Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Ron Hutchison: Pain Torture Agony!

Do yourself a favor and order the fantastic new book by Toronto's Ron Hutchison
Pain Torture Agony  Excerpts and available at http://crowbarpress.com/cbp-books/44-rh.html

Ron is a local legend around here but he will be familiar to all wrestling fans as THE trainer of stars. There were many that would endure his regimens which he dubbed PTA -Pain Torture Agony - the title of his autobiography.

Christian, Edge, Trish Stratus, Gail Kim, Beth Phoenix, Johnny Swinger, Joe E. Legend, and many others passed through Ron's training in Toronto, and the telling of his life as he made his way through the wrestling world is truly a fascinating read.

As a local fan who grew up in Toronto watching the same stars, his tale of fan-to-wrestler is the ultimate wrestling fans dream. He takes you from his days as a fan and into Sully's Gym as he realizes his dream of being a pro wrestler- and wrestling at Maple Leaf Gardens!

It's evident from the first days hounding Powers & Siki to train him that there is no substitute for HEART, hard work, and a desire to succeed. That message is abundant throughout the book.

In addition to the very thorough narrative (almost 200 pages with smaller print) there are a ton of great photos from his personal collection scattered throughout with a full album at the back of the book.

There's lots of great stories. A mix of road and ring and a ton of info around the wrestling scene in the late 80's through the 90's, and beyond. The East Coast tours in particular for this Canadian fan, are both revealing as well as a source of some great road tales.

It's a super interesting look at what goes into training, getting work, running TV, promotion, and arranging shows. The chapters dealing with pro training are a virtual encyclopedia on a side of the sport we rarely see.

I really learned a lot, both about Ron and the inner workings of that era. As it turns out I had missed Ron's pro wrestling debut in Summer 1983 on a McKigney show by one week (tell me it isn't so re: payoff). Did recall his WWF TV bouts early in the WWF years here (covered with some great local recollections), and didn't realize I was at the very first Apocalypse Wrestling card in Scarborough in which he had a hand in (have my own Abdullah connection to that one).

In typical Canadian fashion he downplays the role he played in others successes but there are lots of tributes added in from others. It works very well in the context of the book, lots of positive messages, working back to where it all started -Toronto's iconic Sully's Gym -which is prominent throughout..

It's a very honest and revealing look at pro wrestling as it really was. From defending being a fan in schoolyards, rinks, etc (did that too) to dealing with all the issues that go with wrestling in Ontario, across Canada - and Worldwide (see India!).

Overall a very informative and fun read. I thoroughly enjoyed Ron's story and would recommend it for wrestling fans of all ages. A great book to take to the beach - in any weather.

Well done !

Ron Hutchison is on Twitter at @RonHutchison1
Excerpts and available at http://crowbarpress.com/cbp-books/44-rh.html