Crowbar Press

"I Ain't No Pig Farmer!"
"I Ain't No Pig Farmer!"
BOOK DETAILS

Paperback: 295 pages

Dimensions: 6x9

Publisher: Crowbar Press

Photos: 239 b&w

Cover: Full color

ISBN: 978-1-9403910-2-1

Item #: cbp19-ds

Price: $22.95  $19.95


 

 
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"I Ain't No Pig Farmer!"


Synopsis  |  Excerpts  |  Chapter Titles  |  Index  |  Reviews  |  Crowbar Press

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"I suddenly felt the earth tremble, as if we had been hit by an earthquake.  I began to wonder if a natural disaster would be my savior and help me escape what I thought would be my Waterloo.  But, no.  It wasn’t an earthquake.  It was the wild-eyed, out-of-control human beings breaking the ring apart from the outside.  The wrestling ring, which weighed close to 1,800 pounds, was being shaken back and forth and side to side by the angry mob."

  In an era when few people were allowed into professional wrestling’s inner circle, Dean Silverstone pitched the idea of publishing an arena program to Harry Elliott, the wrestling promoter in Seattle, Washington.  Harry gave him permission and Dean’s career as a wrestling publicist began … when he was only 14 years old.

  An entrepreneur in every sense of the word, Dean wrote, created, printed, and sold the programs at Seattle’s Senator Auditorium and Masonic Temple for the next 11 years.  During that time, he also would promote spot shows, referee, write and handle publicity for Elliott’s promotion, act as box-office manager, and run a few towns of his own.

  Dean never wanted to be in the spotlight.  He simply wanted to write about, referee, and promote the superstars of wrestling.  When Elliott closed shop, Dean went into business for himself and formed Super Star Championship Wrestling.

  Dean tells about putting together a roster of talent and struggling to build his company, despite opposition from other promoters, who considered him to be an outlaw.  In the process, he faced anti-Semitism, unpredictable actions from his talent, crowd riots, warnings from the Hell’s Angels, collapsing rings, the tragic death of one of his top wrestlers, and even a Molotov cocktail.  Through it all, he developed a rapport and trust between himself and the wrestlers he employed.

  His story includes opening Golden Oldies Records — a retail business venture which would eventually grow to eleven stores in all parts of Washington state — hosting an annual reunion for veteran and retired wrestlers, and working on the board of directors for the Cauliflower Alley Club.

  This is the story of a self-made man, who, in his own words, was "born at just the right time in history."


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Excerpts

Excerpt from Chapter 3
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  My face turns a little red when I think back to my first meeting with Shag Thomas. In 1960, when I was 13 years old, I mustered up enough courage to approach him while he was watching another match from the back of the arena. He was standing next to a tall guy (although, everyone except Little Beaver would be considered to be "tall" when they stood next to Shag), who I later met as Mike Glover, aka J Michael Kenyon. I wanted to impress Thomas with my knowledge of wrestling, so I asked, "Hey, waddaya think of Frank Gotch?"
  Thomas politely answered, "Well, he must have been pretty good."
  As I turned to leave, I saw them look at each other and roll their eyes, silently voicing their opinions about me.

Excerpt from Chapter 4
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  I ... actually had the foresight to save several tapes.  Years later, in 2011, one of the participants of that time, Kurt von Poppenheim [Jack Pappenheim], was at our house, and I asked him to listen to one of the tapes from 1962.  As we listened, I could picture him standing in the ring with the promoter holding the microphone in front of his face and asking him who his tag team partner would be when they kicked off a tournament [on January 9, 1962] to crown the new tag team champions.  The young wrestler answered, "Fritz von Goering."  Fifty-one years later, I watched Kurt as he listened to himself.  His eyes widened and his facial expression was one of disbelief.  He couldn’t believe what he was hearing.  Suddenly, his eyes began tearing up.  I’m getting ahead of myself and my story, but that is just one example of what wrestling meant to many of the wrestlers who were around during a time when I was just a young, punk kid with a one-track mind.

