Here below is an original interview I had with Peter Staniforth of UK events magazine. Peter's a big wrestling uk writer/promoter and picked me to do an interview. Here's the original interview which is due to be published on line sometime in the future, a bit streamlined of course..but here it is in its entirety.
April 07 2004
An interview with Peter Staniforth
Peterstaniforth- Tell us about growing up, your childhood.
BLACKWATER-Okay. I was a lil brat. I got into lots of trouble. I was big on sports though and I loved playing football. My "dream" was to play the 'Safety' position on Defense. I love the defense side of football and I still do to this day. I pretend to be a defense coordinator when I am watching football on tv. And I loved to hit people too. My inspirations was Ronnie Lott of the San Fransisco 49ners and Steve Atwater of the Denver Broncos. I hated school, I thought it was a waste of time and I enjoyed going into the library most times and reading the sport pages or books on football. Although my family was poor, I did not have much, I actually thought I had quite a bit and I was happy with what I had. I never complained as food was on the table and a nice roof was over my head. I also did not have many friends. I think that was because we never really had much money to do stuff or go somewhere and my father did not allow friends in our house. I don't know why but he was just that way. I have a younger sister and we always had to have our friends outside the house or we would have to go to their house. Odd I know, but that was our father's wish. I never even got out of the state of Ohio
as our father war really strict on us as kids. We had to be home by 6pm for supper, showers to clean up by 7pm and some tv was allowed between 8-9pm. Usually about 9pm we had to be in bed to get sleep for school. I was never allowed to have friends stay overnight and only on a few ocassions was I allowed to stay out. Truth be told, I know my parents never found out but I snuck out late to dostuff, usually sneaking to the late night movies with friends. I was never allowed to date or go to the prom or dances as well. Yeah, I know, I sounded like a loser but there was nothing I could do about it. I think my father was scared that I would get a girl pregnant at an early age? It was only after my father passed away that I started dating and having a girlfriend. I was most surely a late bloomer on the relationship part of life.
I have had a few girlfriends and quite a few dates here and there but I am still looking for that someone special. But as far as my childhood, it was probably average and maybe a little less since I think I missed out on a lot of really cool stuff. Now thinking back on it, if I could...I would probably try a lot harder in school and make a stronger attempt at getting much better grades.
Peterstaniforth- How did you first discover wrestling?
BLACKWATER-I was little. I think I was 7 or 8 years old. We never had cable tv here. Actually just a cheap attenna pole that got weak reception here. I was able to watch early WWF superstars and I LOVED Saturday Night's Main Event. I still have some of them on tape and watch them periodicly. But to watch any cable wrestling, I had to go up the street to my "Aunt Bessie's house" as she had all the cable channels and that's where I discovered the NWA and Ric Flair and the Four Horseman. I was super intrigued as this wrestling seemed more fun to watch. I actually enjoyed the wrestling over the soap opera stuff and I today still favor the matwork. Most of the time I did not have anyway to watch the pay per view shows, so I had to wait for the video rental release and you can bet I was first in line at my local video store to rent the lastest pay per view. If I really liked a show I would make a copy since I had two vcr's when I was younger. Yes, 2 vcr's but no cable tv. lol. (the vcr's where paid for out of my own pocket doing lawnwork and the such) My dad did not like wrestling cause he thought watching it I would want to do it and get hurt somehow. He was that way about football too. He was sorta right. lol...I think I was mosty intrigued by the good guy versus bad guys element of wrestling too. Of course I loved all the good guys and hated the bad guys and I have to admit I like Hulk
Hogan quite a bit...until I was introduced to the wrestling observer and pro wrestling torch
"dirt sheets" as they were called back then. I had a subscription to the Torch for 10 years and
just recently let it relapse. I had learned quite A LOT about the business side of wrestling
well even before I had first stepped into an actual ring. That's pretty much the story of how I discovered wrestling.
Peterstaniforth- How did you get your break in the business? And who trained you to wrestle?
