Mickey Royal (@mickey_royal) is a former gangster, drug dealer, pimp, mob enforcer, and bestselling author of The Pimp Game: Instructional Guide and The Pimp Guide: Secrets of Mind Manipulation. [This is part one of a two-part episode. Follow up with part two here!]
What We Discuss with Mickey Royal:
- How Mickey’s pseudobulbar affect and bipolar disorder came in handy as advantages in his line of work.
- What being deemed “capable” in certain circles means — and why it’s a networking mistake among criminals to turn your back on the type of job this entails (even if you’ve since moved “up”).
- How Mickey established The Royal Family — an organized stable of prostitutes that ran with the efficiency of a Fortune 500 company.
- Why someone who’s smart enough to make money through illicit entrepreneurial means would probably find outstanding success in the mainstream under different circumstances.
- How the mental toll of seeing people only from the levers by which they can be manipulated adds up and makes “normal” relationships difficult to impossible.
- And much more…
Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider including your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!
A smart kid under the wrong circumstances isn’t necessarily destined for success. But “wrong” isn’t a word someone who wants to survive stocks in their vocabulary. And on this episode, we talk to someone who not only survived under what mainstream society would consider the epitome of wrong circumstances, but thrived.
Mickey Royal is a former gangster, drug dealer, pimp, mob enforcer, and bestselling author of The Pimp Game: Instructional Guide and The Pimp Guide: Secrets of Mind Manipulation. Here, he joins us to explain what it means to be deemed “capable” in certain circles, how this designation is difficult to shake even when it’s beneath one’s status, and what it’s like to carry the burden of manipulating the lives of others who could have lived much more functional, fulfilling lives had they only never met you. Listen, learn, and enjoy! [This is part one of a two-part episode. Follow up with part two here!]
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
Please note that some of the links on this page (books, movies, music, etc.) lead to affiliate programs for which The Jordan Harbinger Show receives compensation. It’s just one of the ways we keep the lights on around here. Thank you for your support!
Sign up for Six-Minute Networking — our free networking and relationship development mini course — at jordanharbinger.com/course!
This Episode Is Sponsored By:
Zelle: Learn more at zellepay.com
Apartments.com: Learn more at apartments.com
Progressive: Get a free online quote at progressive.com
Miss our conversation with true crime exoneree Amanda Knox? Catch up with episode 386: Amanda Knox | The Truth About True Crime here!
On The Stacking Benjamins Show, you’ll hear hosts Joe Saul-Sehy and OG present a parade of financial headlines, personal finance experts, creatives, and people with inspiring stories. Check it out here or wherever you listen to fine podcasts!
Thanks, Mickey Royal!
If you enjoyed this session with Mickey Royal, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:
And if you want us to answer your questions on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at email@example.com.
Resources from This Episode:
- The Pimp Game: Instructional Guide by Mickey Royal | Amazon
- The Pimp Guide: Secrets of Mind Manipulation (The Pimp Game Book 2) by Mickey Royal | Amazon
- Pimps | Trafficked with Mariana van Zeller S1E5
- Mickey Royal | Website
- Mickey Royal | Twitter
- Mickey Royal | Facebook
- Mickey Royal | YouTube
- Understanding the Recruitment of Child Soldiers in Africa | Accord
- The Real Disorder Behind the Joker’s Laugh | Inside Edition
- Freeway Rick Ross | Life in the Crack Lane | Jordan Harbinger
- Burglar | Prime Video
- All 14 Characters From Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out, Ranked | BroBible
- The Showstopper by Salt-n-Pepa | Amazon Music
- Donnie Brasco | Prime Video
- The Dark Truth About Blackwater | The Brookings Institution
- Shaft (1971) | Prime Video
- The Gorilla Commercial 1970 | American Tourister Europe
- Along for the Ride by Mickey Royal | Amazon
- Nation of Islam | Southern Poverty Law Center
- Nigerian Prince Scams Still Rake in over $700,000 a Year | CNBC
- Shaq on Goal Setting & Lifelong Learning | Jordan Harbinger
- The Soul Train Dancers 1982 | Disco Saturday Night TV
- Legendary Coach Bob Knight Involved in Multiple Gunshot Incidents | Sportscasting
- Phil Jackson | Twitter
- Charlie’s Angels Throughout the Years | CR Fashion Book
- Rise of the Planet of the Apes: Can Drugs Make Us Smarter? | Discovery
- Pimp: The Story of My Life by Iceberg Slim | Amazon
- 4 Entrepreneurial Takeaways From America’s Playboy | Entrepreneur
- North Dallas Forty | Prime Video
- Cheyanne Foxx and Mickey Royal: My Relationship is Toxic AF! | KNOCKturnal
- Fremont Ranks No.1 Happiest City in America in New Survey | KTVU
- The Tale of Two Wolves | Nanticoke Indian Association
- The Rivals (1952) | The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet
- How Cus D’Amato Made Mike Tyson Champion | The World of Boxing
548: Mickey Royal | A Pimp’s Secrets of Mind Manipulation Part One
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Special thanks to Zelle for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:04] Coming up next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:07] Mickey Royal: I tell people in any game, you can only rise to the level of your intelligence. A moron who goes into the pimp game is still a moron. You know, money does not raise the IQ. You know, so if you're a genius and you can't get any other opportunities elsewhere and you go into the drug game and you get — or any other illegal business where it's not regulated and you get a chance to really flourish, it's not that you're a great drug dealer. It's just the fact that you have 140 IQ and you never got a chance to show that. You would have done the same at Chrysler too if they had hired you, it's you — you take your brain.
[00:00:47] Jordan Harbinger: Welcome to the show. I'm Jordan Harbinger. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most fascinating people. We have in-depth conversations with people at the top of their game, astronauts, entrepreneurs, spies, psychologists, even the occasional billionaire investor, former cult member, or undercover agents. Each episode turns our guests' wisdom into practical advice that you can use to build a deeper understanding of how the world works and become a better critical thinker.
[00:01:13] If you're new to the show, or you want to tell your friends about the show — and of course, I always appreciate that — we've got those starter packs. jordanharbinger.com/start is where you can find them. They're your favorite episodes organized by popular topics. That'll help new listeners get a taste of everything that we do here because we are so varied. Once again, jordanharbinger.com/start to get started or to help somebody else get started as well. Again, I always appreciate it when you share this show.
[00:01:38] Today, Mickey Royal is a former gangster, drug dealer, pimp, mob enforcer, and best-selling author. As a pimp, he opened brothels, after hours clubs, escort services, swing parties, adult bookstores — you name it, live warriors shows, whatever. He even unionized prostitution. That was a thing that probably was long overdue, candidly. Law enforcement often uses his book, The Pimp Game: An Instructional Guide as a textbook for agents to get into the minds and inner workings of human traffickers. He says he was first detained at age five for an attempted murder in daycare. I got to get that story. I hope that's a joke, but after doing the show and thinking it probably wasn't. Look, there's a lot I could say about Mickey Royal. He's sort of a gang enforcer type turned pimp turned entrepreneur turned author, but I'm going to let this two-part episode speak for itself because this one is wild and Mickey is a great storyteller. By way of warning, I was on the fence about doing this one, about airing this one. It's pretty graphic. It's kind of horrific in many ways. This is going to be offensive to many, but it is insightful and it's certainly entertaining. And that said, it's not meant to glorify the industry or any criminal activity. And I think that'll come through once you listen.
[00:02:43] And if you're wondering how I managed to make connections like this, it's because my network is wide and diverse. And I'm teaching you how to build your own network for free over at jordanharbinger.com/course. By the way, most of the guests on the show, they subscribe to the course, they contribute to the course. Come join us, you'll be in smart company where you belong. Now, here's Mickey Royal.
[00:03:04] All the people I've read about in the books, which I'll link in the show notes. Like, are you still in touch with a lot of these people? Some of them, no, right? They disappeared.
[00:03:10] Mickey Royal: They went off about their lives.
[00:03:12] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:12] Mickey Royal: And a lot of them are. People look at my Facebook friends and see women married with kids hiking up a mountain. They now live in China or Texas or whatever, as she's standing in her square life. You didn't know that woman 20 years ago.
[00:03:25] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:26] Mickey Royal: I did that. We're Facebook friends and we're, "Hi, how are you doing?" if I see them in the mall, I walk past them and don't say anything.
[00:03:31] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that would be a little awkward if they're with their kids and husband. Like, "How do you know that guy with—"
[00:03:36] Mickey Royal: With the crushed velvet hat.
[00:03:39] Jordan Harbinger: You still wear like all that stuff out and about.
[00:03:41] Mickey Royal: I tell people I quit my old job, but I didn't turn in a uniform. I mean my clothes are my clothes.
[00:03:47] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I suppose that makes sense. It would be kind of hard to take everything off. I want to back up a little bit. I got to say, man, I don't think I've ever read an acknowledgement section in a book that had RIP next to so many of the names. Like, I don't mean to make a joke out of that, but I'm like, wow. Okay. No wonder when you told me earlier, you didn't think you'd make it to 20, I kind of get why. If almost, most of the people you know/hung out with are not with us anymore.
[00:04:13] Mickey Royal: Long time ago, they were dropping like flies, I mean like every three weeks. You know, I've been shot twice. I've been stabbed once. Mexican mafia tried to kill me in my sleep.
[00:04:22] Jordan Harbinger: Mexican mob in the United States?
[00:04:24] Mickey Royal: I never had problems with the Tijuana cartels or anybody below the border, never. We did good business for years. I went to jail down there, but that was my own fault.
[00:04:32] Jordan Harbinger: Usually is, right? I mean—
[00:04:34] Mickey Royal: Yeah. They say, "Why did you go to jail in TJ?" "I was guilty."
[00:04:37] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:04:39] Mickey Royal: Guilty people get locked up. That's what happens. But no, I got stabbed — I was asleep at a halfway house. This is four years after I did what I did. And you figure what you do in prison, stays in prison. It doesn't bleed to the streets and I'm sound asleep. And you can tell the guy was an amateur because he put his hand on my neck first because he was aiming for my temple. I was sleeping on my side, but when he put his hand on my — when someone puts their hand on your neck in your sleep, you turn.
