|ESPN.com: Skateboarding||[Print without images]|
Bound to happen: skateboarding goes mainstream, massive stacks of cash get thrown at it, and pro skaters have to get serious if they want a piece. Good thing skateboarding still has cats like Jimmy Carlin. Talented, creative, and, best of all, funny -- he's that annoying yet wise class clown who reminds you that if you're not laughing and having a good time on your board, you're probably missing the point. "A lot of skating is displayed in serious mode right now," Carlin says. "Which is fine, but I don't really relate to that vibe." A few things he can relate to, though, are a Berrics Battle Commander soundtrack compliments of the Sexy Sax Man, the greater artistic lessons gleaned from a certain blue hedgehog, and competitive jump-roping. For that and more from the Mystery skateboards pro, ESPN.com caught up with Carlin over the Crossroads tradeshow weekend for a quick word.
|Jimmy Carlin takes a heelflip over a hefty gap while on a trip to China.|
How did you get the Sexy Sax Man involved with your Berrics video part?
The guys over at Omit were watching a Sergio Flores (AKA Sexy Sex Man) video one day and I guess one of the homies over there had a friend that knew him. Chris Cole and Ken Lewis originally wanted him to crash The Berrics while I was filming, but I ended up finding out about it so we decided to have him come in as a skit. Sergio Flores is a real cool mellow dude and is extremely talented.
He's had some pretty good run-ins with security guards, too.
He told me he recently did a skit on an airplane while it was mid-flight, and when they landed there were air marshals waiting for him at the gate.
Why are you covered with felt pen in your Berrics part?
It's more of like a "Why not?" situation for me sometimes. I had a good time with Chase Gabor filming it, and we were constantly telling each other jokes and laughing throughout the days spent in there. I didn't expect my Battle Commander to be epic with inspirational music. I just figured, "Well, this place has been destroyed with tricks and I can't do flip-in, flip-out stuff, so I just figured maybe I can skate to the worst song imaginable and it went on from there. I just figured a lot of skating is displayed in serious mode right now, which is fine, but I don't really relate to that vibe. I don't care if people think I'm funny or if they think I'm the most annoying person alive. I just end up having inside jokes with my friends and it usually gets into videos.
Overall, how was the experience, and how was it different than filming a normal video part?
It was rad. What I liked most about it is that I became friends with all the dudes over there. Yoon [Sul] is hilarious. I would see him a lot and it was nonstop laughter. Chase is rad, too. We actually are really good friends now, and I don't think I would have been able to have met everybody over there if it wasn't for those dudes at The Berrics letting me film a Battle Commander. The Battle Commander was hard in the fact that I wanted to learn new tricks. I made it a goal to try to film a video part doing tricks I normally can't do. That place is perfect for learning stuff. It also gets overwhelming because there are not many basic tricks left to film in there at this point.
|Jimmy Carlin locks into a lengthy tailslide in a drainage ditch off the beaten path.|
A normal video part is a lot different in the fact that you can find a spot or two that hasn't been killed and get away with whatever you like. It's more time consuming in figuring out when you're allowed to skate certain spots, either on the weekdays or the weekends, and if you drive somewhere far and get kicked out you have to figure something else out or you just retreat back to home. At The Berrics, there's no police to kick you out, so you have all the time you want. I wish it were the same for street skating.
How'd it go down when you were the first handpicked guy to ride for Chris Cole's Omit clothing?
Chris called me up one day and asked if I'd like to be part of a new company he's starting up. I was beyond down. I had just gotten back from a Zero tour with him and he told me he was really psyched that I skated all the demos and that I ended up staying in Philly at Tom Asta's house for an extra week to go street skating more than we were able to on the Zero trip.
How has Sonic the Hedgehog affected your life?
It's "the child in me" type of thing. I played those games a lot and when I learned how to draw, Sonic helped me out in learning how to draw reflections in eyes and how to draw hand positions, such as a fist. Things like that. I'm into doing artwork and my roots of it all was learning how to draw that blue hedgehog.
How about Cody; what was it like growing up skating with your kid brother?
He started skating a lot later than me and to tell the truth we had separate friends that we skated with for a while when we were younger. I'm three years older than him so by the time he was in high school we started skating a bunch more together. That was around the time when he really started skating a lot more. Now it's perfect because we live together. So I know his schedule for when he gets home from school and when he needs to study. Over the last few years I've been a lot closer to Cody than I ever have in my life. It's awesome to have a brother who's my best friend and just so happens to enjoy skateboarding as much as I do.
Heard you were a competitive jump-roper. True story?
I started jump-roping when I was a little kid. Did it for a few years. I don't know how it really came about; I just know I somehow got on this jump rope team they were doing at my school. I got to travel around the U.S. and compete. I remember I did a trick in front of a jump-rope instructor that was trying to teach us some wicked new moves. He gathered the other higher-ups that were around and had me do the move in front of them. I can't remember what I named it; it might have been "the helicopter" or something. Later on they asked me if they could use that trick in some routine.
And finally, why would Andrew Cannon tell me to ask you about getting naked?
Probably because I've done it in the past. I sometimes like to make people feel uncomfortable. Like if everybody is partying hard, I want to be the one partying the hardest.