Customs X First Thursdays Interviews: Artist Mel Kadel
January 05, 2022 - CCS talks with Customs X First Thursdays artist Mel Kadel about drawings, music, coffee, and Hot Rod the dog.
CCS has a "brief chat" with the man behind the curtain of all your favorite comedy television shows, Doug Lussenhop. From those messed up GI Joe PSAs to Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! to The Eric Andre Show to the Office Hours podcast to CCS Pants freestyle raps; Doug has drawn from a lifetime of skateboarding and skate videos to become the secret architect of modern American humor.
Photos and interview by Matt Price.
CCS: Okay! So, let’s start basics: Name, age, where you’re from, where you live now?
Doug: Doug Lussenhop, a.k.a. DJ Douggpound, age, Ancient (laughs). I’m from Darien, Illinois and I live in Los Angeles now.
Where’s Darien at, what’s it close to?
It’s a suburb of Chicago. And, then I lived in Chicago for a while before I moved out here in 2003.
What brought you out to L.A.?
Well, pretty much every reason there is. I went to film school and I wanted to work on a comedy TV show, that was my dream. This is where it was kind of happening. I also grew up watching skate videos and I’d never been to Southern California. I always thought this was the place to be. In my mind, it was like this utopia of good weather and skating. Also, that’s where the entertainment biz that I wanted to get into was. So, all those reasons.
What was your first job?
Really? What’d you do for them?
Just editing softcore porn.
Really?! That was your first job? That’s such a Hollywood story I feel like. You're bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, you get out here like “I’m going to be on a comedy show”, and then for your first job, some guy is like, “Here, kid, edit this porn”.
I know (laughs), but it was so brainless. I had worked as an editor in Chicago, not doing anything cool, aside from making my own little videos for fun. I just knew how to edit pretty well already and this job was pretty brainless, it was like cutting down longer videos for the web and encoding them for Windows media viewer or whatever was going on. So, it was a lot of dragging a bunch of clips into a batch and just like going for long lunches. It wasn’t that hard of a job.
I’m thinking back to that year and I was probably about 15, I was probably watching those videos on Playboy.com.
I mean, these were not real porn, these were like…
But, I was 15, I wasn’t ready for real porn.
You eased yourself in? You used self-control when you did that?
In the beginning of the internet, when I didn’t know what it was, all I knew was like Playboy. So, I just remember going to Playboy.com, like looking over my shoulder, and loading those 10 second MPEGS or WMV’s, or whatever they were (laughs).
Yeah, like Realplayers and WMV’s.
That’s a wild time to have gotten into internet videos too because it was barely a thing at that point, right? But they say all media just ends up copying porn.
Tell me about skating back in Illinois. Paint a picture for me of what was cool then. What brands, what videos, what pros, or did you even know about the stuff then?
Oh I did, well that was before the internet when I first started. One day, there was a kid who had a Tony Hawk board with Tracker Trucks and copers (truck coverings) on them, and he was skating in the parking lot of the school. From there, all of a sudden it was this cool thing to do. Right at that moment, I think The Search For Animal Chin came out. I remember renting it and I remember having to rent a VHS player, because we didn’t even have a VHS player.
Just from the Mom & Pop video store. So, I rented a VHS player just to watch Animal Chin and watched it over and over and over. Then, I got into the older Powell videos, like Bones Brigade and Future Primitive.
Doug - 1989
Who was your first favorite skater?
I kind of liked the whole Bones Brigade (laughs). I don’t know, I was just so young. The way they’re in that video, they just seem like they’re just hanging out and having fun. I think I liked Cab and I liked Lance Mountain. Lance Mountain was my favorite of that crew for sure.
I feel like, as far as comedy stuff, he’s really funny too, ya know in the skits and shit.
Yeah, Lance Mountain for sure was the funniest one. He was my favorite. There was one in Future Primitive where I think he falls off his ramp and it’s just his head laying on the ground. It was just stuff like that.
Did that stuff influence you as far as wanting to make comedy stuff and getting into what you ended up doing?
Oh for sure. In the Lance Mountain backyard section of, I think, Future Primitive, Stacey Peralta would always cut to somebody reacting when somebody landed. They’re clearly just acting. I will still do that, I just think it’s funny.
In the CCS commercial you made…
In the commercial I made for you I did that!
I love it!