[00:05:00] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:05:00] Mickey Royal: And when I turned, his ice pick actually came down. I got four stitches right here. I got 11 in my mouth and the bottom part of my tongue was separated. So I have a lisp now and it broke several of my teeth. I got it fixed. And interviews right after that, you see me holding my hand over my mouth and stuff because it's really crack that I look like a Jack O'Lantern, but I've gotten them fixed. It was just bleeding and stuff. And he ran out of there and I'm sitting there with an ice pick in my face, but I told the directors that I fell.
[00:05:26] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:05:26] Mickey Royal: We whack each other, but we don't tell each other secrets. And you can't tell because if I closed my mouth, it's like straight up and down.
[00:05:32] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, you can't tell.
[00:05:33] Mickey Royal: But on the inside, my teeth are like, this is off centered. So a lot of words, sometimes I have to spell them because like the word P-U-R-E, I cannot pronounce that word. Some words I can't pronounce anymore because my mouth was—
[00:05:45] Jordan Harbinger: Stabbed with the ice pick. Wow.
[00:05:47] Mickey Royal: Yeah, because I wouldn't give the name up to the police. They wouldn't give me a ride to the hospital. So I had to catch the train there, holding the towel—
[00:05:55] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my God. That must've been interesting. Like I can imagine sitting next to somebody like, "Hey, are you okay?" "Yeah. I'm just on my way to the hospital." "What happened?" "Well, I got stabbed in the face with the ice pick." "Dude, it's four o'clock in the morning."
[00:06:07] Mickey Royal: You've read my bio and you know, my father was primarily raised in the Soviet Union. And when I got to Kaiser, the guy who was admitting us was Russian and my first name is Russian. So he started asking me questions and he said, "Don't worry filling out this. I'll get you next. I’ll get you a good room." And he asked me if I was Russian. And I said, "No, my father basically is. He's from Mali, originally." And he said, "He's still Russian. Come with me." And I was like, "Doc, I'm like bleeding."
[00:06:35] Jordan Harbinger: I did read your bio but there was nothing in there about your dad, your parents actually in the bio you sent me. So I'm curious. What your dad's from Mali, but he's right?
[00:06:43] Mickey Royal: Yeah. He was a child soldier in Mali.
[00:06:45] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:06:46] Mickey Royal: A lot of child soldiers ended up in Israel and Russia. Where else do you get people who've had killing experience since the age of 10?
[00:06:53] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:06:54] Mickey Royal: So they're already desensitized and they know what they're doing by the age of 12 and 13. So he went from there, did a little time in Libya. It's just a job. And he actually was on Russia side against Afghanistan.
[00:07:07] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:07:08] Mickey Royal: He's a Muslim. But he went to war against the Muslim contracts. Why? He said, "They paid me more."
[00:07:12] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. So he was a mercenary from the time he was a kid. Is he still around?
[00:07:17] Mickey Royal: Yeah, he's around. He doesn't know it, but he has advanced stages of damage. But he doesn't know it because he's severely bipolar. So am I, which helped in my line of work. And I'm slightly PBA, so you'll see me giggle sometimes or laugh.
[00:07:32] Jordan Harbinger: PBA?
[00:07:32] Mickey Royal: I can't pronounce it because of my mouth. But have you ever seen the movie The Joker?
[00:07:36] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, of course. Yeah.
[00:07:37] Mickey Royal: You know how he laughs when he's really crying.
[00:07:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:07:40] Mickey Royal: Sometimes along the way I've had gang names as a child, as Dr. Giggles. Mr. Happy stuff like that, because if I'm shooting someone, I would laugh, but I'm not really laughing. It comes out as laughter.
[00:07:52] Jordan Harbinger: Pseudobulbar affect, pseudobulbar affect.
[00:07:56] Mickey Royal: Yeah, because of my mouth. I can't pronounce that word. I can't pronounce—
[00:07:59] Jordan Harbinger: It's hard. It's hard for everyone to pronounce. Pseudobulbar affect typically occurs in people with certain neurological conditions or injuries, which might affect the way the brain controls emotion characterized by episodes of sudden uncontrollable and inappropriate laughing or crying. So that's right, from The Joker, he would be upset and he would cry, laugh. Oh, so they called you that because when you were in intense situation, like you're doing some violent thing, you just start laughing. That would be weird, yeah.
[00:08:24] Mickey Royal: Yeah, and they will really freak people out, especially when we were all like 15 and 16.
[00:08:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:08:28] Mickey Royal: That's why I don't go to funerals because I don't want to be chased down the street with about 300 people going, "I wasn't laughing. No, I didn't find it funny."
[00:08:35] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:08:35] Mickey Royal: You know, so I don't go to funeral because I may start laughing.
[00:08:38] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. So your dad was a child soldier and then moved to the United States. I mean, that's kind of a journey, right? If he's working for the Russians in Afghanistan and from Africa. What does the child soldier do for work when you get to the United States? I mean, what did he—?
[00:08:52] Mickey Royal: Well, he eventually got his master's degrees, cause he's always in school. If you go to any college campus in the US, you'll find Asians and you'll find Africans. The Asians might go and then graduate. The Africans never graduate. You'll see them at 60 because they're thinking of school, school, school, school, school then death. So even once they're working, if they're driving cabs, they're in school somewhere. It's this thing about school. So he's always been in school. He has a master's. My mother has a masters. My background does not reflect my resume.
[00:09:21] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that's interesting. Because I was thinking, okay, I wonder how this guy grew up if he got into like gang violence, stick ups, and pimpin and all that. And meanwhile, like mom, dad, masters degree. But I mean, if he was a child soldier, he wasn't probably in school back then he's making up for lost time by being in school.
[00:09:38] Mickey Royal: Yeah. He didn't talk about his childhood. They didn't talk about much of anything. He was mostly in St. Petersburg, Leningrad. I think it was a term. And I hear little stories, but not too many. I mean, what's he going to tell you? "We went from village to village chopping people's heads off. I was 12." I mean, what kind of stories? I don't ask him questions. I don't call them father. I call them teachers. He speaks to us in Swahili Northern dialect and I would come to him every morning. I'd say, "Habari yako asubuhi hii mwalimu." And that means, "How are you this morning teacher? I didn't know he was bipolar. Sometimes that might mean I'm going to go outside and ride bikes with you. Sometimes that might mean I'm going to slam the door in your face and sleep for the next two days. Sometimes that might mean I'm going to cook you a big breakfast. Sometimes that might mean you're on your own. I didn't know what that meant from day to day. I know he taught survival classes to mostly women, anti-rape kind of things.
[00:10:24] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. So by the time you were 18, you had $70,000 under the mattress. And that might sound like a lot, but it was a hell of a lot more when you were 18. That's for sure.
[00:10:34] Mickey Royal: A hell of a lot more. And in my crowd that's like maybe a million in normal people's money. You're the line of jungle. That's a lot, especially in small bills. And I used to throw it up and play with it and throw it in my bed and roll around in it sometimes. Because I'm still a kid, you know, I'm a man-child.
[00:10:52] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:10:52] Mickey Royal: You know, I'm man enough to make it, but not man enough to do what's right with it.
[00:10:56] Jordan Harbinger: Right. You're not investing it.
[00:10:57] Mickey Royal: No, God. Invest? Yeah. Invested in a shoe box in my closet, you know, in my mattress at this stuff like that.
[00:11:06] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. No, that makes sense to me. I mean, it looks, that makes a lot of sense because I don't really see — if you're growing up in that environment, you're not thinking like, "Hmm, how do I put this money to work and get some interest payments or put it in stocks and securities." You're thinking you might lose it—
[00:11:18] Mickey Royal: Right.
[00:11:19] Jordan Harbinger: —soon. Right? I mean, maybe even spending it faster than you get it or as fast as you get it.
[00:11:23] Mickey Royal: To me, it just meant buying some kilos and trying to become a kingpin. That was everyone's goal back then, because that was during Freeway Rick's heyday and everybody wanted to be him or be like him. And with that kind of money, you really couldn't because he had a direct connect. So he would have to be your connect. And usually you were connected with someone who was dealing with him. He was just moving like 400 or 500 kilos a week. And the people I knew weren't no where near that.
[00:11:47] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:11:48] Mickey Royal: So you would deal with someone he dealt with. He had it almost at a manufacturer's level.
[00:11:53] Jordan Harbinger: He did. When I had him on the show — I forget what episode number that is, but I'll link it in the show notes. In today's money, he had made like over a billion dollars in sales, which is just like—
[00:12:03] Mickey Royal: Yeah.
[00:12:04] Jordan Harbinger: That's like drug cartel, except for it's like — he was like El Chapo, but just in like California or the west coast area, or he was all over the US but still like to have an operation that big at that time is like, it boggles the mind how big that operation was.
[00:12:20] Mickey Royal: It depends on how you look at it. Lucky enough to be living with one of the city's biggest drug dealers and one of the original Crips founders. So I got to meet a lot of these people personally, at the age of 14, 15, because when it came to enforce the work, I was a little more advanced than everyone else. So I was using it in the company of adults. I really didn't like selling drugs. I had a couple of bad experiences. I didn't mind backroom sales and things like that. But as far as hand-to-hand on the street where you start, yeah, I had some near misses, you know, and some hits. I mean, I got shot in the chest. Again, coming from my background with my parents who — see my life changed once they got a divorce. We went from living up the hill on 104th Crenshaw to downhill, which they call the bottoms because now you're going from a two-parent income to a one-parent income and then one parent gets cancer. So I'm basically living with my aunt and uncle. And I mean, you go from having your own bedroom and a pile of toys to basically sleeping on your relatives floor and sleeping bags.
[00:13:20] Jordan Harbinger: Oh man.
[00:13:21] Mickey Royal: So it was like a big shock to me. So now when you walk outside, that neighborhood is so different. There's only predator and prey, and I don't do prey too well. And because of the bipolar, you became an extreme predator. You know, so you do something long enough, it becomes who you are.
[00:13:36] Jordan Harbinger: How did you get into the pimp game? I know you started as like a stick — is it fair to say like stick up kid in a way. Like there's some early stories in the book where you're kind of like robbing jewelers houses and stuff like that.
[00:13:47] Mickey Royal: Well, I really wasn't big into stealing because — believe it or not, I try to live by a moral code. I remember what Whoopi Goldberg said at best in the movie Burglar. It's not what you steal. It's who you steal from. I've done three bank robberies in my life. two on purpose, one by accident.
