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Monday, April 07, 2008

And Now For Something Completely Different*

A gratuitous plug for my friends over at:

  • jackassworld

  • My association with jackass goes back to when I was a teenager and used to ride BMX bikes and skateboard with jackass creator/director Jeff Tremaine.

    We'd ride around in his station wagon that was plastered with Meatland bumper stickers ("The Meat That Can't Be Beat") going to jumps/skate spots drinking Dr. Pepper's and eating Slim Jims. We'd steal plywood in the light of day from newly-birthed subdivisions and spray paint the walls of the local high schools with Black Flag logos. We'd go to matinee punk shows at the old 9:30 Club.

    Basically your typical '80s kids with Thrasher subscriptions and weekly trips to the local surf shop to ogle the cute girls who worked there.

    Early on it was apparent that Jeff had a fucked up sense of humor as I was one of the first to be subjected to it. Jeff used to blame his stinky ass farts on his dog until one day his dog passed away and the farts still came. He tried to convince me, Joey and Andy that the band on the back of the Dead Kennedys record - the record where the back cover has a '50s band with Danelectro guitars - was indeed the Dead Kennedys. He talked me into going to the beach guaranteeing us a place to stay only to wind up sleeping in his wagon. That same trip he convinced me how cool it would be to pierce my ear and wear a fish lure in it like Darby Crash. Man, that shit fucking hurt.

    He also forced me to watch Heavy Metal and Monty Python's Holy Grail*.

    College came.

    Jeff went to St. Louis and joined a fraternity while I went to Baltimore and started to play rugby.

    We stayed in touch and eventually both of us would end up living in Los Angeles. At the time he worked at a BMX magazine that I would end up writing music reviews for and so began a music journalism career I've had for over 15 years now but that's a whole nother story.

    Eventually Jeff ended up as the creative director for Big Brother skateboard magazine and me - after bouncing around through various Hollywood jobs (Restless Records, writing radio promos for Baywatch, being a proofreader at DIRT), I found myself working as the pool boy at the Beverly Hills Hilton.

    For real.

    It was a brainless day job that allowed me to write for magazines like Transworld Skateboarding, Warp, Blunt, Bikini and Big Brother.

    I wrote some great articles for Big Brother: the malt liquor review, buying drugs at the parking lot of a Dead show, how to bet on horse racing and a beastiality porn review to name a few. Ah, good times.

    Things get all James Frey'ed fuzzy somewhere around the mid-'90s.

    I was living in Los Feliz which turned out to house a hot skate spot and found myself shooting footage of people like Paulo Diaz (clip below which isn't mine by the way), hanging out with photographer Rick Kosik in some sketchy areas all in the name of skateboard photography or trying to convince Jeff and Marc McKee to not call the cops during the infamous Bong Olympics.

    I moved to North Carolina and got married while Jeff continued to ply his warped sensibilities on the world mixing Howard Stern, Monty Python and a few reads of Terry Southern's Magic Christian into the brand we know it as today: jackass.

    jackass took over television and the big screen and now they are setting their sights on the internet (i.e. new media).

    Be afraid.

    Be very afraid.