AJ Lee Discusses Miss Elizabeth, Daniel Bryan, Getting In The Business, Doing Playboy & More
|By Jay Calderon | August 14, 2012 | Comments|
On growing up a wrestling fan and idolizing Miss Elizabeth: "It was more of a family interest when I was really young. We would watch Hogan and 'Macho Man'. I've said it before, Miss Elizabeth is my first idol ever. ... It's funny, but for a new generation, [Daniel Bryan and I], what we brought to the table (was the Miss Elizabeth/Randy Savage dynamic) but it kind of works because it's also so completely different. But, I was definitely a huge, huge fan of hers. And Jake 'The Snake' and Roddy Piper. Those are my earliest memories.
"Going into high school, I was a really big fan of Molly and Trish and Lita and Stephanie. So, I've been watching for a really long time and looking up to the women more specifically, dreaming of being them and me mixing the best of them and adding a bit of me and seeing what we could come up with."
On how and when she decided to wanted to get into wrestling: "Me and my brother watched when I was about 11 or 12 and he went to the army. So, I would watch all the episodes and for some reason, I really thought he would want a run down. So, I would write him run downs and send them to him when he was in the army. 'This is what happened on Smackdown! and here's a match.' So, it was our one thing that connected us when he was in the army.
"So, for some reason, I was writing this stuff down in my room and I remember my mom walking by and I said, 'Hey, I'm going to be a wrestler when I grow up!' I decided it right there, I knew it. She was like, 'OK,' and just kept walking. [Laughs.] I don't think people believed me. They kind of thought it was a faze that they thought I would grow out of and they'd make me be a girl one day. But, I was such a tomboy for so long and it just never changed and I never grew out of it. So, I started when I was 18."
On what moment stands out as her "made it" moment: "I think just getting signed would have been enough to me. Really, just being a part of the company, being anything. I still have the first envelope they sent me, the first mail because I keep everything. Just seeing 'WWE' and it's coming in my mail box. I'm just such a fan, you know. I think just getting signed would have been the most amazing thing in the world to me.
"But, everything that's happened so far, already having a WrestleMania moment. That's mind-boggling, I don't even understand it. Hopefully, one of these days, I can sit down and kind of drink it all in. But, it's been kind of go, go, go, for the last year and a half. So, it's still very surreal and I kind of don't believe it still. I'm waiting to wake up. [Laughs.]
On the day she was signed to WWE: "I took the not-very-traditional route and saved up a lot of money and paid to try out. There's this yearly camp where anyone from the independents can just pay to try out. [Derren Young and I] were in the same one. There were 70 guys and four girls and they were all models. I didn't think I had a chance. It was a five day camp and I had to save up all the money I had for months and I actually got signed at the camp. They announced it there at the camp and I literally fell to the floor crying. It was the just moment of my life at that point. That was insane. That was one of the best days of my life, for sure."
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