I love stories where people make things happen. I find it inspiring to know that, with an inclination and the willingness to breathe life into the unknown, these are steps that most anyone can take.
Bill Simmons, who is sometimes called the Sports Guy, and currently works for ESPN, is one such person. In 1997, Simmons started the Boston Sports Guy blog, where he wrote about sports from the perspective of a fan, which was unusual at the time. Most sports writing tried to be journalistic and gain access to athletes and behind-the-scenes insights, whereas Simmons interviewed his buddies and celebrating the experience of fandom. He seemed to have a lot of fun with his stories, and his writing got better, and his audience grew. He kept at it, and now his content is a main feature on ESPN’s web site. He has also developed the Grantland.com website and is a partner is the sports documentary series 30 for 30. The guy had his own unique take on the world of sports, and he’s ridden to the front of the line.
Sometimes it’s hard to make connections between the celebrity of the accomplished and their initial beginnings. That’s one of the reasons I find the work of Ronald Jenkees so interesting. Jenkees loves rhythm, and while unable to read sheet music, he began exploring an interest in synthesizer jams, eventually posting some of his clips on YouTube. His beats are good, and his enthusiasm seems genuine, and it’s fun to sort through his catalogue. Bill Simmons saw one of these clips, and invited Jenkees to produce a music intro for his podcast series. Listening to Jenkees tell the story is pretty entertaining, and then when you hear what Simmons’ producers did with the clip, it makes it even the better.
Catching up with Jenkees now, it seems that he’s moved out of his homemade work space into a professional studio, and has two independently produced CDs up for sale. I’m not sure the details of Ronald Jenkees life, but it seems that he’s another example of someone setting priorities based on their inclinations and discovering where that path leads.