Dial M For Moya

June 25th, 2009 | 10:14 pm | Features & Interviews | 5 Comments


In a recent episode of internet-skate-tv-related-entrepreneur Pat O’Dell’s second effort at Slap message board gold (known as “Skate Talk”), a person whose identity is still unknown to me (honestly, I have no clue who it was) called up, speaking in a stereotypical Indian corner store owner’s accent and inquired as to whether or not the host, Lizard King, and a bunch of people that I don’t know, were familiar with Quarter Snacks, and subsequently, with the work of one of modern art’s most prolific figures, Geo Moya.

While I will spare you of going into the details of why being unfamiliar with Quarter Snacks :( equates to a massive loss of points (nothing short of a twenty-episode Epicly Later’d segment on Ryan Hickey will allow O’Dell to regain credibility in my eyes, and let’s face it, that’s never going to happen), but the fact that someone who makes a living off skateboarding-related deeds is not familiar with Geo Moya and his immense body of work is simply inexcusable.

I am not going to dwell on particulars, or provide a synopsis on Geo Moya’s genius and why he is one of the central pillars of American culture, because frankly, it is insulting to belittle his legacy to a few bulletpoints and superlatives. Conveniently, I have been provided with an alternative in the form of a video artifact that recently surfaced on the internet.

Jimmy Marketti, of taxi cab driver fight fame, uploaded Alphabet City, ABC skateshop’s 2004 video that was released after the shop had already been evicted from its 13th Street and Avenue A location, and after it had given up on trying to reestablish itself via the front room of Adrian’s apartment on 13th between A and B. Only in New York do skateshops release skate videos after they go out of business. I really wish I still had an ABC shirt, but obviously I’m a retard, and you never realize you should have held onto certain things until they’re actually gone. Similar to the time I let someone “borrow” my copy of the Infamous video that I stole from Danny Weiss.

The video itself, in hindsight, would seem pretty awful by outsider standards, considering that in its day, it was being paraded around by locals and minor shop affiliates well-versed in the art of hype as “the New York version of the PJ Ladd video.” Obviously, its position as a long-forgotten document of northeastern skateboarding relative to Coliseum’s entry, which is well nestled in the canon of classics, is the only indicator you really need to verify the falsity of the hypebrewing statements being tossed around the Tompkins Square Park benches circa 2003-2004.

The editing looks like it informed a lot of the 2004-era 5050skateboarding.com clips (by no means is that a compliment), the music-choices are up there with some of the worst decisions in skateboard video history and certain portions of it look horribly dated. In retrospect, it is not much of a ways off from the universally (and unfairly) hated Remedy video from 2001. That’s beside the point though. Because I reviewed the video when I was 15, and at the time, it was the greatest thing I had ever seen.

And that has a lot to do with Geo Moya, because he is one of the anchors that just slightly brings this thing back into the pool of relevancy, as his inward heelflip 5-0 grinds and backside 180s will forever be timeless maneuvers, long after all the assholes in the latest Transworld succumb to the scene and begin placing drugs in their noses and doing art in exchange for their skateboards.

Kerel is obviously the other crucial part that renders this thing a New York artifact worthy of a revisit, as it is the only part he ever had or will have, and it happens to be an insanely good part, bent with the misfortune of being edited to the WORST song ever (not in a “oh, that dude’s the worst!” sort of way exclaimed by skateboarders in the East Village over 100 times a day, but in a genuinely “wow, this really, really sucks” sort of way.) Lord only knows what subsequent parts from him would have looked like, but New York skateboarding definitely could have used someone who would learn switch flips, and then a month later, be landing on them down the Martin Luther King High School 13, in addition to someone who would do flip-in-to-slide tricks down nine stair handrails without cameras and make double heelflips look good.

Unfortunately, this was the last part that Geo Moya, the hero responsible for my outrage in concocting this write-up on a five-year-old video, had. Same for Kerel. A lot of the other people in it have had parts since, so they don’t matter. Combined with the inclusion of P.B.ER / Party Boy Eric / Union Squeric’s footage in the beginning of the video, these two parts will mark this video as a minor classic on the New York section of video shelves down the line. Chances are, if you were not around for its release and cannot understand what a massive cultural event it was, you’re going to think it sucks, which by most standards, it does. It all depends on how you relate to it, either it will usher in nostalgic notions of things past, or a wave of hate and “what the fuck were they thinking” comments. Either way, it is worth a watch. And yeah, like with most videos released in the past five years, the Flipmode video is better.

Alphabet City embedded after the jump.


Comment by ryan hickey
  • shut the fuck up moya.

    June 26, 2009 @ 12:17 am
  • Comment by gucci
  • “Jimmy Marketti, of taxi cab driver fight fame”

    June 26, 2009 @ 12:49 pm
  • Comment by thehillsidestrangler
  • i still have an abc shirt black size medium, and i remember skating the baby blue pigeon shop boards and mike wright claiming the banks 9 was “his” spot, then saying “ok me and brain wenning’s spot”

    June 26, 2009 @ 7:45 pm
  • Comment by Dave Thomas
  • this shit brings me back haha

    July 6, 2009 @ 11:26 pm
  • Comment by phil
  • dude, give it up, geo moya’s irrelevant. nobody outside of your circle of friends gives a shit about anything hes ever done. the highlight of his career is working at supreme.

    September 20, 2013 @ 6:26 pm
  • Leave a comment