Monday, February 28, 2011
Photos: Lauren Cooper
So the other day I showed a friend our most recent Bolts of Thunder Gone Wild trailer of Dan Shaw. You know which one I'm talking about because you have feelings for this trailer, don't you? So when it was over she said, "you guys take this way too far..." I don't know what she meant by that comment, but it really made me happy. That's right people, we're taking things way further than anyone is dreaming. Not true actually, but we're taking things further than I've seen anyone go in a long time. And we might lose a few of you along the way. That's right, some of you might lack the internal strength to understand and accept Bolts of Thunder's direction. Some of you might be hoping for more HD panning on my dolly footage, ride up shots, 4 trick combos on ledges, and fast motion cars driving through the city at night. But that's not where we're going because that's not going anywhere. If I can give you my honest opinion, which I'm going to whether you want it or not, all this artsy stuff was successfully pulled off by a few people in a few videos, it worked at the time, and now every kid is trying to recreate that. And that's just fine. But that's not how every single skate video has to look. You can do other things. But what we get instead is everyone thinking that's the only way to make a video these days, so you get a million different videos coming out that look the exact same. Well here at Bolts of Thunder, we're anything but your average skate crew. We should be a bowling crew, or some sport with less impact on our joints. But we're sticking with it because we have fun with it. And being such an odd group of skaters, we've decided to take a less conventional approach to our video making, and we're making the video that we want to make. Not what everyone else is making. And if we're going to make it what we want, we're going all out with it too. The image above is but a small taste of where we're going with our next video and what you should anticipate. So for those of you who disapprove of flames shooting out of a scooter, Matt growing his hair out long, or me showing off my legs, or you simply can't hack it as a Thunder Bolt (devout allies loyal to Bolts of Thunder),you should abandon ship now because we're going much further than this. We're going too far, if that's even possible.
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
This is our ditch, of which I am extremely proud. Maybe it's like a mother that loves her ugly baby even when everyone else agrees the baby is ugly. It could be like that. Dave and I spent hundreds of dollars and a lot of time last summer repairing and creating skate spots, this one being the poster child of them all. Neither of us had ever done cement work, but that didn't stop or discourage us from buying $250 worth of cement and just going for it. By the end, we kind of figured out what we were doing, and the section that we did last is the only smooth part of the cement. That's the part I ride on. But all in all, the roughness of the spot makes it fun to skate, and you feel good even if you do a little grind on it. Or even just pumping back and forth is an accomplishment. But as soon as we finished it, word got out it was here and kids started riding it and busting up our cement job. What can you expect from skater kids? But then someone had the great idea to spray paint a purple robot and an eye in the ditch, both of which suck really bad. That's right mister tagger, I'm calling you out! Your work sucks! You and us, 5:00, at the flag pole behind the middle school, or the abandoned house on vineyard ave, your call! But we'll be there, and we're coming out swinging! So Dan and Nick were the ones that really embraced the power of the ditch, and they could pull of maneuvers that nobody else dared or cared to try, like 360 body twirls and crazy stuff. Oh yeah, funny story, this one time we were here and a cop pulled up behind my car parked on the road. Dave and I had told Dan that we wouldn't let him fall into the law's hands in case a cop came (we didn't think a cop would come), so when we saw the cop, we told Dan to high tail it while we smoothed things over with the cop. The first thing that came to my mind was how Martin Sheen lets Leo go on The Departed when the mob surrounds them in the building, and Martin Sheen thinks he can smooth things out with the mob, but they just throw him off the roof. I kept thinking that as Dan was fleeing the scene, he'd hear gunshots and come back to find our dead bodies int he ditch. But even with our very lives on the line, Dave and I held our ground in that ditch. We're loyal like that. Anyway, the cop didn't care at all, he even gave us permission to skate there whenever we wanted, so I called Dan, who was running up a hill, and told him to come back out of breath. All in a day's fun...
Monday, February 21, 2011
Here's a taste of the wrath that will be poured upon the heathen nations! A steaming hot cup of blunt, filled to the brim and overflowing with frontside airs. No hands, might I add. "When I came home, there was a man in my halfpipe! I fought with this man! He had a mechanical wrist! You find this man!" Look no further, he is here before you in all his glory... Nick Edwards, aka, the one wristed man. He's innocent until proven guilty, and by the looks of these airs and blunts, you've got nothing on him...