BLACKWATER-The break in the business is really a strange tale, somewhat. I had been to a WWE(then WWF) house show in Cleveland, Ohio and have been sittin' up high in the upper level seats. A few guys behind me were shouting at some guy who was beating his kid. I am not sure what exactly was happening, but I turned behind me to look and this BIG dude with a HUGE bald head and another rather large guy with HUGE curly long red hair was trying to get this Father Figure guy to stop wailing on his kid. Arena Cops were there and the old guy and his kid were removed from the show. I did not say much but just was intrigued with who these guys were?..they looked like they could have been wrestlers...Later that week, I had just started working at the Super K mart here in Mansifeld Ohio (which has recently been shut down believe it or not) and the store manager was introducing some of the new employees
to the existing employees. Out of nowhere came that same curly red headed guy that had sat behind me at the Cleveland WWF show. After introductions, I went up and talked to him. I found out his name was "Jimmie Lee", his real name and he was a professional wrestler. He had been wrestling for 6 or more years at that time. (the other large bald dude was named Dave "Thunder" Morgan, who had also been wrestling that long of a time and was largely popular in Ohio). Anywase...to make this long story shorter....lol....Jimmie, after a few attempts, introduced me to the A.S.W.A. (American States Wrestling Association) training center in Galion, Ohio and got me to take a chance at a tryout there. When I tried out, there were 4 other guys there. None of them survived with me. I was the only guy who came back time and time again to work on my training. The gym and the company/name was and is still owned by Mike Moffat who is also know and sometimes still wrestles as "Kid Collins"...or "KC Booker"...his haha name as I call it. lol Jimmie had a lil hand in my training but mostly I trained with the other guys there for a few months until I met up with Toby Cline who I worked with when the gym was moved to Shelby, Ohio. I got more info about Toby and I in the next question area..
I did train 9 months, mosty tues/thurs/sat for about 3 to 4 hours each day. Most newbies had to learn everything and until the trainers were sure you had learned enough to do a match in front of a live crowd, you kept on working on your craft. How to do a match and the psychology of a match is super important and something that I had to work on early cause at first I was doing too many highspots in my training session and not slowing down. Its good to work
a crowd up and then bring them down a bit before leveling them upwards again. Later I helped out the newer guys and basically became a trainer.
Peterstaniforth- What was your first match/matches like?
BLACKWATER-My first match was against a guy I met while I was starting my training. Basically we started training each other at the same time and after being told that we had worked well together in the gym that we were booked to have a match against each other which happened on March 31, 1998. My opponents name was Toby Cline and he runs the Indy circuit now as "Mr. Insanity." This was to be my first match and if I am correct, it was his "second" match ever. He has really improved tremendously and I am very happy for him. Our match was really a great time, one that I am proud of having as my debut match. Actually though, I got injured in it as well. I dislocated my right shoulder at the start of the match but continued to wrestle for 11 minutes. I was the heel and he was the hometown hero since he was I believe 4 years younger than I was at the time. Pretty much our match went quite smoothly and from what he and I was told was thee best match on that show. That's an honor for the both of us as we both talk about it some whenever we cross. I went over, cheating obviously as the heel...lol..but I did not want the win. We argured days before on who would win and if I remember correctly, we flipped a coin to decide who would get the win/pin. I came up with the finish. To cheat so he got his heat back. lol. To answer this question, I actually went back and watched the tape of that match, which I had not watched in probably 3 years or more. It's still a good match but now I grumble at stuff because I am so critital about moves and sequences in it. My next few matches were against Jimmie Lee who broke me into the biz and
it was an honor to be in the ring with him. Our match was not a show stealer but it was great fun to still work him at that time in the start of my career in wrestling. I went 2 years wrestling as just myself (meaning no mask and plain black trunks and boots outfit) under the "Blackwater" name but then aqquired the boots and mask about the middle of 2000. I am currently fitting myself for a new outfit with flames and my hair is bright red, which some have said reminds
them of Mikey Whipwreck's look, which I think is pretty cool but I honestly had no intention of stealing his look. As far as the "Blackwater" name and how it came about..Its really not a complicated story..I just saw a sign or exit sign of some sort with the name on it somewhere and just wrote that down. I can't really even remember where I saw it. That pretty much the story on how I came up with it. And yes, wrestlers do sing that damn Doobie Bros song to me at shows sometimes. And yes, it drives me crazy. lol
*important side note* I lost my Mom in a car accident around the start of 1998 and at that time she was so excited about me wrestling, I know she would have loved seeing me in the ring. She was a big wrestling fan and I always teased her and took the bad guys side in matches just to anger her some. Around my neck is a necklace which holds the ring that my Mom used to wear for many years and I wear that as an honor to her life. This will come across as a tad sappy but my Mother was my best friend and I am happy to have had a great Mother as she was.
