The man behind the paint: Inside the bizarre career of Goldust

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October 20, 2013

Dustin Rhodes vs. Vader

WWE.COM: Why’d you go into sports-entertainment despite your dad’s wishes?

GOLDUST: Cody and I were so adamant about getting into the business because we love our dad. We wanted to do what he did and make a name for ourselves like he did. He was, and still is, our hero. So I just think he tried to sway us in a different direction: college, football scholarships and things which Cody and I both had. He had a wrestling scholarship and I had football scholarships. But we didn’t want that. We wanted to be like him.

[Dad] did his job to [set us on a different path] to the best of his ability, but we ultimately chose the entertainment industry and haven’t looked back. Yeah, there are times when I wish I would have gotten a degree, but the past is history and tomorrow’s a mystery.

Right now, though, Dad is like a little kid in a candy store, seeing how both of his boys have excelled. Everything’s very positive for the family, and he’s very positive. We’re all on the same page.

Read Dusty’s reaction to Goldust & Cody’s victory | Learn about WWE’s greatest families

Dustin Rhodes vs. "Stunning" Steve AustinWWE.COM: What was it like getting your start in sports-entertainment as the son of Dusty Rhodes? Did that make it easier or harder?

GOLDUST: My dad did it the right way. I did a little bit of schooling in Dallas, Texas, then I went to where Dad really started in the business in Florida for Eddie Graham’s son – Mike Graham, my trainer and teacher – and Steve Keirn.  He sent me down there with $2,000 cash, my truck loaded up with everything I owned — which wasn’t much — and I got to live with my aunt for a little bit making $20 a night. I was having the time of my life learning my trade.

WWE.COM: How long was it before you took the next step?

GOLDUST: After about two years, Mike Graham called me into his office one day and said, “Dustin, your dad wants you up in NWA.” I didn’t want to go! It was exciting, sure, but I was settled in. I had things going on. I was 19, 20 years old. I didn’t want to go to Atlanta and be on TV. I was scared. Then I go up there, and I had a lot to prove to myself. They named me “The Natural,” because I caught it so quick. It was easy for me to pick up, because it was in my blood. I wanted it, and nothing was going to stop me from having it.

WWE.COM: Was there resentment from other guys in the locker room?

GOLDUST: Stepping in as Dusty’s son, I wasn’t thinking about all that stuff, and I didn’t know what anyone else was thinking. I just did what I was told, did the best I could, and listened and learned and kept my damn mouth shut. Today, you don’t have that with some of these young kids. They like to be the ones to tell veterans, “Well, I’d like to do this and that …” Just shut your mouth and listen. You might learn something, instead of going 1,000 miles an hour. Me, I didn’t pay attention to what people might have been saying about me in the locker room. I listened, focused on making a name for myself and, at that point, really tried to fill my dad’s shoes.  

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