Weston Colton took these pictures. Don't believe me? Ask him!
Sunday, February 20, 2011
Admit it, you've all been waiting for this trailer for a long time. And now that it's here, you're secretly very excited. You won't even tell your friends how excited you are. But you don't even need to, they're just as excited as you are... So Dan's been busy taking his shirt off and flying through the air for the up and coming "Bolts of Thunder Gone Wild" video. Be excited. Very excited.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
This time not Bolts of Thunder directly, but an ally and close affiliate of Bolts of Thunder, Garrett Taylor, has infiltrated the Transworld webpage. He filmed a contest in Vegas, edited it, and they put it up on the Transworld site (applaud here)! This is exciting news as we're getting our big, ugly feet into the skate world door, and letting all the cold air into the house. Word on the street is that Garrett might be filming a part for the up and coming Bolts of Thunder Gone Wild video, which is exciting news for all you Garrett Taylor fans out there. Bolts of Thunder is strongly pushing for this... Here's a link to Garrett's video that he put together:
We're all relieved and glad to see that Matt has found his filming groove. With hand on hip and lens blower in back pocket, Matt is strategically placed and prepared to film nearly all skating maneuvers. Now you're all asking yourselves questions, as you should be, such as, "Hasn't Matt always has his filming groove? How did he lose it? Did he ever lose it?" Well, not that Matt ever lost it, but we'll just say he put it on hold for a while. You see, after the filming of our first video, stress levels where a little high, and Matt took a "mountain retreat" in the jungles of Cambodia. Turned out that Matt gathered quite a following while he was living in the ruins of ancient temple grounds. Matt read poetry and philosophized all day to his followers. Command back at home wasn't too happy with Matt's disappearance and sent one of our crew out to bring Matt back home. After he didn't return, Command sent me out to find my brother and bring him back. When I found Matt, he had lost all touch with time and reason as reading too much philosophy had turned his brain to scrambled eggs (philosophy will do that to you kids, stay away from it!). As I approached Matt, hidden in the shadows of his temple, I heard his deep, shrill voice ask me:
"Are you an assassin, sent to kill me?"
"...I'm a skater."
Wiping his bald head with a cool, wet rag, Matt confidently responded, "You're a grocery boy sent on an errand by store clerks to collect a bill."
After serving up Matt some Jim Morrison machete treatment, Matt changed his mind and decided to come back home. Now that he's here, we're back in full action filming for the up and coming "Bolts of Thunder Gone Wild" video...
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
With so much trouble in the world today, Bolts of Thunder seems to be the only place you can turn to for refuge. We keep you warm and safe at night. But in order to do so, we must sacrifice our own well-being, put ourselves on the front line to protect our homeland. Here I am preemptively striking a huge grass hill armed with no more than an old school board, a railing, and a love for Bolts of Thunder's allies to support me. But I will strike, make no mistake about that. And with the odds stacked up against me, it will be a good fight...
Monday, February 14, 2011
"You just ate an unarmed cookie!" yelled Gene Hackman.
"Then he shouldn't be decorating himself with my M&Ms!" replied Dan Eastwood.
(excerpts from my newest screenplay)
Dan's got one of the meanest snarls I've ever seen. It would scare the Grinch. He's being cast in Clint Eastwood's newest film "Unforgotten" about the unrepentant cookie thief that goes for the big one but realizes he doesn't like eating cookies anymore. Symbolic of something? Oh yeah, you'd better believe it. We're not quite sure what it's symbolic of, but those cookies could be overflowing with symbolism for things like capitalism and post-pardum depression. Dan's a natural for this role though, as he loves his cookies...
