The first entry to my new "JcM Experiences" blog. Wanted to make something separate from my ranting and inspiring words blog. Seperate from my personal blog, this one this will have game reviews, and storys about events I will be attended, so you can put a story behind the pictures! But now that thats out of the way, here we go!
Ok, so the first event story I have for you is about a surprise event for the Million Dollar Man Ted Dibiase, which took place in a small church in Paramas, NJ. It was a private event, that I was lucky enough to be invited to, thanks to this great agent friend of mine.
The guest of honor, Mr. Dibiase though he was just coming there to talk on that cloudy night, but the weather represented the total opposite of Mr. Dibiase was walking into! A surprise event honoring himself!
It was actually a taping for one of the last parts of a documentary that has been filming for two years, following the life (and rebirth) of the man we grew up watching, Ted Dibiase, the "Million Dollar Man". A guy who watched wrestle such men as Hulk Hogan, Bret "The Hitman" Hart, and many other great wrestling heroes of the past two decades. If you did not know, Ted is a pastor now. He thought he was coming there to just to do a speech, but when he arrived he was met by some of his closest friends. One by one they came in to say something about Ted, the WWE hall of famer. Thanking him for all that he has done for them and such. Ted was also presented with an award, honoring him, and all he has given in the past 15 years, since he has turned his life around, and into the man he wants to be. I'm not sure I remember the exact name of the award though, unfortunately.
When I arrived I saw Sean Watlman! (AKA Xpac, 1-2-3- Kid, Syxx, Syxpac...shall I continue? lol) and Virgil! I was like AHHh! SO excited, as these are guys they inspired me to go through many of my own tables, and couches at home, when I was a teenager! But I kept my composure and acted cool... haha. But really though, this was a special honorary event, not a autograph signing, so I wanted to have the utmost respect that night. Xpac eventually asked me if I had a lighter for a cigarette. I SUPPOSEDLY thought I had one in my car, but I guess I didn't have the right thing? I thought you just shove it in the electric thing (can you tell I don't smoke?) But I guess not. He then actually got in my car and tried to use his own lighter once again. He didn't want to light his cigarette in front of the church and be disrespectful. Hell, I didn't mind. Xpac WAS IN MY CAR! ha! ;D. So yes, whoever sits in the passenger seat of my car may know that XPAC was in that seat! ;D
He's a great guy, and it was very cool to be able to hang out with not only him, but so many heroes of mine, and that me, friends and family were entertained by when I was a chibi.
Couple of other people then started to show up. Saw a beaauutiful woman walking down the street, trying to hold her dress down from the wind that was gusting from the not so pleassant weather. As this woman got closer, it turned out to be DAWN MARIE! I was like AHhhhhh! But again, tried to keep my composure. haha. She actually said "hi" to us, and I was like "Sup". hahaha, no I didn't say that, but I played it KOOL. ;D
Later on Greg the Hammer Valentine arrived, and George the animal steel! We all were waiting outside, and about an hour and a half before, we were all getting ready to walk to red carpet, as this was a shooting for a dvd. The big stars went first, and me and my buddy Dymetre wound up being the first of the "regular people" to walk the carpet, and say something to the camera for the dvd. We just happend to be standing in the right spot when the line formed, to be first! Naturally, being the big personality that I am, I hammed it up. Hopefully it makes it into the video!! I did my best, so ;D
So we all said alittle something for the man of honor, then proceeded to enter the church, and wait for Mr. Dibiase to arrive. Ted arrived alittle late, as he was waited for his beloved wife to arrive at the airport. She was running behind because she had just had had surgery, but wouldn't miss Ted's big surprise for nothing! All in all, Mrs. Dibiase was SUCH a trooper though, that some how, they weren't even that late!
Ted, being a pastor now, thought he was just coming to speak at a local church in Paramus NJ, but he soon found out that that wasn't all he was going to be doing, and that this wasn't going to just be an ordinary night for him!
Before the surprises, Ted did actually speak to us in the church that day. He conveyed the story of his life to us. He told of how he was a young boy, and was raised by his mother and his step father. He loved his step father dearly. The name Dibiase was even that of his step fathers. His step father was a wrestler actually, but that was the one thing that Ted wasn't going to take after his step father. Ted told us that his dreams were to go on to college, and eventually play PRO Football! Who would have though? Still a sport ofcorse, but can you imagine a world, a WWF/WWE WITHOUT the "Million Dollar Man"! Or even someone else playing him?!?!
IT would certainly would be a different world for sure but.... fortunately for us things turned out different. But what we don't know, was not too fortunate for Ted.... for a while atleast.
