While professional wrestling is often characterized as a goofy, campy, and zany pastime, there was nothing humorous about what one WWE personality discovered during a recent road trip.
The world of pro wrestling is often a misunderstood one. While these athletic men and women are certainly following a script, there’s nothing fake about some of the athletic feats that they accomplish while within the confines of the squared circle. The bumps, bruises, and blood are often all too real, with many of these dream-chasers putting themselves through hell and back in order to fulfill their lifelong goals.
There are dangers, certainly. Wrestlers don’t often grow old, and those who pass the average retirement mark for ordinary Americans are often shells of their former selves, rattled by concussions and permanently hunched over from years of taking bumps to the back.
For many in the industry, the idea of renting a vehicle may be the least dangerous bit of their day. These cars are meticulously cared for, cleaned, and inspected before every customer.
“Shelton Benjamin, 42, posted a photo to Twitter showing what looks like a Ruger LC9 9mm handgun inside a black bag with an unloaded magazine and tagged the company.
“’Thank you @Budget (LIT) for your great service of putting my reputation, freedom and quite possibly my life in jeopardy I’ve unknowingly been driving your car around the last 4 days with a F’N LOADED GUN in the Glove compartment,’ said Benjamin.
“The company fired back at the SmackDown wrestler and said they were both sorry for the ‘unfortunate situation’ and that they have turned the matter over to local police.
“Benjamin, a South Carolina native who attended the University of Minnesota on a wrestling scholarship, has been wrestling professionally in the U.S. and Japan since 2000. He attended SmackDown Live earlier this week in Kansas City, Missouri.”
Benjamin’s reaction to Budget’s massive oversight is a valid one. Who knows where this gun came from, and, given the carelessness with which it was left behind, there is no telling what type of gun owner is ultimately responsible for the weapon.
Furthermore, were Benjamin to have been pulled over in the vehicle with no knowledge of the loaded weapon, his journey to the top of the wrestling world may have been stunted or cut short completely.