Ok yeah we get it….you’re so core that you hate Shaun White. Call him a ginger, call him a kook, call him bad for snowboarding even. It does no good. First off….pretty much nothing is “core” in snowboarding anyway, and all I can say is you shouldn’t spend time and energy on hate. All of the above things about Shaun are true in my opinion. Even when he was a little kid, the front line kids working at Surf Ride could tell you stories of White arrogance and entitlement (mostly from his mom back then). He wins a lot of contests, he likes to spin and flip really high, he wears horrible tight clothing, and he thinks his shit only smells like heirloom (flying) tomatoes. All that said, he’s not why you got into snowboarding.
photo courtesy of yobeat.com
He’s not ruining anything about snowboarding (at least not anymore than the rest of the fat cats) for me. I still get to wake up in the shadow of the Wasatch Mountains. I still get to be up the cottonwoods early on a pow day with my friends and family. I still get to have that feeling of cruising through trees, while leaning back to keep the nose “above water”. I still get to float big..slow…backside 180′s. Simply put, I still get to stand sideways on snow.
E-Stone photo of Forrest Shearer courtesy of snowboardermag.com
I get to do all of this because 30 years or so ago, a handful of people like me decided that they would just go out and try something new. Those guys are the reason that Shaun White gets to do all of this as well. Ultimately his association shouldn’t affect your life. Find inspiration from the people that mean something to you in snowboarding.
photo courtesy of bluebirdwax.com
If you really care that much about the kid….then you’re probably snowboarding for the wrong reasons. I know it sucks when something you truly love gets profiled through the lens of a douchebag though. No one wants that. But when you really know why you love something, then the sun shining on a steaming turd shouldn’t bother you. Go find yourself exhausted and quad blown on a bluebird powder day, and then ask yourself….does Shaun White really give a fuck about what I think?
Damn….huge moves are being made by Jake and the crew in Burlington. Opinions are like assholes…I know you all got one. If you snowboarded in the late 90′s at all…. Forum, Foursquare, and Special Blend were huge. Now they Rest In Peace. It’s a business kids….I wonder where the riders will branch out to? Expect to see some other teams get beefed up. Check the details here.
Johannes Kroemer photo courtesy of ESPN
I went to see Aaron Draplin‘s Tall Tales From A Large Man lecture series here in Salt Lake City this evening. AIGASLC sponsored the event at the UMFA, and it was absolutely everything I expected. Draplin was incredibly inspiring, and amazingly funny as always. Anyone that uses Saul Bass as a verb is all time in my book. I picked up a limited edition Utah Poster, as well as a new copy of A Drive Into The Gap by Kevin Guilfoile (published through Field Notes)…..this was an incredible night all around, and one I will not soon forget.
Got a few million on hand? If so then you….yes you…have the potential to purchase DVS Shoes. On June 13th there will be an auction to see who can bail Brian, Kevin, and The Gav out of bankruptcy. It looks like they’ve been doing everything they can to keep that ship afloat. We wish all the boys well (still can’t believe dude is VP of anything). Check the details over at TW Business, and start saving some dough…..shit it’ll probably be an energy drink company.
photo courtesy of shop-eat-surf.com
Energy Drinks are evil. I hate that our sports are now fueled by these terribly unhealthy products. I’m sure it’s tough for young athletes to turn down hefty money from companies like Red Bull, Monster, and Rockstar, but man it bums me out. These people are marketing their products full of chemicals, sugar, and garbage to us and our children. It’s not ok. If you drink that shit….stop it. It’s time We Drink Water. The people behind Drink Water are people I truly respect…for their riding…and their ideals. Support them, and go buy some product…10% of proceeds go to help those in real need…via water.org
photo courtesy of wedrinkwater.com
photo courtesy of snowboarddigital.com
I just had to post about how pumped I am on the new Draplin shit that showed up this week…that is all.
I don’t have part numbers or descriptions on the stickers, but it feels like Aaron’s old man is looking over us now…SHITCHYAH.
Yes I’m a dork…
Man I wish he would come here to speak….
I’m sick of the snowboarding vs. skateboarding thing. It’s clear there are differences culturally between the two. I’ll be the first to admit that there’s a bunch of shit that bugs me about both. I’m really trying to be more positive lately though, and I’ll leave the super rants to Avran. In the mean time, I’m stoked to see that 686 Outerwear and Fallen have come up with a collaboration line. I’m really into the Classic Fit Jeans and the Field Jacket. It’s rad to see The Chief isn’t too narrow minded. Check out more over at TW Biz.
The Dinobots crew is a solid group of shritizens….yeah I made that word up. Most were raised here behind the Zion Curtain, and grew up with snow in their oatmeal…the lightest and nicest snow in the lower 48 by the way. Cole Taylor (not that one) posted up their first bone zone session of the season…check it.
Here’s two you need to watch…
The second is a DIY skate short from Sean Pointing: Antifornia…Dave Dixon has some good insight.
