Inside Pulse 12

Mick Foley Reminisces About Career, Health Schedule, Friendship with Bill Apter, Whether He Has Regrets

Mick Foley Wrestlezone Radio recently interviewed WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley. Below are some highlights.

Mick Foley on his friendship with Bill Apter: “It was really a big deal for a guy… I broke in in ’85. My story has been covered a lot about being kind of an unlikely guy to outperform expectations. It was really a big deal when I met Bill I think in ’88. Bill took a liking to me well before I went to Memphis. That was a really good guy to know. Even after I had my first son I would call up Bill and I’d be like, “Hey, can you do Cookie Monster for my kids? They aren’t going to sleep. Can you pretend to be the Cookie Monster?” It’s kind of kind cool. Bill is really… safe to say… he’s pretty iconic for wrestlers of my generation.”

Foley on his health affecting his travel schedule: “I took a lot of pride in being a road warrior. Not painting my face and wearing shoulder pads but being like a really good wheelman. Being kind of indefatigable when it came to driving. In the last couple of years the roads really started wearing me out. I remember when I talked to JR. He came and it was part of the Q&A for the show I did in Oklahoma City. He was asking me about the dates I was doing. It was thirteen cities and thirteen days. Meet and greet after every one of them… for everybody. It was 85 hours of driving in thirteen days. JR was asking me about it and I’m like, “I like it. I like that. I like being in the car. When I put MapQuest in from Daytona Beach to Victoria, TX it comes out at 23 hours that sounded completely logical to me.” It’s just in the last couple of years I’ve been like, “Man, I’m getting worn out.” I had the good fortune to fill in for “Nature Boy” Ric Flair when he went to the UK so I kind of picked up not only the date but also the Flair trappings. You know? So I’ve got the limo and the hotel and it was great. It also meant that I went from doing an independence appearance at an independent show near Canada. Which is about a six and a half hour away. Drive back thirteen hours. Then to Nashville. Back to New York. Then fly out of JFK to Dublin. Drive across the country. When I say drive across the country that’s about a three and a half hour drive to Galway. By the time I got to Galway I was already reeling. I was sick. I’m like, “I can’t do this anymore.” It got to the point where I actually looked out the window, opened up the window. Very rare that I sleep on a plane. That’s another problem. I’m just a notoriously bad sleeper. I looked out the window and I said, “Man, it really is an Emerald Isle.” The guy next to me goes, “Son, I don’t know where you think you are but that’s Nashville.” The days are running in to each other and that’s the main thing.”

Foley on if he regrets any of the crazy bumps he took in his career: “It’s a tough question to answer. It reminds me of what I said to Punk when I saw him all wrapped up after a house show. I said, “Man, you don’t have to go like that every night at a house show.” He said, “If I didn’t then I wouldn’t be here.” It was that work ethic that got him there. It’s easy to look back and say, “Man, I shouldn’t have done that.” Or, “I wouldn’t have done that.” You pretty much wrestled every match like it was the most important match of your life when you’re on the independents. It didn’t matter if there were twenty six people in Polka, WV when I wrestled Shane Douglas. It was going to be the best match we could possibly do. That work ethic got me and the word around. That opened doors for me everywhere I went. One thing I regret is that when my knees started really hurting and I still felt like I needed to put on a real physical show. That’s… I took too many shots to the head. We didn’t know the science at the time. I kind of bought in to the theory that I was indestructible. That didn’t turn out to be the case. I certainly should have recognized symptoms from concussions. Especially in those later years. Especially when I wrote down the words. When I did Countdown to Lockdown. When I wrote down the words, “It takes less and less to hurt me more and more for longer and longer.” As soon as I wrote them I said, “Alright. I’m done.” I had admitted that I can’t do what I used to. It takes longer. Within another year there was that definite research out there that talked about how dangerous that was. Once you start getting hurt more often with less. It used to be that when I got hurt I could look back at the video and say, “Ok, that’s where it happened. That’s where it happened.” Then on that one night where I got my bell rung three times I was like, “Ok. Oh, they must have missed the camera angle. It didn’t look as bad as it felt.” I should have realized, “Your day is done.” I think every wrestler is guilty of maybe staying a little too long. I definitely stayed probably two years longer than I should have. I regret those two years. I’ve said at times, “Yeah, I shouldn’t have been dropping elbows in front of 150 people on spot shows.” But thats’s kind of… if you had taken that out and you took out every logical step. The truth is, and I think I’ve written this before, if you catered only to people who weighed in with accurate risk reward ratios and analysis you wouldn’t have a business. It’s not a business that draws logical people thinking about odds of success.”

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