Cody Rhodes: Growing up WCW

Page 3 of 11
August 08, 2013

Fighting for family

My big dad used to go to our neighborhood pool in his trunks and people thought that was the most ridiculous thing ever. Unless they knew he was Dusty Rhodes, and then they liked it. He’d wear the same stuff he wore in the ring. My best friend, to this day, we grew up in the same neighborhood. His family had no connection to sports-entertainment, nor did they want one. They felt we were like The Addams Family.

I got into fights with older kids because everybody would say, “What your dad does is fake.” Around third or fourth grade, my dad told me, “If somebody tells you wrestling is fake, you tell them, ‘No, it’s not.’ If somebody tells you wrestling is fake again, you say, ‘Look, that’s how my dad makes a living and you can have your opinion, but don’t say it again.’ On the third time, you have my permission to punch them in the face.” It was a three-strike rule we had and every time, it went to the third strike. I was constantly getting in these scraps with different kids, defending the entertainment industry.

Then, in the late ’90s, wrestling boomed and I was the center of attention in middle school. I used to not like it, because it was my thing, and my thing was now everybody’s thing. I didn’t understand that was great for business. I just wanted it to be mine.

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