Dustin Dollin

Dustin Dollin

DUSTIN DOLLIN
INTERVIEW by STEVE OLSON
PHOTO BY JOE HAMMEKE

Get Down
with yourself…
Get up,
don’t look back…
Dustin Dollin, RIPS.
PERIOD.

What’s your name, kid?
My name is Dustin James Dollin.

DJD! Where do you come from?
I come from a shit hole town called Katoomba, in the Blue Mountains, two hours west of Sydney, Australia. I lived in that house for 17 years, sharing a room with my brother. The room was probably no bigger than people’s bathrooms.

It was no bigger than a bathroom?
It was tiny. I could basically punch my brother from my bed. We were basically joined together at the hip for 17 years. We always fought every day.

Was your brother older or younger?
He’s two and a half years older, but he looks younger.

At one point, he was able to beat your ass and then that came to an end?
Well, I just disappeared. When I was 17, I came to America with $200 that I had saved for two years. I used to just jump on a train when I was 13. I’d just go to Queensland and stuff like that. I would always try to get out of that town.

When did you start skating?
I started skating when I was 11.

Why?
Everything else was too easy.

What was too easy?
BMX-ing. I tried to jump this gap and stabbed a big hole in my leg. I just needed something to do. I was so bored. I would ditch school and just skate. Skating is cool. I just wanted something to do. It was so boring where I grew up. I just liked skateboarding. I liked everything about it. I liked that it could get you in trouble. I couldn’t do graffiti. I wasn’t any good at that, so I just skated.

Who did you see skateboarding?
A lot of my friends skated. There were actually a lot of skaters in our town. I saw that movie Gleaming the Cube and I was like, “Damn! I want to be a skater.”

No. You did not.
[Laughs] Yeah. I did. I loved it.

Gleaming the Cube?
I could never afford to get a board or anything like that. I used to try to make my own boards out of tables that I would steal from school, but they’d always break really quickly.

How did you make the kick?
I would set bricks up and pour water on it until it bent. I’d warp it and then just drill holes in it.

Ride it and then snap it.
Yeah. [Laughs]

Before age 11, what would you do?
I used to love breaking into people’s houses and just looking at their stuff. I was just interested.

Was it the adrenaline of maybe getting caught?
Maybe. Yeah. I used to like to build stuff under my house. I would try to put motors on my BMX. I always tried to work with my hands.

Did your older brother help you do this?
No. My older brother is completely different from me. He was more into writing really small, and drawing pictures and making up space games. He was just drawing and inventing and playing Dungeons & Dragons and all that shit. He was more of a nerd. No one even knew we were brothers throughout high school.

Was it because he was a nerd?
Well, he wasn’t a nerd, really. I got him weed for the first time and all that. I was the one that would have parties at the house on week nights and invite a bunch of girls over. I used to have this scam where longnecks were $3 each. You get five girls that want two longnecks each and that’s $30 and you’d get a case of beer instead. I’d get the amount of two longnecks for me, and five drunk chicks.

Those are good odds.
Those were really good odds. I used to have chicks over and my mom would be like, “They’re not drunk are they?” I’d be like, “No. We’re all on acid, mum. Just go to bed.” She’d be like, “Oh, okay cool. Have a nice trip.”

[Laughs] Your mom was okay with that?
Yeah. She didn’t want us drinking, but she didn’t mind if I took acid or smoked weed.

Was your mom a hippie?
Yeah. She grew up as a hippie for sure. She’s got black and white photos of her in the streets. She used to sell weed in tampon boxes at King’s Cross.

I’ve never been to Australia, so I have no idea what Australia is about.
Well, Australia is just about being a pile.

Oh, really? [Laughs] That’s it?
Yeah. Seriously.

What do you mean a pile?
It’s because they have the dole. Everyone is on the dole and everyone goes and drinks every single day. Drinking is like the culture there. You go to the pub, go skate and then go back to the pub.

That doesn’t sound bad to me.
It’s great.

