By Ryan Clements
A couple of weeks ago I took a quick trip to California to visit some friends and handle some business. The days of ASR and high-rise hotel rooms with a view of the bay in San Diego are long gone. So this trip we opted for a humble stay with long-time friend and OG Tampa local, Mike Derewenko, at his spot in Carlsbad, which happened to be right around the corner from where we needed to be anyway. Speaking of no ASR, Crossroads seemed to be alive and well. Thanks to Mike for the amazing hospitality and hosting services. Here are a few pics from the short adventure:
Starting off the year right with a First Class upgrade on Delta. It was dark when I snapped this photo on my Wednesday night flight to San Diego, so I had to use the flash. The other members of the First Class Club didn’t appreciate that.
Mike has this bird named Skittles. You should Facebook friend Skittles D when you get the chance. I was never into birds prior to getting to know Skittles, but he has his own little personality. Mike better learn to get along with him though, because the lifespan for macaws is about the same as a human’s.
First order of business: Meet up with Torey Pudwill and talk some business. He gave Heath and a tour of the new place first. If Torey ever empties that pool we can have Torey’s Pool Jam because that sucka is fully skateable.
T-Puds was generous enough to give us a board from that stack for Rob to use for a Digital Product Toss. Thanks Torey!
The next morning Mike gave me a tour of his workplace, Hunter Industries. I’m a big fan of organization.
I went over to Crossroards, which is hosted by Jamie Thomas and Black Box at their facility, and this dude’s messed up leg is one of the first things I saw. Gnar. By the way, have you seen “127 Hours” where the dude cuts off his arm? Watch that flick.
It’s always an honor to get to rap out with Mickey Reyes of DLX. Those guys have been doing the right thing over there for a long, long time.
On Friday night Jeff Pang treated us to dinner at some joint next to McGill’s Skate Shop. I think Justin Ryan wanted to give up his employment at Skatepark of Tampa and apply at McGill’s for a second, but then he decided to come home to Tampa.
Over at Hensley’s Flying Elephant Pub we ran into Freddy Gall and his crew of crazy-ass friends from New Jersey. Fred might be Lowcard’s Worst Skater of the Year, but he’s still the best dude out.
Saturday morning called for a quick session at the Transworld TF. That’s Brian Howard with a smith grind off the edge.
Mike Fitzgerald of Transworld extended his hospitality as well as this 5-0 to fakie over the deathbox. Thanks for the good times, Mike!
After the quick session, we got a tour of the Transworld offices. This is a classic pic of Jeff Pang and friends skating through the streets of NYC the day after 9/11.
Back over at Black Box we ran into Tampa Am 2010 winner Elijah Berle. He was like, “Finally, some people I know.” Haha. If he only knew how many people he’s going to know as he grows up in the skateboarding industry.
I was so stoked to run into my old buddy Lance Conklin. I’ve known Lance since about 1987 and used to skate with him way back then over at his place in Madeira Beach. Skateboarding truly leads to lifelong friendships.
Business going down: Cody from World trades cards with Justin from SPoT.