August 3, 2003
Steeped in Sable
By SCOTT ZERR -- Edmonton Sun
It's getting hot in here.
On the other end of the phone is World Wrestling Entertainment diva Sable and we begin to discuss a very important issue facing a world struggling with the tensions of war, infectious diseases and economic strife.
So Sable, just exactly what goes into a bikini match?
"Well, I'll let that innuendo slip by," giggled the busty blond, from her home town of Jacksonville, Florida.
Sweat begins to pour.
"First of all, proper diet and training so I can be sure I can fit into the bikini," continued Sable, who will strut her stuff tonight against rival beauties Dawn Marie and Nidia at Skyreach Centre.
"Then I have to find a bikini that will look flattering on me. Of course, the smaller the better. I definitely have to be tanned and toned. The fans will have to decide who's the winner. I'm sure it'll be stiff competition."
Hey, somebody open a window.
Sable (Rena Mero) rejoined the WWE in April after a four-year hiatus from the business when she focused on modelling and a brief acting career, highlighted by a stint on Relic Hunter and appearances in four movies including Corky Romano. She returned to a company she left rather abruptly after wrestling had afforded her the opportunity to become a household name - an extreme diva.
Sable made history with her first Playboy pictorial, an issue that has yet to be rivalled for sales even by other cover girls Pamela Anderson, Carmen Electra, any of the reality TV grasp-for-one-last-moment-of-fame-seekers and even fellow WWE star Torrie Wilson. Those record-breaking sales prompted the five-foot-six former women's champion to make more history, becoming the first Playmate to achieve cover status twice in the same year. She also found herself on the cover of TV Guide twice.
But coming back to the WWE didn't seem likely. That bridge looked to have been burned, yet Sable was back in the ring shortly after Wrestlemania XIX in Seattle this past April, though under very different circumstances.
This time, Sable is on her own.
"I'm not concerned about what someone else's opinion might be. I really only have to answer to myself and that makes things a lot easier," said Sable, who is no longer by the side of ex-husband "Wildman" Marc Mero.
"The biggest difference is now I can really show what I can do as a person. I've really learned about the entertainment business and that my job is to perform. It's certainly a lot easier not always having to be concerned with what other people are thinking about me.
"I do what I enjoy doing and I give the fans what they want. I know where to draw the line. I know who the real me is."
Somewhere in everyday life is the true person and it's a mix of what is seen on TV every week and who she is away from the cameras and fans.
"There is a clear difference between Sable and Rena," she explained. "But there is a lot of comparisons as well.
"We are both strong, confident, independent women. But am I going to slap someone or call them a bitch? No. That's the difference. That's what I'm allowed to get away with on TV. I like playing a bad person on TV because you don't get to be a heel or a villain in real life."
Sable, or in this case Rena, is also not going to hide the fact that she is eye candy for millions and was voted the No. 1 sex star of the new millennium by Playboy readers. In the ring or out, Sable seems at ease and in tune with the risque side of her personality.
"A lot of women's groups feel posing like that is degrading but I believe it's empowering," said Sable. "I made the decision for myself and I would absolutely do it again.
"I'm very comfortable with my sexuality. In my personal life, I'm not so blatant and I don't put everything out there for everyone to know about. But it is very liberating for me, both the person I play on TV and especially being in Playboy."
Five days every week, Sable is the sultry, conniving vixen. Then it's back home for two days of laundry, hair and nail treatments and, most importantly, being a caring single mom to her daughter.
"I maintain a focus on keeping my personal life private because any time you're in the public spotlight, people see your profile and think they know you as a person.
"You have a responsibility to the fans whether you see yourself as a role model or not, but I try not to talk about my personal life. The things I do when I'm on my time off I like to leave unknown."
This is a job unlike many - lauded for its frills and excitement and bemoaned for its unforgiving demands. Those on the inside are addicted and Sable doesn't plan on leaving the life behind again any time soon.
"The sacrifices I have to make are well worth it," she said.
"After leaving I wasn't sure how well I'd be received coming back, but it's been everything I wanted and more. I'm honoured to be back and working with such great people, especially the other girls. They're all extremely supportive and encouraging of each other.
"I couldn't be any happier."