How To Wreck A Lexus

How To Wreck A Lexus
The Birdhouse/Hooters Tour 2002.
Words by Tom Green

Hello, my name is Tom Green, and I am a professional skateboarder-uhh yeah. I guess I’m still getting used to the sound of that. I must admit, at times, I do feel a little overwhelmed. When I was sixteen years old, I used to grow my hair so I’d look like Tony Hawk, and now I skate with him on his team-I’m pretty stoked. Not only does it seem crazy to have my own pro model, but it also seems crazy to have just gone along with the rest of Team Birdhouse, skating in front of thousands of people across the country, living it up in extravagent hotels, and traveling in the lap of luxury-well, not exactly.

About two weeks ago, I embarked on my first cross-country tour as a professional skateboarder. The tour was exhausting. I’m physically sick from lack of sleep, poor diet, excessive drinking, and fear of being arrested. Every day felt like it could possibly be the last due to some f-ked up event. Needless to say, it was one of the gnarliest road trips I’ve ever been on, and I’ve been on quite a few road trips doing my show.

I guess I could rhyme out every town we went to and give you a detailed account of everything that happened along the way, but there wouldn’t be enough room in the magazine. So instead, I’m going to focus on the key points. I will say that I’ve never done so much driving. We did about fifteen demos in towns large and small from Phoenix, Arizona to Fargo, North Dakota. Then the whole tour ended with a bang, appropriately in Las Vegas, where we had Willy Santos’ bachelor party.

I spent most of the tour driving in a Lexus SUV with Jeremy Klein and Willy Santos, so what I say will be how I viewed things from that perspective. Much of our time was spent shooting Roman candles at the other cars in our convoy. Brian Sumner, Vinny Vegas, Tony Hawk, Bucky Lasek, and all the Birdhouse ams (Joey Poirez, Matt Allen, Shawn Eaton, and Matt Ball) were in the other cars. They were often instigators in massive fireworks wars that almost got me arrested, if not nearly burned and blinded on many occasions.

I’m not sure if this is standard behavior on a pro skate tour, ’cause this was my first one. I will tell you without fear of sounding like a pussy that fireworks scare the living shit out me. When people start letting them off inside the car that I’m in, I feel fear. Jeremy Klein, on the other hand, seems to enjoy this very much. I wish I could describe the joy in Jeremy’s eyes the day we drove past a Black Cat factory outlet in Kansas. When he sees fireworks, he looks like a little kid experiencing Christmas morning for the first time.

Of course, we stopped at the Black Cat outlet. Two hours, two shopping carts, and probably about two-thousand dollars later-we were back on the road. Jeremy bought so many f-king bottle rockets that he was literally sitting on top of bags of them. There was just no more room in our car. I spent pretty much the rest of the trip scared shitless and wearing goggles. Still, it was hilarious.

I can tell you about one incident in North Dakota where Jeremy almost went to jail. We were cruising down some highway at 100 miles per hour while I was sleeping in the backseat. All of a sudden, our car was getting pelted with tin cans, eggs, and garbage by one of the other tour vans. Jeremy lit a Roman candle and handed it to Willy, who was almost instantly standing out the sunroof and firing at the other van. Billy Tinnel, the Birdhouse tour manager, was driving the other car with all the ams, and all of a sudden he had a smashed windshield. I guess the Roman candles are pretty powerful.

I was sitting in the backseat screaming like a scared little girl, praying for it all to stop. This was all going on in the middle of the day on a crowded highway! Not only that, but there were so many fireworks in our f-king car that I felt like I was sitting on a bomb. Suddenly, we we surrounded by cops! I guess some other motorist reported the dangerous activities. I really don’t know how we didn’t go to jail, but Jeremy took the heat for everybody with three tickets-one for speeding, one for dangerous driving, and one for throwing a burning object from a moving vehicle. Needless to say, we all got lucky-well, all except for Jeremy.

