You are a citizen of the United States, but you are also a citizen of the world, and there is a difference.
It’s scary that the rest of the world looks at our American mentality and they take notes and think that is what they need to be doing. We have been such a successful nation, but in reality, we might be the worst people they could be taking notes from.
If you look at the world as a high school lunchroom, we’re like the jocks, the cool kids, and then the Japanese are the nerds.
Okay, we might be getting a little too far ahead of ourselves with the generalizations. But we started this whole business bullshit and global economy initiative. The whole world right now is how can we make the cheapest product and sell it for the most money. That is American business. The same thing goes for the prison system, the medical system, the education system and basically everything. Business in this world is really fucked right now. We ship all this manufacturing business overseas, give people small wages, and treat these people like shit. Then they send this stuff back and we charge as much as we can for it. That is so backwards. It’s humans using other humans and we are all just getting lazier and lazier. Yesterday my dad and I were talking about who he was taught were the most important minds in this world. Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, all these people that invented things we use so frequently that we don’t even realize that we are using them. In reality, these might be the people who made the worst discoveries in the history of mankind. In the last 200 years this planet has changed faster and in the worst ways than it ever has. How did that happen in 200 years? Now, every single person relies on computers to make any decisions. Eventually, you’re not going to need a brain, because your computer is going to be your brain. Your iPhone is becoming your brain. What’s the point of learning anything if you have all information in the world at your fingertips? It gives me anxiety to think where we are headed, honestly.
You said Japan feels like one of your homes. What other places make you feel that way?
I feel at home almost anywhere because with snowboarding, regardless of where you’re traveling, that’s what you’re doing. I go to Russia and I meet up with kids that are the same age as me, that have lived the same life as me, skating, snowboarding, partying, having friends, traveling around, going on road trips, camping…but they just happen to be from Russia. Being born in America does give me more opportunities. I want to do something positive with those opportunities. Right now that’s being a professional snowboarder, but I want to do more than that with my life. I want to evolve that into working on something positive for humans rather than becoming another drone of society. I want to change the system rather than fall into it.
Maybe this 50-50 front 270 to switch front board is so clean because Forest did it on a set of bleachers Nagano, Japan. P: Huggy
I see our hanging out in three different states in three weeks as an example of snowboarding itself being a home.
My dad always equated it to being on tour with The Dead, where you don’t see someone for two weeks but then you all link up at a show and it’s a party. Then you leave and do your thing but you know you’re always going to go back to that family, your group, your community, every couple weeks. Snowboarding is the same. All throughout the winter, everybody is busy going on their solo missions, doing their thing, but you know that you are going to meet up with 200 of your friends at some event in three weeks or so.
You’re 23 and have lived in Vermont, Lake Tahoe and Colorado and now you’re working on laying down roots in Portland, Oregon.
You say laying down roots, but in reality I know maybe 20 to 30 people here because I travel all the time.
And they all snowboard.
I have been making an effort to try and meet people with other interests because I don’t want to talk about snowboarding and skateboarding all the fucking time. But I do. I think about it all of the time, but it’s nice to be able to talk about other issues in this world. It’s cool to do art, because maybe someone sees that I snowboard and do art, and that I have all of these other thoughts besides snowboarding. When I was a kid, all I thought about was snowboarding. Now, I think if I had some other interests my life could have gone a different way. I’m really happy that it went the way that it did, but it’s cool to test out a lot of different things and see what else you’re interested in.
And the downtime healing from your injuries has given you more time to pursue other interests.
If definitely has. If I were skating all summer, I probably would have created one-fifth of the things that I did. I really like doing art and art is such a broad thing. It’s just like skateboarding and snowboarding. There are no rules. There are no limitations. Whatever you think of, you can make.
Do you feel the same satisfaction when you’re painting as when you’re snowboarding or skating?
Not quite yet, because the difference for me is being active. I can sit down and paint for seven hours but I’m not going to be tired at the end of the day because all I did was sit there. When I go skateboarding or snowboarding, I do that for an entire day and I come home and all I want to do is pass out. I love that. This summer, not being as active as I usually am has been really hard.