Portland Oregon-Based Digital Media

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If you missed Chapter 1 read this first. 

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Aaron’s second time skateboarding, ever.
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November 11, 2017. 8 AM PST.

After our one-run debacle the day before, Aaron and I were on team “let’s go get breakfast, hit the skatepark again and then see some pretty shit instead of snowboard today.” We figured Fancy, Keith and Madison would create better snowboard content anyway, so we loaded up the Highlander once again and hit Mammoth Lakes just in time for The Goodlife Cafe to open. Our server – who I’d guess just switched from summer construction mode to waiting tables mode, worked with a quickness that ensured at least one of us got the wrong thing. (It was me – my Florentine Benedict came out covered covered in ham) but Aaron’s number 2 (a scramble with lots of stuff) was able to tide me over as we waited the 10 minutes for kitchen to whip me up a new one. When we left, the line was starting to stretch out the door and we patted ourselves on the back for the speed at which we were accomplishing things on a Saturday morning in a sleepy ski town experiencing its first Los Angeles influx of the season.

Next stop was the skatepark – on our previous trip the wind was whipping and my phone was dead, so I was excited to take some photos of other people rather than skating myself. Aaron and I wagered the over/under on how many people would be at the skatepark. He said less than two, I said more, and the loser had to buy lunch. I hesitated at the last minute and didn’t take the bet – but I should have! The park was poppin’ with a multi-generational vibe. Skate dads and their daughters who were ridiculously good, out-of-breath rippers from the beach of Orange county, and of course some scooter kids who were probably trying impressive tricks, if you’re into that sort of thing.
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I was logging clips of kids who ripped, while Aaron was talking to Kyle, who’s daughter very well could be the next big thing in skateboarding, about getting back into skateboarding as an old guy. The hype was real and Aaron asked me to go grab my deck so he could try to skate the park.

“Letting” someone I love skateboard is a real mental struggle for me. I’ve experienced the pain of learning (read: broken bones, bruises, scrapes, not being able to walk for a month, much less snowboard) and it’s hard to want that for another person. But Aaron is a grown-ass man, and even though I knew my loose trucks and skinny little girl board would not be the right set-up for him to cruise this park, I said, “fine, go get that shit yourself.”
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The park was poppin’
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Aaron’s goals for skateboarding were far less ambitious than mine, and after circling the sidewalk around the park a couple times, he was stoked. We bid a fond farewell to all our new skatepark friends and pointed the car North to Yosemite.
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We saw scenery!
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We drove for about an hour North of Mammoth, passing high desert on the right and majestic-ass mountain ranges on the left before hitting the pull off in the “gateway town” of Lee Vining. It’s about 18 miles up to the gate of Yosemite, which seems like a scenic drive until you actually get into Yosemite and see what good scenery really looks like. And since it’s the off season – but snow hadn’t started to fall yet – the pass was open and fee station was closed. Basically, the perfect recipe for enjoying this natural wonder with minimal other humans and no additional expenses.
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Doing the actual loop, or hiking to Half Dome, or any other those things you should really do when visiting Yosemite would take six hours of driving alone. Considering it was about 1 pm by the time we made it there, and we had plans to reconvene with our crew for the ultimate snowboard party in Reno at 6, that wasn’t happening. But we did manage to freak out some Asian tourists by attempting to skateboard on some big flat rocks, and shoot pseudo-senior portraits alongside a bible-study group, as well as bond with a couple old hippies over how fucking amazing this place really was. It was there we decided to turn back – Aaron’s altitude-enhanced cold and bad back didn’t need to log any more cartime at 10,000 feet, so we agreed we’d seen enough.

Back on 395, we got up to cruising speed, and agreed to make it out of the mountains before stopping at some epic side of the road restaurant to refil our bellies. The town of Walker came into view, with a roadside BBQ place on the left side and a roach-motel that said “Bikers Welcome” – complete with lots of moto-themed decorations – on the other. It was clear we’d found our human-filling station. And just when it seemed like it couldn’t get any more perfect – we were legitimately-surprised by Kieth opening the door for us. The crew had not only beat us there – but they’d already researched the menu and the scene for us. It was LITERALLY the last day Mountain View BBQ would be open for the season – and although they were out of mac and cheese, you could get a variety of slow-cooked meats on top of any type of potatoes you wanted. Aaron opted for with a BBQ Beef sandwich with fries, while I went with the Texas Spud – a massive baked potato drowned in BBQ pork, cheese, sour cream and chives. They were both amazing and thankfully Aaron was there to clean both our plates.
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Four hours later we arrived in Reno. Hungry, tired, cranky and ready to kill each other once again. Our plan was to attend the snowboard-social-event of the season and enjoy some drinks and good company before retiring to our pre-honeymoon suite at a TBD hotel. However, before we could go out in public – Aaron wanted to stop back by the Outlet mall and get a clean shirt or two. As I don’t particularly care for shopping when I need something, and HATE IT when I don’t, I opted to sit in the car and work on my Insta story while he got what he needed. I did a quick parking lot change (less socially acceptable than at a ski area lot, but whatever, it was dark) and then got to work trying to choose the best of the content-overload I’d shot that day to make a quick story so that I could tease the premiere party and it would make sense in the timeline.

Aaron won this stop – he told the Banana Republic cashier about our plans to we the next morning and the whirlwind of a trip we’d be on and it seems she may have “forgotten” to charge him for the most expensive item he bought (a $15 sweater!)

When he got back in the car, fresh as a daisy, I was still swearing profusely at Instagram, my iPhone and the Ghost of Steve Jobs for making the simple act of sharing photos with the people not as easy as I wanted it to be. Aaron quietly navigated us to PigNic Pub and Patio for the party. Before we even made it inside, we found Tim Humphreys, Nial Romanek, Johnny Brady, and Dakota Whitaker out front enjoying a legal spliff, which was just the medicinal bump I needed to enter a room full of people I know and greatly enjoy.
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The welcoming crew – Johnny Brady and Nial Romanek.
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After some quick catch up, I told Aaron I was going to venture inside to try and secure a beer. A risky- proposition because through the doors I found nearly all my Reno snow-homeys. Christine Savage was in the bar queue and I soon had two Modelo Especial’s in my hand, but delivering them back out front well, that was gonna be the hard part.

Tim and Hannah Eddy were hanging out in the corner with their new book “Split the Difference” for sale. Gray Thompson was making the rounds, handing out hugs and spreading the vibe for “Board the World.” The Boreal cat-crew (Lane Knaack and Joey Leppien) were posted up at the bar, and Smokin’ Jay was shouting loudly at me about that one amazing time we’d shared at a Hookah bar in Germany. A shit ton of shit was being raffled off to benefit nature and Project Snow. The stars of Too Hard (aka Powanoia aka our Mammoth crew) had secured the best seat in the house for watching the videos playing on a screen. And a bunch of people I didn’t know filled in all the gaps. The only notable people missing were Kai Ujeski and Danyale Patterson, who assured me hours earlier they were “just about to leave their house.”  

The party felt like the best house party ever. All my friends, jammed into a cool space with chill patio zones in the front and back. The drinks were affordable ($3 cans of Modelo were the go-to) and the bartenders were on it. I ordered two whiskey gingers, expecting shitty whiskey and a splash of ginger ale, and instead got craft cocktails with shitty whiskey and actual ginger beer. Those two drinks were enough to milk while the organizers wrestled with technology in order to get Too Hard to play on the big screen. The video was sick, duh, but it really wowed Aaron, who now got the fact that not only was our Mammoth crew fun to talk shit with, they actually fucking kill it on snowboards too.
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All this excitement, weed and booze had made us sleepy and maybe hungry again, and we decided to dip out before getting to see Tim Humphrey’s movie “Uncaged,” or waiting for Dangy and Kai to arrive. After all, it was nearly 8 pm and we had a wedding to plan and execute before our scheduled appointment with the Boreal marketing team at 10 am the next morning.

As anyone who knows her could have guessed, Dangy texted “Where u at” right as we crawled into bed at the Nugget Hotel Casino.
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November 12, 2017, 6:00 AM PST

We woke up at 6 am in our totally adequate room in the less-nice wing of the Nugget. I’d told our wedding party, including Maid-of-honor Madison, Wedding Planner Fancy, photographer Joey Leppien and Second-angle photographer/best man Kieth to meet us at the Chapel of the Belles (Reno’s oldest chapel and also the home of the original drive-thru chapel) at 9 am sharp, where we’d be dressed and ready.

However, when I started googling what we’d actually need to do to make this a legal thing I learned two things: 1) We needed to go to the county clerk’s office (which opened at 8 am due to it being Sunday and Veteran’s day weekend) to get our marriage certificate and 2) Chapel of the Belles didn’t open until 10am that day.
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With nearly two hours to figure out somewhere else to tie the knot, we decided to get ready and go grab breakfast somewhere by the county clerk’s office. Aaron was driving and I was assigned to pick the place, so when I saw the yelp ad for Peg’s Glorified Eggs, my previous Reno breakfast experience a couple years back – returned to me. This place had the best Huevos Rancheros I’d ever had. They came on a huge skillet with mac salad, fruit salsa, beans and rice. Aaron got the Loco Moco – a hawaiian classic of similar girth to my Mexican staple.  It turns out Guy Fieri can be right, and even though the little spray-painted head that marked this as a restaurant featured on “Diners Drive Ins and dives” had long been painted over, I’ll give him some props for finding this spot.  The service was quick – the staff was friendly, and as an extra bonus, the address was 420 – a perfect wedding day for a casual cannabis enthusiast such as myself! Not only did we get full in a hurry, we also noticed that Aaron’s Stinky Socks x Third Eye co perfectly matched my Pendleton wedding dress. We signed the check at exactly 7:55am and  headed to the government HQ and acquire our official wedding license.

It’s kind of scary how easy it was to sign up for our legal lives together. The woman helping us was a pro – she didn’t flinch when started laughing hilarious at rule #2 on the sheet (You can’t marry anyone who is closer relation than a second cousin) and made sure we triple checked the spelling and address info on this legal document. Aaron put down his card for the total bill of $60 and by 8:15 we were ready to coordinate the rest of the wedding.
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Instead of Chapel of the Belles, we’d found Chapel of the Arches. It was tucked between a long-ago-closed pawn shop, and a full dumpster parked in the valet parking section of the casino next door. At 9 am on a brisk and sunny Sunday morning, only the most motivated panhandlers had secured their spots, and most of career-bums were still sleeping in the nearby park.

Our wedding party had sent it the night before – and woken up in Kings Beach and Truckee only a few minutes before 9 – but they still managed to arrive by 9:10, just the time that Aaron and I had decided on which room in the chapel we’d prefer to say our ‘I Dos.’ Madison brought a date named Andre ($4 and ready to pop!) as well as some concealer for my zits. Fancy and Madison wore cute black dresses that amazingly enough, managed to coordinate perfectly with my dress. Joey looked so dashing in his Carhartt button down that I didn’t even hesitate to hand him my Canon 60D to shoot our photos and Kieth was really ready. Not only was he looking good, but down to give the other Kieth Rutherford (an actual wedding photographer) a serious run for his money.

Before our guests were permitted to join us, our officiator (we’ll call him Reverend Reno) took us aside to ask us if we’d like a prayer.

“No!” we exclaimed in unison, and with that, things got under way. I didn’t want to walk down the aisle (ain’t no one got time for that) so Aaron I stood at the podium facing each other as the wedding party was seated and the ceremony began.
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“We’re gathered here today … Blah blah blah blah blah … You can smile, you know,” Reverend Reno said as I chewed on my lips. My mind raced about the gravity of the words I was about to say, but at his urging, I let it all go and cracked a smile.

Aaron stood across from me grinning the whole time and grabbed my hands as Rev Reno occasionally said things that required responses. Amidst the blur of traditional bullshit, he asked if we had any family in the room. I glanced back at my friends and we all nodded in unison.

“Snowboard family!”

Aaron smiled and reach out to pat my stomach. “Also, she’s three months.”

The awkward pause was real for about 5 seconds before I rubbed my stomach and exclaimed, “It’s a burrito! Geez! Did you see the size of those huevos this morning!”

In the name of not being sarcastic assholes, we opted for the pre-written vows and said our I Dos. As the words “you may kiss the bride” were looming near, Aaron leaned over and gave me a kiss.

“Hey!” Reverend Reno said, “Not yet!”

“Don’t tell me what to do!” Aaron interjected. “She’s my wife and I’ll kiss her whenever I want.”
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We busted open the doors to the Chapel of the Arches, to pop back into the reality of Reno. A few more bums had woken up and were excited to take pictures with me, the new bride. The sun was so damn bright I wished I was wearing shades. We resisted the urge to jaywalk in front of a cop (I’m a married woman, now!) and went to the park one block away. A huge metal art piece reading “Believe” was the perfect setting for some photos and our official cake ceremony. Aaron and I stood side-by-side and I impatiently waited to open the second cookie while my media team got into place. We cracked the cookie and Aaron read the fortune aloud.

“A man who hurries cannot walk with dignity…”

“…IN BED!” I added giggling harder than my inner 15-year-old would have at not only the joke, but the fact that I’d rushed the shit out of this entire wedding and it couldn’t have gone better if I’d spent three years planning it.
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For our final wedding mission, we headed a quarter-mile up the street to the official Arch of Reno to pop the bottle of Andre and get some more pictures of the whole wedding party. Along the way we passed a couple of young, attractive panhandlers (who clearly didn’t know about hand jobs) and asked for change, saying they were just trying to get a beer.  

I dismissed their requests quickly by gesturing at my outfit, “I don’t have any pockets! I just got married!” They smiled, and said, “true!” as we scampered off.  Once we made it to the Arch, we piled out into the median without even slowing traffic – it’s almost like the city of Reno plans on people taking pictures there – and got some more epic shots.
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Making beggars happy!
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I was buzzing around trying to figure out how to get one of the entire wedding party when a man who looked to be in his late 60s-80s offered to take a photo of all of us. Street smarts told me handing my IPhone to someone on the streets of Reno may be a bad idea, but I was sure my new hubby could take him down, so I walked over to hand him my phone.

I set up the exact shot I wanted, showed him how to press the button and went back to join the crew.

The old man fumbled with the phone – turning it off twice before saying, “Maybe I’m not the right man for this job.”

I ran back over and set him up again – this time showing him exactly where to hold his hands and how to press the top button vs trying to see the one on the screen. “Just hold it down!” I said. “I believe in you.”
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November 12, 2017. 10 AM PST

With a successful 45-minute wedding and photoshoot, we were amped and ready to get the honeymoon going! We’d loosely planned a reception at Boreal, and Aaron successfully avoided hitting two deer on the 30-minute drive up I-80 before we’d even pulled into the parking, nabbing the perfect marketing-office-adjacent spot.

Aaron headed off to find a restroom while I dropped in to chat with the Boreal Marketing team. Tucker hooked us up with passes, intro’d us to Sam and Brianna, and connected us with official Boreal photographer Jake, who agreed to shoot a couple more wedding photos for us with some snow cats at props. Though the idea of taking a couple laps did sound easy and fun, changing out of my wedding shoes and into snowboard boots pre-12-hour drive did not. So we passed on snowboarding, gave the Boreal crew a sixpack of Authentic Portland PBR, and opted to get back on the road.
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With one quick pit stop to change and pee at a scenic rest area, we pulled into the In and Out in  Auburn for our first lunch together as a married couple at noon. Aaron’s sister used to live in Auburn and he wanted to get a couple photos of me in the gold panner, as well as maybe enjoy each other’s company in Old Town. He knew my photo ADHD would be satiated and he was right!
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More importantly, I decided it was time to make it official and make my new husband buy me up some jewelry. Our first stop was one of those random oddities shops that sells crap your weird aunt buys you when she goes on vacation. This seemed like a plausible option for buying a wedding ring, so I walked up to the girl at the counter and asked if they sold any cheap rings. Surrounded by knicknacks and gag candy, she just shook her head, “No, but you might try the Silver Store – it’s right across the street.”

Now Silver sounded a little bourgeois for me – I was thinking plastic – but I figured hey, you only get married once, so fuck it! Aaron escorted me across the street to find exactly the sort of shop I was looking for, with a sales lady keen and ready to help us. I quickly explained the situation.

“We just got married and I need a ring. I don’t wear jewelry, and I don’t want anything fancy. Basically just looking to spend the least amount of money possible to have an everlasting symbol of our love.”

She sort of laughed, rolled her eyes and said, “OK, well, do you know your ring size?”

I told her 7ish and she walked me straight to the other side of the jewelry case, where the options for simple silver bands were plentiful. She then pulled out the thinnest silver ring I’ve ever seen. “This one is $12,” she said.

Now, I’m not fancy, but even I knew a ring like that wouldn’t pass along the ‘I’m taken, asshole’ message I was going for. I looked at Aaron and asked, “What’s my budget here?”

“Well, are we getting ice cream, after?” he asked with a totally straight face, and set my budget at $23.

The lady tried again, this time with a ring that was $21,  but I dunno, it just wasn’t what I was looking for. My hand gravitated towards a slightly thicker band with a bit of embellishment on each side. “How much is this one?” I asked.

The lady pulled it out and did the mental math. She hesitated slightly before breaking the news. “$31.” She looked at Aaron who was still showing little emotion and said, “She picked it – I’m not even trying to upsell you, but if that’s what’s gonna make her happy…”
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I looked at Aaron with a smile and said, “If I can get this one, I’ll cover ice cream.” He finally broke his facade and said, “Ok dear, whatever you want.”

Our next stop with the ice cream place, but it turned out Aaron didn’t even want ice cream after all, so we got back on the long road home. We drove back up 1-5, going much faster and with a lot fewer curves on the drive down. We stopped a couple times – once for Wendy’s frostys in the central valley, where I was able to sweet talk the kid behind the counter into letting us get half vanilla/half chocolate frosties. Another time at the Olive Pit, a cheesy roadside attraction that is basically just a fancy gas station selling all the olive and olive-bi-products you could possibly imagine. I got a bag of almonds and a magnet that looked like a Cali licence plate which read “Olive You.” And at dusk we consummated our relationship in a trainyard somewhere near Lake Shasta. Our final California experience was a stop at All Star Liquor, where we scored $260 worth of top shelf booze for $160 and left patting ourselves on the back on a honeymoon well done.