Excerpt from Chapter 5
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  I printed charts, statistics, and other interesting news items, just like sports covered in newspapers.  My favorite creation was a "won-lost-draw" chart that appeared in each issue.  I’d list all the wrestlers who were working that specific night and list the number of wins, losses, draws, wins by disqualification, losses by disqualification, and finally, their winning percentage.  My won-lost charts included only Seattle results and the statistics dated from when the program began in May 1961.  That feature became so popular — not just with the fans, but with the wrestlers, as well — that I expanded it to create a "Never Defeated" chart:
  I knew the boys liked the charts because, one night, I overheard Bulldog Bud Cody tell Harry Elliott, "I’ll do a job in some other town for you ‘cause I don’t want to ruin my record in Seattle."

Excerpt from Chapter 6
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  On July 11, 1961, Gorgeous George came to Seattle to wrestle Leo Garibaldi.  The match was held at Seattle’s Aqua Theatre, which was an open-air stadium on the south shore of Green Lake [in the city’s north end].  It was the venue for the Aqua Follies, a water show which featured beauties attired in bathing suits performing around a man-made lake surrounded by spectator seats.  Harry Elliott installed the wrestling ring on pontoons in the center of the lake and it was at least the third show in Seattle ever held on water ...
When Gorgeous George won the decision over Garibaldi to end the match, Leo attempted to explain to the referee, Pago Pago [Al Noa], that George had illegally used the ropes to gain the pinfall.  Pago refused to listen and wouldn’t change his decision.  Much to the delight of the audience, when Pago walked over to George and raised his arm in victory, the frustrated Garibaldi dropkicked George from behind at the top of his shoulders.  The gorgeous one became airborne and sailed up and over the top rope.  He never came close to the ring apron and did a belly flop about five feet from the ring.  He immediately began to sink, which encouraged both (Al) Fridel and (Frenchy) Roberre to frantically row over to the spot where George went under.  As Roberre tried to pull the curly-haired wrestler to safety, he was yanked into the water by the struggling George.  George and Roberre began swinging wildly at each other, while Fridel attempted to use his oar to separate the two wet gladiators.  Roberre finally reached the safety of his rowboat, but he convinced Fridel not to aid the stricken Gorgeous George, and the poor man had to swim back to shore.

Excerpt from Chapter 7
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  After three or four weeks, Pampero (Firpo) began to open up to me.  He told me how unhappy he was working for Don Owen.  "They’re just not using me right here," he said.  "I think this is the only territory I will never come back to."
  His prophecy turned out to be true.  Pampero’s only feud in the Northwest was with Tony Borne, and even that didn’t surpass the semi-final level.  Don Owen didn’t give Pampero much time on TV for promos, either.  For someone who had headlined in other territories, he was all but sidelined here in the Pacific Northwest.

Excerpt from Chapter 8
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  All of a sudden, Jules Strongbow, the promoter, walked into the room.  Strongbow was a behemoth of a man.  He had been a wrestler in the ‘30s and ‘40s and probably weighed close to 300 then, but by that time, he was somewhat out of shape and weighed around 275.  He stood well over six feet tall and had an intimidating persona.  When he saw me, he stopped short.  He looked at Billy Lyons and asked, "Who’s this?"
  The Destroyer piped up, "Ah, he’s okay.  He works for Harry Elliott up in Seattle, and he did a few magazine stories for me up there."
  Strongbow’s voice was very authoritative and low-pitched, and he spoke slowly: "You know we only allow wrestlers in here.  No one else."

Excerpt from Chapter 9
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  I vividly recall an incident that took place at one Coliseum show.  When a fan broke through security and attempted to enter the ring, John Tolos clipped him over the head.  The entire incident happened in less than five seconds.  Tolos saw the guy, left his opponent, pounded the poor idiot, and then turned around and returned to working mode, locking up with Roy McClarty.

Excerpt from Chapter 10
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  Later that year, I made another trip to Oregon and met Don’s brother, Elton (Owen).  While I was there, I overheard Elton spewing profanities about Sam Muchnick, referring to him as "that Jew bastard in St. Louis."  Don also had a dislike for Muchnick, who was president of the National Wrestling Alliance.  I was upstairs in the PNE offices prior to a Monday night card in Vancouver one night when he told Sandor Kovacs, "You can go to Las Vegas and give your money to Sam Muchnick if you want, but that Jew ain’t getting another nickel of my dough."