Drink, drink, skate, skate, drink, drink, drink, drink, drink… And then wake up and do it again?
Yeah.

When did you start drinking?
I started drinking when I was 13.

Do you have to have an ID to drink in Australia?
I would always have an older friend get it. That’s why I’d always get younger chicks that like to drink. I’d throw parties in this park called Kingsford Smith Park. I’d say to everyone at school, “There’s a party tonight at the park.” Then the cops would come and we’d all run off into the bushes. It was in this big valley, so we’d just run off. The cops would leave and everyone would come back.

It was like Dazed and Confused.
Yeah. It’s just like Dazed and Confused.

I had the same exact deal. It was just 30 years earlier. Why did you start skateboarding?
I liked it. I liked showing off. [Laughs]

[Laughs] Did you get chicks?
Nah. I wish it were like it is now. Skating is cool and you get chicks from it. I’d always hang out with chicks anyway, and try to be a nice guy.

So that’s your angle?
I always hung out with more chicks than guys when I was younger anyway.

Wait a minute. Gleaming the Cube is the movie that you saw that made you want to skateboard?
[Laughs] If you think about that movie, that’s messe up. These dudes hang his brother in a hotel room and then he gets revenge on them all by airing and hitting them in the head and shit.

I never saw that movie. So you’re skateboarding and you make your own boards. You’re doing it.
Actually, I hit this teacher with my skateboard at school because she wouldn’t let me skate. I wanted to skate all the time, especially at school because there was a set of eight and seven and banks there. They’d always say, “No skating in school!” I went against them and had a meeting and I actually made skateboarding a sport at school. They hired a bus to take us to the mini ramp that was half an hour away. One time the bus didn’t come and I was so pissed off that I went through school shouting, “Riot! Screw this school!” It was a bunch of young skaters and me. They didn’t suspend me for that, which was good. After I hit the teacher with my board, they put my board in the safe. It was the weekend of the Surf Dive ‘n’ Ski contest, the first big skate contest in Sydney with a street course.

What year was that?
It was ‘95. My mom went to the principal’s house on that Saturday morning and yelled at him and made him go all the way to the school to get my board out of the safe. He got it. Then I caught a train to that contest and I won it.

I love that story. Your mom sets up her son, and gets the board from the principal.
Yeah. It was on a weekend too. After the contest, this guy came up and said, “We’re starting this company Volcom in Australia.” I was like, “Yeah. Well, I don’t know shit.”

How old were you then?
I was 15. I was like, “Yeah, sick.” There was a bowl in Manly where Volcom was and I ended up staying with all these weird surfers. They’d bring home chicks and I would try to hook up with them. I owe everything to this guy J.C. He would take me to the bar with him like I was his son and give me money to play the poker machines and shit like that.

Who’s J.C.?
John Clapham. He’s the main dude at Volcom Australia. I skated for them for a while and won three more contests.

You were a kid holding down the amateur circuit?
Yeah. It was a lot easier back then, especially in Australia. It’s still a small situation. Then I got this offer to work on this movie. I had to high jump a dog and stand in for this kid. That was in Queensland, so I went to the skatepark in Newcastle, which is in between. They were like, “We might want you to play a stand in and do some stunts for this kid in this movie called The Real Macaw.” It was about pirate treasure and weird shit. So I go three hours to the skatepark and stayed at my friend’s house. They called me the next day and said, “We want you to fly to Queensland for six weeks.” I just had my backpack and I was like, “Yeah.” It was my first time on an airplane. They flew me on this little tiny plane and I was looking down and I could see the ocean. I had seen that Stephen King movie The Langoliers and I thought time had stopped because the waves weren’t moving. We were so high up that I couldn’t see them. I was so ignorant and just tripping. I got to Queensland and I went to the skate shop. The dude was like, “Where are you staying?” I was like, “Your house.” I ended up staying there for six weeks.

Were you getting paid to do the movie?
They gave me $450 a week and then $500 a day. That was the most money I’d seen. I blew it all on alcohol of course.

