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Wednesday, 7 November 2007
Store credit?

A friend sent me this link.  You can watch the punishing first commericial or zoom ahead to the :53 second mark, where the Piranha Alley commerical starts.  Piranha Alley is the shop that I worked at for six years with Bill from Kzoo.  Those were good times and Bill gave me lots of artistic freedom to do projects like this.  This was produced in 1996, I believe.  The weird/offensive part about seeing this on YouTube is that the dude that posted it (not the person that sent it to me) is claiming total production of the commercial.  I filmed almost all of it, found the clips that were "borrowed", and "directed" the whole thing (not to mention the awful voice-over).  Another guy edited it, so I'm not sure what this dude is thinking.  I don't really care, it's pretty goofy anyway, but I get bummed about people taking credit for things they didn't do.  A couple points of interest.  The dummy that gets run over in the beginning was something I created at my dad's bike shop on a Sunday afternoon.  I set up my camera on a tripod and that is my Ford truck with me driving.  One-man show (kind of like I do everything, I guess).  That truck was awesome.  I did a lot of work on it myself and I really regret selling it.  tangent, sorry.   At the end of the commercial, where the dummy bursts into flames--that was a bad idea.   Again, by myself, out in the woods (behind Kzoo!), with a dummy and a can of gas.  Camera on tri-pod, a half-gallon of gas poured on the dummy.  Trying to light it with a cigeratte (I didn't smoke, not sure why I had cigs).  It took a really long time to light because I didn't want a match or anything obvious appearing in the shot.    When it did light, it basically exploded.  Fire was everywhere and I didn't have anything to put it out with.  I was next to a little creek, but I didn't have any way to get water to the fire.  The uncut video is ridiculous.  It goes on forever with this little bit of smoke from the cig and me trying to nudge it toward the dummy and then "boom", all at once.  After that, I'm running around trying to extinguish the fire, which took awhile.  Ridiculous.


 

       After the commercial aired, we got an angry call from a mother, complaining about the violent scenes.  Bill answered the phone and kind of non-chalantly handed it to me.    I wish I had a recording of that conversation, it was insane.  She was really mad, calling me "irresponsible" and all kinds of things.  I'm sure my side of the argument wasn't much better.  I get pretty defensive sometimes.  We had to deal with lots of angry parents.   One of my favorite clothing brands, Fuct, was something we sold at the store.  We were careful about who sold that stuff to. but a pair of jeans made their way home with a teen-aged kid.  His mom was washing them or something and noticed the small, round logo on the back pocket with the semi-profane brand name.  She was so pissed, like shaking as she talked to me.  I had to give her money back.  

 


 

 


Posted by Deliverance Dude at 1:13 PM EST
Updated: Wednesday, 7 November 2007 2:00 PM EST
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Monday, 5 November 2007
Media Overload
Now Playing: Jimi Hendrix: Can you see me?

Sometimes I lack photos and visuals for this site and that keeps me from posting, but that is not the case this time around....

First up, some more pics from Kzoo by Sean Newton:

CJ Vaughn, Skate Zoo enemy number one.  Actually, he works there.  Back tail on the mini with style.

Longtime local Josh Evans, tatted and ratty, going big over the hip.  The clock is ticking on the outdoor sessions for the year.  I'm bummed.

CJ again, method over Pizza The Hut.  This obstacle looks like the roof of a Pizza Hut restaurant and the name has somehow evolved into a Star Wars reference.  Don't ask.

    I got my Honda running a few weeks ago--I'm not sure why it took so long to get photos of it.



It runs good and sounds awesome with the shorty pipe.   Feels real good with the low bars, skinny tank and thin seat too.  This winter I hope to get it totally dialed in. 

    Yesterday, my buddy Jeff Venekamp came up from Indiana and we headed to Cannonsburg Ski area where the Michigan Mountain Bike Association has built a super cool set up.  I ran a pic of Todd Britton riding it last week and he met us there, along with Jeff Miller and Todd's sidekick Casey.  It was the first day I had felt well in awhile and the fresh air did me right. 

Here's Todd again.   This thing was more crazy than it looks.  The gap out to the landing is pretty far and you couldn't see it until you took off.  

This gap is gnarly.  You start out on a super skinny platform and have to cut a turn, right next to a little tree that is unnervingly close to your bars, then take a quick crank and launch off and down.  The first time was a little sketchy, but the gap was a blast.  Jeff took awhile to hit it, then made up for it by throwing down heavy styles like this plea for peace.  Jeff rules.  As soon as you landed from this gap, you had to hit the brakes to not over-shoot a long table with a short landing.  Todd and Casey both got worked first thing on that jump and the rest of us had a few scary ones as well.  From there, you hit a long step up double, a dropping turn, a sweet jump that dropped down into this berm...

