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james gandolfini puts a hit out on cancer

sopranos star james gandolfini is a huge supporter of The OctoberWoman Foundation – a foundation for breast cancer research.  brianna commerford (who is super energetic, full of life and totally hilarious) is a childhood cancer surviver and ambassador of Hope and Heroes Children’s Cancer Fund.  The OctoberWoman Foundation is teaming up with Hope and Heros for a benefit called Celebration of Hope to raise money for Hope and Heros.  for info on the Celebration of Hope event go HERE or to donate to the cause go HERE.  thanks to mr. gandolfini for being so cool and so dedicated to The OctoberWoman Foundation – and thanks to brianna commerford for being such an energetic, cheerful ball of awesome.

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world cup 2010 in madrid

so my friend monte isom is a photographer and he’s always got something up his sleeve.  dude kills it behind the camera and his hustle skills are just as strong.  on thursday the 8th of july i got a call from monte saying he had a plan in the works.  the next day i was on a plane bound for the netherlands.  after hanging with customs in amsterdam for six hours or so, and after BARELY making it through with our gear (that’s a crazy story within itself), i rendezvoused with monte and hung for the night.  we chilled with some of monte’s rad amsterdam peoples and afterwards got some waves, winks and kisses blown at us while on a walking tour in the red light district.

don’t take pictures of the ladies – they get pissed

instead of hookers, we got french fries.  they were a lot cheaper and less likely to have STD’s.  by that time it was like 2 am, and the women of the night would stroll in and out of the deli in-between clients to order their usual meals – and it totally made me giggly when one of the ladies ordered a hot dog.  i got two hours sleep that night and the next morning i was on a plane to madrid.   monte’s plan was to photograph the world cup fans in the public viewing areas.  he would shoot in amsterdam, i would shoot in madrid and we’d put the pictures side by side to have a fans showdown.  my plane landed in madrid and i went straight from the airport to the hotel – and then straight to the plaza de colon

one of the many public viewing areas packed with excited futbol fans.  i was kinda loopy from no sleep, but the energy of hundreds of thousands of people crammed together kept me goin.  here’s what we got: at the end of the second half, the score was 0-0.  when overtime kicked in, tension was thick.  the ball would get close to spain’s goalie and everybody would start freaking out – then the ball would get close to the netherlands’ goalie and everybody would scream at the top of their lungs.  it was back and forth for probably 10 minutes until spain scored.  the crowd went totally bonkers.  it was insane.  completely insane.  for the last few minutes, the tension got thicker and the responses got more excited.  when overtime ended and spain was still in the lead, the whole city of madrid LIT UP.   it was spain’s first world cup win and the most important futbol victory in spain’s history.  consider this: in america we have baseball, we have (american) football, and we have basketball.  some like one, some like another, some like none.  we have no unified sports pride.  but in spain (like a lot of other countries) the elderly, the middle-aged, the teenagers and the kids all have a dedicated love for futbol.  so you can imagine that when spain won, the city went bananas.   TOTALLY – BANANAS.  people were yelling, people were jumping, people were hugging and crying, and everybody was happy.  i ended up in the middle of a public fountain dance party with about 20,000 happy spaniards. it was an unbelievable night and i can’t believe i was there to watch it all go down.  the noise that tore through the city when spain won was the same noise that was still blasting when i went to bed at 5am.  i got up 2 hours later and was pretty delirious, but managed to fumble my way to the airport to catch my flight.  i must have been in a time warp because i got to nyc 5 days before my checked luggage.

me post public fountain dance party

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chris cole is pretty much amazing at skateboarding

years and years ago, back when i was on fiveboro – we were doing a demo at a skatepark in philly and there was this guy there who was completely annihilating everything.  i was like, “yo, who is THAT?”  and somebody said, “that’s chris cole.”  i don’t think i’d ever seen anybody skate that consistently.  he was like a machine that was pre-programmed to get awesome.  that was probably 8 years ago?  i’ve ended up skating around him a few times since and it’s still the same story.  the dude’s dials go to 11.

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mike laird

couple years ago i was a carnie in the alaska state fair.  well, kinda.  i was skateboarding in keith king’s bmx stuntshow for 3 or 4 shows a day for almost two weeks, i think.  that junk was fun, man.  they were long days, but man they were fun.  after a long day of shows, we’d all go back to our cabins and sit by the campfire till the wee hours then wake up and do it again.  mike laird was one of the crew.  the guy rips.  he’s got such a smooth style.  he kept to himself a lot, but never failed to throw in a zinger to make fun of the girls that some of the crew dragged to the campfire that night.  he’s a genuine kind of guy, and i like that about him.  no frills and no fake smiles or any of that bullcrap.  you can even BE mike laird if you play any of the dave mirra video games.  creepy.  mike still rides for mirraco and you can check out his profile HERE.  turn up the slayer.

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bmx king dave mirra

’bout 10 years ago these two dudes opened up a bike/skate park near my hometown in wilmington, nc called eastwood. one of the guys was don – he could do backflips on a scooter (and not a stupid razor scooter, but the real deal, big-boy scooters); and the other guy was dave, a nice guy who completely destroyed the park on his bike. and that was that. for weeks, maybe 6 weeks, he was just dave – some really nice random destroyer.  turned out that his name was dave mirra, and it turned out that dave mirra was a huge name in the bmx world. and it turns out that 10 years later his name is even huge-er. so when we met up for our shoot, we had a little reminisce-session about yesteryear and the old eastwood park in wilmington. it was good to catch up and i’m glad that dave is still destroying it.

check out dave’s site HERE

dave was telling me that he was doing rally car races now and showed me pictures of his car.

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