Who is Mr Danger? In a fast and frank interview, Mr Danger talks to Mr Danger about himself, himself, and himself.
MD: Firstly, thanks very much for agreeing to do this interview. I know you haven’t done many since your accident.
MD: I said at the start I’m not going to talk about my accident. That was in the past. I’m over it. I’ve moved on. I’d like you to move on as well.
MD: Of course, I wasn’t going to ask you anything about it. I was just saying you haven’t done many interviews since it happened.
MD: Well let me ask you: if your manager had set up the biggest stunt of your career – to jump a motorcycle over 20 double decker buses with a bag on your head – and you’d not only failed to do it, but millions of people had watched a video of you failing to do it over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again, wouldn’t you have a problem talking about it?
MD: Yes I think I would.
MD: But you did just talk about it then.
MD: Oh. Oh yes. Maybe I’m getting better after all?
MD: Well while you contemplate that, perhaps you could talk a little bit about your childhood, where you grew up, what your ambitions were as a young man.
MD: I was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts. But the UK version.
MD: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire?
MD: Yes. My mother was a paper presser at the local paper press, and my father worked for a company that supplied the foam for nappy manufacturers, a real crap job. I always knew I wanted to do something different with my life.
MD: You wanted to become a daredevil?
MD: No, I wanted to work in the patent procurement division for a large multinational pharmaceutical corporation. But my parents pushed me into doing stunts. They said the money was better.
MD: And is it?
MD: How should I know? My manager handles the business side of things.
MD: But you must know how much money you make?
MD: Like I said, my manager deals with that. But I can buy whatever I want. As long as I ask her for the money in advance. And there’s enough petty cash left in the kitty that week.
MD: You’ve had a career spanning almost a decade now, what’s your proudest feat so far? And what is it that keeps you motivated in the face of constant adversity?
MD: My proudest feat so far was probably waking up this morning; breathing another breath and knowing I made it through another night. I can never get over how lucky I am to still be alive. What keeps me motivated? Definitely the fans keep me motivated. If they weren’t there I don’t know what I’d do. Well, I wouldn’t be doing stunts that’s for sure. A stunt isn’t a stunt if there’s no one there watching you, hoping you’ll fail. That’s what my manager always tells me.
MD: This manager sounds like quite an influential figure in your life.
MD: Oh yeah, she’s hard to please sometimes. But that just makes me work harder. If there’s no challenge, there’s no reward. And if there’s no reward then who cares, right? That’s why I said yes to doing the bus jump. I was in-line to get a week’s holiday in Aberdeen. But I messed it up and now I’ve got to stage a comeback.
MD: And you’re hoping to do that at InTRANSIT?
MD: Yes. I’m going to do some pretty gnarly stunts, to borrow a phrase from our American surfer cousins. All never been done before. My first stunt when I hit town I’m gonna ride all the borough’s 35 bus routes in just 3.5 hours. They say it can’t be done. My manager says, ‘it done be can!’
MD: I see. And what does that mean?
MD: I’m not sure. But I’m gonna try and do the stunt.
MD: The festival theme this year is ‘Island Life – Fantastic, Forlorn.’ How do you think that relates to you?
MD: Time was I thought I was an island. I thought I was separate from everybody else, that I could do things nobody else could do. But when I had my accident, I came crashing down to earth. I realised I was fallible, just like every other thing on the planet. Even trees. I saw a tree once that had its roots where its leaves should be. Can you believe that?
MD: No. Are you sure it wasn’t just a tree with no leaves?
MD: Maybe. I mean, I’m no Alan Titchmarsh. Thank god. Anyway, the point is, I made a mistake. I thought I was better than everyone else. And the only decent way to overcome a mistake like that is to join hands with those around you, allow people to pick you up, and have the humility to carry on together with them, on the same level, as one. It’s hard sometimes.
MD: But with no challenge there’s no reward, right?
MD: Fantastic. Well, thanks for taking the time to talk to me Mr Danger.
MD: You’re welcome, Mr Danger.
MD: I just have one last question. You mentioned humility being important. Isn’t it a bit pretentious to interview yourself?
MD: I’m the only person capable enough to do the job properly. If that sounds pretentious to you, that’s not my problem.
MD: Actually it kind of is.
MD: Oh yeah.
Mr Danger will be performing stunts around the borough of Kensington and Chelsea on the 9th, 10th, 12th and 14th of June. With a grand finale at Portobello Road market on Saturday the 17th of June. His manager will also be in attendance.