Recently I was talking to a friend about his new blog that he started and was telling him about how he should write an introductory blog about who he was, why he is writing and the reasons for his passions. It occurred to me after I talk to him about it that in 2004 when I started this blog I never wrote a introductory blog about myself and why I love sports and pro wrestling. Obviously by now you know why I am writing this so here it goes. I was born Joseph Williamson in 1985. When I was born I had multiple medical problems such as congenital heart disease, bilateral club feet and my liver was out at birth. I was given a very short time to live and defied the odds. Along the way of defying those odds I had multiple surgeries but I also had the reality of broken dreams. Those dreams included being in professional wrestling or playing a physical full contact sports. Growing up I loved baseball and my summers always included a lot of baseball whether it be watching it on TV or listening to it on the radio. Ernie Harwell was always one of my favorites to listen to because of his unique love for the game.
My brother was a great athlete and still loves sports to this day. He excelled in basketball and baseball which was something I admired and looked up to him for. I was such a fan of my brothers athletic skills that when I was finally able to play T-Ball I chose the same number as he wore which is still the same number I get on my custom shirts and jersey’s that I wear today. My mom always encouraged me to love sports and find ways to get involved even if I couldn’t play them. In 1997, my sixth grade teacher made me a waterboy for high for the Freshman Football team that he coached. It was there I relished my role and met one of my best friends that I still remain close to this very day. My step dad was always a big time football fan and influenced my love for College Football. In fact, he was recently inducted into the Ferris State Hall of Fame(Class of 2017) for being on the 1968 Football team that went undefeated. It was in high school where I developed a huge love and passion for writing. Even though I was writing about technology and in charge of the school’s newspaper website I had a vision in my mind for the future. That vision was Hollywood’s World of Sports, a blog about pro wrestling that eventually turned into that and sports.
The roots of the Hollywood nickname come from being a huge Hulk Hogan fan growing up. I was and still am to a degree a Hulkamaniac. In 1996, when he became a member of the New World Order I started to wear a lot of black and white. One of friends started calling me Hollywood and it stuck. There have been variations of the nickname, like Hollywood Joe, Hollywood Joey, HoJo, Hollywood JW and obviously the blog being called Hollywood’s World of Sports. Hulk Hogan even influenced one of my biggest passions in sports and that’s being a Carolina Panthers fan. Shortly after the Panthers started Kevin Greene came out with Hogan and Randy Savage one night to the ring. As an eleven year old my thought was that if he was with Hogan and Savage he must be superhuman like them. I never stopped being a Panthers fan even when Greene retired in 2000. Being from Michigan I’ve always loved the Tigers, Pistons and the Red Wings. During the Jordan Era I was always torn between the Bulls and Pistons. I loved my home team but always had so much respect for what Michael Jordan did on the basketball court. Now a days I still love the Tigers at heart but I’ve really become a huge fan of Aaron Judge and what he’s doing. The young man plays the game with such a humility and respect. I can’t help but admire someone like that.
My love for pro wrestling is almost like a second religion but will never be as important my faith in Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. With that being said I have loved pro wrestling my entire life. I’ve always been a fan of the larger than life stars like Hogan and the great heels like Mr. Perfect and Ted Dibiase. Over time I have really appreciated the in ring skills of Shawn Michaels, CM Punk, Bryan Danielson, Samoa Joe and AJ Styles. My current favorite is the “Swiss Sensation” Cesaro. I love his superhuman strength and his technical prowess in the ring. In 2008, I lived my dream by managing my high school best friend and being one of the things I always loved. A few years ago one of my friends gave me the nickname “Human Almanac of Pro Wrestling” because of how much knowledge I have crammed in my head. When it comes to hobbies and interests pro wrestling is and always will be my first love. Every kid should have a love and passion that allows them to have an imagination and that was pro wrestling for me as a kid.
Hollywood’s World of Sports serves multiple purposes for me. The first one that comes to mind is fulfilling my love love for sports and wrestling along with my love for writing. It allows me to be engaged with the things I love without being physically involved. Secondly, I wanted to give kids with physical disabilities hope and encouragement by showing them that there are ways to be involved with the things you love without being physically involved. No kid and no human being for that matter should be told that they can’t do something, because of disabilities, limitations or physical ailments. As a congenital heart patient who has been through three open heart surgeries my struggles have not made love sports any less then if I were participating in them. I love pro wrestling, I love sports and I love the people that engage me in conversation about both. I hope will be providing opinions and having heated conversations for many years to come. My motto for this blog has always been “Controversy Doesn’t Come Without Criticism.” A new motto comes to mind and that would be “Pursue your passions that go beyond anything physical it may require.”
Photo Credit: Bri Goodyear Luginbill (People Picture Co.)