Static begins the video stream with the usual trademark glitches paired with bands of gray and black flickering across the frame. The feed struggles against the electronic diffusion to let way a few stuttering frames of; “Lost Cause” Victor Vacio.
The man in black has his back turned from the camera, which is set against a simple, albeit dirty, RLW backdrop. The vertical hold slips on a more consistent bases than not; causing the Lost One to dance up and down without physically moving his person. The presentation appears flat and slightly off color, with a touch of grain, possibly suggesting to a learned eye that it has been filmed directly to VHS or some other form of lower technology.
“Some will simply never learn,” he begins with a methodical cadence and ominous tone. “No matter the abundant abuse; nor comprehensive heed. Some shall not advance or learn from their past transgressions; nor their futile attempts at rebuttal.”
The visual clears up to a degree and makes it’s best attempt at a semi-professional look. Although, falling short ... none the less.
“To aim for victory; is to tip your hand and reveal you have already forgone the emptiest of platitudes.” he continues.
Occasionally the feed backslides for a moment and the distortion returns to twist and toy with the image and audio; pitches dip low and high, static bursts scorch the ear and the attempted level of professionalism is lost more and more with each instance.
“There is no potential to be squandered. There is no talent untapped. There is only now. The unrelenting ticking of the timepiece, echoing through the lost eons gone by, like the cackle of the madman. The emptiness of what is and what will be ... bares no difference.
An entire generation destined to carry forth menial useless lives; raised to assume that somewhere … oh, somewhere out there is the promised land.” he barks before taking pause for effect.
The view freezes and gives the impression of the dreaded mid-video buffering dilemma. Only a split second later, as the audio continues, it is revealed that the source material is the problem; rather than throttling ISPs or some other range of first world aggravation.
“The land of champions.” he tags onto his dramatic display.
The frozen frame slowly distorts pixel by pixel into an unintelligible image, yet the audio persists. No matter, how poor the quality, of that in itself.
“The land of great men destined to achieve great things.”
The frame finally snaps back to life to bare the fruits of an, in all relativity, archich filming apparatus. In it’s absence, Vacio has approached the camera and his dark mask now fills the full frame.
“The proverbial land of milk and honey, where the meek shall actually inherit the earth; rather than toil in the fields of obscurity and long forgotten illusions of grandeur.” Vacio continues, his voice rising with each passing syllable.
The video feed slips away yet again. Dipping into an, apropos, blackness with only fleeting glimpses of the black mask peaking through the, ironically, inconsistent static.
“Sold on ill drawn cartoon dogs and flickering television screens inherently depicting the unlikely hero rising from the rubble to win the day and bask in the admiration.”
With a slight twitch of frame and a flash; the image returns to find Vacio withdrawn from the camera yet again. His back nearly adjacent to the backdrop and his voice and intensity continuing the rise.
“That of which, their would be compatriots; if only the disillusioned could ever begin to ascend to the aforementioned levels of their favorite television stars, place their idolatry and ill fated hope.”
Vacio begins to turn away from whatever late 80’s consumer grade camera equipment is currently pointed in his direction, only to snap back toward the lens, as if a new thought has entered the confines of his leather made concealment.
“These dreams are sold by minds well versed in the deception of the ill trodden and misinformed. Snake oil peddlers promising a cash prize in every bar of soap. Shuffling the cards of your dreams in the shell game that is your life. Shills for the shilling. Lambs to the slow slaughter.” he screams, apparently reaching his peak. He takes a short breath and continues with a more deliberate and sullen tone. “All to raise your expectations. Once you buy in … the currency is already gone. Convincing you to aim high, as they take a seat in the grandstands and watch your inevitable descent.
Vultures always on the ready offering up your next saving grace before the dust can clear or subsequently be cleared from your person.” He continues, “Your propensity to chase the clouds blindfolded and ill prepared has forever been a forgone conclusion. Men of confidence on the ready to fleece each penny from your pocket, all the while watering the seed of hope to make sure you keep playing the game.”
As to be expected; the video account of this speech begins to lose its traction yet again. Square white pixels begin to slowly pop up on the screen. First only one or two on opposing ends of the spectrum take hold like a pong game on the glitch.
“Give it your all. Try your best. Leave it all out there.”
The pong starter set begins to slowly multiply and spread.
