|WWF Byte This! by E.C. Ostermeyer
This is the WWF Byte This! report for Friday, 11 May 2001, and I'm your recapper, ol' E.C. himself.
On today's show, Droz bewails the perils of involuntary regurgitation, Chyna and Lita get a GOOD going over, and Mick Foley does opera.
Opening credits, with the usual cheapass garage band doing the same riff ten times. On-screen, Lita goes for the "Minimalist Look" in frilly undergarments.
Your hosts are Kevin "Why's-My-Chair-Smell-Like-Howard-Finkel" Kelly, and Dr. Tom "Say-'No!'-to-Pink-Elephants, Say-'Yes'-to-AA" Prichard.
Byte This! producer, "Big Country" has cleaned up the "tubular audio problems that have plagued the broadcast of late. Now, he has to deal with good, old-fashioned signal breakup.
Kelly and Prichard promo the heck out of the upcoming "Judgment Day" PPV. Prichard can't wait to see what happens when Undertaker and Kane have it out with HHH and Steve Austin. "The Undertaker can't wait to get in that ring," he says, "and rip the WWF World Title off Steve Austin's body."
Kevin Kelly kicks off today's interview with Mick Foley by setting up several trivia contests in addition to "Outthink the Fink", with the prize in each case being the being a copy of Foley's new book, "Foley is Good!"
Prichard says that the critics' reviews of the book are uniformly good, and is lavish in his praise.
First up is "Outthink The Fink", where Howard Finkel asks a two-parter question: "In what city and state was the first WWF "In Your House" 1995 PPV broadcast, and, in addition, in what city and state did the winner of the show's grand prize, a house, live in?"
Back to the studio, where Kelly and Prichard are dumbfounded.
"If you get this one," says Prichard, "you deserve this book." (holds up a copy of "Foley is Good."
"You deserve the book and a LIFE!" snickers Kelly. "You've really got to know your wrestling trivia for this one!"
Prichard remembers where the PPV was broadcast from, but not where the grand prizewinner was from. Kelly opines that the house was in Orlando, but that Orlando doesn't ring a bell as to where the winner lived.
Droz is up. "Two words, Droz," says Kelly, "Jersey Devils!"
"Whoo-hoooo!" hollers Droz, as Kelly tells of the NHL Devils' win, and they're moving up to the Eastern Division finals against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Kelly asks Droz if the Hardys and Lita have anything to worry about Eddie Guerrero getting involve in their matches, particularly his taking a Rhyno gore that was meant for Lita. "Is Eddie truly trustworthy in this situation?" asks Kelly.
"Nobody is trustworthy in that situation," says Droz. "Eddie's looking at the bigger picture, and I think he's also looking at Lita as a part of that bigger picture. That's why he took the bullet. I myself would have moved out of the way. That gore of Rhyno's looked a little too painful for my blood."
Kelly moves the topic to Rikishi's "stink-facing" of Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley.
"That was a very entertaining moment for me," says Droz, "to see her stuck in the corner with that big, dimply ass shoved in her face. I mean, I know some guys who used to never wash their gear. If I was Rikishi, I wouldn't wash my gear for a long, long time, just for the stinkface!"
Prichard recalls a "Droz Moment" involving a trashcan and projectile vomiting. Droz thanks Prichard for that unwanted personal anecdote.
Kelly says it's glad to see Rikishi back, to which Droz rejoins that it's god to see the OLD Rikishi back as a face, with his dancing and all, "although Mick Foley needs a lot of work if he's gonna dance with the big guy."
Prichard says that Rikishi's little run-in with the McMahons proved that "you can't buy the big man."
Kelly says that somebody who's probably doing some heavy duty shopping for hair care products is WWF Commissioner William Regal after undertaker dumped his spit cup all over his head. "Y'know, Droz," says Kelly, "I saw that and thought of you!"
"Boy, if that would have happened to me," says Droz, "I would have thrown up all over! It's not a fun sight, or SMELL to have that stuff dripping down your face. I pretty much would have lost it."
Prichard recalls that Regal doesn't have the strongest stomach in the world, either.
Kelly remembers that Debra McMichael-Austin got a real, ummm, "present" from the Undertaker as well.
Droz says that Debra "was walking into a hostile environment anyway, walking in on the Undertaker, who had a message for her to take back to her husband."
Talk shifts to the upcoming WWF Women's Title match between Chyna and Lita. Kelly says that Lita was able to get in some "spankage" of her own on Chyna this past week and Chyna wasn't upset by it.
I think Chyna was entertained by it," says Droz, "she's been looking for a challenge, and for Lita to do that is her way of saying to Chyna, 'Look, I'm not afraid of you, I'm here and I'm not backing down, so let's get it going on 'Judgment Day'."
"Any thoughts on that match, Droz?" asks Prichard.
"Ooooo, ummm. Even with Lita's skill, Chyna's just too strong and too agile," says Droz, "I'd like to see a Lita win to stir things up in the Division, but Chyna's got the edge."
Kelly predicts that the match will be a good one, surprising a lot of fans.
Prichard says that, up to this point, Chyna pretty much outclassed all of her opposition in the WWF Women's Division. Lita, on the other hand, has the skill and the desire to pull an upset here, and Chyna had better take her seriously. Lita wants to prove that she deserves a spot in the WWF, and taking Chyna's Title is the way to accomplish just that.
Kelly says that Lita's training for the match harder than ever, even to the extent of purchasing a Stairmaster and really working out hard on it.
Kelly asks if Droz has the answer to today's "Outthink the Fink" question.
"I don't have a CLUE!" says Droz
Caller Kathy on Line 6 wants to know why there hasn't been any updates by the WWF on the condition of Shawn Michaels.
Kelly says that there's some info about Michaels' condition on the WWF.com site. Kathy says that there's quantitatively more info over at Michaels' own site than just the pittance that WWF.com is doling out. Kelly asks Kathy what Michaels' site told her, getting the response that nobody has the definite return date for Shawn Michaels. Kelly counsels patience, but Kathy's not having any of that. Kathy starts whining, and there's a note of venom creeping into Kelly's voice, but producer "Big Country" pulls the plug before things get out of hand.
Kelly asks Droz what he's getting his mom for Mother's Day. "It's usually a card and flowers," says Droz, "Give 'em a phone call, have dinner, that sort of thing."
Kelly wants to know if there's any truth to the rumor Droz once brought his Mom a fresh kill from the field?
"Probably," says Droz, as Kelly and Prichard are convulsed with laughter. "I wouldn't be surprised if I did just that!"
Droz takes off, as Kelly plugs his column at WWF.com, "Droz' Two Cents."
No winner for the "Outthink the Fink" trivia question, so Kelly loads up another one. "Fink loves it when nobody can answer his questions," he says.
"Mick Foley's WWF debut was on the "WWF Raw" after Wrestlemania XII in 1996. Who was his opponent?"
We segue into a Lugz commercial, followed by a "Pulp Fiction" treatment Mick Foley's homecoming in Uniondale, NY.
On the cell phone is Mick Foley, who has some tales to tell about working the book circuit, hitting the talk shows, notably "Howard Stern."
"After going since 6AM, I hit bottom about an hour ago," says Foley.
"Well, you clearly hit bottom by being on Byte This!" says Kelly.
Foley laughs, then relates that "Foley Is Good" builds upon his earlier work, "Have a Nice Day," but covers in-depth a fifteen-month period, which should appeal to a lot of people. "While I won't put my other book down, " he says, "I do think this book is better organized."
Kelly remarks that, with his successful Christmas book, Foley could be called a prolific writer. Foley laughs, and says he's got three more children's books done and on the way, "...one coming out for Halloween, and the other two later on about the Little Guys who take a trip to VinnieLand, the world's first WWF-themed amusement park (My God! - EC).
Prichard wants to know if Foley's learned to use the computer yet?
"Naw, not yet," laughs Foley, "Ya can't do everything, doc! Writing's hard enough, though I did do something in my teen-age years that helped strengthen and build up endurance my writing hand."
The whole studio cracks up at this.
Foley continues by saying that he has a better mental connection between pen and paper than with a computer, staring at a screen and punching keys.
Mick's cell phone cuts out at this point, which gives Kelly a chance to announce the winner of the second trivia question, Jay on Line 3, who says that Foley's debut opponent was Hardcore Holly.
Trivia question 3 is about Mick becoming the WWF champion on 4 January 1999, but had competed earlier in the evening in a match that he lost. Who was his opponent in that earlier match?
Mick's back on the phone at this point, and says that this could be considered a trick question.
Discussion wanders back to Mick's book-signing session tonight in Stony Brook, NY, where Mick is apparently giving away a guinea pig to someone. Mick says yes, but that the place for critter collection has changed to Ridgewood, NJ on Friday. "I wanted it to be in my old home town, but the exchange of "Chubby Cheeks" (the guinea pig's name) will be in New Jersey on Friday night instead."
Kelly voices the question a lot of fans have been asking, namely, is there any chance that Mick Foley will wrestle again?
