BACK IN The spotlight part 8
Most kids dreams of being sponsored start about twenty minutes after discovering their first skateboard. When you have found something that is so much fun that it's all you can think about, what could be better than getting free stuff to skate on? Maybe even getting your name on a board, fuck - imagine if skateboarding was your job! That must be the best thing in the world, right?
The reality is though, however good you are, there is always some little bastard coming up that is better than you, has a better image or simply played the game better and sucked up to/sucked off the right team manager... Regardless of how long your time in the sun is, most people don't ever get there, so sponsored skaters are put on a pedestal for all the kids to look up to. Some thrive on this, others crumble under the pressure and some just start to fucking hate the thing they once loved. We hit up some skaters that were a staple fixture in the skate world not so long ago to see exactly where they disappeared to and what they are up to now. We have had such an overwhelming response that we've had to split this article into a few parts or it'd end up being longer than the bible.
We asked everyone the same simple three questions:
1. When and why did you decide to throw in the towel on being sponsored, or did someone throw it in for you?
2. Do you miss it at all? How is post-skating / real life treating you?
3. How much are you skating these days? Any chance of a comeback?
'Throwing in the towel...' well skating had reached a certain point to where I just did not want to hurl myself down stairs and rails to barely make the cut. Although I've done my share of that stuff, it wasn't what came naturally to me. I'm grateful that I've always been a well rounded skateboarder that likes to ride whatever but in order to stay pro at the time, I just was not interested in playing that game anymore. I've always played drums since a very young age and I had already started touring with some bands too, so that started to take some time off the board as well, until eventually I decided that I wanted to dedicate my life to playing drums. That's what I currently do full time.
Do I miss it? Some parts yes, others no. I miss things that are from my generation though. Call it nostalgia, those times will never repeat themselves, but I am lucky to have been around skateboarding throughout the years, whether it be the occasional job or being stoked to call a lot of skaters that are current top masters of the arts, good homies. I am stil tied in through music and the bands that I play in. I'm lucky that skaters have wanted to use my music in there vids and come to the gigs. I've always promoted the art of skating and making music and that it is a way of life. Post skate life is treating me very well. I play drums in 4 international touring/recording bands. I make a living playing the drums. Not a day goes by that I don't tell myself that I am a lucky mofo to be doing what I am doing for a living. I've had my share of jobs. I have to support a family. After I got laid off of my last job, I told myself that I will always try my hardest through thick and thin to always to make that drumset my "desk job". If I have to go back to a normal 9 to 5, then so be it, besides being a Husband and father, playing drums is what I honestly feel what I was brought onto this earth for.
I skate when I can, I meet up with the Slappy crew on Sundays when I am home and not on the road, and I go to a skatepark on occasion. My personal goal is to always keep 20 tricks. It don't matter what it is, just keep doing 'em & don't let them slip away. Skateboarding has changed my life in so many ways and I've met so many great people from it. Always & forever. Drums & Skating.
I was going through some shit so I probably threw in the towel. I do miss it, I got mad love for skateboarding. A comeback, anything is possible.
I currently have no idea where my career is. I'm a 3D flow rider, plus I skate for Brad Staba, Huf & Indy! Plus Mad Pax backpacks. I never threw in the towel because I don't look at it that way, plus I skate everyday because I still love it! I guess you can't miss what you never left!
You see a long time ago in the industry I learned it's better to take care of yourself than to worry if a company can. So I set up things so I can skate! Investments went into me skating and are paying off as we speak, so I have a different view I guess, but thanks for considering me. Plus i just entered Tampa Pro, I'm truly not done yet.
Well, I never decided to throw the towel. I have been skating since `88 and it sometimes freaks me out that i still have the same motivation to go out and skate since I first started doing it. When my deal with Darkstar ended, I knew that I wouldn’t have been able to find another decent US sponsor. I also didn’t really want to. I was getting older and I had messed up my ankle really bad. I had a few surgeries but it never fully healed up, even as of today. Also, even back then it was hard making a living out of skating whilst living in expensive Switzerland, so I had to figure out what to do next. My backup profession was in banking and financials, but I really didn’t want to go back to that. At the same time, me and some friends started 'Safari‘, a small clothing company out of Zurich, Switzerland. This project developed into a full distribution company, which me and my friend Kay are owning and managing today. The company is a mix between clothing brands and consumer electronics. Some of the current brands are LRG, Nike SB, Safari, Marshall Headphones, Urbanears Heaphones, WeSC, HEX… just to name a few. In the meantime I always kept skating and also filmed a few local video parts. Here’s my part from Safari’s 10 year anniversary from fall 2013: http://vimeo.com/channels/tenyearssafari/76508061
I definitely miss all the winter trips to Cali and meeting up with friends over there. That was a time with a lot of care free time on my hands - these days it gets harder and harder to find time to go skate. I am married and have a little 7 month old boy, and also the Safari Distribution company eats a lot of my time. I am way more happy to have skating just as a hobby, like when I first started skating. I still follow skateboarding very closely and watch videos, magazines, etc… I still love it as much as when I first started!
I try to skate 2-3 times a week. Depending on the season. I also still enjoy battling and filming tricks, just for myself though. The feeling of trying a trick for hours and finally getting it is one of the best feelings ever. A comeback is definitely not planned.
Enough to keep in shape and keep a smile on my face! I have found Animal Chin and he told me only do it if you're still having fun.. I took my first seven runs in Combi in a year and got top ten in the Masters - that's cool with me, ha! I am still sponsored, I have a new model coming out with Canvas Skateboards, got my Indy trucks and pads and Rockstar juice, so life is still treating Cookiehead right!
