WWE Hall of Famer Rikishi has recalled being on the end of a practical joke from Curt Henning involving a towel and the most famous part of his anatomy.
With wrestlers traditionally spending much of their lives on the road, their inner child often found ways of amusing themselves and their fellow grapplers. Over the years this has led to a plethora of stories about “ribs” or practical jokes that wrestlers played on other members of the travelling circus.
“Mr Perfect” Curt Hennig became somewhat legendary for his pranks which sometimes extended to when he was in the ring. If ever there was an opportunity to have some playful fun at a fellow star’s expense, Hennig made sure to never miss it.
Speaking on Stories with Brisco and Bradshaw, Rikishi recalled being on the receiving end of one of these ribs. Even though there 70,000 people in an Australian stadium looking on.
“You don’t even see that coming. Kurt is that smooth. It couldn’t have been a better place for him to do it than in front of 70,000 people. I believe we were in Australia,”
“We were in Brisbane or Sydney and it was a big, huge coliseum we were at. I worked against Kurt, and Kurt comes with his towel. I’m thinking that he threw his freaking towel out of the ring, but by the time I come to give the Stink Face, he turns around and sticks that damn towel right up the crack of my a**.”
Despite the situation, Rikishi said that he didn’t get upset over the incident, rather he looked to get his own back down the road, as was the mentality at the time.
“He would just sit there and just laugh and laugh about it and have a good time. That’s how the old school cats were back in the day. Normally somebody would get hot, like, ‘Hey, you fucked my shit up in front of people. This shit ain’t funny.’ For us, it was like, ‘Alright, you’re one up. I’ll catch you the next time…’ You know what they say; “You give a rib, you better learn how to take a rib because you don’t know what type of rib you’re going to get,”
Another man known for his ability pull the perfect rib was Rikishi’s uncle, Mr Fuji. The Hall of Famer recalled one famous incident where Fuji took the wheels off a car being used by the Smoking Gunns. It was a prank that nearly got the young tag team fired.
“I remember when Smoking Gunns, you remember Bart and Billy when they first came in with the cowboy gimmick. So we had an old Texas run. Of course, they’re green and ‘we’re cowboys, we’re superstars.’ So they tried to rib Uncle Fuji. They go in and we check into the hotel and we told them, ‘Listen, you guys are gonna follow us to the arena, make sure you guys are not late.’ So these cats go up — and they must have done something to Uncle Fuji a week ago. Uncle Fuji didn’t forget.
So these guys come here — remember they used to rent those Cadillac Deville’s back in the day? It was a lot more roomy for the guys. So these guys just started but they rented that Cadillac Deville. So I was like, ‘These guys are already getting big-headed.’ We know they should be in a Ford Taurus, but they’re in a Cadillac.
So Uncle Fuji, as soon as they go upstairs they park their car in the lobby, John, when these guys came back down, all of the tires were off of the damn Cadillac. It was just sitting in the lobby. Guess who hit them? Uncle Fuji. They were late to the show and almost got fired.”
Rikishi continued, describing a prank he called “the most gross rib” he heard in his life. A tale involving a BBQ, the usual assortment of wrestlers and Mr Fuji’s sadly deceased dog.
“You know what’s probably the most gross rib I’ve ever heard in my life was Uncle Fuji,”
“So the wrestlers came to Uncle Fuji’s house and Uncle Fuji, he barbecued. So what happened was one of his German Shepherds a week before the boys were coming through. When the boys came through, he was marinating all this meat. He barbecued this meat and all the boys were like, ‘Oh my god, this is good meat. What is it?’ Uncle pulled out the head of the animal that passed away and put it up in front of them. Every single person that was there threw up.
Till this day, when Uncle Fuji was alive, I have never ever thought about ribbing that man. Even when we were on the road, I would never even cross my mind to rib Fuji.”
Rikishi appeared for WWE from 1992 to 2004. During this period he won World Tag Team gold three times, captured the Intercontinental Championship and famously “did it for The Rock.”
Since 2012 the star has made a series of special appearances, while being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2015. Two of his sons form the tag team The Usos, while another a third son Joseph is set to debut on NXT 2.0 in the very near future.
H/t to Fightful for the transcription.