A lot of the editing tricks that Stacey Peralta did in “Ban This” and maybe “Propaganda”, he was starting to do digital glitchy stuff. I thought that was really cool. I kind of maybe borrowed some of that. But, I would say after those videos I was way into Santa Cruz videos and the OJ videos, like ”Streets On Fire” and Natas’ part.
That’s one of the parts that really stands the test of time. No matter where skating goes, when you watch that Natas part it’s still gnarly. It’s incredible.
After that, it was like the H-Street video. Do you know what that is?
Shackle Me Not?
Yeah, it was Shackle Me Not. I watched that so many times.
Young Danny Way. That was kind of like Danny’s first breakthrough part.
Yes, that stuff for sure. And then, A Reason To Live, The Plan B video Questionable, And, then of course Video Days soon after that.
It’s cool though, you don’t think about it until you put those videos in chronological order like that, when you realize all the videos in that era had skating and then had these fun skits in them.
Yeah, I appreciate those. Now, my favorite guys doing videos are Fancy Lad and the Worble crew, they make skating look really fun. I’m sure there’s a lot of other people too, but I don’t have my finger on the pulse. There’s so many videos now. Back in the day, it was just like, you only had a handful to choose from. I would go to the video store and they would have skateboarding videos and I would rent them. Then I would go to the skate shop that I worked at…
What shop did you work at?
It was called Skate Turf. It was in Darien. Like, one time we were going to The Turf, which was this concrete park in Milwaukee. It’s actually in Streets On Fire. That’s where they go to that weird indoor concrete park where there’s the Sonic Youth song. That’s in Milwaukee.
Jay Neumann, frontside air at The Turf. Photo by Peter DiAntoni
I remember that, because an indoor concrete park is rare.
It was a relic from the 70’s or something. A lot of the coping was like that, ancient, I called it like the ancient ridge. Where it’s not even coping, it’s like just an angled concrete edge. But, there was a proper keyhole and a clover bowl with pool coping and they were really nice but you had to wear copers in there.
So you didn’t fuck it up, like that was a rule? You had to wear copers?
Yeah, they didn’t want to ruin the coping. Except the really good guys could skate with no copers. They’d just like be doing these long “krrrrrr” (makes sound of someone grinding coping), it was so sick.
That’s kind of a fucked up way to differentiate who was cool enough, like their grinds just sounded cooler, like if you weren’t cool, your grinds just sounded lame.
I mean mine were just like a little, ya know, scratch. Anyway, we were going up to The Turf and we stopped at a Pizza Hut because there was an asphalt bank and we were skating it for a little bit. Some lady comes out and she’s like you can’t skate here, but there’s some place called Skate Turf a few miles away. It’s called The Turf, but she called it Skate Turf. So, that was like our joke, you know, “Let’s go to Skate Turf.” Then my friend, he was an older guy, he was actually a cop, but he opened up a skate shop and called it Skate Turf as our own little inside joke. I worked there and then that place got bought out by Skate Shack. If anyone’s from the area, the southwest suburbs of Chicago, you might remember Skate Shack.
I love that Skate Turf got bought out by Skate Shack.
And, they were rivals too.
Just like the Daggers and the Ramp Locals.
Skate Turf even put out this ad that was a dis ad on Skate Shack. I couldn’t believe they did it, I was like oh my God.
Where did shops like that run ads at that time?
It was more of a flyer that went out. It was this big drawing that was a caricature of the owner of the other shop. It was kind of taking personal shots and making fun of them. It was like, you guys are ballsy, man.
That’s like the whole World Industries Rocco stuff.
It was kind of fun. It was like that stuff!
That’s sick. So, you moved out to L.A. in the early 2000’s and did you just kind of get random editing jobs for a while?
So, I was just working at Playboy.com. I wanted to work on comedy TV shows, like at that time Mr. Show was my favorite thing. I wanted to work on something like that. And, then the Playboy thing, it was kind of like a real dark year. Just like that first year I moved out here, I didn’t really know anyone and I’m kind of shy. Then, luckily at Playboy the boss was like, “Hey, if another job comes along, you should take it because I don’t know if this department's gonna keep going.” So, that was awesome, because I actually got a chance and it gave me a little kick in the pants to get my career going… I didn’t come out here to work at Playboy. So I answered one Craigslist ad and it turned out to be Tim and Eric.