Saturday, February 12, 2011
This is Bolts of Thunder putting your tax dollars to work. So me and Nick were trying to skate this flat bar the other day, and the runway was quite dirty, impairing our ability to skate. I was just going to clean the spot the old fashioned way by sweeping my foot across the ground for 10 minutes, kicking away rocks and dust. Then Nick realized that we were next to a huge car vacuum, and that would clean the spot much faster and better. Reaching into his pocket, Nick pulled out 2 quarters that just happened to be there. Who caries around quarters these days? So we used the money and put it to good work, vacuuming up the parking log so we could skate. Then we got kicked out a few minutes later. I don't think the people appreciate how clean their parking lot is now. The next pictures are Dan and Matt at the Eagle Mountain skate park. There was ice and snow in the halfpipe, so we got shovels, wood, and towels out to clean the spot. 2 weeks of sun couldn't do what we did in 15 minutes with those towels, wood, and shovels. When I say "we", I really mean Nick, Matt, and Dan. I didn't actually do any physical work, I just took pictures and said that that was more supportive than doing manuel labor... We didn't get kicked out of the skatepark, and Dan did what he does best: took off his shirt. Shirtless in February? Shirtless... Like the Dan child was. Then he did what he does second best: huge ramp launches. Innovation...
So the other day I was skating my pink flat bar with Nick. Yes, my flat bar is pink. I did not color it that color, I don't necessarily like the color, but I have no intention of changing the color. It stays as it is. So I was trying to nollie noseblunt my rail and remembered that 7 years ago Garrett Taylor nollie noseblunted a handrail. Yeah, a 5 stair handrail. Don't believe me? Watch his part from the Lip Trix video "Gnarred for Life", it's his last trick.
"Nollie Noseblunt?" you
"Yeah, nollie noseblunt," me
"Yeah, serious," me
"For real?" you
"Dude... Yes, I'm serious, just watch his part and you'll see," me
"...nollie noseblunt?" you
This conversation is going nowhere, you obviously don't believe me. That's why you should watch the video. And that's Yoda at the beginning of Garrett's part, we hired him to do a cameo for our video. So when Garrett landed the nollie noseblunt, Garrett, Matt, and I were on a trip down in California. Months earlier Garrett had tried the nollie noseblunt (I'll just abbreviate it into NN from now on) for over an hour, but couldn't get it. Dusty Reese was chilling there, and I was pretending to know how to film it. I had no idea what I was doing... Garrett went back home to St. George in defeat, but almost a year later, he came back and was taking no prisoners this time. We went to the rail, skated it for a minute, then Garrett went right into the NN. I was filming with my brand new baby fisheye deathlens that had come in the mail about 20 minutes before we left (thanks Brian for buying that for me), and the lense didn't fit on my camera. We had searched every camera store for an adapter ring, but nobody had it. So I ended up just holding the lens up to the camera and tried not to shake. It worked. So I was sitting on the stairs filming, Garrett was going for his trick and getting into almost every try, then all of a sudden he just rode away. Just like that. Pop, slide, roll away. I couldn't believe it, and I don't think Garrett could either. It was so clean. He had never even landed the trick on anything I don't think, he just went for it right there. Right when he rolled away, the first thing that went through my mind was, "oh crap, did I even film that one?..." I prayed that I had, and it turned out that I did film it, and I even filmed it pretty good for having to hold the lens up to the camera. That was quite the victory, I was proud of him for that one. After that, Garrett tried to NN this 9 stair rail in the middle of a zoo in Bakersfield. Yeah, a zoo. As in he had to sneak in during off hours and skate a handrail in the middle of all these reptiles and stuff. That's just asking to go to prison. And I even went with him one time. But the zoo people were on to us and put knobs on the rail. Then someone saw a cop drive by, so we got out of there fast. I don't know what we were thinking.... Just as an end note, Garrett's working on a video right now that's supposed to come out pretty soon. I don't know what it's called or exactly when it comes out, but I will keep you posted. Garrett and Bolts of Thunder have formed an alliance to rule the skate industry as father and son against Yoda's wishes. Sorry Yoda...
