Hi there, Jake here! This edition of Podcast Recap is Stone Cold’s “Steve Austin’s Unleashed”. He likes to tell some stories of his everyday life and then he gets into a good interview/conversation with some of wrestling’s biggest stars. You can hear the show here.
Steve Austin Unleashed with Rob Van Dam
Stone Cold starts the podcast with a story about how he had one slipper on while cooking breakfast and remembered he had a dentist appointment. He goes into a very detailed story about how his teeth were so dirty, so much stuff flew off into the air. He had so much plaque that he wore down a bit and the dentist had to sharpen the bit again. He said how he was afraid he would get a parking ticket for how long it took to clean his teeth. Then ends the story about how everyone should get their teeth cleaned.
Steve then preludes the interview with how cool Rob Van Dam is and he how he will tell us about a badass match that we have to watch.
Austin asks if Rob wants this to be “Unleashed or Family Friendly”, Rob wants it uncensored.
Rob talks about how life is all about energy and how he was an asshole back in ECW when he was in his 20’s.
Austin says that he can see a correlation with Rob and Shawn Michaels. Van Dam then got into the idea that he has different values and it is taking him away from wrestling.
He brings us back to the 90’s and says that you have to believe that you are the best in the company when you deliver a promo about being the best. He says that you need to be a little crazy to believe you are the best. Stone Cold said that in the moment, he believes everything he is doing. Then when he calms down afterwards and reflects proudly on the angle. Rob agrees and says that “even though it’s a work, you have to believe you’re the best.”
Rob says that he doesn’t want to fight to tell a story anymore. “These kids that do want to fight, don’t know what to fight for.”
Van Dam talks about how after ECW, there was nothing left really. He went to WWE and looked at it as “artistically selling out.” He said “no one asked us (ECW) if ever hit each other, we beat the fuck out of each other. I do these concussion interviews. I remember Balls Mahoney, every night, whacking me with that chair. With the sound going out, and things in slow motion. I didn’t know that would lead to long term damage, obviously.” Rob looked at going to WWE as for the money.
Stone Cold leads to talking about his short stay in ECW and how Paul Heyman taught him how to do promos. Then he asks about maybe ECW going overboard with the violence.
Rob says Sabu was his mentor and he would do anything Sabu would ever say. Sabu on Rob’s first day, pointed out what wrestlers were “the shits.” Rob said the fans loved it, but he looked down on wrestlers that needed weapons every night or needed to bleed. He reiterates that he was an asshole.
They both agree how ECW probably would not have worked outside of Philly. Rob then brings up how they found fans in other states that were like that, but they were just copying Philly fans. Van Dam says everyone in Philly is rude, but they don’t mean anything by it.
Rob brings up how in High School he realized he wanted to be a wrestler, so he joined wrestling. Then his coach wanted him to lose weight, but he didn’t want to because he wanted to get more muscular. So, Rob quit wrestling and joined martial arts.
Then Rob talks about how Taz would talk about how Van Dam was very athletic. Rob never heard or thought of himself being athletic. Van Dam said that he then started upping his moveset because he wanted to show more athleticism.
Van Dam said he was school shopping for pro wrestling and ended up talking to a muscular guy, who ended up introducing him to The Sheik. When Rob went there to train, he got in the ring with Sabu for the first time in an 8×16 ring. They cut the ring in half to put it in the garage. Rob said tuition was about $1,500, Stone Cold’s was around $2,000.
Austin starts talking about how at his school there were 25 guys and they were doing tumbling and back bumps and such. He uses that to transition into a question about how RVD developed his style. Rob said most of it was already there from him showing off on the diving board. Rob then talks about how in his training The Sheik never smartened him up to the business. He didn’t teach them how to take bumps or how to properly do anything. He trained them like it was a real fight. Sheik said that “if he is down and you’re not trying to pin him, then you don’t know what the fuck you are doing.” Rob goes on to say that Sheik would get in the ring on occasion and kick the crap out of them. “He would bite my nose and stare at me, but it would kind of fire me up.” Austin asks if Sheik was scary and Rob said yes.
Rob says it’s hard for him to accept wrestling today, because wrestling to him is about ‘protecting the business’. He realizes that he was apart of the evolution of wrestling. RVD brings up how in All-Japan he would do moonsaults off the guardrail and Stan Hansen would say “let the kid do his shit, and I’ll go in and make it real again.”
Austin talks about his training again. He said the same night of his first match he just learned that the business was a work. Stone Cold had to learn what a high spot was on television. He brings up how he never had good hearing and couldn’t understand a ‘tackle, drop down, hip toss’.
RVD talks about how Sheik and Sabu prepped him. Said you’re not a fan in the locker room. You walk up and introduce yourself then keep to yourself. Rob reiterates how his mindset is very old school.
