A skateboarding podcast videozine type thing
Founder type thing
‘There is however this other scene that’s not necessarily mutually exclusive form the proper Boston skate scene, and that tends to be more of a larger geographic circle in and around New England.’
Which Mongo Chatter episode stands out for you personally and why?
Episode 10 with Jeff Wheeler definitely stands out. Jeff is a well-known artist in the New England skate scene. I drove down to Providence from Boston to interview him in person in his studio. Previous to that, I had been doing a lot of zoom interviews from home with a lot of friends from my local skate scene, so it felt like a big step for me to literally step out of my comfort zone, travel a bit, and interview a reasonably prominent figure in a somewhat larger scene. Also, it was really sick because Jeff eventually did and has been doing a bunch of rad graphics and collaborations with and for us, so I guess in a way going down there to interview him helped plant the seed of bigger and better projects to come.
Tell us something about yourself.
I really like spicy food. I have a very high and unusually strong tolerance for hot food.
You mentioned earlier your background is in magazine publishing and editing. Tell me more.
I worked for my college newspaper and got interested in journalism. I started doing music reviews because I realized record companies would send me free cd’s and tickets to shows to go interview bands I liked. Pursuing the writing thing at my college newspaper in Burlington, Vermont led me to eventually link up with some dudes doing East Coast Snowboarding Magazine in Stowe, and I eventually became in charge of their music section. Through osmosis I picked up some things about magazine layout, advertising, deadlines, etc. I learned a lot from a guy called Shawn Richards, who eventually met a girl named Mary Fenton at a US Open. She happened to work for ESPN and they were looking for a core skater type who could write, so I eventually go a job at expn.com which was ESPN’s “action sports” hub. The really rad thing about this whole story is that Shawn and Mary, my former boss at expn, are still happily married, shredding, creating and raising a rad family out in the Pacific Northwest. It all came full circle with me and Mary and Shawn because somehow even after I left expn in NYC, we ended up living, working and skating together out in Seattle. I always say it’s a small world, and an even smaller skate world.
‘I’ve always really wanted to talk to some really misunderstood and perhaps notorious skaters. I reached out to Jereme Rogers. Haven’t heard back yet…’
Can you tell us something about Boston no one knows?
Boston is windier than Chicago.
How would you describe the Boston skateboard scene and its community?
There’s some pretty specific scenes based around Lynch skatepark and the nearby Eggs spot that truthfully I’m not really a part of. I really like to travel to different zones and skateparks and I, myself, am not big on localizing one spot for whatever reason. I get kind of antsy. There is however this other scene that’s not necessarily mutually exclusive form the proper Boston skate scene, and that tends to be more of a larger geographic circle in and around New England. There are plenty of travellers and lurkers weaving in and out of the Boston skate scene.
What are some of your local underground heroes?
Dave Begonis, Jon McParland, Paul O’ Hara, Noah Powell, and Taylor Spinney (Rest In Peace). Also, Tom Dupere and Pete Talbot are two standout legends. There are so many favorites. It’s like opening pandora’s box talking about your favorite skaters, because they kind of all are, you know? Paul Murray, Nolan Cormier, Timmy Coolidge, Ollie Dodge. There are a lot of others from around New England that are up and coming and destroying the local scene, and like I said, I’m not as hip to the Eggs? Lynch thing, but Will Mazzari and Bryce Grenier are two modern/current technicians that definitely stand out to me. Fuck I’m gonna leave out so many people. Fuckin everybody is my favorite skater, dude.
What are some of the challenges people in general face in Boston today?
Boston can be a kind of rough place. People tend to drink and fight. Hell, I’m talking to an Australian, so maybe you can relate. There’s also this other side of Boston where things are getting soft but in a really harsh way. The city is becoming very gentrified and homogenized and has lost a lot of its grit and soul in my opinion.
Anything left on you wish list?
I am pretty stoked right now. I have a good job and a good place to live and mongochatter seems to be going pretty well and keeping me busy. I’ve thought about getting a dog, but I’m kind of always on the go so maybe that would not be the move just yet.
Last question. If you could interview a person, who would it be and why?
I’ve always really wanted to talk to some really misunderstood and perhaps notorious skaters. I reached out to Jereme Rogers. Haven’t heard back yet…
‘Boston can be a kind of rough place. People tend to drink and fight. Hell, I’m talking to an Australian, so maybe you can relate.’