First off, the title of this Sid Vicious biography, Poetry in the Sand, is based on a misheard Beach Boys lyric from California Girls. Author Barry R. Norman writes that the stand-in for “palm trees in the sand” reminded him of the 6’7,” 300-pound Vicious, born Sidney Eudy.
Norman explains that he and Psycho Sid met and became friends during their time at World Championship Wrestling (WCW). Eudy was the in-ring “Ruler of the World” and Norman worked in television production. Norman is a self-described “media junkie” who has worked in print media, movies, music and even promoting the Olympics. He has self-published other books, but this is his first one on professional wrestling. (The Eudy bio is published by Stillwater River Publications).
The book’s foreword gives great detail about the men’s friendship, and how things very recently went wrong (more on that below).
Early on, Eudy poses the question: “Do You Think You Know Me?” Perhaps most wrestling fans do remember his beginning as Lord Humongous, his WCW battles with Sting and Hulk Hogan, and his World Wrestling Federation (WWF), now World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) squash match against the late Big Bully Busick, along with his manager Harvey Wimpleman (Downtown Bruno).
Eudy spends a great deal of the book detailing his childhood, which began on an Air Force Base in Moses Lake, Washington, and more famously for his fans, West Memphis, Arkansas. Although Norman wrote the book, it is entirely in Eudy’s oftentimes hyper-kinetic tempo with a run-on, sometimes rambling and random style reminiscent of Jack Kerouac and Hunter S. Thomson.
Eudy details how his family moved frequently, especially after his parents split. He spent quality time with some of the men his mother dated and had relationships with following the marriage breakup. As a growing teen, Eudy worked long hours on farms under the stifling Arkansas sun, saving money for brand new sports cars that enabled him to rack up DUI’s and other traffic citations in a short period of time.
Eudy explores childhood adventures, along with drug and alcohol use. The 152-page tome is a quick read, but don’t look for much in the way of backstage wrestling stories. He addresses the infamous “Arn Anderson stabbing” incident in less than 100 words and it is 59 pages in before he devotes time to his horrific in-ring leg break in WCW. Eudy notes that his animosity toward WWE Chairman and CEO, Vince McMahon, helped get him through rehab. Norman confirms that Eudy was indeed angry with McMahon, despite not being employed by WWE when the injury occurred.
In Chapter 10, “Throwing Everybody Under the Bus,” Eudy takes a jarring turn from stories to strange declarations. He claims to never have missed a booking due to softball. Anyone who has followed his independent bookings knows that’s an abject fallacy. In fact, he claims to not play softball, but “semi-professional tiddlywinks.” According to Norman, Eudy doesn’t relish in wrestling talk, but would rather talk about his years growing up. You will find that here and you’ll grow to appreciate this somewhat low-key former champion.
The storytelling does takes a less Thompson-esque ride the rest of the way. Eudy is introspective when it comes to faith, religion (his relationship with his loving Aunt Joyce is a highlight of the book), his love of music (snippets of song lyrics that are meaningful to him dot the book), and personal relationships.
There is a strange chapter dedicated to “The Coda Angle” which Eudy believes would be a great wrestling angle, but could only be told by the same team that brought the film The Peanut Butter Falcon to the big screen, or by Norman’s own film contacts. “The Coda Angle” revolves around a gigantic, masked wrestler named Faust who comes out of independent wresting nowhere and resembles a certain, destructive behemoth. Faust’s wheelchair-bound manager dupes McMahon into signing Faust to a contract. After much exposition (much more detailed than any program in WWE history), it’s determined that Faust is, in fact, a super-powered Eudy. A happy, satisfying ending ultimately concludes Eudy’s storied career.
And now for the Eudy and Norman story. According to Norman, a long time ago the two met on the job and bonded over their shared love of softball, and remained “best friends” until recently. In fact, Poetry in the Sand with Eudy emulating Marvel Comics’ Sandman on the front cover, is currently in distribution limbo on some buying platforms. According to Norman, on June 12, 2020, Amazon notified him via email that the book was pulled from its website, noting that they didn’t want to get into the middle of a legal dispute. At press time, a resolution for this dispute is still pending.
In recent months, if not weeks, the friends have had a falling out. Most of it seems to surround a planned visit to Eudy’s home as well as the tone of the book itself. The rift widened from there. Most notably, Eudy and his legal team argue that the book did not have a legal Certificate of Registration, but Norman is quick to provide proof that he has crossed his T’s and dotted his I’s. On his The Vicious Circle Podcast, Eudy has discussed replacing Norman as his biographer, and their now evaporated friendship. Both men have admitted to experiencing bouts of depression, and Norman says the two bonded over their troubles as well as their happier times. Sadly, Norman says Eudy has recently reached out to him; however, it’s his opinion that their friendship is irrevocably broken. (EDITOR’S NOTE: for more on the conflict over the bio, please see Leturgey’s previous SlamWrestling.net story: Bio held up in legal limbo by Sid Vicious.)
SlamWrestling.net did reach out to Eudy through Robert Bellamy, his podcast co-host, to offer Eudy the opportunity to share his side of the story. Bellamy responded via email: “As for the book, once the legal side has wrapped both Sid and myself would be happy to talk about it.”
Nonetheless, thanks to Norman’s seasoned guidance, with Poetry In The Sand we do get to know who Eudy is, and the one-time skyscraper is as complicated as a wrestling fan may surmise. He isn’t as detailed as the writings of Chris Jericho or Mick Foley, but it is a must-read for anyone yearning to know more about Eudy.
Norman’s next project is writing a play about the infamous Montreal Screwjob, written in Shakespearean English.