Well, the call came down that MRZ and BLK were not going to be able to attend this year’s Trifecta deal. I figured I would take one for the team and head down to cover it to the best of my abilities. I learned a couple of things trying to cover this damn contest though. One is that there are a whole bunch of guys with cameras that are gonna jockey for prime deck position regardless of where said photos actually end up. I totally understand the whole Am$umer thing now, and I feel for any dudes who are trying to make a living by getting coverage of these events. Now don’t get me wrong, I pretty much fit the Am$umer profile myself, but shit man, there’s nothing more frustrating than getting a shot ruined by some dude with a fisheye sticking his shit in front of yours. Allow me to illustrate my point:
Bummed. Anyway, the end result of lesson number one was my splitting from the contests at various times to go skate some prime Oregon concrete. There are spots where my coverage is, shall we say, lacking. Trifecta lesson number two was look out for Red when he’s skating. That dude skates like an angry Silverback Gorilla on crack. But more on that later.
Day one was Lincoln City, the grand old lady of the Dreamland skatepark era. I got off of work and powered on down there on Thursday night to hook up with friends and get a nice floor to sleep on. Red was hosting a party at his compound, which houses a bowl of monstrous proportions. I am told that it’s something like 11 feet in the shallow and 14 feet in the deep. Apparently some kid did a 540 in it. I wish I didn’t get stuck in construction traffic, but I did and was too late for that party. Fortunately, we managed to find ourselves some trouble anyway and ended up at a bar with the Burgers (of Burger bowl fame) where some chick got wasted and fell off of her stool and onto her head. Shredding and drunken antics, that pretty much set the tone for the rest of the Trifecta.
Here’s some photos from day one:
One skater stood out above the rest, and that was Annie Sullivan. She had a deep bag of tricks that she unleashed in the deep, and ended up taking home first at Lincoln City. Oh yeah, I think she broke her arm too. Here’s the only pic I got of her, a RNR slider in the deep:
See if you can spot the world’s worst swellbow in that pic. So that’s it for the ladies, next up was the masters division. Here’s some shots of the old dudes.
There is no better way to do a rock and roll, period. DP killed it, but bowed out due to knee trouble or something.
By the way, the quote at the beginning of this mess of an article comes from Buck’s story about an encounter between an Asian mini mart owner and a vagrant that really wanted his soup. You can fill in the blanks however you like, there’s no way I could tell the story as funny as Buck did.
So Charno ended up winning the Masters, with Buck in second and someone else in third. Next up was the open qualifiers with locals and the up and comers all battling for a chance to skate against the top pros.
Mumma is one of those kids that has his shit dialed. He skates hard, keeps his mouth shut, and puts up with our heckling. We were threatening to shave off half of his mustache, but decided to let him off the hook. FSA done right.
Now it was right around this time that I got what I am now calling my “Oregon Baptism.” Mark “Red” Scott was warming up with the rest of the skaters, except he was using the entire park. I mean he was skating at Mach 3 through areas fully occupied by lurkers, photographers, and other flotsam. It was really something to behold actually, watching the guy who built the park skate it the way he designed it to be skated. I thought I was in a safe place, pretty much in the spot that I was when I took that photo of Raven. There I was, focused on getting the super cool skateshot, not aware that death was about to rain from above in the form of Red on a skateboard. That dude landed directly on my head and we both went sliding down into the park. I shook off the cobwebs, checked the status of my camera, and staggered off to recover.
Since I didn’t really know what happened in the first place, I went to offer Red an apology and to get his take on it. It pretty much went as follows:
Me :”Hey Red, sorry about that. Was I in your way or something?”
Him: “Oh I was trying to avoid a couple of other guys and I landed on you”
Me :”Oh, Okay”
Him: “Dude, your head hit me in the nuts…”
I pretty much didn’t know how to respond to that one, so I just sort of wandered off. Thinking about it now, I realize that I basically got teabagged by Red. I don’t know how to feel about that. Still, I think Billy got it worse when Red blasted him into the shallow bowl while trying to basically transfer through him. Alright, back to the shots.
So I think that for sheer action, the open pro qualifiers were where it was at. Here’s a couple more shots.
