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  April 17, 1999



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Lessons about life
By BRET "The Hitman" HART -- For The Calgary Sun
  Why! Bret, Why? Oh no! Not again!

 Ever since I quit WCW, I'm hearing that question from fans over and over again. You want answers? I gave you answers. You want more?

 Just remember, I'm explaining, not complaining.

 Why? Because what the WWF did to me is a crying shame. But what WCW didn't do with me is worse.

 Why? Because I'm five-time world champion. In the 15 months I was in WCW, how many world title shots did I get? Nada. How disrespectful is that? When I signed with WCW, they promised me title shots. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

 Why? Because Vince McMahon was right when he said WCW wouldn't know what to do with a Bret Hart if they were lucky enough to have one.

 Why? Because I have thousands of letters from you, my fans, expressing your concern about how WCW wasn't doing anything good for me. I agree with you and I quit. So now the same fans are asking me why I quit!

 What I did in Toronto was a wake up call.

 It's better to burn out than it is to rust. (Neil Young)

 It's better to go out with a BANG ...

 Diamond Dallas Page is world champion and Hogan has a broken leg. As for me, I'm recovering from what Tenay, Schiavone and Heenan call my phony, fake injury. Even Okerlund gave me incredulous looks. I bet they all felt foolish when Bischoff admitted, on Nitro, that my phony, fake injury is real.

 It's been hard to take full advantage of being home because I can't get around that well yet. It turns out that, once again, hockey made the high points of my week. On Tuesday the Calgary Hitmen team stopped by for a much deserved celebration. On Thursday, I got to see Fleury, Sakic and the whole Avalanche team when they were in town for the big game. Fleury gave me a signed jersey and told me no more of the Tie Domi stuff!

 I went down to Electric Ave. with some of the Flames and we ran into my old buddy Sheldon Kennedy, Rocky Thompson, and Phil Housley. Thompson was saying maybe he'll team up with The Hitman sometime. Sheldon came up with the idea that the best way for Rocky to get into wrestling would be to brawl with Stu in the dungeon. It didn't take Rocky long to reply that he's crazy but not that crazy.

 At least being sidelined has given me some time to think. And what I've been thinking about is the old adage that you should choose your battles wisely.

 Some battles just aren't worth the effort.

 While it's true we only live once, where are we all racing to every day? When you die, your 'in basket' won't be empty unless your life is.

 Be. Listen to music, read, do whatever it is that makes you feel good. Do it every day, even for five minutes. That time is yours. Enjoy your coffee, read the paper -- claim that time as your own. No matter what kind of job you have or how important you think you are, if you can't find a few minutes a day for yourself then what's it all for? Or is it that you're so stressed out that you've forgotten how to relax?

 How much energy does it take to hold a grudge and what does it get you? Sticking up for your ideals is one thing, but not when it reaches a point where being right becomes more important than being happy.

 Acknowledging that life isn't fair is too often an excuse for pity instead of compassion. Compassion for others as well as ourselves. Ask yourself, if it was a year from now, would I want to be in the circumstances I'm in now?

 If the answer is no, then move on. Or step back -- to the future. It works for me. Maybe it will work for you.

 Thank you all very much for your letters and e-mails asking about Davey's condition. We're still not sure but it seems to be a staph infection in his spine. I'm inspired that even against such a formidable opponent, Davey's still got that famous Bulldog grit and determination to rise above this. On behalf of my entire family, hartfelt thanks for your concern and compassion.

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