...and then up a little hill, where the run ended.   Taking the whole run was super fun.  Very moto.   The big bikes are a little clunky and awkward in the air, but very stable and hauling ass on them is proper.  Jeff took the photos of Todd and I.  I took the one of Jeff.

     There was also a cross country mountain bike course there and lots of dudes in spandex wandered over to check out the "insane terrain".  A couple of them took their chances on the easiest of the obstacles and it was entertaining/horrifying to watch.  As Todd said "one more attempt away from a broken collarbone".  It was a kick ass sunday for old men on a mountain.  Fresh air cure indeed. 

    Todd brought me this present, framed and everything:

It's so cool to see photos that you don't remember or have never even seen from so long ago.  I'm number 9 in the middle.  This was taken at a national in Coal Canyon, California, in 1988.   I remember doing well in the motos and later choking, as I usually did at nationals.  A really cool thing that Todd brought to my attention is the scary looking long haired dude, sitting on the fence on the left in the pic.  That is Kevin McNeal, one of my early BMX heroes.  He was kind of an outlaw, gnarly dude that did his own thing, but he was cool to me when I asked him a million questions about gate starts and playing Asteroids and what size shoes he wore (yeah, I was that kid).   Shortly after he got the National Number One in 1980, he suffered a head injury and was never the same again.  At one point,  he was living in a box near a track somewhere, but this was taken before times got real bad for him, I think.  

   Halloween takes on a whole new meaning when you have kids and we had a blast.  Noah was into it!  

Later that night, I went up to Modern in Grand Rapids for the Habitat skateboards video premier and a fun skate session.  My long-time friend Jason Bosch was there and it was a treat to watch him skate the bowl.   Jason's lines defy any sort of regulations set forth by the number of wheels beneath him.   I filmed this video with my Canon Elph S200!

   I did ride my trails for a few minutes on Friday and it was good.  Hopefully I'll have another chance this year.  The weather definitely took a turn for the worse today and tomorrow it's supposed to snow! 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Posted by Deliverance Dude at 8:45 PM EST
Updated: Monday, 5 November 2007 9:41 PM EST
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Monday, 29 October 2007
the best parks....
Now Playing: Mogwai (on vinyl, dude)
   I did an Ohio loop last week and got to ride two of the best parks there are.   The Flow in Columbus and Rays in Cleveland.

Sorry I don't have better pics.  I took my little digi but forgot the charger and memory card.  Pro photographer.   The Flow is having their annual "Dirty East" contest this coming weekend and it should be pretty ridiculous.  Since I was there a few weeks ago, they have built this insane section on top of a series of decks in the middle of the park.  I know that doesn't make much sense and it took me a while to make sense of it when I was there.  Just trust me when I say it is good and some wild stuff is going to go down at that contest.

           Rays just opened back up for the season a week or so ago.  They built a bunch of new stuff, mostly in the mountain-bike areas, but there are some new rollers in one of the rhythm sections and some crazy new ramps in the "training zone" where the resi and foam pits are, including a super high sub-spine kinda deal and a spox.  If you don't know what a spox is, you never got to ride Focus in 05.  That park was fun too.

      I could tell I was getting sick before I got to Rays and I'm sure riding in that big old sorta cold, kinda drafty building didn't help.  I was in rough shape this weekend but I'm coming around now.   Riding my trails lately had me more in jumping mode at Rays and I couldn't get enough laps around the big loop and over the giant RedBull box.  It still took me a couple times to hit that thing at full pop, but it is hella fun.   Yeah, I said Hella.  

     I like riding by myself but it is a little scary when I'm so far from home.  I didn't really know anyone at Rays, except for Vince, who I met  by chance on a little street mission the last time I was in the Cleveland area, more specifically in Oberlin, Ohio.  Vince was hurt the first time I rode with him but he had his tech switched turned up to eleven at Rays.  It's cool seeing random people randomly.  

       Fall is definitely in effect here.  While the west coast was burning, the midwest can be a beautiful place.


Again, sorry for the low-res pics, but you get the idea.  We're coming up on the five year anniversary of Deliverance right about now.  I should do something to celebrate, like come out with some new shirts or something.....

   Here's a pic I found, shot on good old film by my friend Raymond Joseph Wolfgang Schleptweg at Magic Skatepark in Pennsylvannia.  This was also in 2002, right around the time I started dreaming up Deliverance.  Maybe it was on the drive home from Philadelphia that I thought it would be a good idea?  Long drives will do that to a person.  


 

 

 

 

 

 


Posted by Deliverance Dude at 10:36 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, 29 October 2007 10:55 PM EDT
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Tuesday, 23 October 2007
I saw a picture of you and that was the last I've seen of my heart
Now Playing: The Pretenders
Mike O'Bryan sent me a link to his Flick'R files and there are lots of FOD pics in there.   Peep some art and bikes and shit.

Posted by Deliverance Dude at 11:57 PM EDT
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High stakes
I did my Dew Tour research this time and got to see all of the events.  BMX vert was first and it was crazy.   The very first rider they showed was Dennis McCoy.  Making a big deal about him being 40 and how he still goes 150%, etc, then he KO's himself on a double-bar spin.  Dave Mirra was the pro announcer and obviously a good friend of Dennis'.  He's talking him up, then the close-up shows that the lights are out at DMC's house and Mirra's "Oh man" comment is the kind of bummer, honest statement that comes out when something terrible happens and you don't know what else to say.  Jumping ahead to dirt and Ryan Guettler knocks himself out on a double back flip.  Fast forward to skate vert and Shaun White knocks himself out during a warm-up run, not even during the contest.  Then there was the Stephen Murray tribute, which was very touching and inspiring, but one of the toughest things to watch.  Stakes are high, kids.  This is the bad thing about these TV contests.  Watching 1080s and double back flips and triple whips and everything else, these tricks become accepted as "standard".  A kid watching this thinks  he has to do these tricks if he wants to be good at BMX (or skateboarding or MX).  It's insanity.  It's dangerous.  I don't even know what to think.  You can't make people not do crazy stuff.   You can't tell them "Try to keep it under control, boys, we don't want the kids at home trying this stuff".   It's exciting to watch, but as a "lifer" I see it in a semi-negative light.  BMX park is my favorite event to watch, of course, but a lot of it is just gross.  Whipping your bike around as fast as you can scores points (and $$$ in this case) but it looks terrible.  Do I sound old and jaded?  Maybe, but I know good style when I see it.

(I also know a bad photo of a TV screen).  Jamie Bestwick is incredible.  I could watch him ride all day.   If you saw this contest you saw his outrageous crash when his crank arm broke off on the way up the wall of the vert ramp.  It was bad, but it could have been so much worse.  Jamie did a down-side whip to table and it was beautiful.    Diego Cannina (sp?) did a tabled 360 that was just glorious during his park run.  Dave Mirra was great to watch as well.  Is it weird that all my favorites didn't win the contest?  Jamie probably would have won without his cranks Flying off, but he took second (he won the title for the year though). 

      About as far away from the Dew Tour as you can get, I built some more jumps in my yard.   The new "warm-up" line will make it easier for first-timers to get acclimated to the set up.  It's good for me too.  I've finally jumped all the jumps, except for one, hard to get to set.  I also tore down my first jump.  These low-roller doubles were just destroying the rhythm and have now become a single roller, which gives you more speed out of a good pump.    

      FOD Turbo Todd Britton keeps trying to get me to go this Mountain Bike set up in Grand Rapids. 

It looks super fun and I'm going to try to get up there before the weather gets too bad.  Yeah Todd.

      Sean Newton sent me this artsy shot from the Dowagiac park.  I don't know who it is or when it was taken, but it's cool...

   I thought it was Levi, but I think that he is rolling on the deck in the background.  Damn blurry photos.   Just kidding, Sean, it's beautiful.

    My favorite part of working on bikes is building wheels.  Of all of my old bikes from the 70s, the wheels are the best part.  I think they are truly works of art.  I'm not claiming to be an artist, but the way a wheel is assembled by lacing spokes in a pattern is very traditional experience.  I love the way the finished product looks.

That's a ten-year old hub and a Rhyno-Lite rim, but I think it looks good.  I'm still holding onto the titanium spokes that Dave Davenport sent me a couple years ago, just alternating them with steelies now.    

      
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Deliverance Dude at 6:58 AM EDT
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Thursday, 18 October 2007
Trailer Park Rockers

I told you web video is the new video.  Tyler Deshaine put this beautiful piece regarding the Dowagiac jam.  He even used a TBIAPB song!  You'll really understand what the Dave Moon and White Lotus lines are all about now (as well as everyone else's).

          I think I'm a straight shooter.  I don't exaggerate much, nor do I embellish, except when it comes to schedules and/or travel times.  Driving home from Detroit tonight, my wife called and asked where I was "Galesburg", I said, as I was looking at a sign for exit 92.  Galesburg is exit 85, so I was embellishing a bit on my current whereabouts.  A bad, lifelong habit that goes back to strict parenting.  Anyway, I immediately began to regret my milemarker claim as I heard the newscaster on the TV in the background say "I repeat, a tornado will be entering the Galesburg area in six minutes".  I couldn't believe it.  Almost exactly my distance from said eye of the storm.   Three minutes later I was in the craziest monsoon I've ever driven through, going about 30 on the highway, looking at all the semis around me and pondering what it would be like to become airborne in a VW van.  The rain finally let up a little bit and just as I started to relax, I hit what had to be the equivelent of a small pond.  Nothing really happened, other than all the noise and sudden decelleration driving through deep water, but it scared the bejeezus out of me.   