Excerpt from Chapter 11
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  With Dean (Higuchi) unable to appear, my only big name was John Quinn, but the word "only" is a misnomer.  John Quinn could have been a main event in any arena in the world.  His 6-foot-7, 300-pound frame of solid muscle and athletic ability put him on top wherever he appeared.  His only downside was that he chose to homestead in British Columbia, and knowing that, the promoters used his preference to their advantage by paying him less than he was really worth.  John knew, however, that I would pay him a fair percentage, and gave his notice to (Sandor) Kovacs in August.

Excerpt from Chapter 12
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  (Bill) O’Mara (the television commentator) never appeared on camera from head to toe.  The interview camera only shot from the waist up, and when he called a match, it was off-camera.  If you saw his entire outfit, you’d think he was rather strangely attired.  He always wore a shirt, tie, and sports coat, because that was what was seen on screen, but the pants he wore … oh, man.  They were ratty, torn and stained.  He also wore white socks and tennis shoes.  One time, Chief Thundercloud planned to throw him into the ring so the camera would show how he really dressed, but that never happened.

Excerpt from Chapter 14
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  Afa and Sika Anoa’i [later known as the Wild Samoans] also were working for (Sandor) Kovacs and (Gene) Kiniski.  For some reason, they had two days off and just showed up at the Tuesday night house show in Seattle.  They actually purchased tickets (ringside), bought popcorn, and sat there watching the opening match.  The fans all recognized them, so their attention drifted from what was taking place in the ring to the unusual "guests" at ringside.  After the first match, they came into the dressing room and verbally put all the boys over.  One of them approached me (I didn’t, and still don’t, know one from the other) and said, "Kovacs said you were the devil in disguise, but you’ve got a great set-up here and your talent is terrific."
  I thought they were sincere, so we came up with the idea for them to watch another match, after which they would get up from their seats and attack the babyface in the ring.  I told them I’d give them $50 if they’d allow my babyface to kick the shit out of them.  They agreed and put on a crowd-popping, albeit brief, show.  I gave them the $50, but they left with $40 because they already had spent ten bucks on tickets and popcorn.  The experience made me wonder if it would be possible for me to get all my talent to buy tickets.

Excerpt from Chapter 16
Copyright ©  Dean Silverstone and Scott Teal
  I used to see Chris Colt's sister at spot shows.  She was an attractive female, but there was a hard edge to her features.  I don’t think she ever used the word "freaking," either.  She only knew the alternative word and used it constantly.  At spot shows, she would pick up a boy who was between 17 and 20 years old.  The lucky guy thought he was going to score that night, but little did he know … she was trolling for Chris.  When the matches were over, the three of them would leave the arena, hugging each other in anticipation of the party ahead.  I have a feeling the boys got more than they bargained for when Chris got them to his apartment ...

Excerpt from Chapter 17
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  I only had one instance where I had a problem with the host of an event.  One night in Lewiston, Idaho, the local promoter insisted on counting the box-office receipts and being the one to handle all the money.  Our share was supposed to be $4,600.  I was in his office when he counted out the cash.  I didn’t say a word when I saw him place six 20-dollar bills in a pile and say, "One hundred."  He counted out six more and said, "Two hundred."  He counted 46 piles of $100 each, but because he was so stupid, each pile actually contained $120.  As a result, he gave us an extra $920.  I took what he gave me and left.  He had been so insistent on being in charge of the money, and came across like he didn’t trust me, so I thought, "Who am I to argue?  He wanted to be in charge.  This must be what he wanted me to have."
  When he realized the mistake he had made, he went to the police and issued a warrant for my arrest.  Months later, after I was out of the business, I bumped into Dutch Savage.  He told me, "Do you know there’s a warrant out for your arrest in Lewiston, Idaho?"
  I never went back to Lewiston.  There probably is still a warrant for my arrest there.

