. He can be reached at
By Steve Appy

Most of us agree on one thing: WCW must elevate some of their talented
mid-carders to main event status. Everybody this side of Eric Bischoff
agrees on this. The debate begins when we mention who should receive
the franchise-size pushes. Below I'll examine the names often
mentioned in this discussion, and my own thoughts on their potential.

1) Chris Benoit
In my opinion, a no-brainer. I've already outlined my own ideas
regarding Benoit, and he should be pushed to the top echelon.

2) Booker T
This guy is athletic, likeable and ready to be the man. Don't let him
team with the supremely untalented Stevie Ray (put Harlem Heat be put
on the shelf for good).

Since so few African Americans have been given even mid-card push,
Booker also appeals to an often neglected demographic. Booker T should
be a headliner (plus he has the size that many of the potential stars
do not).

3) Billy Kidman
Probably the most appealing of the young lions. Keep him out of the
Cruiserweight Division and don't let him talk about "chicks" and he
will get over big time.

4) Eddie Guerrero
Should be pushed as one of the top heels; although sometimes presented
as a comedy act, he will come off as legit if paired against top

Although unproven in interviews, my hunch is that he can really pull of
the old dastardly heel routine. My one hope is that WCW will keep him
out of stale stereotypical storylines (like the LwO).

5) Buff Bagwell
A solid (if sometimes lazy) worker with a questionable attitude. A
neon sign to suspicious government investigators. Why should WCW
invest time in Buff Bagwell.

Because he is one of the best heels in the business. Bagwell really
does come off as unlikeable, and he has heel charisma matched only by
Chris Jericho. Although an ineffective babyface, the guy really can
draw heel heat.

6) Disco Inferno
A personality that makes you watch; Disco knows the business, and he's
destined for the big time.

Only one obstacle stands in the way; Disco has zero credibility in the
ring. Because of the humorous (and entertaining) approach he takes to
his character, the audience doesn't see any reason to take him
seriously. Once WCW puts him over a few top stars clean, this
perception will change.

7) Rey Mysterio Jr.
I would make Mysterio the cornerstone of the Cruiserweight division, a
division which would not mix at all with the Heavyweights. When Rey is
forced to stand next to Nash & Sid we are reminded exactly how small he
really is.

Let Mysterio face Juvi & Psychosis in a division where there is no
interraction with the Heavyweights; as much as they may love "The
Filthy Animals" concept, Rey is better showcased against world class
workers who can make him look good as well.

8) Perry Saturn
I'm still torn on Saturn; he can look great against the right opponent,
and awful when faced with someone who can't carry him.

There's something about him that works, though. I think an ultra-tough
heel (he's already a poor man's Taz, though actually more talented)
role would finally be the fit for Saturn.

9) Konnan
I don't understand the appeal; a mediocre performer who I don't find
the least bit appealing. Besides that, he's a pain in the ass.

Still, there is something that the audience reacts to with K-Dawg.
When the mostly whitebread WCW audience joined Konnan in reciting
Spanish chants, that was a sign of being truly over. I would give him
a push and let him prove he can sustain it…

10) Dean Malenko
One of my personal favorites; a solid mid-card performer who is one of
the best workers in the country. At the same time, at 37 years old, he
should probably be kept at his current level.

Actually very funny, as listeners to WCW.Live can certify. If given a
chance to talk he will surprise many viewers.

Who would be elevated/kept at high mid card status:
Kanyon, Bam Bam Bigelow, Psychosis, Juventud Guerrera Jr., La Parka,
Vampiro, Chavo Guerrero Jr., Norman Smiley, Steven Regal, Kaz Hayashi

Who should be buried/eventually phased out:
Shane Douglas, Ernest Miller, Rick & Scott Steiner, Brian Knobbs,
Stevie Ray, Brian Adams, Van Hammer, Public Enemy, Sonny Onoo, Barry &
Kendall Windham
ECW Stars Raven, Tommy Dreamer, and Francine will be signing
autographs at Herro's Sports Page, 4484 N. Oakland Ave in Milwaukee on
Saturday, Sept 18 from 2:00 to 4:00 PM. You get all three autographs
for just $30. For more info contact Herro's at 414-967-7970 or
Written by reader: EEBS12345

It is quite obvious that this "Who Gives the Best Interview" debate
will never end, but I felt the need to respond to UMWChris' comments.
To bring up "I was rowdy before rowdy was cool!" Piper, just helps to
solidify the fact that many fans just do not realize how really
terrible WCW has become.

Sure, Piper was the biggest "heat drawer" in the WWF in the
80's......but that's exactly it! We're talking about the 1980's!!! To
say that the Rock and Stone Cold constantly use the same line is
absurd, considering "The Great One" seems to come up with a new saying
(and shirt of course!) on a monthly basis.

Every time I hear a WCW fan say something, the first words that come to
mind are ...."Yeah, that was done 10 years ago." Yes, Arn may be the
only "mouthpiece" for Benoit right now, and yes, Piper is still a great
interview, but do you think that there will ever be a charismatic
wrestler in the WCW that can command the crowd with a simple eyebrow? I
doubt it.One of the "millions"....and "dozens".....
Rod Bell and Devon Fury will be featured along with fellow Wrestling
Superstars that will headline in Indianapolis this Wednesday, Sept15th,
at the Bingo Hall on Raymond St. The Main Event for this hard-core
super card will be Sabu vs. Abdullah The Butcher.

Other stars to appear will be Flash Flanagan and Kamalah Jr. along with
Bell and Fury. NWWA will provide details of the matches as soon as they
come in!! Highland a Must! NWWA in Highland this Saturday!

First off, the NWWA's Saturday Nights Main Event comes to Highland,
Indiana this Saturday night. Three Title Matches, Street Fights, High
Flying, and alot of Hardcore!

Tickets are moving fast so make sure that you are there early to get a
good seat. The venue, the Lincoln Center is located between
Indianapolis Blvd. and Kennedy Ave. on Lincoln St. Directions from
80/94 are Indianapolis Blvd. south to Lincoln St. Turn east and it is
about a block and a half. Due to the city, we could not provide signs
for directions. Call the hotline for more info,
219-641-5914.\ Tickets still available through Video Escapades, corner
of Kennedy and173rd St. and Novel-Tees, U.S. 30 in Merrillville.
The staff of The Wrestling Booking Sheet
Editor: Steve Appy
Columnist: Mark George
Columnist: SamJerry
Columnist: Fritz Capp
Columnist: Rick Phelps
Columnist: Cindy Barnes
Columnist: Josh Hewitt
Columnist: Swami
Columnist: Tom Misnik
Columnist: Nate Pelley
Columnist: Robert Troy (Osiris)
Tom Kirkbride
Columnist: Ryan S. Oaks
Columnist: Darren Kramer

Any submissions sent in by readers or columnists become the property of The Wrestling Booking Sheet, and are subject to editing due to grammar, spelling, or content. Any information taken from The Wrestling Booking Sheet must be credited properly, with our E-Mail address listed. We have no problem if you want to use our stuff; just credit it properly.

Copyright- Steve Appy of The Wrestling Booking Sheet ©1998, 1999, 2000


"When you're young and you pick up a guitar, it feels so powerful. It feels like you pulled the sword from the stone. I used to believe that it could save the world. But I don't really believe that anymore." - Bruce Springsteen

"The greatest challenge of adulthood is holding on to your idealism
after you lose your innocence and believing in the power of the human
spirit after you come crashing into the limits of the real adult
world." - Bruce Springsteen


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All Rights Reserved.

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