Interview: Merkle & Murf
Photo: Rob Murphy
Samuel Patterson, Sloppy Sam, Batter Boy, Henry Rollins Disco Baiter, Rainman, Shazam, Sketchy Scumbag. . .
When I was first told about a Sloppy Sam interview my first reaction was ‘it’s about fucking time’ then my second thought was how can we sum up this international man of mystery in one little ass interview. We’ll have to do one every issue, then again, probably not. Sloppy Sam is a rare individual, to say the least, and he possesses a unique way of looking at the world around him. It is this unique way of looking at things that carry over into his skating. This scumbag can fucking skate and he charges everything with power and speed. Sam is either a certified retard or pure genius. He graduated from Boston University with an English major which he puts to use quite often when he reads on his lunch breaks from landscaping. The gears are always turning in this guy’s head. I swear you can see smoke coming out of his ears as he’s waiting to drop in, contemplating man’s place in the universe. Sloppy Sam is a guy you have to get to know if you have several years and are willing to try. But make no mistake about it, whether he is imitating Jake Phelps or Hosoi he is definitely 100% Sloppy. They broke the mold when they made him.
So, how do you feel?
I feel great.
Why do you bring a book to the nudie bar?
Why, because I don’t stand there and drool over the skanky ass girls when the average girl is better looking on the street, then they try and hustle me for dollars and I can’t help but feel sorry for them? Last time I went, I put a blindfold on, when I had no money. I wasn’t seeing anything, it was all dark. I couldn’t see or hear anything.
You had to stick plugs up your nose but you didn’t have to pay anything?
Have you ever thought about bringing your pads in so your pads would smell good?
You think the nudie bar smells good in comparison to my pads? No, I like nudie bars, don’t get me wrong. but I’d much rather try and fail on the street and maybe get excited about holding a girls hand or nibbling on her ear.
When is the last time you nibbled on some ear?
I haven’t had one in a while. I usually use that one when I’m trying to lure the ladies, but I haven’t used that one in a while.
Does poor hygiene have anything to do with it?
Does poor hygiene have anything to do with me not nibbling on a girl’s ear?
No, I mean, I guess I didn’t explain myself clearly. I’m highly needing to nibble on a girl’s ear to turn her on to get it going further.
So, you’re already turned on and going. You don’t even need the foreplay?
Yeah, it’s been too easy, not enough friction in my love life.
Will you have sex with pretty much anything? Men, women, animals? Where do you draw the line?
Well, I really haven’t drawn the line yet. I’ve been going after females. One time a dude did hit on me and I didn’t like it.
If you could sleep with one male in the world who would it be?
Of course it would be Merk. He told me that like six years ago. He said I’m so good looking even I would want to fuck him.
When’s the last time you clipped your toenails?
I don’t, I have this girl chew on ‘em.
Well, that’s better than putting a $1 in a stripper’s g-string.
At least I’m getting something out of it.
Why didn’t you stay in California where you belong?
No friction. Not enough friction out there. Too easy.
What’s up with Jake Phelps?
Phelper? He’s from Boston. He went to school in Boston. That’s my theory. I was following Jake before I even knew who he was. Jake Phelps is literally a freak and that’s that. I’m just as much a freak as he is though.
What are you weighing in at?
Do you have to regulate your diet? You were 200 in California?
Skaters drink beer and skate. If you skate you skate the same way, if you can’t skate then you drink beer and it’s all done.
Who’s your favorite heaviest skater? Who’s the ultimate fattest skater?
There’s fat Shawn. He’s big, 240 and he’s doing 8 foot airs and stuff. Jaime Stapula, I don’t know what he weighs, but he’s as wide as he is tall! He’s a ball of thunder though. When he rolls in you can feel it. Force equals mass times acceleration. He’s got the mass and the acceleration.
A pound of feathers and a pound of rock fall from a tree. Which one hits the ground first?
Are we on the moon?
No, you’re on Earth. You’re on a tree branch six feet up in the air.
If we were on the moon, they’d both land at the same time, but since we are on the Earth, the weird weather patterns would cause the feathers to disperse. Now if Jaime was on top of the feathers. . .
Say if you and Jaime were in California, both in 1968 Plymouth Furies headed for the East Coast, which would hit first?
It would be you because you’d be trying to stop us at the Mississippi River and keep us from getting back to the East Coast driving your own Plymouth Fury. You’d be playing border patrol.
So, back in Connecticut, who were your idols? Tell me about Trash.
There’s a lot to tell. The Trash kid found some vert ramp along the side of the road and brought it home and cut it down to 6 ft and built it back up to the same size in a week. He built a five foot channel in a 16 ft wide ramp. A four ft wide 10ft high extension. He cut the whole thing down and put patio brick coping on it. Swingset coping he brought from Tim’s patio. Then there was a four ft wide invert, 8 ft wide with no flat bottom. More trash.
Who killed Bristol the most?
Chris Geitz has always been the one.