One of the worst things I ever had I had happen was to suddenly think, 'Oh my God, what was it I was talking about?' I was trying to get in a cheap plug for my book, and to suddenly lose track like that; it's just terrifying. I had to walk over to JR and ask him what I was talking about."
"Well," says Kelly, "earlier in the night you managed to weave in a plug for Nassau Community College..."
"Did it get the pop?" asks Foley eagerly.
"It did indeed!" says Kelly. "That's called 'knowing your area.'"
Discussion turns to how Test has been very upset at the way he's been portrayed in Foley's new book.
"I hate to say it," says Foley, "but Test has become the new 'Al Snow' for me. Now I want to make it clear that, as regards jokes, I consider Al Snow to be my 'finishing move.' But..."
And Foley disappears again.
Kelly's "Exasperation Factor" indicator is moving into the Red Zone. To cool of, he decides to give half the answer to the "Outthink the Fink" question, that the winner of the house lived in Las Vegas, NV. This leaves the first part of the question (Where the first "In Your House" PPV was held," yet to be solved.
As attempts to get Mick Foley back on the line continue, talk shifts to the Judgment Day PPV Main Event between Steve Austin and the Undertaker. Kelly gets a plug in for The Big Show's appearance on Sunday Night Heat (aired 13 May 2001).
Byte This!'s Mike Pachuda gets a cameo appearance because it's "Loud Shirt Friday", and Mike's got not only a LOUD shirt, but blue slacks as well, the combination of which gives new meaning to the term "boggle."
Mick's back on again, and continues about how just one of Mick's patented jibes that Al Snow would shrug off seemed to hit Test like seventeen "Rock Bottoms." "I told him," says Foley, "that the insults (in Foley's first book) actually helped Al Snow's career, and Test kind of brightened up."
Foley calls the story arc where test is supposed to marry Stephanie "one of the worst I've ever seen. Here's poor Test on the night before he gets married, and what does his father-in-law give him as a wedding present? A match with HHH! Boy, now that's what I want on my wedding day; a fight with one of the top-ranked wrestlers in the world. This causes Test to show up at the wedding, sweating to a degree Richard Nixon couldn't approach! And who was running things backstage, anyway? Here comes this guy to the ring with his OWN entrance music, and not "Here Comes the Groom," and then he was announced as "Test", and not "Andrew Martin," even though Stephanie had been calling him "Andrew" for several weeks! And his best men were who? Christian & Edge!"
"Right," says Kelly, laughing like crazy.
"It's a wonder HHH didn't become a good guy instantly," says Foley, "because in the back, I know the boys were cheering him!"
"Test is never going to live that down," says Kelly.
Foley's special attention paid to Al Snow is discussed next. "Does Al harbor any bitterness toward you?"
"If he ever admitted it," says Foley, "Al Snow enjoys playing his role. He enjoys doing the slow burn, and mouthing 'I HATE YOU!' to me, but deep down I feel that he not only enjoys it, but appreciates the fact that it has helped his career."
Caller Melanie on Line One wants to know about how Mick feels about doing a promotional appearance (with Tazz, of all people!) for the Connecticut Grand Opera!
"I was all for it!" says Foley. "I believe that wrestling can help kids out, and a lot of kids need to be exposed to things like the opera before just writing them off, and decide they hate it. Tazz and I wanted to show the kids that opera isn't that much different from wrestling; they use music and actions to advance their story lines instead of fighting each other..."
"That depends on the genre you're in," says Melanie.
"Hey, yeah," says Foley, "some of them are way bloodier than we could ever get, what with the stabbings and stuff. But the lead actors were friends at the end of it. I was so inspired that I got together with the lead tenor and my notebook, and started composing an opera based on my relationship with Al Snow!"
We hear barely suppressed mirth from Kelly, Prichard, and the whole crew of Byte This!
"Would you lie to hear some of it, Melanie?" asks Foley.
"Sure," says Melanie.
"Now, I don't have that rich tenor voice," says Foley, "but...
"Alll...don't want to be seen with you-u-u-u-u.
I get a better reaction-n-n-n-n, when I'm seen with the Rock-k-k!"
Kelly's slumped in his chair laughing like crazy
Prichard's rocking back and forth and doing the same.
"Al-l-l...why don't you leave me alo-o-o-o-ne
I want to be par-r-r-t, of the 'Rock and Sock Connection!"
"There was more to it as well," says Foley, "really witty stuff that transcends the genre."
"Genre?" asks Kelly.
"Yeah, I...well, I used to pronounce it 'Jenner', like the decathlete-turned -posterboy for bad-cosmetic-surgery."