As we crossed back into Oregon, the first rain drops we’d seen since we left Oregon three days earlier spattered the windshield. We discussed what should be our first dinner as a man and wife. Ok, it was an easy decision and as we pulled into the Taco Bell in Ashland, we were both in agreement we just wanted to be home.

We walked into the restaurant to find no one. No one at the counter. No one eating food. It was a stark contrast from All Star liquors, where 5 dudes in santa hats had nearly tackled us trying to explain all their promos, but it felt good to be back in Oregon. About five minutes later, a nerdy dude came out carrying a cash drawer and apologized for the delay… he turned out to be more of a Taco Bell concierge than cashier, and we dropped some insider knowledge on upcoming menu items which may or may not include Pop Rocks while we waited for our delicious “Mexican” food.

When my Mexican pizza and Aaron’s Nachos Bell Grande were delivered, the thrill was gone. We ate in silence both wishing Portland was 5 hours closer. And as we got back in the car around 7 PM, arguing over who would take the next driving shift, because neither of us wanted to, it was pretty clear the honeymoon was over. But what a 14-hour honeymoon it was! We pulled back into our driveway at 11PM, in plenty of time for Aaron to wake up and go to work at 8 the next morning.
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OFFICIAL BUDGET

Arch of Reno Wedding Chapel: $145
State of Nevada Marriage Licence: $60

GAS: $222.33

Wedding breakfast: $31.58
Wedding lunch at in and out: $10.65
Rehearsal Dinner at nugget $39.54

Honeymoon dinner at Taco Bell: $9.20
Happy hour burgers $33.48
In and Out meal #1: $10.65
Lunch at Robertos: $50.11
Gas Station chicken: $16.25
Breakfast at Goodlife cafe: $37.45
King wah Klamath Falls Chinese food: $29.75

Lift Tickets: COMPED
Three Nights at Mammoth Mountain INN: COMPED
One Night at the Nugget: $108
Illegal Dog Charge: $300

Wedding dress: $80 on sale at Pendleton outlet in Manchester, VT
Aaron’s tux: $25.96 (including one free shirt)
Helmet $65.55
Gloves $65.50
Olive Pit Honeymoon Souvenirs: $21.04
Two pairs of Converse Shoes $73.03
Wedding Ring: $32.18

TOTAL: $1476.25
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Somewhere around Lake Shasta.
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I’m definitely not planning to do it again – but if I did, I wouldn’t change a damn thing! Thanks again to Mammoth Mountain, the Rutherfords, Joey Leppien, Boreal and of course my maid of honor Madison Blackley for the best damn wedding/honeymoon/opening weekend road trip I’ll ever experience.
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Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 8.29.55 AM

After filming two standout parts – opener in State of Mind, closer in Cold World – Deadlung found himself facing sponsor pressure to deliver even more. Unwilling to push himself beyond what he felt humanly possible, he took a step back, and soon found himself without a board sponsor. While he never stopped riding, it seemed the professional snowboard dream may be over for Lung as he neared the dreaded age of 30. However, armed with an iPod nano and a deep passion for sliding on snow, Deadlung kept riding and putting out content, and his career has soldiered on. He joined forces D-Day snowboards and started Tite belts, and is well on his way to achieving his ultimate goal of continuing to snowboard, forever.

Brooke: My first really important question for you is, does D Day pay you in weed?

Deadlung: (laughs) No.

Brooke: Do you wish they did though?

Deadlung: Mmm, no.

Brooke: I actually heard you had to quit smoking weed, after your injury, is that true?

Deadlung:  Well I had to quit smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol…

Brooke: How was that?

Deadlung: It was… well, on top of getting hurt it wasn’t that tight at all… I went like a month without drinking and I went a couple months doing really well with nicotine, well not nicotine, I was chewing nicorette like crazy, but on tobacco I was good. But yeah, it’s a fucking struggle. No cigarettes sucked. That’s one thing to never ever start doing is smoking cigarettes, because it’s the best thing ever, and the worst at the same time. Quitting is so gnarly, you get all dizzy and fatigued and shit and start coughing, I was losing my voice and shit. Appetite goes through the roof though.

 

Once we hit the tree I was like, ‘we’re dead.’ I wasn’t dead

Brooke: When and how did you get hurt?

Deadlung:  I was just like cruising down the cat track on busy ass Martin Luther King holiday weekend, and I was stuck behind this family, so I decided I would just scrub all my speed and cruise down the run off the side of the cat track, instead of continuing down it, cause I wasn’t going to pass them. It was a sketchy zone, so I scrubbed on the right side on my toes and turned to fakie to go across the cat on my toes, facing up the cattrack. I didn’t think anyone was behind me and if there was they were going slow too cause it was a congested area on a sketchy part of the cat track – in a “slow zone,” right before a blind corner… This guy was way behind me for like a quarter mile down the cat track, but I had no idea cause he was that far back. But he was going so fast that he caught up to me super quick. When I went to cruise off the side, he came out of nowhere. I was like going walking speed across the cat track, I wouldn’t have been able to even catch any air off the side, and I didn’t see him. I think if I did and I wasn’t going so slow I could have dodged him. He was going like 35-40 mph probably, cause when he slammed into me it was so fucking loud it made my ears ring. I took him to my chest we flew like 15 feet into a tree. I hit that on my back just right of my spine, and we just exploded. He went down the hill and I guess I bounced back up toward the cat. I ended up hanging off the edge of cat track like 15 feet down from the tree we hit. I couldn’t breathe for like ten fuckin’ minutes and he was screaming like he was dying. I think he thought he broke his femur or something. When he hit me it was so loud and it went all slow motion, washing machine style. I remember thinking it was so bad before we hit the trees and once we hit the tree I was like, ‘we’re dead.’ I wasn’t dead, so I thought he might be dying or paralyzed or something. I just thought this person must be your average beater and isn’t as tough as I am, so I thought he was totally fucked. I’m 6’2” but I only weigh like 162 pounds or some shit, but this guy was like 6’1 and 230 pounds or something. Not fat, but like a big, top heavy,  jock, meathead dude. He just completely fuckin’ destroyed me into a tree. We traveled like 30 feet from impact to where we ended up. Ski patrol showed up with the toboggans and they had some oxygen for me. I think I was able to unstrap and climb back up on the cat like 15 minutes later and the fact that I very painfully stood myself up made me feel tough as fuck. Like, ‘what, nothing can stop me!’ Haha. I had to take the toboggan down to the bottom to the clinic.

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The Deadlung D-Day graphic by Dave Doman

Brooke: Crazy. so what happened to you?

Deadlung: I collapsed my lung. It also got bruised and lacerated. I lacerated my liver, and kidney, bruised a bunch of my ribs on the front and the back, bruised my sternum pretty bad, and fucked up my rotator cuff pretty bad. My neck and my back weren’t stoked either. When I went to physical therapy the dude had to pop my pelvis back into place. He said I was in the same condition as someone that got in a super-bad car accident. On my follow up at the hospital they said I lost about an eighth of my kidney, which I think gave me high blood pressure. I guess that’s fairly common from bad kidney trauma. I usually check it when I go to the grocery store. It’s pre-hypertension but I gotta make sure it doesn’t go higher or I’ll need to take meds, I guess. I also had a hard time sleeping and staying asleep. I thought about that impact noise a lot, and replayed the scene over and over in my head. I was super scared driving on the freeway and riding down the hill. My shadow would scare me all the time when I was shredding. Definitely a good amount of mental trauma to go with the physical, and I’m still working through it all so I can be all good this winter, trying to stay on my exercises and shit.

Brooke: It was at Snowbird?

Deadlung: Yeah. When I was in the clinic there they were like, ‘where does it hurt?’ I said ‘everywhere on my right side.’ Front or back?’ Everywhere, front, inside, back, all the way through me.’ They did some X-rays and nothing was broken, but then I started coughing up blood and they were like ‘Ok, you’re taking an ambulance down the canyon.’ I guess that explained the hurting everywhere part. I guess the other guy walked out of the clinic before I was done and I left in ambulance. When I got to the hospital I found out my injury list after a CAT scan and all that shit. I had to spend the night there to be monitored. I was tripping. My lady went and got me movies to watch, and food and stuff, but they wouldn’t let me eat anyways. I tried to sleep a bit. They hooked me up with some pain relief and a nicotine patch in there. It helped.

Brooke: What’s Snowbird like? You definitely don’t hear as much about it as some of the other resorts in Utah like Park City or Brighton. 

Deadlung: Yeah, they just don’t really cater to snowboarders much at all. They don’t really need to, it’s like a ski and summer resort, you know? There’s lots of lodging there and shit like that, they are mainly just going for families to get up there on vacation, more-so than hooking snowboarders up. It’s always been a little more expensive than the other resorts, I think cause of the tram and the amenities and all that. There’s also not really a scene there… there is, but it’s not like an industry-style “scene” where everyone looks like their favorite pro. I can go up there and nobody knows who I am really, and you don’t get looked up from head to toe, checkin’ out your new shit or whatever. It’s almost like there’s no snowboard scene there, it’s just a bunch of locs drinking beer on the plaza being super stoked on nature and shit. Haha. Hella cool people though. Lots of bird lifers.

Brooke: Yeah, that sounds kind of nice. I’ve been to snowbird a couple times with my family and it’s sick.

