Steve Wardrip Interviews Himself
I’M A CARDINAL FROM KENTUCKY WHO IS NOW A NORTHERN MOCKINGBIRD FROM FLORIDA AS A MODERN DAY SNOWBIRD.
— STEVE WARDRIP
Hi, I’m Steve Wardrip. I’d like to ask myself a few questions. I am requiring myself to answer all the questions truthfully and to the best of my ability. Without malice or contempt. Ill will perhaps, but only when other measures are futile. There is one other thing… I will ask tough questions and get good answers.
Where there is truth, there remains a trail to that truth, a path that can be followed again and again.
Interviewer: Hello Steve! I want to personally welcome you to the interview.
Steve: Hi I’m, we’re glad to be here.
Yeah, haha, us too!
Let’s both start at the same time. OK”
Interviewer: Okay! First off, we want to congratulate you on all of your accomplishments. You are an achiever and have done many things in your lifetime. I want to ask you what area you’ve enjoyed the most in your life?
Steve: The area I enjoy most in my life is not an experience. It’s a feeling. Let me say that again, It’s a feeling, not an experience. Thank God for things to do, places to go, people to meet, things to discover and see, things to learn, things that surprise, things that enable you to grow and explore… but also thankful for feelings, emotions, the gut. That’s what I’ve enjoyed most, the gut feelings. Family, Friends, Traveling, Discovery, Music, Literature, Art, Performance, Nature, Metaphysics, Business, Spirituality… Every variety has been offered up and served with zest. I am honored to be living in my own feelings. This means the most to me. This is what I’ve enjoyed the most. I enjoy my gut.
Interviewer: Could you enlighten us on your intentions?
Steve: I can. That is a good place to start, “I can.” Yes, I can and you can too! Anybody can!
“You can do it when you put your mind to it. You’ve got the power, You’ve got the will. You can see from the top of the hill. You can do it”
Interviewer: So you are saying a positive attitude is what you strive for?
Steve: Not only do I strive for one, I rely on one to live When I get out of sync my king goes ary. That is to say, when I’m out of sync with the Universe, I don’t make quality decisions. I lack in vital areas in confusion. It’s like a top spinning on a table. It spins great until it slows down and loses momentum and then it clumsily falls to the ground. A positive attitude is essential to survival. Sometimes facts don’t matter. Sometimes a gut attitude is all you need to succeed. Sometimes, no! All the time… a positive attitude is necessary.
Interviewer: Thinking back, what would you say your biggest hangups were or still are?
Steve: Hangups? Haha! You mean Pinups? Haha! I’ve had a few of those. wonder what happened to them? Hmmm… Hangups, well, definitely sex, too little, too much, wrong place, wrong time, wrong person, hangups, yes, regrets, yes, longings, yes, what could have, should have been, all the above, check yes, hangups. Hang ups… vanity… that about says it all… trying to be something I’m not or not being someone I am. It’s all under the lid until the lid blows off and then it’s hangup time. When it gets to be getting in the way of progress, it’s a hangup. I generally like to hangup on hangups. They are a hindrance to good livin’. I have some pet peeves though. Don’t leave the cabinet doors open! I’ll throw a hissy fit if you do. Some food combinations are repulsive when I must sit and watch. Some smells are repugnant. Some people are disgusting. I even met a dog I didn’t like. I’ll go so far as to say I’ve killed men with my writing, several, in fact. Several want to kill me, but they are trying to convince me to do the killing when they should be doing themselves in. hehehe I’m not killing anybody, but if they read my story and they go out and do it, they are acting on their own behalf and if there ever was a disclaimer, let this be it, I am not responsible for what some nut does after reading my nutty poems, stories goings on, nope, not my fault. I write the words. The words are interpreted by the reader and we all go on our merry way. Some go to the fancy ball and some go to work shovelling manure, while some even jump off a cliff holding a feather, expecting to fly like a falcon. Judge not by words, judge by actions. You’ll see, it’s what you do with what you are taught, not what destruction you bring. Always build up to a higher standard. Reaching that next plateau is what my hangup is.
Interviewer: What are some downright weird things that have happened ro you?
