TALK IS JERICHO
Martha talking about meeting Owen Hart and his family: “I met Owen when I was so young. I was only 15 and he was 17. We were in high school. I also came from a big crazy family. My family was also a bit dysfunctional so it didn’t throw me off. But, it was a bit interesting. The house was beautiful but with so many big family members and they were all giants, it was intimidating for sure. Stu was a bit scary the first time I met him. I was really nervous about meeting him. But, he smiled at me and winked, so I thought, I’m in, I think I’m ok. It was definitely interesting. It was a lot of mixed emotions. It was exciting but it was nerve racking. There were a lot of interesting characters always at the house. There was always something interesting happening there for sure.”
Martha on how Owen got into wrestling: “Owen was never going to get into the business…Owen went to the University of Calgary on a wrestling scholarship. He was a true athlete. He was a four star letterman. He was in football, rugby, track and wrestling. He got a scholarship for wrestling. We were there together. He was going to be a Physical Ed teacher…Owen was a very sensitive person and he really loved his dad. That’s all it took was that you can really help your dad. You can help the business. We are struggling and bleeding money here so could you help. Owen worked under a mask. Then he worked in the summer as himself and it really helped to rejuvenate the whole territory. He had an issue at University that he didn’t take one of the classes that he was supposed to take so then he had to wait. He had to take a semester off, not by his choice, but had to wait, I think it was English. He then stayed through the summer and into the following semester. By the end of that semester, he was this staple in Stampede so he thought I will keep going a little bit longer. It was never the long term goal or the plan to stay in it. As life picks you up and carries you away, it has other plans. Your original plans get left in the dust. He tried for a long time to get out of the business. He applied to the fire department every year for years. At that time, it was hard to get on the fire department. You need to have a University degree. It was one of those sought after jobs, especially in Calgary. His brother and brother in law were firefighters. He knew that life and liked it and tried to pursue it. He was also a Canadian and American citizen. He also applied to be a customs agent because he thought it would be ideal because he lived in Calgary and American so he can work for customs. He always regretted that he didn’t finish his education because he was actually a very bright guy.”
Martha talking about Owen staying in WWF after the Montreal screw job: “That was a really difficult time for Owen, because even though he didn’t share the same philosophy as Bret, as far as wrestling goes, he knew that was really crushing for Bret, what happened with Vince and everything. He felt bad for his brother, of course. But he was also beholding to a contract at that time. WWF, they just had introduced a few years before that, contracts, where you were locked in for 5 years. Owen was locked into his contract. He requested he be let go too when everything happened with his brother. They said no. They weren’t going to let him go. The way the contract worked was that if you don’t work, you can’t work for somebody else. You don’t necessarily have to work, but then you aren’t making any money and you can’t work somewhere else. It was a very onerous contract where it only benefited the company, not the wrestler. Owen was really in a tough situation. He didn’t have a choice. You either stay here or go nowhere. It was emotionally difficult to see his brother so upset and betrayed, and yet have to stay and fulfill his commitment that he made to the company.”
Martha on her relationship with the Hart family today: “Unfortunately, I don’t. I don’t know if people are aware of everything that transpired with my lawsuit. The family, they weren’t that supportive of my lawsuit against WWE. The worst part of it was that some of the family actively worked against me. Other ones just remained silent. That was almost as hard as the ones that worked against me. When you break the trust, and I felt really betrayed and left alone and without any support, then although I’ve forgiven them, I’m totally passive. I wish them well. Trust me, my life hasn’t been easy and I certainly wouldn’t wish harm on anybody, I hope life has been kind to all of them. But, you know, somethings, the damage is done and you just can’t repair it. That’s one of the unfortunate causalities of war. The damage is irreparable and it can’t be repaired, but I let it go and I wish them well. I really do.”
The full episode is available at this link.