Rob said he never really got into the storytelling and selling of wrestling until after wrestling in many companies. He said that WWE teaches you to slow it down and stretch it out to make things matter more. He said most times you think that you’re good enough and well rounded enough. Rob said in TNA many people were like that and wouldn’t slow things down. Soon he would just show up to show off.
Talk turns to Randy Savage vs. Ricky Steamboat at Wrestlemania 3. Rob says he was in the Silverdome and he was still a mark at the time. He wasn’t a fan of the work, more of the show.
Rob asks Austin a question and says “the source of every conflict is mismatched values.” Then riffs a bit on how kids and adults and wars are about mismatched values. “That dude is dressed funny but so what.” He never really asks a question, so Austin starts talking about how you respect things after you lose ignorance in why people do things.
RVD brings up that his favorite wrestler was ‘Leaping’ Lanny Poffo. So, his values are more about being different and catching attention. Austin asked if Lanny inspired Rob at all. Van Dam said that things he saw with Blue Blazer and Wild Cat and Lanny is what got him excited about wrestling. He says today, that some of the moves are cool, but he doesn’t understand these weak throws and slaps to the ass for an Irish whip. Austin understands but says a lot of this is a timing issue now and the person running needs more control over themselves.
Rob Van Dam tells a story, “God talks to a platypus and says ‘you’re a mammal, yet you lay eggs, and have these claw looking things. You’re a paradox’ and the platypus looked up and said ‘I’m just being myself, it’s your system that is fucked up.’ and that’s the way I see myself.” He keeps talking and ranting “I see a lot of people as followers, as sheep… I want people to realize their own values and their own priorities… I pay attention to my vibration.” AND “I try to keep my spiritual vibration tuned to the highest frequency as possible.” He talks about stress “it’s like a rock that is obstructing the flow of my chi. I look at the yin and yang like it is rotating like it is a pond, with circular motion of flow, and then you got to take that rock out because it is obstructing that flow, and then boom. You can’t take out all the rocks, that’d be perfection and we are human, we work towards that, I do.”
Austin says that being a nonconformist isn’t like being rebellious. Rob says he tries to blend in and wants to just be content with himself. “Fuck them, do what you want to do.” RVD talks about music “I listen to Reggae because it reminds me of Jamaica and that makes me happy. I also like EDM because it reminds me of Las Vegas and partying.”
Austin talks about how Rob brings up vibrations all the time. Austin then says that he can sense people being negative or a negative person. He asks Rob if he can sense other people’s vibrations. Rob says a lot of people are inspired by his positive outlook. “You exude your vibration, in the tone of your voice, in the way you carry yourself. I don’t just feel your vibration, I feel it interacting with mine.” He says “you can’t feel good and have bad thoughts, or feel bad and have good thoughts.”
Austin asks about the vibe and Rob says “it is a very good vibe, I don’t feel like I have to adjust my vibe very much. We started at the beginning of this saying we don’t know each other well. I knew your character, so your character and um, the energy your character exudes has an energy manipulation, and you use one called intimidation. That is something, when someone is really loud, and they are forcing your focus on them, then that drains people of their energy.” Austin says “that is an anti-authority type setting when I was being fucked. So that was the thing, I wasn’t about me being loud and wanting attention but the system was fucking me and poking me with a stick.” Rob says “but it was about Stone Cold being the boss.” “In real life that is somebody I would never want to be around.”
Austin asks Rob how much he has studied and Van Dam said what changed his life was The Celestine Prophecy. It inclines us to be spiritual. He now tries not to take peoples energy. He likes The Secret and now is really into The Four Agreements. It’s about how you originally are the true you and as a kid you learn to accept facts that are pushed on you. The book he likes now has him trying to reprogram himself. He says he attempts to not assume, to be as good as you can with your word, do your best also.
Austin wants to talk about The Secret because he never read it. Rob says “your vibration you put into the universe brings back things of a similar quality.” Austin says “with that being said, do birds of a feather flock together.” They then talk about how vibrations change every time you run into somebody.
Austin asked when Rob really got into this. RVD said that it’s when he started martial arts and how insignificant all your problems are. “It is just a drop in a spiritual ocean, we are so insignificant, you’re only here for so long.” Rob doesn’t meditate on a daily basis and Rob says he wishes he did. As an adult his life revovles around time and he can’t just do it for five minutes. It’s trying to achieve a notion of nothingness. “In order to get there I have to get rid of every distraction.” He starts pointing out all these noises and all the things he can feel, like the clothes on his back. Then he goes back and forth externally and internally. He doesn’t have the ability to put time into meditation. Austin says “how often do you need to mediatate.” RVD talks about the word ‘need’ and how it is different for every person. You need to keep things in shape ‘physically, mentally and spiritually’. RVD then talks about how he had to dumb himself down to be okay with wrestling.
Austin wraps the first half of the show up and tells you to check out RVD vs. Jerry Lynn at Hardcore Heaven.