His stories are long and pointless. Give him a beer and he’s the loudest person ever! Everyone loves him and hates him at the same time. He was the perfect addition for HUF because most of us have known him for years. Jake was four feet tall and chubby when I met him, now he can beat me up.-Tyler Cichy
Words By Blair Alley
Photos By Andrew Peters
Who are your favorite ams right now?
Mason Silva is dope. That’s probably a common answer. This is a hard question. Everybody’s dope. Ams are better than pros, except me.
Who’s an am who should be pro?
Matt Gottwig. My dog.
What are some lessons that your big brother, Mike, has taught you?
Don’t say stupid shit, but I always do that. I just ask him stuff and he’ll tell me yay or nay.
What are your thoughts on full-length videos? Do you like them, or are they on their way out?
I like them, but sadly because of the Internet, it’s just diminishing into three- or 10-minute videos. The thing I respect about full-length videos is how much time and work goes into it. Years go into it. Now you put out a 10-minute video clip on the internet that was filmed in three months and it seems so forced. With a full-length video, you can make it look the way you want, you can design your part, you know? There’s not as much thought put into the little quick-clip parts.
How old are you?
What was the first skate video you saw?
Misled Youth or something. I can’t answer that question, because having Mike as my older brother, I was watching skate videos when I was three and I didn’t know what I was watching. He’s seven years older than me.
“AMS ARE BETTER THAN PROS, EXCEPT ME.”
Who was your first favorite pro?
Dennis Busenitz, because Mike liked him.
How about now?
Brian Delatorre. Every spot you go to in SF or New York, it’s like “Dela did this…” And it’s like, “How the fuck?! Well, all right, next spot!” He’s amazing.
Who’s the most impressive person you’ve met since you’ve been sponsored and meeting pros and people in the industry?
[Brad] Cromer. He’s insane. He’s amazing to watch on a skateboard.
How’d you get on Skate Mental?
Me and [Tyler] Cichy went out to SF filming for his video Agoura Lifestyle. I knew [Dan] Plunkett through social media, through like Vine—that’s so crazy. Tyler was like, “I’m gonna hit up Plunkett.” He came out for a couple of the days we were there. On our way home, Plunkett asked Tyler to show Brad [Staba] my footage. Brad liked it and then I went on the Road Hogs trip, I got hazed for five days straight. I thought Brad hated me. Seventh day in, I ended up getting on the team. Karsten [Kleppan] put me on the team.
Did you guys really drink a lot of Mike’s Hard Lemonade?
Yeah. Brad thought it was funny to buy those. He kept buying them, and we kept drinking them.
What is an Agoura lifestyle?
Suburban neighborhood lifestyle. You know, you party in the kitchen.
“I’VE NEVER BEEN IN A FIGHT, AND THEN TWO FIGHTS IN FIVE MINUTES.”
Like rich housewives and stuff?
Yeah. It’s not that cool, it’s kind of an inside joke. Party in the kitchen.
Did your grandma tell your mom that she thought you were gay? And then your mom always thought Mike was gay?
It’s true. My grandma thought I was gay because I was stoked on this purple satin button-up long- sleeve that my buddy bought for me at the thrift store. I rocked it, and my grandma is old as shit and she thought a boy wearing purple was not right. So she was like, “Oh, he’s gay.” My mom just naturally thought Mike was gay. There was no reason, she just thought that’s what he was. Just the way he went about everything.
Do you drive out from Ventura with Curren Caples to go to 1OAK in LA?
[Laughs] We’ve done that once, dude! One time. It’s psycho. It’s scary. It’s not real. We were on somebody else’s coattails. It’s like a joke, it’s like a movie. We walked in, and the fog machine was blaring out and confetti started coming down, and it was all because the bass of a song dropped. It went wild! And that was just a normal thing—just air spraying everywhere.
Can you not do switch flip tricks?
I just figured out my switch flips and I’m stoked. As of four days ago, I figured them out. This has happened like five times, where I figure them out and then lose them.
Did you lie in an interview recently and say that Dick Rizzo is secretly Canadian?
That’s absolutely true, he just doesn’t like it to get out there.
Did you get jumped recently outside a bar in Ventura?
Yeah. We left one bar and were walking past another bar, and this dude bumps into me. I go to say sorry, but before I can say anything, he says, “Watch the fuck out!” And I start laughing, like, “Are you serious?” And then he starts talking shit. I’m with my friend Tim, and Tim’s like, “Let’s just go across the street.” So we’re walking along each other, across the street, and the other guy keeps talking shit. All I said was “fuck off,” and the guy starts walking across the street to me. Goddamn it, why did I say that!? He was ready in the fighting stance, and he gets up to me, and I just punched him because he was gonna hit me. I threw the first punch. Another dude came and I was like, “Okay, Tim, you got this?” Before I knew it there were four dudes on me. I had to dive out, and Tim and I ran to the taco truck and met up with all our boys. We were like, “Holy shit! We just got jumped. This is insane, this has never happened.” Then this random dude that had nothing to do with the prior crew that beat the shit out of me, comes up to me and says, “You got a fucking problem?” I was like, “Are you kidding me?” He squared up to me, and I just shoved him away from me as he tried to swing on me. I dodged it, hit him, and just left. It was following me that night. I’ve never been in a fight, and then two fights in five minutes.
What’s up with Ventura? Didn’t Moose get jumped there?
Yeah. There are a lot of crews that just go out to start some shit, and I finally got caught up in it for the first time. I got out good, I’m really fortunate to get out without any stab wounds.
It seems like HUF has a bunch of flow riders. How’d you break through and get on the team?
I’m good friends with Tyler and I know a lot of people at HUF, like Hayden [Biener] who designs shoes, and a lot of people. I started getting shoes from them, and I’d skate with Tyler all the time. It gradually just happened. I didn’t have to be brought in, everybody kind of knew me. I did the Agoura part and then Tyler said we were gonna do the am thing. I was like, “Okay.” It was awesome.
More Am Issue Interviews: