Brave Words and Bloody Knuckles
By Martin Popoff
TED NUGENT is likely deeply ensconced in hunting season right now. But he can sit camouflaged, saddle sore and satisfied that he’s unleashed a more than strong record in Love Grenade, out now on Eagle Records – for a full feature on the album, see BW&BK #107. In he meantime, strap yourself in for some straight talk…
“You know, I get stiff after I dance like an idiot every night on stage,” comments the Whackmaster, asked how in the’ hell he can keep killing crowds live every night. “I feel like I should be wearing some kind of brace. But I’ve got to tell you, compared to all the other buddies that I know that are 59, I ain’t gonna complain. Because I’m still athletic, energized… the footwork, the athleticism, is just stupid. And it’s because I take good care of myself.”
Do any of your doctors tell you, ‘Man your knees are a mess; your back is a mess.’?
“No they haven’t, even though my knees are a mess, because of jumping off the amps all those years. I mean, some mornings I’ll get up and I have to take a few minutes and slowly flex my legs because of all the years of jumping off those amps. But I’ve got to tell you, for 59, I can run with the best of them. I’m a lucky man. I’m doing the sign of the cross right now while I tell you that (laughs). But again, it’s about healthy living and an intelligent diet. And not enough can be said about the venison that I eat. It is rocket fuel. And the discipline of eating organic fruits and vegetables and good water and quality dairy products, and no processed foods, and minimal red meat. And I say minimal compared to the average glutton out there who eats fucking 12 ounce and 16 ounce steaks. That’s a Nugent dinner for four! I mean, my back straps are maybe six to eight ounces - maybe! And I eat fish three or four times a week. I’m healthy motherfucker. Yeah, I weigh 210 pounds now and when I graduated from high school I was 175. But I’m not fat, and I remain buoyant and lively for an old fuck.”
You’re right - you walk into a restaurant these days, especially in the states, and the portions are disgusting.
“Yes, and you know what, Martin, I don’t know how you can convey this in your article. I’m sure you will do it with some sincerity and aplomb, but I watched the VAN HALEN press conference on the Internet. And I just have nothing but glowing admiration for Alex, just a superlative virtuoso, and Eddie, maybe one of the top two or three musical geniuses who ever lived, and David is just the quintessential showman, clever guy, great vocalist, true soulful rocker. But there’s Eddie’s son - is he only like… what, 17?! And he’s got blubber?! The kid is fat. And I’ll tell you why. The same abandonment - which is the number one crime against your soul - the abandonment of discipline that allows Eddie to rationalize smoking cigarettes, or all those years of the drugs and the alcohol. It’s the same abandonment of parental discipline that allows his own child to become unhealthy and blubberous. And I find that just damnable. If I was his dad, I would put that motherfucker on a treadmill and I would watch what Mr. Hand is bringing up to Mr. Fat Face.”
And when you see it in the schools, starting at five or six years old, those kids are going to battling that weight for the rest of their lives.
“Oh, for god sakes! And it’s about discipline. Now, you check out my four children. Fucking decathlon masters. Firm, athletic, muscular, bright. They have good posture. They stand up straight. They carry themselves with dignity. And you know, if this offends anybody, fuck you! If you’re offended by my words, that would be guilt. Look in the mirror and get the fuck going and upgrade. I’m 59 and I still stand erect - come on! I’m in the airport every day and some of the fucking beached sperm whales I see walking around, it’s an embarrassment. It’s like saying, ‘Hey God, thanks for the gift of life. I think I’ll poison it.’ I find it just delirious.”
65% of people in North America are now overweight, and half of those are classed as obese.
“Dear God! Dear God in heaven! Inexcusable! And by the way, nobody likes to eat more than I do (laughs). I can eat a fuckin’ palette of chocolate cake and stuff like that. But I don’t! Because I give a shit! Instead I’m eating organic raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, and peaches from Oregon right now. That’s my meal today. I had some fresh halibut earlier today, but at the restaurant, ‘Would you like dessert?’ I go, ‘No, I’m going to be eating strawberries later.’ ‘Well, we’ve got some great chocolate, chocolate, chocolate, chocolate cake.’ I went, ‘That’s great. Give it to that fat fucker over there.’ I’m telling you, Martin, people who are offended by me are guilty.”
And now it’s not just chocolate cake anymore. It’s got brand name on it – it’s a Cadbury or Snickers chocolate cake to move it even closer to a chocolate bar!
“It’s still bad for you. And I mean, I had one of those little bite-size Three Musketeers yesterday. There’s nothing wrong about that. But kind of think intelligent. Spirit management. I’m deep into spirit management, baby. You may have noticed that about me.”