Ryan Conklin in MTV Special Return To Duty

October 31, 2009

Ryan Conklin in IraqThe long awaited MTV follow-up special about the recall to active duty and deployment to Iraq of The Real World Brooklyn‘s Ryan Conklin is finally going to be aired.

This is the description of the show:

Any viewer of The Real World Brooklyn vividly remembers the emotional moment when cast member, and Army vet, Ryan Conklin was unexpectedly recalled for a second tour of duty in Iraq. Return to Duty is Ryan’s gritty and very personal document of his return as a patrol gunner to the sweltering streets of Baghdad. Equipped with his own video camera, and the addition of a camera crew embedded with his unit, it’s a soldier’s view of America’s changing military presence in the long war in Iraq. His very close-knit family back home must cope with the fear and absence of their son fighting overseas once again; while his new found relationship with Brooklyn Real World roommate Baya is put to a critical test.

Click on the link for more about the MTV Ryan Conklin special Return To Duty, which premieres on November 11th.

Ryan A. Conklin An Angel From Hell

August 17, 2009

Ryan ConklinWith the advent of Ryan Conklin’s book being available for pre-order on various book seller sites, Ryan wrote a plug for his book in a blog post on his MySpace page. He provided information about what the book contained, why he wrote it, and what he hoped readers would get out of it.

As reported here before, the title “An Angel From Hell” refers to Ryan being in Company A of the 3/187th Infantry Regiment (Rakkasans). That company was known as the “angels From Hell”, so being a soldier in that company made Ryan one.

The scope of this personal memoir is the year that Ryan spent in Iraq during his first deployment there (2005-2006). While there, his company provided security for Saddam Hussein’s trial in Baghdad, then moved north to Tikrit, where they did combat missions in the Al Saladin Province. Ryan mentioned the various kinds of jobs he performed at that time, including rifleman, turret gunner, radio telephone operator, assistant gunner, and general morale booster.

The book came about because of the lack of any other means to resolve the deeply buried emotions that Ryan felt about his experiences in combat. He started writing about them and found the process to be a form of self-therapy. It was a way for him to let his guard down and be open about what he felt. He could draw his emotions from his mind, put them on paper, and then push them away.

Ryan included all the little things he did during both the good times and bad times. He put in things he was proud of and things he wasn’t so proud of. It took him a year, but eventually he ended up with 400 pages of his perspective of being a soldier in Iraq.

Interestingly, the book at first was intended to be for Ryan’s eyes only. Then at some point, he realized that other people might be interested in what he had to say as well. Now, he views his book as being meaningful for any reader. He hopes it will provide insight to all on what the men and women in the military do in Iraq and what kind of situations they face there.

An Angel From Hell – BUY THE BOOK!!

Ryan Conklin Readies To Leave For Iraq

April 15, 2009

Ryan ConklinIn a recent article by the AP, Ryan Conklin (The Real World Brooklyn) stated that he was getting ready to be in Iraq on Sunday, April 19th. (Ryan leaves Fort Bragg on the 16th headed to Kuwait first). He said he would like to leave as soon as possible so he can finish his tour that much sooner. He hopes that the duration will be no longer than nine months.

Ryan is with other soldiers who have been called back to active duty. They are not happy about their situation, being taken away from their post-service lives, and they stick together to commiserate with each other about it.

Nevertheless, Ryan still looks back at his military service as something that has been very valuable to him and something that he is very proud of. He’s confident that if he had the choice, he would make the same decision again to enlist.

One of the things he hopes to do with any rest time that he may have in Iraq is to try to do some filming. When asked if he had thought about making a documentary about his upcoming time in Iraq, Ryan joked that he could make a “Real World: Baghdad”.

Ryan Conklin And Wrenching Pathos

March 18, 2009

Ryan Real World BrooklynI watched episode 11 of The Real World Brooklyn, in which Ryan gets the notice that he was being called back to Iraq. Like most people I knew how it was going to end, but that still didn’t prepare me for the actual experience of watching it. Most of the show was additional awe producing displays of what an intricate and impressive person Ryan Conklin is. For someone like me who is trying to figure out what makes this person tick, it really throws one for a loop. Too much to understand.

Then came the inevitable finale.

I feel so numb. It’s like in a dream when you know exactly what bad thing is about to happen and you want desperately to change it but no plea can avert it. You want to reach out to someone, anyone, to make it stop.

Every week, with every episode and all the video clips, I become more in awe of Ryan. Unbelievable. Incredible. My mind can’t comprehend how all the parts of Ryan fit together in one person. I try to understand, but he’s like a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle for which there is no picture guide.

Ryan’s story is entertaining and riveting and emotionally draining. It provides hours of fascinating distraction.

But now I just want to know that everything’s going to be okay. Please be okay.

Real World Brooklyn Ryan Conklin Back To Iraq

March 11, 2009

Ryan Real World BrooklynIf you have seen my previous post on Ryan Conklin back in uniform, then the preview for episode 11 of The Real World Brooklyn is no surprise. In the preview, Ryan gets the call from home that he has received notice that he is being called back to active duty.

He went back into the army in February, several weeks ago. He said it would be February on MySpace and that’s when he disappeared from regular activity on iamonmtv.com and on his MySpace account.

I know he has been at Fort Jackson in South Carolina and then Fort Benning in Georgia around this time. Fort Jackson and Fort Benning are places that do refresher training for reactivated IRR soldiers.

Then I learned that he is being redeployed to Iraq on April 15th. That’s just 2 weeks after his 24th birthday. Be sure to wish him happy birthday on April 1st and let him know you care.

I’ve already commented on my feelings about this at the link above and below. Please feel free to comment here or at either of those two on how you feel.

Seeing Ryan called back to Iraq.

Writing To Ryan Conklin

February 20, 2009

Ryan Real World BrooklynLooking at comments to Ryan Conklin (of Real World Brooklyn) that girls have written in various places, I can’t believe how moronic so many of them sound. It’s no wonder that Ryan is so turned off by typical girl talk. He may be a prankster and fun loving, but he’s almost 24 and not likely to be interested in fan girl speak, especially from adult women. His first girlfriend was a pharmacy major for goodness sake. That’s the level of goal oriented woman he would want to be with, not someone texting while watching Hannah Montana.

As a public service I will provide here to his female fans what I think are some helpful hints.

When writing to him,

  • don’t use exclamation points at the end of every sentence. If you really are that excited, try taking a Valium before writing.
  • don’t shout individual words in all caps. It’s harsh on the eyes and the ears and makes you look like you have typing Tourette’s.
  • don’t misspell a word with repeated letters. Saying you loooooove him says you are drunk or have fallen asleep on the keyboard.
  • don’t use ‘U’ instead of you. He would like an educated person, not a girl who cheated on her GED.
  • don’t say you are not a stalker. The only people who do, are.
  • don’t try to make an impression by being excessively fawning about him or his music; he’s not stupid.
  • Do try to be unique, informative, and funny. Ryan would be interested in someone a lot like himself. So be more like Janeane Garofalo and less like a 12 year old at a Jonas Brothers concert.

    Ryan Conklin Has The Kavorka

    February 19, 2009

    Ryan Real World BrooklynRyan Conklin of The Real World Brooklyn is cute but not beautiful. His 5’8″ body is pretty good but not remarkable. He can be funny and charming but also sarcastic and harsh. Yet despite these things, women find him to be irresistible. Ryan has the kavorka.

    As defined on the television series Seinfeld, the Latvian word kavorka means “the lure of the animal”. It is explained that women (and in this case some men) are drawn to a person that has it. They would give anything to be possessed by that person.

    I don’t know if the Latvian language has a variation for this, but with Ryan it seems more like “the lure of the (stuffed) animal”. He can be just so darn adorable when he turns on his boyish charm. He knows how to do the head forward and down look, like when he is singing or when he is acting like a good listener as he did when he was talking to Katelynn Cusanelli about her surgery.

    It also helps that he is a real life, self-assured G.I. Joe action figure, complete with changeable hats and removable mustache.

    The magic in this kavorka power is that it seems to cause women to forget his temper, his non-positive comments about girls, and his somewhat uncertain career path. All that women care about is that they must run their fingers through that irresistible baseball cap shaped hair and look into his beckoning eyes as he serenades about tampons or other feminine hygiene products.

    His kavorka lure may have been a good thing for Ryan Conklin when contained in his little town of Gettysburg, but now that its effect has gone nationwide it may be too much for him. You’ll know he’s reached that point when you see him at the Giant grocery store buying ten cloves of garlic, three quarts of vinegar, six ounces…

    Ryan Conklin

    January 27, 2009

    Ryan ConklinAt the beginning of every new season of The Real World I watch at least part of the first episode to see if there are any people of interest that might give me a reason to keep watching. Unfortunately, in the previous five seasons I haven’t seen anything that would make me want to waste a minute watching that tripe. Needless to say, this made watching subsequent seasons of the Real World/Road Rules Challenge a challenge as I wondered who all of the new extra people were.

    I should point out that I had been an avid viewer of the show beginning with episode one of season one, all the way through Philadelphia, with the notable exceptions of the Las Vegas sleaze-fest and the irrelevant San Diego. So I’m open to finding a cast or even a cast member that I care enough about to give me a reason to watch again.

    The problem has been that the production company as been too intent on creating immediate hook-ups and excessive drama by casting mainly very loose and shallow men and women plus a couple of scary psychotics. Production lost sight of the key to Real World‘s success, which is not the inane activities of the cast, but rather the gradual exploration and unveiling of the cast’s personalities. With cast members that are only a plastic veneer on an inner core of plastic, this type of character development hasn’t been possible.

    Having seen the opening installments of the latest season, Real World Brooklyn, I can happily report that there is again someone in the cast who makes it worthwhile to select “record this showing” on my Tivo. That castmember is Ryan Conklin, the aspiring musician/film maker who is a former infantryman in the U.S. Army. Not only is he entertaining to watch, but he leaves you wanting to know more about him.

    Ryan Real World Brooklyn

    On of the most intriguing aspects of Ryan Conklin is his experience in the military. While he is a stereotypical soldier who doesn’t mind shooting at things and likes to blow stuff up, he’s also a creative type, who writes and sings songs and who authored a 300 page manuscript about his time in Iraq. He joined the Army because of the effect of 9/11 on him, but he leans Democrat and supported Obama. He’s rightfully proud of his service, but he doesn’t tell the Brooklyn cast about it right away because he wants make sure that others don’t prejudge him and that they have a chance to see and appreciate the full scope of his well-rounded character. These are some of the things that make Ryan a person who is compelling to be understood.

    Ryan Real World Brooklyn

    While Ryan Conklin has received cheers for his lighthearted jokes, songs and conversation, he has also attracted some jeers for his comments about transgendered roommate Katelynn Cusanelli, his initial interactions with gay roommate JD Ordornez, and his theatrics after being kissed by drag queen Peppermint. Some dullards have mistakenly and far too simplistically labeled Ryan as some kind of homophobe, but I’m not buying it. Reality TV editing makes easy conclusions for people who don’t like to think at all and in this case it gives something to glance and boo at to those kind of people who want a one-dimensional anti-gay person that they can criticize. On the other other hand, to those willing to fire a few neurons and look at the outtakes and some of the interviews, it can be seen that Ryan is pretty cool for a straight guy. It takes time for straights to unlearn prejudice and Ryan has shown he is on his way and willing to be more open in the future. Being friends with a gay man, realizing that being admired is a compliment, and even visiting a gay bar are good steps. He’s going to be fine. People shouldn’t expect a 23 year old only recently out of the army to be more than this yet.

    Ryan Real World Brooklyn

    Ryan A. Conklin has a good head on his shoulders but he also has his less intellectual side, as seen by his singing “The Tampon Song”. For this reason, I don’t mind stating that I can appreciate him for more shallow reasons as well. He didn’t have me at “hello”, but he certainly had my attention when he was lounging in his shorts, showing those hairy legs. Sustenance for the mind as well as the eyes.

    Ryan Real World Brooklyn

    Ryan Kehoe

    February 12, 2008

    I have been watching MTV’s The Gauntlet III (Real World/Road Rules Challenge) because of Ryan Kehoe. I like Ryan and seems like a cool guy. You don’t get to see much of him on the show, but I find him increasingly appealing. He reminds me of an ex-boyfriend. At least all of the good parts.

    I’ll tell you about where they differ. While they have both been waiters, at least Ryan Kehoe never sold women’s shoes, that I know of. He also probably is not a two-timing, serial dater nor a person who starts every conversation listing what illegal drugs he is on. Don’t get me wrong, I have no ill will toward the ex. He went from an active skinny boy to a huge blob, which showed me I didn’t miss out on anything. Still, we had some good times in the long ago.

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