Erik Leines has always killed it. He and BJ destroyed the bird from early on, and never looked back. Celtek is leading the way again with some touch screen integration technology that will mean even more growth for the brand. Stoked for the Leines family, and Celtek. Check the info and interview link over at TWBusiness.
photo courtesy of business.transworld.net
….and I just had to add SFK and Doman to this post because well….they’re what snowboarding and SLC is all about.
photo courtesy of push.ca
The former VP at Adidias Originals has a hefty resume for sure. It seems like good people tend to surround themselves with good people. Stoked for these guys all around.
photo courtesy of crookedtongues.com
Poler is a new company that you need to support. Poler makes camping gear and apparel that’s focused on simple clean design. They’re run by good people, based out of Oregon, and their team is packed full of heroes (stoked to see who they pick up on the surf side too). I look forward to testing their gear in the coming months. Follow them on Twitter then go buy some Poler Stuff .
photo courtesy of poler.tumblr.com
Willie McMillon is bad ass. For those that don’t know him, he’s the mastermind behind bluebird wax. You should buy some. Kevin Jones is legend status. I’m sure you all get that much (I can’t wait to see his part in TB20). If you don’t get it, just look here. Snowboarders of a certain age group (those that grew up ripping in the 80′s and 90′s) can probably give a ton of knowledge to some newbies. I’m not complaining about “kids these days,” but I will say that there are more than a few who could use a little more heart.
photo courtesy of http://business.transworld.net
Willie & Kevin have heart, and those of you that live in an Olympic X Games vacuum, need some of that in your life. The bottom line is that what we do is special. Whether you skate, snowboard, or surf you know that each of these sports are distinct. Each of these cultures are unique as well. I spend a fair amount of time on here bitching about the sides of our sports that are exploitative and full of corruption. The reality is that we are the people that truly push progression in our worlds though. We drive the markets. Basketball players just want wins. The same is true for most team sports/professional athletes. We may be competitive with our friends, but in the long run it’s not about who wins….it’s about who is shredding the best today. Maybe tomorrow it will be you. I’m so happy to say Bluebird is working on boards now. Check the interview here, and show some support in the 2012-2013 season. With these two at the helm the future is bright.
Life is about decisions and fine lines. As a sponsored athlete in an “Action Sport” (god I hate that term) you have some decisions to make. Assuming you are at an amateur or professional level, you will be faced with many decisions in reference to your “career.” I’m a nobody (though I’m a nobody that people actually seem to listen to), but here’s my opinion on some questions you may come across. My credibility? Oh I’m a 33 year old father of two with a super hot wife and a day job….and I’m huge in Japan. If that doesn’t do it for you then why the hell have you even been reading this thing? Anyway here it is.
1.Should I move to a place that could help my career?
YES.…more or less. Look there are exceptions I know. And yes it might give you more character to grow up skating in New England, surfing in Cocoa Beach, or Snowboarding in Michigan. However, the point of this whole thing is to get noticed. It’s no secret that you’ll get noticed easier when you’re near the leaders in your industry. I know that LA is full of Kooks, Salt Lake bars close at 1:00, and locals at Haleiwa aren’t always the most friendly. That shit can be worked out though. Maybe some of those places don’t have the character of your hometown, but life is long, and you can always head back once you’ve accomplished what you left for. So if you can make it happen relatively comfortably, then I say yes….make the move…at least for a while. Or don’t. Just freeze your balls off in North Dakota I don’t give a damn.
photo courtesy of warpedmelody.tumblr.com
2. Should I quit school?
NO. I know I know you think you’re peaking at 15 years old and need to drop everything to get in a van, get footie, and travel the world. It is tempting. The reality of it is though that your schooling can continue in conjunction with your career. Many ex athletes end up with little education, some shitty habits, and a half ass job in the industry. Believe me that you will be better served to have a couple degrees and a level head after your athletic career ends. If you’re smart enough to hire a CPA to help manage your earnings during this time also, you’ll come out with a chunk of change, a few damaged body parts, and at 30 years old, be ready to continue with a new chapter. Or whatever quit school, blaze up, and don’t wear a rubber. Natural Selection’s a bitch.
photo courtesy of 1957timecapsule.wordpress.com
3. Should I take that corporate sponsorship?
MAYBE? A friend of mine (BurritosandSnow) once said that it’s OK to make money, just be careful how you make it. Look carefully at who you choose to represent. I know that not everyone can skate for Rick Howard or Jim Thiebaud, but that doesn’t mean it’s ok to ride for El Pollo Loco Skates….I do love their chicken though. Does riding for Burton mean your not core? Do you have to paddle out with Mitch’s Fins to be underground? That’s for you to decide ultimately. I would just say be careful. There are large companies (Nike/Adidas/Bonfire/Quiksilver/Etc.) that have hired good people with history in the industry. Many of these guys have given them the R&D knowledge, and cultural credibility to maybe make it worth your while. Gonz skates for Adidas, Joel Tudor and Al Knost hang heels for Vans. Like I said just make sure who you represent is actually good for the sport that you love. Or whatever. Shred for slim jim and tear into the spice you turd.
photo courtesy of skateandannoy.com
Overall I say go with your heart, and don’t be afraid to take a few risks along the way. Be smart, don’t party too damn much, and work work work. Blue collar work ethic can put you at the next level. Good luck and don’t sacrifice who you are for what you do. Or sell out as soon as possible, pound some Mt. Dew, and be hated by the people that helped you get there.