Rob the Bouncer has left the club
June 28, 2014 1:47 PM   Subscribe

Bob Ihlenfeldt, aka Rob Fitzgerald, aka Rob the Bouncer, died recently. I started reading about his exploits as a bouncer years ago. I bought his book. I didn't know that he was also the Angry Coach at EliteFTS. Here is the last post on his later blog. He was always an excellent writer.
posted by philquadra (20 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
I loved Rob's writing though I never met him.
posted by jfwlucy at 2:01 PM on June 28, 2014

I also really enjoyed his blog and his book. Is there any more biographical information about him on line? I would be curious to learn more.
posted by jazh at 2:02 PM on June 28, 2014 [1 favorite]

posted by oddman at 2:20 PM on June 28, 2014

What a shame. During the height of the blogging movement in the mid-2000s, Clublife stood out as one of the absolute finest in a very crowded pool. It seems to me that Rob's blog perfectly fulfilled the promise of what blogging could be at its best - sharing unique, eye-opening life experiences that would be unfamiliar to most people in a frequently hysterical, engaging, well-written, insightful way.
posted by The Gooch at 4:27 PM on June 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

I read his blog for a while. It was always interesting and insightful. I'm sorry to hear that he died.
posted by Slinga at 5:19 PM on June 28, 2014

Sorry to hear this. I always enjoyed his writing.
posted by sfred at 5:21 PM on June 28, 2014

Wait, what? I hope there is a stained glass window of Rob in the Church of Our Patrons of Early Blogging, right next to Gord and WaiterRant.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 8:01 PM on June 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

That's a shame, I really enjoyed ClubLife.

posted by dr_dank at 8:13 PM on June 28, 2014

Wow, never thought I'd see him mentioned on Metafilter. I never read his bouncer work but loved his Angry Coach blog.
posted by schroedinger at 8:49 PM on June 28, 2014


I read a lot of his Clublife, he was a good writer and his stories always had the ring of truth. I didn't know about his fitness stuff. I wonder what got him.
posted by bashos_frog at 9:16 PM on June 28, 2014

Wow, other things I did not know:
He was an Army Ranger in Iraq.
He was NYPD counterterrorism.
He coached football for over 10 years at Cardinal Hayes high school in the Bronx.
posted by bashos_frog at 9:27 PM on June 28, 2014

It appears he died of a blood clot.
posted by oddman at 10:57 PM on June 28, 2014

I never heard of him as the Angry Coach, but I used to love the sardonic humour of "Standing on the Box". RIP.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 12:08 AM on June 29, 2014

I read the last 20 or so posts on Standing On The Box, and I feel like I must be missing something, because he just comes across as a violent jerk, e.g. saying that he understands bullying and expressing the desire to physically intimidate a man he refers to as The Pussy. Can someone point me at some of his good writing?
posted by fivebells at 7:25 AM on June 29, 2014

Yeah, I don't want to speak ill of the dead, but based on the last bunch of posts alone, he really sounds like a bully and a jerk. I'm kind of surprised because he has been much lionized in the wake of his untimely passing and I expected more than just bluster from an alpha bro who, like many of us, has clearly read his share of Henry Rollins and Denis Leary. Maybe his actual stories are really entertaining and cool. Or maybe he was just going through a thing that, unfortunately, is now the last thing he got a chance to talk about in this world. I don't know. I am trying to extend the benefit of the doubt because a lot of people have expressed the sentiment that an important voice has been lost here, and I'm inclined to believe them but I don't see it based on this.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:56 AM on June 29, 2014 [3 favorites]

Aw geez, I loved Standing On The Box back in the day. Like The Gooch said, his site was what early blogging was all about---someone with an interesting life, but no connections or high education, now able to make himself heard.

He'll be missed.

posted by ThatFuzzyBastard at 9:45 AM on June 29, 2014 [1 favorite]

> Can someone point me at some of his good writing?

>>I am trying to extend the benefit of the doubt because a lot of people have expressed the sentiment that an important voice has been lost here, and I'm inclined to believe them but I don't see it based on this.

One thing I noticed in looking back at the ClubLife archives linked in this FPP is that the earliest available posts in the archive are from December 2005. I am almost positive I was reading this blog at least a year or two before that (which seems to be confirmed in the archives, the first post reads, "Back on the air. Thank you for your patience.", indicating a return from a hiatus rather than the beginning of a brand new blog). Not sure what went on with the previous archives (don't remember if this was a domain switch or if previous posts were deleted?).

I know this probably seems like a cheap out ("His best work is no longer available to be read"), but it does appear that the pieces that hooked me onto the blog are not readily available unless I'm missing something.
posted by The Gooch at 10:07 AM on June 29, 2014 [2 favorites]

Dennis Leary stole Bll Hicks act. Bill Hicks borrowed his act from Henry Rollins because he couldn't sing. Neither could Henry Rollins.

Bill Hicks is oddly worshipped on Metafilter though he yelled "Cunt!" at this woman over and over and over.

I don't see overstated anger as being trenchant. Just a bunch of angry people. I thought "Rescue Me" was a pretty good show though.

Click on the Bill Hicks link above and tell me that's ok. I count six "cunt" and one bitch.

How many do you count?
posted by vapidave at 11:13 AM on June 29, 2014

On non edit what kittens for breakfast said.
posted by vapidave at 11:16 AM on June 29, 2014


I really enjoyed the bouncing stories from Standing on the Box. The blog was a super mix of entertaining stories combined with a behind the scenes glimpse into annyc clubbing (something I know nothing about). His bouncing stories took a very strong position that this mythical nyc club was a place full of losers, rather than the coolest place on earth... pretty comforting to someone on the outside.

In my opinion, Standing on the Box never recovered from Rob's retirement from bouncing (or at least bouncing stories). Later posts were always unsatisfying, but I still kept coming back now and then to see if the blog ever recovered. I always wondered what this professional career of his actually was that resulted in him flying around and suffering inter-office conflicts.

And, of course, it was sad to click on standingonthebox and find out that Rob had passed away.
posted by jazh at 12:33 PM on June 29, 2014 [3 favorites]

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