It happens.
That’s when I was 16. I got back to Sydney after that trip and Volcom was like, “We want to send you to the States.” I was like, “Cool. I’ll go.” So I got a passport and I went.

How did you end up at Skatopia with Remy?
Volcom. Skatopia is a trip. That was funny. That night I took mushrooms. I was probably 17 or 18. I woke up in the morning and there are these two parents sitting on the ground with this kid sitting in a chair, and they’re chanting to him. It was like Indian chanting, like “Oohaayaaoohaa.” I was just coming off this trip, and I didn’t know where I was. I was covered in dirt. I look up and they’re like, “Are you okay? You came here at some point in the morning and you’ve been sitting there for so long not saying anything.” I was like, “Yeah. I’m fine. I just don’t have a clue where I am.” They’re like, “You came from over there.” They pointed up and I saw the barn in the distance where the bowl was. I went up there and found my board and started rolling around. Then Bill Danforth comes in. It’s Bill Danforth and me at six o’clock in the morning skating together while I was coming down from this trip. [Laughs] It was so weird. How can you make that up?

[Laughs] That’s out of control. Someone told me, “Dustin did time at Skatopia.” I was like, “Oh, good.” I like Brewce Martin a lot.
I’ve done plenty of time there. The first time I was there I was so out of it. They told me I smashed a bottle in the bowl when everyone was sessioning. I had to get in there and sweep it up while everyone was shouting at me. The next night Brewce got me in the car, going full speed up the mountain. They set up stuff to make you scared when you’re high and shit. He shut me in the car with him and kicked out the window and started just freewheeling through the jungle. I’m like, “Oh my God!” We were smashing through all these trees and then I started noticing people with torches telling him where to go. I was like, “Okay. I’m not going to die in this thing tonight.” All that shit they do there is so fun.

It’s one of my favorite places to go. It’s lawless and beautiful. So you’re in the States as an amateur. How was that coming from Katoomba?
It was crazy. It was my second flight ever and I was by myself. When I flew to the States, I landed in Hawaii and I thought I was on the mainland. I was waiting in the airport for six hours for someone to pick me up. I didn’t know anyone to call. I didn’t have anyone’s number. I didn’t know anything that was going on. I didn’t even know Hawaii was a part of America, because I didn’t know anything about the world. The night before I flew there, I went to this Volcom/Oakley party in Australia and I got on stage. I freaked out and got so hammered. We all went back to J.C.’s house and his girlfriend gave me some lines of cocaine for the first time. I was just having the hugest anxiety attack when I got to Hawaii, and then nobody picked me up for six hours.

[Laughs] What did you do?
I just kept calling people in Australia, but the time difference was messed up. Eventually, the Volcom rep in Hawaii picked me up and took me up to the house. He let me drive his car to McDonald’s to get food. I was like, “Cool.” I was on the wrong side of the road at 17 learning how to drive. I don’t even think I had a license at that point. Later on, we picked up Remy, Alan Petersen, Bam and this guy named Brad that used to sell weed to Reynolds and the barrio crew. The way I got hooked up was, when I got back, Brad was like, “I want you to come over to Andrew’s house, but there’s this Australian kid staying there, Dave Tyson, who talks shit about you constantly. He says you’re a hillbilly and shit.” Even though I taught this kid how to skate basically, he just didn’t want me to come over there. Hayes told Greco and Andrew about me in Hawaii because we had so much fun. We took acid and went up to the volcano and had a blast. He’s like, “Jim Greco is going to love you. I have to get you over to the house.”

