• Brad Ward’s BlogaMania: Part I (The Calm Before the Storm)

    Wrestling superfan Brad Ward takes us on a trip; HIS trip. From Canada to New Orleans, enjoy Brad’s daily antics leading up to Wrestlemania 30 with Brad Ward’s BlogaMania. Take it away, Brad!

    Welcome to my Wrestlemania week blog, where I will detail, star rate and fill your eyes with pictures and sometimes videos of New Orleans. Wrestlemania week is more to me then WWE’s biggest show of the year. It is seeing an entire year of stories and superstars build to one week to see who is going to be the next new star. It is the chance to see friends and colleagues. It is seeing Superstars live and just taking in what you talk about for a year in front of your own eyes.

    This is Wrestlemania week; it’s time to be cool and eat fruit.

    BradHaircut

    Brad’s Wrestlemania Checklist

    So we start off with my Wrestlemania trip preparations. I tend to do a lot of pre-packing as I am a guy who works non stop. At this point, I largely have my trip expenses paid for and here is what was on my list:

    • Plane ticket from Calgary to New Orleans: $450.00
    • Hotel: $300.00
    • Plane ticket from New Orleans to Calgary: $348.00
    • Raw ticket: $60.00
    • Wrestlemania ticket: $250.00
    • Passport: $120.00
    • Insurance: $10.00
    • Captain America shirt: $35.00
    • Phone case: $20.00
    • Bryan shirt: $41.00
    • Warrior shirt: $26.00
    • Shoes: $90.00
    • Socks: $15.00
    • Boxers: $120.00
    • Shirts: $100.00
    • WWE Perform shirt: $25.00
    • Battery: $48.00
    • Fri 6 – 10 Axxess: $60.00
    • Sat 8 – 12 Axxess: $60.00
    • Sat 1 – 5 Axxess: $60.00
    • Sun 8 – 2 Axxess: $60.00
    • WWE Hall Of Fame: $62.00
    • An Evening With Jim Ross: $60.00
    • Foot Cream: $10.00
    • Benadryl: $10.00
    • Apple iPhone Cables: $45.00
    • Shampoo: $4.00
    • Bar Soap: $4.00
    • Deodorant: $4.00
    • Haircut: $20.00
    • Screen Protector Replacement: $5.00

    TOTAL: $2,500.00 CAD (approx.) 

    So that is what typically you are looking at expense wise before food ($400), travel ($150) & spending money ($700).

    SUNDAY: A Burger King breakfast, a haircut and Brad’s last day of work.

    So we start Sunday off with posting 30 Days of Wrestlemania on Fighting Game Nation day 29 featuring Andre the Giant and The Big Show. A tradition of mine before WWE PPVs is a Burger King breakfast (sausage egg ‘n’ cheese, large Fruitopia & small French toast). I usually get this the day of the PPV, but no Burger King is in sight by my hotel in New Orleans.

    The next stop is getting my haircut; I went back and forth how I wanted to get my haircut done. I decided I would go with high and tight – #2 with a #1 fade as it’s easy to manage and it’s a tribute to the legacy of John Cena.

    As I explained previously, I am working until just before I leave from Calgary to New Orleans.  I go to work for the day for 6 hours or so, and in between, I will be watching some of my favourite Wrestlemania matches such as Hogan vs. Andre, Steamboat vs. Savage and Austin vs. Rock. Work concludes and my vacation for Wrestlemania has now begun.

    Sunday nights are one of my favourite nights of television as they have a lot of diverse, interesting shows. My current shows that I am into on Sunday nights are The Walking Dead, Bar Rescue and Total Divas. Total Divas will be one of the last WWE shows I watch before I head to New Orleans, with Raw being the last.

    I have a checklist that I use for my travel essentials that includes stuff like passport, bathroom stuff, all my clothes, e-boarding passes, any tickets, Xbox 360 (and all accessories). So, I will be doing my final pre-packing for the trip to New Orleans.

    BradLuggage

    I will end the night with some WWE 2K14 Universe Mode and The True Story of Wrestlemania documentary on Canadian Netflix.

    MONDAY: WWEShop disappointment, McDonald’s and final preparations.

    We move on to Monday as it is my last prep day before I head to Minnesota to New York City to New Orleans. I get to sleep in for the last time in 8 days. I wake up around 11AM to post 30 Days of Wrestlemania – Day 30 – John Cena vs Hulk Hogan and update the main Wrestlemania xXx post.

    Afterwards I check in for my flight and pay for my luggage fees and start listening some of my favourite Monday morning podcasts. I get ready for the day and the hype starts to build even more. After I am ready, I go check the mail to see if a package from WWEShop has arrived – unfortunately it didn’t arrive, so I have to try to get it in New Orleans at the WWE Superstore.

    BRAD4Selfie

    Heading to the mall is next on the agenda to get something done with my phone. As I use my iPhone quite a bit, my screen protector tends to get a lot of wear and tear so before I head home get a new screen protector professionally applied.

    Before I make it back home, I grab some dinner. I decided to grab some McNuggets, fries and a coke from McDonald’s. I make it home in time for the Raw Pre-Show, as it is all about to begin. Tonight WWE is taping both Raw and Smackdown, so while I am trying to avoid spoilers, I will read them just in case I have to record another video for The Mania Before Wrestlemania for FGN.

    Following Raw I will go to bed because I have to awake at 4AM, leave at 5AM and be at the airport at 6AM. Due to flying outside the country I have to be there two hours before my flight which leaves at 8:15AM for Minnesota to New York City.

    I leave you with what I will be wearing for my flight on route to New York City where I will meet up with some friends and then fly out from New York City to New Orleans the next day at 8AM:

    BRAD3OutfitforNYC

    Star Ratings:

    Burger King breakfast: ★★★★★

    Haircut experience: ★★★★

    Last work day: DUD

    Walking Dead: ★★★★★

    Bar Rescue: ★★★★

    Total Divas: ★★★★★

    Packing: ★★★

    McDonald’s: ★★★★★

    Come back Wednesday as I will have my full review of Raw (with star ratings of each match and segment), feeling about waking up at 4AM, airplane experiences, my return to New York, dinner thoughts, any new Wrestlemania developments and more!

    – Make sure to follow me on Twitter @BradWardFGN for updates throughout Wrestlemania week!