These couple sentences are sort of a preface to the rest of the blog post. I'm not one for getting upset when a celebrity dies. I'm not one for any celebrity gossip in general, but today was a different story.
On my way to work this morning I got a text message from my little sister. At first I didn't believe the message she sent me. With a quick check of the news it was validated that Jackass star Ryan Dunn had died in a car crash early this morning.
I'm not going to lie to you and say that I'm above Jackass or CKY. I grew up in a generation that was raised with people getting kicked in the nuts, shopping carts, and being famous for being an idiot. So obviously they were a huge part of my teenage years. Not to mention my friends. We shot hours and hours of us doing stupid shit (well mainly Brian). Fuck there is a video on youtube I made that I forgot about. I credit those years filming my friends doing dumb shit to why I can take a decent photo. I'll never give credit to those shitty arts programs I took with teachers who had no clue.
Ryan Dunn's passing this morning has really made me look back on those years of fucking around and having fun with my friends with a certain pride. Glory days. I'm sure. Doing that stuff made me who I am now. I'm fairly sure of that.
Old friends who didn't really know me would probably have said that I was more of a Bam Margera fan than Ryan. I'm sure for a while I'd have said it was true. I liked HIM, wore old suit jackets, and rocked a shitty goatee.
Ryan Dunn was the one guy in all the Jackass gang that I identified with the most. It wasn't just because of the beard, but because he seemed the most realistic. An almost reluctant member of the gang, but a willing participant in the "stunts" that usually went haywire for him. Usually he'd end up hurt or with a car up his ass. I'm sure metaphorically speaking that is something we can all relate to. He was always the first to voice his opinion on why he thought it something was a bad idea, and it usually was.
At the end of the day you could say Ryan seemed the most grounded. It seemed like the money and fame hadn't really gone to his head like some of the other Jackass guys. He seemed like the same Ryan Dunn he was when they started making those CKY videos in the early 2000's. Just with a longer beard and a nicer car. Then again I only knew him from dvds, television shows, and movies.
It's hard to describe how you feel when someone you've never met, but had a large part in your life dies. I have a similar feeling sinking into my gut as when Hunter S. Thompson, and Kurt Vonnegut passed away. Both as crucial as the last in how I think, read, and write.
I just think without Ryan Dunn and Jackass I wouldn't be who I am today. If I took anything away from the show it's that you have to take risks.
Whether those risks are physical or mental you just need to get into that shopping cart.