What happened?
Eventually, I made my way over there and Jim and Andrew loved me, and that other kid kind of got thrown away. They’re like, “Are you going to go to Tampa?” I was like, “What is Tampa?” So I went there and stayed with the Flip dudes, and I skated super drunk. Mickey Reyes comes up to me and says, “What do they call you?” I said, “They call me the devil’s spawn.” [Laughs] He’s like, “Really?” And he’s got a tattoo on his arm that says, “Beware of the demon child.” I ended up staying with the Anti-Hero guys instead of the Flip dudes after that. Then Jeremy Fox comes up and says, “So are you going to ride for Deluxe?” I was like, “What’s Deluxe?” He’s like, “It’s Anti-Hero and Spitfire.” I was like, “Yeah!” When I got back, I was staying at a surf house in Orange County. There was sand everywhere and I couldn’t leave. I didn’t know anybody, so I was stuck in this house everyday with sand everywhere. I was like, “This is disgusting.” Then Mickey sent me all these Spitfires. It was like 12 sets of wheels. I had never seen so many wheels in my life. I was playing with them and making pyramids and shit. I ended up having to sell half of them because I had no money. Then I get a call from Reynolds. He’s like, “Come back and stay at our house. Tyson is out of here.” So I ended up staying there.

Was that the Warner house?
No. Barrio was before Warner. I just ended up staying there all the time. Andrew was chill. Then he was like, “You should go up to S.F. because that’s where Deluxe is.” So I go up to S.F. and waited for Mickey for two hours at EMB. Then he picked me up and took me to a bar. Then he took me back to his house and he screwed some chick at his house with the bedroom door open. We got along like a house on fire after that.

So you rode for Spitfire, but not Antihero?
Yeah. I didn’t get on Anti-Hero. Julien thought I was too weird or something, so I rode for Stereo. That was right when Stereo was kind of getting whack. [Laughs]

Stereo was getting whack, but you’re on it, and you’re getting free shit.
Yeah. I was psyched. I stayed at Pastras’ house for a while, but when he went away I had a party there and a friend jumped through the window and smashed it. He kicked me out and I ended up going to Tampa Pro just to hang out. I met up with Gerwer and he said I could move into their house in S.F., so I lived in S.F. for a year.

I didn’t know you spent time in San Francisco. Then what happened?
Well, my visa seemed all good because they kept extending it and then I flew back to Australia, but I forgot to hand in my departure card, so I screwed myself completely. Then I went to Europe and my passport got stolen, so I didn’t have any records. Then I went to the visa interview and I lied. I said I only stayed for three months and they were like, “No. You didn’t. Come back when your story is straight.” I didn’t go back for four years. I just stayed in Australia. Those four years were when I filmed my best parts. I was the first one to make it in another country, without being in California.

What video were you filming for?
Baker 2G.

How did you get on Baker from Stereo?
Stereo went out of business and Andrew was making Baker Bootleg while I was there. That was a huge success. It was during the time of The Storm.

Tell me about The Storm.
The Storm was a video with mainly San Diego skaters where they’re all fresh and doing flippy, flip-in, flip-out tricks. It was all fresh bullshit skating. They were really serious and…

Jocky?
Yeah. We released Baker Bootleg at the same time, which was just completely gnarly good skating and anarchy.

Do you think the fun came across?
[Laughs] Definitely. The kids really ate it up. Everyone started dressing like punks because Jim and Ali were dressing like punks. That’s when skating changed back into the fashion we see today.

What about Ali [Boulala]?
We were friends. It was great. After I went back to Australia, Ali came out and visited me a couple times. He got deported before I left because he was crossing a road with an open container underage. He got put in jail for two weeks before he got sent back to Sweden.

So you got trapped in Australia for four years.
That’s when I did my best skating, by myself. No one was at my level back there, at that point. I was skating terrain that no one else was skating because I had seen what people do in the States. I ended up getting the last part in the Baker 2G video, and it just went from there.

What was your part like?
I wasn’t expecting to get last part, but I guess Andrew liked it. If Andrew likes it, you’re set.

What happened next?
Andrew quit Birdhouse to put all of us shitbag skaters on a new company called Baker. We started a revolution in a way. We started skating to be different. It was the way it was in the beginning, I think. It reset time in a way. I felt like it changed everything.

It changed a lot. I think it gave an option to kids that you don’t have to be a jock and you don’t have to be a hip hopper.
Yeah. You can’t afford that shit anyways to skate. How can you afford $300 pants? I couldn’t. I was way better off going to second-hand stores and buying black button ups.

