(Photo: © 2010 World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved)
Monday Night Raw comes to the ARCO Arena on August 9. This will be the last Monday Night Raw before the "Biggest Event of the Summer" the much-anticipated Summer Slam on August 15 that will be held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Monday’s main event at ARCO Arena will feature John Cena and Bret “The Hitman” Hart going up against The Edge and Chris Jericho.
Other WWE Superstars scheduled to appear are Rando Orton, Sheamus, The Miz, Mark Henry, R-Truth, Evan Bourne, Ted Dibiase, John Morrison and many others.
On Thursday I was able to talk to John Morrison about his participation in Monday Night Raw and to find out a little more about this WWE Superstar who has some local ties to Northern California.
The Sacramento Press: I read that you graduated from University of California, Davis. What did you major in, and do you have any friends or family in the Sacramento area?
John Morrison: Yes I graduated from UC Davis with a degree in film and a minor in theology. I had a good time attending Davis. I have friends in Sacramento from my school years. Actually, a few will be coming to the show on Monday. I also have two sisters living in the Bay Area. Some of my school friends will be coming from the Bay Area as well.
SP: How do you feel about your newfound superstar status?
JM: We use WWE Superstar in the vernacular. It’s a lot of fun. This is a fast-paced lifestyle. We do a lot of shows and travel quite a bit. We can go from one night in Boston to Chicago, where I have some family, to Phoenix, New York and many other places. I enjoy the travel, and WWE makes these shows enjoyable for the whole family.
SP: Did you follow wrestling as a child, and if so, who was your favorite?
JM: I used to watch wrestling with my dad. I remember watching a vulcan death nerve hold applied during a match on TV, and I was hooked at that point. Watching with my dad, it was like a family thing that we did together. I remember going with my dad to the Great Western Forum (in Los Angeles) and watching Wrestlemania. That was a lot of fun.
SP: What city do you call home?
JM: Manhattan Beach is my home. I grew up in Palos Verdes and went to high school down there.
SP: So you’re a surfer then?
JM: Yeah. We used to surf over in El Porto. (Palos Verdes and Manhattan Beach are just to the south of El Porto Beach. Porto is considered one of the most popular surf breaks in the Los Angeles area known as South Bay.)
SP: What do you have planned (or in the works) in the near future in WWE and outside WWE? Do you have any TV or movie roles in the works?
JM: I like…to write a lot. I really enjoy that, and sometimes I think I spread myself too thin. I have five screenplays that I’m working on right now. I get excited about one and then jump to another. I’m also involved in a project called Out of Your Mind Fitness, where we look at protein and living a healthy lifestyle. It’s kind of like Bruce Lee, who worked on conditioning both body and mind, using some of the same techniques, mixing yoga, gymnastics and the martial arts.
SP: You have a resemblance to the late to Jim Morrison, so I have to ask how you feel about being compared to him. And in some way, your backgrounds are similar. You both went to the UC system for college and both studied film. You’re both writers and lived around the same sections of L.A. How do you feel about those comparisons?
JM: I think it’s pretty cool. I love many of the lyrics he wrote. I listened to the Doors when I was growing up. I do see some differences between the artists of his era and how they lived. They took the road of enjoying their time in the spotlight, but took it to the extreme. They worked all day and at the same time partied all night. Eventually we lost the artists of old: Jimmy Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison. The ‘new’ sports entertainers of today are more knowledgeable of their bodies and the harms that alcohol, smoke and drugs have. Now we treat the body like an instrument and fine-tune it. We know more about nutrition, and many know about PH balance and the benefits of keeping in shape. Kind of like an orchestra violinist that practices, fine-tunes her instruments, and becomes an established entertainer.
SP: OK, the next question is for all your female followers who may not know. Are you married?
JM: No, I’m not married, but I am in a terrific relationship.
SP: Do you play a musical instrument or sing?
JM: No, I don’t play a musical instrument, and I don’t sing – except maybe do some karaoke.
SP: Do you think one day you’d like to become involved in a reality-type show like “Dancing With the Stars” or something similar? Maybe you can use some of your signature moves on the dance floor?
JM: (Laughing) I think I would do it for fun. I mean, I wouldn’t get involved as if it was something serious. Life is about having fun, so I would try something like that, but for the fun of it.
SP: Describe your experience on the TV show “Are you Smarter than a 5th Grader.”
JM: I am not smarter than a 5th grader. Did you catch that episode? Well, I was playing for charity, and I answered all the questions right, and at that point I had won $25,000 for my charity. Then came the bonus question. If I answered that right, I would get 10 times as much as I had up to that point. Jeff Foxworthy was trying to talk me out of it. Since it was an earth science question, I thought I had a chance. The question was, “The last geological period before ours was called the Neogene period. What is the name of the geological period we are in right now?” Do you know the answer? (I had no clue). I answered Miocene, and I got it wrong! I couldn’t believe it. Can you tell that I’m still a little bitter about that? I was playing for the Make a Wish Foundation. I became involved because of one of my cousins, Andi Hennigan, and that made my involvement personal.
SP: Is there anything else you’d like to say to the readers or your fans before we close?
JM: Sacramento, come see our show on Monday at ARCO Arena. Bring the whole family. This will be a fun show. It’s the last Monday Night Raw before Summer Slam!
SP: Any words of wisdom?”
JM: Let me close with a favorite William Blake quote: “The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.”
The interview ended at this point. After talking to John, I felt like I had gotten out of a seminar or a workshop. I learned a lot about WWE, and I learned a lot about “The Real Morrison,” who you can follow on Twitter. He has his own MySpace site as well as being featured in various areas of WWE.com. I look forward to seeing the show on Monday night.
Morrison will also be participating in a seven-on-five tag-team match during Summer Slam. He will be on Team WWE along with John Cena, R-Truth, The Great Khali and Bret Hart. They will face off against the Nexus Team, which includes Wade Barrett, David Otunga, Justin Gabriel, Heath Slater, Darren Young, Skip Sheffield and Michael Tarver. On that same card Sheamus will go against Randy Orton in a singles match for the WWE Championship. Another match faces Kane against Rey Mysterio in a singles match for the World Heavyweight Championship. This show will also bring many WWE stories to a climax.
Summer Slam will take place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Morrison also mentioned that WWE is promoting the event with its Summer Slam Axxess fan convention. He and fellow WWE superstars will be at the Nokia Plaza in Los Angeles Aug. 14 and 15 to sign
autographs and chat with their fans.
World Wrestling Entertainment will be at ARCO for Monday Night Raw, and the event will be televised on the USA network (tape delay). Tickets can be purchased at the ARCO box office, online at ticketmaster.com, Ticket Master outlets, or via phone at 1-800-745-3000.
Oh yeah, one last thing. The answer to the question (What is the current geological period?) on “Are you Smarter than a 5th Grader” was the Quaternary Period.
(Photo: © 2010 World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved)