Mick Foley Keeping Busy In and Out of Wrestling
Foley will be wrestling on this Sunday's TNA Against All Odds pay-per-view where he will square off against Abyss int he first round of the 8 Card Stud Tournament where the winner with earn a future shot at the TNA World Title.
Here in part two of FanHouse's recent conversion with the Hardcore Legend, he discusses the possible move of TNA Impact to Monday nights, his latest projects, and being upset for being called the 'disgrace of the year' by a publication. You can read part one of the conversation by clicking here.
Brian Fritz: There has been a lot of talk lately that TNA would like to move Impact from Thursdays to Mondays on a permanent basis. There's even been some talk that could happen as early as March. Have you heard anything about that?
Mick Foley: No. In all likelihood the fans will know a lot more about my job than I do. (laughs) I am roughly like President Bush only hearing what he wants to hear. I'm far happier that way.
I've heard that on March 1 TNA will be on that Monday night going head-to-head with WWE again and then there will be a permanent move sometime that month where maybe the show won't be live every week but could be live every other week. Do you think TNA is ready to be permanently on Monday nights and going up against WWE on a regular basis?
You know, I think all but the most diehard WWE fans would look at the two rosters and agree that TNA has a much greater depth of talent. That doesn't mean that WWE doesn't have those five or six marquee players that are household names and the WWE brand is known throughout the world. They're kind of like the Kleenex (laughs) of the tissue products. There's so synonymous with wrestling that they are wrestling. When I say Kleenex, a lot of people will be like "what does that mean" but you have to realize Kleenex is a brand name, not a product. Kleenex tissue. WWE wrestling. So our great challenge is to try and get the TNA brand name out there and I think if we're capable of doing that then fans will tune in and will see that greater depth of talent. They'll see guys now doing promos that are not so rigidly constructed and they will see guys really coming into their own as characters and wrestlers.
Originally when you came over to TNA, you signed a short-term deal. What made you decide you wanted to stick around longer?
It was really the atmosphere, the feeling that this is a place that I wanted to stay, that I would be very happy at. That was essentially it. I don't want to be someplace where I'm not being constructive and where I'm not happy. I'm glad to say under both regimes – the former and current one – I feel like I can contribute and be happy in TNA.
Could you ever image that in 2010, not only would you still be wrestling but Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair and Eric Bischoff would be working side-by-side and you would be getting beaten down by Scott Hall, Sean Waltman and Kevin Nash?
(laughs) Yeah! It was in '91 the last time I was in the ring with Scott Hall in the infamous Chamber of Horrors match and certainly I never thought I would be working for Eric Bischoff again. But, hey, I think it's a good situation and I think a guy like Eric realizes he had so many great ideas and that also he made some mistakes along the way. I think he feels highly motivated and that you'll see the best of Eric Bischoff with hopefully the evil Eric who gave away the result of my WWE Championship...
Have you talked with him about that since then?
We talked about it years ago. One of the most fascinating nights of my wrestling career was when I did the Legends Roundtable (airing on WWE 24/7) with Eric and we talked about the Monday night wars. It was really fascinating to get his take on so many things. I realized at that point he was clearly a guy who knew his stuff. But there's always going to be this sense that he was the guy who let me walk away. He may think to this day that he let me go – he didn't – but nobody offered the slightest resistance when I gave my notice (from WCW). So, from a professional standpoint, I'm always going to be more motivated because I going to want everything I do to prove he was wrong about me in 1994.
On the note of seeing Hall and Nash and Waltman back together in TNA, do you think TNA can fall into this trap -- because we've seen it before -- of going back to the well too many times? We've seen the same storylines, group getting back together, recently on Impact there was another version of the Montreal Screwjob.
Right. It's a danger. But I don't think the trap of being there is a bad thing. It's the challenge of not falling into that trap. For example, I have an idea in mind that I think will be tremendous but a very vocal minority will hate because they'll realize It's a retread of an idea that worked a long time ago. There's only so many ways you can get two guys to settle their differences in a wrestling ring. But by necessity we're going to need variations on old themes. That's just a fact.
If TNA Impact does move to Mondays on a permanent basis, what kind of reaction do you think Vince McMahon would have?
