Some of you may have seen the movie Nacho Libre, in which Jack Black wears a colourful mask and attempts to be a wrestler. In Mexico, this specific type of wrestling, called Lucha Libre, is a popular sport. It is a great honour to be one of the wrestlers who compete in the wrestling events that take place in Arena Mexico in Mexico City every Wednesday and Friday night. It reminds me of WWE – the wrestling on TV in South Africa. Dirk took this picture with his phone (no cameras are allowed inside the arena):
The wrestlers each have their own character and certain trademark moves. We went to watch a Lucha Libre show with a couchsurfing group last Friday. It is an activity that you have to do when you are in Mexico; for me, one night of watching wrestling was enough. One wrestler wore long white cowboy boots and acted like a caveman. Another wrestler wore blue shorts and had a trademark flying move. Everything is very dramatic and the wrestlers act very aggressive and angry. The referee even got punched in the face!
The masks play a very important part in the show. All the masked wrestlers are anonymous, apparently not even the police know the identities of the wrestlers, that is, until another wrestler removes his opponent’s mask. We witnessed a mask-removal incident. It seems to be the most humiliating deed one wrestler can do to another wrestler. The poor unmasked wrestler laid on the floor, covering his head. His manager walked him out of the arena with a towel covering his face. Lucha Libre masks and cloaks are sold at markets. I think the cloaks for kiddies are especially cute: