Man's Bizarre Quest: Own All VHS Copies of Speed
Ryan Beitz claims to have about 550
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Apr 27, 2014 5:29 AM CDT
A screenshot from the trailer for 'Speed.'   (YouTube)

(Newser) – Own a copy of Speed you're not watching? Donate it to Ryan Beitz—but only if it's on VHS. The guy is trying to collect every VHS copy of the movie that exists, Vice reports, and so far, he's at "like 550 or something," he says. "I haven’t counted in a while, 'cause who really cares?" It seems he cares, at least enough to create a blog about his World Speed Project, which he calls "larger than life." (And perhaps logistically impossible; he admits he doesn't "want to spend money on this." But, he says, he won't give up, because "that’d be the same as somebody saying like, 'It’s impossible to make the world a good place, so I’m not going to try.'")

It all started when he was buying gifts for his family, he tells Vice. "When I was at the pawn shop they had six copies of Speed, and I thought it would be really funny to get everybody in my family the same gift," he says. "Then when I bought all six it was, like, way too good. I realized it was really fascinating to have that many, like, same copies of a thing." His passion for Speed extends beyond the tapes: He's also trying to turn his van into the bus from the movie. For that project, he's got a Kickstarter page. The risks involved? "Ultimately," he writes on Kickstarter, "for the World Speed Project there are no risk because the project itself IS risk!" (Another hilarious recent Kickstarter involved raising $8 to buy a burrito.)

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Josh McNattin
Apr 27, 2014 1:37 PM CDT
@julianpenrod A year or two ago, I was out for a drive in my sporty type car that I enjoy driving. Someone was a little close to my tail for my liking so I accelerated to give us some space, but he kept up with me, I would change lanes and he would follow, we managed to get up to a decent amount of speed (not uncontrollable, but spirited). When I got to the next stop light the man mocked me about how fast my car was, how "awesome" it was that I drove that way and then finally breaking into explaining to me directly that he thought I was driving like an idiot. My reply to him was, "And you followed me the entire way". Your response to this man's pursuit seems a bit like that encounter.
Apr 27, 2014 1:09 PM CDT
An eminent example of the potential peril of “the entitled society” to civilization. The idea is simple to so many, endless amounts of free time for personal projects and limitless resources to pursue them. And, in the end, there is not necessarily anything wrong with that, in and of itself. A crucial point, though, is actually doing something significant and not just devoting yourself to and endless, aimless investiture of time and money with no real return except that it lets you pass the time, or something similar. Like seeing how many times you can walk the same circle over and over and over. “Too much free time” the saying used to go, which is not strictly true. When accomplishing something, no amount of time invested is too much, and when drifting wastefully, a second of time can be too much. Note, Mr. Beitz does not necessarily even like “Speed”. He purchased six on a whim to as a gag of presenting everyone in the family the same gift. Then he became enamored of having “that many, like, same copies of a thing”. Qualities of a compulsion, worse than that, a compulsion to engage in an activity that has no objective benefit and a questionable subjective one. You can give yourself, artificially, a feeling of accomplishment walking in a certain then thousand times, but that doesn't necessarily translate to anything useful. People who stab themselves, cut themselves with razors or arrange to have large objects inserted into their rectums may get a subjective thrill out of it, but often even that is in the form of self abuse or even just spitting in the face of God by acting depraved and self destructively. It seems reasonable Mr. Beitz' recreational consumption of marijuana and maybe even other hard drugs is considerable. A life shorn of anything ennobling, with the feeling that normal people get from actually doing something replaced by the combination of a drug removing any interest in anything but vegetating, a “buzz” of satisfaction provided by the drug, and a society that encourages vegetating wantonly idly, not doing anything significant, and provides resources to do that. Such actions as this once used to be called “vanity” and was considered something against the best interests of man and God The fact is, even aspects like free speech and concern for the feelings of others, placed in the hands of those without good will, can and has been eminently destructive. The society has been built around a idea that once encompassed having the ability to engage in the advancing, but has since metamorphosed into a situation of dullards mindlessly and disinterestedly wafting from one pursuit to another, just looking to kill time. The actual demonstrated quality of a people must improve along with their circumstances or it is all vanity.
Apr 27, 2014 11:49 AM CDT
"Then when I bought all six it was, like , way too good. I realized it was really fascinating to have that many, like , same copies of a thing." Nice to know that Valley Girls are alive and well. Twit!