[Laughs] That’s so much cheaper, and there are plenty of them.
Yeah. So that changed a lot.

Were you guys psyched on changing things?
Yeah. I loved it. I loved seeing kids punk again. It was awesome. Then emo came in, which sucked because everyone said I was emo, which I definitely wasn’t. I used to tell people that I invented emo because I came out with the first pair of red stretch pants. [Laughs] Emo sucks though. I was more goth at that time. I was going to goth fests and snorting speed for days.

And skating.
And skating. I had to go out skating at four in the morning. I’d get all drunk and call up the photographer and tell him to come to a spot after the bar.

Then you would throw down.
I like skating drunk.

Really? I can’t skate drunk.
I’ve done some of my best tricks drunk out of my mind.

I want to know about this. You like to skate drunk. Do you think it takes away the fear?
Yeah. Maybe. I don’t know. I can think of better tricks to do when I’m drunk. I can sit at the bar and be like, “Wait, I can probably go do that trick.” Then I’ll go try it.

I went to a NorCal contest a few years back and all the cats were skating, but there were three dudes throwing down, in my opinion. Whatever that means. To me, it means everything. It was you, Corey Duffel and Nesser. Everybody else was doing whatever they were doing, but you three cats were flying from the take off onto the rail.
I remember that day. I had just gotten off the first King of the Road with Volcom. I tried to help edit the video and I was so frantic from the tour and so hungover. I just knew that I had to set up a board and go to that contest because it was a best trick contest. I ended up going there with a bottle of Jaeger. I drank half of it and then I ended up going to the bathroom with Kingman and snorted three lines of cocaine. Then I went out there and did that trick and won $10,000.

You won it. Yeah. What about your mom? How psyched is she? She’s the same woman that went and got your board from your principal on a Saturday that started all this.
She’s psyched. For so long, she was like, “You should get a job.” I was like, “Mom, I’m making so much money right now it’s out of control.” I wish she would have just taken my money and put it away because I spent so much money. I spent $900,000 in three years on nothing.

[Laughs] I have to say you had fun.
Oh, yeah. I had plenty of fun. I was going to Barcelona after a tour and just staying at a nice hotel and getting drunk every day. I was just living and skating.

You can’t buy those stories, so you purchased some stories for the future.
[Laughs] Yeah. I remember my girlfriend flew over after I had been there for a month, just piling out. She flew over and this guy touched her up on the plane while she was asleep. It was messed up. I sent her home by herself and ended up going on some tour. I drove up to Switzerland with Arto. The night before that I went out in Barcelona and my girlfriend bought me a really tiny skateboard. I set it up with proper Indys and skated to the bar and then Arto won some weed. We met up with Dill and Dyrdek at the bar. They were like, “Have you ever tried absinthe?” I was like, “No. I’ll take some shots.” They wouldn’t take their shots, so I drank their shots too. I had three shots of absinthe after I’d been drinking for a while. I ended up skating off with a bottle in my hand and I slammed on the ground and cut my arm. I fell over and sliced my elbow and my finger. I was covered in blood with this little tiny skateboard. No taxis would pick me up to take me to the hospital. I was screaming like “AAAAAH!” I ended up skating all the way to the hospital. They had security holding me down while they were stitching me up because I was just so out of my mind. They thought I was on meth or something like that. They said, “You’ve got to take a piss test if you’re a professional athlete.” I was like, “No. I’m not a professional athlete. I was just kidding.” When I went to pay, all the cops were there because it’s a sketchy area where Moroccans get stabbed in the neck and shit all the time. Luckily, when I pulled out my credit card, it was in my right pocket because there was an ounce of weed in the other pocket so I would have gotten arrested. I ended up going to Switzerland and I tore my ACL when I got there. I think it was because I sent my girlfriend home alone. I should have gone back with her at that point. I was already such a mess. I just felt like, “I blew it.” And I hurt my knee.

Did you have to get the operation?
I’ve had six ACL reconstructions.

