Every athlete needs to think about life after his playing career has ended.
Some guys stick around and get into commentating, coaching, teaching or work behind the scenes in a management capacity. Others completely disappear from their old life and move into a complete opposite line of work.
Mick Foley entertained wrestling crowds for over two decades. First, as the maniacal Cactus Jack in Japan and WCW and then in the WWE as the Mankind, a character Foley claims was inspired by a combination of reading Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein and listening to the music of Tori Amos. Foley played other roles along the way — the loveable ladies man Dude Love and just plain old Mick Foley. His promos were always entertaining and his matches often told a story way beyond the massive bumps and hand socks down the throats of his opponents.
Even before he retired from the squared circle, Foley made his mark outside the wrestling world. He’s a best selling author and has appeared or hosted countless other TV projects. Foley was well prepared for the day he no longer needed to launch himself off 30-foot steel cages. Fans knew Mick Foley would always be in the spotlight but I’m just not sure how many fans imagined that spotlight would point towards a stage on which Foley would try stand-up.
Well, it’s not quite stand-up. Foley made sure to point that out early in our talk.
“Let’s dispel the term ‘stand-up’,” Foley begins, “because that automatically conjures up images of a guy in a bow tie standing on stage telling one-liners.”
Foley’s show is humorous but if you’re looking for Louis CK type confessionals or Gabriel Iglesias-esqe voices you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. Foley is a storyteller — think NPR but with tales of chair shots gone wrong.
In this special bonus episode of the Guyism Podcast, I talked to Mick about his second (or tenth) career traveling the roads making people laugh. We also discussed his comedic influences, his feelings on fireworks, his hope to get heckled just once (because it would be an awful idea) and the differences between the squared circle and the comedy stage.
Mick Foley kicked off the second leg of his Hardcore Legend tour this week. For a complete listing of shows, check out Mick’s official website.