Steve: You mean accomplishments? I kept a twelve year old from dying, once. I was a backstage hand in the annual production of the seasonal “Nutcracker” held at our nice state-of-the-art performing arts center. I was in charge of holding the ropes on the rail and rigging up a swing seat to swing a twelve year old girl in a ballerina outfit on. All was well with the help of some volunteers the theater had provided. I had two assistants to help me hoist the little girl up twenty feet in the air, hold her there for a song and slowly lower her back down to the stage floor. The first guy was called away to perform another backstage task. The doctor volunteer that was with me started telling jokes, like, “She came to you for spiritual advice… and all you DID WAS GIVE HER WAS YOUR JOHNSON!”, HAHAHA, HEE HEE, HO, HO… SO THAT’S WHAT HE DID….. MEANWHILE BACK AR THE RANCH, I HELD THIS LITTLE GIRLS LIFE IN MY HANDS IN THAT ROPE. AS FATE WOULD HAVE IT, THE DOCTOR LET GO AND TOOK OFF MUMBLING SOMETHING ABOUT SHOW BUSINESS… INTO THE DARK… AS I WAS LEFT DANGLING, ALL TWO HUNDRED AND THIRTY POUNDS OF ME, FEET OFF THE FLOOR, CLINGING TO THE ROPE AND THE LITTLE GIRLS LIFE. I STARTED MAKING SOUNDS AND GOT SOME GUYS ATTENTION WHO CAME AND HELPED ME GET HER SAFELY BACK TO THE GROUND. A NEAR DISASTER. BUT IF THAT’S WHAT YOU MEAN BY WEIRD THINGS… THAT WAS A WEIRD THING. a DOCTOR! HAHAHA
There are plenty more weird things. I have lived the life of three men or more in my life time. I have stories… Plenty of stories.
- The time a snake crawled into my sleeping bag with me.
- The time I hitchhiked through a race riot.
- The time I was trampled by a crowd getting Led Zeppelin tickets in Chicago.
- The time I was detained for Marijuana smuggling in Portland, Oregon.(which had just decriminalized it and when I said I had cancer, the Captain apologized and said let’s get him on his way!)
- The time I was standing on the roof in Florida near Cape Canaveral and the shuttle Challenger blew up before my very eyes.
- I collected volcanic dust from Mr. St. Helens and flew it back to Kentucky, bagged it and sold it by the ounce.
- I incited a riot in a Milwaukee College by performing a DeeJay show and screaming “Let’s get crazy!” on the P.A. System really loud and the table and chairs started flying! It was a wild scene and the Dean was not happy with me. He asked me why I did it. I replied, “How do you control your students, anyway?” We made a truce to never come back.
- When I was a rock star, we trashed hotels. We bribed the staff with drugs and money, girls and booze. We were crazy wild haired funny dress hellions who were living life in the edge. We had fun. Once a guy who had just got out of prison knew how to pick locks, so he opened every door on the 12th floor of the hotel. We invited the town to come to party. We bribed the staff to steal food and serve it and they did so in steamer tables and trays. Open bar, prime rib, filet mignon, shrimp, seafood, lobster, the works, we wined, we dined, we swilled, we broke into the tv broadcasting booth and video taped it and almost aired some of it but were unfortunately caught by the security guards who we eventually got drunk and i think one even took some acid. Anyway, we had fun and the next few days, we had to leave town because of a police investigation. We were never charged and it was all written off as a loss. We knew we made a mess, so we left a giant tip for the maids in the shape of a giant peace sign, hundreds of dollars in bills and change and a note, “Please split it up among all the cool people who helped throw the party. Peace, Love and Party! We’ll see you farther on down the road!”
- Parties… yes many, arrested at some, some we not fun parties, some got out of hand, turned violent or were so disgustingly fake people, and some were unique experiences that could never be put into words or videotaped and understood. You just had to be there to be part of the party. I love those kinds of parties in real time that can’t be recorded. Let’s party!
What is the one thing, you’ve done that you are grateful for?
When I was walking two miles a day with my dog every morning through the park’s nature trails, I started discovering Bible Tracts lying around on the park benches. As I was nearing the exit one day, a guy came up to me and asked how it was with my soul. I told him that spiritually I was fine but that I was worried about my son’s seemingly humanistic/atheist approach to any spiritual life. I told him of my concerns for my son’s life physical, mental and spiritual. He said his son was the same way. He said a prayer and asked God to intervene. It was very soon after that that the birth of my one and only Granddaughter happened. I called it a miracle then. I call it a miracle now. I am grateful for this miraculous occurrence. I’ve seen her three times and I’m hoping for a fourth before I die.