[00:14:01] Jordan Harbinger: How do you accidentally rob a bank? How does that—
[00:14:04] Mickey Royal: Would you like to know?
[00:14:05] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Finish your thought here, but then yes, I want to know how you accidentally rob a bank for sure.
[00:14:09] Mickey Royal: Stealing wasn't really my thing. The first stick up I did, I think I was like 12 and a half and I robbed a liquor store in the neighborhood from a guy who used to pay me $5 to go get his lunch. His lunch came to about 220. And he would, let me keep the change, which I would spend in this video game called Punch-Out!! the boxing game.
[00:14:26] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Well, everybody our age knows Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! man, for sure.
[00:14:30] Mickey Royal: And I played the guitar and I basically gave it back to him. And when I came in with a mask, he could tell from my body type, my voice, of course, who I was. And I remember doing that at 12 and a half. And halfway down the street, I remember crying because I felt like I had heard somebody who trusted me.
[00:14:46] And the next day I brought every penny back. I didn't spend anything. I just cried the whole day. And when I brought it back, I remember looking at his face. He just kept shaking his head. And I kept saying, "It's all there. Just all of them. I'm sorry." And I couldn't look at him and he just kept shaking his head. So it's like, I can't steal from a human being. I don't see institutions as human. And I think that that's our money. You know, you twisted it in a way—
[00:15:08] Jordan Harbinger: You rationalize it, yeah.
[00:15:09] Mickey Royal: You rationalize. So, yeah. Banks were never — that was all high school stuff. Again, coming from my background, I kind of thought that was beneath me. It's like I was going into crime and I wasn't quite set on what type of criminal I wanted to be. So I tried everything and I was good at a lot of things. And some things I couldn't do enforcement work with no problem. But my mentor once told me, he said, "I can rob a bank with you, but I can't snatch a purse with you." He's like, "I can't do that."
[00:15:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:15:39] Mickey Royal: I can't take from a working person. You know, a person who had it as rough as me or my father growing up. It's just something sick about that. But an institution, oh, no, they're in trouble. That's sure about a government, but yeah, about the accident, I loaned a friend — because I don't have friends in the life. I learned early because it's like a chess game and sometimes chess pieces have to be removed and you can't be in a situation where you hesitate. And if I know your parents and your parents know mine that we grew up together, riding big wheels, I may not be able to do it. So I kept my friends separate from my real friends. And these were just coworkers. As I looked at it, chess pieces sometimes, maybe mind that had to be removed a couple of times they tried. So this was a friend-friend. And I didn't know then, you know, we knew he was different, but looking back on it, he was autistic. He wanted to sell drugs and have things too. And I kept trying to tell him, "No, no, no." So he bought $1,500 from me. And then he said, he'd pay me back in a week. I said, okay. Remember, I'm like 17 at this time. And he came back and said, he got robbed. Now I know him. He probably got robbed by a bunch of girls. I mean, it really wasn't for him.
[00:16:43] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:16:43] Mickey Royal: He's what you call a good kid. But business is business and I was trying to scare him in the car. I wasn't going to hurt him. I just said I was going to, I would never laid a glove. I probably would shake him up a little bit. Like I said, he was my friend and I gave him this big, long lecture about the rules of the same for everybody. And I said, "I'm going to be at your house at 12 o'clock midnight. Not 12:01, not 11:59. You don't have my money, there will be a damage of a collateral nature." And I guess the way I said it, he said, "Pull over." We pulled over and I got out. He got on the front. I thought he was going in to get maybe some of his college money to get it back. He comes out, walking real fast to the car and screaming at me to drive. Now I'm queuing up my tape. It was a showstopper. I remember by Salt-N-Pepa. And it's a certain part because you remember how vain I am. I'm queuing up the part so that when the girls walk by, I want them to see me driving off, looking cool and leaning to the side on my favorite part, you know?
[00:17:31] So I'm queuing up my theatron I'm like, "Would you hold on, man? Be cool. Give me about 30 seconds, man. Relax!" And he hands me a bag with about 4,500, apparently he just hit one Telegraph on the left and I'm like, "This is more than you owe." And I'm seeing people come outside. So thank God is not the day of cameras. So I've been all on YouTube when I got home, but they were coming outside and screaming and pointing and I'm putting two and two together and I'm screaming. "What did you do? What just happened?" He said, "Well, you said you was going to kill me." I said, "I was bluffing," and I drove off. And that's the only time I can remember being scared because I said, "Oh my God, I'm going to go to prison for something. I didn't even do."
[00:18:05] Jordan Harbinger: Well, you didn't plan anything, right? So you don't know like anything. You had no—
[00:18:09] Mickey Royal: I didn't know what he was going to do. I thought he was going in there to make an honest withdrawal. Come out. Maybe with about six—? Because nobody has that kind of money in high school.
[00:18:15] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. He's going to give you 500 bucks to get rid of you and say, "Can I give that up next week?"
[00:18:20] Mickey Royal: I don't give him a lecture on stay in your lane. "You don't have to be like me for me to like you. I like you for who you are. You read books. You play basketball. When I'll come with you, I just want to be around the books and the basketball.
[00:18:33] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. You had real friends like, so that, that must have been kind of a stress reliever if you're like beating people up and jacking stuff and doing enforce — so when you say enforcer work, that's like you're the muscle for some other crime organization. Is that what that means?
[00:18:46] Mickey Royal: I don't use that because I like to separate reality from Hollywood. So the term hitman is never heard, used in real vernacular.
[00:18:56] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:18:56] Mickey Royal: That's television.
[00:18:57] Jordan Harbinger: It's like some 1930s stuff or whatever.
[00:18:59] Mickey Royal: Yeah, and that's not what they say. I've dealt with the Russians. I've dealt with the Italians for over a decade. They use the word capable when they're introducing you. I've never heard, I've heard friend. I've never heard of a friend of ours. Never heard that. No, actually, I did hear that once.
[00:19:14] Jordan Harbinger: A friend of ours is old Italian mafia stuff.
[00:19:16] Mickey Royal: Yeah. I heard that once in the room, but they weren't referring to me. They were referring to somebody. I don't remember, "Oh, he's a friend of ours," but I had already seen Donnie Brasco. So I knew what that meant. I just sat quietly. But when they introduced me, they usually say, "This is Mickey. He's my guy. He's a friend of mine. He's capable." That's the only word I ever heard was capable. And that means everything from you can trust him. And I also heard I was there when he introduced me to a lot of guys, he said, "Let me tell you something about this guy with him $1,500 is $1,500, not 1499 not 1501." And I shook everybody's hand.
[00:19:49] So when I say enforcer, that's just to let people know, because if I said, "Yeah, we were capable. I was a capable employee." They wouldn't know what I was talking about. So I used the term enforcer. But when I was pimping — it's like when you get associated with certain people and they depend on you, when I'm making so much money in pimping, I really don't need that anymore, but I can't tell them no, because down the line, when I need certain permits passed or whatever, I can make a phone call. So it was almost like charity work at a certain point. You go from where you need that to survive. And that's who you are to when I elevated past that, it's like, "Can you do me a favor?" I don't do those kinds of favors anymore. You know, I drive a Mercedes, man. I got nine women living with me. "Yeah. But I need you to put this on — the all black on again." I'm like, "Oh God damn," so, but I have to do it.
[00:20:37] Jordan Harbinger: Why do you have to do it?
[00:20:38] Mickey Royal: Because that will forever burn that bridge. And there's other things that come across that bridge. So that's like me paying my fee to be a part of that group, which I didn't need anymore at that time. But they had certain connections that I don't have. So it's like, "Okay, let me bring my auntie or fruitcake for Christmas because I know graduation is coming up and I do want that brand new sweater." So technically that five-dollar fruitcake bought you a $60 sweater. But you don't feel like going over there. You don't feel like sitting there with them. You don't feel like them pinching your cheeks, but if you want that sweater for graduation, I suggest you go over there and just take a deep breath and take your pinches. I have moved past that at that point. But even in my late 30s, I still had to keep ties because it was good relations.
[00:21:26] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, you kind of have to maintain your rep and also not disappoint people. And I guess if they're calling you for that, you know, that they've already tried other avenues and they don't really, like they're in a pinch. So you're buying some social capital, some goodwill with these guys.
[00:21:39] Mickey Royal: Yeah. Not being directly one of them. It's like how America sometimes. They say America goes into Guam. No, we didn't — American didn't go into Guam, Blackwater went into Guam. They just went in with American guns and American money. It's like mission impossible. But if you're caught, we never met you. We didn't authorize this and you're going to prison. But if you don't get caught, we have more work for you.
[00:22:02] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. So mercenary work.
[00:22:03] Mickey Royal: But you know the risks before you go in, we know you, but we don't know you.
[00:22:07] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. That makes sense.
[00:22:08] Mickey Royal: And by the time I got in with my Hollywood parties and my women and the call girl rings and stuff, I really wasn't doing that anymore. You know, only for certain people. And I'm like, "I know some guys." "No, no, we don't know them. We don't trust them. We trust you." I'm like, "Damn."
[00:22:24] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Yeah. Well, there's some stories in the book of like guys bugging your, your women and chasing them down, stalking them. And they don't, like they start their car one day and that's the last time they start their car. Right? Like that kind of thing.
[00:22:36] Mickey Royal: Yeah. Well that was my business. You know, that was a things I had to take care of. And you know, and I did my business to the fullest. You know, some guys that window dresses, you get a lot of that on television. You know, the guy with the pink hat and the girls will cross it. That's not really reality. It's a good Hollywood narrative.
[00:22:54] Jordan Harbinger: I mean you do have a crushed velvet hat though, right? It's just not pink.
[00:22:58] Mickey Royal: The vanity.
[00:22:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:22:59] Mickey Royal: The vanity. I mean, you see me in line at the store with GQ magazine under my arm. It's like my mother told me one time, she said, "How are you still alive?" And I said, "I know, funny, huh?" Because she was like, "I can't believe it." She said, "You live in this warped, imaginary world of blaxploitation movies." She said, "But your prison time is real. Your scars are real. You're actually doing these things, but it's like, I'm watching Shaft on a movie, because I didn't go by there much."
