Mick Foley to appear at Fat Fish BlueWritten by Jeff McGinnis | | firstname.lastname@example.org
In the world of professional wrestling, few figures have the reputation for doing crazy things like Mick Foley. From his hard-hitting performances in Japanese “hardcore” wrestling to some of the most dangerous stunts in the history of World Wrestling Entertainment, Foley was known for putting his body through enormous amounts of punishment in an effort to give fans the best show imaginable.
Nowadays, though, Foley has a new industry he’s jumping into (or off of) with both feet — the world of stand-up comedy. For the past few years, Foley — who is also a New York Times bestselling author — has been taking the stage at comedy clubs around the country. His next stop will be at the Funny Bone at Fat Fish Blue in Perrysburg, at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14.
“It actually started during my wrestling years, when I realized it was just as rewarding to make people laugh as it was to make them cringe or cheer,” Foley said in an interview with Toledo Free Press Star. “A lot of wrestlers use comedy to enhance their characters. After I wrote my book, I realized that if I could make people laugh out loud with the written word, that I could probably do the same with the spoken word. And fast-forward a few years, and that’s where I am.”
Foley’s glib sense of humor and ability on the microphone were two of his biggest assets in wrestling, and he noted that both have been helpful in his new career. “They definitely are valuable tools to have, although you find there’s a big difference between getting people to chuckle … as opposed to really laughing out loud,” Foley said. “I’ve been at it a while, so when I get to the Funny Bone in Toledo, people are likely to really enjoy themselves.”
Foley said he was planning on debuting some new holiday-themed material at the Toledo show — he has well-documented his obsession with the Christmas season for many years — as well as some of the old favorite stories from his wrestling days. Indeed, Foley noted a great deal of similarity between his original career and this new one.
“The most surprising thing is how similar it feels to being on the road wrestling when I was starting my career, and how every show feels like the most important show, the same way it did for the first several years I was involved in wrestling,” he said.
Comic is just one of several hats Foley wears these days. He recently published his fourth children’s book, “A Most Miz-erable Christmas” — a project that Foley had looked forward to for a long time, since his previous work for kids came out nearly eight years ago.
“When I returned to WWE, that was one of the most important things to me was to put another book out, especially to have it work in with WWE’s ‘Be a Star’ anti-bullying campaign. And the WWE superstars who are in the book are thrilled with it. I think it’s a book that parents will enjoy reading to their kids as much as kids will enjoy having it read to them.”
In addition, Foley has also been a semi-regular character on WWE television since his return late last year. “I always enjoy coming back, but I never feel like I’m out of the loop,” he said.
“I also find when I’m doing the comedy shows, I get the same rush that I get when I’m part of the WWE TV show. The crowd is a much smaller scale, but the feeling I get of fulfillment is almost exactly the same.”
Foley also immerses himself in charity work, in particular his advocacy on behalf of the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN).
“I was a huge fan of the singer Tori Amos. And the very first night I got on the Internet by myself, I went over to her website and I saw she had a link to RAINN. I was familiar with the work they did, but I didn’t think it was something that I could go help out with. But the more I read about it, the more I thought that, you know, this is exactly the type of thing that I should be helping out with, since so few men were a part of it.
“WWE does fundraising with Make-A-Wish, they just raised a million dollars for Susan G. Komen breast cancer foundation, so it’s not as big a stretch, working with what are typically thought to be women’s issues. It’s not as big a stretch as people may have thought a few years earlier.”
And for the fans who see him at Fat Fish Blue, Foley has high hopes that everyone will have a great evening of laughs.
“Just speaking from experience, people, they really enjoy themselves,” he said. “For regular comedy-goers, I’m probably not gonna beat their favorites as far as laugh-a-minute comedy goes, but I think that people leave my shows genuinely happy, and feeling like the time and money they invested was time and money well spent.”