Excerpt from Chapter 18
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  Yakima District Court Judge Leslie E. Vannice ruled there was "no collusion between Lumberjack Luke and Super Star Championship Wrestling, Inc.  Lumberjack Luke (Don Morrison), however, is an individual with ‘animal-like’ tendencies and has severe mental deficiencies, and therefore will be fined $1,000 for his actions on that night."
  I told Luke I would give him the thousand dollars, but he was so irate with the decision that he refused my offer and said he wanted to take care of it himself.
  He had 30 days to pay the victim’s attorney the $1,000.  On the last day, he showed up in the attorney’s office with a horrible-smelling bag of 1,000 one-dollar bills.  Luke had buried the bills behind his house in a pile of horse manure, and then took the three horses he owned and fenced them in a small area with his buried stash.  For the next 29 days, the horses urinated and defecated on, or near, the spot where Luke had deposited the dough.  Thirty days later, he unearthed the cash and left the soiled bills exactly as they were: dirty, filthy, stinking, rotting, and stained with waste.  He loaded the money into a sack, along with a hefty amount of ground soil, carted it to the attorney’s office, and dumped the contents on the receptionist’s desk.  "Give me a receipt," he demanded.
  The startled receptionist was dumbfounded and gagged at the smell.  I suppose the odor was unbearable and the mess it made probably required extensive cleaning of the office.  To Luke, that was worth a thousand dollars.

Excerpt from Chapter 19
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  On Thursday, August 16, 1990, I received a phone call from the road manager of Cher.  He explained that Cher was performing that night at the Tacoma Dome, but after her show, she would love to come to Golden Oldies to see the place.  The only condition was that no one other than me could be in the store.  I had some vintage records recorded in 1963 by a duo calling themselves Caesar & Cleo.  Caesar & Cleo actually was Sonny & Cher, and I thought Cher would get a kick out of seeing the rare vintage item, so I agreed to his terms and told him they could visit the store at two o’clock all by themselves.  I was there at two, and by two-twenty, I was beginning to get a little upset because they weren’t there.  Finally, at 2:45, I received a phone call.  It was Cher’s road manager.  "Man," he said, "we’re at Golden Oldies and it’s dark inside and there ain’t no one here."  It was only then that I remembered she had performed at the Tacoma Dome, and I realized they had gone to the Golden Oldies store in Tacoma.  We never did get together … her loss.

Excerpt from Chapter 21
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  One afternoon, I was upstairs in our bedroom watching the news on television, when I heard Ruth shouting from her office downstairs.  She always cussed and screamed when using the computer because, before she met me, she had been a systems analyst for Boeing Computer Services, and she was not terribly fond of a small local company called Microsoft.  So, at first, I thought nothing odd about the tirades of profanity emanating from downstairs.  The next thing I knew, she burst into the room where I was watching television, shook a piece of paper, and said loudly, "What’s wrong with this &*#)$(@ southern idiot?"  The "southern idiot" to whom her venom was directed was Scott Teal, who, at the time, was publishing a wrestling magazine called Whatever Happened to ...?
  To put this story in its proper time-frame, in 1996, I knew almost nothing about Scott.  Our paths never crossed until Ruth and I went to the Gulf Coast Wrestling Reunion near Mobile, Alabama.  Suffice it to say, Scott knew as little about me as I knew about him ...

Excerpt from Chapter 22
Copyright © Dean Silverstone & Scott Teal
  When Ruth and I first moved into that house, we hosted a "garden party" for our social friends (no wrestlers), as a way to pay back all the parties we had attended over the years.  We had about 75 people at our house.  They ate everything we had, left a mess, and left us with a bad taste in our mouth.  When we gave our first wrestling reunion, we had more than 100 people there.  They cleaned up after themselves.  They were polite, respectful, pleasant, and talked about how grateful they were to be invited.  During that first occasion, someone dropped a muffin on the floor and Fabulous Moolah [Lillian Ellison] used our carpet sweeper to clean it up.  Mike Lano impressed Ruth (and me) because he stayed after everyone left and picked up all the cups and paper that missed the garbage cans.  The place was spotless when he left.  I have a lot of respect for Mike because he has always supported the business, and that was the primary reason I invited him to our reunion.

