Where Are They Now? Clarence Mason
As an obnoxious attorney, Clarence Mason represented one of America's most loathed professions. Hailing from Sioux City (get it?), Mason litigated his way in and out of the ring for several years as a fixture on WWE programming.
Mason, better known as Herman Stevens to his family and friends, was no stranger to sports-entertainment upon his entry to WWE in the mid ‘90s. As a child, Herman had always wanted to be a WWE Superstar.
"I was huge wrestling fan growing up," said Stevens. "It was always a dream of mine and it was something I always wanted to do. I always had it in my system."
For Herman, the childhood dream almost didn't happen. With no prior experience in the business, getting a foot in the door was difficult for the aspiring law school student. While in college, Herman unsuccessfully attempted to obtain an internship with WCW. When that didn't work, he turned to a Hall of Fame friend for help.
"When I was in law school, I befriended the Big Cat Ernie Ladd," said Stevens. "He knew what I wanted to do, and he managed to get me a meeting with WWE. I went to New York to meet with Mr. McMahon, and the rest is history."
Having never spent a day in the business, Stevens was in awe as he walked into the arena on his first day as a WWE employee. The men he grew up watching on TV were now his co-workers.
"I remember walking in there and being taken back at what I saw," said Stevens. "I was used to seeing these guys under the bright lights, in front of the camera and in action; I was shell-shocked to see them in an unfamiliar environment."
On camera, Stevens played the role of the obnoxious lawyer. During the early days of his WWE career, he continued to maintain that role in his life outside of wrestling. Herman told WWE.com that sometimes, even a lawyer has to bend the rules.
"When I first started with WWE, I was getting away with murder," said Stevens. "I've been practicing law since October 1993, and I was working for the prosecutor's office when I first started in wrestling. I was taking sick days from my office job so I could make it to the TV tapings. After a while, I think they started to figure it out, so I left to join WWE full-time."
Herman, due to his lack of experience in sports-entertainment, became an instant target of locker room pranksters. The once outspoken legal counsel of The Nation of Domination, Owen Hart and Yokozuna jokingly recalled one night when he had to call a locksmith to the building in order to make it to the ring for his match.
"I was getting ready to throw my suit jacket on when I realized somebody had put a padlock through one of the button holes," remembered Stevens. "Of course, you can't go out to the ring with a padlock hanging off your jacket, so I had to find a way to get it off. I got in contact with a locksmith, brought him to the arena and had him cut the lock right off the jacket. I kept it all as quiet as possible so nobody would know I was angry."
Following a brief run in WCW towards the end of its existence, Stevens hung up the boots (or jacket in his case), headed to South Florida, and returned to his original profession as a practicing attorney. While he enjoyed his time in wrestling, Herman says the experience of helping his fellow man has become his new passion.
"What I did in wrestling was for me; the work I do now is for others," said Herman. "How I perform now directly impacts other people's lives, and that's important to me. If I have a bad day in the courtroom, somebody could go to prison for a very long time. If I have a good day, I can walk my client out of the courtroom myself. It's the greatest reward, being of service to your fellow man."
While the legal veteran is now fully entrenched in his current practice with no plans of turning back, he looks back on his sports-entertainment days with great fondness.
"The whole thing was a blast," said Stevens. "Just being a part of it was a wonderful thing. I don't have any regrets. It was a great time and a great experience. Not many people can say they lived their dream, I can say I lived mine twice."