Portland Oregon-Based Digital Media

nick

This past weekend I found myself in a twitter battle with the WWA’s Shawn Perry. At the first Toe Jam stop I had tweeted all the action, and the kids, as they say, were stoked.

diana_decastro@alliancewakesk8 wow twitter is amazing and u also. thanks for the updates! ;p

lakehippie@alliancewakesk8 I love the play by plays! I am at work but feel like I am right there with you!! Keep it up for us who can’t be there!!

So I wasn’t at all surprised that just two weeks later the practice had been adopted by others looking to enthrall wakeskating’s huge public. Unfortunately for me and my need to be first though, “others” included Shawn Perry, who happened to be judging the event. He claims his work required him to tweet, but I am pretty sure he just wanted to be like me and beat me to posting the results. Anyway, I become obsessed with beating him to the punch, so I started tweeting the results based on  my predictions, rather than the actual facts. And sure enough, I was wrong on more than one occasion.

I would correct myself via tweet and no harm was done, after all, it’s only wakeskating. But this morning this article was brought to my attention.

Irish student hoaxes world’s media with fake quote

Basically, as an experiment to see how fast information circles the globe, this guy posted a fake quote on a recently deceased composer’s wikipedia entry, which was then published by multiple media outlets in his obituary. I was like, oh my god, what lazy idiots, until I remembered, in the quest for speed, accuracy often gets thrown to the wayside, and I am as guilty as the next. We’ll add this one to the list reasons the Internet is ruining our lives. (Complete list or pros and cons coming soon.)

Sidenote: after the Toe Jam, I checked to see how many people we’re potentially seeing theWWA’s tweets. 29. So follow them, I almost feel bad.

The first night I arrived in lovely Orlando, Florida (Whether you are returning home, here on business, or visiting our world class attractions…) I went straight from the airport to BBQ Bar. Back before I developed my abhorrence towards bars and “going out” I really liked BBQ bar. It reminded me of college, and they always played good music. Now I just go there once per trip to Florida because I feel like a should. But as I was standing outside in the suffocating Orlando humidity, Yueng-Ling in my hand and surrounded with old friends I proclaimed that I wasn’t going to work so hard this trip. I was going to skate, relax, wakeskate for fun, and not stay up late updating websites.

Well, I failed miserably on that regard. Three days of trade show, with nights of editing photos and posting stuff to Alliance and Yobeat. Of course it was the week I was in charge of most of the Yobeat updates.  To make matters worse, the house I always stay at has a new, very loud roommate, who was sort of scary and cut down on my comfort level.

In the days between expo and the Toe Jam I tried to shoot as many photos as possible, since no budget makes it easier just to run my own photos, I figured I better take some. Instead of fun and mellow, this was tiring and hectic, although it did have its moments. And I’d say I got pretty lucky with some good shots. Bill told me at some point I could start calling it skill, but I like luck better.

After I was officially over it, the Toe Jam finals started. Three days of shooting photos, sun burns and fire ant bites. I got some good shots though, and its always good to hang with the riders, get the dirt, etc. Bill told me I could go down in history as the “mother of early wakeskating,” which is a scary, scary thought. Oh man, I was just told one of my internet haters thinks I use Alliance Wakeskate to “promote myself!” I guess he doesn’t know about this site.

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Anyway, enough wakeskating. In other work-related news, I had to take down my page of links to Futuresnowboarding.com, because it now just redirects to snowboard-mag.com and none of the links worked anymore. I searched to see if they’d just moved the content, but no, none of my hard work lives on the internet anymore. Too bad I only downloaded about 3 of those stories like I had intended to before that happened. Oh well.

In better news, I had a shot in the new issue of Alliance Wakeboard that I think is my favorite photo I’ve ever taken. So enjoy.

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I’m at the halfway mark on my trip to Orlando. Actually a little bit past it, but whatever. I’ve worked too much, slept too little and gotten a sunburn on my lower legs only. The first three days of my trip were spent milling about at surf expo, talking about the industry, pretending I care, etc. On Sunday, partially to avoid having to help break down the booth, and partially because I just wanted to get out of there, I spent at least three hours trying to leave. But I didn’t want to just leave alone, because then I knew I would not do anything useful. I was either going wakeskating, or going to shoot photos of wakeskating, and personally I didn’t care which one.

