B/S 50-50






  One time Paul was visiting me in Sacramento and we were giving this girlfriend of mine a ride home.  She was talking about her how great her cats are, and Paul just yells from the backseat, “Dogs or frogs, never cats!”  What does that say about him, well I don’t really know.  I guess it means he’s not down with cats, which is cool with me because I’m not either.  But he ended up giving me some good advice that night, because after thinking about it, I ended it with that wack-ass cat lover faster than you can say “meowwww.”    

I’ve witnessed your bag of flat ground tricks in front of Pacific Drive so many times, what’s the one trick you can’t do?
Oh there’s plenty of those dude.

Name me one baby!
Hardflips.  I had ‘em, but I lost ‘em. 

That trick is overrated anyway.  What’s the best thing about the San Diego Skate Scene?
I’d have to say there weather, because good it’s year round.  We can go out and skate anytime we want, most places you can’t do that.  And its just home, that’s the other reason. 

What’s Your Favorite Place to Skate outside of San Diego?
Chicago, love it out there. It’s undiscovered.  Going to spots and not seeing anyone there was amazing.  Barcelona was fun, even though that sounds cliché’.  And the state of Washington.

Speaking of Chicago, I know you were out there staying at the Toebock House they had a few months back.  What was the best thing and what was the worst thing about living in that house?
The best thing was all the amenities.  It was like a really nice apartment, the nicest one I’ve ever been put up at, easily. It had everything.  The fridge was banging, and it even had a fireplace. 

I guess the worst thing was there were a few nights were I didn’t have a blanket!  I had to try and sleep with my jacket on!  It sucked because Chicago is a very strange place for weather, and the temperature can just drop.  It could be all warm and then all of a sudden it could be in the 40’s. 

How many times do you drink Starbucks in a day?

Well you know, I try to brew my own, I try to stay away because I’m definitely a “Baller On A Budget” and that shit can definitely eat into your wallet.  Luckily, my girlfriend works there so she hooks me up.  The most I ever did was three, when I was in college.  Now it’s like 4-5 times a week.  But I definitely drink coffee everyday.

Wait, what did you just say, something about being a budget baller or something?
Oh, “baller on a budget?”

Dude, that’s the raddest thing I’ve eve heard in my life.  I think we should use that as the title of the interview. 
(laughing) It would work!

Well I’m going to try keep banging these questions out, but this is going so good already.  You’re obviously not one of those dudes that gives two word answers. 
Yeah, ever in life! I feel bad, like, I’m talking to my sponsors and stuff, and I get all uncomfortable after awhile because I’m thinking, “Fuck, am I talking too much,” you know?   Even with Steve [Treboux], we’ll be going to shoot photos and I’m apologizing to him for talking too much. 

So what would you be doing if you weren’t a Baller on a Budget, trying to come up in skating?

Umm, I don’t know.  That’s really tough to answer, because when you got your mind focused on something, that’s all you think about, you just dedicate, so you’re not really thinking about what you would be doing otherwise.  I’d say if wasn’t skating I would probably get a master’s degree and just continue to learn and educate myself.

Maybe you should clarify, I’m not sure if everyone knows you have a college degree.
Well, I have a degree in Finance from San Diego State, and let me tell you, getting it was not fun.  But going to school taught me a lot about being mature, being well rounded, and knowing the world outside of skateboarding.  It’s not just skateboarding for me, ‘cause that’s not everything man, you know, there is a world out there!  But it was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, balancing skating and staying sponsored with going to school.  And since I always want to do my best, I wanted to get good grades, and Finance is one of the hardest subjects. 

You told me you’ve been working for a company that sets up expensive parties and concerts, did you do that Stone Temple Pilots one yet?
Yeah, I did it on Sunday. 

Did you see Scott Weiland shooting heroin backstage or anything?
No, I could care less about that dude.  I know people are super hyped on him.  I didn’t even see him.  But I did meet Jay Leno. He mistakenly thought we were the people that he needed to come up to.  So he was walking toward us and I just said, “What’s Up.” [laughter]. 

That’s it?
I was going to start talking to him, I was going to be like, “Dude, let’s take a picture or something,” but one of the head guys at Valley View Casino told him, “Naw Jay, you’re going the wrong way,” and pretty much pulled him away from us. 

Besides Dobstaff, who rips Poway Park the hardest?
I like to say Jamie Palmore, he just kind of quietly rips that place. 

You ever see Dobstaff around?
Yes I do. 

Oh Really?
Yeah, I see him at Poway [laughter].   And he’s looking buff as hell, still skating in tank tops, ripping. 

Has Cuong [Lieng, Osiris TM] told you any good stories from when he went to Europe?

He was telling me that the distributors in Russia were super funny and cool.  They would always come up to him and be like (Russian Accent), “Cuong, very small problem. Do we go to spot, were everything is good and skate, or do spot where it’s not so good.”  You know, the dude would say “small problem,” but in reality it’s a no brainer!

