Mike Francesa was gone and then he was back. Francesa ended his WFAN good-bye tour on Dec. 15 of last year, but in April, it was announced he would be returning to WFAN. On May 1, he was back on the air, entertaining New Yorkers during the afternoon drive segment. In June, ThePostGame caught up with Francesa before he appeared on a Thuzio panel in New York City with Tiki Barber. Francesa gave some background into his decision to go back to his old job, how his approach has changed (using Twitter now) and what his fans mean to him.

ThePostGame: You're back on the scene now. Was there a pivotal moment that you decided "You know what, time to go back to the FAN"?
MIKE FRANCESA: No, it really didn't happen that way. It was more about some of the other businesses we were doing for a while. I had started a partnership with CAA [Creative Artists Agency]. We decided to bring a broadcast partner into the event. It turned out to be Entercom. We had talked to a bunch of other companies and when I started negotiating with Entercom, the guy who owns it said, "You know, I'd really like a part of this to be you come back to the FAN." We started to talk about it and I didn't really think it would happen, and one thing led to another, and there I am. So a lot of people have speculated for a lot of reasons why it happened. Really, it wasn't any more complicated than the guy who bought FAN – among his many radio stations that he bought from CBS – really wanted to get me back on the air on FAN and he pushed very hard for that, a guy named David Field, and that's really what happened.

TPG: One thing that you kind of spoke to me – you were on Katie Nolan's podcast a couple years ago.
FRANCESA: Oh yeah, I remember that.

TPG: You told her that if you were young, you would get on Twitter, you would get on social media, you'd have to do that. Well, now you're back, you didn't get younger, believe it or not, but you're on Twitter and you're more engaged. Why is that?
FRANCESA: Well, basically the Twitter is again part of the whole process. Twitter entered a negotiation with us that I will deal with the app. They gave us some special considerations and for that, one of the things they wanted was for me to have a Twitter account. I don't have a fully operational one yet, but I do send out some tweets. I haven't done a lot of the other parts of it yet. I will expand it. I will put some different things on there, but right now, I’ve made about 100 tweets. That's all I've done, so it's not fully operational, but it will be by the fall and that was part of the negotiations with Twitter, who were very good to us about a lot of things and I really liked them. I liked their building. I really got a kick out of the people there, so it was an interesting experience, it really was.

TPG: You're watching sports, probably the Yankees or Mets, something good happens, something bad happens. When are you more inclined to grab your phone and tweet?
FRANCESA: I mean, really, something bad. Something good, you know in our business, negative sells far more quickly and more emphatically than positive because positive is great, but what are you gonna say? "Gee, great, fantastic." Negative, there's so many aspects to something that's bad, so a Mets slump is gonna get a lot more attention than a Yankees winning streak. It's just the way what we do works because there's so much more emotion and passion in the negative than there is in the positive.

TPG: If you were managing the Mets, would you have more success right now?
FRANCESA: I think it'd be hard. They have a lot of ... see, I don't blame the new manager [Mickey Callaway] for his lack of success. What I do think though is that he has been very underwhelming as a personality and I also think that he's looked somewhat overmatched in his game maneuvers, but really, they are overmatched because physically they don't have a lot of talent right now.

TPG: We know your fans are crazy. How much was it ... them embracing you when you came back, how much have you enjoyed that?
FRANCESA: I mean, I've always had a great relationship with the listeners, with the audience. They've always treated me great, they've always been very passionate, they've always been very faithful. I think I have the best audience. We came back and within one week we were back to first place and we had a ways to come and we made up all that room in one week. So to me, my listeners have been the most loyal people in the world, so I can't say enough about them. They've been great to me.

TPG: Who are you a fan of, right now, in sports media?
FRANCESA: I don't like to single people out because I don't think it's fair. I have friends in the business, but they're getting older now. Jim Nantz and I are very close. Mike Breen and I are very close. I have some friends in the business, so I'd say those guys more than anything else, but they've been around now a long time.

TPG: And have you ever actually met the pope? Any pope?
FRANCESA: (Laughs) I was at the Garden for Mass, but I was also one of 20,000, so it was not anything special.

TPG: You didn't have a special credential to the pope?
FRANCESA: No, I would've liked that. That would've been nice, but I did actually go to the Mass, which I was very impressed by. That was a very ... I mean you talk about security and you talk about just having the presence of having somebody in the building. I've never seen people on edge as far as a security detail. I mean far more than for a president. I mean it was unbelievable how much painstaking preparation they go to about his arrival and details and stuff. I've never seen anything like it. It far outweighs anything you've ever seen for a politician.

TPG: If you ever meet the actual pope what will you say?
FRANCESA: I don't expect that to even be something I would even have to consider.

-- Follow Jeff Eisenband on Twitter @JeffEisenband. Like Jeff Eisenband on Facebook.