[00:23:24] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:23:25] Mickey Royal: And I said, "I don't know." I just my thing is I never said no, because when you go mingle with certain people during the conversation and opportunity is going to arise. And whether I knew how to do it or not, I always say, "I'll take care of it for you." And then when I walk away, I'm like, "Why did I agree to that? I've never done that before. I have no idea how to do that," but I did it and it became — I mean, you just keep saying yes. Like at any job when you're there and they say, "Can you work the so-and-so computer." "Yeah. Like a Samsonite gorilla trying to open a suitcase. Yeah, sure." But you say to them, "I can work it," and then you go over there and YouTube how to work it. But then after a couple of weeks you're actually working it. And they're like, "This is our top computer analyst," and I'm like, "Actually I'm an ex-con who was in high school for six years, but yeah, I'm a top computer analyst, yeah." "Well, we need you over here at such and such. Would you mind working for so-and-so. It pays double." "Yeah. I can do that." And then you get there and you just keep going and going and going. Next thing you know, you're meeting with wise guys and stuff and I'm like, "I'm from Inglewood, California. How did I get this far?" I just kept saying yes.
[00:24:26] Jordan Harbinger: Tell me about Al-Ossrah. So you mentioned this in one of the books. It's hard for me to even keep them. I think it's called Along for the Ride, this book. Is it a black Muslim gang? Is it like Nation of Islam, kind of?
[00:24:37] Mickey Royal: No, Nation is almost more of an organization.
[00:24:40] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:24:41] Mickey Royal: And they're out front. These are just criminals.
[00:24:44] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:24:45] Mickey Royal: I will say a Muslim mafia is primarily black, but you do have a few Palestinians and things like that for international connections, they're underground. I don't like to talk about them too much.
[00:24:54] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:24:54] Mickey Royal: But they're there, but not there, you know, but make no mistake. They're not an organization about helping kids or anything like that. Their heroin traffic is primarily. And like I said, I don't like to talk about them too much, but you have a lot of organizations like that. You have one called the Swahili family, which is basically Africans. You'll see them in LA all the time. They have these outdated suits. They drive a Mercedes about 30 years old. They have wild hair that they don't comb. They have these out-of-date ties. They look like they're from the '60s and '70s. And they have a lot of money. They have Nigerian oil, this, that, and the other, and they look so out of date and all you have to do is to be born in Africa. So you have Kenyans, you have Mau-Mau, Ashantis in there. You have Watusi, you have Zulus. They're just Africans in America, immigrants, just like no different than Jamaican posses. I also think they exist like almost like the Masons. They're there, but they're not there. They don't have big meetings and things like that. And they choose you, you don't choose them. I knew a member when I see one, but if you see maybe five members in your life, it'll be a miracle. They're really extremely underground. But they wear suits that maybe your grandfather threw away a long time ago and they have these, you'll see them always in Mercedes, but the Mercedes are like from 82, 86. I'm not lying to you. And you see that all the time.
[00:26:16] Jordan Harbinger: Why? Just because that's what's in fashion and they're in their organization?
[00:26:20] Mickey Royal: Probably, or that's just their signature. You see them all the time. And right now they're heavy into white collar stuff.
[00:26:29] Jordan Harbinger: You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest Mickey Royal. We'll be right back.
[00:26:34] This episode is sponsored in part by Burrow furniture. Burrow is setting a new standard in furniture with easy to move modular designs. These are always helpful, by the way. You can take everything apart, move around. Timeless American, mid century and contemporary Scandinavian styles and premium durable materials like responsibly forested hardwood, top grain Italian leather, and reinforced metal hardware. In case you want your house to look like the Apple store. No, seriously, this stuff looks awesome. We have it in our own house, but it is a little Apple store-ish. It depends on your aesthetic. There's a lot of pressure when it comes to picking the right furniture for your space. If you've got like an eight floor walkup and a narrow staircase, kind of brutal. Burrow has tons of options for you, no matter what your space looks like. Free shipping on every order, no matter how small or large.
[00:27:12] Jen Harbinger: Thanks again to Burrow for supporting the show. Listeners can get $75 off their first order at burrow.com/jhs. That's burrow, B-U-R-R-O-W.com/J-H-S for $75 off, burrow.com/jhs.
[00:27:26] Jordan Harbinger: This episode is also sponsored by apartments.com. Who needs a change of scenery right now? Everyone in the world. So it's good that apartments.com has the most listings anywhere. We're not just talking about apartments, but houses, townhomes, condos, and all matter of domiciles from the oh-so-cozy to the did-I-just-hear-an-echo-in-here and with 3D virtual tours, you can search for your special somewhere from anywhere, like while pretending to pay attention on a conference call to stretch those fingers across a keyboard and change your scenery on apartments.com. The most popular place to find a place.
[00:27:59] And now back to Mickey Royal on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:28:03] Because you got to sell a sh*t load of cocaine, which is even the highest margin stuff. And it's all — I had a couple FBI agents and gold smuggler experts on here and they say the same thing. They say, if you get caught with two grams of cocaine, you're going to jail. But if you get caught with a stolen painting or an artifact, you just say that it's yours and you produce something that you printed off and your inkjet printer that says that it is, and the customs guys are like whatever. And that's worth three million dollars and your cocaine is worth 150 bucks.
[00:28:33] Mickey Royal: Right. So I mean, their thing is fraud.
[00:28:36] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:28:36] Mickey Royal: You know, I'm sure you've gotten emails before to say one of your Nigerian relatives just died. And if you send them $1,500, they can release a gazillion to you.
[00:28:45] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I'm going to head over there next month. I got a prince who's trying to be friends with me. Right? I've got my flights booked.
[00:28:50] Mickey Royal: Yeah. I mean, you know, that's pretty much what they do now. I don't worry about it. I started so early and I'm so trusted in a lot of groups. I just, you know, I am what I am.
[00:29:01] Jordan Harbinger: So you start to get the Royal and there are many stories. I'm skipping over a lot. So people who are sort of interested in this can read the books. And again, we will link to those in the show notes. I plowed through like three books in one weekend because I was just — you know, it reads like fiction, I'll say that. I know you call it faction where you change a lot of the details. So people don't go to prison.
[00:29:19] Mickey Royal: Yeah, mainly me.
[00:29:22] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. That's wise. Whoever told you to do that, that was probably a good lawyer.
[00:29:26] Mickey Royal: Yeah.
[00:29:27] Jordan Harbinger: Change the date, change the name, change everything, so that we can credibly claim you don't really know what you're talking about. And this was all made up.
[00:29:33] Mickey Royal: Even though I have pictures, but—
[00:29:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, forget that part though. Those are well hidden except for the ones that are in the book. So you start — how did you end up with the name Mickey Royal? Because a lot of people are going to go, that's not a Russian name. That wasn't the Russian name that you mentioned at the top of the show.
[00:29:49] Mickey Royal: Well, my first name is Mikhail, like Gorbachev, like Baryshnikov. And my last name is Turkish. It's Sharif. And you know how you're in America and they're going to give you a nickname. I don't care how long your nickname is, which we'll call it. They're going to give you what. You know, like, "My name is Shaquille O'Neal." "Okay. I'll call you Shaq around here and that's going to be your name from now." Because why? "Shaquille is too God dang long. It's just too much for me to think about and try to pronounce your name as Shaq." So people were calling me Mick because I don't like when people call me Mikel. My name has three syllables Mikhail, not mi-kel. It's three syllables. So when they started calling me Mick, I liked that better because you can't screw that up. And when people hear, "Hey Mick, come here." "Hey Mick, Mick." Gorgeous has started calling me, she just assumed Mick meant Mickey.
[00:30:37] Jordan Harbinger: Gorgeous has one of the women that you started — what is the proper term here? I don't want to be, you know, what do you call it?
[00:30:43] Mickey Royal: You can't say that turned out because she was already in the life. So she was actually my turn out because it's only two ways into the pimp life, the pimp game, either through an older pimp, lets you in and teaches you or an older prostitute lets you in and teaches you. You, as an amateur pimp, can't just have an amateur prostitute and enter the pimp game. You guys don't both end up dead, in prison, or broke very soon. Someone has to teach you. Now, you can come in through a woman or you can come in through a man. A lot come in through a man, they have an older mentor. I had an older mentor in that game, but the intricacies and the details that came from Gorgeous, she was almost 20 years my senior, and she had been doing this a long time back when I was playing with toys. She actually danced on Soul Train in 1982. I can send you the clip of her dancing on Soul Train. And I'm like, "You know, I was 10 years old when you were doing that." And sometimes she'll say something like, "What year was that?" She was like, "That was back in '74, '75." "You know, it was three," and she'd go, "God, dang, you're just a baby." But what was my original or are we talking about?
[00:31:43] Jordan Harbinger: So it was Gorgeous is her name and she couldn't pronounce your name, right?
[00:31:46] Mickey Royal: She couldn't pronounce my name and don't butcher my name. And she kept saying Mick, but the other girls would hear her say Mic. And of course, being in America, they assume Mic is short for Mickey. So they started calling me Mickey, this Mickey that, Mickey, Mickey, Mick. And she asked me, "Do you mind if we call you Mickey? Because that Mic, whatever, is too hard to pronounce." I said, "I don't care what you call me. Call me anything but collect. Okay." And she said, "What's your last name?" and I told her Sharif and she said, "What does that mean in English?" I said, "It's Turkish." But she said, "What does it mean?" I said, "It means royalty." And she said, "So an English name is Mick Royalty, Mickey Royalty." And they started laughing. Mickey Royalty to me and she said, "Mickey Royal." She said, "That's your name from now? That sounds better. Mickey Royal." And I was like, "Don't you call me — I liked that." And when people ask me, "What's Mickey Royal?" I just say, "It's just my real name in English." And that's what I went by ever since.
