The Eighth Page

Steve the Regurgitator you had me at blahglagg

Over the course of the year, a few great names have graced the stages of Phillips Academy. We danced the night away to the sizzling reggae beats of Hot like Fire. We quacked like ducks and kissed our neighbors at the feet of the hypnotist. But this weekend we did not dance, and we certainly kept our lips to ourselves as the greatest entertainer of all performed in Kemper Auditorium. His name: Steve the Regurgitator. The man sucks, and swallows, and grunts, and vomits… for money! I got a chance to sit down with Stevie Starr himself, and got to know the man behind the circus act. Samuel Weiss: How would you describe ‘what you do?’ Steve the Regurgitator: I swallow things and… this is when it gets exciting… I vomit them back up! SW: So I’ve heard. I have noticed that you wear the same black leather vest for every show. Is it a fashion statement? A good luck charm? StR: I like to think that it’s a little bit of both. It’s a fashion statement in that I think that the sight of my belly really enhances the show. I mean, it takes a lot of purging to keep up this bod. I suppose that it’s a ‘lucky vest’ in that most objects have indeed come back up… except for that katana I swallowed in Japan. Well, that makes air travel tricky! SW: So you throw up and wear a black leather vest for a living… has anyone ever compared you to Britney Spears? StR: I think that if Britney were a chain-smoking, middle-aged, Scottish man, that we would be very similar. SW: Well I suppose she isn’t Scottish… In any case, do you have any ‘pre-game’ rituals that help you get in the mood to regurgitate? StR: Well like any master of his craft, I have to warm my body up. First I gargle with salt water, and then there’s this massage parlor where I like to get the $10.00 full-body special. I then do headstands, just to keep the stomach guessing. I then listen to Holland-Dozier’s classic single, What Goes up Must Come Down and do some preliminary regurgitations…simple stuff like baby mice and safety scissors. SW: Sounds like quite a regimented warm-up. Would you say that regurgitation is a viable career choice? What would you say to those who disagree with your lifestyle, writing your life’s work off as a ‘freak show’? StR: I doubt that any of those naysayers hold a Guiness World Record, or have ever sustained a lacerated esophagus. Frankly, I question the validity of any career that doesn’t challenge the stomach. SW: Do your parents still love you? StR: Is it a good sign that I’m not invited to Christmas anymore? SW: It’s good for the Christmas ornaments.