Friday, September 22, 2017

Leo Romero #4.

Thunderbuck Ram.

That's gonna get all sorts of weird search engine hits. It's the song title from Leo's part in Stay Gold. I've been low on words this week.

On the last night of summer, I finally stayed at the skate park until the lights shut off at 10:15 PM. I usually always stay until they turn off, but this year there were issues with the timer. I got into the habit of going a little earlier in the evening and would be done before it went dark. I couldn't land much of anything yesterday, yet I managed to land a half cab heelflip on flat. That trick gives me odd problems. It's there every try, but I don't end up landing it.

Skateboarder - June 2004 Volume 13 Number 10

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Andrew Reynolds #8.

Burning of the Midnight Lamp.

Fun fact about these Emerica ads: A whole bunch of 'em ran upside on the back cover of Skateboarder. I guess it makes them stand out, but the printers must have hated it.

Skateboarder - April 2004 Volume 13 Number 8

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Tosh Townend #2.

Blackboard Jungle Dub.

Skateboarder - March 2004 Volume 13 Number 7

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Matt Allen.


Matt is from Victorville, California. In addition to Emerica, he rode for Foundation and Pharmacy Board Shop. His part in the F-Troop's 2007 video Cataclysmic Abyss is full of big rails and some tech stuff. Matt does a bunch of frontside heelflips, backside 360s, and big spins. In addition to his section, I watched the rest of Cataclysmic Abyss last night, too. That's a fairly solid video as a whole.

I also watched most of the new 917 video yesterday at the end of a slow work day. It was cool to see footage of Alex Olson's tricks from his Transworld interview from a couple of years ago. I'm glad the soundtrack was posted in the comments on YouTube because I would have been racking my brain for days trying to figure that one song was by Duster. I knew I recognized it, but I couldn't place it.

Skateboarder - December 2003 Volume 13 Number 4

Monday, September 18, 2017

Braydon Szafranski.


Braydon is from Las Vegas, Nevada. He was an am for Baker and later turned pro. He was dropped from the team a few years ago and I'm not sure if he has a board sponsor currently. I think he popped up in a Transworld tour article in the last couple of months. Jamie Thomas recently added him to the team of his new footwear company, Straye.

There's been a change of plans. A week of Emerica expanded into two weeks and Listen has been pushed back to October. I got on a roll scanning stuff on Saturday so that's the reason.

Skateboarder - November 2003 Volume 13 Number 3

Friday, September 15, 2017

Keegan Sauder #3.

Crash course in brain surgery.

Keegan is from Vancouver and has been sponsored by Real, Zero, and Blood Wizard. He was also on Vans. The guy zips around transitions and takes on handrails with a laid back style.

Listen or Emerica on Monday. The other will be for the week after next. I'm also thinking about some Philadelphia stuff in the near future.

The photograph is by Jeremiah Doubt.

Skateboarder - September 2005 Volume 15 Number 1

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Rick McCrank #5.

We make things roll nice.

Momentum is a Canadian based wheel company that has been around since the 1998. Artist Andrew Pommier does a lot of the graphics. The team currently includes Rick McCrank, Magnus Hanson, Nate Lacoste, Steven Burke, and more. Brandon Biebel, Danny Way, Jose Rojo, Corey Sheppard, and several others have ridden for them over the years.

Shout out to WKND for adding Alexis Sablone to the team. I know this was announced a couple weeks ago, but I'm running behind at life.

RIP Grant Hart.

Jeremiah Doubt took the photo.

Skateboarder - May 2006 Volume 15 Number 9

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Chris Haslam #2.

Fear the beard.

The photo is by Seu Trinh.

Skateboarder - April 2007 Volume 16 Number 8

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Stacy Lowery #4.

"The voices call out from the dark."

That's what it says on the tag of the Program t-shirt I have. Stacy and Mike are keeping the good times rolling with the Program. The company follows in the same direction as Bueno and Roger.

Skateboarder - May 2006 Volume 15 Number 9

Monday, September 11, 2017

Mark Gutterman.

No bueno.

I tried. I only found two ads for Bueno. They were getting distributed by Element so I thought they had a couple more ads, but I couldn't find 'em. And it wasn't for a lack of looking on a rainy Friday night either. I assume this means I will find them in next month or two.