[00:32:42] Jordan Harbinger: So you get in the Royal family together, which is a great name for a group of anything for that matter. The book reads, it's like they're setting up a fortune 500 company, right? Like I've got a lot of entrepreneurs and founders on the show and there's stories from the — well, not your stories that you're telling now, but the stories you mentioned in the book about setting up the business, it's very similar. So I'm thinking, "Man, I'm going to hear this guy on some NPR show about how, you know, you started the mattress company, except it's a totally different kind of company." You've got your adult photo shoots, you've got escorts or whatever the euphemism is. You've got after hours clubs. You've got, I think at one time gambling and things like that. I mean, you had a lot of different verticals and a lot of different properties and a lot of different business arrangements staff. I mean, you had all kinds of, there were like management issues you were dealing with. You had managers. I mean, it's really like an interesting parallel that shows me how — I don't want to blow too much smoke up your ass, but like how intelligent you are. Like, you didn't go, "Yeah, screw it. I'm going to make a bunch of money and buy bottle service everywhere." It was like, "We're investing in this, we're taking this money, we're putting it over here. I'm giving this to the account manager. She's going to invest and do this and take her percentage." Like you are not winging this sh*t at all, not at all.
[00:33:56] Mickey Royal: I mean, like I say, in the book, The Pimp Game, it's a universal law of transference, which is mathematics. And anything you learned along the way you take with you. You come into it the way I knew it. Like I say, television has a narrative of what pimps are and they put them all in one monolith. That's actually not true. You know, you have coaches like Bobby Knight who will choke his players, literally on the sideline. And then you have coaches like Phil Jackson, who will pull out Buddhist scripts and start talking about Zen management. Now, they're both champions and they're both coaches, but they're nothing alike.
[00:34:29] So once you know who you are, you do things your way. So I set it up the way I would set up any drunk family, any mattress company, it is the same exact structure. And we were producing movies. I did over 500 adult films. I mean, I've done them for Hustler. I've done it for Gentleman's, Cinderella. I kept the activities going to where they can work around the clock. They made money too. You know, traditionally pimps keep all the money and to me that's just a bully or an extortionist. I said, I'm not doing all the work. And how much fun is this if she can't get rich too? So I said, no. I modeled it myself after Charlie's Angels. Do you remember the movie, Planet of the Apes, the new ones?
[00:35:09] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Yeah. Sure.
[00:35:10] Mickey Royal: Okay. Remember when Caesar was trying to organize the apes and when he first got captured and the orangutan, he was a little smart like Caesar, and he said, "Caesar, they're not going to organize. And you're wasting your time." And Cesar said, "Why I'm trying so hard with them." He said, "Because apes are stupid." In the very next scene, what did Caesar do? He made them smarter, he got the thing and he gave them all what he had. Now, he can organize them.
[00:35:38] So as long as we are on corners, as long as we're doing this, and as long as I'm keeping you stupid, we can only rise so far. If we want to rise to a certain level, then what's the next level? I must make you smarter. So they were all managers in and of themselves. And when I did that, things just multiplied. And you found out that they had talents that you didn't know, they had. I'm like, "Really, you have a degree in marketing? Really, you were a paralegal. Really, you manage three restaurants before you did pornography?" We need to all sit at the table and we tend to all put our best qualifications forward and see how we can all work off with each other and how we can build something really, really big here.So my model myself after Charlie's Angels, not Iceberg Slim.
[00:36:24] Jordan Harbinger: This is fascinating. Iceberg Slim is a famous pimp for people who don't know. He wrote book that is, it's got a lot of, kind of interesting manipulation tactics in it, and I'm not sure how else to phrase it. But as far as I know though, he also died broke as hell. Like he didn't have anything.
[00:36:40] Mickey Royal: Most of it, because I tell people in any game, you can only rise to the level of your intelligence. The Pimp Game Instructional Guide is more like an inkblot test. It can pull out the innate, which is in you, but it can only add gasoline to your flame. You have to strike the match. So a moron who goes into the pimp game is still a moron. You know, money does not raise the IQ. So if you're a genius and you can't get any other opportunities elsewhere and you go into the drug game and you get, or any other illegal business where there's nowhere it's not regulated and you get a chance to really flourish, it's not that you're a great drug dealer. It's just the fact that you have 140 IQ and you never got a chance to show that. You would've done the same at Chrysler too if they had hired you. You take your brain with you.
[00:37:30] And I remember one thing an old wise guy told me that I was doing porn films for him. He said, "I want you to keep in mind something." And I said, "What?" He said, "You have to make a lot more money selling pictures of naked women than you ever will selling naked women." He said, "Think about that really, really hard," because he was transitioning me into pornography. "So I want you to think about that." He said, "There isn't a pimp alive or high-class call girl ring alive that makes more money selling women naked than we actually do selling women on film naked." He said, "We're a billion dollar industry and there's no sex involved. There's just a DVD." He said, "Think about that." He said, "Don't add young man, multiply," because he was in the 70s and I'm at the time late 20s, early 30s. He said, "Don't add, multiply." And he put his arm around me. He said, "If you're going to do business with us, you're going to have to do business like us." So he was more so — people say, "Y'all had a father-son relationship." I said, "No, it was actually a grandfather-grandson relationship." He was more so a teacher as we were working, I was working for him, but he would come in, "Let me show you something, let me teach you this." And you have to be humble enough to listen and learn. And anything I learned, I take back over there with me. So I kind of weaned myself— you know, I kind of kept thinking about Hugh Hefner. He made a lot more money selling pictures of naked than guys make selling naked women. Can you imagine that?
[00:38:56] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, it does make sense, right? Because it scales better. And which is kind of what he was trying to say, right?
[00:39:01] Mickey Royal: Yeah.
[00:39:01] Jordan Harbinger: Like you can't really scale — if you're trading time for money, you can only scale that so much because you only have so much time. But now if you're talking about printing things off and mailing them out, or now, nowadays it's all digital, it scales infinitely—
[00:39:14] Mickey Royal: Exactly.
[00:39:14] Jordan Harbinger: You know, given the inputs anyway. So look, it sounds like it reads like such an interesting business, but a lot of people are going to ask me, "Hey, doesn't this gloss over the downside of these women's existence," right? Like a lot of what you're talking about, it's like, "Oh, it's a lion pride, all of our heads together," but there's definitely a downside to being sold for money or selling yourself for money. And people are going to say, "Well, this guy enabled these women and they were all damaged as a result." What do you say to people who would accuse you or alleged things like that?
[00:39:46] Mickey Royal: I would say they're right. There was a downside to anything. I mean, you can play football all of your life and you can make a lot of money and you win the Heisman trophy and you want a couple of Super Bowls and everybody's praising you. But see, they don't see at night about the concussions. They don't see the nightmares. They don't see the fact that you can't get out of bed because you have two broken vertebrae in your back and they want to penalize you for getting addicted to painkillers. But without painkillers, they couldn't even do that certain interview because they've been trying to get dressed for two hours. So that's the part you don't see. I liked that movie North Dallas Forty, because it shows that part. So I tell people money, yes; infamous, yes; power, yes. They said, "But it costs," and they always ask me, "What did it cost you?" I said, "Everything else, everything else." Some relationships with your child, you don't have time to do both. So it can be your relationship with your children. It could be time. Sometimes there's penitentiary involved. So yes there is — and the psychological effect.
[00:40:45] I haven't been with a non-porn star since I was 26 years old. I was married. Before my ex wife is a former porn star. When we got divorced, I've been with a former porn star for 15, 16, 17 years. In between there, when we had our breakups, that was another former porn star. So between prostitutes and porn stars, other than my high school, sweetheart, that's all I've had. So when it comes to talking to women at Walmart, it has reconditioned your mind to the point where all you see are angles, numbers, because you've been in that so long and you can develop a PTSD to where your mind has been reconditioned like a soldier.
[00:41:25] I imagine a soldier who had been on the battlefield for 30 years, not three 30 years. And now all of a sudden, someone bumps him at the 99 Cent store. He's not going to respond. He just got off the battlefield. He's not going to respond the same way a normal guy would. He hasn't learned that type of normal life diplomacy yet. So I tell people, soldiers don't carry handcuffs. They don't detain. They just killed. That's it. They don't have — like I say, SWAT teams show up and surrender because they don't have handcuffs. They don't have a squad car to put you in. They just have snipers. When they start setting up the perimeter, just come outside with your hands up because they're not going to miss. They're not going to miss. And it's 50 of them. So that's when the jig is up.
[00:42:08] But yes, it does have a deep psychological effect. And the only way to avoid the effects is to stay there.
[00:42:14] Jordan Harbinger: Is to stay in the industry, you mean?
[00:42:16] Mickey Royal: In the game, it is hard to make that transition. Even the woman I told you who lives in the $11 million. I said, "Do you cook?" She said, "I have a staff." She said, "I have two kitchens in my home." I said, "Ooh." And I know where she's from, so I know how this must feel for her. And she has two children with her and I said, "Do you clean up?" She said, "Again, I have a staff for that too." and I said, "Are you very happy?" She said, "I'm very happy." She said, "But I'm bored out of my effing mind." I said, "I know you are." I said, "But this is the right thing. You know, I've never lied to you." I said, "I'm happy for you. And I'm proud of you. This is the right thing." And she said, "I know," because we're older now. She's in her 40s. She's like, "I know."
[00:42:56] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, she's set now. And she's safe now. And she's got a family now. And so boredom is like, it's a luxury item.
[00:43:06] Mickey Royal: Yeah. But I asked her one time — because we don't talk much once a year, but I try to stay away from her because I don't want anything to bleed. I'm not going to mess that up.
[00:43:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:43:15] Mickey Royal: And I say, we just got quiet one time, and I said, "You ever miss it?" And she said, "Every day."
[00:43:21] Jordan Harbinger: Hmm.
[00:43:22] Mickey Royal: And then we just hang up. We don't talk more than 20, 30 seconds because I don't even want my number in her caller ID. You know, I'm not going to mess that up for you. You know?
[00:43:30] Jordan Harbinger: Interesting. So you mentioned in the book, you say that you have to cut contact with family and friends like outside the life friends. One of the things you said is, "You must step above your flock so they can look up to you." But it does seem like you're damaging yourself and those around you, not just the women that you work with, but it's like, okay, if you're in a happy family, it sounds like you wouldn't want to do this because it wouldn't be worth it. Right? Like you might not — how do you feel about having traded the relationship with your kids to do this?
