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Posts Tagged ‘ESPN’

I wish I could live at x games

February 1, 2011 Leave a comment

I don’t really care which one, either Summer or Winter will suffice. This being my first Winter X, I am emphatuated, but Summer has my heart because the weather is more my speed and I love me some Pacific Ocean time. I could give up the LA portion of it for Aspen anytime because I feel LA tries too hard for the most part. I know that offends the LA crowd, but I cannot help but feel the city is just trying to be NYC with a palm tree/gangsta twist.

Dont get me wrong, I always have a blast, but its only because the X Games is there. Oh and my friends Sean and Red Brother. Those guys make it a good time no matter what city we are in. LA though is lost on me. Back to X Games. If I could live there, I may eventually have to have heart valves replaced from the adrenaline that courses through my vascular. Since living at the X Games is impossible, I just need to run the adrenaline circuit and follow around Red Bulls X Fighters, the ASP tour, and Rally America. Maybe that is the way to go.

These types of opportunities are too far a part and I need to get more of my adrenaline fill more often. Hopefully this can happen as I continue on the path to working with Adaptive Action Sports. They have provided so many opportunities to action junkies that are permanently disabled and to me. I cant wait to see where all this goes. AAS is going to be a game changer for our injured/wounded veterans and I am ecstatic that I get to be included in the building of it.

Ill miss you X Games. See you in late July, early August. Soon after landing in LAX, I will be on my way to one of my favorite places in the entire world. A place at the end of LAX’s main flight path where I can watch the planes come. A place that rhymes with Sin N Doubt. Check out my other love affair here, Ode to In-N-Out.

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winter x day 1

January 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Creds and a pass to all 4 mountains. Sweet

Sleep didn’t come easy last night. I wasnt quite sure why that was until I checked the thermostat in my room and it said 80! No wonder I didn’t sleep, I hung out in a sauna all night. Cant complain though because I got to see yet another sunrise and this time it was over the mountains of Aspen. I could barely see them as we rolled into town the night prior, but in the daylight these mountains are simply awe-inspiring. We are literally at the base of the mountain and within 10 minutes of the other four mountains that make up Aspen. The sun was shining yet again, lets call it bluebird and there couldn’t have been a better start for us at X.

Weather nice, credentials in hand, athletes organized, and schmooze mode on blast. We all are in agreement that there is no time for being starstruck here, this is the time to be able to reach out to these incredible athletes and spread the word of what Adaptive is up to. It started today with Sal Masekela of Stoked Mentoring and ESPN announcing fame. Amy announced with him at a previous X Games and Daniel had spoken to him several other times, but this was my first time meeting him. We talked about Stoked and then introduced him to AAS’s mission again and he seemed genuinely interested even recapping when KJ jumped the last booter on a mono-ski two years ago. He said that many people around the world felt that moment was the best at that particular X Games. That’s a bold statement when you have to consider the source and the insane athletic accomplishments that go on at each X Games like Shaun White’s domination of pipe.

Im in the back, can you see me?

Speaking of the Flying Tomato/Tomoto…we once again stepped up and introduced ourselves. I had met him at previous Games, but never really any conversation that amounted to anything until today. Amy spoke of AAS and the mission and Shaun smiled from ear to ear. You can tell why he is a fan favorite, its in his style, its in his flair. Cool kid. (I’ll apologize to my mom for not getting a pic AGAIN because she asks about him every time I come home from X. I’ll get a pic mom so you can have the Tomato in your house. And Chaz, my mini mato, thank God you are only 4 years old so you can’t read that I missed a chance for your autograph today. I’ll make it happen.) After that it was meeting Curt who founded Skate the Lake and then Barrett Christy, a pioneer in women’s snowboarding. A pretty amazing opening day for all I would have to say. Read more…

butte to aspen

January 25, 2011 Leave a comment

maybe winter isnt so bad

The altitude up here has been messing with my sinuses the entire time and I am not the only one. Everyone else is feeling dehydrated and stuffy. I feel like I have to work to breathe sometimes and sleeping has been harder than normal though I am more tired up here. Its like breathing soupy air, that’s the only way I can describe the feeling.

I can’t really complain when I think about what I have already done since being here and what I am about to get into tonight when we reach Aspen. We are all packed right now, the truck is warming up and we are almost ready to head out through this pass to Aspen. First is going to be a quick stop off in town to walk through some of the stores and then onward hoe. Another bluebird day here. If this weather keeps up, I may extend my travels for a couple months to really get into snowboarding the way it was meant to be. Winter sucks in general and I am notoriously bad with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), but who could be sad out here on days like these?

Tonight I get my first glimpse at Winter X!!! I am so thankful for these opportunities, the way I get to live my life right now, and for the people that I get to befriend along the way. Thanks to all those that help make this possible for me.

colorado in 4 days!

January 18, 2011 1 comment

BOOMTOWN!! This is my first trip out west for real powder on a real mountain. To be honest I am slightly intimidated, especially since I didn’t get to snowboard all last season because of a knee injury I sustained trying to skate in a pool that Tony Hawk skated in. He doesn’t get knee injuries, but I do. He’s a professional and the godfather of the sport, I just think I look good carrying a skateboard.

Im next out the door 14k feet over Oahu, yikes! (circa 2006)

Eight days ago I booked my ticket and now I am starting to get butterflies. Not because I am truly nervous, but because this is my first time being out in real deal snow conditions. Its my first Winter X Games too! it’s my first time hanging out with Adaptive Action Sports (AAS) since they formally asked me to join the AAS team. A lot of firsts here and this anxious excitement is starting to really get me pumped. I haven’t felt like this in a long time. I don’t even know what to compare it to. Kind of like looking down out of a small airplane that you are about to hurl yourself out of. That’s what I would liken it to. Not the jump itself, but the anticipation before you plummet 14,000 feet towards Oahu’s North Shore. I think I really hit the nail on the head with that one.

