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 Bitter Cold Recap

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PostSubject: Bitter Cold Recap   Bitter Cold Recap EmptyThu Mar 04, 2010 1:52 am

Here is my summary of the weekend:


Meeting JC Rowe at Al Dolega's loft was an unexpected surprise. He has a great sense of humor and is very down to earth. Just ask the Columbian kid who got a free set of JCs wheels when JC saw the kid's wheels were worn down almost to the core.

Seeing Al's skate heaven loft in person was an immense pleasure. My jaw dropped as soon as I walked in the door and saw 2 small quarter pipes, two perfect grind boxes and the most immaculate practice rail ever created. Al's roommate Scott has his artwork all over the loft; on brick walls, hanging from pipes, painted on whitewashed plywood partitions that make up the walls of the rooms, crazy angular structures made from found and unlikely materials. Scott made staying at Al's on Friday night a great experience. Him and LJ had me cracking up all night.


I was driving from downtown Detroit, and I heard a commercial on Detroit's 89 X radio station that really moved me. Now, it was Modern's advertisement, but they talked about Bitter Cold Showdown for more than 20 seconds. It was very professional and actually sounded appealing. In 13 years of rollerblading, I have never heard any commercials about our sport. I think there were excerpts of the press release in the commercial: (NOT AUDIO)
It was a good way to start the day.

Me working the Be-Mag booth at the trade show (in red) fixing the message board. Notice the print copies of Balance on the table!
Bitter Cold Recap Vincetradeshow
Helping set up and work the Be-Mag booth for the trade show with Ben Murphy was a blast. Ryan Lowey (in blue) is a good salesman and helped me sell about $300 in merchandise in less than an hour and a half.

I brought single printed copies of Balance issues to display at the Be-Mag booth at the trade show, and those seemed to be very well received. I was surprised to have dozens of people ask if there were copies for sale. I went around and talked to several company owners and many flow, Am and Pro team riders about Balance, just spreading the word, and I was a bit floored when I would walk up and lay the issues down and people would say "Oh, you've taken it to print now?", without me even saying anything yet. I even got some positive feedback from Justin Eisinger and John Haynes at the One booth. Everyone who was at BCSD that has worked with or appeared in Balance was stoked to see their names and faces in print, and some were more than happy to sign their respective introduction pages: Chris Haffey, Chynna Weierstall, Jake Cawley, Stefan Brandow, and Avichai Wechsler.

Putting up the big white Xs on the ramps was a tough job this year, as opposed to the normal square printed graphics that were used for BCSD 8 and 9. My knee was pretty worked from running around on ramps only 7 weeks after knee surgery. Thanks again to Al for finishing up the rest.

The contest was amazing, I cheered until my throat was hoarse and applauded until my hands were stinging. I ran into Vince Zywczak and Sean Darst, and Sean had just hurt several of his fingers, one of them ripping wide open. He needed stitches. We got him patched up with some bandages and carefully placed and applied duct tape, and from what I heard he skated his run very well. Everybody killed it in the Pro finals. I actually left when the crowd rushed the course and hoisted Jon up in the air, knowing that he had won.

I got to Al's building for the Nimh premiere and only there, just before the start of the video, did I find out that Jon didn't win and that there was a bunch of booing. That was disappointing to hear. I could only imagine what Chris Haffey felt like, and he didn't deserve that reception to his winning. The judges had a hell of a job deciding who won and I wouldn't want their job in a million years, and I know that the booing was directed at them, but still...Chris had to have, at least initially, felt embarrassed by the crowd's reaction. That's not right, and the whole situation was something that I am very glad I didn't see and only had to hear about.

So, the premiere started off great. Jon Elliot was there, and Nick Wood and Damien Wilson were mingling with the crowd. We were only about 30-45 minutes into the after party when it got busted up. The cops rounded up the minors and kicked out almost everyone who was 21 and over. We couldn't leave immediately, and the cops were being borderline hostile. At least no one was searched, thank God. I'm relieved to hear that Jake Cawley has amazing skills at descending 4 floors of semi-frozen fire escapes with the steeze of a ninja.

I had the pleasure of meeting up with Blake Taylor and some Florida guys just outside of Al's building, and gave them a lift back up to the skate park area after they had shelled out $50 for a taxi to an event that abruptly stopped. We had to go somewhere, and since no one knew what was happening with the premiere, we went to BAR BAR and found the place packed to the brim.

I ended up crashing in the Rollerblade room at the Hampton thanks to Tim Schmidt, had the pleasure of meeting Kevin Dowling in person for the first time and got to see David Sizemore's section in Nemo's movie, with David. Tom Hyser now knows how bad my feet can stink (sorry Tom, at least I admitted to it and slept with my shoes on). Rog G is my hero, and he's got a fan for life.


Me, Kevin and Tim had breakfast at Bob Evan's while we waited for Al to wake up so I could get my suitcase and air mattress. Tim and Kevin got to have a mini-session on Al's grind box while I watched in jealousy and rubbed my knee to remind myself why I can't skate right now. I am convinced that Kevin Dowling is one of the coolest motherfuckers alive.
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PostSubject: Re: Bitter Cold Recap   Bitter Cold Recap EmptyThu Mar 04, 2010 2:00 am

low temperature parable, kinsman
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PostSubject: Re: Bitter Cold Recap   Bitter Cold Recap EmptyThu Mar 04, 2010 3:30 am

wow, sounds like a pretty fun weekend. I think I'll have to go up there next year!
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PostSubject: Re: Bitter Cold Recap   Bitter Cold Recap EmptyThu Mar 04, 2010 3:36 pm

I must say it was a pretty fun trip!
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