Deadlung: Yeah it’s so fun…natural skatepark the whole way down Chips run, non-stop wall hits, cat tracks and rollers.

Brooke: So let’s talk about Tite. Did you start it because you were sick of looking at shoelace-belt man thongs?

Deadlung: I got this DC belt, like, six years ago from Bitner cause he rode for DC, and a couple homies worked for them. So there were these stretchy belts floating around and we all wore them. Then he got a box of these shoelace belts from Haldor’s company and I was like ‘What? There is a belt company?  I wanna start a stretchy belt company!’ We were all amped on the stretchy belts. I was fucking around with name and thought  ‘Tite.’ I thought Tite Belts would be funny cause your belt has to be tight, and all that. Is your belt Tite? My belt is hella Tite! It was just this joke for like five years that would get mentioned. Then somebody was like ‘remember that idea? It might be a good time to do that right now, as far the industry, accessories are sweet.’ So, it just kinda became a reality and I just started drawing. Fucking with a logo. I was writing it over and over for like two weeks, trying to figure out the best way to write it. I have all these old sketches. I kept a stack of paper. I used chisel tip king size sharpie. I finally wrote one I liked and then put it on the computer and my friend Dave Doman helped me perfect it. He’s good on the computer so I gave him part of the company. He’s a sick artist and designer, and we have worked on shit together for over 10 years. We are a good team. We started the SFK! thing together, it stands for Stupid Fuckin Kids!  I came up with the name. It was for this video we made… a super-sick funny homie skate and snowboard video with boobs, filmed off of the screen of nudie films in-between shots. Mad homies and the crew…  kinda just grew and everyone around us were claiming SFK. That was our crew. It got heavy. We made three videos people may never see!

Brooke: Sick.

Deadlung:  The one thing about Tite is I want it to work out to still be in snowboarding, and snowboard, and have it make sense for me to be snowboarding. If I shred a bunch, that’s one more reason to support the brand. If you know the behind the scenes of it you know what’s up. At the Agenda Trade Show in New York people were stoked on it, but I didn’t have to tell them that I have this crazy snowboard team, and they don’t have to know that I’m a pro snowboarder or care what I look like snowboarding. They were just down with the logo and the brand. Snowboarding didn’t have to sell it. But then in the inside world, in the snowboard industry, I feel like people are more likely to want to represent or support your brand if it’s going back into you actually snowboarding, not partying. Like [they’ll support it] if it’s gonna allow me to keep snowboarding. Before, I did have this party image where if I had started a brand back then, people would have been like ‘oh yeah, let’s fucking support that brand so Deadlung can just party his life away.’  It’s like, no, that’s not what it’s going towards now. Tite isn’t going towards drugs and bar tabs and shit, it’s gonna go towards me going snowboarding cause thats all I really care about. Like supporting Tite is promoting a healthy lifestyle for me, and will bring hella nollies in the future.

Brooke: And do you have a pretty Tite team too, right?

Deadlung:  The team is the best team ever. My whole team I assembled with text messages – Like ‘Yo I’m gonna start this brand, do you wanna ride for it?’ I think that was before I even had the logo. Then I started showing homies the logo or whatever and yeah, fucking Bradshaw’s down, Leblanc’s down, this guy is down. I’d ask, ‘Do you wanna ride for my new belt company Tite?’ And people were like, ‘Duh, is that even a fucking question?’ So I’m like, ‘Who else? Who else?’ Shit, the list is getting big. How many people? 22? Alright, there are all my favorite snowboarders right there, supporting my brand. I was super stoked to get all that support from the homies and have it be so easy to build the illest team in the history of snowboarding.

Brooke: What happened between you and Technine? How did your relationship end?

Deadlung: Um, I mean, I don’t really know the full story except that they got new investors. They joined with a couple different brands. There was meetings had. I filmed half a part that year and they thought I just wasn’t into it anymore. But the year before I had last part, and the year before that I had first part, so I was like ‘Fuck, I need to chill for a second.’ You know, learn some new tricks instead of just scaring myself. I wanted to progress trick wise, but its hard on the filming level. I was riding every single day still, but it snowed so much that year I was just riding powder at Snowbird all year. I still filmed some stuff I was proud of though.

And then, I don’t know. Yeah, I got fully fired from Tech Nine. I didn’t think it was gonna happen after all the work I put in for them in previous years. people still affiliate me with Tech Nine. Last year at Hot Dawgz and Handrails I went to fuck with Bradshaw at the Tech Nine booth and get his autograph. I ended up signing shit for kids there saying shit about my parts in the Tech Nine videos.

Brooke: Aww.

Deadlung: I was like, well, ‘hey I’ll take a pay cut for not producing as much this last year,’ but they were like ‘we can’t even do that.’ Internally they didn’t have a choice really. I think that the T9 dudes involved were fighting for me, but in these meetings with people from the other brands, the investors picked up saying shit about mini-shred, this and that. I think one of my least favorite snowboarders of all time was in that meeting not rooting for me. I’m glad he wasn’t stoked on me, but like I said, I don’t really know.

Brooke: Right.

Deadlung: And, a fucking new video guy that came in… he tried to turn it into this fucking movie. Like it’s a video man, it’s not a movie. You wanna make a movie, go make a fucking movie, you know? It’s a snowboarding video. It doesn’t have a plot. I didn’t like filming with him so I wasn’t filming that much. I didn’t think I had to film that much every single year, you know? I figured content lasts a long time. Not in snowboarding I guess… but I don’t know. I was owed a bunch of money and shit when I got fired.  So I mean, that’s what it is to be a pro snowboarder. To be owed money, basically.

A fucking new video guy that came in… he tried to turn it into this fucking movie. Like it’s a video man, it’s not a movie. You wanna make a movie, go make a fucking movie, you know? It’s a snowboarding video. It doesn’t have a plot.

Brooke: Did it make you want to quit snowboarding?

Deadlung: No, that will never happen. I was just like, ‘Well, this isn’t really working.’ I got on this other company for a fraction of the little amount that I was getting before. I mean, I tried, but I didn’t really have any confidence anymore. I just didn’t really think people wanted to see me snowboard much, so I was just like ‘fuck, whatever.’ But then as the years went on, I was like ‘okay, there was more of a demand to see me snowboard once I didn’t give them too much content.’ I thought I was kind of a novelty with my different-style tricks. But then later realized people genuinely wanted to watch me do tricks, and it wasn’t just a mean joke. Haha. J2 told me actually, he said, ‘don’t work too hard, you might get fired.’ He maxed out his photo incentive, which was like $10,000 or something ridiculous, two years in a row, and then got fired. Like, he obviously did what they wanted him to do, so… That’s basically what happened to me. I gave them too much and they expected that fucking every year. I’m not that type of person. I did some things I was very proud of and everything beyond. I didn’t want to just one-down myself just to get shots. Like, why would I board slide that kinked rail? I already boardslid something twice as big and gnarly the year before. Why would I jump off that? I already ollied a few things way bigger. I just wanted to do new shit. And if anything, filming was almost holding back my progression, as far as becoming a better snowboarder and learning new shit. You know? Trying to learn new tricks on scales like that is hard.

Brooke: It seems like with that side of snowboarding, staying alive is what it’s turned into and if that’s what you want to do, do it. But it’s hard to maintain that and continue to progress your career.

Deadlung: Yeah. I feel like I’m better at snowboarding now than I’ve ever been. It feels better, to me it looks better than my older shit. Looking back on old parts there was stuff  I did back then where I like the way it looked, but then there was also stuff where it’s like ‘shit, if I did that now it would look twice as good.’  I didn’t want to stop snowboarding, that’s for sure, because I didn’t really start snowboarding professionally ’til I was like 21.  I was getting older and had to get a job and shit. How am I gonna work if I wanna snowboard every single day of my life, you know? So it was just basically by any means necessary. All I wanted to do is snowboard. When the funds stopped coming in I moved back in with my parents because I don’t give a fuck about anything except being able to snowboard. Yeah, I could work a job, pay my friend rent at his house, snowboard three or four days a week, but fuck that, that’s not enough for me. I have to live close to the mountains and be able to go shred every day I want. Because like I said, I don’t really give a fuck about anything besides snowboarding.

Brooke: How’s living with your parents?  Are mom and dad lung cool?

Deadlung: Dad lung, yes he’s very cool. Mamma lung, she’s very cool as well. She’s worked at Snowbird for 25+ years… Something like that, so I basically just grew up there. I’d go up to work with her at like 7:30 in the morning, shred all day and get quarters to go play in the arcade after snowboarding and wait for her till 4 or 5. There were actually a couple snowboard shops up there that played snowboard videos and I’d hang out at them. The homies in the shop were super cool to me and shit and would take care of me. My parents were the type of people who took me out of school when it snowed, which back in the day was a lot. Even in elementary school, it was like, ‘oh it snowed, my dad is taking me to Snowbird.’ I would go ski pow instead of going to school.

Brooke: Yeah that’s awesome, my parents are the same way. Ski bums!

Deadlung: I didn’t have to go to school if it snowed a lot, and then in high school I just lined up my last class of the day, cause I think we had four classes and lunch or something. So I made sure I had last lunch, then my last class was something I could make up with a packet or summer school, and I just wouldn’t go to that class for the entire trimester. I was like, English? I’m gonna do that on my own. I’m going shredding at 12:30. Fuck going to school all day, that’s a waste of a day. So even in high school I did it in a smart way where I made sure my last class was something I could make up super easy so I could just shred.

