By Sean Mortimer

Reynolds rips Lakeland before the growth spurt!

What was your skate scene like in Lakeland, Florida?

I got lucky to always have a friend or two to skate with.

Skateboarding wasn't big when you started?
Well, I went to see Gleaming the Cube [1989] in the movie theater and I'd probably just started skating and there were a lot of skaters in the movie theater with their boards. I was shocked. Where did all these guys come from? But they were all way older than me. Then I got more into skating and met kids, just a couple little kids in my neighborhood and then some kid moved from Australia and I skated with him. It was always like a group of three kids I skated with, never a big scene of 15 or 20 kids at a spot.

Was there a local spot where everybody would skate?

We had a lot of spots. We had a place that was our EMB. You know how every town has their wannabe EMB spot? We had one that was ledges and double sided blocks. I'd skate there from my house. It was probably three miles. I'd skate there every day. It was a courtyard in an abandoned, out-of-business department store. It only lasted for a while but it was sick.

What was the weather like in Lakeland?

Super hot, but when you grow up in it you don't know any different. It's so humid and disgusting and you're skating all day long. If you live in California for a three or four years and go back and go in it, you're like, "Whoooa, oh my God." But when you're a kid, that's all you know.

Was there any particular sessions that stick out fondly?

The scene kind of got bigger around the Eastern Exposure, Ricky Oyola type of days, you know? We thought our downtown was Philly with the curb cuts and grinding the window seals against the walls. That was pretty sick at that time. It went from doing stupid tech tricks to more going fast and grinding and ollieing and more like real skating. We had fun during that time.

Are the spots you used to skate still around?

Our EMB spot is gone but a couple of spots we used to skate are still there. I'll go cruise around [when I'm back] but most of the stuff is like curb cuts. I don't really…

Do you miss anything about Lakeland?

If anything, I miss Southern cooked food, like certain restaurants, like barbeque. I live in L.A. so everybody is pretty into material stuff, the way they look and their car and bullsh-t like that. You don't really get that much in the South, so that's kind of cool.

Tony Hawk told me how you got all bummed on the blinged out cars and rims so you spray painted the rims on your Prius.

I gave that car to my sister. They looked perfect. It was really good. I saw Eric [Koston] do it to his truck and we did my Prius too. Now I have a Cadillac, which is kind of right in the middle. A BMW or something is probably around 80 thousand, a regular car is around 30, and a Cadillac is 40, 50—in there. I just figured, I like Cadillacs—I get to treat myself a little and be happy without having to spend 100 grand on a car.

Was it a hard transition moving to California?

No. I wanted to come earlier but my mom made me graduate from high school.

Mortimer wrote some books with Hawk, Mullen, Daewon, Olson, Vallely, Haslam, etc.

Hawk: Occupation Skateboarder

Mullen: The Mutt
Daewon, Olson, Haslam: Stalefish