5 Minutes With Chris Lytle
What’s your job right now at the fire station?
I’m an engine company guy, which means that if there’s a fire, I get the hose and try to put the fire out immediately. You have engineers who do the driving, you have officers that manage the scene, you’ve got guys on the ladder who look for victims and do escape and egress—I’m the guy that tries to put the fire out.
You’ve managed to stay pretty injury free throughout 12 years of fighting and working as a firefighter, what’s your secret to staying healthy?
I take more growth hormones than anybody. No, I just think I’ve been fortunate. I’m not injury prone. I train all the time, so I don’t get out of shape. I eat pretty well. I’m pretty clean living. I don’t smoke. I don’t drink very often. When I do, I probably overdo it, but I don’t do it very often.
If you could rematch any of the guys you’ve lost to in the UFC, who would it be?
Thiago Alves. I thought we were in the midst of a fantastic fight. It was one of those fights where I didn’t care if there was anyone watching. They stopped it after two rounds, and I was like, ‘Hey, let’s finish the game. I’d like to finish the third round.’
How do you react when people call you a BJJ black belt?
People ask me all the time who I’m a black belt under. I’m not. I don’t even own a gi. I told the UFC, but they keep sayin’ it. What can I do? I told ‘em.
You’ve been saying some outrageous things in interviews … like that your ground game sucks.
I think sarcasm is a lost art. I’ll say things, maybe it’s my demeanor, but people think I’m serious. Someone asked about gogoplatas, and I said, ‘I’ve never done it, but the UFC is where I like to try new moves.’ They wrote it down like, ‘Oh, interesting.’ Dude, I’m joking. I’ve tried everything you’re going to see me do in there.
Do you think people underestimate your intelligence?
I think people assume that I’m stupid, and I don’t go out of my way to change their opinions. If people get to know me they might think, ‘Hey, this guy has a pretty good head on his shoulders,’ but if you don’t [get to know me], I don’t really care what you think, you know?
You win a lot of bonus money, do you do anything fun with it, or does it all go in a rainy-day fund?
If you ask my kids, I don’t do anything fun. If you ask me, paying off the house is fun. I like to take nice vacations and do stuff with my kids. I’ve got four kids. They do a lot of stuff, and it takes a lot of money… all the sports, activities. I bought my Jeep in 2002, and then I saved money from my paychecks the next year and a couple of fights and bought a minivan. Cash. I won’t have a car payment, ever.
I read once that you were considering running for office after you’re done fighting.
I have kicked the idea around, yeah.
What I call a Ron Paul Republican. I’m like a Republican from the 1930s. To be honest with you, at one point I thought about running as a Libertarian but then I thought, ‘Why even run? You’re not gonna win,’ and I’m not about making a statement. It’s too late in the game for that. The thing to do is run as a Republican and convert that party back to what it should be.
What’s the last CD you bought?
Man, I haven’t bought a CD in eight years.My kids do all the stuff with the iPod. If I tell‘em I want a song, they put it on there for me. I don’t know how to do it. I can’t do anything with a computer. Luckily, I’ve got four kids who take care of that stuff for me.
You can play poker online, can’t you?
Oh yeah, I can play cards online. I just got a laptop for the first time, and I asked the guys at the station, ‘How do I get online?’ They were like, ‘Oh my God.’
What was your favorite cartoon as a kid?
Tom & Jerry.
What’s your kids’ favorite cartoon?
Sponge Bob, but right now they’ve got the reruns of Tom & Jerry, and I’m like, ‘Look, it’s a mouse and a cat and they hit each other with pans and stuff.’ Cartoons don’t do that anymore, it’s all, ‘Let’s drink lemonade and hold hands.’ I don’t like it. They need to bring Woody Woodpecker back, though. I don’t know what they have against that guy.
I heard you’ve been wanting to go to Lebowski Fest. Is The Big Lebowski your favorite movie?
Probably. I like having Lebowski parties. I’m definitely going to Lebowski Fest next year. I’ll
call in sick if I have to.
We like your style, Dude…catch ya later on down the trail.