Marc manuals past the sunset at Venice Beach
Just before Christmas Barry Walsh, Marc Tison, and myself headed to Los Angeles. I head to LA all the time as you might have notice from my previous posts but this was the first time I’d gone there with either Barry or Marc. This trip was also different in that we were all staying at Joey Tershay’s place, no shitty $40 per night motels on this trip. I was super stoked about the whole idea of the trip. Even though our plane was leaving 30 mins late, surprise, surprise, we were the last people to embark on our plane to Toronto because of a quickie beer for the boys. Once in Toronto we found out that we’d been rescheduled onto a plane the next day because of the late arriving plane. The Air Canada employees were totally surprised when we received our baggage quick enough to make our scheduled plane that same night. After some struggles to change back our flight, our baggage tags, and make it past customs, we were on our correct bird. Once in LA we picked up our rental car and headed, in a round about way, to Joey’s house.
With getting to LA late at night and chilly with Joey until even later, we didn’t wake up early the first morning. That was okay since it was raining when we did wake up. The first thing we noticed once outside was that we were right next to the Hollywood sign. In all my travels to and around LA, I don’t think I was ever that close to the Hollywood sign before. At least not during the day. The rain made us lazy and the first day was a full on do nothing day. Day two greeted us with a little more of the same kind of weather. The second day was even worst in that it drizzled all day long with no breaks. Day three it was not raining when we got up but the weather report stated it was going to rain. It seemed as though the cloud system over our heads was just turning around in circles and not moving eastward as it normally does. A total bummer for us. By this time we were all jonesing to skate. That is why skaters go to LA right?
Left: Diamond Supply Co. is rocking huge billboards all around LA (and a couple other US cities).
Above: Our morning tea station. The root table is so cool. Photo by Barry.
During our time off our skateboards we rolled down to Fairfax Ave. a couple of times. Yes, that is the street where the Diamond Supply Co. store is and yes we were shopping. We also got to go to Supreme, Eric Dressen‘s tattoo parlor, some antique shops, a couple of Good Will type stores, and an Arabic restaurant all within a couple of blocks of each other. The restaurant had some super rad almond lemonade. The shit was off the hook! At Supreme we got to check the wooden sculpture in the store which is a wooden bowl. The bowl was much more mellow then I’d thought from the photos I’d seen before. That first day at Supreme none of us had boards to use and anyways, the store was still open. It must make so much noise at store level when someone is skating the bowl?
The beautiful underside of the Supreme bowl. Internet photo.
After much laughing at Barry, Marc, and I for having been in LA for three days and having not skated, my friend Bill hooked us up Lance’s pool for our first dabble into skating on this trip. We all struggled to skate Lances even though it’s an easy pool to ride. It seemed like we had three day car legs. Ah, there is nothing like feeling like a beginner again. Lance even supplied us with some free flavoured water that he’d never tasted before. To bad it was undrinkable but it was really nice of him to give us something to drink. Bill’s two sons skated so well that day. Tristan is insanely good at skating any transition. He’s always a joy to watch skate even when he rubs it in that he can do a trick first try that takes you 50 tries. Even thought we struggled, you could see on our faces that we were all having a blast. Finally skating and it just happened to be one of the best pools around. Marc ended up hurting his foot, Barry gave himself a raspberry on his wrist, what a way to start the trip.
Yes, Hollywood street actually look like this. Photo by Barry.
This was our rental car, I wish. Photo by Barry.
Basically we ended up skating Lance’s for two hours and then went back to our ballin’ lifestyle in Hollywood. I think the beers even tasted better ballin’ then when I’m normally in LA. That night my friend California (or longer haired) Mike gave me a call. He wanted to skate with us. The next night we met up at Ben Butler’s pool. I’d heard this pool was gnarly and it is. It was a real swimming pool that Ben jack-hammered the shallow end and re-poured the transitions. The pool also had 2″ reveal on the coping so he grinded it down to a “normal” big coping size. Yes, the pool is gnarly! Here, I was the one who went down. I slammed on a carve grind right to the waterfall. Everyone, including me, was stoked I had knee pads on. At Ben’s we skated with California Mike, Ben and some of his friends. Thanks for the hook up Mike.