By this point, I had been crawling around on the deck for more than a couple of hours. I was getting a little antsy and needed to skate off the Hamms. I stood up, turned around, and saw this:
What did you expect me to do? I packed that shit up and skated for a bit. Actually, I think I might have spent more time at the trunk of Lyle and Becky’s bar, er, car but who can tell? Either way, I spent the last couple of hours of prime lighting not covering the contest. When I settled back into picture mode, it was getting a little dark in the deep. I use this story to illustrate the fact that I got not a single decent shot of any of the top pro dudes. Oh well, you can probably find those elsewhere.
After this, I basically gave up for the day and became a full spectator. That’s okay though, because I got to witness some incredible skating. More on that later, I have to poop and go to work.
We ended up in Portland around midnight on Friday, just in time to get a few drinks in us down at the local skater bar, the Sandy Hut. If you wanna know where the Sandy Hut is, just hit Burnside and follow your nose. First you smell bread, then 7UP, then you look right and there you are.
I had been drinking cheap beer pretty steadily all day, and I hit that point where you feel like you have come back around to sober. I started bragging to Doughnuts that I didn’t feel drunk at all and started chugging the Jack on the rocks that was in my hand, and ordered a couple more to wash that down. That may have been a mistake. I didn’t feel so good on Saturday morning. Regardless, I managed to make it through breakfast without puking at the Doug Fir (motto: Eat Fir) and we piled in and got Buck down to Pier Park so he could show everyone how to skate.
Pier Park is not made for pussies. The big pipe deal is something like 9.5′ on the shallower side and 11.5′ in the deep. I am guessing that the pipe is somewhere in the 22 foot range, but I am sure some nerd will come on here to correct me if I am wrong. Here’s a shot that will give you some perspective.
See that bowl to the right there? That’s bowl’s the reason I have absolutely zero coverage of the ladies action. I am sorry. You can check out Santa Ana Dave’s post for some shots of the victor, young Julie Kindstrand. I can tell you that she is pretty much on the rampage, so I am sure that this will not be the last time that you see her winning contests. So anyway, on to the masters, since that’s the only thing I ended up covering on Saturday.
This Steve Grover guy, he’s a trip. He came decked out in a Sleestak wife beater and green coveralls with a Cold War Skateboards logo on it. I guess when you can ollie like this, you can rock whatever gear you want. That’s like the Corey Duffel rule for old vert dudes.
That’s it for the shots, because I got sick of sweating my ass off on the deck and went to skate Battleground for the rest of the day. By the way, that’s the best decision I made all weekend. That park is one of the best new parks around. But more on that in a minute. I wanna talk about Salba first.
Salba was a man on a singular mission this weekend. He was up here to go over that doorway in the full pipe at Pier. I know this because I asked him to go skate the bowl with me at Lincoln City, and he said that he couldn’t because he was leaving to check out the pipe. When I told him that I was thinking about giving that thing a shot myself, he replied “Dude. Let’s go right now.” It was said with the tone of a man that is determined to get shit done. I stayed behind to get more silly pictures, because I am so dedicated to my craft. Actually, I was just scared.
So by now you know the rest of the story, dude makes it over in like 5 tries. That’s the kind of shit that separates these guys from the rest of us normal skaters, and I wanted to take a sec to give him props.
So like I said, we bagged the contest, hopped in the car and headed to Battleground to skate for a bit, so I missed the pros and everything. If you want a good idea of what went down, just find Dan Hughes’ video on You Tube. It pretty much sums it all up.
I can only watch people skate for so long before I get the itch to join in. Pier Park had it’s diversions for sure, but we had to go skate somewhere that was not overrun by rippers. The decision was made, and we were off to Battleground to sample the goods. We were about to find out that Battleground was just as crowded, just swap the pros for smart ass kids on bikes.
Usually all we gotta to is throw Ike and Billy in the bowl, and the kiddies stay away. Ike is a madman, and Billy is a large mammal. You don’t wanna run into either of them. Well there was one kid who wasn’t having it, he rolled right in on his Huffy in the middle of one of Billy’s runs, nearly killing himself and Doughnuts. When he popped out I went over to offer him some advice in the form of skatepark etiquette. I basically told him that unless he wanted to die, he should think twice about rolling in on someone who is flying around and is twice his size.