I certainly think it would bring out the best in Vince. I think that material I wrote about in my last book (The Hardcore Diaries) and I think I clearly stated that I thought the WWE product suffered when they lost their competition and I think Vince is a guy that strives on competition. He may not outwardly want it but I think it will bring out the best in him and that's ultimately good for everybody -- WWE, TNA, the wrestlers and the fans.
You mentioned the book -- how is your latest one (Countdown to Lockdown) coming along?
Ah, the latest one is coming along really good. I have to work on my afterword this week and then I'm done. If you go to RAINN.org (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network) there's a nice little article up that I'm using all my advance royalties to go to good causes. And there's a little story about that which I'm pretty proud of.
So Countdown to Lockdown is going to be from when you left WWE all the way up to the Lockdown match (April 19, 2009), right?
Yeah, it's similar in feel to the design of The Hardcore Diaries as being an in-depth look at a six week period of time. Then there's other chapters which cover my departure from WWE, my arrival at TNA as well as a host of other subjects some of which deal with wrestling, some of which don't which is why I'm including a handy wrestle meter at the beginning of each chapter so if someone is not partial to...
If they don't care about your personal life and they just care about wrestling they can skip that chapter.
There are those people and then there are like mothers that pick up one of my books on their child's coffee table and wish their wasn't so much wrestling stuff in there. At this point, I think fans realize I have other interests and if they really don't want to read anything but wrestling, they might not want to go my way and save themselves the hassle.
Speaking of other interests outside of wrestling, exactly how did the comedy tour come about?
(laughs) I don't know if it's an actual tour. They're just sporadic dates. I wanted to know if was interested in doing something at The Improv in Los Angeles and it sounded like a lot of fun. I had spoken at colleges so the idea of standing in the front on a stage with a microphone was not new to me. Although when speaking at colleges the emphasis doesn't have to be on humor. I've enjoyed it. I've done it a handful of times. I've learned a lot. One thing I've learned is it's easy to be decent but if you really want to be good at it, it requires a lot of work. Fox example, I will be tagging along with Judah Friedlander from 30 Rock on several dates, just showing up doing surprised, unbilled sets. It's fun. It's another way of telling stories. I enjoy communication with people whether it be through my action in the ring or my stories in the book or stories in a club. I don't hurt so much afterwards.
I know you're a big fan of The Daily Show.
I love The Daily Show!
What was is like being Senor Asskicker on the show last year?
(laughs) Well, you know, it was so flattering because the idea came up in the writers' meeting and the writers starting throwing out names and Jon Stewart said no, I want Mick Foley.
Who did you beat out?
All of the top WWE guys apparently. I guess there were four or five names thrown out there. You know, John Cena, Batista, a couple others and fortunately I had met Jon on a couple of occasions. I have no idea whether he's seen me wrestle but he liked me personally and asked for me.
I saw where recently you were named the 'disgrace of the year' by Newsday. Explain that one.
You know, I usually don't go on Web sites but this was a case where I was looking to see if anyone had put up anything about "Dr. Death" Steve Williams' death. It's really kind of a sad statement to see that with so many so-called experts around on the Internet that there was so little about Doc. This would be like a baseball expert having no knowledge on Cal Ripken Jr. While I was looking around for stuff about Doc I saw this best and worst of the year from Newsday.com. It was a writer I knew who had been in my house doing an interview and so I was surprised to say the least when I found out that I was the disgrace of the year. First of all, I think I had a good year. I think I did anything but coast. I changed gears, maybe too often for some people's likings. And I think the matches I had were pretty good given my limitations. What really bothered me about it was being termed a disgrace in that I don't think anything I've ever done inside or outside wrestling falls under the banner of disgrace. I thought it was especially in poor taste given that Chris Benoit was the disgrace of the decade and it really made me wonder, well did I give Benoit a run for his money?
That's rather harsh.
It's ridiculous. And for a guy who claimed that my humor was horrible to actually have the words "honorable mention" after Chris Benoit's murder of his family is, is either humor in the poorest fashion imaginable or it's just sheer stupidity. To put my name in anything I've ever done inside the ring or out of it in the same category as the murder of a guy's family is reprehensible and unforgivable. I had asked for an apology but the truth is I would have to respect somebody in order for their apology to mean anything and I've got absolutely no respect for that guy. And I even resent that I let anything that he said bother me for even a day or two.