[00:43:57] Mickey Royal: I told a story on Facebook. I think they put it best. I was with Cheyanne Foxx and two other ladies who were at the 24-Hour Fitness on [Slosson] and they were feeding me grapes and sitting all in my lap. So it was like 10 o'clock at night. It looked like a softcore porn scene. "Oh daddy, oh daddy." Rub it all over my face. And the other guys who just had their mouths open, like, "How does this guy do it?" And they were inviting women who walked past, "Would you like to join us?" And when they got out to the hot tub and they went into the women's locker room, I was going into the steam room. And one — it was an older gentleman, kind of tall, kind of heavyset, and this was in my late 20s. He said, "Youngster, when I die, I want to come back as you." And I started laughing. And he said, "Man, I've been married 32 years. Let me take my old ass home to my wife, my kids, and my grandkids." And then when he was walking away, I slapped him on his arm, I said, "Hey, when I die, I want to come back as you." And we just stared at each other and he understood what I meant and I just walked into the steam room.
[00:44:55] So yes, it's a big sacrifice. Sometimes when you look back on it, the more you gain on one side, the more you lose on the other side. And time only takes one way. You know, my son will be 28 this year and I remember — you know, during the period in the book the five years in Fremont?
[00:45:12] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Oh yeah.
[00:45:13] Mickey Royal: Yeah. When he was born and I remember being a dad, I remember changing diapers and I remember sitting up with him with colic and I remember walking the floor with him because he had this thing about heat and motion. So I had to put them in the backseat of my car, put him in the car seat. I had to turn the heater on until he's almost sweating. And I had to drive for long distances on the freeway. And right when he fell asleep, I would get off the freeway and come back. As soon as I laid him down in his crib, "Eeh," and I'm like, "Oh, God please, I got to go to work in three hours." Because at that time I tried to have a normal life and I was working a normal job and doing normal things. And the allure was just too strong. I couldn't do it. I said, "I'm losing in this world. I'm a winner in the other world." In order for my son to go to private schools, which he did, his tuition was like 700 a month. In order for him to go to UCLA and do all of these things, I have to go. And I pay for those things and I pay for Aminah's first BA and her master's. Her second master's, she has a PhD now, by the way.
[00:46:10] Jordan Harbinger: This is your ex-wife who gave birth to your son?
[00:46:13] Mickey Royal: We weren't married. You can go ahead and say it. You can go ahead and say it. I'm not offended. My baby mama is a doctor.
[00:46:18] Jordan Harbinger: You weren't married? I didn't know that. I wasn't sure.
[00:46:20] Mickey Royal: No.
[00:46:21] Jordan Harbinger: So baby mama.
[00:46:22] Mickey Royal: We were going to, we were going to, and by the time we got to the point where — it wasn't a money issue. I don't know what it was, but by the time we were going to, we didn't really want to be married to each other anymore.
[00:46:33] Jordan Harbinger: So, okay.
[00:46:33] Mickey Royal: And what woman wants to marry an active pimp?
[00:46:37] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, it seems tricky. Like, especially you said she's a doctor, so that's—
[00:46:41] Mickey Royal: Yeah, she's a PhD doctor now.
[00:46:43] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. So that could be complicated. And you already had the kid, so it's like, "Do we need to add complication to this particular scenario?" So the life was too strong and you realize to provide for your kid, you had to do this, but it's interesting. You say you are a winner in one life, but not winning in the other life. And that, that had to be tough, but obviously, it seems like you wanted to win. What do you call it? The straight and narrow, but it just wasn't working out.
[00:47:07] Mickey Royal: I can tell you a little secret. All of us do. There's only one world. All of us do. The only reason there's an underworld is because they can't function well in the world. So you create a world. And the pimp game is not really the underworld. It has one foot in the world, but I call it the shadow world. It exists right in broad daylight. You don't know what you're looking at. I told, not you or I remember that when we went out there at night and all the women were half dressed, I'm sure you've probably seen the clips and stuff.
[00:47:33] Jordan Harbinger: I did.
[00:47:33] Mickey Royal: She said, "I drive down the street everyday going to work and they're not out here." I said, "Yes, they are. They're even more so out here in the day. You don't know what you're looking at." I said, "Oh, they're naked at night. During the daytime, she has on jeans and she's holding a cell phone or she's pushing a baby carriage." I said, "But if you look closer, it's a stuffed animal in that baby carriage. If you look close to those girls on the bus stop, they're going to let bus after bus pass by. See they're in and out of Burger King. You don't see them because they have jeans on. They might wear a backpack, but if you look close that woman's 26 years old wearing a Hello Kitty backpack." I said, "She's out here in the daytime. You don't recognize them. They are fully clothed in a day. And walking back and forth on cell phones. And they're standing there by the taco stand, but they're not ordering tacos. They're standing there." I said, "I know what I'm looking at because I've been doing this for almost three decades."
[00:48:22] And I said, "You just don't know what you're looking at but the customers, they know." Clients they're looking at. It's not a mistake. I said, "If you watched that girl on a bus stop, watch a bus after bus pass by when they pass by, she's still sitting there." And I said, "She's fully clothed dresses down to her ankles. No she's working. At night is when they take off the clothes." I said, "I know it seems backwards."
[00:48:45] Jordan Harbinger: It does. Yeah.
[00:48:46] Mickey Royal: But at night it's decriminalized and more acceptable. If you're going to be in the daytime, you got to understand, children are walking down the street, people are going to work. So their camouflage in order to let business flow. You know, and if you notice, like in the book, I was only on the corners for maybe a year or two. Because anything sold on the corner is cheap and devalued, I don't care. If it's a brand new 50-inch screen television that goes for $200, if you're selling it, if you tell me you just stole it from Walmart and you're selling on the street, not giving you more than 50 bucks for it. Why? Because it's on the street. It's out of your trunk. But if you take the same item and you take it to Macy's, well, now it's $500. The item didn't change. Just the location of where the item is sold has changed. So once I noticed that and I started — I made most of my money in that life. Other than pornography, I made most of my money in that life from in-call bordellos even more so than, what they call high-class call girls because that's all out call. They come to you. That's why they call them call girls because you're calling them.
[00:49:48] In-call bordellos where I will set up the house. I would always have one more lady than it was bedrooms. So if I have a four-bedroom house, there's five ladies in there. I put two houses in the book, but at one time I had six. Some of these were apartments, but I call them stores. I would say, "Let's get in and get the store open. And technically I had no place to live. I had clothes at some of these places, but there was no place I could find peace. I would go to the bowling alley, sit there and watch people play bowl or go to the gym. I had clothes at different places. I have cars parked there, but I didn't really have a bedroom because if I'm sleeping in a bedroom and all of a sudden two women are going to use this bedroom for work and live here. I'm going to relinquish that bedroom because that bedroom is going to make me thousands of dollars a day. It's not going to make me any money sitting there. And you get to the point where you got four houses, two luxury apartments, and you're sleeping on a relative's couches because you have nowhere to go, just to have peace, just — okay. I want to read a book one day. I can't read in those houses. We got customers coming in and out. I have no peace anywhere, you don't sleep. So you're surviving off energy drinks and cocaine.
[00:50:54] Jordan Harbinger: This is The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest Mickey Royal. We'll be right back.
[00:50:58] This episode is sponsored in part by Nuun. When you work up a sweat from say, practicing your TikTok dance, or from doing 10,000 steps a day like I do, the steps, not the dance, you lose vital electrolytes and minerals that your body needs in order to keep moving and recover efficiently. Nuun Sport is optimized for hydration and mineral replacement before, during, and after a workout. Just drop a fizzy tablet into your water bottle to support your hydration, anytime, anywhere. So handy at concerts and festivals or on trips abroad, where you're drinking a little more beer than you are water. Nuun Sport is made with only one gram of sugar and carefully sourced premium ingredients that are certified non-GMO, gluten-free, and vegan. Available in 13 delicious flavors, including fan favorite cherry limeade, which has an extra boost of caffeine for those particularly tough mornings, I mean, workouts
[00:51:41] Jen Harbinger: To get your game changing hydration, visit N-U-U-N.life/jordan and enter code Jordan for 25 percent off your first one.
[00:51:49] Jordan Harbinger: This episode is also sponsored by Zelle. Zelle is a great way to send money to family and friends, no matter where they bank in the United States. These days I travel light. I don't even carry a wallet, much less cash. I use Jen as my wallet now because she has a purse, pro-tip. Zell is easy and fast. I paid back a friend using Zelle. One of our friends got engaged, so we use Zelle to quickly send them a little honeymoon fund and you don't have to download yet another stinking app because it's most likely already in your banking app, since it's in over a thousand different banking apps already. The money goes straight to the recipient's bank account, typically in minutes between enrolled users. So look for Zelle in your banking app today.
[00:52:21] This episode is also sponsored in part by Progressive. Progressive helps you get a great rate on car insurance even if it's not with them. They have this nifty comparison tool that puts rates side-by-side. So you choose a rate and coverage that works for you. So if you're interested in lowering your rate on your car insurance, visit progressive.com, get a quote with all the coverage you want. See Progressive's rate and their tool would provide options from other companies as well, all lined up and easy to compare so that all you have to do is choose the rate and coverage you like. Progressive gives you options so you can make the best choice for you. You could be looking forward to saving money in the very near future. More money for a pizza oven, some furniture you can carry upstairs. Get a quote today at progressive.com. It's just one small step you can do today that can make a big impact on your budget tomorrow.
[00:53:01] Jen Harbinger: Progressive Casualty Insurance Company and affiliates. Comparison rates not available in all states or situations. Prices vary based on how you buy.
[00:53:08] Jordan Harbinger: Thanks so much for listening to the show, your support of this show keeps us going. And of course, if you want to help us out by buying something from a sponsor, we put all those codes in one place. jordanharbinger.com/deals is where you can find them. They're all on that page. So please consider supporting those who support us.
[00:53:24] Don't forget we've got worksheets for many episodes, not all but many of the show. If you want some of the drills and exercises talked about during these episodes, those are in one easy place. And that link is in the show notes at jordanharbinger.com/podcast.
[00:53:37] And now for the conclusion of part one with Mickey Royal.
[00:53:42] I mean, you told me earlier that you try not to sleep at all.
[00:53:45] Mickey Royal: Oh no, it wasn't that hard for me. I sleep maybe every 48 to 72 hours and I don't call it sleep. I crashed. I usually end up in my clothes. I'm on the couch. I'm where the last place. I fell asleep in my car one time.