Friday, February 11, 2011
Me and Matt watched Bolts of Thunder today. That's right, we make skate videos, then we watch them to pump ourselves up to go out and skate. We were actually seeking inspiration for our up and coming video, and what better place to go than where it all began? So we watched all the parts, I was proud of the video, like a father's proud of his children, and then we watched the bonus features. We watched a couple of them, then Matt went to Dave's bonus section. Now for those of you who don't have your own DVD copy of the video, you're wondering what I'm talking about. We didn't put the bonus features on youtube. Maybe we will?... If you want me to, say something and I'll put them up. Until then, you get nothing. And I enjoy watching them, so you might too. Anyway, we watched Nick and Matt's bonus features, then Matt went to Dave's bonus section, which is almost 30 minutes long. It's pretty much a 30 minute documentary of all the pain and mental anguish Dave went through while filming for his part. He really went all out. I wasn't planning on watching all the section because I had to take a test at school. And Matt had to work, so he wasn't going to stay for the entire thing either. But once it started, I couldn't stop watching. That's right, I put my education on hold so that I could watch Dave skate. As I watched Dave's bonus features, you could say that I gained a greater appreciation for how hard Dave tried for his part. He really went all out. As he keeps slamming and falling and spraining joints and bruising stuff and breaking skateboards, I kept thinking, "why do we even put ourselves through all this?" We pretty much put big expectations on ourselves so that we can sit around and watch our own selves skate. Nobody cares if we do anything cool or not, but we do. And that's what made making this video so much fun, even with self-imposed stress. Anyway, in a very round about way, I just wanted to say that Dave's amazing on his skateboard, even if you little skate rats out there think he's an old man doing tricks from '95 (that's what some kid posted on the Transworld site). Yeah, we know we're not competing with major skate videos today, and that's just fine with us. But I can almost guarantee any of you skate punks out there that think you can do better: you won't be jumping down this stuff when you're 27, married, and studying and working full-time. So all you haters (I assume there are hundreds of haters reading this blog every day, just trying to scrape up some dirt on Bolts of Thunder. You ain't gonna do it, we're clean) out there,... I have nothing to say. But thanks for reading this post. No, wait, I do have something to say. In Nick Cave's voice from "Nocturama""BRING IT ON!" Now, watch Dave's part again and just think of yourself trying to do what he's doing when you're 27 and all that other stuff I mentioned.
You can see it on my face, I was scared. And rightfully so, can't you see how steep that is? It's 5 feet tall and half of it is vert. It curves 45 degrees at the bottom, and you land on the main road of Geneva, so you have to try and not let your head get run over when you slam and fly out into the road... Scary stuff. Dave was even suggesting that I cut my losses and stop trying it so that I wouldn't die, along with park employees and gypsies that were washing people's windows on the side of the road. They all came up to me and asked me to stop... Anyway, this is not what I wanted to tell you. What I want to do is tell you a funny incident linked to the first picture of my hands. That was right on the Geneva Lake where we were throwing stale bread at birds and having a good time. I'm not wearing it in the picture, but I have this beanie that my brother Brian's wife Whitny made for me. Whenever I wore that beanie, shady people would walk up to me and ask me, "what you got?" This didn't just happen once, but like twice a week. I found out that only drug dealers wear that kind of beanie in Geneva. And in Paris too, I got stopped on the metro by metro cops because I was wearing this beanie. And I didn't have a train ticket either, I had gone through with Dave. I ended up bribing one of the cops with 5 Euros, and she told me, "Get out of here, quick!" And we were off... Anyway, so people kept thinking I was a drug dealer when I wore that beanie. I told Dave and Lauren that, and they thought it was pretty funny. Then right after Lauren took this picture, some dude walked up to us while we were sitting on a park bench and said, "Excuse me, do you know where I can score some bud?" He even said it in English which made it way cooler. I laughed and told him no, then he said, "I wish you did cause it would sure make my night a lot better. Well you just have a good evening!" What a nice guy. I should have hung out with him while I was there. I guess I didn't think of it at the time... I was quite proud of that event, that Dave and Lauren could witness the beanie in action, witness its mesmerizing effect on people. It brings out the best in humanity, I've decided. If this beanie has such power that it can help people from all cultures, nationalities, and background come together and load up on drugs, think of what the world would be like if we all wore these beanies made by Whitny Hart. Yes, I know what you're thinking now, "I need one of these beanies..." And you're just in luck, we're selling the beanies for only $9.99. But wait, there's more, contact us within the next 30 minutes and receive a complimentary pipe to go with your beanie. But wait, this just in, we'll add in another beanie, absolutely free! A $35.99 value, yours for only $9.99!!! We're slashing everything here at Bolts of Thunder, including integrity and honor! Yes, all of these have all been cut in half with our shameless selling of our magical drug dealing beanies!!!
Here are some more pictures of me tackling that wall. Enjoy!
Photos: Lauren Cooper (Dave's wife)
Thursday, February 10, 2011
This is Matt and Brian Hart. They are brothers. I realized that I never did an official introduction of Brian Hart, so I would like to do that now. He's the one on the left, red wheels. Come on, you know who he is... For those of you who don't know Brian, the first thing you need to know is he's got a deadly left hook right uppercut combo that we like to call the "viper strike". Victims of Brian's viper strike can testify to it's stealth and deadliness, as they found themselves waking up on the ground after having confronted Brian. Good thing for all of you though is that Brian has control of his viper strike, and he will not let it out of its cage unless necessity wills it so. The second thing you need to know about Brian is he's got one of the best "YEAH!" cheers after someone lands a trick that would put a smile on a hardened man's face. The last thing you should know about Brian, and Matt, is that they're the highest quality of brothers a man can ask for. So all you all, give it up for the Hart boys, namely Brian and Matt, and be keeping your eye out for some awesome skating in the up and coming "Bolts of Thunder Gone Wild".
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Photo: Weston Colton
Due to a special request made by Jesse Anthony, I am going to tell a cop chase story. The picture seen here, which is Garrett Taylor obviously bummed out, probably at the fact that he drove for 45 minutes each way during a visit in Salt Lake to film me slam super hard trying to grind that power box. Yes, that picture you love of my crotch sweat all up in your face, that's the one I'm talking about. This picture is completely unrelated to the story that I'm going to tell except for the fact that the story took place in St. George, and I met Garrett in St. George. That's it. Ok, now the story... I'd say I was 14, Matt, my brother, was 16, and Nick Graff, our best friend and pretty much the only kid that skated in St. George with us (a side note on Nick- he's a rad kid. Now that I look back, he was only 11 when I first met him and he had a bicked head and was wearing a shirt that he made with a skull wearing a helmet with a spike on it and with long hair, baggy camouflage cargo pants, and a toy machine skateboard. How can you not appreciate a kid like that?... He got me and Matt into skating, and we skated with him several times a week for years. Almost every cop chasing incident we ever had, Nick was present. In fact, he had probably instigated it. But he taught me and Matt the fine art of hiding and running from cops, which has served me well in my life up until now. We had a lot of fun as kids...), Nick was 13 I think. Around there. Anyway, so Nick had discovered this roof at Dixie High School that you could ollie off of onto foam football practice pads. It was like having a tumbling gym with an 8 foot drop you could jump off of into a foam pad. Nick went crazy on that thing, we sent the pad up probably 15 feet away from the roof and he'd ollie it. I almost impaled myself on my skateboard on it a couple times and was quite suspicious of the whole set up, but Nick was made for this kind of stuff. So one night as we were making our rounds through St. George to Burger King, the designated rendez-vous point with Nick's mom, we stopped at Dixie High to skate off the roof, a mandatory. So me and Nick climb up on the roof, and Nick starts jumping off it in the dark, almost pitch black. It was nuts. I was standing up there threatening to do it, and Nick had just climbed back up the roof, and Matt was standing at the bottom. Then all of a sudden, blue and red lights start flashing behind us in the parking lot, and this voice on a loud speaker yells something incoherent like "St Geor..... olice depar..... ..... ..... surrounded, don't run!" Matt either didn't hear the message, didn't process the message, or didn't care because he took off running SO fast. Like a startled cat that darts of out the bushes or something, he was GONE! He ran the opposite way of the cop, fortunately (I've seen kids trying to run from the cops that run towards the cops. I think that they think that if they run at the cop, it's like a game of chicken, and the cop will quite naturally back down because cops are afraid of 15 year old kids with skateboards. Don't do it, it won't work. Just run the other way). So the cop had snuck up behind me and Nick on the roof in stealth mode and sneak attacked us. Having been taken by surprise, we surrendered ourselves to the custody of the police. We felt we stood better chances at reasoning with the man than jumping off the roof and running. So we got off the roof, and the cop sat us down. He asked us who that other guy was that ran off, and we both said we didn't know. We had just met him a couple minutes earlier, and he decided to follow us. That