Posts Tagged ‘the Storm’

D3 The Movie

September 19, 2021

A good tale richly told is an oat for the soul. By now, the story of the Osiris D3 2001 is a tale knowed by many, and familiar to millions more. A rapid rise, debauched excess, noise, tragedy, riches, confusion, an all-too-public fall and, yes, a long road back to redemption. It is a story uniquely American in the telling, and it may be the story of us all.

Take not its name in vain. A vision out of time, gaping lace holes and a tongue a-puff, soles as flat and broad as a hippopotamus’ hoof. From there, things grow murky. This was all right around the turn of the century. Onetime Evol filmer and noted Robotech fan Brian Reid co-founded Osiris shoes and put on his onetime roommate David Mayhew, amongst others, developing a series of professional-use and “crazy layered” shoes intended for the commercial market. While Osiris dodged murderous factory managers in South Korea and jealous h8ers stateside, the original D3 hit stores in 1999.

In skateshops, on Limp Biscuit stages and at random ‘raves,’ the D3 stood tall, shouldering aside rivals with its burly physique and raw grip. And yet behind the scenes, discord and vitriol soon fermented. Bad feelings over allegedly purloined D3 royalties preceded David Mayhew’s exit from the big Storm tour bus; in the years since, barbs and sideways comments over design and inspiration credit for a shoe that is widely regarded as a prime example of early 2000s excess, for years a kind of subcultural albatross heralding minifigure hats, toilet-brush goatees and metallic turntables, slowly spinning into infinity.

Did the phenomenon manifest entirely from the vision of A-Team Member David Mayhew? The wizened hand of Osiris footwear architect Brian Reid? The truth may remain unknowed, and few cared until money came back into the picture via the recent puffed-out tech shoe revival, with a sort of vindication for David Mayhew via A$AP Rocky’s UnderArmour-produced D3 clone that landed the former Maple pro on the GQ web page. A potent stew of sneaker-centric content farms, the D3’s rich narrative and that ever-seductive intoxicant, righteous anger, touched off a series of think pieces and jousting interviews. From there, the D3 media war escalated with a Vice magazine mini-documentary, in which Brian Reid and David Mayhew further traded claims and shots.

This week brought a new chapter, as David Mayhew sat for a 3.5 hour Nine Club panel discussion covering the D3 design process. “In my mind I was like, ‘I want something buck wild,’ he relates. “I saw this hiking boot, had the vision, called Brian and tried to explain it over the phone… he came up with the bottom, and the back… it obviously became a hot kind of button issue, but at the end of the day I don’t care what people believe, I can put my head on my pillow.”

Obviously a feature-length film is the only logical next step in this decadeslong war over the monstrous footwear’s legacy. And yet the media arms race so far has overlooked the D3’s real and decisive role in skateboarding culture. Beyond the double-kick deck, urethane wheel and cut-off jean hem, few products have proven as pivotal as the D3. The excess it represented served as a sort of conceptual rock bottom for the overengineered puffy tongue era, setting the stage for the resulting simple-shoe renaissance that followed in the mid-2000s — and no company capitalized better on this shift than Nike Inc. and its classic Dunk silhouette, widely aped by competitors who subsequently fell over themselves in a rush to commoditize minimalist shoe models. Rather than munch popcorn as David Mayhew and Brian Reid stake competing claims for the D3’s dubious stylistic attributes and still-seeping cash flows, they perhaps should be recognized as authors of a cautionary tale that remains relevant as ever, as shoes again gather puff and reach deeper into the ever-confuzzled consumer’s wallet.

Will ‘D3 The Movie’ fully capture the D3’s corrective role in the ever-mutating skate shoe continuum, or is the longer runtime of an exclusive streaming series justified in this case? Or is this ‘Max Max’ type beef that can only be resolved in the ‘Thunderdome’? Can it be true that the original concept for the D3 included packaging each pair with a miniature set of oars to justify a price premium recognizing the shoe’s capacity to serve as scale-appropriate liveboats for common household pets including gerbils, hamsters, mice and even juvenile guinea pigs?

What Gemstones Remain Undiscovered as Content Miners Pick Clean the Caverns of Skating’s Past?