Did you ever blow lines with him and his dad on the top of the back of the vert ramp? Did you ever have sex with Bruna De Silva at the vert ramp?
There are people that have actually done it. Shawn Miller, Tom Boyle. She’d bang all the pros to get them to come to the park. That was her deal.
Tell us about college? What exactly was your major?
I was an English major.
And what are you doing now besides reading other people’s books?
Just reading other people’s books.
How is your book coming along?
I’m not writing a book.
What’s your job now?
I’m a landscaper.
You had to go to college for that?
Are you trying to put me down for going to college and then not getting the job that I didn’t want afterward as if just learning about the major ideas in life wasn’t enough. Like it’s all about financial gain?
That’s what society dictates right?
Some people might, but I don’t.
What did you get out of college?
I made an attempt to escape the ignorance that is plaguing America. . .When you see these stupid people on the streets with their chains and shit. . . I thought you were going to ask me about Jay Adams or something.
What do you think of Jay Adams?
Ask me what I think of Tony Alva.
Okay, what do you think of Tony Alva?
You guys were around when he was the best.
Are you saying he’s not the best anymore.
He hasn’t been the best for twenty years. He was the best two years in a row and he’s still milking it.
How many people can say that they did it and still do it?
Well, when I was in school, I was in the retard group for English. I was in the low English group and the way they taught you was so stupid. They didn’t teach you how to pronounce words. So, I wanted to be in the smart group, so eventually I told the teacher that I wanted to be in the smart English group and so she started making me do both the homework for the dumb group and the smart group. This was the first great accomplishment of my life. That was nineteen years ago and do you see me still milking it? You gotta let it go.
Are you saying Alva is milking it still?
Yes, which leads me to Jay Adams. He dropped out before he even got there.
So, what’s your opinion of Jay Adams? You think he’s cool because he got out before he got too big?
I think he was the original rebel skater. He was like fuck this bullshit. Fuck the TV and that shit. Some people followed him and some people followed Tony Alva.
So, there was a division? You either went the Jay Adams way or the T.A. way? How did Salba fit into the mix?
He’s incredible. He kind of dances the line.
What are the X Games, Alva World?
Yeah, that’s the world that Alva created. He’s responsible for the term extreme. T.A. is the original sell-out. I mean he was in a movie with Leif Garret. He was a rock star.
What you’re saying is Hosoi is just riding his coattails?
Yeah, I hear he makes his living hustling darts.
You’re known to skate like Hosoi, imitate Hosoi. You’ve even been in a home video full of Christian Hosoi paraphernalia dorkin it and your jacket says Holmes. Do you dig the guy or not dig the guy or what?
He’s fucking great. He’s the greatest skateboarder ever, I think. He’s done stuff that no one can do. He was doing head high airs in this backyard pool like it was nothing. He’s got all the lines and all the speed. It was like Peters would learn the latest trick and the trick was dated in six months or so, but the stuff that Hosoi did was always sick and timeless.
Who is your ultimate skateboard hero of all time?
I don’t want to say. He might read it or something. Claus Grabke.
What? You’re off the team. I thought you would have said Jason Jessee for sure.
I wouldn’t give that guy the satisfaction of being my favorite skateboarder. Let’s talk about Losi. Lein to tail.
Ollie to fakies, fakie ollie. The Smith grind was his. The dispute was just settled six or seven months ago between Losi and Mike Smith. I was talking to this kid that saw them in their hotel room wasted out of their mind on drugs arguing for seven hours about who did the first Smith grind and Losi was starting to win. Smith was doing the Smith stop but Losi did the first Smith grind. But Mike Smith said I’m keeping it, it’s named after me.
Why aren’t they called Losi grinds?
That’s what Losi is trying to get it to be called now.
We should start calling them Losi grinds from now on.
Mike Smith did admit privately to Losi that Losi did invent the Smith grind but he said to him ‘Don’t take it. I’ll give you one of the grabs. You can have the stalefish if you want.’
[laughing] Just don’t take the Smith grind. . . please whatever you do. Losi grinds just doesn’t roll off the tongue. What about Groholski rocks.
I thought Gator did it on street or Lucero?
What do you think about living in the same city with Fred Smith and never seeing him skate?
He never skated back then so why should I expect him to skate now. We see him occasionally. . .
I hear through the rumor mill that the Florida flower Jen O’Brien is pregnant with your baby. I heard that the child is not that Brazilian freaks but that it’s yours from during that All Girl Skate Jam at Skater Island.
Apparently it’s your kid.
Are you going to take responsibility?
How did she get pregnant with my child? Was I like jerking off in the bathroom and she sat on the toilet?
You left a little baby batter on the toilet seat and when she sat down to pee. So what are you going to do? Are you going to step up or what?
I’m ready to have a kid. Send ‘em here. My address is 119 Holt St. Send ‘em C.O.D., just cut holes in the top of the box and I’ll take him.
On Halloween, Sloppy Sam came as Jake Phelps. So here, Jake does a ollie over the gap to
lipslide on the extension.