Really, the first ad you answered?
What year was that?
That was like 2004. I was an intern for their first show, it was a cartoon called “Tom Goes to the Mayor” and my only duties were to film them behind the scenes and make little behind the scenes videos. I think they were making that around 2004, I guess and then I think it premiered around 2005.
Little sidebar, but the first person to put me on to “Tom Goes To The Mayor” was my Dad. He was a big fan.
Dude, that’s so cool. My parents don’t understand the shows I work on and my humor. But, they’re happy and they think what I’m doing is cool, but it’s not really their thing. I think they liked Portlandia, they kind of point to that as something they can kind of get.
Did you work on that too?
I feel like editors are kind of like dark people in the entertainment industry. You don’t really know who a lot of editors are unless you’re in that world, but I feel like you’ve transcended that a little bit. It may sound stupid, but you’re kind of like a celebrity editor, and I feel like your style has influenced a lot of people, so you are kind of like a step beyond that. But, what other sort of stuff besides Tim and Eric have you worked on that people wouldn’t know of?
Not too much other stuff, I mean I just did a Red Hot Chili Peppers promo video. I did all the seasons of The Eric Andre Show. And I guess I did some commercials. I did some Old Spice commercials that were pretty funny, that I thought were pretty cool.
Was that when Wieden and Kennedy (Ad agency) did all that wild stuff for them?
Yeah, the really out there, weird stuff with Terry Crews. Oh, and I did the old G.I. Joe PSAs.
Oh, with Eric Fencler? Those were amazing.
Yeah, I worked with him and helped him edit the first few and I did some voices on those. A lot of people maybe don’t know that stuff. But, when people do know it, they’re kind of stoked and surprised that I had something to do with that.
It makes sense. It was like early viral comedy videos from when people would send you a link in an email.
I remember those getting quoted by skateboarders a lot. “Body massage machine, Go!”
Yeah, for some reason the style of humor I liked and skateboarding went hand-in-hand. Back then, skateboarding wasn’t that serious, it was sort of just goofy and fun. I don’t remember people being too cool with it. There’s nothing wrong with that, like being cool, but maybe just because I was younger too, we were just always goofing around.
When you first started to pick up a camera, was that through skating too? Or, was that through school more so?
I never really made too many skate videos. I just made a lot of comedy videos. I had a cable access show and I lived in the burbs of Chicago. I had four episodes of a cable access show that I made. It was this weird kind of sketch show. Mostly teaching myself how to edit and just using weird effects. Putting cool music over weird slo-mo things of sketches I made my friends do.
What was it called?
It was called, Space Station.
Is it online anywhere?
No, no. It’s under lock and key.
Oh, it’s one of those (laughs).
Maybe one day I’ll put it out there. But, it makes me cringe hard. But, back then people were into it. I don't know, maybe it’s just really dated or something. We were just really spazzy. I don’t need to release that. I’m going to make new stuff. That will be in the museum one day.
Wait till you die one day and then put it out, so you don’t have to be embarrassed by it.
Yeah. And, then they can find it. This was out before there was internet and I just had this long credit roll at the end it was like, please write to me…
...and I put my address, thinking that I’m going to get fans and I did get a couple letters.
Yeah? Were they weird or cool?
This one couple was like, we love the show and thank you for making it! And, then there was one other, just like a couple people that were clearly stoners, like, “Hey I saw your show on channel 68", or something. I don’t know why I would ask for anyone to write to me. I was like a teenager. It’s probably a fun time-capsule to check out at some point. That was in the early 90’s.
What kind of camera were you shooting on and what were you editing with?
Well, at first we did in-camera editing. My friend’s dad had an 8mm camera, or a Hi-8. And, it had the flying-erase head, so when you hit stop and go, there’s no glitch. So, I would say go, and then I would know how long it would take to start recording, so I would press the button and then say go, and I would time it out. And then I would go to where I wanted the next shot to be and then kind of rewind the tape in the little viewfinder, and then say go, and whatever the other person was supposed to say. But, that was before my cable access show. Then for the cable access show, I think I had S-VHS and a couple decks. It was pretty similar. I would have to rewind one and then hit record and then it would take three seconds and then I would cut to the next thing.