Brooke: Did you graduate?

Deadlung: Yeah. For sure. But I didn’t walk with my class, cause I didn’t wanna walk. I left this one packet lingering till like the day after everyone walked and then I was like here you go, I’m done. It just seemed like such a waste of a day to walk.

Brooke: Absolutely. Do you ever regret not going to college and taking a more traditional path?

Deadlung: Not really. I got a life scholarship through being a pro snowboarder. You get all these years to learn shit that you’re into, you know? I’ve learned a lot in the last like 12 or however fucking many years it’s been. The last job I had before I started making money shredding I just left mid- shift and didn’t say shit… I’ve had a couple random jobs here and there since. I’ve been working at a golf course now to play free golf and have a little extra spending money. I did take two classes at community college, but I didn’t even check to see if I passed those classes.

Brooke: So, are you able to make money through snowboarding still?

Deadlung: Yeah, I get some money from D-Day

Brooke: Cool. What’s it like working with Mike Ranquet and Chris Roach? They seem like they must be a trip.

Deadlung: Aw dude, it’s so sick. I remember when I walked into a homey’s house, Roach was in town, and I went over to meet him. He was just like fucking so NorCal. He doesn’t have long bleached hair, but the whole time I was talking to him I could just picture this bleached long hair on him. And sunglasses. Then we rode Snowbird for like two weeks. It snowed like every other day, so I just shredded with Roach. And then Ranquet became involved this last summer. I’d met him a couple times. He worked for Electric. When we reunited, we were instant homies. When he was in town this past year, me and him snowboarded 26 days in a row at Snowbird. No days off.  He counted them and I was like really? I haven’t taken a break in that long?  I snowboard a lot. I did way too soon after my injury. It hurt my insides so bad but I dealt with it cause I wanted to make turns. Everything I did, I’d get this stomach ache though. It was gnarly. Then two months after the injury I got another check up and the doctor was just like, ‘you are already snowboarding?’ I was like ‘Yeah, for a couple weeks now, painfully. Is that bad?’ He said, ‘well it doesn’t really slow down the healing, but your organs are bouncing around in this little thin sack.’ I guess it wasn’t good. I guess your organs have just like this tiny thin bag around ’em so when I was going down the hill it was just painful… my kidney got smashed from getting hit, but it still re-grew to its normal shape, an eighth of it died though.

Brooke: Oh no, should we call you dead kidney?

Deadlung: People say shit like you only need one kidney, of course, but kidney trauma can give you high blood pressure and shit. I don’t think I’ve ever had high blood pressure and I kind of do now.

Brooke: God, that’s gnarly. Are you better now? Did the doctors clear you to snowboard?

Deadlung: Um, yeah, I mean, I took like a month and a half off, and I rode for like three months maybe. The first month of that was like super mellow, painful riding. But I never ended up getting the confidence back in my body. Landing really hard or jumping to flat just seemed like my insides would explode. Even though it might have just been mental, my body really wasn’t ready. So this summer I’ve basically been trying to get my mind ready so I can mentally do harder stuff. Hood was fun, and I did some tricks up there, and I felt really good on my feet, but with an I-don’t-want-to-fall type of mentality still. The thing is, even when I’m trying hard or riding a little gnarlier, I don’t really fall that much anyways. I do here or there, but I have good days without falling ever. It’s something that I actually think about now though, like, ‘fuck I don’t wanna fall or fall like this because my shoulder is still jacked and my core is still weak.’ I mean, yeah. I guess they never had to clear me to snowboard, but…

Brooke: I always really liked Lungie Land. You were kinda one of the pioneers of the web series it seems like. Do you have plans to keep that going?

Deadlung: Yeah, I didn’t even really think about it for about a year after making like 39 of them. Then in the summer I made Volume 40 finally and people were hyped I brought it back.  Snowboarder Mag asked me to make them, cause I hadn’t made one in like a year, then made Episode 40. It was just like stuff that I found on my phone from that year. They were like, ‘what can we do to bring it back, like what do you need?’ I was like ‘what can you do? Are you talking about money? For Lungie Land?’  And they were like, ‘yeah,’ and I’m like, ‘Well shit, I could probably make a few then!’

Brooke: It’s amazing what money accomplishes.

Deadlung: So I did a series exclusively with them, like eight episodes. I called it Chapter Two. So Chapter Two, Volume Eight was the 48th episode, and then last year I just did one long one called Lungie Land, The Mixtape, so then that was episode 49. Then I just did volume 50 and 51 for this last year, and they hooked me up for those too. I made 52 just recently from our Mount Hood trip. I just finished that, and that is going on their site in the next month or so, whenever they have a pocket. I sprung it on them out of the blue so they are finding a slot for it and gonna hook me up again. I made the last three edits on my phone.. The first 30 or however many, maybe 26, I’m not too sure, were all filmed on an iPod. This one right here, I got it in the sound dock.

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The original iPod: Lungie land, good herbs, SFK, passion everyday, Bozwreck.

Brooke: Awesome, classic.

Deadlung: It says, Lungie Land… passion every day. And yup, just filmed with this little guy. That’s where I started. I saw on the Apple site that they had a camera built into the next iPod Nano and I was like “Holy shit a camera I can fit in my pocket” and it was only like $150 or something! ‘Sick, I’m just gonna start filming everything in that thermal shit.’ It was fun. I was making like one a week for a while.

Brooke: Phone cameras are amazing. It’s crazy how far technology has come.

Deadlung: I finally stepped it up to using a GoPro at the end of this last year. Ranquet gave me one of his that he said was from GoPro for me. I didn’t get it till I was in Japan, so I started messing around with it and the footy goes straight to your phone. I can film it with the GoPro, put it on my phone, and edit it on my phone with iMovie. So I can do it whenever I feel like it without it touching the computer until I have to upload it to Vimeo. I gotta get that 6 Plus though. I’m on my phone so much.

Brooke: Oh the big one? You could just get a tablet, iPhone mega.

Deadlung: They’re not too big, I put my friend’s in my pocket for like 20 minutes, walked around and it’s fine. But I can snowboard with so much shit in my pants pockets so it’s all good. Some people can’t even put a dollar bill in their pocket and ride.

Brooke: Have you considered going straight to Instagram? Screw the worldwide web all together?

Deadlung: Well, I put a lot of stuff on Instagram. Most of the tricks are on there. I don’t know if it’s too much, if I should save stuff, but I was talking to Scott Stevens about it. The shots that I’m real stoked on that are really good tricks, like should I be saving this for a Lungie Land? But Instagram is easy, you get little pieces. It’s kind of like a teaser the whole way along, and then you can turn it into a full edit with its own feel.

Brooke: I don’t think saving stuff makes sense anymore, personally.

Deadlung: All of the best shit gets posted anyways, and the teasers show most of the best anyway. So then you go watch it and it’s like well there’s those like five really good shots that were already on Instagram and the rest is like the stuff that’s not quite as good. So you see the best shit first anyways. The little insta edits, you only have 15 seconds, you can’t fit everything from that day in there.

Brooke: Yeah it’s hard to tell a story on Instagram.

Deadlung: Yeah. I think it’s cool though. I don’t see why not, it’s almost like constant coverage, especially if you snowboard every day. It’s not that hard just to get like one clip –  like,  ‘oh hey you should film this real quick!’

Brooke: Do you think filming snowboarding makes snowboarding more fun for you?

Deadlung: Not always. I kinda do it on hard, shitty days really. Like days that people will be like ‘Okay yeah, I’ll film that. I don’t want to hit this crusty shit.’ Then I don’t feel bad for having a homie film. I like to film people too. It seems like the best days are when shit doesn’t get filmed, because everybody just shreds and hits all the jumps instead of filming each other.

Brooke: You’re already having too much fun to pull out the camera.

Deadlung: Yeah. But it can make it more fun for sure. It’s like instant gratification, looking at something. Also, I think it helps figure out the way you like to do tricks, like the way it feels, but then you have to look at the way it looks too. I think it helps sometimes.  Like, ‘shit we gotta get this,’ or ‘let me film you doing this, do a slash or whatever.’ That shit’s cool. But I try to make them good too. Not, ‘look I went snowboarding’ but ‘look I went snowboarding and I did something I’m stoked on.’ It’s kinda like not what you do, it’s how you do it. And golf is like it’s the opposite, it’s not how, it’s how many.

Brooke: Explain.

Deadlung: Well in golf, it’s how many strokes. It doesn’t matter how you got it into the hole, you know if you hit 3 ugly shots and make your putt, cool. But then if some guys hits some amazing fucking shot and 3 putts, it’s the same thing on the scorecard. It’s not how, it’s how many… In snowboarding it’s like it’s not what, it’s how.  So I try to make it quality, where I approve instead of just putting out tons of bullshit. I’m not gonna make an edit of me like carving down a groom trail or something. I want it to be a good trick.

Brooke: Are you saying that filming carving isn’t legit?

Deadlung: I’m not saying that, I’m just saying your not gonna see me do that all the time. My first couple years riding were all about making sweet carves and riding down black diamonds. So it’s not really new. I feel kinda dorky trying to style a sick carve out. Haha. I’ve know how to do that forever.

