I first met Jody when I started as a DJ on a local radio station. Jody already had his own slot and showed my co-host and me the ropes. After that, it was through twitter that I grew to really like him. I knew the Jody that’s visible online, the Jody who blogs about drink and drugs, having fun, the weird and wonderful folk who frequent his taxi and the Jody who seemingly enjoyed life.
Even after Jody confided in me over a series of e-mails about his ‘affair’ (for want of a better word), I had no idea to the extent of Jody’s Demons.
I remember sitting at work one day, checking twitter, when I saw a tweet from Jody that made my heart stop. The tweet was essentially apologising, and saying goodbye. Only really knowing Jody through twitter, I tried to think of a few mutual acquaintances. The closest I had was a few people that I play ‘words with friends’ against, so I messaged them with my fears. I just wanted someone to check, make sure it wasn’t what I thought it was.
I sent Jody a couple of text messages myself. Not wanting to escalate a situation that in truth, I could have just been totally blowing out of proportion, I was cautious in what I said. When I got no responses, I panicked and sent a few texts along the lines of ‘don’t do anything stupid, think of Bam’ (Bam being Jody’s youngest son).
I had a day of genuine panic, I had no contact to Jody in the real world, but this is someone I’d really grown to like, aside from that, here was a man on the edge; more on the edge that I knew at the time.
A while later, I received a calming message from Jody telling me he was alright, and that was that.
WHY I MADE ‘DEMONS’
A few months passed by before I, like many others, read and was very touched by, Jody’s blog, Demons. I hardly took a breath whilst reading, when I realised that that day, Jody had intended to take his own life. It made me very sad to think that someone had reached those levels, but also very happy to know he was alive to write the blog.
Leading up to the anniversary of ‘that day’, Jody messaged me to ask if I would go back to Culver Downs with him, in order to take some photos. He was planning to write a follow up to the blog and wanted some photos. Of course I agreed.
I’ve been to Culver Downs many times. To eat dinner at the restaurant, to take photos of the view, to star gaze and even to film a scene for a music video; never, have I seen the dark side to this beautiful and breath taking cliff, overlooking the bays of both Sandown and Bembridge.
Jody and I chatted as we stood by the memorial of a young man who had lost his life there, a month or so before Jody stood in the same spot. The more we spoke, the more I realised the importance of Jody being alive; here’s an articulate guy, who has been to the bottom of the barrel, and managed, somehow, to stay afloat. Here’s a guy who is haunted by addiction, tormented by his own desires and who’s been willing to end it all, yet he’s stood here with me, with a smile on his face.
I suggested the idea of making this film to Jody, and we both agreed it was a good opportunity to help others. My own fear, was being seen as exploiting Jody’s Demons for the purpose of a ‘story’, but I assure you this is not the case. I hope that others can realise that yes, it is a battle, but yes, there are other options and there are people to talk to; there’s a future for everyone.
Thank you to Jody for making this short film with me, it was, as always, a pleasure to be in your company and I hope we can continue that for many many years to come.
Anyone viewing that feels they are slipping, get in touch.