[00:53:56] Jordan Harbinger: Why? You can tell us about that. You mentioned it a little bit off here. You said you try not to sleep, right? So you're constantly drinking energy drinks and trying to stay up and not fall asleep.
[00:54:06] Mickey Royal: Several reasons PTSD — I mean, we're being honest here, right? I'm always honest.
[00:54:10] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:54:11] Mickey Royal: PTSD, nightmares, some things. I don't have a problem with things I did direct. I mean, if we're playing chess and your piece gets removed, that's just the game. I have a problem with collateral damage and innocence that was affected by my direct action. And I live with that all the time. I can laugh. I can smile. I can play music. But like Cher said, if I could turn back time, you know, but time takes one way. What do I do? I don't like sleeping because when I close my eyes, it's traumatic nightmares. My fiance, she has nightmares. And I have to hold her in her sleep sometimes. And she told me, she said, "I have the reoccurring dream." And she said, "This hulking figure in all black is trying to hurt me, rape me, kill me. And he strangling me." And she said, "Right before I die, this other hulking figure busts through the wall wearing like a sweater tied around his neck, looking like a preppy.
[00:55:15] Jordan Harbinger: Carlton Banks?
[00:55:16] Mickey Royal: Carlton Banks. Yes. And she said, "And they have this duel to the death." And she said, "The Carlton Banks guy wins. And he picks me up in his arms and he walks off." And I got mad. And I said, "Who's this guy that comes to save you, that I need to go beat up that you care about more than me."
[00:55:31] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:55:32] Mickey Royal: She said, "It's you.". And I said, "Who's the guy trying to kill you?" She said, "It's you." She said, "You're trying to kill me. And then you come save me." She said, "There's two different sides conflicting with you." I said, "That's why you'd be kicking this stuff in mind." She said, "Yeah, I have nightmares about both sides of you, because I've seen both sides of you."
[00:55:52] Jordan Harbinger: Have you ever heard The Parable of the Wolves? I think it's called — I don't know if that's what it's called, but I think it's a native American parable where an old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. "A fight is going on inside me," he said to the boy. "It's a terrible fight. And it's between two wolves. One is evil. He is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego." He continued, "The other is good. He's joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you and inside every other person too." The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, "Which Wolf will win?" And the old Cherokee replied, "The one you feed."
[00:56:41] Mickey Royal: Yeah. Yeah. Sounds familiar with that. My mentor told me that one. People would think my mentor was a pimp. He was at one time, but at the time I met him, he was a minister and he was a pure of heart minister. We would do a lot of Star Wars dialogue with each other. And he has daughters. I remember one time I was going to take his daughter and her friend. They were like 16. I was in my mid 20s. I said, "I'll take you guys to Disneyland if you want. I'll just be a chaperone." They said, "Okay."
[00:57:11] Jordan Harbinger: That's interesting. Like, why do you think he sort of allowed you to be around his kids? It seems like that would be kind of scary. If I'm a minister and I've got kids and there's a guy who's like a pimp or gangster or both. And he's like around my kids, I would be a little nervous about that.
[00:57:28] Mickey Royal: Well, he knew me in school. He was also my history teacher.
[00:57:32] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:57:33] Mickey Royal: And I was the last person to talk to him before he passed away. He passed away in 2018. So we're talking about a long relationship.
[00:57:39] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. That's a long relationship.
[00:57:40] Mickey Royal: He's watched all of this. He saw me as a student of philosophy and things like that. He saw where I had one foot in one foot out and all that. He knew when I was doing the pornography and the gamble house, all of that. He got a chance to witness all of this growth. When he wrote me, when I was in prison. Ironically, I went to prison, saving a woman's life. You know I do one good thing and now I've got to go away.
[00:58:07] Jordan Harbinger: What was that? What happened there?
[00:58:08] Mickey Royal: A woman with going to visit a friend of hers, a woman that I knew, and she, you know, you go to an apartment complex and they have assigned parking. She parked in someone's assigned parking. Now, I don't know how that led up to physical violence, but it was three guys and two girls beating her up and she barely got to her car. The guys had gotten so worked up. They were trying to do things to her and she texted me and she called me.
[00:58:32] Jordan Harbinger: You say, do things, you mean like it turned into a sexual assault basically.
[00:58:36] Mickey Royal: In front of people.
[00:58:37] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:58:38] Mickey Royal: I mean, it wasn't like they were the only ones there and they were somewhere in secret. There were people. And these were young guys and they had guns. Two of them had guns that I saw physically. Now, when she called me, I was laying with two women. I had no shirt on. I had these froufrou pajama pants on. If I showed them to you, you'd laugh. And I put my black trench coat on and I didn't have a gun at the time because I was on felony probation for another violent attack. And I didn't want to assault or whatever, because I didn't want to violate myself. So I didn't have any guns in the house. I grabbed the cleaver from a left hand and a butcher's knife and I put them up and you can see them. I had them up my sleeves. And keep in mind, I have several black belts when I walked up and I saw that she was in the car with the door locked and they were standing around laughing and they exposed their guns to me.
[00:59:27] And she yelled out the window trying to beat — because I'm only 5' 7". I guess she felt empowered now that I showed up and keep in mind, I have these pajama pants on looking like a stark raving lunatic. And she said, "Now say hello to my little friend," like that. And I remember once saying, "What are you going to do?" and he pulled out his gun to show me, but I knew from experience. I don't expose what I have until I'm about to use it. So I had them in my hands cuffed by the time they slid into my hands and he could raise it up. That hand was gone. I'm moving, I'm skilled at this. So the three gentlemen, I didn't touch the girls. And they're the ones who called on me and the police were there like 45 seconds. They steal my car. The police take two hours to show up. Now, you want to show up in 45 seconds. Okay. But I'm covered in blood. I'm holding two knives. They're on the ground. They left an ambulance as I left in the police. And I didn't see my fiance again for five and a half years.
[01:00:19] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[01:00:19] Mickey Royal: But I didn't regret it. I mean, I went to prison with a smile on my face because I said, "Yes, I'm being punished, but I did the right thing." And I told the judge, "It was the right thing to do." And she said, "I would love for you to date my daughter. I know that she would be protected." And she said, "What you did was noble, but stupid." I said, "Yeah, that's my autobiography, Your Honor." I had her laughing. I said, "But I had to protect her." She said, "You didn't protect her. She was already in the car. And the incident took place. You got revenge for her." And I said, "Touché, that's exactly what I did." Sometimes we need to balance things out. I said, "Your Honor, I'll feel bad." And she gave me actually the minimum, because I was looking at 15 to life. But I don't think so because my change out of the life had come before this incident. I was living an Ozzie and Harriet lifestyle as much as I could at that time. But bullies are my trigger.
[01:01:09] Jordan Harbinger: What does Ozzie and Harriet lifestyle? I'm not familiar with that term? Does that just mean normal?
[01:01:14] Mickey Royal: The Brady Bunch. It's a synonym for typical 1950s American life. "Hello, honey. How are you? Fine, housewife. I go to work. I read the paper."
[01:01:25] Jordan Harbinger: Look in the book. There was never, and this could have been sort of like you selectively editing, but it sounds like you don't use physical force to control the women that you work with. You call that gorilla pimping and you say, "Not only do I not want to do that. I don't need to do that."
[01:01:42] Mickey Royal: I don't want to do it. I don't need to do it. And to me again, that's my trigger. To me, it just seems like being a bully. Like gorilla pimp to me is just a bully and an extortionist. I can do that too. I can find someone smaller than me, punch him in the stomach and take his money. There's no psychological to that. I'm really against that. Now was it forceful? I meant what I said. And like, I used to tell him I don't raise my voice. I don't raise my hand, but I don't repeat myself. I mean what I say. And coming out of an enforcer background, if you know anything about me with some of them, did they know that I'm not going to ask you twice? Not going to repeat myself, but I'm not going to raise my voice either. So really hear — I don't care if it's giggling behind it, really understand that I don't say anything to make decrees. Now that doesn't mean that you can't talk back, but I found there were more progress and cooperation.
[01:02:37] So no, I never used physical force. And anytime a woman actually wanted to leave, which very few did I always gave him quite a bit to go with, but I didn't have to do that because I wasn't taking everything. So they had their own money. A lot of them didn't live at the house. I said, "Whenever you were at the house, you were at work. But if you want to have something else on the side or live over here—" So a lot of them got a chance to have what we call square life, but regular life. And they would say, "Honey, I'm going to work." And they would come here for 12, 14 hours, which is not constant work. You don't have customers like that, but the prices they charge, they could make several thousand dollars a day on a good day, but they're working five days a week. So that turns into quite a bit. And I tell somebody, I said, "Sometimes I'm going from 35 percent. Sometimes I have 50 percent." Usually it's 50 because I didn't see, I was doing all of the work, so why should I take all the money? That's not fair. And at the end of the day, I'm going to be fair, but no, I never had to threaten or anything like that.
[01:03:34] Jordan Harbinger: The question is then why do they need you at all? Like, why give you any of the money? Right? It looks like they're doing all the work. I know from reading the book, like you have a business manager role, you're managing the properties. You're taking care of the money. That money has to be laundered for lack of a euphemism, right? It has to be cleaned up so it can be spent and put into properties and investments. And you're handling all of that. But I think a lot of people will go, "Well, why can't she do that? Why can't they do that?"
[01:03:58] Mickey Royal: The same reason Mike Tyson might have Cus D'Amato in his corner. Cus D'Amato's not getting hit. So why is he splitting so much with his trainer so that he can just box? I mean, can you imagine if he had to train himself, he had to do the spit bucket. He had to do the water. He had to do the stretching. He had to call the promoters. He had to book the venue. He had to do all of these things. He's probably going to get knocked out when he gets in the ring. And the activity level, your job is to solidify the family. My job is to expand. It's like a stair. You go across this way. That's solidification. This way is expansion. Solidify again, expansion, solidify again. I said, that's how we climb the stairs. So I brought them the pornography connection. I brought them the high class clients. I had to constantly keep doing this. "Oh, you have magazine shoots. We were in Black Tail, Big Black Butt, Juggs.