Then, eventually I got a little Sony deck, with the two wheels. Then maybe they were newmatic tapes, quarter inch tapes. I got this weird job at this wedding videography company with these two older stoner guys. I was just in this office by myself. I just had some weird jobs, like the suburbs of Chicago has some weird jobs, there’s some weird creepy stuff going on behind the scenes over there.
It’s cool you were able to get jobs kind of doing similar stuff to what you wanted to do.
Yeah! And, then there was Final Cut Pro and that was in the mid 90’s. Then, I was in film school and that’s when I was exposed to an early version of Adobe Premiere. As soon as I got to that, like day one in that edit class, I was just making things go backwards and slowing it down. I remember my friend who was next to me was like, how did you do that? For some reason, my brain was just wired for editing, I could just do it. It’s always been one of those things, from when I first sat down to it, I could just do it. I just knew in my mind that I could do it.
You’re just curious in a way that you’re able to just learn the software and figure it out?
In film school, I had to shoot on film and slice it together with razor blades and tape. So, you had to be very deliberate with your edits. So, after doing it like that and really getting in there and thinking about the edits, taping up these different scenes around the walls and putting them together, when I got to a non-linear computer editing thing, that was just so easy. I went nuts. I was like, I got this. This is child’s play compared to this other shit I had to go through.
So, that’s probably really crazy to go from the analog world to the digital world. There’s probably not a lot of people that can make that transition well.
I feel like I’m in this rare sliver of an age group of people that grew up with no internet and then with the internet. And, then also on the video side of things, linear editing and then non-linear editing. I started with linear and then jumped to non-linear, even though Avid was around, that was something that they had at high-end commercial editing houses.
Yeah, just perfect timing. So after you started working with Tim and Eric on “Tom Goes to the Mayor” you were just shooting BTS and just doing little edits for that? And then did those guys just see what you were doing with that stuff and say, you need to do more stuff with us? They just kind of noticed your talent?
I was kind of over-qualified for an intern position, but actually for what they had me doing, I was perfectly qualified. I was making funny little behind the scenes videos and one of those videos turned into an episode of “Tom Goes to the Mayor” as a bonus episode that they aired. After a few months of interning there, I would see that they kind of had a small staff and everyone was working late. There was all this photoshopping, it was a bunch of still images that they animated together with this Photoshop filter on it. So, I was like, you know, I have my laptop, I could help you with that. And, I knew how to use Photoshop. So, I just started helping out. And then, after a few months they hired me for a paid position.
So, that was an unpaid internship position at first?
Yeah, back in those days internships were not paid.
So, what did you do? How did you live when you were just an unpaid intern? Did you just do other work or…?
I think I was still doing Playboy a few days a week or something like that. Yeah, that only lasted a few months, the unpaid internship was three months and then I got hired.
Cool. That’s sick. So, when you went from “Tom Goes to the Mayor” to the Tim and Eric Show, did you have a lot of creative input on the editing side of things?
Yeah, I had a lot of creative input. It was cool because they’re doing so much work to just make the show, producing it, and writing it; that they were happy to have editors who did their own thing and polished it in their own way. So, it was a real fun work environment, just making each other laugh and you know it was almost like a competition, it wasn’t really competitive, but it was more like… if you want to relate it to skateboarding, everyone’s at the session and you’re getting each other stoked, it's like we’re all bouncing ideas off each other and even the other editors would take little tricks from each other. It was a really fun, creative environment in that way. And, Tim and Eric were so young and thirsty, you know what I mean? Just going for it. We were all just trying to push it. The weirder the better. And, Adult Swim was down too, when we would do weird stuff, they would encourage that, and just tell us to do more of that. More of the weird stuff. So it was this perfect storm of creativity, I guess. We were all just feeding off each other’s energy.
It’s totally like a session.
We’d edit for a week and then there’d be a screening of a rough cut of the episode. So, you’re sitting there and if no one’s laughing… When you’re in that screening when the lights go down, you really want them to laugh, I wanted everyone to laugh in the room. That was my goal. It made me feel good and if I was able to achieve that, it was like, mission accomplished.
It sounds like you all had a similar sensibility. Also it’s rare to have the people above you at a company pushing for you to make things weirder. It seems like with the goal of the corporate VP’s, or whoever is up top saying yes or no; they’re always like, broaden it, make it so more people understand it.
