So listen-up friends, this interview (from 2010) between Mike Tyson and Michael Kay is MUST WATCH TV. Why you may ask? Because it is ruthlessly honest – and funny! And every man in the audience is engrossed and captivated because Mike speaks the truth.
But Wallace Matthews from ESPN – and Mike Tyson’s actual words – say it better than I can:
Unlike so many of the prepackaged, overprocessed and mega-rehearsed professional athletes who are churned out today, Mike Tyson remains that rarest of all commodities. Instead of the human being sold as superhero, Tyson is the superhero who is selling himself as a human being.
“Sometimes I’m a dreadful, disgusting human being. I have a lot of pain and I don’t know how to let it go.”
Moments later, he said, “I’m living such an awesome life, it’s scary. I ain’t got no drama going on right now.”
Tyson is must-see TV. Fighting or talking, he is about as compelling an athlete as this country has even known.
Tyson was alternately funny and frightening, inspirational and heartbreaking. More than once, he choked back tears.
Tyson moved through his glory years, becoming the youngest heavyweight champion in history (“I knew I would. I knew it like I know Sunday follows Saturday. It had been drilled into my brain.”), through his decline at the hands of Don King and Robin Givens, to the lowest point of his life (the 1992 rape conviction, however, going to jail he said, wasn’t a big deal “I fit right in”), and the lowest point of his career (the night he resorted to biting a piece out of one of Evander Holyfield’s ears to escape a beating).
“I despised him so much because I admired him so much,” Tyson said of Holyfield. “I wanted to kill him. I had been jealous of him from when we were kids. I’m a spoiled brat and things weren’t going my way. I wanted to hurt him. So I bit him. I was just a [bleeping] mess.”
“Sometimes I’m filthy. I’m wretched,” he said. “And sometimes I’m not so bad. Mike Tyson ain’t nothing special. Just another human being, trying to get along.”