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Fact not fiction, Dan Quinn style: a harrowing account of child abuse, Hot Wheels tracks and handcuffs

Updated on July 5, 2013

DQ touches on the Fred Riva subject in an early video

A vintage Dan Quinn video taken during the early part of DQ's YouTube career features a few of his greatest hits (stevia is "the sweet cure," Dan = Maitreya, etc.) together with another recurring DQ topic: Dan's abuse at the hand of Fred Riva.

Dan says that when he was 8 years old, he was "handcuffed to a tree" by uncle Fred.

As the story goes, after stringing up Dan and getting away with it scott free, Riva went on to become wealthy. Unfortunately, though, Uncle Fred died before Dan could sue him, win and get paid for the trauma he experienced. The Fred Riva story is one of Dan's many missed "million dollar opportunities."

"....and I should be a millionaire now, how many times over?"

Even though Fred is dead, Dan hopes to one day use the Fred Riva story to get famous on a talk show. Dan used to like to imagine himself appearing on Oprah. When Dan talks about this encounter, the Fred Riva story is always the most emotional portion of the interview. It's the part where he gets down on his knees next to Oprah and starts to cry.

Dan's mom
Dan's mom | Source

Dan speaks on Fred Riva to his mother (and then kicks her out of his car)

Dan's mom isn't nearly as sympathetic as he imagines Oprah would be when Dan starts talking about Uncle Fred.

"Oh dear god..."

"Bitch I f*cking brought your f*cking cat back from the dead!"

A profanity laced squabble between Dan and his mom gives us a deep glimpse into Dan's personal life. The argument seems to have started after Dan's mom threatened to throw him out of the house. Dan is all over the place over the course of the video, leapfrogging randomly from one topic to the next.

Dan kicks things off with the Fred Riva tale, but then he launches into a story about how he was falsely accused of rape multiple times at Notre Dame following his rebellious refusal to watch for a sweep during "The Play." Dan says he was set up for failure by the powers that be. He stops abruptly to make a few strange phone calls. He looks into the camera and addresses America. And then Flava Flav.

As Dan rattles on we learn that he's been (surprise) diagnosed with mania, and that he's off of his meds. And we also learn about hotwheel tracks.

"Did you go to town on my body with hotwheel tracks? Yes or no?"

Dan claims that his mom abused him relentlessly growing up, and compares himself to "Daniel in the lion's den."

At the very end of the vid, Dan claims that his mom has a "dent in her forehead" from where she was hit with a baseball bat when she was young. He reasons that her history of being abused by her family plus her hypoglycemia condition caused his mother to become an abuser.

Dan also accuses "Mrs. Quinn" of throwing her shoes at his sons. (DQ rarely talks about his ex-wife, and his sons never appear in his vids.) Dan's mom can hardly get a word in over Dan. She protests a little bit at the beginning of the video, but then falls silent as Dan continues to talk over her.

Dan's "Sunday drive" with his mother is one of the realest, funniest, creepiest DQ vids on the net. It's also one of the most puzzling.

Does Dan act out because he's had an abusive childhood and lacks a father figure? Or is he actually a deceptively intelligent manipulator who will do say or do anything to get his way?

At the end of the "Sunday ride" video, Dan shoves his mother out of the car.

"File the papers, bitch."

Who is Dan Quinn?

Is there any grain of truth in Dan's tales of woe or is Dan simply trying to get into the Riva bank account, or get famous on some talk show? If Uncle Fred really cuffed Dan to a tree, why? Did Dan piss him off, or was Uncle Fred a sadistic child molester?

Is Dan's personality real or is it an Andrew Dice Clay style put-on? Is there an abused little boy hiding from hotwheel tracks and perverted old Uncle Fred in there, or is it a cunning psychopath who is willing to do or say anything just to avoid having to get a job and pay rent?

Dan holds the camera and controls everything we see and hear in his vids. Jerry Springer and Phil Donahue aren't there to sort out this mess for us. We're left to make our own assumptions and draw our own conclusions.

Dan agrees to leave the Quinn household

Eventually, Mrs. Quinn reached an agreement with her 42 year old son. Here are the terms:

  • Mrs. Quinn will give Dan $2500 in cash
  • Mrs. Quinn will provide $2500 worth of stevia so that Dan can continue his research
  • Mrs. Quinn will give him either her car or grandma's car
  • Dan will tell his dying grandma that he loves her and that she "did a, uh, a really good job"
  • Dan will leave and not come back
  • Dan will not post anything derogatory on the Internet about Mrs. Quinn

Dan moves out


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      Ross Clifton 4 years ago

      Love the article, but his name was Fred REVA not Riva.