Posts Tagged ‘Familia’

As A Service To Readers We Are Not Employing Any ‘Kid’-Themed Puns In The Subject Line For This Post About Jason Adams Confronting Some Weighty Grown-Up Issues, Even Though We Could Have Without Thinking About It Real Hard

June 18, 2012

There are hard truths in this world that prove themselves out over the course of time: kids grow up, things fall apart, sponsored tweens will land the 900 on a skatecamp vert ramp and graduate to a lucrative soft drink endorsement deal. Perennial kid Jason Adams underscores that first one recently in a sprawling, sometimes dark interview with Paradigm Magazine, in which he paints the rather bleak picture of confronting adult responsibilities as a kind of misfit toy set adrift from the island of misfit toys, partly thanks to the global economic collapse and also some general frustration with the cliquish nature of the skate biz.

He also, towards the end, gets around to challenging one of the most-flogged cliches to grace a TWS Pro Spotlight (or equivalent) — that old chestnut, “skateboarding saved my life.” There’s some hardscrabble substance black-hole stories where you’re inclined to take this as literally true, but there’s far more instances where you read a line like that and wonder well, would Skater X really have wound up in a burial plot had that Variflex not come into his life at just the right time, or would he instead have found a BMX bike, Magic the Gathering, a book on ventriloquism, gone off to pursue a liberal arts education at a public state university, gradually left off skating after moving off to land an entry-level job and secure a domestic lifestyle, etc.

In this interview, Jason Adams puts a pessimistic spin on the old phrase, wondering whether that lifelong muse, creative outlet and source of personal fulfillment may have left him with a body full of aches and a limited means with which to support his family, as the industry looks to cull pro ranks and veterans are expected to continue jumping through various hoops.

There are times I would have said skateboarding, or punk rock saved my life. To be honest, now I wonder if it saved my life, or ruined my life. It’s an inspiring thing and I think people make it out to be bigger than it was, but it’s no different than good art or good writing. If you think of it as a social clique, I would never jive with it, just like I didn’t jive with a lot of skaters all of the time. You can look at it two ways. It can be this beautiful inspiring thing that gives you hope. Or these things can be distractions, and that’s the negative way to look at it. I’m going back to life is shit … We need distractions. Is it a distraction, or a beautiful inspiring thing? To me it’s an inspiring thing, and it’s different to every person; it could be like their religion. It’s our religion basically and we can take it as seriously, or as lightly as we want to. It’s really dramatic to say it’s saving your life, or it could save your life. There’s a lot in that statement.

Jason Adams doesn’t come off as bitter in this interview, more circumspect and defiant and maybe tired. He talks about approaching life on his own terms and some consequences once you come out the other side a grown-up with heavy responsibilities. Another old skate-interview cliche he doesn’t challenge though is the one about the soul-crushing office job being just maybe slightly better than being boiled alive in hot lead, in spite of any fiscal antidotes to money problems, etc.

I remember being a kid watching my dad go to work and thinking, no fucking way dude, he’s a miserable man, I can tell. I’ll never be my father, I’ll never do that, I can’t do it.’ Sometimes I question whether it’s hurt me to go so against it. Maybe I should have just sucked it up. I’ll admit at my weak moments I do think that, but that’s just because I’ll be stressed. I’ll look at my kids and think they deserve better, but what does a bigger house mean? Everyone has weak moments; it’s whether you give into them.

Whenever I read the “rather die than work in an office” I used to think it was a bit rich for a pro skater to say, since they enjoy the talent to have the option, whereas the rest of us don’t have that luxury. It carries a little more weight when Jason Adams reiterates the point in this interview, though, since the way he describes it now his choices are more limited and his need to put food on the table a lot more real. His comments regarding disillusionment with the functions of the industry makes you wonder, though. Is working a white-collar job really the living hell it is sometimes described as? What are the most viable paths for transitioning out of the pro ranks as the autumn years approach? Should Jason Adams’ boards on Elephant also bear the nickname “the Adult”? Is this whole topic ‘too heavy for Transworld’?

A Familia Affair

July 23, 2009

mint_hubba
Pop life

BTO overlooked the Familia video* when it came out, a crime only partially excused by the fact that I was maybe occupied with Stevie Wiliams’ gripping saga about being stranded in some airport. But seeing’s how this is a video almost entirely dedicated to the bro-friendly concept of shared parts it fits in with what has rapidly become “bro week” in this space, a concept that will surely prove embarrassing to all involved at some point in the future. However, until we figure out what to make of Bam Margera’s recent TMZ appearances, we soldier on…

Familia, the descendant of Minneapolis mainstay Fobia helmed by Birdhouser Steve Nesser, eschews the meticulous music supervision and thematic concepts of the Benji Meyer era for a quick 15-minute overview of where some past and present Minnesota hitters are with their skating. It’s a low-key affair with a couple gutsy music choices (T-ihanna) that belie the obligatory glass cases/hardwood floors skateshop trappings, Uptown geographical controversies aside.

It seems like the current wave of ledge techery has caught up to the type of tricks Chad Benson has been doing for a while, things like the switch boardslide spin-around to front blunt and the switch k-grind fakie 360flip out. He shares time and space here with Nate Compher, who pops switchstance moves in ways that continue to raise “wha happen” questions around the Lakai/Chocolate situation, where one party or another looks to have dropped the ball over the past few years. Whatever the case he moves the schoolyard line battle forward with a nollie noseblunt-switch backside smith grind combination and later lands a switch b/s smith grind down Hubba Hideout, probably some kind of high water mark for the recent revival.

There’s frizzle fry grabs and a screwed up noseslide from the Zed while Dominic Randazzo musters a couple tricks in the tuxedo T, always a class act, and also a meaty lazer flip. A bit of a bro-tage features shop employees and reps alongside known bro Tony Hawk and TSM employees, and young Rada Espinoza lifts a massive frontside wallride at Jake Johnson’s favorite parking garage. The mighty Jamiel Nowparvar seems like he’s slowed down a little bit from his internet-conquering “Weekend Warriors” section but the switch kickflip b/s noseblunt is business of the most serious sort. Future video game star Steve Nesser does a bunch of ollies and 50-50s with some good nosegrinds both right and left-footed.

Emeric Pratt, the onetime Consolidator who recently cast his lot with Kris Markovitch’s Given boards, is paired with 5-0 happy Habitat flowee David Jaimes, which makes for the easiest type of shared part to watch because it’s pretty simple for mentally limited persons like myself to tell the two dudes apart. Jaimes does Davis Torgerson tech lines and Pratt still can’t keep his hands off his board, there’s a couple variations on the fakie flip stalefish/melon(?), also some kinda crazy bonk to rollercoaster ride. Crooked grind bonk? I rewound it a half-dozen times and still couldn’t figure it out. Check the vid here and let me know if it makes any sense to you.

*I don’t want to go back and check so let’s all just pretend I didn’t already title a previous posting “a family affair” kthxbye