Ryan Carpenter, Corner Air on a Dare, Watsonville CA
A Game Plan a Lot lizard Would Love!
I honestly can’t complain, and I have a feeling you wouldn’t care to listen anyway. I am very blessed to work in the skate industry and would only trade my position for that of a world traveling pro skater. However, that doesn’t change the fact that I work my ass off during the week and feel the same stress as anyone in any other industry. You probably get the same sinking feeling while going through the paces at your job – “am i wasting my life? Should I be pursuing my real dreams?” No matter my lot in life, I’m pretty sure I feel the same way as a plumber, a preacher or a pimp. When the work week is over it’s time to make it happen and partake in the real activities you love. As laid out in the previous weeks “love fest” post these weekend sessions are all about getting the most you can out of the couple days you have to live after the work week is over. It’s the same every week, by Tuesday or Wednesday the group text is popping off with the same question, “whats up for the weekend? Where are we skating, who’s going and where are we partying afterwards?” It keeps the stoke alive and it’s crucial to keeping the work week at a tolerable level without going postal. Luckily for us Northern California is a region where you have the luxury of having too many choices to shred. However that can be a curse too, because there can be over extending issues due to the aforementioned anxiety inducing one or two days to pack everything in. Some weekends you want it all but only reach a partial plan…. and sometimes you overbook and reach the summit as is the case with this particular Saturday. We only had one day on this particular weekend that we could all meet up and after much debate we decided to get down in the groovy region of Santa Cruz. The itinerary went like this: the magical cement pond that is Buena was first, a trip to Derby second and then a final shred in the stoney mountain town of Ben Lomond. Usually a one day trip to Santa Cruz isn’t a big deal but when you receive the request to drive part of the crew all the way home to the crank capitol of the valley when the day is done, things get gnarly real quick. But what the hell, right? It’s the weekend and your with your boy’s! Just gear up to get down and don’t worry about the pain till it kick’s in later.
“these weekend sessions are all about getting the most you can out of the couple days you have to live after the work week is over”
There Was A Time When I Slapped Rock’s And Didn’t Wear Stance Socks.
Decking A Flapper Sometime Back In The Nineties
After the crew arrived, set up some new gear and praised jah it was time to head straight to the jagged lip of the well worn bowl known as The Buena Vista pool (or the fiesta bowl depending on who you talk to). Doesn’t really matter what you call it, the fact is, this place and it’s feline characteristics of 9 lives is one of the most legendary spots in skateboarding. Big Bad Bill of Bill’s Wheels fame has been skating this spot since 75′ and has some dope vintage photos at the shop to prove it. I personally have been making the pilgrimage to Buena since the late 80’s, with one crew or another and have had more than one funeral procession at this place. Filled with dirt, dug up, filled with dirt, dug up, filled with dirt, dug up……. You get it, this place won’t go away. I’ve seen some major shit go down at this spot over the years too, both skating and otherwise. From dudes like Andy Roy, Stevie Cab, Bobby Wass and a cornucopia of insane locals, the shredding at Buena has and still is top notch ripping. If you follow videos at all I’m sure you’ve seen this place plenty of times but one of the sickest things to go down here is the 5-0 over the stairs from Raven in the Pretty Sweet video- fucking balls! And even though the gnarlitude has been at an insane level over the years the “other” activities that have gone down here have been just as nuts. One night we came up on a seance led by half naked witches that scattered like rat’s when they spotted us – one of the craziest things I’ve ever witnessed. This spot has also been a popular meet up spot for naughty boys looking to hook up and I’ve seen major beat down’s, more than one overdose, fits of mental turmoil and have seen heads venture into to other dimensions more than once. Good times over long times to say the least! This particular skate session was no less badass than the rest either. After a pit stop for beers and dog portraits we landed at the spot and there a was full on session going down with Tahoe Vinnie and his crew. Full paparazzi blow out with about 6 filmers and 11 photographers shooting a insane nose grind from dude #1 and a lengthy lip slide that went from the deep into the shallow from dude #2. Not to be outdone our very own Meat Juice hucked a beautiful stale fish in the corner that was a spectacular feat of human accomplishment. Check the video after the article for visual stimuli of Meat’s move, then do yourself a favor and hit up this legendary spot cuz I believe its on its last leg…… again.