[01:04:52] Jordan Harbinger: I did see a bunch of Black Tail magazine covers when I was Googling because I was like, "Oh, who's this? What's this person look like?" Cover of Black Tail magazine. I'm like, how do I mention on the show that I now have like a bunch of — if my wife uses my computer, she's going to be like, "I typed in black looking for a black armoire and it auto completed to Black Tail." And it was like, "You already clicked on this page 13 times in the last week. What are you doing?"
[01:05:15] Mickey Royal: And that's his job. Now, unfortunately, a lot of people in the pimp game, they do use violence and they don't do a job. All they do is bully girls to get out on the corners or to go wherever they're working, they take all of their money. They manipulate them. And when they become smart enough to realize they're manipulated, that's when the violence starts and that's not what I did. And that gives an ugly look to what it is that I actually did. And I actually was much more successful than them. If you see me in pictures of my ladies, they're smiling and giggling. Some people can't get their wives to go along with certain things. I said, I lived in a house with nine women at one time. How do you think you get nine women to go along and work with each other? Share one individual man for one complete cost. There was no jealousy in between them. There was no envy. There was no — well, sometimes someone had more time with me than others and they didn't want to have to share their time, but it was never really a serious conflict because they saw themselves as sisters.
[01:06:14] And you have to actually do it. If you say you're doing it and you're not doing it, then you're just a liar. But when they see you actually protect them, when they see you actually come back and go, "I just got USC bachelor party." They're paying a thousand per girl up front and tips and everything is being split equally. But like I told someone, any illegal venture you're going to, you have to have at least one to two legal ventures you're going to, because at that time, when they were receiving checks for me, it didn't say from the game. It said from so-and-so video store, which we had an adult bookstore at the time, or so-and-so this or this laundry mat or consultant fees for X, Y, and Z. It's just that she gets paid a lot to consult and anyone that they brought in, because I didn't just take anybody. If someone's personality wasn't conducive to our family structure, I told more women no than I did yes. I said, "Because you're a troublemaker," or she's messy or she lacks experience. And a lot of these women are big porn stars. And I said, "You're not conducive to what we're doing. I'm sorry. I could refer you somewhere and I'll get you as much work as I can, but you can't be with us over here."
[01:07:24] You know, a lot of money was made in swing parties and voyeur parties. Oh, the voyeur parties, jeez, those are nice. They were almost like what they call black tie affairs and you rent a house that has a patio with the sliding glass door and you move the furniture out and he makes that a bedroom and you sit up there and you have drinks and cocktails and dinner because you're using the kitchen also. And your women are walking around in lingerie and then we pull the curtain back and all of these couples, usually over 50 and very professional and they come bring their chairs closer and they actually get to watch two and three scene shows. We closed the intermission, they paid a lot of money to see this. So we did those weekly. Those are perfectly legal. Swing part is perfectly legal. We did those almost every other night, different ones in different sections.
[01:08:11] There were some that were so highfalutin, you know, the woman, Charlotte, I couldn't go to myself, you know, she would just, "I need you to come pick this back up." So we would take the bag and didn't divvy up. And everybody got fed, even though people that weren't involved, they might only get three percent, five percent. She might get 50, but their extra percentage came out of mine, you know? So we look back on it sometimes with smiles, I'm not going to make it seem like it was all hunky-dory, some rough things along the edges. Sometimes, especially at USC bachelor parties, I'm saying USC on purpose because that actually happened. Sometimes testosterone and alcohol don't mix and naked women are involved. And you're in a room full of guys who were about 6"6" 300 and something pounds and they're 19. So they have a lot of youth. So sometimes you have to bring friends with you and bring toys with you to let them understand that you don't own these women.
[01:09:02] So most of my — it was violent, yes, but my violence was directed towards people who directed violence towards my family. And once they became my family, I internalized anything that they went through. So if they come home and they had a problem, then I'm about to go deal with it. And most of the time it turned out from my favor. Sometime it didn't, I'm not going to say I want all of these exchanges but the fact that I got up and did that and their fathers never did, their brothers never did, their mothers never did, the boyfriends they had never did, I did, so you put each other in a different higher light. But as far as forcing women, yeah, a lot of guys do that. You have organizations that do that. It's the difference between a pimp, a human trafficker. I used to pass out my cards at police stations. I went on to say, "I'm a manager of adult entertainers." And he kept looking at me, like this was in my twenties, he was like, "You've lost your mind." This was during the Gorgeous era. I just didn't put it in there. And he slid it back to me.He's like, "Get out of here," and this was on King Boulevard. I think they're called Southwest division. And I gave it back to him and I said, "We do bachelor parties. We have swing parties, voyeur parties." And he kept pushing it, like, "Get out of here." So I just put it on the desk and I walked off, put it on the little counter.
[01:10:11] And people were praising me. Like, "Man, you crazy?" I did the same with the fire department. Then about 13 weeks later, the phone rang. And it was, you know, an officer and he said, his brother is getting married. "Were you just joking? Or do you really have—?" Because my business card had pictures of women's faces all on the front and back and their bodies. He said, "Do you really have these girls?" He said, "This is just the bachelor party now."
[01:10:34] Jordan Harbinger: "Nothing illegal because I'm a police officer. Can't be doing illegal things.
[01:10:38] Mickey Royal: "It'd be full of cops." I said, "Are you going to do any background checks? Because half of these girls got warrants." And he said, "No background checks. We just need some dancers and some hostesses." And I said, "Yeah." And I told him the price because I know they all got good money that you're all employed. So I know that it went from there and you pass out more cards. So at the houses, a lot of law enforcement were customers. I got arrested by one, on an unrelated charge, you know, and he was apologizing to me. I said, "Man, do your job." "Am I still welcome at the house?" and said, "This has nothing to do with that." And when I got to county jail, I remember him giving me a bag of burritos. And I said, "Stop giving me stuff in front of everybody else. You make me look like a rat." I said, "Throw me on the ground, punch me or something. I got a reputation to keep." So I shared the burritos with everybody in there.
[01:11:25] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. He comes by and he's like, "Quit looking at me, scumbag. Call me on Friday when you get out of here.
[01:11:30] Mickey Royal: He said, "I can still come?" I said, "Of course you can. You can't come by empty handed, but of course, you can." It's not like he's messing me for doing something that he approved of. This had nothing. He just happened to be the guy to show up.
[01:11:42] Jordan Harbinger: Well, yeah, that's how it works. I suppose.
[01:11:44] Mickey Royal: I appreciate the cuffs are loose.
[01:11:46] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I don't get punched in the face at the back of the car for no reason or something like that.
[01:11:53] Here's a sample of my interview with Amanda Knox, who was coerced into wrongfully confessing that she was at the scene of her roommate's grisly murder without being made aware of her rights or being given access to a lawyer. Here's a quick look inside.
[01:12:06] Amanda Knox: I was 20 years old. I was studying abroad in Italy. The day after Halloween, I came home to find a murder scene. The cops arrived. They break down my roommate's door and find her body there. And for the next five days, I was at the disposal and mercy of the police officers who unbeknownst to me had targeted me as a person of interest.
[01:12:39] My thought was to just take direction. I did what I was told and what I was told was by the police to come in every day for questioning. And I sat for hours and hours and hours and hours. I often worried that maybe the reason that they were upset or short with me was because I just speaking Italian well enough. I thought that was the reason why they kept asking me questions over and over and over again. No matter how many ways I answered the same question, they never seemed happy with it. I just sort of submitted myself to what was ultimately a very coercive interrogation technique that culminated with an overnight interrogation and broke me.
[01:13:29] I was made to believe that the reason they were upset with me was because I didn't remember correctly. I realized that the truth didn't matter and that I couldn't count on the truth to save me. People believed it. I was convicted. I spent four years in prison.
[01:13:54] Jordan Harbinger: Amanda Knox joins us to discuss how she put her life back together and how she lives with a residue of tabloid infamy, even after being acquitted of this terrible crime. For more including why it's not uncommon for an innocent person to give a false confession to a skilled interrogator, check out episode 386 on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:14:14] That's it for part one, we'll be back with part two in a couple of days, links to all of Mickey Royal's stuff will be linked in the show notes. Please use our website links if you buy books from any authors you hear on the show, it does help support the show. Worksheets for the episodes are in the show notes. Transcripts are in the show notes. There's a video of the interview going up on YouTube at jordanharbinger.com/youtube. Don't forget we've got our clips channel with cuts that don't make it to the show, highlights, things you can't see anywhere. jordanharbinger.com/clips is where you can find that. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on both Twitter and Instagram, or you can hit me on LinkedIn.
[01:14:46] I'm teaching you how to connect with great people and manage relationships, using systems and tiny habits. The same ones that I use to book guests on the show, to do business, all that. That course is free. It's over at jordanharbinger.com/course. I'm teaching you how to dig the well before you get thirsty. Most of the guests on the show, they subscribe to the course. Come join us, you'll be in smart company where you belong.
[01:15:07] The show is created in association with PodcastOne. My amazing team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Millie Ocampo, Ian Baird, Josh Ballard and Gabriel Mizrahi. Remember, we rise by lifting others. The fee for this show is that you share it with friends when you find something useful or interesting. If you know somebody who's interested in the shadow world, human trafficking, true crime, share this episode with them. Hopefully, you find something great in every episode. So please do share the show with those you care about. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you next time.
[01:15:43] This episode is sponsored in part by Stacking Benjamins podcast. Stacking Benjamins has been called the best personal finance podcast, probably by the guys that run it. But you know, there are good guys. I like them. If you want to stay up to date on the latest headlines, like how Robinhood has lied again to investors, or how to avoid having to sue your advisor like that 96-year-old grandma who sued her grandson for churning her account for commissions. They call it the greatest money show on earth because again, you never know what's coming next. You'll also hear about George Washington as an entrepreneur, around round table dive in how to make more money when nobody around you is, and a discussion with the guys who broke the Cannonball Run record driving illegally faster than anyone from New York to LA. Some great lessons in that one on the importance of planning and attention to detail. It's light, it's fun, and Joe's mom's neighbor, Doug, even supplies trivia. Listen to the show wherever you're listening to us here, or head to stackingbenjamins.com. The Stacking Benjamins Show, the greatest money show on earth.
Sign up to receive email updates
Enter your name and email address below and I'll send you periodic updates about the podcast.