Look, we were even hanging with Duane at Venice Beach
Throughout the week we met tons of heads, skateboards historical figures. One night we went out for sushi and Steve Olson joined us. If you thought he was “different” in his video interviews (e.g. in Fruit of the vine), he’s way more “different” then that. He was a riot to hang with. We got so many great stories out of him that night. Steve schooled us on CMD. What, you’ve never heard of CMD? CMD is Chronic Me Disease. So many of the old professional skaters have CMD. Maybe it’s contagious? Shit, do I have it? I ended up with full blown cramps from laughing so hard. Another day we met up with fellow ACE pilot Raven Teshy after a random call to Joey. We were amped to skate but it was drizzling, damn. One day rolling up Fairfax Ave. the car next to us honked at us. It was Tuma (pro skater) and Block (photographer who happens to be in Dressen’s Epicly Later’d) trying to get Joey’s attention. While driving up the street Barry flowed Block a copy of Pipe Fiends he was totally surprised and stoked. We all stopped by the Diamond store and shot the shit. Block totally cracked me up. Tuma and Block were super nice guys. From the guys we found out that it was Joey’s birthday that day. What craziness would go down for Joey’s birthday?
I was honoured to be invited to Joey’s birthday party, that was so cool of him to do that. Before going out for the night we went back home and met Joey’s family. We were quickly welcomed and felt like part of the family instantly. We had such a fun time at Joey’s place that I think we got to the birthday party late. So many heads were at the party it was crazy, everywhere I turned there were pro skaters. Skater or non skater, everyone we talked to was super kind. Do I drop some names now….no. Oh yeah, that party was at a Chinese fondu restaurant. I’d never had it before and either had Barry or Marc so we had to be schooled in how to cook the food. Damn, it was so good. After the meal we headed to a bar that Block got us into. ACE pilot Bennet Harada happened to be the DJ; he was also the DJ at Joey’s party spinning reggae of course. We were partying in Santa Monica with pretty ladies, yippy. Thanks Joey for the great night.
Our hosts, Joey Tershay and his lady. Happy Birthday Joey. Photo by Barry.
Before leaving Montreal, Barry had been emailing back and forth with Eric Dressen to get a tattoo from him. Dressen had tried to get Barry squeezed into his schedule but it wasn’t working out. At the twelve hour it happened, Barry was getting his tattoo. While Barry was getting inked, Marc, Joey, and I walked next door with our boards to skate Supreme. We finally got to ride it. On my second drop in my back wheels slid and I went flying backwards over the shallow end, the waterfall, and slammed into the deep end back wall. There were a couple of big name skater skating with us, how embarrassing! Once Barry’s tattoo was finished he came up to watch us and Dressen joined in the session. What a fun session. Mid session I notice that during my embarrassing slam I had popped a couple of veins in both hands. It’s not big deal but looks really bad. My wrist had a big bump that popped out 1 cm like a goose egg on a boxers face. Barry’s new tattoo is epic by the way.
Barry getting so ink by Eric Dressen
We almost forgot to hit Channel Street (AKA San Pedro) before leaving. Luckily when we were trying to figure out what to skate, Steve Olson mentioned that we should all head to Channel Street. I love that place. Not only for the D.I.Y. skatepark but there is one of the best beer selections at a liquor store anywhere there. I can’t believe I almost forgot to pick up some new beers for my beer bottle collection. While driving down we called Ronnie Sandoval and Oscar Navarro to make sure they were there skating. Oh, they were skating there alright. Joined by Robbie Russo, Riley Stevens, and a couple of up and coming rippers. The session was going off! It was maybe the craziest session that I’d even seen live and right in front of me. What a way to end the trip. Yes, we skated Channel Street but not on the same level as these guys. If you ever go there, skate and enjoy yourself even if you’ve got no game there. Don’t compare yourself to the locals, they could skate that place blindfolded but you have no idea where all the bumps are. That place is gnarly as hell.
This amazing trip would have never happened without the help of Mehrathon Trading, ACE trucks, Vans, and Creation Skateboards. A huge thanks goes out to them for this trip with my Montreal homies. Joey Tershay, you’re the best host ever. I can’t wait for the ACE guys to come back to Montreal this summer. Oh yeah, some skate photos, sorry I was busy skating.
Each road trip should have one, a roll-in. Marc testing out the deep end at Lances.
Ass shot of my one trick. Photo by Barry.
Tristan just learned frontside inverts, so sick!