Jesse Ventura to Michael Phelps: Smoke pot and swim for Australia

Former Minnesota governor (and onetime wrestling star) Jesse Ventura didn't receive a ton of press coverage when he traveled to Colorado earlier this month for the premiere of Woodshop, an independent film that marks his first on-screen acting role in a decade. (According to the Internet Movie Data Base, he did voice-work on 2005's The Ringer, but last appeared on-screen as Buddy "One-Arm" Sanchez in the deathless 1999 release 20/20 Vision.) Worse, a mention in the Denver Post and an interview with Channel 9's Cheryl Preheim proved less than scintillating. Fortunately, though, the clip above, captured during his Colorado stopover and recently posted on YouTube, is much more entertaining. In it, Ventura advises Michael Phelps to swim for Australia in the next Olympics rather than put up with the attacks that have come his way since he was photographed deep-throating a bong. "How dare they!" Ventura declares, before reiterating his support for marijuana legalization. By the way, Ventura says he was a former competitive swimmer, too -- although there's no telling whether or not he could pass a drug test...

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts