I have a lot of people that I could thank that helped me get to where I am today. But none of these people would be in my life if it wasn’t for Jon Call. Most—including myself—know him as Jujimufu, founder of Tricks Tutorials. What you’re about to read is how he changed my life.
In 2002, I came across his website and, not to be cliché but, my life was forever changed. He singlehandedly motivated me to start tricking. Tricking, as described by Jon, is an aesthetic blend of flips, kicks, and twists.
Throughout my time on Tricks Tutorials, I watched Jon mature into someone that enjoyed tinkering with the in’s and out’s of the human body. He wrote about crazy things like lifting weights and eating cans of tuna in between classes during school.
He inspired me to take my health seriously. I remember asking my mom to buy wheat bread instead of white, and I also remember asking for adjustable dumbbells for Christmas. I was afraid to do this at first, so I went to Jon for help. We both thought it would be a good topic to write about. Lo and behold, he wrote Do It For You, Do it Yourself. (If you scroll down to the bottom of this page, you can see it says “Anfeyd gave me the idea for this channel.” If you haven’t guessed, I’m Anfeyd.)
But I wasn’t quite “there” yet. My lunch in high school consisted of two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on wheat bread, chips, fruit snacks, and a can of iced tea. At the time, I felt like I was doing good things by getting rid of white bread and soda pop.
But Jon was always evolving and learning, and I always soaked up what he was willing to spill. With every new video and every new article—it was inspiring to see someone grow so rapidly both physically and mentally. He had it figured out, and I wanted to figure it out.
In 2005, my freshman year in college, I realized my deterioration. I was sitting in the cafeteria in between classes, eating a few slices of pizza and two bags of pop tarts. “Juji isn’t eating this shit right now,” I said to myself.
Within a year I became a different person. I developed a strong will that holds with me to this day. By sophomore year, I routinely woke up at five o’clock in the morning to eat; only to go back to sleep and then wake back up at six o’ clock to train.
My motivation was Jon and Tricks Tutorials. At the time, his website was my homepage. I only needed to click the Internet Explorer icon to remind me of my purpose.
I learned from many people on Tricks Tutorials’s Forum. It was a community of sorts, in a deranged and nonpersonal kind of way. So when they closed down, it was an introspective time.
But I wasn’t that upset because Tricks Tutorials still stood. And so did I. Waiting for every sampler. Waiting for every article. Waiting for every update. Waiting to learn from someone that I admired so much.
When I look at where I am in 2011, it’s kind of surprising. I have a Bachelors Degree and a Masters Degree in the health and fitness field. I recently had an article published in My Mad Methods about tricking, and a few published on T-Nation. (Trust me, there’s more to come.) I have people e-mail me, asking me questions about training and tricking. I get paid to train online clients.
And I have a long list of people I could thank for helping me along the way.
I can thank my family and girlfriend for always supporting me. I can thank my parents for being the nicest people on the earth. I can thank James Smith, Buddy Morris, Mike Guadango, Nate Green, Alex Vasquez, Chris Korfist, Kelly Baggett, James “Smitty” Smith, Dan John, John Romaniello, Bret Contreras, JC Deen, Zach Even-Esh, Roger Lawson II, and Mark Rippetoe for answering my petty questions. I can even thank others that interact with me on Twitter and Facebook, and those followers that have yet to reach out to me.
But I wouldn’t be able to do any of this if it wasn’t for Jon Call—Jujimufu—motivating me to change my life. And even to this day, he remains as the largest influence in my life. Even though I only talk to him on sporadic occasions, I can’t thank him enough for everything he has given me.
Truthfully, this tribute could go on for ten pages, and I feel empty closing it now. But I don’t think Jon would want anything more—if anything at all. In fact, I think he would rather me not be such a fan boy, and then perhaps spout some philosophical creed that undermines his importance in, what amounts to not only my life but also everyone else’s that was touched by Tricks Tutorials.
But I can’t escape how influential he has been, and I’ll never forget him as a central figure in the growth of tricking. Most of all, I’ll never forget him as a central figure in the growth of me.