DBZ barcode for Jimmy

SOLD! at 610! someone got a great deal. Thanks again DBZ.

The Infamous DBZ has decided to sell his bike also, for the benefit of Jimmy Le Van. I’m sure there will be more of these gracious gestures, and I will try to get them all posted here. Here is what DBZ had to say:

If any of you keep up with the wild and whacky world of BMX, you’ve probably already heard that Jimmy Levan had a horrible crash in New Jersey whilst filming for the next Odyssey video. He’s still in intensive care with a fractured skull, but is conscious after coming out of a medically-induced coma and seems to be doing better at this point.

I don’t really know why, but for some reason the news really affected me in a big way. I’ve only met the guy once, briefly, at the Ritz in Austin a few years back, and I think we exchanged no more than a dozen words. Besides that, I’ve been a fan of his riding ever since I first saw pictures of him in magazines in the early nineties.

He’s always been a total badass–one time, at some godawful MTV “extreme” clusterf@*k in his hometown of Louisville, he was chastised for jumping his bike right out of the competition area, clear through to the street outside. Some security meathead tried to tell him what he was and wasn’t allowed to do in the confines of the event, to which he replied, “This is my town and I’ll do what the f@*k I want!”

Over the years, he’s come to symbolize a lot of why BMX is so important to me. It gets weird, growing older with a passion for what is supposed to be a child’s pastime, and Jimmy and his company Metal Bikes have become ever more significant to me as a consequence. The same goes for the bike company Terrible One, but that’s a whole other story.

Hearing of Jimmy getting messed up like this had me pretty depressed for days, until I made some calls and found out he was doing okay. Reflecting on why, I think it’s because of basic empathy. Relating to other people is difficult in this overpopulated and socially fragmented age, so I think we choose who we bother to invest our attention in. Often it’s the people around us that we know, but just as often it’s not.

There’s something else, though. I can’t remember the exact quote, but Hunter Thompson wrote in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas about one of the great failures of the sixties counter-culture being the mistaken belief that there would be some benevolent presence at the end of the trip, ready to pick up the pieces. It’s the kind of misapprehension that I’ve never been under, having barely had the luxury of a family, and it has been brought home to me the most when I’ve woken up in a hospital for one reason or another. All I’ve had are my friends, and they’ve done as much as they can–which has always been way above and beyond what I ever would have expected.

Tom and Tina Williams have set up a fund for Jimmy’s hospital bills and expenses through their bike shop, Empire BMX. I’ve put the URL below; they are going to match any donation. A few days ago, Odyssey (a BMX company that sponsors Jimmy) announced that they will match the total sum from Empire as well, so if you give ten bucks, Jimmy gets forty.

To that end, I’ve decided to sell my T-1 Barcode bike on eBay and donate the money. I never ride the damn thing, and it bugs me to have two BMX bikes. I don’t want to be a “bike shop guy” with a bunch of cool yet unused stuff, and this just seems like the right thing to do. So, if you’re in the market for a state-of-the-art BMX bike, built by the most anal-retentive obsessive mechanic on the west coast around a custom frame fabricated in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, do a search for T-1 Barcode JTML… Jimmy The Man Levan. Or click HERE


The Empire/Odyssey Donation with have to go to Jimmy this weekend so I hope everyone can pull out all the stops this week, so we can give him as much help as possible.