Peterstaniforth- Where are you based, and what promotions have you wrestled for?
BLACKWATER-First off I am based out of Mansfield, Ohio but I lived in Shelby, Ohio at this very moment. Oh boy, I have wrestled for quite a bunch of Indy feds. I started out obviously with the American States Wrestling Association(ASWA) and I am currently wrestling twice a month with the ACW(American Championship Wrestling). I have wrestled numerous feds in Michigan and in Pennsylvania and once in Chicago. A couple in Kentucky. I can't remember all the feds names cause so much time has passed. I do remember wrestling a match years ago for "Steel City Wrestling" based out of Pennsylvania for a promoter named Norm Conners. I also wrestled for the SWF(SuperSTAR Wrestling Federation) which was based out of Cincinnati, Ohio but has since folded. ICW(Insane Championsiop Wrestling) in Michigan. I have had a few matches with. I am trying to name feds from the top of my head but I think with the older I get, the more I forget. Mostly though I am booked here in Mansfield, Ohio and I wrestle in this
area as much as I can but I am more than able and willing to go anywhere and wrestle as long as I get decent compensation for the travel and match or if its a good cause such as a nonprofit show thats funded for a cause, such as a cancer patient or someone in great need. Those shows are always good to be at. The A.S.W.A. does not run up here as much as it used to which is a pity cause we had a great string going here of getting great crowds...usually about 900 plus and most of them paid which is almost unheard of today on the Indy scene. There are many more Indy feds I have ventured with but I can't name them all at this time. My minds just not that strong these days. lol
Peterstaniforth- Who do you like to watch wrestle?
BLACKWATER-Right now I love watching Chris Benoit and Kurt Angle wrestle. Especially each other. They had a great match at 2 WWE Royal Rumble's ago and I think it's the still the best match that I have seen in the past few years. When I was younger in the 1980's, I loved watching Randy Savage and Ric Flair wrestle and it was a super joy to see them finally meet at Wrestlemania 8. In the very late 80' and 90's to mid 90's, I was really into Curt Hennig and Bret Hart. Both I thought were outstanding! In all my matches I use three moves that I love to do.
Bret Hart always had this move where his opponent would sling him from one turnbuckle to
another and he would hit the total turnbuckle with such great force that it would move the ring
a few inches and he would slam back hard to the mat with such an impact! I see it done today lots but I still love doing it myself. Most of my opponents are shocked that I will do that in a match. The second and third moves I stoled from Randy Savage. His leaping clothesline that he would do, hitting his opponent and then landing on his butt, I love that move and I usually throw that in a few times in a match. My "finishing move" is Randy's version of the "Top Rope Big Elbow Drop." I just think its a great finishing move and so I had to adapt it to show my great dedication to the Macho man, the wrestler that I idolize the most. I sure do miss Randy being on tv. It sucks that he's so stuck where he's at now doing weird Rap albums. lol
Peterstaniforth- What are your plans for the future?
BLACKWATER-I will be honest. I really don't have plans for the future. I wrestle now as much as I possibly can and when I think its not fun anymore, thats when I will quit. I always say and I tell everyone I know that I did NOT get into wrestling to make money. Or to get famous. Or to get laid. I got into it to have fun and to entertain a crowd. That parts a HUGE rush and I will never get used to that. Also, this is going to sound weird, but I have NEVER had aspirations to get into the WWF/WWE or any big time federation. Some guys don't like hearing this when I say it but it's the truth. I just want to have a great time and if somehow I get discovered or find my way to the WWE, then that would be fantastic. Actually, I never thought I would be a wrestler in wrestling. I thought I would be a booker, cause I always wanted to run shows, pay wrestlers and come up with good storylines that made sense and entertained people. But as far as future plans. I will be honest. I have not put even one though into plans. I live by the moment and that's just me.