"This 'Author'-thing has given me credibility, so I get asked to help out, " says Foley. "I describe it in my book about wanting to do more to help out, and here I'm given this opportunity to actually help out during my advanced years."
Melanie thanks one and all, and hopes Foley and everyone will continue to help out promoting the arts.
"Doesn't Melanie run a strip club off Highway 46"?" asks Kelly, which cracks Foley up.
"You can't say that!" says Foley.
"Sure I can!" says Kelly; "It's the arts, isn't it?"
Where's Highway 46?" asks Foley.
"On the way to Ridgewood, NJ, Mick," says Kelly.
Out of the Email Bag, Tom wants to know if there will ever be a day when we see "have a Nice Day" made into a movie?
"I address this in the introduction of my new book, "Foley Is Good," (on sale nationwide)"I did write a screenplay for the book," says Foley, "but after careful evaluation, I determined that my screenplay sucked! Maybe I'll redo it so that it only covers one or two years, because it's WAY too long now! It's sort of like the movie "Tombstone" was just about the Gunfight a the OK Corral, while Costner's "Wyatt Earp" was 3 1/2 hours about Earp's whole life, and nobody wanted to see that."
Kelly has a neat idea for Foley: "Write the worst screenplay ever, but make sure you cast Al in the lead!"
Foley cracks up at this.
"Sure," says Kelly, "Tell him that it's going to be a great movie, because you were so successful with the book that the movie would sell like hotcakes! Al won't be able to resist. You get your money up front for the screenplay. Cast Al in the lead, put it out there on the silver screen, and it BOMBS, leaving Al with major egg on his face!"
Foley gives credit where it's due, in this case for the job Al Snow is doing for the "WWF: Tough Enough" show. "This show is going to make Al Snow a star," says Foley. "Al's one of these guys where either you get him or you don't and unfortunately there are a lot of people who don't, but this should change all that in seconds! I've had fans who ask me when I'm doing another movie, and could Al Snow play my best friend in it? Well, yeah, why not? But only if I get to abuse him a lot!"
"Sounds like a bad remake of the 'Apple Dumpling Gang'," says Kelly. General hilarity ensues.
Adam from out the Email Bag wants to know what Foley thinks of some of the new faces that have showed up in the WWF since his retirement?
Foley says that he's been real impressed with Chris Benoit, but then goes on to say that, of late, the WWF has gotten way too serious. "A lot of the humor is gone over the last several weeks," he says. "They should listen to the fans and leave some of the 'ha-ha' in, if only to counterpoint the real serious wrestlers. Now, it seems like everybody's trying to be a tough guy. If we were a variety show, we'd be sadly lacking in the comedic aspect."
"Maybe that's why they brought you back this week, Mick?" says Prichard.
"Somebody once told me that when the writers want a break, they call me," says Foley, "but comedy is not easy. BAD comedy is easy. I'm pleading with the WWF to find some sort of balance, because right now, it's too serious."
Caller Reggie is on the line, but apparently hangs up before he can ask a question.
Caller Jeremy on Line Two asks if Foley wants to see his son become a wrestler just like his Dad?
"It's up to him," says Foley, "but I'd say, 'look you should go to college first,' because in my experience, the chances of making it in wrestling, and making money at it are very slim. And the chances of him getting beaten up and battered along the way are very high. So I don't feel sorry for broken-down wrestlers. I feel sorry for broken-down wrestlers without any job skills or training. I also encourage kids who want to be a wrestler to get some amateur background. That's becoming more and more important."
Prichard concurs; saying that having a plan for the time after your career is done is very important, and not just for wrestlers, either.
Foley agrees, and says that, because he has retired, he's having the time of his life. Additionally, because he was given the opportunities that he has, he wants to help others out who may be looking for their own lives to be successful as his.
"I had a kid crying because I wouldn't tell him to go be a wrestler without getting an education, or developing the amateur background," says Foley, "I can't stress the importance of those two accomplishments on a young person's life! And then to have the kid leave me his name and phone number like I'm gonna call him back to apologize and give him the name of a good wrestling school. Well, it ain't gonna happen!"
Kevin Gregg from New Jersey wins a copy of Foley's book for knowing the answer to the question about who Foley wrestled, and lost to, earlier on the night he won the WWF World Title: HHH.
"And afterward," says Foley, "I put Shane McMahon into a guillotine cross-body ride, an amateur move that I learned from my old wrestling coach, Jim McGonigle. I threatened to tear Shane's shoulder out of its socket if Vince didn't give me the championship match."