Posted by Deliverance Dude at 11:24 PM EDT
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Trailer Park Rockers

I told you web video is the new video.  Tyler Deshaine put together this beautiful piece (updated) regarding the Dowagiac jam.  He even used a TBIAPB song!  You'll really understand what the Dave Moon and White Lotus lines are all about now (as well as everyone else's).

          I think I'm a straight shooter.  I don't exaggerate much, nor do I embellish, except when it comes to schedules and/or travel times.  Driving home from Detroit tonight, my wife called and asked where I was.  "Galesburg", I said, as I was looking at a sign for exit 92.  Galesburg is exit 85, so I was embellishing a bit on my current whereabouts.  A bad, lifelong habit that goes back to strict parenting.  Anyway, I immediately began to regret my milemarker claim as I heard the newscaster on the TV in the background say "I repeat, a tornado will be entering the Galesburg area in six minutes".  I couldn't believe it.  Almost exactly my distance from  eye of said storm. 

     The lightning show was non-stop.  Literally every few seconds more fireworks.  It was wild.   Three minutes later I was in the craziest monsoon I've ever driven through, going about 30 on the highway, looking at all the semis around me and pondering what it would be like to become airborne in a VW van.  The rain finally let up a little bit and just as I started to relax, I hit what had to be the equivelent of a small pond.  Nothing really happened, other than all the noise and sudden decelleration driving through deep water, but it scared the bejeezus out of me.    Lesson learned? 

Posted by Deliverance Dude at 11:24 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, 19 October 2007 10:56 AM EDT
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Wednesday, 17 October 2007
web video is the new video
Now Playing: Television: Marquee Moon

I love it.

  It's funny when dudes get pissed at their bikes and throw them.  I've never done it.
 


Posted by Deliverance Dude at 10:28 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 17 October 2007 10:30 PM EDT
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dirt bikes

Hanaan and Matt from Veteranbmx.com posted a bunch of sweet pics from the Dowagiac jam.  

Here are some FODs in action on MCs.  This is my old pal Jeff Venekamp kicking ass (at left) at the XR75 Nationals at Red Bud in Buchanan last weekend. He ended up a respectable 4th.

And here's Clint Baker, getting busy on his PW50.  Nice.


 

 

 


Posted by Deliverance Dude at 1:16 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 17 October 2007 1:32 PM EDT
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Monday, 15 October 2007
Joes Pizza

Joe's Pizza in Plainwell, Michigan is the best.  I love that place.  I remember when it opened.  I was probably 13 or 14.  It was a long ride there from where I lived but totally worth it.  Except for the time I crapped my pants after eating there and my friend having to ask his dad if he could borrow the car to give me a ride home.  "Well, why does Scott need to go home right now?"  20 questions from my friends super nerd dad (also a teacher at my school) while I stood there with poop in my jeans.  I haven't had any such incidents since moving back here this summer and we get Joe's a lot.   One time, when I was a little older, my dad heard from someone that dudes were selling weed at Joe's and he told me not to go there anymore.  He called it "dope", not weed.   I skipped a week but went back.  It was the first place I played a video game, I think.  I won't even tell you what game it was, it would make me seem even older than I really am.   I bet PJ posts a comment about this one. 

     I took Noah on the road with me last week and we had a good time.  It was a lot of time in the car (almost 1200 miles!), but with a little help from ELmo on Noah's DVD player, we made it through.  We stopped and took in the great outdoors a few times.

We stopped at almost this same spot on the way up and we were wearing tee shirts.  Three days later it was 30 degrees colder, but at least the sun was out.  The pic above is from the snowboard video premier we went to.  Noah handed out stickers and was stoked.

     Happy birthday to big time Deliverance supporter and sweet dude, Stephen Anthony Crandall.  You're not getting older, you're getting nicer.  Nice.  These pics are from a sweet nice trip last year.


I'm pretty sure Crandall's middle name isn't Anthony, but it has a nice ring to it.

    I've been working on trails here and they are getting better.  I think that big trail bike I built up is starting to crack, which is a bummer.  I worked out there tonight with the miner's light on, so we'll see tomorrow what I actually built.


 


 

   Sorry for the lackluster report on the Dowagiac jam.  The pics tell a nice story, but it should be noted that THe White Lotus did some good stuff and Dave Moon did some really good stuff, including the aforementioned ice-over, which was and still is ridiculous.  Jeremy Ball did a flair on one of the crazy quarters too.  It was a fun time and I'm really thankful to everyone that came out and especially to all the folks from the Detroit area for making the long trip.  I sold almost all the one-off tees I made too,  which is nice. 

Nice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Posted by Deliverance Dude at 11:36 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 16 October 2007 12:09 AM EDT
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