Did they put in old ones?
They took one from a dead person, but that didn’t work. It’s some new fiber now. It seems to be working. I just land to fakie.

[Laughs] Did you ever think you were going to be good, like a pro, when you were a kid?
I don’t know. I guess. Yeah. I was definitely learning at a fast rate compared to a lot of the other people that I skated with.

Was that because you were coordinated?
Maybe. I did gymnastics when I was a kid.

That gives you a mad advantage of balance. What do you mean gymnastics exactly?
I would always try to go to gyms and stuff. I could always walk on my hands and show off.

So you like to show off, in a good way.
I don’t know. Yeah. Now it’s weird. When your skill level gets better on a skateboard, it’s like you see shit in slow motion.

What do you mean?
You can see it differently than when you first start. It’s like when you go to pop a trick out to a handrail, you see it in slow motion, whether it’s going to be good or not. It’s like your mind and body are coordinating in a way. It’s like The Matrix.

[Laughs] We liked Morpheus.
[Laughs] I think that’s my brother’s cat’s name, Morpheus. He loved The Matrix. He started wearing big coats and shit.

Do you like your brother?
Yeah. I do. I love him.

Do you love your mom?
Yeah.

What happened to Pops?
He left when I was seven months old.

I don’t have respect for that.
Me either. My mom said, “Why do you want to go see your dad after he left you?” I’m like, “I don’t. I don’t want to have anything to do with him. You did the struggle. You dealt with the worst two brothers beating each other up and smashing the house to pieces all the time.”

What would you fight about with your brother?
Anything. He had a really bad temper and I’d just push it.

Like a little brother should. So you came back to the States after being in Australia for four years. Do you think your level of skating went up when you were in Australia?
Yeah. I do. I’d get so psyched when Americans would come over. I’d show everybody around. That’s how I got to know everyone in the industry. Whenever they’d come to Australia, I would be the tour guide. I knew everyone. By the time I got back, I knew every team because I would always show them around. I would take them out and get them drunk and go skate with them. It was good times.

What year was this?
I came here in ‘97. I went back to Australia in ‘99 and stayed there until 2005. I went to Europe though. My bag got stolen on my birthday the first day I got to England, and I had no money. I thought Transworld was paying for the trip, but I was hugely mistaken.

What about when you got your first picture in a magazine?
My first picture in Big Brother was when I was a kid. It said, “The feral kid from The Road Warrior.” I was psyched. Before I went to the States, I didn’t look at magazines and I tried not to watch videos. I was so into Anti-Hero. I did this trick at this famous place called the Pit in Sydney. I heel flipped into it. O’Meally came up to me and he was like, “Can I take a photo?” I was like, “No photographers.” The scene over there was so biased. It was the same people that were in the magazines, so I had to get out of there. I was like, “I don’t want to shoot for an Australian mag. I’m just going to wait.”

What do you think of the States now that you’ve come back and your game is to the next level?
Well, when I first got back, I still didn’t have a place to live. I brought my girlfriend and I was staying at Andrew’s. I called Beagle, and we went to the Hollywood 12 to do the kickflip crooks. I took Beagle into the Snake Pit and we had three beers each. It was the first time he went into a bar. Then we went to Hollywood and I got the kickflip crooks the first day. It was only my second day here. Everyone was like, “Wooo! Everyone loves you.”

And you don’t care, but you do care.
Yeah. I mean… Everyone has to push themselves.

It’s a natural human instinct.
It’s fun. When I first went to New York, Vans had posted up this billboard with a drawing of my face and it was everywhere. Keenan [Milton] had died and Harold [Hunter] had died, but they had both talked really good about me and so I got treated like a king there. I got a really good trick the first day that I got there. By the time I got to the bar, everyone had heard about it. Free drinks!

Word travels fast in the city. What was the trick?
It was this kickflip to wall ride in Brooklyn. It turned out well. It was sick that people could recognize tricks and not just the party guy. [Laughs]

You can do both well.
I like to party.

Yeah, and you like to skate.
I love skating.