"'Shooter' Foley on Byte This!, fans," says Kelly, who then promo's www.mickfoley.com for the schedule of where Foley will be doing book signings.
Last trivia question is: "How many chair shots did Mick Foley take during his infamous "I Quit" match with the Rock at the 1999 Royal Rumble?"
Do you remember that number, Mick?" asks Kelly.
"Remember 'em?" says Foley, "I can still FEEL some of them!"
Kelly asks Foley in which direction his future writing will take him?
"I'd like to get away from the serious stuff for a while," says Foley, citing how his research into the PTC for the last chapter of his new book was not a lot of fun. "There were countless legal checks, loads of research to verify, plenty of people to read it again and again to find anything that wasn't verifiable. Heck, even Vince McMahon got to read it, and I came down pretty hard on Vince in some parts of the book. A lesser man would want that stuff out of there, but Vince is a big believer in freedom of speech, and he let all that stuff I wrote stay. I think I'm going to try fictional stories, where nobody can complain about lawsuits and hurt feelings. If I can tell real stories about a fictional world, I should be able to tell fictional stories about a real world."
"How about following the trail of a lonesome loser named 'Hal Blow?'" asks Kelly, "a would-be salesman who just can't get it done?"
Foley's laughing fit to bust at this. "Yeah, and he lives in Lima, Iowa, right?"
"Not that we know anybody like that!" snickers Kelly.
Kelly discusses Foley's home life, especially the new baby. "When I was on the road," says Foley, "I didn't get a chance to see my first two kids learn to talk, and make progress every day, but this is making up for that, it's really cool. I think I better do something with my hair, though, because the baby's starting to cry whenever I come into the room. It's either the hair, or because I dress in black, or I've got this stubbly beard growth, or that I don't bathe regularly. I'm not sure which one it would be?"
"Maybe it's a combination of all of them," suggests Kelly helpfully.
Dan from Syracuse, NY emails Foley, writing that he works in the Newhouse School, and has become good friends with Bob Thompson, who knows Foley. "He (Thompson) claims to have had a tremendous impact upon helping you get where you are today, wink, wink. Is this true?"
Foley laughs, and says that Professor Thompson helped enlighten him on television in the 50's, as well as his perception of the way television impacts upon society."
Kelly asks who Foley's favorite authors are.
"Gregory McGuire, although I only read one of his books," says Foley, "Al Snow recommended I read his book called 'Wicked.' It's an alternate tale about the life and times of the Witch of the West, and it tries to cast doubt about who were the bad guys and who weren't. A tremendous book and, since it was Christmas time, I asked my publisher to send me some books with this one included. I spent the night of December 22nd wrapping books with my eyes closed so I couldn't see what I was getting myself. I've gotten into some nonfiction as well. Unlike (Senator Joseph) Lieberman, who talks about our show without watching it. I try to know something about what I write, like the life of Teddy Kennedy. We accept the fact that this country is screwed up. What I want to know is why it got screwed up in the first place, and how to prevent further screw-ups in the future. Now that's a little bit too difficult a subject for a wrestler, but I do enjoy trying my best."
Kelly says that we are seeing a whole new breed of wrestler in the ring these days, an educated, well informed, who bring so much to the table from other walks of life. Foley agrees, saying we learned a lot from those wrestlers in the 80's, who made a lot of money and saved none of it.
"These days," says Foley, "going into the WWF locker room, you'll be more likely to hear wrestlers discussing some book they've read, or their stock options, or protein drinks, rather than how they got hammered in a bar last night."
Caller Nathan on Line One knows the answer to the last trivia question about the number of chair shots Mick Foley received in the "I Quit" match, that being "seven."
Foley thinks it was more like "forty-seven, since the Indiana University study counts replays and B-roll footage as actual shots!"
"Good God, it'd be in the thousands for that event, Mick," says Kelly.
Kelly closes out the show by thanking Foley for stopping by, saying that he could help Mick out with his resume if he ever needed it.
Final trivia question: "On April 13th, 1998, Raw won the Monday Night Wars for the first time in two years. Dude Love interfered in the Main Event. What was the Main Event match on that night?"
Answers can be sent to the firstname.lastname@example.org address.
Winners get a copy of "Foley Is Good!"
"Outthink the Fink's" answer was "Syracuse, NY." The winner was Nick Atavi from New York City.
Latest new website is wwfkurtangle.com, "...and yes," says Kelly, "I think Kurt's wearing his gold medals on the website."
"When we all know they are, in actuality, in a place near and dear to Chris Benoit," says Prichard.
"Ohhh, yes," says Kelly.
See you next week.
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