was the rehearsed story in case one of us ever ran and the others got caught. Like on Goodfellas when the kid gets pinched at the beginning. Robert De Niro tells him that he learned 2 great lessons: don't ever rat on your friends and keep your mouth shut. We took that to heart, and we had planned stories that coincided so that the cops would believe us, and whoever ran would be off home free. I'm telling you, to be able to pull this off as a 14 year old, you have to have a strong stomach for this kind of thing. Cops will detect any variance in story or fear in your eyes. But I was well practiced at deceiving higher authorities. I started when I was 8 years old and I told the principal that Matt didn't write swear words on the bus seat with a paperclip even though they had several eye witnesses that were testifying against me and Matt. My friend David cried in the principle's office and said that Matt did it. He sold us out. Some friend... No, it actually started earlier than that when I denied writing "MATT" on our white couch with a pen when I was 7. I kept a straight face for 2 weeks every time my Dad interrogated me, and I finally confided in my brothers that it was me, and they turned me into my parents who cut off my mullet as punishment. True story, you can't make this stuff up... Suffice it to say, I was well trained in the art of lying to higher authority (a practice that I don't encourage. My lawyer told me to add that so this story won't come back to haunt me...). And Nick, he was even more experienced than me, so we were good. The cop didn't want to believe us at all that we didn't know the guy that ran off, but we both had the same story, and we told it without having to think about it. Lesson learned: prepare yourselves... So the cop was going to take our info down, but then we saw two people walking towards us in the direction that Matt had run. They caught him!!! Turns out that the campus security cop dude was the one that called on us, and he was hiding at the top of these stairs where Matt ran. When Matt got to the top of the stairs, he got Matt, and maybe said, "Where do you think you're going?" You'll have to verify that with Matt, but I like to think the cop had a cliche one liner that he had modified from an Arnold Shwartzininigger quote from "Predator"... or "Junior". (This is Matt. Jon wanted me to verify this. I ran and this cop popped out of these bushes on the top of this hill to the right of me and he took off running after me and was like "Where do you think you're going!" I kept running, but he was way faster and caught up to me, so I had to give up. He asked me the same thing, and all I could say was "I don't know, I'm just running."Real smart stuff.) So he brought Matt back, and he even commented on how fast Matt had taken off. That's a compliment in our book... Then I was ready for it, the wrath of the cops that skaters receive in St George. Nothing short of capital punishment for this one... I tried reaching for the cyanide capsules in my pocket that I carried in case the enemy had ever caught me, but then the cops didn't seem to be all that upset. They started laughing and joking with each other, and even us. They asked us for ID, I said I didn't have any, gave them a fake name, and hoped they wouldn't check it. I even had my wallet in my back pocket, but they didn't even care. They got Matt and Nick's names as well, then the cop casually said, "alright guys, we can't have you on the roof like that cause you can fall off and get hurt. So don't go up there, ok?".... alright... serious? all those lights, loudspeakers, and chasing just to tell us we shouldn't be on the roof? We already knew that, you didn't have to waste your time telling us. And we went back up there after that. Several times.... I thought for sure we were getting into serious trouble, especially because Matt ran.. But nothing. what a relief... Ok, after proof reading this story, I just realized that I look like a compulsive lier, and you'll never trust me again. For the record, I'm a changed man. I even said it after I threw up at the end of my part in Bolts of Thunder. And another thing, why are you judging me? Anyone who frowns upon these stories, you are the kid that would have started crying when the cops got you, you would have told your parents who would have grounded you, taken your skateboard, made you sing in a boys choir as a hobby, and now you're questioning your sexuality. All that because you didn't know what business you were in when you picked up that skateboard! But when the cops asked me those questions, I wasn't upset. I didn't ask any questions, and I didn't seek revenge. Because THIS IS THE BUSINESS WE ARE IN! THIS IS THE BUSINESS WE HAVE CHOSEN! Mo Green was a friend of mine too... But for reals this time, as long as you're not trying to put me in handcuffs, put my brothers in handcuffs, or wanting to cut off my mullet, I will tell you the truth.
