Posts Tagged ‘Utah’

Funnel Cloud

April 23, 2011

Got the warm fuzzys seeing Raymond Molinar pop up in the Trapasso-facepaint Skateboard Mag the other day, partly because I’ve been worried about him fading out ever since his departure off Habitat, partly cuz there’s a little bit of Henry Sanchez-style spazz crustiness to his take on technical ledge tricks that’s pleasing to the eye. My initial recollections date back to some tricks in a TWS vid montage, possibly “Free Your Mind,” which would’ve been an all-time classic with another part and 1/3 as many skits — he did lines in those Vans with the giant V on the side, reminiscent of some Vision Street Wears, and even back then he had the switch kickflip backside tailslides. This entry in Popwar’s short-lived “Video Hype” DVD teaser series I thought of as his official/proper debut and it’s also worth revisiting as some Utahn has revived the brand-name, a strategy that could deliver profit and pleasure to all involved, and maybe even a lucky few who are not.

Lizard King Is Probably the T-Pain of Skateboarding

May 12, 2009


Not Lizard King or T-Pain, or even Billy Gibbons

Back in 2001, when men were men, pro deck sales were still on the upswing and PJ Ladd was wrapping up a game-altering East Coast shop video part, plucky softgoods concern Planet Earth released the largely overlooked “F.O.R.E. and Friends,” a city-hopping video that brought together the likes of Kenny Anderson, Felix and a young Terry Kennedy* to celebrate the rising star of Forrest Kirby, who at the time occupied a place in skateboarding where he basically was like everybody’s lovable little brother. Whether donning a doo-rag or skidding banger noseblunts, FORE was down with everybody and stood poised to take his place amongst top-ranked professional athletes everywhere, before stepping back to attend CCD and pen faith-based memoirs.

As you can imagine we live in less innocent times nowadays. International jewel thieves still are at large; 50 Cent is having problems selling CDs of his music and snitches roam the streets. Yet some things are not so different. Dustin Dollin remains a glorious mess for instance. Varial kickflips are still better left alone unless you are Brian Anderson. Whereas we once had Nate Dogg, we now obey the robot voice of Tallahassee Pain, and while skateboarding once ruffled the hair of a towheaded kid from San Antonio, in 2009 everyone wants to be down with the Satan worshippin’, razorblade abusin’, crazy-eyed rail/gap/other killa Mike Plumb.

And just as T-Pain took the stage at the Grammy awards and beseeched award-winning artists everywhere to hit him on the hip for collaborative art pursuits, Lizard King seems eager to get down with anyone and everyone possible — his journey from a one-foot backside lipsliding amateur contest oddity sponsored by Think has brought him into the house of Reynolds, and more recently he’s spreading the endorsement love amongst entities including but not limited to Jake Brown and Sean Sheffey’s not-sure-if-it’s-real-or-not clothing venture “Laced” and, ah, DC Shoes? Lizard King’s three-ring circus is such that you are never certain what to believe, what is true and what is just bleary-eyed delusion.

Other traits shared with T-Pain: a boisterous nickname, a penchant for outlandish behavior that might be really annoying in other people, and they’re both friends with people who have tattoos on their face.

A healthy work ethic and the big-tent approach has worked for T-Pain, just as it has served Lizard King well. And despite the media ubiquity of both it’s hard not to cheer for them. They are too tirelessly and exuberantly weird to root against, neither seems to take himself too serious, and for the most part it wouldn’t do any good anyway. In closing, if Mike Plumb contributes an autotune hook to a JR rap song you all owe this web blog $1000.

*who had yet to learn bluntslides from Stevie Williams