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Chapter titles and contents

Acknowledgements
Foreword by J Michael Kenyon

1. "OOPS!"
Riot at the Masonic Temple in Seattle

2. A Bunch of Boats Going Fast
Overview of Dean's childhood ... Minor league baseball at Sick's Seattle Stadium ... Seafair Trophy race ... Discovering professional wrestling

3. 1957’s Version of Facebook
Wrestling and boxing magazines ... Research at the Seattle Public Library ... Publishing "Wrestling's Wrestlers" fan magazine ... Attending his first live match at Eagle's Auditorium ... Tony Borne's "big dark secret" ... Tag team partners feud

4. So You Think You Can Dance?
Dance class ... Northwest Championship Wrestling ... Madman Tito Kopa wins unfairly ... Bar Mitzvah ... Announcing his future aspirations ... Abe Jacobs, the rabbi's friend ... The reel-to-reel tape recorder ... Tag team tournament pairings

5. Ham ‘n’ Eggs
Dean's father figure ... How Harry Elliott became involved in pro wrestling ... Securing TV in the Seattle market ... Wrestling venues in Seattle ... Having his cake and eating it ... A startling discovery ... Publishing the "Northwest Championship Wrestling" arena program ... 5th Pole of the Mat ... Harry Elliott puts Dean over "in the ring" ... Harry gives Dean's programs to the fans -- for free! ... The Harry Elliott School of Advertising ... Behind the scenes of the program business ... The programs get a facelift with the addition of pictures ... Lucky-number programs ... Babs Wingo, the 300-pound hardcore wrestling fan ... The invisible seats ... Expense breakdown ... Tito Montez crys about a payoff ... Permanent reservations ... The Seattle championship trophy ... A $50 tip ... Bumper stickers ... Haystack Calhoun and his 325-pound wife ... The "candid" photograph ... Exposing Pepper Martin

6. Banana Pudding
Dean Silverstone Fan Club ... Meeting Buddy Rogers ... Dean's biggest payday ... Racial overtones in wrestling ... The most important color ... New printing press ... Expanding into Vancouver, BC ... Selling programs to "Crybaby" George Cannon ... Driving to spot shows ... A trip with Soldat Gorky and Ivan Kameroff ... An "unknown wrestler" enters a tournament ... Frenchy Roberre, Dean's first program interview ... Gorgeous George gets dunked in Green Lake ... Frenchy takes a bath in Lake Sammamish ... Two reunions compared ... What happened to Jerry Christy?

7. Shotgun Wedding
Kayfabed ... Hanging with Pampero Firpo ... A lesson learned from Pampero ... Pampero saves the life of Sir Oliver Humperdink -- and ultimately, his own ... Buying his first car ... Writing for the newsstand magazines ... Meeting Bobby Schoen, who would later become Bobby Shane ... Dean and Bobby tip-toe around each other ... Dean changes his name to Pago Pago ... Taught a lesson by Johnny Kostas ... Protecting the wrestling business ... Bobby Shane makes a surprising discovery ... Working out finishes with Dutch Savage ... Seattle's regular referees ... "The program seller" ... Dutch Savage chokes Don Leo Jonathan ... Pago Pago awards a match to the wrong wrestler ... Editing the school newspaper ... The Sensational, Intelligent Destroyer visits Garfield High School ... Refereeing spot shows ... Staging wrestling holds with Bobby Shane and Álvaro Velasco ... Shotgun wedding ... Bobby stretches a rookie at the Totem Athletic Club ... Laying out a promotion in the state of Washington ... Breakdown of the Washington and Portland wrestling territories ... Bobby returns to Seattle in the main event