Peterstaniforth- Anything you'd like to promote?
BLACKWATER-Wrestlers are always promoting something it seems. lol Very quickly, if I would want promote anything right now it would be my site and how I would like to hear from other promoters and wrestlers around the country, if they have the time, to stop by and say hello and share how's the biz going at their end of the country or world?
My site's ur is: http://www.blackwater-online.com
And my emails addy is: email@example.com
Yes...I know it's a long email. lol If they prefer not to email after visiting the site then signing the guestbook would really make me happy. I am wrestling lots south of Ohio right now for ACW wrestling and up north Ohio for ASWA wrestling so to see anyone at shows and to chat would be fantastic as well. I am easy going and nice to talk to so don't be afraid to approach me and say hello. Thats really about it. Thanks for taking the time to read this interview and take care everyone. :-)
Ohio Wrestling Weekly Interview
THE BLACKWATER INTERVIEW:
by Jason Nickelson("Bobby Jean")
Ohio Wrestling Weekly
September 10 2000
Q1- I remember in grade school....you were always a wrestling freak...everyone always made fun of you and now you are one...how did you get this far and why(big laugh)?
A-I have always been entertained by wrestling and I wanted something to do with it when I grew up...everyone thought it was a "phase" I was going through...still I did not want to be a wrestler....maybe a promoter or writer or something other than a wrestler.
Q2-How did you get to the level you are at? Who trained you and where did you train at?
A-I met a wrestler named Jimmie Lee who introduced me to Kid Collins and the A.S.W.A. and thier training center in Galion, Ohio. They soon after moved the gym to Shelby, Ohio and that's where I got the bulk of my training...I owe most of my training respects to "Mr. Insanity" Toby Cline...He and I spent most of the Summer of '98 squaring off against each other at the training center teach each other moves...he is a little faster-speedwise on me..so he got the best of me sometimes...hey, we taught each other a lot...I would like to say....Thanks Tobe!
Q3-Who was your first match against and did you win?
A-My first match was ironically against "Mr. Insanity" and since we knew we would have a good match, the promoter put us together...I still believe we easily had the best match that night. The bad part of that match was that I dislocated my right shoulder at the beginning of the start of the match...I went about 12 minutes with Insanity and still came out the winner...although I hooked the tights for the pin and I have been told I cheated...I use Jesse "The Body" Ventura's old quote."Win if ya can, Lose if ya must, but always cheat!"-I think that suits Blackwater just fine!
Q-4 How was your home life like while growing up in Ohio?
A-Ha!...pretting boring, actually...hey, this is Ohio Jason! Pretty easy or rough depending on your state or interpertaion of a lifestyle. I had to be home each night by 6 pm to eat, if not, I did not eat and baths at 7pm and tv from 8-9:30 pm...pretty much all the time..it wasn't a dictatorship-my dad was always in control-but we (my little sister and I)always got what we need and sometimes what we wanted...However, my dad was always behind the times, we did not have color tv and cable tv. It was not until after he passed on did we buy a color tv and a subscription to cable television. Now I can't see what the struggle was all about. I rarely watch television today at all! Unbelievable!
Q-5 How was your social life in Highschool? Any girlfriends?
I had no social life in highschool, or at least not until the end of my teachings...My father would not let me have a girlfriend...heck, he was so strict that friends were not allowed to come into our home...I think that he did not trust anyone! I basically had no social life until the 12 grade. I met a girl name Shely, who live in Ashland, and we secretly went out for about 18 months. I had a horrible experience with her at the end. My father passed away in the Summer of 1993. About a week before he died, A friend of mine find out for me (what a friend!..sheesh) that she was seeing another guy-had been for a while- and we broke up two days after my dad had passed on. It was not a good time for that stuff, since I was not already in a good mood from losing my pops! I think it's cost me my confindence in trying to get a girlfriend since every "date", if that's what thier called, I have had since breaking up with Shely has been lousy...each one had gotten worse...I never get a callback and the ones that stay my friends...kinda ween me off and stop calling me after a few months...I think it a sacrilege(Ha!).