What’s your favorite Smiths/Morrissey song?
Oh that’s a good one, but let me tell you something, I was a fan before all this shit went down, people hella rocking Morrissey t-shirts, because my brother listen to that stuff when he was young.  I was always down with his voice.  Check this story out, these kids at Renette, of all places, a fucking park in El Cajon.  I’m wearing a Morrissey shirt, and they’re all like, “Is that Morrissey, Is That Morrissey?”  It’s like, how the fuck do you even know who that is? 

[Laughter] Well, he’s got a big Latino following here in the states I guess.  So what song is it?
“Half a Person”

That’s a great song.  So wait, what happened, you were wearing a Morrissey T-shirt at that park and all the kids came up to you and gave you props?
Yeah I was wearing the one that UNIV has…

Wait, wait, wait, you’re telling me UNIV has a Morrissey tee and you didn’t get me one?
No, I was gonna, but it was some limited edition run and I just slept on it! But, yeah they have a shirt with Morrissey’s head on it, and the kids at Renette Park are definitely recognizing it.  But one kid was clowning me, he was all, “What’s up dude, you just break up with your girlfriend or something?”  [Laughter]

You’ve been hanging with Adam Crew a lot, what are some of the funniest things you’ve heard come out of his mouth?

Let me just say, that guy’s a fucking genius man, he’s got it, really smart on the computer, just a real witty individual.  He’s one the one that came up with all the little slogans ‘Who tha Illa’ ‘Whatchu Thank.’  You know how he came up with the “Who Tha Illa?”  I might be wrong on this one.  Basically, we’re at the Toebock house in Seattle in ’06, and we had a party.  Some random dude was there running his mouth the whole night, and he was getting more and more obnoxious as more beers were drank, obviously.  Next thing you know, Adam was playing the guitar, this guy told him to shut up.  Adam was like, “naw dude, this is my place”.  The guy sucker punches Adam and so Adam hits him with the guitar and started beating the shit out of him, and as he’s punching the guy, he’s yelling, “Who tha Illa??? Who Tha Illa??”  [laughter]

Another term that’s great is Flowman.  I’m considered a flowman.  It kind of sucked at first, but now I’m accepting it.

Oh yeah, so its like saying “Man AM?”
No, its one step below Man AM!  [laughter] But it’s sick because all of his terminology, he uses them in reference to life.   Like if someone’s doing something that’s wack or just not right, or just so amateur, he’s like, “oh that dude’s such a fucking flowman!”   [Laughter]

I remember this one day in Chicago.  Some filmer hit up Adam and was like “You know how to get to that spot where so and so did that trick in the Osiris video?”  And after he got done talking to him, Adam turns around and goes, “Dude, that guy is such a fuckin’ flowman, he’s calling me for that spot!”  I was just laughing so hard. 


Its funny because I’ve kind of got people saying that out here in Sacramento, like my friends and girlfriends that don’t even skate, are all, “whatchu thank” when I roll up or something.
“Don’t Act Famous” That’s the best one because you can use it in a way when anyone’s acting too cool, he doesn’t even have to be a skater, just like “that fuckin’ dude is acting all famous, fuck that guy.”  [laughter]  That’s what’s up with Toebock, you know, I’m down for it for life.  We don’t act famous, we’re just down for the skating.   

What’s the number one thing that bothers you about skateboarding right now?

The fact that everyone needs to go out and try whatever they see in videos.  I understand you want to be influenced, but I just feel that a lot of people watch videos and they instantly try whatever’s in the videos.  And just the lack of people being themselves. always trying to follow a mold.  Yes we all need to find our niche, but it seems like people go to drastic measures.

Where do you see yourself in 2 years?
Still skating.  You know, if people still got my back! Basically I see myself finally being on companies, now that I got the time to dedicate, and I’m done with college.  I know everyone wants to play the age factor, but I’m seriously healthier and stronger now, and better on a skateboard now, then 2 or 3 years ago.  And just enjoying life, traveling a lot, that’s what I really want to do in these coming years.  

If I’m not skating, then it’s working, just growing as a person.  I read a lot.  I want to be constantly educating myself, and growing as human to become a better person everyday.  Why go through life angry, frustrated, and rude to people, I just don’t get it?  We all make mistakes, and I might even blow up at someone, but I don’t want that.  I would rather be hyped, here alive and breathing. 

Well I got like 50 minutes recorded here, let’s wrap it up.  Who do you want to thank that’s got your back?
Cuong Lieng, Mike Fitzgerald, my family, my lovely girlfriend Lola Smith, Danny Wallace, Ben Skrzypek, Charlie Castelluzzo, Adam Crew, all the Toebock homies, all my San Diego homies, Rogene, Steve Treboux for shooting all these photos, Blair Alley, Osiris, Ricta, Mob, Pacific Drive, Pete Piazza at Thunder, John Coulthard at Elwood, and Seamus at Zoo York for getting my back.  And I think that’s it.

Yeah I think you thanked everyone under the sun bro. 

Oh I forgot to tell you something that Cuong [Lieng] said about his trip to Europe. He’s like, “Paul.  Dude, Berlin, It’s like a big North Park!”   [laughter]