Money, money. Yeah, yeah. Does anyone else remember the slogan for Cryme Tyme? Shad Gaspard and JTG were a tag team in WWE from 2006-2011 (with a hiatus in there for supposedly unacceptable behaviour), and JTG was a singles wrestler with the company until his release in 2014.
Now JTG is trying to scrounge some money, money from fans who might want to read his tales of woe. Thanks to wrestling statistician extraordinaire Chris Harrington (@MookieGhana), JTG’s publication was brought to my attention earlier this week. It was one of those things that I wouldn’t have bothered with, as I had no interest in JTG, but the price tag – one dollar – made it hard to resist. It’s very psychological, wouldn’t you say? If it was free, I’d probably ignore it. Free? Worthless! But one dollar? That’s low enough to be hilarious, without seeming like a rip-off if it stinks. Besides, it’s called “DAMN WHY DID I WRITE THIS BOOK?” so JTG had already scored more points with me in 2 seconds than in his entire career.
Obviously, this isn’t going to be a formal book review, as I’ve done with other books in the past. Let’s take the medium into consideration. This is not glossy, hardcover tome; it was a PDF file that I downloaded for a dollar. To be precise, I had to pay $1.23 Canadian, so maybe my expectations should be higher.
In short: it was worth it!
I had a lot of fun “listening” to Jay vent about all of the politics, outdated conventions, and ridiculous attitudes that plague pro wrestling. Nothing came as a surprise, but it was enlightening nonetheless, as he gave very specific examples of how frustrating it can be to finally live your dream, and find it less than ideal. I use the term “listening” to JTG because he’s written it (giving credit to his wife for a lot of help) in a very personable voice. You feel like you’re sitting down with him to hear some stories, and he’s linked them all together with a common theme: heat.
He defines the term heat as it applies to pro wrestling, and talks about how heat affected his experience with WWE. Jay throws the curtain back on how things really work in the locker room, and he was around long enough – and got enough bouts of heat – that his stories are many and varied. He knows that publishing these stories aren’t going to help his heat, but owns it, and adds the disclaimer that it’s just his side of the story. I think he had a lot to get off his chest, and decided that this was the best route.
What I found most interesting was that JTG tells a lot of stories that implicate top Superstars as being rude, egotistical, jerks – but he rarely names names. Every now and then, he gives a small clue as to who it might be, so I’d be curious to swap guesses with other people who’ve read “DAMN WHY DID I WRITE THIS BOOK?” Conversely, JTG does name the people who were more kind and fair-minded along the way (or, gives enough clues that it’s quite obvious). It’s a light, gossipy read, and JTG has an excellent sense of humor. He appreciates being given the chance to wrestle for WWE, but left with the opinion that a union is sorely needed for this antiquated sideshow.
That’s all I’m going to tell you! Go ahead and download it for yourself, it’s a short read at 60 pages, with personal photos thrown in. Don’t expect flawless editing, but do expect a charismatic look at what we all probably regarded as a “less than” run in WWE. I hope JTG finds work elsewhere and is able to show his personality on another stage.
Download here (pay with PayPal): https://payhip.com/b/7E0j