The tour was sponsored by Lexus, so we had these cars that they provided for us. Not only did we drive them across the country, but we skated on them at every stop. There’s something rad about skating on a brand-new 50-thousand-dollar automobile-smashing its windshield, grinding its bumper, crushing its hood with your feet and wheels.

I’d never really skated in a demo before, so it was a cool experience to skate in front of a bunch of people. My big trick was usually launching over a burning object, most notably a burning kangaroo Outback Steakhouse in Rapid City had donated to us. Jeremy seems to be somewhat of a pyrotechnics expert, and at almost every truck stop on the tour, he was buying some weird thing to light on fire at the next demo. Everybody on the team skated pretty hard, considering we’d all been driving sometimes as much as fourteen hours right to the demo.

At some point early on in the tour, we went to Hooters. I think it was in Lewisville, Texas. We met many lovely ladies that evening at the Texas Hooters and also enjoyed a delicious spread of the famous Hooters chicken wings. In fact, this became a problem, because somehow we got it in our heads that we should stop at every Hooters in every town we visited. I think the team developed a sort of “Hooters” addiction. I must say that every Hooters we stopped at was quite hospitable, but eating chicken wings every night for two weeks straight did start to wear on our tired bodies.

It didn’t occur to us at the time, but Hooters actually became somewhat of a theme to the trip. Often we’d even invite the Hooters girls to our demos, complete in their lovely orange shorts and tank tops. This, we all felt, seemed to make the demos far more exciting. It kind of gave the tour an almost WWF feel, with the girls sometimes allowing us to launch over them in an almost Evel Knievel-esque fashion. Actually, it was kind of lame, but it was lame to such an impossible degree that it, in my mind, flipped over and became awesome.

At one point, I actually launched over a total of five Hooters girls-very very impressive, to say the least. Hooters became such a theme, that on days where we were in towns without a Hooters, we’d sometimes phone a Hooters just to hear the soothing sound of a friendly Hooters girl’s voice. You could almost smell the chicken wings through the phone lines.

We spent many hours on the cell phone while driving through South Dakota, trying to track down Heather. Heather was an elusive Hooters girl in Ottawa made internationally famous in the Hooters calendar magazine. Pick it up-she’s in the Hooters Girls Of Canada section, and it’s really quite lovely. She’s awesome, and on behalf of Team Birdhouse, I’d like to personally thank all the wonderful new friends we made at Hooters for making our trip so pleasant.

Speaking of the smell of chicken wings, I cannot write an accurate depiction of this tour without acknowledging the powerful smells which often escaped from Bucky Lasek’s ass. Perhaps it was his steady diet of chicken wings that added to this ability. Regardless, Bucky Lasek had the most powerful smelling farts I have ever witnessed. On one particular occasion in Fargo, North Dakota, Bucky let off gas in the van. This fart was so deadly that I actually began to vomit. This then opened up a series of stories about Bucky’s ass that are so ridiculous, they can’t be believed.

Tony Hawk could hardly contain himself as he recounted one particular “Bucky ass skill” moment. Tony told us of a time that Bucky used his ass talent to suck water from the Hawk family hot tub jet into his butt. He then retained this water in his ass long enough to then squirt it from that same ass onto the Hawk family dog. This dog, unknowingly, would then lap up the water with thirsty glee. Tony also told us that Bucky could smoke a cigarette with his ass. I guess he somehow has the ability to inhale with his asshole. I’m not sure if he’s actually able to breathe this way, but he sure can smoke.

Bucky also has an amazing ability to pass gas into his own hand, then walk from his car to another, and transfer the handful of gas into the new vehicle. This technique, I believe he referred to it as “butter cupping,” was so shockingly effective that we were forced to keep our vehicle locked whenever Bucky’s car was in the area. At one point on the tour, our car was pelted on the highway by what appeared to be a log of Bucky’s own shit. We were happy to later discover that it was only a bean burrito.

