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[whitespace] Stephanie Stephanie, the million $$ bitch.

Sluts At Ringside

Following the signs to WWF's Slam 2001

By Justin Berton

Riding my bike through downtown on a Sunday afternoon this summer I passed a middle-aged woman sitting on a park bench holding a sign above her head that read, "Stephanie's fake boobs are whore-able." I hit the brakes.

Before I could approach her, and her young children, another person holding a sign walked by. Written in pencil, his read, "Let the boobies hit the floor, let the boobies hit the floor, let the boobies hit the floor."

My first assumption was that I had ridden into a rally protesting breast implants. Then, across the street, I saw a mass of humans headed directly toward me, many of them carrying their own homemade signs. "Stephanie is a Million $$$$ Bitch"; "Stephanie Slut"; and (my personal favorite) "Slut Slut Slut Slut Slut Slut = Stephanie."

Curious now, I joined the march up Santa Clara Street. Smiling moms and dads pushed strollers; teenage dudes sported Blink 182 shirts; bored-as-beans girlfriends hurried a few steps behind; some people wore masks.

A few minutes later we arrived at the Compaq Center, home of The World Wrestling Federation's Summer Slam 2001, sponsored by Chef Boyardee.

The main event matched The Rock against Booker T., whoever they were. My objective--as a reporter, of course--was to get a peek at Stephanie and the bosom that provoked grown women to create words like "whore-able."

I scalped a first deck ticket for $30, and took my seat next to a grizzly bear of a 23-year-old named Doug. Doug came alone, and agreed to interpret the show for me. He warned that he was more interested in the stunts the wrestlers performed, and didn't get caught up in "the soap opera aspect of it all." When the row of boys behind us started chanting "Y2Gay, Y2Gay" to insult the wrestler nicknamed Y2J, Doug looked at me and sniffed, "Dorks."

Inside the sold-out venue few people spoke about the New Economy. The only nod toward the city's relevance came when wrestler Chris Jericho appeared on a large video screen (to thunderous applause) and dissed his opponent's escort for the evening, the aforementioned Stephanie. "Stephanie has the home field advantage here," Jericho said. "After all, we are in the Silicone Valley."

After Jericho disappeared, a dozen pipe bombs exploded in rapid succession--scaring me straight out of my seat--followed by a metal-rap theme song with the screaming chorus, "Let the bodies hit the floor, let the bodies hit the floor, let the bodies hit the floor."

Doug was chuckling by the time I landed. When two wrestlers placed a 12-foot ladder in the middle of the ring, climbed to the top, and knocked each other to the mat--both doing a somersault in midair before landing flat on their backs--I unleashed a high-pitched scream that frightened even me: "Holy Christ!"

"See," Doug said, eyeing the two limp bodies on the mat, "people say it's fake but you can't tell me that it doesn't hurt."

In the next match, Stephanie McMahon appeared, and she came to the party wearing a black leather tube top, black leather miniskirt and black knee-high stiletto boots. Her long brown hair was crimped and kinked in a few places.

The fans immediately chanted, "Slut! Slut! Slut!" while they pointed fingers in unison. Stephanie gamely pumped a fist above her head as if to say, You got that right.

"Why do they say that about her?" I yelled over to Doug. He shrugged. "Long story."

"So," I yelled again, "what's the story with her boobs?"

"I dunno," Doug said. "They look different every time you see her, so you know something's up."

Unfortunately, from where Doug and I sat, convincing evidence one way or the other couldn't be gathered.

In her role as escort, Stephanie didn't do much during the match except for circle the ring and pout. Apropos of nothing--to my eye at least--the enemy wrestler leaned over the ropes, grabbed Stephanie by the arms, and started kissing her.

The crowd roared from here to Sacramento. While Stephanie tried fighting her fond assailant off, a kid behind us yelled, "She probably likes it!"

When the buffed-up wrestler was finished, he dropped Stephanie to the floor. The ringside fans jeered and pointed at her. She crawled around on her hands and knees, picked herself up, dusted herself off, and ran off the floor to a mob's chant. The moment was over.

On my way home, I buzzed from the electric show. I heard the crowd's enthusiasm in my head for hours, sure, but I had to agree with Doug's take on wrestling: People say it's fake, but you can't tell me that it doesn't hurt.

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From the November 15-21, 2001 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2001 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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