We understand you’ve been battling Colon Cancer Stage IV for three years now. How has that affected you?
It’s a part of life, dying. We all go through that one way or another. I suppose I can find solace in knowing what will stop my body from functioning. How would you view it? That’s a good question from me because you won’t know the answer until you have the same diagnosis. It, perhaps, will give you something to think about in case it happens to you. I’m one of those who thought it only happened to others. Wrong, it happened to me and it can happen to you. You asked how it affected me. It has affected every aspect of my life. Everything must consider cancer now. All plans have to be made considering it. Prepare for 6 months they said, to a year, to two years, to living a long time… Prepare for all scenarios is what the Cancer Educator told me of my inoperable cancer illness disease. How has it affected me? How does it affect everything? With the same destructive tendencies as it displays with almost every turn. Why do I say almost? Because cancer has been sent into remission and people are cancer free. I have been before and I will be again. Alive or dead, I will be cancer free. Not afraid of death, I just want to enjoy more living… whether it be before or after death or both! I want to live forever and I think I will. Perhaps having cancer has strengthened the reality of my own mortality and in doing so made me more complete and real in a complete and real Universe which I think is the real mind of God. I think everything, start to finish is the thought of God, the mind of God who manifested everything there is. The Power of His Principality is unfathomable. Thank God! My specific spirituality is private, as I think it should be a silent connection between you and Your God. When I only talk with God, no other is influencing me. I learned early on that true prayer is done in private. I know it’s me interviewing me and I will respect you in the same way, let’s keep our communication with God personal and private and surely goodness will follow us all the days of our lives. Amen.
I still feel like discussing cancer. “I love you but you’ve got to go.” is my motto. The very notification that you have cancer changes everything for you and also everyone you know who finds out. When you tell a stranger, they cringe. You cringe too.
From here, you’ll get no sob story, no holy epiphany, no rant, complaints, cures, explanations, diagnosis or recommendations for others with cancer, nor avoiding getting it. What you will get is how it feels to me. I liken it to a disease that hits trees, virus or fungus that starts destruction. It shows up out of nowhere naturally and attacks without any reason known to us. It just happens. You always think it just happens to other people. Wrong it happens to us, not all of us.
Pizer writes that: “the strong, the shrewd, and the cunning shall prevail when … life is bestial”
That’s what’s going on, how I deal with it. You would deal with it in your own way. You might want to think of that, or not, but either way, it’s a possibility that it could happen to you , too. Just saying.
It has affected every fiber of my being. Everything. It changes everything, everything. I made a mental list of what it changed and how it’s still changing things. Some things are intensified, others, numbed down. Some amplified, some muted.
Guess what? I’m still in charge, believe it or not. Through the crud, the insults, the redneck explosions of people who don’t deal too well with their feelings and thoughts, I am still at the helm of my mighty ship. Idiots would take the wheel if I let them. My pilot house is locked, with only me as Captain. Yes, I have navigators (Guardian Angels) who guide me through the worst of storms. I assure you, this ship and Captain might go down someday, but if she does, it will not be without good navigation. I run a tight ship and will not be steered off course by someone wanting to lay siege to the charter. In fact, it is nothing like their festered minds are construing. Not only will I not participate in their coop, I will disassociate myself from the lot of naysayers. List me as an independent agent, representing myself in all fields of endeavor. I am a creator and I write my own contracts. You don’t have to sign, but I already have and it is bond for deed in the truest legal sense. You have no unalienable rights in my court and it is well advised you or anyone never go there. It is a private confidentially secret place you or anyone has no admittance to. I sincerely hope you have such a fortress at your command also. I think everyone should have one. So, put the battering rams away, they are useless. I am the King of my Kingdom and sometimes I take questions. Next?
What do you do with your time?