Yeah, this was almost the opposite. They pushed it to be weirder all the time, which was cool.
So you moved to L.A., you’re working on Tim and Eric, and you said you ended up at the house we’re at now in 2009. Did you skate this whole time, or did you quit for a while and come back to it?
Yeah, I feel like there was a decade there...I mean I never really stopped. I always had a board. But, in the last few years, I just got way more into skating again. There’s been times where I didn’t really know what was going on in the culture. I would go skate once in a while, but I think my career and editing were just taking so many hours, which I’m thankfully not doing as much of that now, I kinda got burnt out on that. So, I skate a lot more now.
What year do you think you got back into it or maybe starting paying attention to skate stuff again?
In the last 10 years, I’ve been skating more regularly. But, in the last year, especially when the pandemic hit, I really got into skateboarding. Like, I was skateboarding a lot. And, I had this new friend Robbie and all we did was skate almost every night at this little DIY spot that we made. Now I’m more stoked on it than ever. I haven’t been this stoked on skating since, shoot, maybe 20 years ago.
I feel like a lot of people got that. In the last year, there wasn’t much else to do.
And, I feel like, even though I’m an old fart...I feel like I’m skating better than I have since I was in high school or college. It’s so crazy.
Isn’t that a wild feeling, that you have days...like you’re the oldest you’ve ever been and you have days on your board where you feel like, I think this is one of the best skate days of my life.
Yeah! I still learn new tricks all the time! It’s just so rad that that can still be a thing. I remember when I turned 21, I thought "Oh man I’m too old". I kind of had this thing in my mind, like I should be an adult now, I’m out of college, but I was such an idiot. But, it’s like, that’s all you know at that point, you’re like, well that’s something I did when I was 14, like I don’t need to do that anymore. That’s really funny.
When did you build the ramps in the backyard here?
I’ve had this ramp for about 10 years. But, I’ve replaced the coping, put a bigger piece of pipe in there, so it can be a fatter lip, that you can lock into smiths with. It’s been shifting over time, I have to fix the cracks, patch it up here and there.
It’s probably nice to have, especially in a city like L.A. where sometimes you have to have a lot of energy to leave the house.
Yeah. I would never skate it by myself. It’s weirdly scary to skate. Even though it's only 2-3 feet tall, like if you’re jumping off your board, you can easily… my most dreaded fall is having the foot you’re landing on land back on the board. You know that thing, it’s just like a banana peel right to the elbows, or right to the head or something. And, that’s an easy way to fall on this thing. You can’t run out of it as easily. It’s just like right below you.
For sure. With little tight transitions you’re asking for it. So, I know you’re buddies with Todd Bratrud. How did you get to know Todd?
Oh, I made this sponsor-me tape and it was a joke video for Super Deluxe, which was this comedy channel. This was around 2008, I made this sponsor-me tape and it looked like it was shot on VHS. It was a couple real tricks and then I shot some of it on green screen...I think it’s wiped from the internet, but I’m going to put it back up. I’m gonna post it.
You need some sponsors is what you’re saying.
Basically. It was like imitating a sponsor-me tape, but then I’m doing these insane tricks. It’s done on a green screen, but I did it with After Effects, so it looks kind of smooth and I’m doing huge rails in indoor malls and I’m jumping off buildings and skating on impossible walls. You know, it’s silly and I basically get really hurt at the end and I’m like, my contact information is at the hospital. And, Todd was way into it. He was like, "Hey if you want to get sponsored I’ll sponsor you." It was supposed to be a joke.
That was when he was doing High Five still?
Yeah! The High Five sponsored me and I’m still sponsored by Todd to this day, but by his project The V now.
You made it through the three transitions. Because it went from The High Five, to Send Help, to The V.
Yeah, Todd and I keep in touch the whole time and he still sends me decks. And, he has been threatening a pro model, but that would be absolutely ridiculous. So, yeah, I got sponsored for real because of that joke sponsor-me tape.
(Laughs) That’s sick. So what other reasons do you think you skate more these days?
Now there’s just parks in every neighborhood. There’s parks in Atwater, there’s two in Echo Park, There’s Pasadena, South Pas, El Sereno, and all these spots now. So, now it’s more...I think, well maybe that’s a big reason why I’m skating more, is because the parks are so much more fun.
Yeah and they’re everywhere. Especially on the east side.
