Puppet the Psycho Dwarf is the ultimate bad boy in the world of little people. Half Pint Brawlers, his troupe of "midget wrestlers" was recently featured on their own reality show on Spike. They have been battling the stodgy goodniks of Little People of America (LPA) for years.
I went on the road with the Chicago-based Brawlers years ago for a story. I'm still haunted by the image of four-foot-four Puppet, covered in real blood, screaming: "Who wants to fuck a midget?!"
Florida Rep. Ritch Workman wants to repeal a 1989 law banning "dwarf tossing"-- it's pretty much what it sounds like, usually in a bar-- in this state, and is being met with opposition from the LPA. I figured it was time for Puppet to weigh in.
I reached him by phone on a movie set in Detroit. He said he wasn't allowed to tell me which movie he's filming-- "They got us on tight confidential"-- but that it was a blockbuster.
New Times: Have you ever done dwarf tossing?
Puppet the Psycho Dwarf: That's not something I do, because I'm an athlete. I've been trained as a wrestler. One of my wrestlers many years ago did it for a living. My opinion on that is if somebody wants to do that for a living, it's his business. He's feeding his family. He's an adult.
"Dave the Dwarf" [a 3-foot-2 radio host who filed a federal lawsuit to repeal the ban] says that it's just a sport like any other, and that--just like how being tall makes you better at basketball-- a lack of height is what makes him good at this.
Yeah, that's kind of the way I market my company. Being short is a marketing tool. It's a sales tool. We do a lot of great stuff that we couldn't do if we weren't little.
What do you think about Little People of America?
I really don't see the need for them. It feels like a support group for little people. They're confused as to why I never go to their meetings, but I'm well-adjusted. Both my parents were tall, but they supported me and made me the strong individual I am. I married a tall woman. I'm doing what every American wants to do, which is go out there and make a living for yourself. To try to ban us from that contradicts themselves. It's like: I thought you were supposed to help little people.
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The LPA also has a problem with the word "midget". What do you think of that term?I have it tattooed on my body. They like to compare it to the "n" word, and that's ridiculous because it was never used as a hateful term. It started as a carnival term.
How do you have it tattooed on your body?
I have "psycho midget" tattooed on my arms.
Does the LPA still picket your shows?
They've kind of stopped now, because their arguments weren't working. Every time they'd protest me, it would just give me more publicity.
Dave the Dwarf is enjoying that same kind of publicity right now?
I'm sure he is. Like I said, that's his life. That's his body. That's his source of income.