Monday, February 7, 2011
This post represents the softer side of Bolts of Thunder. Soft in the emotional, artsy sense. Not physically. We're still in peak physical condition, keeping most of our carbohydrates complex and changing up the colors of our vegetables so we give our bodies the nutrients needed to perform our work. And we're doing a good job at it. No, we're not soft and flabby physically, but emotionally. Emotionally, our hearts are hammering, and this video is our outlet. The filming, editing, cinematography, and costumes are all at the cutting edge of skateboarding, and we believe this video will lead skateboarding into the 21st century. Because here at Bolts of Thunder, it's still '96, and we much rather prefer it that way.
Saturday, February 5, 2011
When we were young, we had a dream that we'd grow old skating together, riding down grass hills side by side as brothers... At Bolts of Thunder, Matt and Brian Hart are keeping this dream alive. I warned you a couple posts ago, but you didn't believe me. I told you that discovery of old school boards would lead to a skating revolution. Kind of like when the guy finds the guitar on the Rush album "2112". For those of you who don't know this album, the priests of the temple of syrinx are slappin everyone down and controlling what they listen to. The kid finds an ancient guitar, starts to play it, becomes a rock star, forms the group "the Spiders from Mars", goes blind and plays pinball, and sings songs about strawberry fields... But we all know that strawberries grow in our personal gardens, not in fields. This guy was obviously on his dope. Anyway, finding and playing this guitar led to a revolution. That's what our old school boards have done. Matt and Brian are riding in perfect harmony down the hill, representing the revolution at hand... Actually, I shouldn't be telling you about the revolution, the gov might cut our cell phones and electricity if things get out of hand. So just enjoy the pictures for now... And that first picture, that's the Lonely Shepherd himself and a sweeter version of "The Edge" from U2... I wrote this comment not meaning anything by it, but I'm wondering now if there could be any more offensive comment than likening one unto "The Edge". For the record, we are not fans of him, his work, or his desire to be known as the cutting part of a knife, or a cliff, or anything with an edge. This post is really a call for help. Or rather, asking all those who like "The Edge" to call for help. There is still more to live for, you shouldn't give up on life so easily. Why don't you just like Bolts of Thunder instead? We'll get you on the right path again...
I'm waiting in the computer lab right now for some phantom employee that was supposed to show up half an hour ago so that I can check out a camera. So while I'm suffering here at school, I thought I'd make you suffer with me. So this is a picture of Matt and Dan on a undercover skate mission. You might recognize this as the rail that Dave smith grinded in his Bolts of Thunder part. If you don't recognize it, then I'm telling you right now, this is the rail that Dave smith grinded in his Bolts of Thunder part. So when we first met Dave, he hadn't skated in like a year and a half or something. Maybe he'd roll around on his board or whatever, but never skated rails or anything big. So when we met Dave, we rekindled a once fueling fire inside his bosom, a love for skating that had almost turned dormant. So the first time we met Dave, he was riding a 7.6 wide board with spray painted gold slip-ons. We didn't know if he was for real or what, but Dave quickly proved he wasn't messing around by getting all his tricks back and jumping down rails again. So I had just bought my video camera, and we were excited to go use it. So the first day we filmed, Dave, our friend's girlfriend, and I went to this rail because Dave wanted to smith grind it. We set up Julie, our lady friend, as an undercover agent on the road to inform us of any po-lees that snooping around in the neighborhood. So Dave looked at the rail for a second, I got the camera set up, and then he just went for it. There were people walking up and down the stairs, Dave had to weave around them as he rode up to the rail, but he seemed unscathed by the whole set up. I was on edge because of it all, but he just went for it. His first try he grinded it perfect and jumped off. I thought he'd get it next try, so did he. His second try he did the disastrous rail-shank smith grind maneuver where you ollie up to the rail, put your back truck in smith position, then fly through the air onto your face at the bottom because you missed your back truck on the rail. That's how fast it happens too, all of a sudden you're flying sideways in the air without your skateboard any more. You're usually more concerned about your skateboard too when you land on your face. I mean, where did it go? Did someone steal it? Oh, no, it's on the stairs, ok, good thing... I thought someone had stolen it. So that was Dave's second attempt. I thought he'd throw in the towel right then, but he got up super fast and went for it again, only to do the same exact rail-shank smith grind maneuver. Then he went back for a 4th try! I thought he was crazy, I wouldn't try it again. He stuck