Ted went on to tell us that his stepfather actually died in a wrestling ring when he was about 15.... from a heart attack. After this unfortunate turn of events, Ted and his mother were forced to move to a small town somewhere (I forget the name....) and went to live with his mother's parents. Ted couldn't have been further from his dreams, as he would express what he wanted to do to his new friends int the small town, but they told him "Look around you Ted, your in one of the smallest towns in the country. Your not going anywhere". Ted said that that town only has four traffic lights, and then went on to say "It STILL only has four traffic lights!" lol.
Ted said though that he never went to hang out with the "cool" croud though. As he expressed that the only thing to do in that small town was to hang out and smoke a "doobie". He chose rather to get involved with his local church. This is the beginnings of what lead him to be the man that he is today, and inevitably save him!
Even though he didn't get involved with drugs, things seemed down for Ted, he himself expressed. He said one night he went back to his step father's grave, and cried out to god. Asked him to give him t he strength and power to go on to college, and fulfill his dreams dreams to play football.
Ted said that god actually granted him the power do go onto college. He expressed though, in college is when he first great failure came about. He said that when he was in college, he was already married at the age of 20, and also had a child. He was actually doing good, until his junior year about. He said that he had stopped caring. Thought he was a big shot, and that lead him down a very dark road. He soon found himself divorced... only able to see his child on weekends and holidays.
He had failed.....
He went back to god he says, and asked him for forgiveness.
He soon found himself in a profession that his stepfather was in. Wrestling.
Not too long after, he had found himself at Vince McMan's door step, and headed up to the TOP of titan tower. This is where Vince McMan proposed to role of the "Million Dollar Man" to Ted. Surprisingly (or not so surprisingly) Vince told Ted that the "Million Dollar Man" is the character that Vince himself would be if he was infact a WWE (WWF at the time) superstar.
This is something I didn't know: Back then we all know that wrestling was argued to be real. In other words, there were two wrestlers fighting in a ring, and there wasn't set finish, and whoever won was the guy who beat up his opponent "for real". In light of this fact, Vince had Ted riding around in limo's and even giving him money to have him pick up the tab for for a WHOLE restuarant, and let everyone know that he was "a millionaire" and to let them know his name. So when they turned on the TV, people would remember that guy they saw in the restuarant or where ever, and actually believe that the "Million Dollar Man" was "real". Thats great!
They even had him offer children $500 if one of them in the group could shoot and score a basketball. Ted proceeded to kick the ball away from the kid! After a few minutes of the kid not being able to get the ball in! To sell that he was really rich, and that he was REALLY a jerk. He said to the kid "IF you can't do the job, you don't get paid!!". Mind you, the kid was about 7 years old! So in turn, it was even BETTER when you saw Hulk Hogan beat the crap out of him on TV! lol. There was a tern for doing things like that, that Virgil mentioned, but I forgot what it was, in the midst of all the excitement.
Ted would be asked to stop speaking inbetween his surprised guests entering the church, to congradulate him, and say a few words. Along with Sean Waltman (Xpac/1-2-3 Kind), Virgil, and Dawn Marie, and Greg "The Hammer" Valentine, Ted was also surprised by his very close friend who is also a pastor, and a couple of independent wrestlers that he is close with and helped morally through the years.
Ted kept coming back up though, and continuing his story. He told about how he had had his second great failure. One that was so great, it would be his last.
Ted had remarried before he entered WWF, to a christian woman. He told us how throughout the years, he kept his faith and god, and explained the difference though from being "really religious" and actually having a relationship with god. Well, in his beginnings in WWF though 1992, he claimed that he was just being "really religious" and just going through the motions of practicing God in his life. He said that while he was on the top of the world, rich and famous as the "million Dollar Man", not "having a relationship" with god, lead him down the darkest road he had ever faced, while at the top of fame and fortune.
He said that god had given him a second chance, and gave him everything his heart desired once more. in 1992 Ted had been again using some drugs (which he says "he was never addicted to, thank god") and had commited adultery on his second wife.
At this time, Ted had had two more kids with his second wife. He again faced a situation where he would be alone, and be seeing his children once again, only on weekends. He told that he had lost a woman that stuck with him through his whole WWF career, it being a hard life, and a woman who had taken in his first son, from his first marriage, as her own.
His wife found out about what he had done. He had lost everything....
His wife told him not to come home, because he is not welcome.
He says that he went crying on his knees to his close pastor friend, who had stuck with him throughout everything. At this point it was when Ted decided to "finally grow up".
He says that "Some people never stop being a teenager" and added "it took me 38 years to do that", meaning that he was 38 by the time he realized, and in the hardest way possible, that it was time to be a man.