Bueno was Stacy Lowery and Michael Sieben's company from 2005 to 2007. The idea was to bring some much needed humor back into skateboarding. The team included Shiloh Greathouse, Jeremy Holmes, Nate LaCoste, and Nate Broussard. Later they would start Roger and eventually the Program.

The remaining three fifths of the week will be used for Momentum Wheels. Their ads are kind of similar and were much easier to find.

The Skateboard Mag - May 2006 Issue 26

Friday, September 8, 2017

California Cheap Skates Summer 2010.

What a difference sixteen years makes.

In the time since the early 1990s, CCS catalogs ballooned in size from around thirty pages all the way up to ninety pages. You sure got a lot more clothing and shoe options as the industry had grown substantially. The internet was starting to render print catalogs a moot point, but they were trying really hard.

I'm usually never one to say a given era of skateboarding was better than another and I avoid the trap that nostalgia can be. Each time period has its pluses and minuses. 1994 was not wholly better or worse than 2010 for example. They were just different. That being said, all I can say is "YIKES!" about a whole lot of the board graphics in this catalog.

The truck choices expanded with lots more colors and even signature model trucks with custom colorways. It looks like a lot of people were riding thinner boards in 2010 because trucks come mostly in two sizes: 7.75" or 8". I didn't recall boards still being smaller back then.

In terms of wheels, sizes had evened out in the low to mid 50s. Spitfire, Bones, and Ricta were dominating the selection. The plastic core trend was still there, which never made sense to me. I was riding whatever Spitfires that were 56 mm and white. Or basically the same type of wheels I've been using for the last fifteen years or so. It's odd to consider how much rapidly skateboarding changed over a few years in the early 1990s versus how I've been riding the same shape boards from the same company for three years now. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

There will be something for next week. I don't really know what yet. Maybe Bueno.

The Brian Anderson photo credited to a CMRO. No idea who that is. The Muska?

Thursday, September 7, 2017

California Cheap Skates Summer 1994.

Hardcore in '94.

The savvy skateboard consumer had a whole lot more choices for boards as the 1990s moved along. Birdhouse, Alien Workshop, Real, Stereo, Mad Circle, Foundation, Acme, and more were all doing well. It's interesting that this catalog would have been printed before Chocolate was available, as Girl was well represented. Slick decks were still kicking around. I don't think I had any of the boards in here because I was firmly committed to Consolidated when I was in college. The graphics for the most part are looking fairly sharp and often reflect the rider's image or personal tastes. Keep that thought in mind for tomorrow.

The truck selection had slimmed down and your only color choice was silver. I was riding Ventures and Indy at this point.

Wheels were hovering in the low to mid 40 mm range. A few brave brands started to drift to the upper 40s and even over the 50 mm mark. Santa Cruz was holding down the wheel biz with Direction, Speed Wheels, and SMA. Union, A-1 Meats, New School, and Acme were all fighting for your dollar bills. I think I was riding Consolidated wheels at this time. I'm surprised there aren't many offerings from Spitfire.

The Drake Jones cover photo is by Tommy Guerrero.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

California Cheap Skates Summer 1992.

Twenty five year high school anniversary.

Skateboarding was getting lean and mean in 1992. Powell and Santa Cruz were still going fairly strong, but a lot of the other big dogs had fallen off. Upstarts such as Real, Black Label, Acme, Milk, Alien Workshop, and Small Room were gaining a lot of ground. Slicks were popular. I like how Santa Cruz and SMA had the same graphic on the bottom with different art on the top. The top graphics for the SMA decks are great. The Real costume series of slicks hit the market and Acme was making racing car inspired board art. Two of my favorite boards ever are in this catalog, the Neil Blender speakers deck and the Salman Agah camel stripes board. I also really like the extra minimal Andrew Morrison from the New Deal.

In terms of trucks, there is a decent variety, although a few of the brands shown were on the verge of extinction. Deadbolt and Gullwing were keeping plastic baseplates alive. Tracker, Indy, Thunder, and Venture were well represented. The new San Diego Trucking earned a big rectangle in the catalog, too.

The wheel choices have slimmed down in both size and number of companies from 1991. Santa Cruz still had the most choices. Acme, Deluxe, and Toxic were providing more options to put over your bearings. I dig how the Spitfire Buffered Tablets look. I was riding some Spitfires and Acme Formula One wheels around this time.