Q-6 Change of pace, who do you idolize in pro wrestling?
A- I have much respect for Vince Mcmahon and the way he does his business..he seems like a genius. Wrestlerwise, I have always liked Randy Savage and his "Macho Man" character...I always wanted to come out to the fans cheering me like they cheered him(when he was a good guy) and have such a beautiful Valet/Manager such as Miss Elizabeth...later though, I like the bad Randy Savage better and how the fans booed him, for some reason I enjoy the fans booing me and jeering me. When Savage was a bad guy, he seemed more agressive and plus, like Randy Savage, I could not stand Hulk Hogan either...bad wrestler and even a worse actor. He sucks!..and still does!
Q-7 How about I throw out some wrestlers names and you tell me your opinion about them or what you think about the person. Bret Hart.
A- Bret, huh? I used to think he was the best there was. He had the best matches...he wrestled, period. Then it seems he got greedy. And ever since Owen died, he has whined and cried everyday about life not being fair...blah, blah. Hey Bret, move on and enjoy what's left of your life...and your millions of dollars paychecks...think of all the people who don't have what you got or maybe you should get of wrestling and out of the spotlight...sheesh...I dunno! Now you got me ranting! (Laughs)
Q-8 Hulk Hogan?
I used to really respect him...now I don't. He should be passing on what he has learned to help the younger guys and he has not....I can't say anything else!
Q-9 Shawn Michaels?
I liked him. I though all the DX stuff at the end and the ribs on Bret were hilarious. I thought he was OK!
O-10 Ric Flair?"
Probably the greatest wrestler of all time. He is one of my favorites, but he is losing some respect the longer he stays in....he is starting to achieve "Hogan Status", meaning that he is overstaying his welcome. You can only have so many retirement parties and comeback festivals! Please Go.
I don't like him and I don't think he is very talented. Seems to be a hothead and maybe a little to stiff in his matches...I think he needs to relax some.
Q-12 Roddy Piper?
Here is another guy who has had too many comebacks...I no longer respect him and was he not drunk in all those last WCW skits he done vs Russo...what the heck was he doing in those things?!
Q-13 Scott Steiner?
I used to like him and Rick as the Bros., I could care less about him as a singles wrestler.
Q-14 Chris Benoit?
Chris is my favorite wrestler...I have been running my mouth on how great a wrestler he is...his mic skills have increased greatly since entering the WWF, plus I wish I had the ring skills and stamina that he has.
Q-15 Care to name and other wrestlers that you like or dislike?
Sure. Some are in the past and some still wrestle. Ted Dibiase(my favorite heel, WWF), Andre the giant. Jake "the Snake" Roberts. Dusty Rhodes. The Ultimate Warrior(when he was in his right mind!), I like the Hardy Boyz now as the best tag team, The Road Warriors of yesterday were the best tag team ever, Rick Rude, Owen Hart, Brian Pillman, all deceased and all great wrestlers/entertainers who are already sorely missed. "the old" Jerry "the king" Lawler, Hunter Hearst Helmsley, Kane, did I say Chris Benoit?, Chris Benoit, Tom Zenk,Stevie Richards, Rick Martel, Jesse Ventura, Gorilla Monsoon just to name a few.
Guys I dislike.
King Kong Bundy. Chuck Palumbo. Prince Albert. Steve Blackman. Chris Jericho(I liked him in WCW), Kevin Nash, Scott Steiner, Rick Steiner, Jeff Jarret, Stevie Ray, Brian Adams, Brian Clark, Too Cool, Rikishi, Bull Buchanann, Val Venis, Midieon, Undertaker(this guy should have retired 2 years ago, a shell of his former self), all the mean street posse, Kanyon, Buff Bagwell....sheesh, I could make this list longer so I think I stop there! Anyway, it's not that I dislike anyone, it's that there personality and characters are horrible and if they try harder...well, maybe they are and that's the best they can do...I dunno!