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Brooke: How do you feel about the #weedistite movement?

Deadlung: What’s that?

Brooke:  It’s a hash tag. Someone is probably trying to sell T-shirts, too.

Deadlung: Yeah my friend Bryce, he’s from Laguna, lives in Colorado, he said something like, “hey you know that quote from that movie?’ It’s from that movie The End, and Jonah Hill is like ‘Oh yeah, weed is tight, weed it tight.’ It’s just like one quote from a movie… he may even be the one that had the first hash tag.

Brooke: Do you think Utah will ever legalize it?

Deadlung: I don’t know. I used to think it would be the last state that ever would, but we’re like pretty much surrounded. Every state around us is getting pretty close, you know. They do the synthetic form for like people with cancer here, its called marinol, it’s a little round green pill. They’ve been talking about it and it seems more likely now then it did before, like even last year. I was thinking it would be the last of the 50, even those Southern states, probably. But we will hopefully before the close minded South.

Brooke: Yeah they’re gonna take a while. They’re still fighting against gay people and abortion down there.

Deadlung: I was just gonna say, full on bigot country.

Brooke: There’s still dry counties in Alabama where you’re not allowed to drink. Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, I mean the Jack Daniels distillery in Tennessee is in a dry county, so they make whiskey but you can’t buy it there.

Deadlung: Damn.

Brooke: The South is crazy. It’s like they’re still fighting the civil war. I think Utah’s got the Mormon population that affects a lot of the politics.

Deadlung: Yeah, I mean I don’t really care about that shit, it’s like it’s always been illegal. I don’t think even if it was legal I would like to go get it at the store. I don’t think I would because it would be way more expensive than free.

Brooke: Well free is free, but being able to go to the store and buy weed is the best thing ever. Because it’s not like you just get whatever they have. It’s like here’s our menu, here’s like 60 different kinds of weed and it tells you the THC and CBD levels, and then you can get candy, you can get cookies – I got these weed e-cigs called juju joints, preloaded and they’re so easy. But I actually voted against it in Oregon the first time around, cause I was like fuck that get the government out of my weed!

Deadlung:  It’s bad for the growers, some of them.  I went to a store in Colorado and you didn’t have to have the medical card, like you can just walk in with your ID and grab some shit, but there’s like a separate shelf of higher grade you had to have the card for. If I’m going into a store to get it I’m getting the best shit. I don’t smoke garbage. I’d almost rather not smoke. Like I’ll taste it, someone will pass me something and I’ll be like ‘Uhhh here you go, I don’t really want anymore of that.’ Full on snob.

Brooke: That’s true. It’s crazy how different it is. It seems like there’s sort of a conflict in snowboarding right now  – like the whole Burton thing  – where people are like mad about these people doing coke and their putting weed on their Instagram, but  snowboarding has always been a party culture, right?

Deadlung: Yeah, that’s snowboarding. I mean especially once you start like learning about the industry. One of the things you learn about is tons of people fucking do coke. But that was a long time ago and I don’t know how it is these days because I’m not really like in any sort of party scene or shit like, that you know? I’m not 25 anymore.

Brooke: Totally, and a lot of people aren’t 25 anymore. Now we’re starting to see the next generation come up with people’s kids and it’s like these people who grew up partying and doing blow and being bad are now like ‘oh, my kids don’t need to see that!’ It’s a tough one.

Deadlung:  People just shouldn’t be able to pinpoint you as that, you know? Like you shouldn’t know that about a person unless you really know them.

Brooke: Are you cool with kids knowing you smoke weed?

Deadlung:  I mean it’s just a given, I don’t like promote it as much anymore. It just got old to me, it’s like it’s obvious. There’s plenty of people who just post photos of their dab rigs and shit, like that’s cool. I kinda did it for a while because I thought it was funny, but it just wasn’t as funny to me anymore. I don’t need to glamorize it. I think maybe I wasn’t drinking as much anymore, so I wasn’t like ‘ah yeah check me out! I drink beer and I smoke weed bro, like check me out!’ One of the last Lungie Lands, in the intro, I’m like chugging this giant Pellegrino. I put it up in the camera like I’m like flossin’ a beer or something, but it’s just Pellegrino. So as far as promoting that, I mean, I definitely have my opinions about partying too much and that kind of shit. Definitely have fun, I still have fun, but I don’t think it’s something that kids need to think is the coolest thing ever because it can really fuck you up. It can really slow you down. You keep doing that all the time, and all of the sudden you’re 30 and you’re like ‘fuck, it’s just too much to handle.’ It’ll make you go crazy if you let it.

Brooke: Absolutely. There’s a reason they say drugs are bad.

Deadlung:  Yeah, people seem so happy partying but they’re actually miserable at the same time, so I don’t know. If it doesn’t completely fuck your life up –  if you can use it to your advantage and use it for creativity or innovating things or ideas you know – then that’s cool. There’s people that are grateful alcoholics and they do this or that better with some drinks, but as far as partying all the fucking time, that’s not gonna help you. It’s not gonna help you get ahead in life if you fucking drink way too much and party too much and do too many drugs. Some people can do it, but I don’t think they’ll do anything to the full potential that they could do it. It makes life harder, basically. It’s like if you want your life to be even harder then it already is, then become an alcoholic.

Brooke: Yeah it’s when you start using alcohol to make bad things better you get into trouble – you can’t fix things with alcohol. You can make good things better with drugs or alcohol, but if you have problems, drugs and alcohol are definitely not the solution. At least that’s my take on it.

Deadlung:  I’m talking to the kids here. Kids, have fun when you’re young, but you gotta like fuckin’ reel it in as you get a little older, you know. There’s this thing, this RZA quote, it says something like, ‘the drunken Buddha, you can drink yourself into enlightenment, but the side effect of whatever your doing is gonna determine how long you enjoy your enlightenment.’  If you overuse it, then you’re not gonna be enlightened anymore you’re just gonna get beyond that point and not even be able to fuckin’ get happy, you know?

Brooke: Yep. So, how old are you?

Deadlung:  32.

Brooke: I like being in my 30s. I think it’s great – you got your shit figured out more and you’re still young, you’ve still got your health and your body’s good.

Deadlung:  Yeah, sure. When I turned 30, that night I was just like screaming at people at the bar and friends like ‘I’m fucking 30 bitch! I made it! I’m fucking 30! Hell yeah! I can act smarter than everybody now!’ Like, I’ve been around so long dude, I know what’s up. Haha

Brooke: And what happens when you’re 40?

Deadlung:  I don’t know. Keep shredding. That’s what I’ve always thought about too, is body preservation. Like, I could completely destroy myself, and it’s fun, but I also wanna be able to snowboard when I’m 50, and 60, and like even older you know. There’s guys that are 75, 80 on the hill fucking skiing down. I wanna be that dude, shredding when I’m 80. I don’t wanna fucking not be able to snowboard, so I’m trying to preserve my body for as long as I can so I can be able to shred forever.

Brooke: Definitely. Got some shout outs and thanks for me?

Deadlung:  Shout-out and thanks to my girlfriend for dealing with all my shit, Ranquet, Roach and Nico at D-Day for continuing to support me doing what I love most. Everyone involved in Tite with me, the whole Tite team for having my back to help me get this thing started, especially Bennee, Bitner, Bradshaw, Doman, Casey, and Lucas Magoon, for being good friends over the many years, and the mutual respect we have and inspiration. Thanks to anyone that’s ever filmed me or taken a photo of me. Thanks to dad lung and momma lung for supporting my life and being super cool. Thanks to everyone that likes to watch me snowboard still.

 

sethhill

When Mt. Hood Meadows hosted Superpark, there was one jump that was especially absurd. It was probably 40 feet tall, 60 feet long and about 10 feet wide. Basically, you would have to point it to clear it, and hope you didn’t drift at all before you made it to the landing, or you would likely crumple into a pile of broken bones in the flat. Most of the riders in attendance spent the week carving out the side of the jump into a wave, but Seth Hill was one of the few who just sent it – spinning like a dreidel, at that. That’s the kind of guy Seth is. He might not be the “coolest” snowboarder, but he isn’t afraid to bust his ass to make it happen, and send it when it counts. Considering he’s spent the last five years traveling the world, snowboarding and getting paid for it, we’d say he’s a success. He also happens to be one of the nicest humans you will ever encounter.

Tell me about breaking your back last summer. What were you thinking when you decided to air over the entire hip and the trail below at High Cascade?

I’m not one of the coolest of our snowboard pro guys, so if you want to get shots in the recap, you kinda have to do something different or unique. I could session the big jump all day any maybe get a clip, or if you do something unique people are like, ok, that was sick, I gotta make sure I film that. I had maxed out the hip, going as big as I could, and I was like, I bet I can clear the hip and then ollie the cat track. That’ll work. I started to build a lip one day, but got busy coaching so I didn’t do it. The last day on hill I was like, I got this. This will be fine. I made a little flat pad on the landing and did it literally 5 times, landed where I wanted to, but kept getting scared and falling to the flat. But I was like, Mia (Lambson), if you get the camera out, I totally got this. She got the camera out, I got a little bit of extra camera boost, and just popped too much. You weigh risks when you’re snowboarding and I never even  saw that as a possibility.