8. The Langoliers
Aunt Florence and Uncle Lou ... Road trip to the Olympic Auditorium in Los Angeles ... "Visit" to the Fat Farm ... Meeting Jules Strongbow and Hardy Kruskamp ... Being kicked out of the dressing room ... Appointed promoter of Palmdale, California ... Giving notice to Charlie Moto ... Promoting Wenatchee, Washington ... Warning labels ... Postering towns ... Lou Thesz makes an appearance in "Dean's town" ... Thesz visits the "Wenatchee World" sports editor ... Wrestling Nerds Fan Club ... Enrolling at the University of Washington ... Flunking out of school ... The only promoter Red Bastien really liked ... Going into business for himself and promoting his own towns ... Meeting Michael Glover, aka J Michael Kenyon ... Promoting three wrestling cards ... Leroy (Bud) Jagger, the "kayfabe" wrestling promoter ... The Red Devil ... $20 payoffs minus expenses ... Glover's wife lays down the law ... "How to Lose Money Promoting Wrestling" ... The Lou Thesz of wrestling historians ... Concession stand "robbery" ... Signing Tony Borne and Shag Thomas ... Doing Borne a favor ... Booking a young, green kid named The Kentucky Kidd (who would later become famous under another name) in his first-ever match ... Port Angeles gets taken over by the wrestling office ... Promoting three new venues ... Roy McClarty makes an amazing recovery ... Roy McClarty swears ... The difference between "personal" and "business"

9. Twitterpated
Harry Elliott's son ... Meeing the future (2nd) Mrs. Silverstone ... The 87-percent discount ... It's a small, small world ... A close look at Harry Elliott, the person, the promoter ... The woman so ugly she scared away customers ... Transporting programs to Canada ... Local promoters Cliff and Helen Olson ... Offer to buy into the Washington territory ... Background of promoter Rod Fenton ... Promoting the big city of Ronald, Washington ... Sellout for John Tolos vs Moose Morowski match ... Vancouver promoters Sandor Kovacs, Gene Kiniski, and their "silent partner" ... Wrestling on television in Seattle is canceled and the market goes dark ... Kovacs and Kiniski buy Seattle from Harry Elliott ... The carny test ... Securing a new TV show for Seattle ... Making a pitch to Kovacs and Kiniski ... Don Owen puts the kibosh on the deal

10. I Wish I Had Talked to Ted Thye
Problems with Gene Kiniski and Don Owen ... growing up Jewish ... a discussion with Abe Yourist ... History of the Portland, Oregon, territory ... Dean's first encounter with Don Owen ... Advertising spot canceled ... The promoter Dutch Savage hated ... Dean's love/hate relationship with Dutch Savage ... The worst payoff man in pro wrestling

11. "Hello, Dean."
German noodle kugel ... Dean vs the Canadian government ... Dean gets fired ... The Canadian language barrier ... House of Printing ... A social life ... Wedding bells ... Sandor Kovacs makes an end-run ... The straw that broke the camel's back ... Visiting TV stations ... Getting a promoter's license ... Super Star Championship Wrestling ... The perfect shade of blue ... Stolen folding chairs ... Putting together a crew ... "Hello, Dean." ... A trip with Bobby Shane ... 30,000 calories ... Highway robbery ... Dean, Dean and Dean ... Lumberjack Luke, Great Gama, and Greg

12. Super Star Championship Wrestling The first TV taping ... The Dixie Hurricanes ... Dead silence ... The lost puppy ... Shirt, tie, sport coat, and tennis shoes ... Office tournament ... Rip Tyler destroys the Western States trophy ... Junior Bass ... Monster snake ... One of the boys ... Great Gama learns to speak English ... Honey buckets ... Kissing your sister ... Jewish-American princess ... Eddie the spic

13. Nothing New Under the Sun
Turning on the lights in Seattle ... The real vampire ... First major storyline ... The dressing room empties ... Household names ... Sellouts! ... Payoffs ... Billboard advertising ... Blue laws ... Mob mentality

14. Bobby worst
Competition ... Ax-handle matches ... Home court advantage ... Blackballed ... Fish eater ... Devil in disguise ... John Quinn gives a referral ... Long distance calls ... $3,800 phone bill ... 21-man battle royal ... Duane Anderson set up -- and arrested for burglary ... The case of the missing midget ... Greg Lake's Pinto ... Throwing fire ... The headless horseman does the rumba ... Bobby Jaggers, poster boy ... Bobby Shane's protégé ... High spot grocery list ... Bologna blowout ... Sleeping in a store window ... "That #$@&%*! Indian!" ... Problem child ... The FBI informant ... The business office ... The American Dream ... Miguel Silverstone ... Dean goes to prison