“One night we came up on a seance led by half naked witches that scattered like rat’s when they spotted us – one of the craziest things i’ve ever witnessed.”
It’s Pretty Obvious Hot Cheese Is On Performance Enhancing Drugs
A few beers and a few ollie's are always on call at Derby. So we headed over after a quick pit stop at Bill’s Wheels to check in with our main homey Ralph Mandeisel. Ralph’s one of the best road trip partners in existence and is definitely the best dude to have with you after being visited by aliens and stealing their bikes. Hadn’t seen homey in a while so we had to stop by for some laughs and the purchase of some fresh new Stance socks. After old times were revisited and new plans were made we took the back roads to Derby and experienced the colorfulness that Santa Cruz is. Hippies, hipsters, pissed of surfers, turd burglars, runaways, drug dealers and gutter punks are just a few different walks of life you’ll see when you cruise down the boulevards of Santa Cruz.
One thing’s for certain, every time you roll up to Derby , the locals will always shred this spot harder than you. Derby’s been around since 77″ right? Some of these loc's have such top shelf skills that it seems like they have been skating there since it was poured! Once the nostalgia wears off though you realize Derby is just Derby so after some clips we bounced to the groovy little town of Ben Lomond.
Hard to believe there is a park in Northern California that Ryan hasn’t been to, but this is one of the few parks Meaty hasn’t murdered yet, so we had to stop to cross it off his list. Just so happened Ben leezy was everybody’s cup of tea and this session turned out to be as fun as Buena. More clips were gathered, toes were broken and names were dropped. But the inevitable started creeping up like the first hint of a come down on a coke binge. You know the feeling, your still having fun but you know it’s about to come crashing down like a ton of bricks. The hard truth was that it had become time to pay the piper and head all the way to Modesto to drop the valley dudes off. The second portion off the 200+ mile trip was on, so with a overwhelming feeling of
depression creeping in we coffeed up and headed for Hell Town.
“Hippies, hipsters, pissed of surfers, turd burglars, runaways, drug dealers and gutter punks are just a few different walks of life you’ll see when you cruise down the boulevards of Santa Cruz .”
Then it happened! We got a call that a session was going down at an indoor mini in Modesto that most of us haven’t skated yet. The choice was clear and simple- hit a truck stop for even more coffee and sugary treats and create an unnatural second wind whether our bodies wanted it or not. As the dudes scarfed down heaps of gummy worms, cup’s of joe laced with flavored creams the car was once again bright eyed and bushy tailed. By the time we arrived at the ramp we were gassed out of our minds like a sped up lot lizard and ready to shred. Even with the intense Modesto heat and overwhelming aches and pains that were running through us, everyone skated like it was a fresh Thursday afternoon sesh. The whole crew fucking ripped- even Salty! There was some fresh unique lines and moves going down but with this being Ryan’s local ramp he had some mind bending trick’s that only a Meaty could pull off. It really was a super human feat that the skating was so on point after such a punk rock adventure. Alas it could only last so long though and the prolonged day started creeping up again as the second wind began to wear off. Once the slams started happening at a more frequent pace and the dudes started to look like they had ran a marathon, it was time to call it quits. Broken bones and shattered dreams were about to infect the whole crew so it was time to cap off the day proper like. The general consensus was that the only way to finish such a fun day is to hit the local bar and down a beer. Luckily yelp directed us right into one of the gnarliest dive bars I’ve ever been to and the wound licking commenced right away. While the bar was a little intimidating at first, due to it’s resemblance to the Twister and all the mean mugging that was being thrown our way from the wannabe bikers, we ended up fitting in just fine. No better way than burnt burgers and another Pabst to cap off a beautifully intense day right? Hot damn weekends with the 4wbs crew rule!
Yours (mostly) Truly
And Now For Some Short Attention Span Theater