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Courageous or Crazy?

When I first began my blog, I was a bit concerned I wouldn’t be able to come up with enough cool stuff to write about. Those doubts were put to rest when I realized I didn’t need to chronicle only current events. I’ve been at this game for twenty-two years. I have plenty of stories to tell. Today I’m sharing a favorite from last summer’s adventure at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. It’s about a big biker I met named Tiny and his impression of watching me do comedy on the Buffalo Chip’s main-stage between Tesla and Hinder back in 2009.

I met Tiny outside the Buffalo Chip Comedy Club. He and other campground guests were waiting to be interviewed by Pee Wee Herman. I was hanging around just in case somebody wanted to talk to me. Pee Wee was at Sturgis to film a segment for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. It’s my guess that somebody from the front office asked Tiny if he’d stop by. No doubt Pee Wee wanted to talk to some menacing looking bikers.

Tiny has been working backstage concert security at the Buffalo Chip for over twenty years and is one-hundred-percent genuine bad-ass-biker. Although if you talk to him, he seems to have a gentle nature, Tiny is an imposing figure and carries himself like a guy who is used to getting respect. He got it from me. I felt very tiny talking to him. Mostly I just listened.

Tiny sat at a table with me while waiting to be interviewed and shared a few great stories. A couple of these I think it prudent of me not to retell but I want to give a brief synopsis of one because it paints such a great picture. Tiny has a coyote tail attached to his vest. Before wear-and-tear and time had taken its toll, the entire animal’s skin was sewn onto the back, complete with head-baring-fangs resting on the shoulder (great conversation starter). Tiny ran into this particular coyote one night on his motorcycle. He was lucky to survive the encounter. The coyote was not.

When we first began talking, Tiny said I looked familiar but couldn’t recall from where. He mentioned this a few times during our conversation. Twenty minutes later it dawned on him. “I remember you from last summer,” he said. “You were on the big stage. One of the big nights. Telling jokes.” As Tiny spoke he gave me a look of recognition. I’d also like to believe it was one of respect because he added, “That took a lot of guts.” Hearing took a lot of guts from a guy who knew a thing or two about exercising courage gave me such a rush of testosterone that I could almost feel the hair growing on my chest. Of course I can’t really know for sure if he meant this as a compliment. For all I know he may have thought I was just fucking nuts.

To watch that segment filmed for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno follow the link: Pee Wee Herman at Sturgis. Tiny makes an appearance at 2:45. It originally aired Aug 10, 2010.

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