I am always thinking about skating or day dreaming about it, but in my normal life it is very adventurous. I have some great biz partners - Mendocino fo life!!
Thanks. Live the dream, Darin 'CookieHead' Jenkins!
Can't put sponsorship on a lifestyle. Skateboarding is not the only facet of my life, so when sponsorship ended a new one began.
Doing well happy and healthy.
Still skate to store, not much more but I'll be back in LA soon, so look out for the East Coast rude boy... Big up all... Old school massive.
Good luck... Don't worry be happy.
I love skateboarding, but there just came a time when i wasn't enjoying it. Trying to fit it in between injuries and not really progressing, so I decided to go back to work and have it as a hobby again. Best decision of my life.
Post skatelife is awesome, still have most of my friends I made during the course of it all, and some of the best memories of my life. Wouldn;t change a thing. Now I own a skateshop called Slappy's Garage in downtown San Diego and am doing my part to keep skateboarding in the hands of skateboarders, help steer the local kids in the right direction and make sure they don't lose sight of the fact that when it's all said and done skateboarding is about good times and friendships not sponsorship and money.
Still trying to get out and skate a couple times a week and a comeback is definitely not gonna happen, things worked out just the way they should've, now I'm enjoying skateboarding and hopefully helping to.promote a positive scene in my city. Thank you Muckmouth for including me in this article and thank you skateboarding.
Well I guess I quit pursuing skating because of my chronic injuries to my left shoulder and right elbow. My shoulder and elbow used to dislocate all the time, I've dislocated my shoulder over 30 times and my elbow over 40 times! No exaggeration. Anyways, once Toxic went under, I skated for Assault Skateboards for a bit then just gave up on it. My body just kept falling apart and it became frustrating.
Life is treating me really well, I'm married going on 15 years now, we have a boy and three girls. I've come to a faith in God which has been life changing for sure! I guess if I miss anything it's the traveling, just seeing the world though skateboarding.
I still skate 2-3 times per week and love it. In recent years I started going to 'Slappy Sundays' in San Diego where a bunch of us get together and skate curbs and share our lives. It's sort of nostalgic to skate with a bunch of 30 and 40 year olds like we were 14 again. I've known some of them since we were teens. A good friend of mine and one of the Legends of SD, Jason Carney, opened a skateshop (Slappy's Garage) and flows me boards and what ever I need to keep me pushin. No chance of a comeback but I still love to push!
Thanks for asking and putting this together!
One of the many reasons I faded away is that I always wanted to have a family, and I couldn't see myself supporting my fam on a skate check. As we all know, skating was not as popular or lucrative as it is today. So I basically blew with the wind.
I miss my friends and all the free products. Post skating for me has been great. I have a beautiful family, great career, and true deen. I wouldn't trade my life now for anything.
I barely hop on my board these days. I have too many responsibilities to make a comeback. Besides I wouldn't be able to keep up with all of these ridiculous helicopter tricks. Haha! But for me skating is like riding a bike, I will never forget how to do it.
Back then: I think it was a little of both. I wanted to ride for another team at the time and I thought the grass was greener. I was making some moves and I thought it would work out in my favor. It did not. That, mixed with my attitude kind of sent me in a different direction. I've always been a positive dude, but I've been known to be extremely honest and outspoken. Most didn’t get it. It was a survival instinct and hunger I used to push myself. I think people that come from nothing understand it, but that still doesn’t make it right. My EGO and sense of entitlement grew and I got shut down real quick. I was a COOL guy. That didn’t get me very far. I learned from it. I grew into a positive man that appreciates the game a lot more now. Today: I still get a lot of support from 35th North skate shop, Supra shoes and I get a box every now and then from LRG. IT KEEPS ME BUGGED OUT HYPED. I love all the inspiration my homies give me. I think that is some real love. I'm far from the best skateboarder but I'm out here and I think people see that, and that counts for something. I am so grateful to be that older dude still playing in the streets and getting support. On the real, shit gets expensive so to get a lil relief on the pocket book for gear is such a blessing. I can’t put into words how grateful and inspired it makes me. Thank you Tony, Garrick and TY.
Yes, I miss travelling and being around friends and doing what we loved without the real world worries. I still do all of it to this day, except now I have to work and juggle responsibilities. Skateboarding will always be my first love, but dreams don’t keep the lights on. Post skating is treating me proper! I'm happy and I'm still skating. I have a corp gig Monday-Friday and started a small brand called Movement Skateboards. It's ultimately for the love and fun of skateboarding. It keeps the energy bubbling. I also consider Movement a conduit for the ones I believe in. Help them to follow their dreams. I have a small team I want and I want them to give it their best shot. So I am here to help them and keep them skating because it HELPS ME KEEP SKATING. It's funny because they probably think I am helping them when in fact it's them that help KEEP me moving. To be honest man, I'm having even more fun now than I was back then. Now I do all kinds of different things. I skate, I take photos, I film, I edit and I create. I back others and hope in some small way I am inspiring someone like minded to KEEP it alive. I try to be a part of it as a whole now. It's just so fun. Plus anything I can do to help support the next generation is that GOOD GOOD joint.
I skate a lot. I have had new parts and new footage and new photos but on a super low key level. I'm all about the underground vibe. As far as a come back? That dream sounds so amazing but the talent out there is mind blowing. Really I would rather be a team manager and motivate rather than try to make a comeback. I just have fun skateboarding and making creative things for Movement Skateboards with my big homies. I'm happy to be a part a skateboarding. Even if it’s a small part. I'M STILL HERE. I'M PROUD OF THAT. @movementskateboards - instagram http://vimeo.com/89382841 - movement homies. www.youtube.com/watch?v=bgncnz5IUsE - Joint that we did for my birthday. About time for part 2...
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