What do you love more?
I like skating more. I like to party and skate at the same time if possible. When we go on tour in Australia, it’s straight to the beer store and then we’ll travel around to the skateparks. We’ll go to the skateparks with some beer. It mixes in there. It doesn’t do so well here. You can’t really drink at the public parks here. Over there you can take beers to the park. We smash bottles in the park because they clean it up every morning. We just get drunk. Australia is the freest country, but I have to be here now.

Why do you have to be here?
It’s just time. I’ve been avoiding it for like 10 years.

Why?
I don’t like to be caught up in the bullshit. There’s too much coke. It’s too accessible, all the drugs. People are kind of fakers and they just feed your ego. It’s gotten humongous.

If you can see past that, you can do fine.
Yeah. No. It’s great and all.

I meet a lot of fake people all over the place, but they do seem to really congregate here.
Now everyone is done with the drug binges. My crew, the Piss Drunx, are all settled down now. Everyone has their own place and their own car. All the kids I brought up are now pros. I like hanging out with them. There are all these skateparks and you don’t have to wear helmets anymore. I just felt like now is the right time to be in the States.

Have you always liked tranny?
Yeah. I started on tranny. I used to go to the mini ramp when no one else would. I would just catch the train to the mini ramp and skate by myself for hours. I learned so much from tranny. Tranny is the best thing for street skating.

It helps you do whatever it is that you’re going to do on the street.
It does. I always tell kids to skate tranny too. You’ll figure it out. Now kids can do everything. There are so many mini Cardiels out there. It’s crazy. Grant Taylor, David Gravette and Jake Duncombe can all skate everything.

Did you know Jake from over there?
No. I didn’t actually. He was younger. I was in the States when he was coming up out there. He got put on Volcom and I got to meet him and Shane Cross and all the kids that I hooked up from Volcom Australia out there. That’s rad. One of my favorite things is bringing up skaters. Andrew gave me a chance and now I love giving those kids a chance.

It seems that kids really appreciate someone going, “This is how it’s done.”
This next generation is really appreciative.

What do you plan to do with the future?
I don’t know. I’ve done everything I’ve felt like. I bought houses and renovated them. I got a music studio. Everything is set up in Australia.

What about in the States?
I’m just going to travel as much as possible. I love traveling. I like to meet new people and learn new shit and skate different spots. I don’t like going back to the same spot ever. I like to be spontaneous. I can’t plan tricks. It has to be spontaneous. It doesn’t work out if I have to go back, so I like going on tour and having my one chance at it.

Do you step up when it’s the one chance? Do you think it’s more pressure?
No. I like it when it’s something different. It has to be really particular these days. I don’t have the skill level of these kids, so I like being inventive. I’m just seeing something that they wouldn’t see.

You see it because you’re different than them. You’re goth.
[Laughs] Emo.

[Laughs] What music do you like?
I like Leonard Cohen, Nick Cave and hip hop. I like Biggie Smalls. I like all kinds of music.

Why Leonard Cohen?
I don’t know. You know what’s funny? I love another Christian Slater movie, Pump Up the Volume. His radio show theme song is Leonard Cohen’s “Everybody Knows” song. I loved it from then on. My mom had a Leonard Cohen tape and I’d always listen to it. I think he’s the most intelligent songwriter. You feel like a lot of it relates to you.

Do you think skateboarding has a new place in modern society?
Yeah. It does. It’s like Tony Hawk said, “Look at the skateparks compared to the baseball fields. Which one is more crowded? It’s the skateparks.”

I see a lot of empty basketball courts and baseball fields, but I don’t see many empty skateparks.
Yeah. It’s lucky. Sticking with it for so long has been a great thing.

So you’re in your thirties now.
[Laughs] Yeah.

Now it’s on.
Yeah. That’s what it means. It’s time.

You can start living.
Yeah. I’m living it exactly how I want to right now.

FOR THE REST OF THE STORY, ORDER ISSUE #73 AT THE JUICE SHOP…

Dustin Dollin

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