Oh, I was going to ask you about that, there’s a lot of guys in the comedy world that skate out here, but who’s the best comedy skater? I want to hear who your pick is.
Do you mean like actual skateboarding or comedy skater? Like, their comedy is factored in? (Laughs)
Let's say, who’s the best skater in the comedy world, like if you had a comedy skate contest, you know, like everyone involved, who do you think would win? Who’s ripping the hardest?
I was hoping you’d say that. (Laughs)
No, it depends. If it was a skating transition, maybe me. If it was flatground tricks, Tim. If it was just general street skating, Whitmer. I think between us three, we’re all pretty even, we all can do tricks together, the other guys can’t do. Tim can do frontside flips and tre flips. Whitmer can do that stuff too. I can’t do that stuff at all. They’re good at more, like, tech stuff.
You’re not flipping the board very often?
I’ve been getting into wider boards and slappies and manuals, and just old man tricks that don’t require flipping. But, I can do an impossible. (laughs) I’m down to have a game of skate with those guys!
We should do the ultimate comedy skate showdown.
There’s got to be other comedy skaters out there.
Well, you know what’s kind of funny, but I would consider at this point, even though he’s actually a legitimate pro skater, Spanky’s like a comedy skater because his edits are hilarious and they’re rad.
He was on my podcast yesterday and he is definitely hilarious, he would win by a million miles. He’s pro, we’re not pro. If I go pro for The V, then I could skate against Spanky. And, you never know, maybe I’ll land all my tricks. Even though they may not be all that advanced, he might miss a few, he might get some points deducted, you know? I’m just saying, I could have a shot.
Spanky dropping Doug's name in his recent Thrasher 'Top 5' article.
You talked about it earlier, how you’re good under-pressure. Maybe Spanky’s bad under-pressure?
I actually won a skateboard contest or two. Probably when I was 19 or 20, I entered this contest at a skateshop, this local one, and there were guys there that were way better than me. They had way more advanced tricks, but they fell, they landed a few tricks and fell on a few tricks. I landed every single trick in my run and I think the judges were looking at each other and went, well he landed his entire run. And, I did a few good tricks, I did a smith grind on a bench, I did a frontside 360 ollie off a little kicker, I landed everything, they weren’t like huge tricks or anything.
Consistency is the key I think in competition, right? You see that in pro contests now, kids will go for the hardest trick and miss it, and then the other kid comes behind him and just does a nosegrind on the rail, but lands it.
You gotta give it to the kid who did the nosegrind, sorry.
Exactly, that’s a six point trick. The other thing, would have been a nine point trick but he didn’t do it.
So, you get like two points for maybe getting into the trick, he didn’t land it.
The good contest skaters know that.
I was a pragmatic contest skater (laughs).
Yeah, you knew what you were doing. I mean, if you want to be put in to any of the big contests, I could probably put in a good word you know, with Street League, or maybe go for the Olympics in a couple years.
You know, I don’t like these contests. I think we should bring back fun contests, because I remember watching videos of contest back in the day. Like, the infamous tape of Neil Blender spray painting on the wall, that is just one of the greatest moments of skateboarding.
You want to hear a crazy story about that?! My good friend, Mark Carroll from Arizona, was at the contest as a kid.
Was that in Tempe?
Yeah. It was Street Style in Tempe. My friend Mark was there, his parents took him there. So, Neil Blender did that, tossed the can, he grabbed that can.
Does he still have the can?
So, he had it in a box of stuff in the garage at his parents house. He went looking for it one day and that box had been gone through and shuffled around and the can wasn’t there. And, he was like, “Hey was there a can in that box?” and his Dad was like, “Oh yeah, I just thought that was garbage, I just threw it away.” So, his Dad fucking threw it away.
But, he had it, he kept it. He knew in that moment, that that was the coolest shit ever and he kept the can.
That should be in the Smithsonian.
I know, I know. It’s the best.
The backside Smithsonian (laughs).
(Laughs) We need to start that. I uh…
That would be the skateboard museum that we need to start, The Backside Smithsonian. Monty Nolder presents, The Backside Smithsonian.
That’s so good. I agree with you though, have you watched any of the newer Dime Contest or anything?
Yeah, those are pretty fun.
That’s what the Olympics should have been I think. Highest, longest, fastest, best. There should be a high ollie contest, a long jump ya know!