it 2 times after that, but slipped out on the downhill landing. Right after his 2nd stick, Julie yelled out the code word that a cop was coming for us, so Dave ditched his board in the bushes, I put my camera in my bag, and we started down the long set of stairs right after. "Excuse me!!" The cop yelled behind us, but we kept walking down the stairs like we were innocent bi-standards and oblivious to his existence. "Excuse me!" he called again, but we didn't stop. Then Julie, the resourceful quick-thinker she is, stopped the cop to distract him. She said, "Excuse me, officer," so he stopped and turned around. Then she said, "you're walking too slow..." and walked past him. That distracted the cop for just enough time for me and Dave to hide behind a hedge of bushes at the bottom of the stairs. We re-conned with Julie, then sent her back up the stairs to grab Dave's board from the bushes. She said the cop was looking for us up and down the stairs, but we were too clever for him... So she got the board, we got into my car, and drove off. As we were driving off, the cop pulled up right behind us, but he didn't recognize us, or see our skateboards in the back window. He turned off onto another road in hot pursuit of the skaters that had alluded him... Thanks Julie, we owe you for that one... Not that we're ever really going to give you anything, but we'll simply say "thanks" and call it good. So after this experience, Dave and I both wanted Dave to get the smith grind. But Dave rolled his ankle skating my flat bar, then hurt it again on the treacherous south provo rail, so he was out for a couple months. On the day of this picture, Dave wanted to grind the rail, we went there, I took this picture of Matt and Dan, then it started raining, and we all felt too much anxiety to do it this day, so we left. We came back a couple weeks later, and Dave smith grinded it no problem. By this time, Dave was back into action and jumping down rails again. I was really happy when he rolled away...
I found it appropriate today to put the intro for the first Bolts of Thunder video on our blog today. Don't ask me why, I just found it extremely appropriate. A little background on this minute and a half bit of work will help you appreciate it more as you watch it. No, actually, it probably won't. But it might make for good reading. But still, probably not... So most movies and videos have intros. I guess there are a couple that don't, but most do. So as me and Matt were putting the video together, we had a traditional intro for the video: a fast song with people flying on skateboards and stuff like that. Just standard modus operandi, if you will. Nothing new, fun, or exciting. I'll be the first to admit this, Bolts of Thunder is not on the same playing field as major skate videos. And I'm ok with that. I'm actually really happy about that. That means we can do our own thing and have fun. If we were to even try and make a cool intro with a fast song and people wrecking and landing tricks and all that, it would just really fall short of anything cool or exciting that you see in your little skate videos and all that. So Matt and I were thinking of what to do with the intro, and we watched what we already had. Matt said, "I don't like this. We should just have drawings or something..." That hit me like a ton of air, floating above me in the atmosphere, pushing down on my tiny little body, and my tiny little body pushing back with an opposite and equal force. Newton's 5th law. Yeah, I was pushing pretty hard. So I rolled that over in my mind for the entire day, thinking of how we were going to do this. I had been kind of sick for a day or two, so I took NyQuil that night to help me sleep. NyQuil makes me tired, delirious, and a little loopy, but it doesn't help me sleep. So at about 2 in the morning, an idea popped up into my mind. "PAINT!" I don't know if it was pure genius, or the adverse affects of NyQuil on my mind, but I had the idea that I could draw out everyone on the Paint program on the computer. Yeah, we're talking Paint from the old original computers way back when. The for-runner to Adobe After Effects and all those high tech programs. So I got out of bed, sat on my blue exercise ball chair, typed "paint" into the search engine on the computer, and up the program popped... So I started that night drawing what turned out to be a tree getting struck by a lightning bolt and starting on fire. I wanted to have something that might offend small children or sheltered adults, like a burning tree, so that's how it started. After a couple hours, I had the beginning of the intro drawn. I knew exactly what song I wanted to use, I had used it a long time ago in a VHS video that we made. The next day I showed Matt the first couple seconds of the intro, and he laughed really hard. That's when you know if you're on to something, Matt will laugh. That's a good thing with having Matt as pilot on these little operations we run. If something is no good, he will not patronize you and say it was. He will stare blankly at the computer screen, then stare at the ground in disappointment for having wasted his time watching whatever it was. He's a tough critic to pass, but whatever does pass him, you know it'll be good. And that's how your intro was born...