He says he went in front of 15,000 kids at a holy gathering. Kids who all recognized his face, and his blond hair. That night they met a different "Million Dollar Man" though, as Ted went up in front of the alter, in efforts to absolve himself from his sins, and admitted to everything he had done. He had dropped to his knees... crying, in front of 15,000 kids.
He told an amazing story! And some of the sentences he spoke were SO intelligent, and inspiring. I believe that he went through such hell, because he was meant to be the great speaker, and inspiration that he is today, in order to help SO many people who have lost themselves.
In the end, his wife, furious, had though said "I made a vow to you, and God, and out of obedience for my god, I forgive you". Ted explained that for two years after the incident, that it was "hell on Earth" between him and his wife. But eventually, the pain had passed.
Ted had described, that we all have a whole inside of us. Some people think by becoming rich and famous, that they can fill that whole, but that whole NEVEr gets filled without god. He went on to say that you may think the money will fill the whole... then you'll want alittle more. You think that the women will fill the whole, but then you will want alittle more. You'll want alittle more, until you start doing drugs, and you'll want alittle more of that as well. He tried to make the point of - when will you reallize, that alittle of all these material things will never be enough? Unfortunately for some it is too late, and thats why he does what he does.
Ted Dibiase's main motive today, is to fill yourself with the spiritual, or else you will never be a whole person, and you will never be a man. And that if you don't, you will always want and want, because you think the next thing, and the next thing will fill you, but it won't. He uses himself as an example.
Ted was so passion during his speech, that he was interrupted due to time and schedule, for the next surprise speaker to come in, he told his agent to hold on, and continued to speak ever so passionately. He was given a gift, and you can tell, with his new found happiness, that he is just as passionate everytime he gives a speech. No matter where he is, or how many time he does it. He is def the man for the job, and like I said, I believe he went through everything he did, because a higher power chose him to do something special, and no matter how bad the pain, he needed to be able to see his mission clearly, and he certainly has been rewarded, with a beautiful family, and a bunch of great friends who truly love him.
After his speech, Ted actually gave us a slight prayer service. He asked us to close our eyes. bow our heads, and join him in prayer. With our eyes closed and heads down, he asked us a couple of personal questions, and asked us to raise our hands if we had anger we had been holding on to, and things as such. I certainly raised my hand for two out of 3 of his questions, one being the anger I had been held on too. He prayed for us, and asked that we let go of the hate, and be absolved of our sins. I hadn't been to church in a long time, but I tell you, it felt good. Even better that one of my heroes was giving his heart for me to be happy. It was an AMAZING experience.
He told us that it might be hard to do but to give ourselves to god, and he will help us with everything we needed.
He even told of an amazing story where he was doing something similar somewhere else in his travels, and a young black man came up to him in tears, and hugged him and thanked him. Ted said to him "God bless you young man" and the young black fellow said "No you don't understand, I saw my parents murdered in front of me, and I couldn't let go of that anger until tonight". Ted said that he broke down in tears and embraced the young man.
It was truly an amazing night, and to spend it with all those heroes I grew up watching? UNREAL. I felt really good after that night, and I have Ted to thank for it. I'm sure many people have him to thank. His guest speakers certainly did.
From old to young, Greg the Hammer Valentine, to Xpac, to some young independent wrestlers, where all there to certainly thank Ted for how he has helped them, and turned their not so pleasant lives around.
All in all he is an amazing speaker, but we all know that already, even when he was a "bad guy". He certainly is far from that now. He makes a lot of sense in what he says, and is a great man. I am very happy for Ted, as he seems to have a great family, and it's a beautiful thing that his him and his wife were able to heal from what had happened.
Honestly, even if your not into the church thing, or are not religious, if you get a chance to see Ted speak, at the very least, church or none church related, he has some GREAT things to say, and some great advice.
After we got to take some pictures, and I got to talk to Dawn Marie, Virgil and everyone else for a bit.
All and all it was a great experience, and all the stars were SO great. I got there about 5:45 for the "red carpet" and got out of there at about 11! It didn't get feel like it was that long! I'm glad I got to hear Ted speak, and got to hang with all the people I grew up watching. I wish them all the best and glad that they are doing good.
This event was filmed, and was one of the last parts of a two year documentary based around the "Million Dollar Man" called "Price of Fame", by 815 Films. It is said to be based on the movie "The Wrestler", but a real life version, rather then fiction.
The moral of the story: If you are doing things only for self, you may think being on the top of the world will cure your selfish needs. But the truth is, no matter how big you make it, you will never be satisfied, until you are laid out on the floor, dead from a drug overdose. Family and love are the only things that will help you survive through any situation.
Fulfill your dreams based on putting food on your family's table. Fulfill your dreams based on love. If your only think about yourself, and money you will never find an answer, until it's too late. Until you are dead.
- Joey JcM
View Photos from this event here!: