The Basement Federation

Growing up in the church had its benefits, not least of which was the sense of community that fostered lifelong friendships. One of my closest friends was Eddie, who was much closer to my brother’s age than mine. He was like a big brother to me, protecting me on countless occasions as we navigated the tumultuous terrain of adolescence. E’s basement became our refuge, a sanctuary for our tight-knit group of friends who were eager to escape the confines of religious doctrine and explore the limits of our growing bodies. We shared a love for pro wrestling, which was reaching new heights in the late 90s and early 2000s, during what would come to be known as the Attitude Era. We spent countless hours watching our heroes battle it out in the squared circle, emulating their moves and absorbing their larger-than-life personas. Inspired by their athletic prowess and infectious charisma, we decided to create our own underground wrestling federation. Armed with a sense of adventure and a healthy disregard for authority, we transformed E’s basement into a makeshift ring, complete with padded mats to cushion our amateur grappling. We crafted our costumes from whatever materials we could find, assuming the roles of our favorite wrestling superstars. My brother took on the persona of the Texas Rattlesnake, Stone Cold Steve Austin. E embodied the dark, mysterious aura of The Undertaker, while I assumed the cocky swagger of the Heartbreak Kid, Shawn Michaels. Word of our underground fight club spread like wildfire, fueled by whispers in the bathrooms of Kingdom Halls throughout the Jehovah’s Witness circuit. Our roster swelled as more and more young rebels flocked to our secret meetings, eager to challenge the status quo and push their physical limits. The church was not blind to our transgressions. They called private meetings with our parents, urging them to shut down our rebellious enterprise. While they succeeded in dismantling our makeshift ring, they unwittingly stoked the flames of rebellion within us. Their attempts to suppress our youthful exuberance only served to strengthen our resolve and reinforce our sense of camaraderie. In the years that followed, many of us would ultimately leave the church, our underground wrestling adventures acting as a catalyst for our departure from the religion. However, the friendships we forged in that basement ring would stand the test of time, transcending our religious affiliations and remaining an indelible part of our identities.

Similar Posts