Whenever I’m asked if I know Dylan Muhlenberg, the question is usually followed up by another asking why we have beef. The first time he did a feature on me he called me a poor man’s Seth Rotherham. He liked that line so much he used it again a while after in a blatant smear campaign. Keeping things fresh though, he added ‘philandering cheat’ and eluded to me having an STD. Shortly before that he created a hashtag about a breakup of mine. I’m either a masochist, or attracted to balding divorced men who can’t hold their liquor (same thing?), because that was me, hooked, like some abused spouse.
Our relationship is not all tweets and keystrokes though. He’s a go-to drinking companion at media and brand events – Dylan and I share an fondness for the free things in life, and this one time we raved like Saudi oil sheiks for three days in Ibiza, company account of course. I guess you could say we bonded over a mutual appreciation for complimentary canapés, open bars, and a vague dislike for the events they get dished out at.
The Muhl isn’t all about the free booze and slander though, he’s actually a pretty interesting dude, and not just to look at. He rides a kiff bike, he lives in denim (I honestly have never seen him without his jacket – except for that one time in Ibiza), and he pens some incredibly entertaining stories.
He’s the first of a bunch of people I enjoy that I’ll be featuring in partnership with Levi’s, and the first to receive a custom Levi’s jacket designed by the very talented and all round epic dude, Alex Van Rensburg (Oolex) – which he’s modelled wonderfully below. I also asked him a few questions, so if you’re interested in stories about his first job as a lifeguard, his sizeable package, or the worst fight he’s lost, check out his answers below.
You’re at Superbalist now, you were at Men’s Health before that, and GQ before that, each role focusing more on online content – as a more traditional journalist are you keeping up with where things are going, or are you just unable to hold down a job for an extended period of time?
I was at GQ for 8 years, MH for 3 years and plan to work at the Superbalist until retirement, so it’s definitely got nothing to do with me not being able to hold down a job, Daniel. I started at GQ when I was 20-years old and haven’t had more than a two-week holiday since. I’m not actually mad about online though, I just like telling stories, and so if in 10-years time the new platform is the back of cigarette boxes I’ll just adapt to that. Fortunately at my new gig there’s this 23-year old Aubrey Hepburn lookalike who is a princess, a dutchess, a queen, and she holds my hand through all that big data and analytics and tech stuff, and so now I only curl up under my desk in the fetal position and cry on the days she’s booked out on her part-time modelling gigs.
Tell me about your bike.
This is the fifth bike I’ve owned, a ’76 BMW R100s, which I bought after I crashed my Hyundai Accent. My insurance only covered third party so I sold my beat-up car to this Congolese chap who wanted to turn it into a taxi, then took the cash and my friend Matthew to Worcester to buy the bike. Then, although I always called bullshit on these flavour-of-the-month guys growing beards and chopping bikes, I dropped mine and cracked the fairing and decided to put it on a diet. So after 5 years of riding it stock I took everything off and then put on some oversized Pirelli knobblies and clip on handlebars and it looks so hardcore that it could rob liquor stores in Mordor. Or take Rhodesia back.
Tell me about the worst fight you’ve lost.
After I’d left the mother of my first child the judge decided that in return for seeing my daughter every second weekend I must pay all schooling plus sundries, all medical aid and then on top of this still pay the Devil Snake a monthly retainer.
Your #tbt posts of late have been some of my best, especially your afro lifesaving days. What is your best summer lifesaving story?
My memory is pretty fuzzy so it’s more like a collage than one coherent story. I protected the waters between the Kei and Fish rivers between 1997 and 2003, leaving scouts for nippers when I was 10 and going through the ranks until I was a pro-guard earning stupid money for doing a little bit less than fuckall. Smoking robber-of-ambition cigarettes goes with lifeguarding like red board shorts and besides coming up with ingenious bongs using the first-aid kit we’d find plenty of ways to pass the time.
We had a big double-garage under the clubhouse that we’d play stingers against and a carpark for one-bounce. There was this shark-alarm klaxon that we’d fire off every time a hot girl walked past. There were kranses on the river for rock jumping and crevasses underneath that had tropical fish, which we’d catch and keep in salt water fish tanks. There was a supertube that lifeguards could ride for free and we’d rent out the various rescue-craft to holiday makers and spend the money on Jack Daniels and Texan Steaks. We’d use the rubber duck to attack the lifeguards at other beaches, and then use our fish-slops to collect as many dobbletjies as possible to set traps in case of attacks. We’d Nollie Parade the groms, graffiti the ablution block, sand-board the dunes and surf the river mouth, the reef, the point and the bay. I wasn’t able to have sex at the time because I had an intractable foreskin, but in hindsight this was probably for the best.
I’ve been so slack with getting these questions to you that a few months ago I asked you to write two of your own, one of which was the following, ‘Settle this once and for all. Is the big bulge in your pants balls or dick?‘, to which you replied, ‘I’m all balls‘. A week or so after that, during a Movember event, you drunkenly resolved to get your junk checked out and subsequently lost some of your bulge. Do more of us guys need to wake up and get our tackle checked out?
No, just leave it until it’s really painful and you start splitting all your pants. Everyone will think your testicular tumour is your immense piece.