Pekins, Hip Kits, And 50 Cartons

Josh Kalis and I started off on a ten-hour journey to Dayton, Ohio to meet up with the Alien Workshop crew for a tour. With 75-degree weather in Philly, we were pretty bummed to leave. But we knew our adventure for the next week would be interesting.

Both of us were sick and couldn’t handle the drive, so we got a hotel room.

4/15/99

After checking out of the hotel, we were soon at the Workshop. It was pouring rain in Dayton. With nothing to do, we shopped around the warehouse for some new gear. Both of us left for this trip unprepared. Duh!

Chris Carter and Mike Hill (the owners of Alien Workshop) rented a huge Winnebago that would accommodate our comfort for traveling. There were eight of us: Jason Dill, Anthony Van England, Fred Gall, Josh Kalis, Carter and Hill, Joe Castrucci (Alien Workshop filmer), and me (TWS photographer retard).

After organizing our gear, we headed toward Cincinnati. The weather wasn’t looking too good, so Carter suggested we head toward Nashville instead.

The ride was pretty much luxurious. The Winnebago had everything we needed from a few beds to a shower; we even set up a mini casino in there and started gambling. Kalis was winning money all night with his unique luck at playing blackjack, while Carter and Hill navigated the way and talked to truckers on the CB. Soon enough, we got to a hotel in Nashville.

4/16/99

We woke up to a windy day and wondered if any skating could be done. After a bite to eat a Shonees, we headed toward the memorial in downtown Nashville. Freddy was super amped and pulled off a few sick lines down the rail, along with some photos, too.

Later on we ate at a ghetto pizza place. Dill was the comedian of the trip. Nonstop he’d tell the funniest stories, while we scarfed down some harsh pizza.

On our way back to the RV, we came across a perfect eight-stair rail with a long, mellow kink. But it didn’t look possible because there was a street sign right in front of the landing. With the generators kicking and the cameras rolling, Anthony grinded his way to success avoiding the old street sign–a perfect ten. We then headed back to the hotel, hoping for a less windy day tomorrow.

4/17/99

Another cold and even windier day out. No one was really motivated to skate. Freddy slept in the RV all day, due to some slams yesterday he was out of it. The rest of us searched some spots.

Vroom! Vroom! The generators and cameras were out again. Dill found a spot to skate. Nashville was getting beat. There wasn’t much in this city to skate. “Let’s be out to Dallas,” shouted Kalis. And away we went.

4/18/99

I passed out in the RV on the way to Dallas, thinking we would check into a hotel soon–but no. Peeking out the back window, I caught a glimpse of a sign that said Forth Worth. Damn! Carter and Hill pulled an all-night power drive. Fort Worth is right outside of Dallas with some good spots.

Our day started off not so good. We parked the RV in front of a federal building at 10:30 a.m. Skating this early was rare. After a few minutes, a cop came up and insisted on searching the RV. He thought it looked sketchy. If he’d searched harder, he would’ve found some fertilizer and C4 under the bed. Idiot!

Later, we skated Fort Worth’s marble gardens, I noticed Freddy and Josh were no where in sight. Weird?! A cop came around the corner and broke up our fun. Fred was around the corner, detained in the back of a police car, and Josh was sitting outside of it being searched. Fred was almost arrested for not having his ID. This one cop was too into his job; he was dressed up in full SWAT gear, so we called him SWAT. Carter explained to him we were documenting a skateboard film, so SWAT let Fred off the hook.

We went back to Dallas and checked into a hotel to rest up. Later on we skated at Fairpark, this huge amusement-type area outside of the city. It’s clustered with museums, stadiums, and sculptures. Park security doessn’t give two shits if you skate there. So if you search around, you’re bound to have some fun.

The end of the day turned out good. Fred got a few pics, while Jason and Anthony filmed some lines with Joe. Dallas was good to us. Hopefully, it will stay that way.

4/19/99

Our day started at Fairpark again. Then after rush hour, we headed into downtown. Dallas has so many spots to offer, but a lot of spots are unskateable. Every spot we approached, security was there chasing us out while calling the cops. Josh was super sketched because he had five warrants for being a badass when he used to live here.

If you want to come and skate downtown Dallas, chances are you’re gonna get nothing done. It’s best to skate outside of the city. Sticking with that option, we headed off to Bill’s Record Shop. Right outside sat a perfect four-stair ledge that was about ten-feet long. Josh and Anthony assaulted it ’til there was no energy left inside of them. The night ended well.

4/20/99

We woke up to CNN coverage of the massacre in Littleton, Colorado. All of us were glued to the TV. It was one of those days where things started out slowly. Since it was 90 degrees out, we geared up for another late night session at Bill’s. And once again, a bag full of tricks were done at this good ledge.

4/21/99

“Did you see my phone? I can’t find my cell phone! Ahh!”

These were the first words I heard out of Jason’s mouth this morning. Apparently, Jason lost his cell phone–hipkit. We spent the portion of the day driving around to spots where we’d previously been in pursuit of finding the baby blue hipkit–no luck at all. Having a cell phone is like being addicted to crack, and Jason was suffering from withdrawls all day.

We also hit up ditches, marble gaps, and ledges. Fred skated good all day, while the others were too tired from the previous night to skate at all. Fred had a clear head and landed every trick he attempted.

4/22/99

We took a six-hour journey to Houston and woke up at Southside Skatepark. This place is really good. We all sessioned the park for a few hours to get warmed up for downtown. Houston was just like Dallas. Bust! Bust! This was getting too frustrating. We checked into a 70s-style hotel awaiting our long journey back to Cincinnati.

4/23/99

Somehow we ended up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana skating these little banks under a bridge. Carter and Hill were bringing back the good ol’ memories of skating the Catfish Banks that Dyrdek skated in the first Workshop video Memory Screen. They were super stoked.

Later we found ourselves at this perfect bank structure– transitions almost going up to vert. Dill and Fred were skating it for a good ten minutes before we got kicked out. We hopped back into the RV for a ten-hour drive to Cincinnati.

4/24/99

We cruised up to a spot in Cincinnati that was a perfect replica of Hubba Hideout. While Fred, Josh, and Anthony skated, Carter noticed “Don Dill” walking far in the background. Dill didn’t want to skate, so we’d left him downtown so he could do some shopping. But who knows how in the hell he ended up waltzing by our Hubba spot–we were at least a few miles away from where we’d left him. We hadn’t even let him know where we were going. We called out to him, but he just kept walking in search for some campus girls.

Carter decided to call it the day. Dill was lost, Fred was hurt, Anthony was exhausted, and Josh was homesick. A good night out at a restaurant was well needed. Thanks to Carter and Hill, this was the end of our adventure.