I don’t know what to expect, but I do know that I am ready for whatever lies ahead. I am ready to mark some of Colorado and the Rocky Mountains off my life map. I ready to get the ball rolling with AAS and connect them with the more than 40,000 wounded service members linked to these wars. I know that this year is shaping up to be the greatest of my life and its only 18 days into 2011. I never would have guessed that my 31st year would already be on track to being the most incredible 365 I have ever had. I know it’s too early to speculate, but something tells me this feeling is real. Read more…

IAVA to Bristol, home of ESPN

August 26, 2010 1 comment

Diddy style in the 'Lade

1306 – and we’re a blacked Escalade like Diddy on our way to ESPN studios to watch the taping of SportsNation (SN) where Dana White is being interviewed. Originally I thought this might have something to do with the Ultimate Fighter, but instead, and just as awesome, we are going to be in the audience for a live taping of SN. Pretty sick to be a part of this and to be considered a person that represents IAVA well. I like being considered for a short list of good people. Thanks IAVA.

On the way up, Katie showed me comp sheet (draft) of the JC Penney/Joseph Abboud shoot and I happened to see that I look pretty ridiculous on several accounts. There’s nothing I can do about it and that’s pretty much the epitome of my personality anyway I guess. Let it ride. The mailer looks great and comes out on 30 Sept with the full campaign starting up on 8 Oct. Hopefully we get to do something more with the official launch of the campaign. Everyone’s going to get a laugh out of me for sure.

1415 – We pull into Bristol, the Home of ESPN, and really

O Fish Shall, sweet.

nothing else but it seems to work. We run to a gas station for some quick turkey sandwich break out the back of the ‘Lade then onto ESPN HQ. Once at ESPN, we meet with the man behind SportsNation, Jamie Horowitz, a friend of IAVA. Jamie shows us through some of the campus and gives us insight to ESPN’s origin in Bristol. In the studio we are surprised to see “The Most Interesting Man in the World” who is there for promo spots of the show we are sitting in on. The buzz around this guy was unreal. Apparently Bob Lee was even excited and that guy has met and interviewed every major sports figure in modern sports. Read more…

squan to NYC for ESPN with IAVA (I like acronyms)

August 26, 2010 Leave a comment

Monday was a good lazy day as the weather was shat with overcast skies, wind, and big overhead waves. Since there was no chance to get into the water, I watched a Fantasy Factory marathon, went food shopping, did some studying, took a nap, and just had a chill day in general. I ventured up to Red Bank to have dinner with a friend, chat a little, compare hip-hop “it” songs of the moment, let her roommates cat out by accident, and then drive right back to Manasquan after.

I had just picked up the horror movie remake, the Crazies, from the local Red Box and was good to call it a night when my phone rang from a number I didn’t recognize. I answered and found that it was Cara Hammer, member of NYC’s local IAVA office. I had forgotten to fax my W9 for the Abboud shoot so I thought she was calling me as a reminder, but I was greeted with an invite instead. She asked if I was free to got to CT tomorrow, which is now today (Tuesday) as I have slept and am now on a train to Penn Station. She said they had a last-minute invite to the Bristol, CT compound that houses ESPN and we would be meeting Dana White, the President/brainchild behind all that the UFC is today. He’s actually an incredible story in himself as he took what was a washed up brawling league with no rules into the estimated $2 billion monstrosity that the UFC is today. Rags to riches stories just amaze me.

Time stamps will help in describing my day. All of this is written as it happened. Read more…

what IAVA has done for me

August 26, 2010 2 comments

In a previous post I had mentioned that the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) had helped me in many ways, but aside from helping me understand the very confusing and often head-scratching Post 9/11 Gi Bill, they have afforded me some really amazing opportunities. Check this out.

In Oct 2008, MTV hosted an event at the Nokia Theater called “A Night for Vets” where IAVA and MTV pushed a petition for the Bill of Rights for American Veterans (BRAVE). I took Nick to the concert where Ludacris, 50 Cent, G-Unit, Kanye West, Hinder, Saving Abel, Eve, and many others played. We had a great time jamming to the performers and talking to other vets that came out to support. It was an interesting way to raise awareness for a Bill of Rights specifically for those who had served and I was glad to be a part of it.

The next event I was lucky enough to attend was a pre-screening of the HBO movie called “Taking Chance” starring Kevin Bacon. This time I invited Jax along with me because I knew this was going to be something I could not handle alone. IMDb doesnt give this movie a strong enough summary so here is my stab at it. “Taking Chance” is based on the 2004 travel log of Lt. Col. Mike Strobl, who after his recommendation for action in the Iraq war is rejected, volunteers for escort duty of 19 year old fallen Marine Pfc. Chance Phelps. The story follows Phelp’s travels home from the battlefield to Germany and into Dover AFB where technicians work to bestow all honors due to Chance. His uniform is put to the exacting standards of the Corp and he is then turned over to LtCol Strobl who is charged with his safe transport to his final resting place in Wyoming. The film follows Strobl as he recounts every instance of his escorting Chance from the hearse ride to Philadelphia, the flight to Minneapolis, and finally by car to Phelp’s home in Wyoming all while describing the immense appreciation and gratitude the soldier is given as he comes home for the last time. Read more…