Steve: I own, edit and publish a magazine started in 2003 named Rosine Magazine. I create other publications online. I have thousands of readers, around 6600 followers to date, over 5000 facebook friends, over 1100 twitter followers and nearly 600 followers on medium.com/@stevewardrip. I write every morning when first waking up. I play music every day. I play bass guitar in bands. I sing, write and perform. There are private relationships I keep private. There are many people I love and many people who love me. I spend time with them all if possible. I own property that consists of forest, roads, trees, tools, lumber, houses, storage, campgrounds, trails, hunting management, permits, licenses, taxes, contracts, payments, deeds, bonds, real estate insurance, legalities, sales, survey maps, plats, natural resource management, environmental concerns, local, state, federal and international laws to be concerned with, poachers, thieves, vandals, illegal hunters, strangers, trespassers, druggies, drunks, hillbillies and various forms of idiots who think there are no laws in the woods. Wrong! In the Kingdom of Wardrippa, you have no tights and vigilante justice is the modus operandi. Do not trespass. Trespassers will be violated. I read. I write. I paint. I hike. I camp. I smoke. I drink. I eat. I dance. I, I, I…. what do you do? There are 23 “I’s” in this paragraph. You owe me 23 things you do with your time.
Okay. Here’s 27 things I do:
Interview people, usually about music history.
I practice playing 6-string electric and acoustic guitar and play bass guitar every day.
I record songs I wrote and cover tunes others have written.
I rehearse by myself and with other musicians.
I want to bring my “A” game to the music scene.
I converse with friends all over the world, discussing everything.
There are times when I need to be around people.
Sometimes I need solitude.
I enjoy my trips to other cities, states and countries.
I create new business ideas and put some of my ideas in place.
I am the world’s worst cook, but I try anyway, creating inedible experiments.
I work on cars even though I despise it.
I mow the lawn, weed eat, vacuum, wash dishes, cars, houses, paint, repair, fix, destroy, wash clothes, and take our trash.
I barter, buy, trade and sell.
I work for peanuts.
I give value for free.
I research many items before commenting on them.
I am interactive on the internet, participating in a plethora of interests.
I am privately charitable. I am the recipient of charity on several fronts and am grateful.
I party with the right people and usually alone.
I spend private time with my partner.
I spend private time with my mother.
I spend private time spiritually.
I never accept money for work or income because the government would take away my Social Security check if I did, so, I don’t, ever, never, nada, not, no way!
There are twenty nine “I’s” in this paragraph. 6 more than yours!
What do you plan to do with the rest of your life?
Steve: See my Granddaughter Olivia again. It’s been years and she is four. I don’t know how much time I have, another day, week, month, year, years…. I just need to see her to tell her I love her. The rest is spending time in the places I love with the people I love. I’m moving, as a snowbird to Florida. I am making a habit of visiting there, staying in campgrounds and at friends houses with the intention of moving. I bought, through the generosity of an old friend, an RV motorcoach. It’s an older one, needs a little work and a place to park. So far that has been the premise of my visits, twice in six months. I’m going back every month for two weeks if I can. Every two weeks, fly back and forth to Florida until it becomes one way or the other and at that time I will establish residency. Until then it’s snowbird yo-yo back and forth as a Kentuckian. I found a wonderful campground RV park near the sea. My little house by the sea, how romantic! Love better, Live better. Maybe I can write better. Maybe the medical community is better. Maybe I will discover something new. I play music and the music plays me. Maybe the music will play better.
Maybe witnessing the sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean is as good a reason to live as any other reason on Earth or in Heaven.
Nah, not maybe…. for certain. For certain. For certain. And fishing off a pier, I might like to try that. And walking through the nature trails by the brackish swamps and diverse birds and wildlife in the bright, hot and glaring sunshine. I might like that… and live music on the beach… and seafood… and herbs… and the occasional festive drink… a kiss in the moonlite… a kiss in the day… a kiss to wash all my troubles away… a kiss of a new day… a kiss from far far away… a kiss… anyway I can get one… a kiss. I want to kiss all my family and friends. And a huge (((((BIG HUG!))))) Maybe even a kiss from my Olivia.
What will I kiss? The ground that I spent thirty five years buying, to do what with? I don’t know, but I kiss it because it took care of me and I took care of it. I will kiss the beach sand and I will hug and kiss myself, for I am no greater or lesser than any kiss deserving entity. We all deserve a kiss. Muwaaaah!
Any final comment?
Steve: What it boils down to is that we don’t own anything, but everything owns us because we are an integral part of the Universe, no greater, no smaller, not more powerful and not weaker. We are one with the one. Dig? When you talk about family, it is not a separate thing, family is Universal, we, and everything are family. We are family, all my sisters, brothers and me. All the everything there is… is my family. God made everything and is the father of our family. Thank You God.