Mick Foley spoke with Sports Illustrated’s Extra Mustard section on a number of topics in and outside of pro wrestling. Here are some of the highlights:

Going from Cactus Jack to Santa:

“Cactus Jack required me to be tougher and meaner. The tough part for me was to be more aggressive because that wasn’t my natural manner, but the red Santa suit allows me to be kinder and wiser. I was so caught up in the moment that I believed I was Cactus Jack when I was out there, and that is how I feel now in the Santa suit. Christmas brings out the best in people. I know there are those who think it’s overly commercialized, but all I see in Santa Claus is the ability to bring joy to people. When I think of Christmas, I think of joy.”

His latest book (Saint Mick: My Journey from Hardcore Legend to Santa’s Jolly Elf) and getting help from Stephanie McMahon:

“It’s extremely personal, and I originally planned on self-publishing for 100 or 200 people, but the two people who changed my mind were my publisher/editor/publicist Jason Pinter and Stephanie McMahon. Stephanie was my weekly sounding board in WWE. When it came time to select someone to write the foreword for the book, I told Stephanie that she wasn’t just my first choice, she was my only choice. Even before I decided to publish, Stephanie grew to really take an interest in it. She did a remarkable job with the foreword, considering the amount of time and effort she put into it, while I wrote my foreword for Diamond Dallas Page in 90 minutes while watching TV.”

How he made up for missing Christmas day:

“My oldest son was born in February of ’91 and I started working for WCW in September of ’91. I was on the road almost constantly for WCW. We even worked Christmas night. I was away a lot, but I found the way that we could maximize that Christmas season was to build it up for months. We’ve gone to Santa’s Village in New Hampshire every year since 1996. Since I was always on the road with wrestling, we built the Christmas season up for months. I remember when my daughter Noelle was young, I’d put Al Snow on the phone with her, and Al would ask her where she was going in a few months. Noelle would answer, ‘Santa’s Viwwage.’ Maybe I overdid it, but my children still gravitate to that place, they have so many great memories of it.”

Source: Sports Illustrated