WHERE WOULD I BE IN PRO WRESTLING WITHOUT CHARLTON HESTON? That might sound like some kind of misnomer but remember that I'm the guy that used to don a burlap tunic, drag a cross into the ring and go toe-to-toe with a guy in a lion suit. In Beer, Blood and Cornmeal I cite Victor Mature's angst ridden performance in Demetrius and the Gladiators as the original inspiration for my Christians to the Lions matches, but my performance as Dante the Baptist would be nothing without Heston. When I began my Christian rant by shouting the word "YOU" and pointing at the drunks who were throwing food at me, I was doing my damnedest to channel Heston as Moses coming off of Mount Sinai.
But Heston served as more than just the inspiration for dramatic wrestling oratory, he was a conceptual inspiration as well. He was the Omega Man. He was El Cid. He was the son of son of Amram and Yoshibelle. Soylent Green was people. He wanted those damned dirty apes to get their stinking paws off of him. The lyrics to The Body Count's "Cop Killer" became an accidental piece of performance art in Heston's hands. NRA Conventions became exercises in psychodrama. Those of us who came up with so many loony Incredibly Strange Wrestling angles would have been nothing without absorbing hours of Heston on cable TV and laser discs.
While I watch Paul Giamatti struggle with an on again off again accent in John Adams, I can't help but long for Heston giving us the great men of myth and history through clenched teeth. His Andrew Jackson barely sounded any different from his wily Scot in Mother Lode but it hardly mattered. Heston had it where it counted - he was captivating in costume.
Now I'm a big government loving defeatocrat liberal (or whatever other insults you want to hurl at me), but I love Heston. One thing I can say for sure is that it is now, and only now that Walter Mondale or Russ Feingold can have any hope of prying Chuck's rifle away from him.
This blog is syndicated from my regular blog at http://beerbloodandcornmeal.com/blog/