My class didn't have a reunion this year. I was a little surprised since our twenty year was a fun time. My friend from the next town over said his class didn't have a reunion either. They had tried to get one organized, but it never panned out. I don't think my school even bothered. I supposed we're finally living up to being a bunch of slackers.

Note: That's a Chet Thomas deck without the caption on page five. I'm keeping the interest in the Public going.

The Gershon Mosley cover photo was provided by Santa Cruz.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

California Cheap Skates Summer 1991.

What happens when Hollywood has a successful movie?

They make a sequel.

Following that logic, Vert Is Dead is doing another week of board porn from CCS. I'm even throwing in some trucks and wheels to spice it up a little.

A reader sent in a request for a few specific catalogs and I had some of them so that's how this batch of scans came together. I'm ending the week with a catalog from 2010 for comparison purposes.

First up is the Summer 1991 catalog. Most of the heavy hitters of the industry are still going strong. Powell Peralta, H-Street, Santa Cruz, G & S, Vision, and Zorlac have plenty of decks for you to pick from. Newer companies like New Deal, Black Label, Small Room, and World Industries give the consumer some different choices. Decks of note would include the Ross Goodman Gravedigger, the Nicky Guerrero mask, the Jim Thiebaud hanging Klansman, and the SMA decks.

The wheel selection is dominated by Powell and Santa Cruz. I like the early Spitfire Classics and the New Deal Nude Eels. I had a set of the Powell Street Style wheels in green. I think I also had the A-1 Meats Kings because those were the wheels Matt Hensley rode. I might have had the Sex Cells, too. And for the folks who wind up on this site looking for Toxic Wheels, their Poison, Shock, and Acid Rain rollers will make you happy.

The cover photo is listed as John Lloyd by Xeno. That happens to be Xeno's real name. Photo magic or a typo?

Friday, September 1, 2017

Javier Mendizabal #5.

Griptape art.

Javier is from the Basque Country in northern Spain. He started skateboarding in 1989 and was one of the first riders on Cliché when Jeremie Daclin started the company up in 1997. He would later turn pro for them and stayed with Cliché until they called it a day in 2016. Javier has also been sponsored by Gravis, Quicksilver, and Converse. His part in Strongest of the Strange is one of my favorites. He's got some supreme transition skills.

RIP Preston "P-Stone" Maigetter. Beer Helmet is a seriously great video.

Vert Is Dead will be back on Tuesday, September 5th with a week of CCS catalogs. Have a good weekend.

The Skateboard Mag - January 2011 Issue 82

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Tyler Bledsoe #2.

You have all the time in the world.

I watched Tyler's part from Mind Field yesterday. I never really appreciated what he does until that All Clear OK web clip came out last winter. He's got a good balance for his tech tricks where they are very difficult yet refined so he's not overdoing it with ledge dancing. Tyler also took on some huge gaps back in 2009.

The Skateboard Mag - June 2011 Issue 87

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Bryan Herman #3.

Top of the Hill.

Bryan put together a part full of technical street skating in school yards plus hardflips down big gaps for Emerica's Stay Gold video from 2010. The part also featured an odd musical combo of Tom Waits and Black Sabbath. He opened it up with a kickflip to forever and then some nose manual down Hollywood Boulevard.

The Skateboard Mag - March 2011 Issue 84

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Al Partanen #6.

"I'm not actually one to drop loot on a power shirt. They come to me when they're meant to be."

Sage wisdom from Parts regarding adding fancy t-shirts and/or flair into your life.

For the quote: Thrasher - June 2017 Volume 38 Number 6

The Skateboard Mag - July 2011 Issue 88

Monday, August 28, 2017

Mike Carroll #19.

Riding on the wall.

Mike crail grabs a wallride where the Crail Couch normally goes.

The Skateboard Mag - March 2011 Issue 84

Friday, August 25, 2017

Ben Raemers #2.

It's a funny Friday.

This guy had a cool part in Oververt.

The Skateboard Mag - April 2011 Issue 85

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Alex Olson #4.

"Chris Roberts made me a mixtape on VHS for my 16th birthday with all the old World Industries videos and Video Days. At the time everybody said Video Days was the best video, but you couldn't find it anywhere unless someone had a copy - which was kind of cool, too. But I saw that when I was 16 and Jason Lee and Mark Gonzales obviously marked me."

By my rough math, Alex would have turned 16 in 2003 so there was no YouTube to look stuff up on. The youth these days have it so easy, which I suppose has plenty of benefits.