Tony got a flat tire on his first day on the tour, and he ran out of gas somewhere in the middle of Utah. That’s not really funny, but it’s true, so there. Tony liked throwing shit at our car, so we egged him and threw cherry pies back. Jeremy almost burned down a night club, then proceeded to take the mic and do his own impromptu rendition of “Ice Ice Baby” while I played drums.

Willy Santos slept a lot. He has this magic ability to sleep for fourteen hours straight in the backseat of a car. He didn’t seem too nervous about his looming wedding-although I wouldn’t know, he was always asleep. Brian Sumner and I started a band-he was on guitar, and I was on drums. A bunch of us discovered Wrangler Pro Bull Rider wear-it’s gonna be bigger than FUBU!

I think Vinny Vegas was responsible for having the police called to our hotel at 3:00 a.m. We all got evicted and started driving. Actually, I’m not really sure if it was Vinny, but there was a lot of broken furniture in the parking lot. We did tons of driving, some days fifteen hours in one direction. I’d often scratch my head the next day when we’d backtrack about twelve hours to another demo. Sometimes it felt like we were driving in circles. Actually, we often were driving in circles.

There’re so many stories that I wish I could tell. But some things are just better left on the road where they belong. I can say that the tour ended fittingly in Las Vegas, where we all lost a lot of money at the blackjack tables and enjoyed watching Willy Santos at his bachelor party. About a week after the tour, Willy got married-congratulations, Willy!

In conclusion, the Team Birdhouse tour was crazy. I think I’m gonna sleep for a couple of days. Peace.

from the Hawk family hot tub jet into his butt. He then retained this water in his ass long enough to then squirt it from that same ass onto the Hawk family dog. This dog, unknowingly, would then lap up the water with thirsty glee. Tony also told us that Bucky could smoke a cigarette with his ass. I guess he somehow has the ability to inhale with his asshole. I’m not sure if he’s actually able to breathe this way, but he sure can smoke.

Bucky also has an amazing ability to pass gas into his own hand, then walk from his car to another, and transfer the handful of gas into the new vehicle. This technique, I believe he referred to it as “butter cupping,” was so shockingly effective that we were forced to keep our vehicle locked whenever Bucky’s car was in the area. At one point on the tour, our car was pelted on the highway by what appeared to be a log of Bucky’s own shit. We were happy to later discover that it was only a bean burrito.

Tony got a flat tire on his first day on the tour, and he ran out of gas somewhere in the middle of Utah. That’s not really funny, but it’s true, so there. Tony liked throwing shit at our car, so we egged him and threw cherry pies back. Jeremy almost burned down a night club, then proceeded to take the mic and do his own impromptu rendition of “Ice Ice Baby” while I played drums.

Willy Santos slept a lot. He has this magic ability to sleep for fourteen hours straight in the backseat of a car. He didn’t seem too nervous about his looming wedding-although I wouldn’t know, he was always asleep. Brian Sumner and I started a band-he was on guitar, and I was on drums. A bunch of us discovered Wrangler Pro Bull Rider wear-it’s gonna be bigger than FUBU!

I think Vinny Vegas was responsible for having the police called to our hotel at 3:00 a.m. We all got evicted and started driving. Actually, I’m not really sure if it was Vinny, but there was a lot of broken furniture in the parking lot. We did tons of driving, some days fifteen hours in one direction. I’d often scratch my head the next day when we’d backtrack about twelve hours to another demo. Sometimes it felt like we were driving in circles. Actually, we often were driving in circles.

There’re so many stories that I wish I could tell. But some things are just better left on the road where they belong. I can say that the tour ended fittingly in Las Vegas, where we all lost a lot of money at the blackjack tables and enjoyed watching Willy Santos at his bachelor party. About a week after the tour, Willy got married-congratulations, Willy!

In conclusion, the Team Birdhouse tour was crazy. I think I’m gonna sleep for a couple of days. Peace.