The cast of 'The Surreal Life: Season 2'
Screencap from Jedward's 'Ice Ice Baby', featuring Vanilla Ice
To commemorate the relaunch of the Ford Mustang 5.0, we rang up Robert Matthew Van Winkle, better known by his nom de mike, Vanilla Ice. We posted most of the highlights from that interview over at TheCarConnection, but there's one bit we left out -- something that has nothing at all to do with the Mustang, but everything to do with the man, the myth, the...um, the man.
During our chat with Rob, we naturally asked about his many celebrity encounters. We wanted to know if there was one that stood out above the others as being more memorable or meaningful or just plain crazy. Hell, the guy held Gary Coleman over a deep fryer, lived with Ron Jeremy, and schtupped Madonna for the better part of a year -- surely he had some juicy gossip to share.
But in fact, Rob was much more innocent and kind than we'd hoped. Unlike certain writers we could name, Rob isn't the sort of guy to dwell on sordid stuff. Without missing a beat, he started talking about his stint on The Surreal Life: Season Two, and an encounter he had with Tammy Faye Messner.
Apparently, that was a low period in Rob's life, and he wasn't very happy with himself. Rob says that he was frustrated with some of the turns his life had taken, and he wanted a fresh start. But during a talk with Tammy Faye, she looked at him with those big eyes and said, "Sweetie, you are who you are because of who you were." Those words have stuck with him ever since.
Thankfully, other things haven't stuck with Rob -- like the hair he was sporting circa 1990, when he appeared on Top of the Pops for this performance of "Ice Ice Baby". Yo, check out the hook while his DJ revolves it: