Anyone reading this would likely primarily know me as a journalist. However, for nearly nine years, I spent roughly three-quarters of those weekends on the road in towns large and small along America's East coast as Marcus "King Kong" Dowling, professional wrestling manager. As someone celebrating 31 years as a professional wrestling fan this year, the nine of those years that I spent working in and around the ring created a bond with not just the art of the business, but its unique spirit of brotherhood and how wrestling as an industry provides a terrific blueprint for any industry now being constantly faced with the need to stay flexible and ultimately progressive in a wildly progressive era. At a time wherein WWE is now slowly bringing managers back into vogue, it seemed an apropos time for me discuss the fine art of managing. This isn't going to be be preachy, overbearing or potentially making me out to be a pariah among "the boys." I'm not the best that ever did it (though I once billed myself as the "fifth best manager in pro wrestling history"), and in this article, I probably will touch on 1/10th of the lessons I learned overall (true tales on how to start a race-based riots and tales of sex, drugs and rock and roll have been largely excluded). Ultimately, within the lessons of the art of managing (which is important to taking a match and upping its level of intrigue) there are also lessons for life that can be gleaned from this, too. Though numbering far greater than seven, these are probably the best lessons I learned about wrestling (and life) from being a manager.
Besides having been an independent professional wrestling manager for a decade, Marcus Dowling is a Washington, DC-based writer who has contributed to a plethora of online and print magazines and newspapers writing about music and popular culture over the past 15 years.