My new AWS intern had offered to take my riding, but as it turned out, her ski is unregistered and so we couldn’t go until after four. There was talk of a winch mission, but like any winch mission, varibles such as not having a winch, or a driver, etc., got in the way. About 30 minutes before the show I ended I finally headed off to some new spot with Ben, Dave and my new friend Justin. It begged for fisheye shots (and was backlit to shoot long lens anyway) so I got to try out of my new toys. It could have worked out better, if some tricks were actually landed, but I got a few cool shots.

ben Horan

During Expo I did my best to set up photo shoots for every day between then and Thursday when Toe Jam starts. Figured if I had to be here for the whole week, I better make it worth my while. Yesterday I went out to Lake Sheen, which is right next to all the theme parks, and was actually pretty awesome. The weather cooperated and the riders did as well. I got to play with another of my new toys, this time the water housing. Luckily it worked since I managed to get dumped off the tube not once, but twice. I got some really cool shots and I put up a little blog about it here.

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Today the plan was to go shoot with the “movie stars,” a.k.a Brian Grubb, who I am trying to give a feature interview too, and Chris Kallas, the new Aussie sensation who is getting an On Deck. But since we did so well yesterday, and there was more we wanted to shoot, Steve had asked me to come back out to Sheen in the morning. I figured why not and it’s a good thing I did, since Grubb and co. totally blew me off. I am sure they are busy, or whatever, but don’t they know who I think I am! Well, it worked out anyway cause I needed a little break and some time to geek out on the internet.

Tomorrow one more shoot with some riders who will cooperate, and then the Toe Jam madness starts. Sunday I go home and life makes sense again. I miss my kitties. Here are some sweet pictures Jared took of them.

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Oh I almost forgot! After however many visits, and countless jokes about it, Patrick and I finally ate at Red Lobster for dinner tonight.  I am excited about it anyway.

It’s always interesting too see how long it takes for the novelty to wear off of a new blog. Apparently for me it took abut 3 weeks. But I swear that’s not the reason I have been so sporadic on the updates. Actually I have been very busy building out the new Alliance Wakeskate site. Since it’s pretty much been a solo mission (except for some help making di cut stickers and Tshirts) it’s taken up most of my time. But it finally launched last night at midnight! The message boards are abuzz with excitement and I have that new-blog excitement again.

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Other than that, it was super nice for a day here. I took the opportunity to skate, but the realized what I really wanted to be doing was planting things in my garden. Does that make me lame? The next day I went to my first amateur wakeskate event. It made me appreciate the skill level of the pros, if nothing else. And I still don’t understand why it’s so much colder in Washington.

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More stuff has probably happened but I am keeping this one short because I have to get home and figure out how to pack all my stuff for a week and 40 Tshirts with the new baggage restrictions so I can go to Florida on tonight. Toe Jam this weekend, luckily the kids are pre-stoked on me thanks to the new site. They will totally give me the exclusive interview (and not just because I am the only person frm the media there!)

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I was doing so good with the blogging for awhile there. I guess I was busier, which generally leads to increased productivity. Not that I haven’t been busy. In fact I was on the road, so I had no free time. Of course my trip turned out to be less than productive, thanks to crummy weather, and some unmotivated riders. Actually, it inspired me to retire from snowboard photography. Well, I’m not going to entirely retire, but I think I’ll stick to trips where I am getting paid and mostly responsible for the story, not making medicore shredding look good. Reality is so much more subjective in written words.

Now I am back in Portland. It’s so nice to see flowers and green grass, although it’s a bit chilly and today it’s raining and the vegans downstairs are listening to Death Cab, which makes things even more depressing. I just booked a ticket for my first wake trip of the year though– Toe Jam in Orlando mid April.  Aside from working on my tan and being warm, the thing I am most excited about is I got a direct flight on Alaska Airlines from PDX to MCO. Seriously, the world makes sense again.

Memory Lane

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I am sorting through four years of old photos, trying to make galleries for this here site. In the process I have learned a few things, the main one being that I used to be really terrible at shooting wakeskating. I mean, we are back in the 10d days (I am now up to 40d) but the focus, composition, and other basic photographic elements were not really happening. (I was just informed that I still suck at taking photos, sometimes I just get lucky.)

The good news though, is that I have come across a few photos that make me smile and think of the “good old days.” (yeah, two years ago.) The snowboard photos don’t really have the same effect, but wakeskating has changed a lot in the last few years. Here are a few of my favorite old photos I’ve come across.

Kyle Walton

This is Kyle Walton. Back in the day he was a lot of fun. Now he is trying to change the world and has become a lot less fun. I just emailed him this photo with the message “I miss you.”

Young Guns

Here is a photo of Nick Taylor, Reed Hansen and some other kid. These days Nick and Reed are pretty much the top dogs in the sport, but in ’06 they were just trying to qualify. And look how cute they were, pre-puberty!

Boobs

One thing that hasn’t changed is Nick loves to grab my camera and take pictures. Back then Reed also was known to steal my camera, but now he has his own. Either way this photo was the result of that, I am thinking it was probably Nick because I imagine Reed was scared of boobs back then.