Cleaning House: Hidden Treasures
The last year of my life has been filled with many great adventures and fun times spent with friends. I’ve traveled the country more than ever, following the Formula Drift Series, and have even found my way overseas to Rudskogen, Norway for Gatebil and Tianjin, China for the World Drift Series. I’ve done so much in such a short amount of time that I’m finding it difficult to keep it all in. Luckily, I’m a member of the media, which is a group of people who are constantly taking photos and video of each other for fun. I’m grateful to have hundreds of photographs reminding me where I’ve been and terabytes of footage as evidence of my shenanigans. Another method of holding on to good memories is to collect pocket-sized reminders along the way. For instance, this year I’ve kept a Volkswagen badge that fell off a car racing up Pikes Peak and a photograph slide/business card from my good friend Lieze Truter in Georgia. Pictured above is a small portion of a patch collection dating back as far as 1992, given to me by my grandfather when I was only four years old.
Another way of remembering good days gone by is to merely stash away random everyday items. Shown above is a Tech-Deck Mini that got me into plenty of trouble in middle school, my first new cell phone from when I was about 16, a Creature Skateboards beer coozy given to me by my good friend Steven Reeves who was Am for them at the time, and a silly little key-chain that came with one of my hundreds of pairs of skate shoes.
Here we have four lost (and obviously found again) keys to my ’92 240sx, reminding me of how long I’ve owned that faithful little car. I know I have at least six total, as I found two more after this photo was taken. Attaching them all is a key-chain from one of my ten or so pairs of the signature shoe of Leo Romero, who has been my favorite skateboarder for quite some time.
Next, we have a small collection of iconic skateboard decks, including my first ever with the date of purchase written on the side. Until I moved to Portland about two years ago, I kept every single deck I ever skated, which was a lot. Embarrassingly enough, I once had a habit of breaking boards when angry, causing me to go through up to four decks a month. When I moved, I had nowhere to keep my hundreds of skateboards, so I chose a select few that meant the most to me. I still miss all the others… Above that stack is a “Yeah Right” deck signed by most of the Girl Skateboards team. Included are Ty Evans (CHOMP ON THIS!!!), Brian Anderson, Rick Howard, Brandon Biebel, Jereme Rogers, Paul Rodriguez (my idol at the time), Lance Mountain, Mike Carroll, Marc Johnson, and Rick McCrank. It was literally the most exciting moment of my life when I met and skated with them at my favorite skate-park, the Department of Skateboarding in Portland, during their High Fives up the I-5 Tour in 2003
Pictured above is a sample of my nearly endless skate video collection. Some of these old VHS tapes really shaped me as a skateboarder and helped define my idea of “cool”.
Girl Skateboards’ “Goldfish” showed me the roots of technical street skating.
Zero Skateboards’ “Misled Youth,” which was the first skate video I ever owned, would often times be watched several times through, back-to-back, and occasionally in slow motion. Yes, the entire video in slo-mo. Haha. It also introduced me to Jamie Thomas, who would remain my favorite skater for years to come.
The first video that got me hyped on motion graphics was “7 Year Glitch” from New Deal. The skating in it is great, but the intro with all its layers and movement really caught my attention.
“Burn This” was the first video I ever created, back in 2002. I was a freshman in high school, taking my first and only video class. I used some terribly outdated machine the size of a desktop computer that was incredibly slow and could accomplish very little. Don’t bother asking to watch it. I won’t allow it.
Tiltmode Army’s “Man Down” showed me that skateboarding isn’t meant to be serious and epic. You should never stop having fun.
“In Bloom” by Transworld Skateboarding showcased many up-and-coming amateurs, including Chris Cole and Paul Rodriguez, both of whom I still look up to.
Flip Skateboards’ “Sorry” introduced me to Johnny Rotten, believe it or not, and really upped the bar for street skateboarding at the time. Later in life, I would actually show them the best the streets of Medford had to offer when they visited in 2008ish.
“This is Skateboarding” from Emerica Footwear blew my brains out the back of my head with insane parts from Bryan Herman, Leo Romero, Andrew Reynolds, and many more, all of whom I would meet just a few short years after.
Shorty’s Skateboards’ “Fulfill the Dream” would forever and always keep me from liking Chad Muska. That is literally all I know of this video – how much I couldn’t stand Chad after seeing it. Such a kook.
Last but not least, we have Girl Skateboards’ “Yeah Right,” which single-handedly changed the way the industry viewed skate videos. The production value of this video was very high at the time, was directed by none other than Spike Jonze, and even incorporated the high speed camera used to document the testing of the atomic bomb, which shoots at an incredibly fast frame rate.
This dirty little gem was saved for last, as to not offend the casual scanner. This piece of “artwork” was created by Leo Romero during an autograph signing at the skate shop where I once worked in Medford. Imagine your hero creating such an explicit sketch in front of hundreds of eager children and parents alike. I was a bit surprised to say the least, but knew it had to be saved. I had he and Bryan Herman sign it before removing it from the view of angry customers.
I really hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into my past, as I can honestly say this is the most of myself I’ve put into writing in many years. The photos may not be that exciting, but keep in mind that I just shared with you some of my fondest memories that I had completely forgotten until just now. Please take some time to look back on the brighter moments of your past. I promise you won’t regret it.
Tags: 240SX, 7 year glitch, anti hero skateboards, bryan herman, creature skateboards, ed templeton, emerica footwear, flip skateboards, fulfill the dream, girl skateboards, goldfish, hotskates, hotskatescompany, in bloom, justin shreeve, leo romero, man down, misled youth, new deal, nsfw, original artwork, porsche parade, professional skateboarder, s13, seven, shorty's skateboards, skateboarding, sorry, table cloth, this is skateboarding, tiltmode army, toy machine skateboards, transworld skateboarding, tws, vans footwear, volcom clothing, yeah right, zero skateboards