“Go beyond a mathematically possible percentile to possess a small nick knack … give it home on your mantle or adorn your widening waistline.”
As one may give way and alluding to the prospect of continuation with interruption; three more arrive in its place.
“All this means nothing and … never has. A continual exercise in futility.”
The pixelation continues to build to a crescendo and the signal is lost once again. The audio continues on, while a clearly agitated Vacio rambles forth as his voice rises yet again.
“Mass Transit, aptly named, where we’ll see the transport of everyone’s favorite disc jockey from the land of misguided potential to depths of despair. Victory for the like of El Habanero will not only be empty, but also unobtainable.”
Just as it left us; the video slowly returns again pixelating small boxes of attempted color and movement. Each new arrival adding just a touch more to the whole. Some appear, only to tease and then vanish again or simply flash to white.
“Congruent with the intent and coinciding with the darkness dawning; a contest of this order ... under normal stipulations and pretext would be without its proposed finality. Without closure or satisfaction.”
The visual is lost as quickly as it was recovered.
“But as the hand is forced so shall the inevitable violence increase.”
The image, like a child’s see saw, resurrects itself once again. Vacio, having returned to the foreground and occupying the full frame once again; cocks his head to the side and his eyes widen and bulge out as he says, “Darkness will become you.”
The red line has reached its final destination ... on the video player and the presentation comes to a close abruptly.
I find myself thinking about what I’ve gotten myself into when I joined Red Line Wrestling. I’m just a dumb kid with a silly name, a mask, a big heart and even bigger dreams.
A few months later.
I’m still that dumb kid with a silly name and a mask on my face.
As for the big dreams?
They’re more like nightmares.
Mr. Dalton has been super cool to me. The fact that he still believes in me is awesome. Even more than him giving a derpy sixteen year old kid a chance to do the only thing that I’ve ever really thought about doing. And he’s kept believing in me, even when I’ve given him nothing to believe in.
First time in front of a camera, I was unsure of what to do or say.
Then finding out that I was going to take on a big rage monster like Ivan Dalkichev.
Yeah, passing out isn’t cool.
Getting beat up and bullied by Ivan sucked.
But I didn’t give up. Even when the nightmares wouldn’t end.
Even when I can’t talk for some reason in front of the camera.
Even though I have to use boombox and a bunch of random audio clips to say stuff.
I still don’t know why, I can’t. Maybe I should talk to someone about that?
Maybe. Maybe later. Maybe not.
I gotta do something about Mass Transit first.
I walk into the RLW promo booth, my trusty boombox in my right hand. I grab the wooden stool that sits in front of the camera and adjust it before setting my boombox down.
I look into the camera and clear my throat, maybe today I’ll be able to talk.
Okay, one more try. Really try Habby, what would Danny Dalton say?
YOU CAN DO IT, HABBY! DANNY BELIEVES IN YOU!
Oh well. I turn and press play on my boombox and the mish mash sound begins to play, sounding like an audio version of a ransom note.
“Hola, mi amigos of ARRRRRR EL DOUBLE YOU!”
*cue the sound of a Mariachi strumming a note on his guitar.*
Big smiles and thumbs up.
I point at the camera.
“I DO NOT UNDERSTAND YOU!”
I clench my fists. I really am quite confused by this guy. He’s beat me up a couple of times now, but he doesn’t want to win. I don’t get it.
“YOU HAVE. CONFUSED. ME!”
I start walking back and forth.
“YOU WANT TO FIGHT. BUT YOU. DON’T. WANT TO WIN?!”
“YOU BEAT. ME. UP. THEN WALK AWAY!”
I raise a hand, my index finger pointing to the sky as an ‘ah ha’ kind of moment.
“AT. MASS. TRANSIT. YOU. WILL HAVE. NO CHOICE!”
“YOU WILL HAVE NO ESCAPE!”
“EL. HAH. BAH. NAIR. OOH!”
“WILL BRING. A FURIOUS. FIGHT!”
“YOU WILL. HAVE TO. BEAT. ME!”
“THERE IS NO. DIS-- QUALIFY --CATION!”
“BECAUSE. I WILL. NOT STOP. FIGHTING!”
“YOU. WILL HAVE. NO CHOICE!”
“BEAT ME. OR I. BEAT YOU!”
(ooc: super sorry for posting so late in the period)
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