15. Dressing Room Board Meeting
Crazy Luke ... A legitimate tournament ... Psychological booking ... Major players board meeting ... The unanimous vote ... The birthday boy misses his birthday

16. The Alpha Male
Chris Colt and Ron Dupree ... The two faces of Chris Colt ... Tragedy in Ron Dupree's life ... The alpha male ... Mayhem, making money and headaches ... The seven grumpy dwarves ... Trolling in Volunteer Park ... Pills for Mike Miller's dog ... Invisible spiders and green scorpions ... Johnny, the normal Dupree brother ... The promoter's nightmare and dream ... The "honeymoon" suite ... The teepee fire ... Goldie Rogers crashes through a window ... A visit from a legitimate Hell's Angel ... "Real" wrestling ... Pay sheets turn up in the Portland dressing room ... Don Owen and Sandor Kovacs -- the "new" outlaw promoters in Yakima ... Buddy Rose's greatest fear ... Boxing "exhibitions" banned ... Greg Lake and the white tiger ... Incident in a funeral home ... William Colt III ... "Robbin' the cradle" ... Death in the wrestling ring ... Chris' sister trolls for young meat ... Chris finds a new livelihood ... "The man too bad for TV" ... Joe Cocker ... A surprise visit by Chris

Bonus chapter. Buried Alive by Chris Colt
Chris Colt tells about his visit to a funeral home mortuary.

17. The Bactrian Camel
Ronald, Washington ... Ray Steele gets "feedback" from a camel ... Box-office receipt snafu ... The arrest warrant

18. Molotov Cocktail
The financial aspects of making payoffs ... Dean becomes known as "The Boss" ... Payday game ... Ripper Collins leaves Portland without giving notice ... Ripper on the mike ... The bulldog and the python ... Ripper's cat wig ... The 40-minute monologue ... Yakima pig farmers ... Lumberjack Luke's comments go viral ... Luke goes on trial ... 1,000 one-dollar bills in a bag of manure

19. The End and the Beginning
Accident with a Brinks armored car ... Lawsuit! ... The death of Bobby Shane ... A barn full of 45-rpm records ... Super Star Championship Wrestling comes to an end ... Pro wrestling on PBS ... Once again, Seattle goes dark ... Diamond Belt Wrestling ... Promoting a show in Alaska ... The girl wrestler in the coal furnace

20. Lou Who?
The wrestling tapes disappear ... A new direction in life ... Golden Oldies Record Exchange ... An offer from Al Tomko ... The $14,000 record ... Living a normal life ... The GORP contest ... A record for Freddy Fender ... Breaking new ground for record stores -- the first "drive-through" ... Wrestling match with an octopus ... "Whipped Cream & Other Delights" ... Dale Chihuly and Jalacy J. Hawkins ... Pat Patterson records "Quando, Quando, Quando" ... Chicken songs ... The preliminary wrestler

21. The Wanna-Be Promoter
Ruth Silverstone intro to pro wrestling ... Meeting Ripper Collins and El Medico in Hawaii ... Origins of the first Northwest Wrestlers Reunion ... Dr. John Bonica ... The Cauliflower Alley Club ... Editing and publishing "The Ear" ... The Southern idiot ... A rib by Beautiful Bruce Swayze

22. Hector Dos
Memories of past reunions ... An assessment of Dean's mental faculties ... The difference between non-wrestlers and wrestlers ... Back in the publishing business (sort of) ... Kurt von Poppenheim sues the Portland Boxing and Wrestling Commission ... Tony Borne represents Don Owen in court ... Kurt von Poppenheim and Tony Borne reconcile ... Dutch Savage reconciles with Dean ... Red Bastien presents the "Golden Potato" award ... Frikkie Alberts reunites with Don Leo Jonathan ... Moondog Moretti makes a confession to Dr. Ken Ramey ... The ghost of a Siamese cat ... Hector, Hector Dos and Sis ... A thank you to Eddie Sullivan ... The final reunion ... Red Bastien "marks out" for Kay Bell ... Inita Conway slams the door in Johnny Valentine's face ... A wanna-be promoter from Microsoft