What was recovery like?

Insane, I got mega lucky. I went into surgery the following morning at 6 am, and 24 hours after surgery I was walking up stairs and climbing stuff. I fully claim it as kind of the best case scenario for what happened. If I had broken a leg or done something to my knee, it would be six months in a knee brace or cast, but because I got metal in my back, a week and a half later I was riding my stationary bike every day for like an hour and a half. I couldn’t do anything with impact for three months – so no snowboarding or skateboarding – but I could still like walk and do anything else. I got in good shape, spent a lot of time with my family. It really kinda worked out, I hadn’t had a three month break from snowboarding ever. It was something I think maybe I needed.

Has it changed your approach to hitting jumps at all?

I wish. It’s crazy. Something about snowboarding and how much I’ve done it – day one I was hitting jumps. I still wanna hit jumps, I still wanna spin. Unless somebody brings it up or I do something funky, I never think about it.

You said you’re not one of the cool kids – what do you mean by that? Do you have to be in a certain crew to get shots in the session edits?

Everything has its cliques, ya know. So many of our filmers and riders are East Coast and they work together and ride together in the winter, and the filmers have watched their videos. Me being a contest kid, I’m in a different world. They know I’m a good rider, but they don’t know that I can produce something like that necessarily.

It’s definitely a team effort to get shots. There’s a lot of cohesiveness that goes into making it happen.

It really has been hard over the years with coaches trying to get shots. You have all the diggers and the counselors who, when they’re on the hill, they’re only riding. So not only have they warmed up all morning, but they’ve been hanging out with filmers, not campers and they can kinda shoot the shit. But for us, all morning I’m coaching kids and fully busy. Then after lunch I wanna get some clips they’re already over it or in their zone. We’ve had meetings about it – all the coaches are like, we never get any shots. That’s one of the reasons we’re here to is to help continue our career over the summer. We’re stoked to coach, but that’s another part of snowboarding, getting content and producing.

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Maybe Seth can get into the X Games for Sky surfing! Photo: Chad Otterstrom

You have to do it all now. Those video kids are going to have to start doing contests if they want careers!

I know! It’s so many clips, which is the reason why I made my own movie last year. I was like, ok, I’m not going to the Olympics, I’m kinda too old to try to learn the new crazy corks and all this stuff. How can I stay in this industry and have something to produce for? It was already December and it was too late to even get into a movie project. I didn’t have a budget and none of my sponsors were willing to drop ten grand to put me in a real movie. And I have a secret fear of doing the season edit drop online, because you work your ass off for that and then it’s like cool for a week and then there’s the next video. It’s like damn, that didn’t really carry over as much energy, effort and money that I put into this. So I was like, what can create more of an impact? I’ll make a movie. That’ll be easy.

Was it easy?

(laughs) No. It was so much effort, so much time, and that’s another blessing in disguise with my injury. I spent so much time working on that movie because of my back. If not I would have been at camp all summer and I definitely wouldn’t have had the time to make it what it was. It was pretty cool. I say I put myself through film school. It was about five grand out of my own pocket but I figured in order to get that much love in the video world, spending five grand towards equipment and travel was worth it.

Were you happy with how the movie came out?

Yeah, it was hard because I had to stop myself from riding sometimes and think about what would be more beneficial for the movie. There was that whole section with Gigi and Manuel at Stevens Pass, and those are homies and I would have had a really fun day riding with them and maybe get some photos, but I was like, you know what. Having them as a features in the movie will give my movie that much more credibility. I stayed with Bode and got to hit jumps with him. We’re homies, but I don’t know, if I hadn’t had the movie if I would have really been invited to take part in those.

The whole DIY approach is pretty hot in snowboarding – you kinda beat the trend!

I don’t know if I would go that far. I was sitting with Pat A at Copper Mountain, just shooting the shit over a beer after I fell in a Grand Prix qualifier, and I was like, what the hell am I gonna do? And he was like, just film yourself all winter. Your story is rad, you travel, you’re friends with all these different people and I was like, yeah, I could do that. Then I broke my scapula in early January and had two or three weeks off not snowboarding, so I put together a business plan. Like, let’s just see if this could even work. I have a business degree so I figured I’d see if I could put something together. I pitched it and Red Bull was like, yeah, we’re down, sounds like a cool project.

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One of the times Seth wasn’t spinning a million miles an hour. Photo: Chad Otterstrom

They helped you promote too, right? One of the things I’m noticing in snowboarding right now is that energy drinks can get huge numbers, and it feels good to get big numbers! But do you think that it’s the right audience?

Well, what I made that movie for was not the snowboard industry. I have elements with Bode and Scotty and big names in there that attract the snowboard world, but it’s really a story that all of us snowboarders know. But it was mega eye opening for my mom. When she saw it she was like, wow, it really is a drug! It was much more catered towards that audience and the TV mainstream world, more than just snowboarder world. I think the energy drink put it into that. Red Bull took such a crazy chance with me, so I have to utmost respect for them.

Red Bull does cool shit. You can be mad at energy drinks, but if it’s frivolous and awesome, Red Bull is the only one paying for it, it seems.

Exactly. It is that necessary evil. They have that money that the snowboard industry doesn’t have to help push it. I don’t know if you can really hate on em that much.

I don’t like energy drinks, but at the same time, Red Bull is a marketing agency that happens to fund itself by energy drinks, where as every other marketing agency is just trying to make money from the brands. It’s just a smarter business model.

The energy drink puts anything on a different level. For instance I’m coaching Chris Corning a little bit and he’s kinda stuck in the weird slump that I was. Good at riding, but doesn’t have the outlet to be a face of it or really be in it. He’s just kind of his own solo shredder doing his thing, and I helped get him on Monster. For me, that’s the bump that makes him a premium rider. Once you have that energy drink sponsor people kind of look at you differently. It’s such a weird game because it’s not a good thing. I would rather him not ride for Monster for sure, but if Monster will help, why not?

Having an energy drink sponsor says, “Hey, I can afford to go on a trip.” You have all these snowboard brands that can’t afford to send their riders on trips, or pay photo incentives, so they just go with it. But, if we don’t want to the industry to be funded by sugar water, what’s the answer? It’s almost like there’s a lack of creativity that just says, fuck it, we’ll have the energy drinks pay for. It’s hard.

That is true. It’s kind of the easy answer. At the end of the day, we do what we love, but if we can make some money doing it, why not?

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Not the brightest spot in the sky, but close. Photo: Chad Otterstom

And it’s expensive. How do you pay for your snowboard career if you’re not born with a silver spoon in your mouth or having the sponsors to pay for it? As things are evolving right now we’re in this dip that no snowboard brand is supporting that stuff.

It’s hard to even get paid by your own company now. Unless you have a salary, which you have to be at a certain level, everyone tries to do these incentive contracts and it’s like, how hard is it to see a logo in a backcountry photo? Maybe if it’s a fisheye street rail you can pull it off.

So you have to have logos showing to get your incentive check?

100 percent. My entire Smith contract is based around incentives. Unless I am on the podium at a contest, or I have photos published that you can see my stickers on my board. And it’s not just me standing there with my board, that won’t get published.

Do you get web incentives?

They’re starting to realize the worth in that, it’s something I’ve had to negotiate for sure, because it does more than a photo in a mag, at the end of the day.

Get the full movie on iTunes

A lot of people have a second job. Are you able to snowboard without another job?

I have been! This summer it’s changing. But thanks to Sims, basically, I have been. As soon as I was out of college they put me on a salary and I’ve been there since. I put a lot of respect to them for taking me in. Things are sort of changing now, but I think it’ll change for the better.

Change is inevitable. You can be mad about it or embrace it and make it work for you.

I’m not quite ready to get a job. I’ve lived this life for five years now, so I’m scared that once I take that other job, whether it be bartending or whatever, that I’m going to lose where I sit in the industry, which isn’t even really anywhere. But I’m scared that once I get a job that I won’t be able to do what I do now. You can’t just drop of the dime do whatever, go wherever. I totally take it for granted.

You are a coach at High Cascade, that’s kind of a job.

Yeah, this year I coached one session. I’ve kind transitioned into coaching adult campers, which is 100% different than kids camp. You’re kinda hanging out with your friends, but trying to tell them what to do. It’s like a bunch of kids that are my exact age snowboarding together. Basically all your friends that got 9 to 5 jobs and ride on the weekends just come ride for a whole week together. At kids camp I feel like I make a totally different impact on them. I get to build their fundamentals and how they’re learning, but adults are already set in their ways. So you’re not fixing it – you’re going to ride on your backfoot every time so what else can we do to make your snowboarding better? Kids are more adaptable. They haven’t learned or gained those bad habits yet. At the end of the day, you end up reaching both of them in a different way. I get emails from adult campers who are like, you made my whole year with that one week. Or they learned a backflip that they never would have tried if they hadn’t come to camp, so that part is really cool.

How have you seen the coaching experience change over the years?

Back when I was a camper, pretty much every person on hill, and it was a smaller industry, was a pro or in the industry or worked for this company, or was starting Airblaster. That was happening when you were at Hood. Something cool was happening. Now it just feels like camp’s gotten way bigger, there’s tons of industry and so many people that want to be up here now. Parents want to see what certifications the coaches have, and what level they coach at, and do they coach all winter? It doesn’t necessarily connect the same. Like you’re a really good coach and that’s good for teaching snowboarding, but I think it goes a lot further when you’re learning it from someone who has a place in the industry and then you can follow. It connects differently when you have a pro rider as your coach. Which is what it used to be.