Set the decks, but it has to be done with decks, not a pole. Like, how many decks can you do.
How fun would that be! Yeah, he won the Olympics because he ollied 12 decks.
Oh, yeah. And, the wallride challenge, where they kept moving the ramps further and further apart. I love that shit.
Yeah! Skaters love it and people who don’t skate can understand it, you know?
It’s easy to understand.
They insist on this tech progression model of contests.
Yeah, there’s plenty of that. That’s not going anywhere. I think besides the contests, like the Dime stuff. It would be cool if somebody did one of those old school street contest, like that Tempe one. Get those ramps. Just PVC rails, recreate all those ramps, a big launch ramp, you know? Just recreate all those ramps.
Yeah! For sure.
A big weird bank ramp and that little triangle thing, that spine, the wall ride. And, maybe a car.
I mean that’s the kind of shit that never gets old, it’s always cool.
I remember seeing a coffin at a contest and thinking like...I did a coffin at a contest once.
Yeah, I went underneath a ramp or something. I just coffined under it.
I wonder how many points you got?
I ate shit...I didn’t come close. That contest, I was just taking a piss completely. No chance of winning that one.
You saw Blender and you were like, that seems more fun, I’m just going to do that kind of shit.
I totally ripped him off at that contest. Anyone doing a coffin has got a thumbs up from me.
For sure, I love a coffin. Kids get tech with them now though and I don't know about that.
Let it be a coffin.
Let’s talk a little bit about how we came to meet. I saw your rap that day and you just shouted out CCS pants. I was like holy shit!
Well, the truth is I’ve worn CCS pants to skate before I met anyone involved with CCS, or before any of this happened.
Did you grow up with catalogs and stuff or, did you grow up with CCS?
No, not at all. It was only within the last few years. I think I just typed in skate pants, how do I order them, and CCS pants came up. So, I ordered them, they fit perfect, and I loved them for skating. They had a little bit of stretch, I mean, I sound like an ad right now, but like the truth is I wear them to skate and I wear them all the time. That’s just the truth of the matter.
Well, that’s your second sponsor now, you’re on the V and you’re also sponsored by CCS. It wasn’t a sponsor-me tape but it worked. So what's up with the commercial you made for us?
Yeah, I just got my friends that I skate with anyway and was like do you want to go skate and I set up a green screen actually, right out here, and I got some real tricks. I also put the camera on a tri-pod at a few spots, where I knew it would be cool, well where I envisioned like a silly trick. There was a tree, like somebody could do a grind up the tree. I got Robbie and ZZ Satriani, he’s got the ender. Then, Ethan Anderson, he’s a pro for Less Than Local, he didn’t even want to do a trick, he just wanted to be one of the reaction guys. He just goes, "Oh he landed it, can’t believe he landed it." So, he’s like a pro skater for Less Than Local.
I hope I’m not forgetting anyone. Oh, Whitmer’s in it! So, when I shot that weird guard rail, I was like just ollie on the ground and go in the pose of a salad grind if you can.
It's so fun. I feel like that kind of stuff never gets old, to me.
Yeah, I mean I did that in my sponsor-me tape. That kind of style. So, I’ve been doing After Effects and green screen effects forever. To make that we just went out and kind of improvised. What if you did a trick over there and a lot of times they’d get into the actual trick, there’s a couple where I made it in reverse. Where I had Whit drop in from his tail, but I made it look like he goes fakie up to a tailslide, or up to a noseslide or something. Just put it backwards. To me that’s so much fun. I want to do more skateboard comedy, like combo stuff like this.
Dude, it’s ripe for it.
It’s ripe! That’s the thing about skateboarding nowadays, it’s so many different little cliques and vibes going on. Earlier in the world of skateboarding it was smaller. Now it’s just so big, you can find your little zone.
Totally. There used to be like 10 companies to pay attention to and now there’s like 1,000.
Yeah, and they can all have different vibes, it’s cool. There’s always the punk rock kids that are doing it their way and they don’t care about what people think. They’re just doing their art, basically. They’re still getting by, you know?
And, they’re the ones making the best shit.
As long as there’s those kids out there, skateboarding will be fine. You can have your Olympics, I don’t care. As long as you have, give me, The V and give me Fancy Lad and give me Worble, just doing what they’re gonna do.
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