December 3, 2016

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As the information age and its college dormmate, the digital revolution, fire up the bong and begin to shake their 1D20s and 1D12s, all becomes clear. In this smartphone-cradled realm, plated armour and halberds are enchanted with mystical powers via every new social media connection, and the currency of the kingdom is not gold pieces, but the minutes and hours that a web site is able to waste for people while they are at work or school. It is a fertile and lush land where ancient treasures lay hidden beneath piles of broken links and half-remembered Geocities pages.

What remains though when advancing into a mine long abandoned by content-hungry Dwarven lords? Torch aloft, our adventurers descend past craters and caverns where long-ago interviews with Fred Gall, Andy Roy and the Muska were extracted; deep pockets still are visible where the Steve Rocco doc and Disposable book once lay, chasms representing the riches of the John Cardiel and Ali Boulala Epicly Laterds, and Gio Reda’s Brian Anderson feature. There still are bits and pieces to be chiseled loose, drawing weekly bands of podcasters to run their fingers across well-worn walls and sift piles of cast-off ore cluttering forgotten crannies.

Do hidden gems still lurk? Yet-untold stories revealing and seminal to know? It is a question of value judged by the many-tentacled beholder’s cursed eyes. Deep, deep within these caverns and shafts, work still is done. In recent years the enchanter MuckMouth, guided by the chaotic-good sages of the Slap boards, set forth on a mission to track down and electronically quiz nearly every half-remembered pro or amateur who contributed footage to company vids or 411s over the past three decades, from Eric Sanderson to Jason King.

The roustabout bard Jenkem, who some believe on a mad quest to put down to parchment each minute that passed during Rocco’s reign in the castle World, this year brought forth from these blasted pits the endearing tale of the World Industries customer service rep, JD, heretofore remembered only in a few thousand novelty trading cards packaged with a magazine printed more than 20 years ago. And last week the leather-armored mercenary HavocTV unveiled a surprisingly engaging 29-minute documentary on Carlos Ruiz, known mainly for backside lipsliding El Toro 10 years ago, around the apex of the hammer era before trucks loosened up, ATVs reignited transition and wallies garnered fresh relevance.

Before the crackling hearth within the Foaming Stein tavern, grizzled warriors deep into their cups will mutter that these mines have been stripped to worthless hulks, that delving into these clean-scraped bowels wastes time and hit points better reserved for still-rising formations charted by Jason Dill, Lev Tanju, Pontus Alv or Alex Olson. But if you find your way to the darkened table in the back, there sits a hooded figure, sometimes spinning a yellowed Nicotine wheel, paying bounties for artifacts he insists still are hidden within this slate and limestone:

The car rental agent who handed over jeep keys to Josh Beagle and Ronnie Creager prior to the filming of ‘Barbarians at the Gate’: Little is known about this rental agent who literally provided the vehicle for what still stands as the best tour video of all time, a document of nudity, crack cocaine abuse and the St. Louis Arch that set an early direction for Heath Kirchart and diminished several farmers’ yields across the U.S. grain belt. Key questions: How did he first get into renting automobiles to people? What were his early encounters with Josh Beagle like? How would he describe the jeep’s condition upon checking it back in? What is life like after renting cars to pro skaters?

The bus driver for Osiris’ ‘Aftermath’ tour: It is widely agreed that anything that ever happened in skateboarding, past or present, occurred on Osiris’ 2001 ‘Aftermath’ tour — and this dude would have been behind the wheel the entire time. Who hooked him up with his first bus? Does he remember where he was when Cliff Burton passed? Which weapons did he use to enforce the legendary ’number one rule of the bus’? Which Osiris pro would he have trusted to take the tiller in the hour of need? If the answer is not T-Bone, why not? Have any subsequent bus driving assignments held a candle to the auspiciously titled ‘Aftermath’ tour?

The investment bankers who managed Big Brother’s $600K sale to Larry Flynt Publications: Jenkem’s highly entertaining 2014 interview with World Industries’ former CFO tugged back the curtain on the financial fence-jumping and knob-cutting that went into World’s sale of Big Brother magazine to the Larry Flynt empire. What other Rocco deals were there? How ugly a mess were Big Brothers’ books? How were valuations calculated for the souls sent in by Big Brother readers responding to an offer for a free World t-shirt in the Andy Roy issue, and did these souls then transfer to the purchaser of World after the $29 million changed hands, or does Rocco retain these in some foot locker within his beachside residence?