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By Lewis Carlan @PWSoth
RJ City is one of best professional wrestlers on the indy scene today. He has worked all over Canada and the USA for various promotions such as Destiny, Superkick’d, IWC, ESW, and Conflict Wrestling. When it comes to cutting a killer promo, RJ City has that talent down to a science. You would be doing yourself a huge favor by going to YouTube, type in RJ City, and watch a few promo clips as well as matches against various opponents.
I had the absolute pleasure of engaging in a terrific and very enjoyable conversation with RJ City. Here is that conversation. Enjoy!
Lewis: First off I want to say that I really appreciate that you have given me some of your time for this interview for Kayfabe Today.
RJ City: My Pleasure!
Lewis: I always like to begin my interviews by asking what inspired you to become a professional wrestler, was it is a show or a specific wrestler that influenced your decision.
RJ City: I saw Bea Arthur and Angela Lansbury sing Bosom Buddies and thought to myself this would be a lot better if it was more violent and less clothed.
Lewis: That’s totally understandable. I think Bea Arthur and Angela Lansbury would both be honored to know they inspired you to become a wrestler. Let me ask this – Bea Arthur – hot or not?
RJ City: She is everything. She is every masculine and feminine quality all rolled into one. What else do you need? If you dated her, you would cease to exist.
Lewis: I always had a crush on Ol’Bea. So tell me after you decided to become a wrestler, what kind of training did you seek out? Did you attend a specific school or did it all come naturally due to your overall greatness?
RJ City: I took the Jerry Lewis All-Star Camp Charisma course in the Catskills, which is really the foundation for most of my performing. The wrestling part is actually quite simple; hit people, try not to get hit and win as quickly as possible.
Lewis: Is it really that easy? Do you think even I could become a wrestler?
RJ City: Anyone can become a “wrestler”, but touching the hearts of millions is a different story. If you have a bat, you can play baseball, but that doesn’t make you Babe Ruth.
Lewis: Well said, I’ll stick to interviewing and hope I can touch the hearts of a few hundred. What year did you make your wrestling debut and what were you feeling when you were about to hit the ring for the very first time?
RJ City: The year was 1975 and it’s mainly a blur. There’s so many nerves that you’re not really thinking anything, you’re just praying you don’t suck. Of course you do, so every subsequent match is about sucking less. And at some point you can relax, enjoy yourself and try to irritate as many people as possible.
Lewis: Do you remember the opponent? Bruno Sammartino? Lou Thesz? Mike Graham? or maybe against one of the Yukon Lumberjacks?
RJ City: It was against my trainer, Jerry Lewis the comedian.
Lewis: I hear Jerry Lewis was the master of the shooting star press through a flaming table. How did it feel taking that?
RJ City: I was just amazed he did it with a cigarette in his mouth.
Lewis: He was a rare talent that’s for sure. I have been watching some of your promos such as RJ City on Tyson Dux, Zema Ion, Carter Mason and they all are brilliantly done. My two favorites are RJ City Hates Beards and RJ City….Good Guy? How did you perfect the art of cutting a stellar promo?
RJ City: It’s gotta come from a real place. I have actual disdain for these people and evidently, that’s relatable. I’d say I’m the best, but maybe everyone else is just really bad? Pronunciation and general vocabulary has deteriorated so much – how many times can we hear “I’ll kick your ass”? Also, let’s keep it succinct, I have places to be. If you can’t say it in 2 minutes, maybe you shouldn’t say it at all.
Lewis: Well, I can clearly say that you have one of the best promo abilities I have seen in a very long time and I was around in 1975 bro!
RJ City: You’re a sweetheart. It’s a lost art, I try to do most of my work before I get in the ring.
Lewis: I have to thank Space Monkey for introducing me to your talent. He was riding with you to a show when I was interviewing him a few weeks back. How do you think Space Monkey felt being able to ride to a show in the presence of greatness?
RJ City: Monkeys are very adaptive, they like to mimic and emulate, so after our trip he knows much more Bette Midler than he used to. He’s quite literally been a monkey on my back, we’ve tangled quite a few times and I’m sure we’ll do it again soon.
Lewis: Yeah, I watched you defeat him as one of your matches was shown live on Facebook. Who was your favorite in ring opponent and do you have a dream opponent besides Jerry Lewis?
RJ City: Gotta pick Cody Deaner; we fought so often that we ended up teaming and that was promo lightening in a bottle. I guess we admire the idiocy in each other. I’d like to take this opportunity to call out my dream opponent that everyone has wanted to see; Mr. Tony Clifton.
Lewis: Well, I’ll make a phone call to Bob Zmuda to see if he is willing to bring back Tony Clifton for a one time only return. It would be a great encounter. It would be equally great if Andy Kaufman was still alive though. I watched the match against Cody Deaner and it was a terrific one.
RJ City: Andy Kaufman is still alive. It gets more & more ridiculous every time Cody & I step into a ring.
Lewis: Kaufman is my comedy hero, and I always hold out hope that his death was just one of his elaborate pranks. So where are you from originally – Queens, NY or Richmond Hill, ON?
RJ City: The best of both worlds, Richmond Hill, Queens.
Lewis: That’s funny because I am from Queens, NY and actually moved to Richmond Hill, ON years ago. What is your ultimate goal in professional wrestling?
RJ City: I guess to do a bunch of things that haven’t been done before, whatever the hell that means. And with my own crafting web series on CBC, I think I’m well on my way.
Lewis: So in addition to professional wrestling, you are also a star on the show Splatalot. How did that all come about?
RJ City: They were looking for someone just like me (I believe the term is “chiseled”) and I got to berate and throw things at children, which I already was doing recreationally. It’s on the air in 100 countries, which is baffling, especially considering I’m not that proficient in Arabic.
Lewis: Very interesting. I wish I was chiseled and not roundish. Back to your goals in professional wrestling, if ROH, IMPACT, or WWE called, do you think you are ready to shine for them?
RJ City: “Ready” is an odd concept, so many things have to line up and come together that almost everything is out of your hands. I am quite proud of my brand of idiocy and I look forward to evolving it on whatever ring, stage or screen I appear. But if PBS calls me to host a Lawrence Welk revival; I’ve never been more ready in my life.
Lewis: Do you think you would be able to find a modern day version of The Lennon Sisters should that dream come to fruition?
RJ City: The Lennon Sisters were an once-in-a-lifetime phenomenon and Kathy Lennon will forever have my heart.
Lewis: Janet Lennon has mine. Are there any upcoming shows that you would like to plug before we wrap this up?
RJ City: Yes, stained art selfies with kids. You can find updates on all my idiocy on my Twitter or Facebook and, if you’re in the mood for a little crafting…
Lewis: That’s awesome, I’ll check it out one of these days. Let me rephrase – Any upcoming professional wrestling shows?
RJ City: Superkick’d May 19th, ESW May 20th and I’ll be doing my one man revue (RJ City Never Sleeps) in the Poconos through May 10th.
Lewis: Well, RJ, it was an absolute pleasure talking with you today and I have to say, you are quickly becoming one of my favorites. Keep up the great work and I hope we can do this again soon brother….
RJ City: You too! I am touched and bemused, as we all should be.