I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around how you can slappy into a feeble grind on a curb, let alone on a banister.

The Jenkem piece on nostalgia in skateboarding was an interesting read.

For the quote: Transworld - May 2015 Volume 33 Number 5

The Skateboard Mag - October 2011 Issue 91

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Riley Hawk #2.

"If anything, I was excited for Riley to be recognized on a scale that was beyond nepotism. Obviously, he's super good and deserved to be on Birdhouse for his skills. The idea that he was just living in my shadow didn't sit well with either of us. I was just trying to keep him going until something happened, like, how Andrew Reynolds ended up recognizing him." - Tony Hawk

I like how Tony skates in his son's pro model shoe.

The photo is by Joe Hammeke.

For the quote: Thrasher - September 2017 Volume 38 Number 9

The Skateboard Mag - June 2011 Issue 87

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Anthony Pappalardo #6.

Don't Bother Me.

Anthony put out a part in Lakai's Fully Flared video from 2007 that featured a lot of raw New York City skating on somewhat rougher spots. There were many ollies and nollies into banks, 50-50 transfers, and cellar doors. It was a little different from the more technical stuff and lacked the ledge dancing that filled the Flare. I can't recall what the internet thought of it at that moment, but the peanut gallery might not have dug the section. Now that a decade has passed and we've had time to digest everything, I think his part holds up fairly well and is indicative of where skateboarding is at these days. His trick selection would fit in nicely with a modern day video like Spirit Quest or Solsticij.

I swear Boil The Ocean wrote something about Pops recently, but much better.

The Skateboard Mag - January 2011 Issue 82

Monday, August 21, 2017

Zered Bassett #2.

Night Court.

The Zoo York fine print that was lost in the margin:

Doctor Z tipping the scales of justice. Straight making history. The defendant is charged with slaughtering the infamous NYC courthouse ledge. Verdict guilty as charged.

Sometimes it feels like Zered doesn't get the full credit he deserves. He demolishes everything.

The Skateboard Mag - October 2011 Issue 91

Friday, August 18, 2017

Heath Kirchart #10.


It's Heath. What else do you need to say?

It was raining cats and dogs last night so I felt fine with a day off from skateboarding. If it had been dry, I would have felt bad about watching a dreadful pre-season football game.

Congrats to enjoi on winning King of the Road.

Up next is two weeks of random stuff from 2011. I went with the suggestion of picking out things I liked over developing any sort of theme.

Skateboarder - January 2007 Volume 16 Number 5

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Brian Anderson #7.

Enjoy the silence.

This trick was in BA's shared part with Gino Iannuci in Nike's Nothing But The Truth video from 2007. I really like the part from Reese Forbes in that flick.

Chops has a cool list of top five video parts over at Quartersnacks.

The first day of skating in new shoes went well last night. I knew my old kicks were getting bad, but I didn't realize how bad. It's so good to have grip again on ollies.

Slap - December 2007 Volume 16 Number 12

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Charlie Thomas.

Give Blood.

Crimson was Kris Markovich's company after he left Blind in the mid 2000s. It did not last too long and Kris soon started the Given. The graphics featured a lot of his own art. The team included Richie Belton, James Atkin, Danny Scher, Anthony "Ragdoll" Scalamare, and a few others.

Charlie is from Louisiana. He has ridden for H-Street, G & S, Scarecrow, Hollywood, and Crimson. Charlie also served as a team manager for several companies over the years. Currently he is involved with Preservation Skateboards out of New Orleans.

I threw out the pair of shoes I had been skating in for the last four months when I got home last night. They smelled really bad. The left sole was down to the insole by the toes and the duct tape wasn't sticking. The heels were worn out, but that was more from daily wear for the few months I wore them to break in. Did I mention they smelled really bad?

Skateboarder - October 2007 Volume 17 Number 2

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Darren Navarrette #9.

The Vertical Vampire goes horizontal across the channel at Kelly Belmar's backyard bowl.

Wasn't there a 411 spot check on this pit and Chicken's pool?

Congrats to Nora Vasconcellos on turning pro for Welcome.

A reader emailed about CCS catalogs so I'm going to do another week of those after Labor Day. It will be three from the early 1990s and then one from later on for comparison purposes.

Slap - November 2007 Volume 16 Number 11