Five Favorite Parts With Josh Kalis

April 29th, 2016 | 2:45 am | Features & Interviews | 1 Comment

blabac kalis

Photo by Mike Blabac

As a coincidental addendum to the “Life on Video” series that has been going on all week, here’s a quick rundown of what gets one of the greatest champions of classic plaza-based street skating hyped. Stoked he included a certain two-song part from a personal favorite in there ;) Have a good weekend everybody.

All Roads Lead to Houston — The Skateable History of Houston Park

March 11th, 2016 | 4:12 am | Features & Interviews | 3 Comments

houston park

Skateboarding thrives on the meet-up spot and the skate spot. The skate spot requires an obstacle; the meet-up spot does not. And yes, the skate spot can double as both.

But what about the in-between spot — the proverbial comma of the session? It’s the place where you grab a bite, sneak a beer, talk shit, look at girls, kick your board around, and hopefully, summon the willpower to move on from ignore a “party on so-and-so’s roof”-text to continue skating. Astor Place was a one-time comma between downtown and midtown, but got phased out of popularity by the late nineties.

Even back when New York had actual low-bust plaza spots, Houston Park was unavoidable. In today’s current mode of cruising the Lower East Side until you hopefully maybe could find a propped up roadplate, it’s still unavoidable. Houston Park has metamorphosed with every cultural shift in New York skateboarding. What was once a B-list pitstop in the gilded age of unknobbed marble became a vibrant hub in this era of skating garbage and walls. We felt it only right to honor how far it had come.

Five Favorite Parts With Sean Pablo

March 2nd, 2016 | 5:12 am | Features & Interviews | 22 Comments

mehring sean pablo soho ollie

Photo by Jonathan Mehring

You’d think that by targeting someone in a younger demographic for one of these — Sean’s is probably the youngest person to do one — we’d steer selections away from the more recurring choices. Then you realize there’s a reason certain things are classics, yaknow? There’s always gonna be some thirteen-year-old who is just discovering the Rolling Stones, just as Gino’s nollie back heel off the three is never not going to be #relevant to anybody who enjoys the act of skateboarding ;)

Book Review: ‘Shit’ — The Big Brother Book

February 26th, 2016 | 2:54 am | Features & Interviews | 7 Comments

shit the big brother book 1

Skateboarders are nostalgic, and it’s hard to think of something as endlessly mourned since its demise as Big Brother. There have been tribute Instagram accounts, promises of the entire archive’s digitization, four-figure eBay listings of the full collection, and Dave Carnie even published a 700-page book of his writing from it.

Shit, released by DC Shoes, is a 224-page hardcover book that chronicles the 1992-2004 run of Big Brother magazine, and costs about $950 less than buying every issue at online auction. Sparing intros and an epilogue where eight principal editorial members reflect on their time at the magazine, the book consists of two-page spreads for every one of Big Brother‘s 106 issues. Each spread has the cover, the issue’s quotes section, and a scrapbook collage with highlights. Alongside the covers are behind-the-scenes stories from Sean Cliver and Dave Carnie, who split the blurb duties 53 / 53. It is remarkable how much information they retain from every issue’s creation. The full history of the publication plays out over the course of the book, and in many ways, coincides with the grander story of skateboarding’s resurgence into popularity throughout the nineties.

Dreamchasin’ — An Interview with J. Scott Handsdown

February 17th, 2016 | 5:20 am | Features & Interviews | 9 Comments

handsdown

Words and interview by Zach Baker

I’ve recently put off going skateboarding to: eat pho; be hungover; sleep; watch The Waterboy; stare at a screen all day doing nothing; be horny; hit the streets with dreams of sex that result in merely passing out on the subway until seven the next morning. I’m sure you have excuses that are even more legitimate. I bet you work all the time, or your girl likes to day drink and do brunch on weekends. Everyone has excuses and they all stink.

If you’re not familiar with the recent Insta-celebrity of @jscott_handsdown, you’re in for a treat. He has around 10k followers due to his frequent, highly-inspirational posts. Whether it’s in his tiny garage or the rusty local skatepark, he manages to skate more hours a day than even the most unemployable New York skateboarder, while working a schedule more grueling than any legal U.S. citizen’s should be. J. Scott’s motivation is simple and pure: he does it for the love of his family. I caught him one Monday morning as he was getting home from his graveyard shift.

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What’s your name, how old are you, and where are you from?

My name is Joseph Scott. I’m from Fort Austin, Texas and I’m 26 years old.

Where do you work?

I work at Exxon Mobil. It’s a local refinery in Beaumont, Texas. I’m a painter, or, I’m what’s called a painter. I sandblast the tanks at the refinery, and any tanks that corrode, we do all the repair work on those.

How long have you been skating?

Four years. I was painting blast at the refinery, and I just happened to get off early one day. I saw a little white kid on a skateboard grinding a rail outside. I was interested and said to myself, “I wanna try this.” I was grocery shopping and saw some fake board, I think it was a Mountain Dew board. I picked it up, rolled on it, and ever since then I’ve had a love and passion for it. I bought the fake board and ever since then, I’ve been skating. That’s all I live for now. Trying to learn tricks is challenging and gives me something to do, and I love it.