When Guy Fieri was in middle school, he started his very first business: “The Awesome Pretzel Cart.” The cart specialized in the production of awesome pretzels, and from there the bleach-blonde bad boy has gone on to star in a number of awesome television shows (Guy’s Big Bite, Guy Off the Hook, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives), and open a plethora of awesome restaurants (Guy’s Burger Joint, Guy’s American Kitchen and Bar, Guy Fieri’s Chophouse).

While cooking up some pizzas with writer Michael Mooney​, Fieri charts his rise from lowly pretzel cart purveyor to culinary mega star in a new profile for the aptly titled Success magazine.

Here are the five biggest takeaways we found in the article:

  • Fieri is getting tired of fame, and wants run away to Mexico. “I’m gonna open a small restaurant on the beach in Mexico,” he told Success. “We’re only gonna have a few tables and we’re only gonna cook what’s fresh that day. We’re gonna get back to the basics....Real food for real people."
  • Fieri knows exactly why you’re making fun of him (well, “probably”), but he doesn’t care.​ If I probably didn’t have tattoos, or if I probably didn’t bleach my hair, or if I probably didn’t wear blue jeans and a T-shirt to fancy things, if I didn’t do things that make me look like someone who’s whacked out of their mind, it’d probably be different,” he said. “But then again, that’s how I wanna dress. And I like my tattoos. And I like my hair cut the way it is.”
  • Still, all those cheap shots from Anthony Bourdain have taken their toll over the years.​ “I’m like anybody else,” he explains. “You get enough, you can get beat up. You can get hurt. You can get frustrated. You can get demoralized.”
  • It’s pronounced Fee-EDDY, people.​ When Fieri got a call back for The Next Food Network Star in 2006, he initially thought it was a prank call from one of his friends. “When she paused and apologized for mangling my last name, I thought maybe this is real,” he explains.
  • Fieri and his friends all have amazing nicknames.​ “He has the same friends he had before he was famous,” Mooney writes in the article. “They have nicknames like ‘Mustard��� and ‘Dirty’ and ‘Possum’ and ‘The Spaniard.’ Fieri’s friends mostly call him ‘Guido.’”

While the profile goes pretty deep, Fieri still manages to evade any questioning about his leaked mixtape.

[via Success]