The kid responded with typical cluelessness: “But he wasn’t even in that part of the bowl!” That seemed to be all I needed to turn into a snapcase on the brat. The conversation quickly headed south.
“Are you psychic? Do you know where he is going to be?”
“He wasn’t even skating right there!”
“Shut up! Do you understand what I am saying to you?”
“You can’t tell me what to do!”
“Okay fine, when you wake up in the hospital one day, think about this conversation.”
“You’re not my dad.”
“You know what? You’re right, I am not your dad. Because if I was, I would bend you over my knee and spank you like the little bitch that you are!”
It was then that his older ginger friend decided to throw in his two cents. Remember that movie “A Christmas Story”? Remember the bully, Scott Farkus? That’s exactly what this kid looked like. These little turds have the gall to think that they know exactly how the world works and…
You know what? That’s exactly how I felt at their age. The only difference is that if I rolled in on some older dude, he would have kicked my little ass. I think that’s what’s missing nowadays, somebody needs to give these little brats a good whippin. It won’t change the way they think, but they will keep their mouths shut out of fear. Alright, back to the skateboarding.
Battleground has it all, a sick flow area with a squashed cradle, an awesome bowl with pool coping, and a great street area. This is the kind of park every city should ask for. Except for the mulch that lines the park, it’s pretty much ideal. Here’s the cradle thingy:
Fun, fun stuff. We skated here until we couldn’t skate anymore, ate some grub and went back into Portland to party. There was some art show where Ngoho and Olson had some stuff, so we wen’t to check it out. It was on the roof of some industrial building, but when we got there, there was no beer and about 50 eleventeen year olds milling about. Not my idea of a good time. We decided to make a break for it and head up to the Sandy Hut for video bowling and liquor. Apparently the party got better when we left, because when we got back to the Jupiter at about three, everyone had just gotten back from that rooftop deal.
Highlights of Saturday’s debauchery included a stolen homeless dudes’ sign which read “Help me 2b and alcoholic” It had a bonus folding flap which read “or pot head” and another bonus flap which read “choose 1”. Ben Schroeder was looking to body slam pretty much anyone, but happily refrained from doing so. For those that don’t know, Ben’s about 6’6″ and unpredictable. There was a moment when I actually feared for my safety, but I think he sized me up and realized he would kill me if he landed on me, so I was spared. Thanks for not killing me, Ben. Hell, even Rune stopped by for a minute to drink beer and talk shit. Rune’s a good dude, mellow and humble is the impression I got.
At about 4 I managed to shut the door and turn the lights out. I am sure the party went on until the sun came up. It occurred to me that a lot of these dudes on the world cup circuit actually do this all the time. How they manage to party like that and skate as hard as they do baffles the shit out me. And Dave Duncan is a certified rockstar as far as I am concerned. His lifestyle would kill lesser men. I am glad I got to play for a weekend, but that’s about all I could take.
I somehow managed to escape a hangover, and we headed off to check out the contest under threatening skies. One thing about the Northwest that I have learned is that if it looks like rain, it’s gonna rain. No teaser clouds like in So Cal. Sure enough, it pretty much rained out the contest. But not before some shredding went down.
The bowl got sessioned just as hard as the flow part, here’s some shots.
By the way, I think Julie K. won again, so congrats to her on a solid weekend.
On to the masters. Sunday was Buck’s day, hands down. He was on fire, doing runs with back to back tricks that lasted for about a minute. Fuck yeah, Buck.
Check out the local farmers watching skateboarding go down. I love that. As a matter of fact, there were a lot of townsfolk who came down and posted up the lawn chairs. It’s good to see a community that supports skateboarding like that.
After the masters finished up the weather worsened. The locals and pros started to get going, but the rain kind of shut things down. By this time, all I needed was half an excuse to pack it in for the weekend, so I decided to head home. I figured that if it did dry up, someone else could report on what happened. I did manage to get one parting shot:
So that’s it. I would like to say thanks to Roger and Billy at Skateboarder, Lyle and Becky, Red, Duncan, and everyone else who made this more than just a contest. See you next year.