Diamond Dallas Page's Next Act
July 24, 2013 4:48 PM   Subscribe

Former wrestler Diamond Dallas Page has recently emerged as a health guru of sorts, with an exercise routine based on Yoga. He's also reaching out to former wrestlers who are battling addiction problems, Scott Hall and Jake Roberts. via

Jake 'the Snake' Roberts and his post WWE struggles were one of the focal points of Beyond the Mat, with the full film on YouTube.
posted by Ghidorah (17 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
The inescapable question, though, asks how real these improvements are. And it's a question that's greatly complicated by the fact that Page, Hall, and Roberts come from a sport in which artifice and deception are part of the very fabric of day-to-day life. A pro wrestler is an entertainer, yes, but he is also a con man. A wrestler's purpose is to manipulate, dazzle, and deceive. He fulfills this purpose by cultivating a talent for selling a false reality.

It's hard not to watch Hall and Roberts's lives unfold on YouTube and wonder if you are being deceived, or if they themselves have been deceived by Page. Has Page sold them a false promise for the purpose of strengthening his personal brand and selling yoga DVDs? Or has this wrestler-turned-foul-mouthed-Yogi somehow found a way to bring peace to two men who have spent their adult lives battling addictions that have brought them to the brink of death numerous times?

That Deadspin essay is pretty good.
posted by box at 5:28 PM on July 24, 2013

Damn, I missed that one. You wouldn't believe the wall of links that popped up in preview, most of which had nothing to do with this at all. Still, I thought the Deadspin article was pretty amazing. Finding out Beyond the Mat is on YouTube was just a bonus.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:56 PM on July 24, 2013

I kind of hate it when Deadspin actually writes good original content. Makes it much harder to ignore the fact that 95% of that site is something-bait garbage.

Thanks for posting this, though
posted by graphnerd at 6:02 PM on July 24, 2013

While DDP was not a favorite of mine as a wrestler (I always thought his push exceeded his talent), it's really nice to read an article about a retired wrestler doing positive things with his life in his next chapter.

Trivia note - Page's ex-wife Kimberly was the woman whose boob kept popping out of her outfit in the speed dating scene in the 40 Year Old Virgin.
posted by The Gooch at 6:26 PM on July 24, 2013

I saw Jake Roberts in the 1999 documentary "Beyond the Mat". In that film, a promoter said that Roberts told him that he needed to provide Roberts with crack cocaine before the match would go on. Roberts later disappeared and when the filmmaker caught up to him, Roberts had obviously been on a crack binge and was largely incoherent.

I hope he stays clean.
posted by reenum at 6:36 PM on July 24, 2013

Roberts recalls doing promos with an equal fondness. "They used to call me One Take Jake, because I could always film a promo on one take," he tells me. "I was so good that I used to get bored, so I would go to the producers, say, 'Just give me a fucking word, and I'll make it work.'"

He decides to give me a demonstration. He blurts out, "Spaghetti!" before turning away for a brief moment. When he turns back around, his eyes are squinted and his features have hardened.

"Listen up, man," he growls. "You might be the sauce, man. And you might even be the spaghetti, but I"—and here he pauses to make an emphatic gesture toward his crotch—"I am the meatballs."

posted by T.D. Strange at 7:40 PM on July 24, 2013 [5 favorites]

I just learned about "DDP Yoga" a week or so ago. I've recently started some yoga classes and was Googling a bit for more info on yoga classes aimed at men, when I came across this bit about wrestler Chris Jericho having turned to DDP's Yoga after suffering serious back problems. Then I found some of the stuff about him helping Roberts and Hall. Seems like really great work he's doing with these guys.
posted by dnash at 8:54 PM on July 24, 2013

Re the point about this possibly all being a 'work' (i.e. fake) on the part of DDP towards Jake and Scott, or perhaps between all three: the intriguing thing is, it doesn't really matter. When Jake visited Scott back in February, Scott mentioned how, like so many older wrestlers, boredom and lack of direction has been one of his main triggers for drug abuse ever since his days in the limelight. "Just give me something to do!" he said. For guys who have, as the article mentions, made long and successful careers out of pretending, given a task of pretending to be sober may be just as good as what you or I might consider the real thing.

The one thing pro wrestling teaches you is that, on some level, everything in life is a 'work': the very act of remembering who we are from moment to moment involves entering into a complex kayfabe in which we forget certain things and emphasise others in order to do what we need to do. We construct characters of ourselves in order to interact with the characters of others, and we piece together simplistic stories to make sense of it all.

DDP may well just be pretending to be a health guru, Jake Roberts may just be pretending to be a recovered crack addict and Scott Hall may be pretending to be a recovered alcoholic. But these guys' pretenses are arguably no less real to them than the lives of anybody else. In wrestling, if your current gimmick is dying a death, you change your gimmick until you find one that draws, and then you ride it out until the day you need to switch again.

To quote Kurt Vonnegut in Mother Night, we are only what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be. Cultivating the pretense of being a person with reason to live sober may be what the Accountability Crib offers, and I really believe it will turn out to be effective in the long run.
posted by Kandarp Von Bontee at 9:22 PM on July 24, 2013 [10 favorites]

Man, I just came in here to drop hate on DDP but instead got treated to all kinds of existential stuff- in a wrestling thread no less. Metafilter, you never cease to amaze me.
posted by Literaryhero at 9:29 PM on July 24, 2013

The last memory I have of wrestling is of sitting with my dad before his cancer and watching Rowdy and the Iron Sheik and others.

But I swear that DDP seems sincere with his direction and that's something I fervently don't want to be all snarkballs about.
posted by drewbage1847 at 11:34 PM on July 24, 2013

I know a guy who used to be a local promoter in a small wrestling league. He's about forty and in really good shape. He just mentioned that 6 or 7 years ago, the person who convinced to start taking his health seriously was DDP. Loose connection for sure, but it's enough to make me believe DDP's intentions are true.
posted by dogwalker at 3:38 AM on July 25, 2013

Nothing surprises me about DDP anymore after I heard someone say, "He's Richard Simmons, if Richard Simmons had joined a fraternity."
posted by Etrigan at 4:39 AM on July 25, 2013

Knowing nothing about DDP or yoga, I still have to stand in awe of a yoga practitioner/teacher whose logo has a fist punching out through the word "yoga".
posted by Halloween Jack at 5:10 AM on July 25, 2013

pretending to be sober

Fake it till you make it, as they say.
posted by box at 5:56 AM on July 25, 2013

They should get John Stossel to ask him if it's fake.
posted by yerfatma at 6:17 AM on July 25, 2013 [3 favorites]

He should give himself a high five for this.
posted by Ms. Moonlight at 8:58 AM on July 27, 2013 [1 favorite]

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