Gabe Taylor was my coach when I was 16. I didn’t really know of him because I was only paying attention to contest stuff. But he was my coach and forever now, he’s been embedded in my mind. I watched him backside 180 over a big jump and from then on I was like, Gabe Taylor, pro snowboarder, done. I’m watching everything the guy does and I’m stoked on it. It’s kinda lost at Hood because there’s so many people now and you’re like, woah, that was cool, that was cool, that was cool and I don’t even know who any of those people are! Now even campers can hang too.

The whole pro snowboarder model has changed a lot. It used to be if you were pro you got a check, a travel budget, incentives, you got to be in the movies. But there were a lot less people. Now it’s democratized a lot, but what’s happened is everyone has to work at lot harder. And unless you’re Travis Rice or Shaun White, you’re working class. Not to say that it’s not still a dream life.

Yeah it’s still snowboarding! But that’s true. There were like 100 pro snowboarders in the whole world and you knew all of them because your only outlet was magazines and videos. In the fall you watched all the movies with all these Hood shots and you only had these many people to watch. Now there’s like 300 pro snowboarders in contests and 300 filming and you can’t even keep em all straight so you just find a few that you’re stoked on and that’s all that you watch. The team stuff is cool though. Something I’ve always been envious in snowboarding is like the Salomon team or the 32 team and these team videos. It’s a cool family. When I learned, snowboarding was this big family of people, and it’s gotten so spread out now that unless you’re part of one of those teams it’s really hard, you gotta stay on the hustle.

It seems like the animosity between the Mt. Hood camps has kinda subsided this summer. After spending a session up there, do you think it’s better or worse?

It’s awesome now. A – It’s awesome for High Cascade because now we get to skate Windells, and that place is insane. But I remember having kid campers three years ago, and a skier would get in their way and they would yell at em. I don’t know if it’s the industry as a whole, but I think camp helps as well. Now you’re just gonna be hanging out with skiers. Yeah, they ride differently than you, but you’re still on the snow and hitting the same exact features. With lap park we’re sharing the same facilities and everyone is just intermingling so I think if you were trying to be opposed to the skiing you don’t even have a place to do it now. It’s just made the whole vibe better. You used to be on the look out to see if Windells guys were coming to poach High Cascade and now I don’t even know, it could totally be someone from Windells and it doesn’t matter. It’s just like a big family now and that’s rad, because in general snowboarding is a big family.

What’s does the future hold for Seth Hill? You’re going to Woodward East to coach dry slope?

Yeah, that was a great opportunity. At this point it’s pretty clear that I’m just trying to hustle and get by and do as many cool things as I can. I was on a chairlift with Benji Farrow in Winter Park and he was like what are you doing this summer? I was like, I can’t do the coaching thing again for a full summer cause it takes your whole summer and I love it, but to write an email after riding with campers all day, or get focused on something, is impossible. So I was planning on just floating around. And he was like you should check out Woodward East. At first I was like, it’s a skate camp, but he told me they have a snowboard dry slope – here’s the guys contact and they always have guests. So I hit him up and they invited me. They have dry slope and some jelly boarding thing. So I am headed there tonight.

Well cool, sounds fun. Wanna end this with some props for your sponsors?

Sims is the only one really paying my bills, but Smith, and I just started working with Adidas and I’m pretty excited about that. Also, Love distribution which is based in Austria and I’m their first US guy, and Phunkshun Face Masks from Colorado.

Sun, fun and snowboarding. Photo: Matt Alberts

Facebook might be good for keeping in touch with people you never really cared about in the first place, but you really can’t deny the magic of the snowboard event for reconnecting you with old friends you actually want to see. That’s what happened at the Holy Oly, where I ran into Jason Speer, a friend from Baker and my college days at WWU. Jason happened to have a couch surfer by the name of Madison Ellsworth. “You should interview him for your site,” Jason told me, “ he’s an up and coming park rider and a pretty cool guy.” Being lazy, I told Jason, no, you should interview him for my site. To my surprise a few days later, he actually did. A few quick follow ups and thanks to the magic of REAL human interaction, here’s Hump Day with Madison Ellsworth.

Jason: How did you end up on my couch?

Madison: I’m on a long road trip to check out the Northwest. My first plan was to be staying in Whistler. I was up there for a few weeks and the weather would not give me a chance. I came down to Bellingham for a 686 shoot at Baker, and since then we have been getting a lot of stuff done and the weather has been awesome so I haven’t come up with a good reason to leave.

Jason: You’ve been hanging out in Whistler this winter, how’s your French coming along?

Madison: Whistler is English based so not a good place to practice French. I have gotten pretty good at Australian accents though.

Madison and his stunt doubles. Photo: Matt Alberts

Jason: Best thing you’ve done this season/in your life?

Madison: The best thing I’ve done this season is going on a road trip with no plans at all.. Just getting out of CO and adventuring!

Jason: Worst thing about this season?

Madison: Sitting in Whistler for 2 weeks and not being able to snowboard because of weather.

Jason: How did the Holy Oly go for you?

Madison: It went great. It was my first time being there and I decided to take the spectator route and cheer on my homies. They killed it!

Enjoying a wiener. Photo: Jason Speer

Jason: Who is the biggest pro that you ever beaten in a contest?

Madison: My favorite pro to ever see at a contest is Jamie Lynn at the Holy Oly. I don’t know the biggest pro I have ever beaten though. I beat David Gravette in a skate contest once. hah that’s my claim to fame.

Brooke: Do you actually like competing or is that just what you do when you grow up riding Breck?

Madison: I think it is a big part of growing up in Breck. I like to compete, but I would much rather just do all back country. It’s way more peaceful and less stressful.

Brooke: After riding at Breck, what is your take on the “park jumps” at other mountains? Does anywhere else you’ve been compare?

Madison: The jumps at Breck are definitely the best. They are consistently perfect and never really get icy. I think most mountains are starting to figure it out for shape, but have to deal with warmer weather and rain so they will never have the consistent soft snow that Breck has.

Who needs park jumps? Photo: Matt Alberts

Jason: What’s the last trick you learned? What’s the next trick you want to get?

Madison: backside trendeighty double cork was the last trick I learned, And I would like to learn a cab 9 double dip.

Brooke: People keep doing triple corks. How long do you think it will be before it will be expected and not a “twsnow.com exclusive” novelty? You planning on learning them?

Madison: Triple corks are lame I don’t ever want to do one and I don’t think that they will ever be a standard in contests. I hope not at least. That’s not snowboarding, that’s aerials

Brooke: Does it suck have a gender neutral name? Has anyone ever assumed you were a chick?

Madison: you tell me…. hahahah



King of the mountain! Photo: Matt Alberts

Brooke: Do you still live with your parents? Being a reasonably attractive man with snowboard skills, have you ever been forced to sneak babes in?

Madison: Well thank you… I lived in a house for a while with some buddies right in town so that was good for a while. When I moved back in with my parents I had a girlfriend so she was always over and they were cool with that. I’m freshly single now…

Brooke: What are the pros and cons of living with mom and dad?

Madison: Free rent and food is nice of course. They are hippies so they are just like any other roommates I would have in Breck haha.. they are really cool and know a lot so I love living with them, not really many cons to it actually. I would rather live a little closer to town though.

Brooke: How did your parents feel when you dropped out of dropped out of school? Did you get your GED or do you just plan to “get an industry job” when your done snowboarding?

Madison: They weren’t surprised. My school sucked and the teachers would have the option to fail me if I missed more than 20 days a semester and I was traveling a lot back then too, so the really mean teachers could just fail me. They didn’t really like me there either, so I was over it. I got my GED right when I dropped out. I’ll go to school someday too, I want to fly helicopters after snowboarding.

Brooke: How did you get on the YES program? What’s it like having legends like DCP, Romain and JP as your bosses?

Madison: I was introduced by Nic Drago to Joe Timlin who lives at DCP’s house in Vail. Joe went on word of mouth basically and got me in touch with DCP on the phone, They were looking for an am from the states to put on the team. I just had the right contacts and the right people backing me up so they chose me. It was a bit intimidating at first but once we went to El Salvador for the sales meeting and I got to know them better than I wasn’t as worried about it. They’re rad! I just knew I had to prove myself. If I wasn’t doing something right than I’m sure Romain would have something to say… haha

Boostin. Photo: Matt Alberts

Jason: I hear you’re moving to Hawaii, have you really thought that through?

Madison: Making last minute decisions seems to always work out for me so I won’t quite think that one through until its time too book the ticket. haha I would like it to happen though for sure it would be so sick!

Jason: Time to give shout outs to anyone you haven’t mentioned already.

Madison: Of course my parents and friends at home Love you! Drago is the man too! P mac for letting me crash at his house for three weeks and Dubs and Speer for putting up with Pat’s mistake haha. Mikee and Logan too for letting me crash on their floor for a few weeks in Whistler, wish we got to go out buds…

Sponsors:

YES. Snowboards, 686, Dragon, IFound, Breck, and Drop.