Wow. I didn’t think I’d have this strong of a reaction, but I did. The Gun Dudes Podcast is ending after seven years.
I was thinking: It’s just a podcast. Am I seriously saddened by this? Yes. Big time. Here’s why.
I changed. Entirely. Starting in 2008, I went from a fat suburban go-along, get-along sheeple “male” (not man) to what I am today. When my transformation started seven years ago, I simultaneously started listening to this podcast done by three UPS drivers in Salt Lake City who talked about guns and joked around. The Gun Dudes. They were hilarious.
They were just like me. I instantly “knew” them just by listening to them.
Over the last seven years, the Gun Dudes did what I did: We grew. We changed (for the better). We became “famous” (in our little world, that is). We became what we wanted to become. That’s an amazing sentence, so I’ll repeat it: We became what we wanted to become. We transformed together and at the same time – 2008 to the present. What a ride.
Once I had an amazing conversation with the lead Gun Dude, Carl. We were talking about how much time the books (in my case) and the podcast (in his case) take and the effect it has on our families. Then one of us (I forget who) said, “Not everyone will understand this but: We have so many cool things we can do with our time that it’s really hard to do normal stuff, stuff we should probably do. We have cool people to know, cool stuff to do. Gun classes. Meeting Massad Ayoob. Going to SHOT Show. Shooting with Special Forces guys. Talking to Jack Spirko. We never expected any of this. This is a good problem to have.” Very true, Carl. Very true.
Probably the most profound effect the Gun Dudes had on me was confidence. Sounds weird, I know: confidence from a podcast? But when I was (painfully) transitioning from suburban softie to a gun guy, I wondered if there was something “weird” about me. The Gun Dudes, episode after episode, showed me that us gun guys are funny and laid back. We’re just normal dudes who like guns; nothing weird about that. It was amazingly comforting.
Here are couple of my Gun Dudes memories that will make you smile.
I’ll never forget the first time the Gun Dudes read one of my emails on the air in 2009. It was way before I wrote the books. I couldn’t believe that “celebrities” read my email.
The next amazing Gun Dudes memory I have is also from before I wrote the books. I emailed them and told them that I was thinking about writing a novel and they were in it. (They are: the Stan, Carl, Tom, and Travis characters who help Special Forces Ted move the equipment out to Marion Farm.) They read it on air and were, like, “Wow. We might be in a novel. How cool is that?” I told them I was putting them in the books, in part, to force myself to finish the books. I knew that if I told them I would put them in the books, but didn’t finish the project, that I would have let down the Gun Dudes. I’m serious. It motivated me to finish the books.
Then I sent them each a copy of the books. They couldn’t believe they were in them. I was blown away that these “celebrities” thought it was cool that I – little ol’ me – put them in a book.
I was on the show five times. Each time we recorded an episode, I would tell them, “I can’t believe I’m talking to the Gun Dudes.” They’d say the same about talking to “Glen Tate.” It sounded so amazing to hear that.
A last fantastic memory about the Gun Dudes is when the narrator of my audio books, Kevin Pierce, recorded hilarious promos for the show. The main one said, “You’re listening to the Gun Dudes, which is a free podcast. You get what you pay for.” I smile every time I hear that. A big, hearty, down-to-your heart smile. God, I love those guys (purely heterosexually, of course, as they would say).
I will miss the Gun Dudes. Fortunately, I have their contact information and a standing invitation to come down to Utah and hang out with them, which I plan on doing. What else are you going to do that’s fun in Utah?
My final thought is a huge, huge thank-you to them. I know how much work it is do stuff like a podcast or write books. I want to thank the Gun Dudes for putting on an amazing and life-changing – seriously, life-changing – podcast. Tens of thousands of people benefited from you guys spending your Saturdays goofing around in front of a microphone.