23. 5th Pole of the Mat
Vince McMahon takes over the world ... Disturbance at a Bar Mitzvah ... Missing the boat ... Final thoughts

Photos and Memorabilia
Index

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Feedback

Feedback

 
  Hi Dean,
  I got your new book, "I Ain't No Pig Farmer!", from Crowbar Press this week and spent a whole day reading it.  I found it very interesting.  A page-turner as they say.  I've been a fan since I was 9 years old.  I am 72 now and I like going back to the Golden Age.  You brought up a lot of things I didn't know that interested me.  I had never heard of Chris Colt, but I was fascinated about what you wrote about him.  I did go to YouTube and found a couple of matches he was in.  As you described, he was a great performer.  Even though he led a wild life of drugs, alcohol and sex, a couple of sites on the net say he got religion in the end and changed his life style.  Also, on the net it says he died in 1996 in a shelter in Seattle, possibly of AIDS.  If I calculate right, he was only 49 years old.
  I hadn't heard of Arman Hussain either, but I found on YouTube a match he had with Kerry Von Erich.  He died young, too, at age 62 in a nursing home in Dallas.  According to the net there was no family at the funeral home.  I think he was a mystery and a very private man.  In Gary Hart's book, he says he and Arman were friends, but that he was "radical" about his faith.  I read that when Red Bastein had reunions for former wrestlers in Texas, Arman declined to participate.  It appears he marched to his own drummer.
  Also, I liked the segment on Alfred Ticineto, Jr. who is also a friend of mine.
  Lastly, I like what you wrote about Diabetes Mellitus since I am a physician/psychiatrist.  I like how you have studied the disease so you can help prevent any complications.  I wish more patients would do that. LOL
  Thanks again for writing this book and giving me enjoyment in reading it.

Jonathan Marven


 
  "I Ain’t No Pig Farmer" is a book about Seattle wrestling promoter Dean Silverstone’s experiences in the wrestling business, but it is also many books.  It’s a love story, how the love Dean discovered for wrestling at an early age lasted his whole life, and how that love blossomed into a great career in the sport, full of wonderful experiences, amazing friendships, and great successes.  In the pages of the book, one feels the excitement as a very young Dean lands a job with promoter Harry Elliot, and becomes a valued part of his organization.  One feels the deep friendships and camaraderie that made wrestling the special business that it was (I always likened it to a closely knit fraternity — people who genuinely love and value each other, and who have built lifelong friendships).  One feels Dean’s elation at seeing his own creation — Super Star Wrestling — takes off and become a very successful promotion in the state of Washington.  One also feels the rekindled love years later, as a vacation to Hawaii sparks Dean's (and his lovely wife Ruth’s) reunions and get together with the boys and gals of the past, and the renewal of all those great friendships.
  It is also a book about reinventing oneself.  After a series of unfortunate circumstances led to the end of Super Star Wrestling, Dean’s love of music led him to the next phase of his life, as he became the owner of his store, Golden Oldies Records in Seattle, which continues to attract record collectors from all over the world.
  It can also be considered a business textbook of sorts, about how hard work and determination, researching and planning, definitely pays off.  Dean had a vision about a big promotion in his home state of Washington, and when the NWA (one promoter in particular) slammed the door in his face, Dean persevered, and built his own promotion and saw it thrive.
  Dean’s story contains many twists and turns, such as how, many years after their business relationship ended, Dean and Harry Elliot became reunited in a rather unique manner, and the aforementioned spark that led to the many reunions Dean and Ruth hosted and have been a part of as well.
  I would be remiss if I don’t mention the circumstance of the title of the book.  I won’t give it away, but the "pig farmer" incident is laugh-out-loud funny, and an example of how some things just can’t be planned, they just happen, and those moments can be pure gold.
  In all, Dean’s book is is a splendid piece of history for our sport’s beloved past, and one which I highly recommend.

Alfred Ticineto


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