Jake The Snake Roberts is a WWE Hall of Famer who has been through hell and back.
These days, instead of drugs and alcohol, the legendary performer says he gets his high from changing the lives of others who are battling their own demons.
Roberts is open about his descent into depravity, a dark stretch of time that spanned decades and cost him everything. When most had pretty much given up on him, fellow grappler Diamond Dallas Page did not. The founder of DDP Yoga took him from death’s door to salvation.
Roberts and maybe DDP will be appearing during the Shock Pop Comic Con Feb. 13-15 at the Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale. The two are coming off the big premiere of “The Resurrection of Jake The Snake” at the Slamdance Film Festival. Roberts believes this documentary will impact more people than anything he ever did in wrestling, which says a lot considering his body of work.
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“It’s night and day from where I was,” he said. “I did the movie thing and came out a big winner. I’m still sober. Scott Hall’s still sober. I got my health back. I beat cancer. I still have issues I deal with every day. Number one always on the list will be sobriety. That’s my aim, search, conquest and game. I like life now. I love life. I wake up excited and happy. I have dreams again.
“Before I never dreamed, and it was all down, and about how I was going to get high that day and where I was going to get the money from. All that crap. It’s not living. Now I have my grandchildren to look up to me and my children to look up to me again. I want them to be proud of their father and have relationships growing.
“The joy I receive each morning when I wake up where I say, ‘You know what? I remember what I did last night. I remember everything about yesterday. To me, I unlocked the door to living. I realize how bad I was now. Watching the movie is tough for me because I see what I used to be and the way I looked and the way I talked and moved.
“My actions and whole thinking process has changed. Dallas is so positive, and sometimes you want to punch him in the nose. He is just so freakin’ positive. He has taught me so much. I’ll never be able to repay him. How do you repay someone for saving your life? I don’t know.”
The wrestling great wants to pay it forward by helping somebody else. He wants to reach people using himself as the ultimate example. If Jake Roberts can make changes for the better, anyone can.
“Going to Shock Pop is an opportunity for me to smile, shake hands and prove that you can recover,” he said. “Just the fact that I am able to walk and get jobs is proof enough for me that I’m back in mainstream. I’m flying with the fish.”
Roberts doesn’t take any day for granted. Among his greatest moments in recent memory was his emotional induction into the WWE Hall of Fame in New Orleans.
“Wrestling fans are the greatest fans of all,” Roberts said. “They are so forgiving and support you through thick and thin. During the speech, it was pretty funny actually. WWE writes speeches for everybody. Nobody goes out there and says their deal. We had a couple of guys writing this speech and said they would put it up on the screen. I got to the entrance and walked to the stage I wadded up the paper and threw it away. I just went out there and said what I felt.
“Sometimes speaking from the heart is a good thing. It certainly worked for me at that moment. To hold my grandchild up there, he is my buddy and my hero. Here’s a guy who wasn’t supposed to be alive. He came into the world at 1.8 pounds…He had 10 surgeries. He has issues, but he is still fighting.”
Roberts is happy to see the locker room and business in general clean up its act. It’s a healthier environment than the one he experienced.
“The guys today are focused,” he said. “WWE’s wellness program, it tests for everything. They are on the guard. I commend WWE for staying on top of this because back in the day it was about being there and performing. Regardless of the consequences, you must do your job. Your job was to perform. Today if you get a concussion, you have to do all sorts of stuff to get back in it. Now I’m dealing with a concussion problem.
“I figure back in the day I suffered about three or four in a year. You multiply that so many times, that’s a pretty ugly number…There are some days I wake up and my mouth doesn’t work. My brain doesn’t work. I have recall problems. That’s one of the good things about doing this one-man show I’ve started is I’m reminiscing, but also taking care of me.
“I’m making my mind work. I’m writing a book that’s about done and 600 pages. It’s going to impact a lot of people in a positive way. They are going to hear the inside story of and how I worked, how crazy it was and how wonderful it was, too. I’ve done a lot in my 40 years in wrestling. I wouldn’t take a day back. Yeah, I made a lot of mistakes, but I learned from them too.”
After all he has done, at the master of the DDT remains a fan.
“Bray Wyatt is my man,” Roberts said. “He is a freak of nature. I see a lot of me in him. I wish I had an opportunity to work with the guy. Maybe I will. I’m not done yet….I would like to get a hold of Dean Ambrose again. I would love to get a hold of Randy Orton. I could take Randy Orton to another level.
- Meet Jake The Snake Roberts, Lisa Marie Varon (Victoria in WWE, Tara in TNA), Rikishi and a host of other celebs Feb. 13-15 at the Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale. Depending on his health, Diamond Dallas Page may attend, too. DDP is dealing with serious throat issues.
For complete details,
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- Follow Roberts on Twitter @JakeSnakeDDT
and visit www.JakeTheSnakeRoberts.com
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