Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Virtuosity That Is Gonna Alienate the Real Skate Rats


Brandon Turner, with Richard Jefferson in tow, abruptly enters the meeting room, intentionally taking the focus off Lair and Reese's rather curiously questionable plans that which they intended for the Skatemental.

"HEY- B!" interrupts Reese innocently, as if Brandon's presence and participation in the emergency noon Mental meeting is of little or no consequence.

Immediately, from Brandon's Presence, an otherwise droll drop ceilinged room, had automatically taken a more heightened sense of reality. Seeing Lil B in person always was a bit surreal- he looked exactly like his modeling photos in his sponsor's ads. Brandon was always good copy to say the least, and just his presence alone made any real life situation seem as if one just landed on an unscripted scene for a hugely successful television pilot.

Larry Balma obviously taken a back, instinctively presses so he doesn't loose his footing in the meeting, "Lil B!- We didn't know you where gonna be here! I am- I mean we- both - that is both me and Janet, are huge fans!! We've been following your career for sometime now!"

"Uh- huh" says Brandon barely responding, looking forward at nothing in particular, non challantly fingering an obnoxiously long dreadlock that is long enough to drape onto the floor.

"Sorry I'm late- um, me and Rich got caught up at Lucio's" announces Brandon.

"Now worries, bro!- You didn't miss much, man- we- I mean me and Lair were just throwing some stuff around, just discussing with the sales team a couple of things..." said Reese defensively, with an unnaturally upbeat breeziness in his voice.

Brandon and Richard saunter out to the front row, while Brandon continues, " Yeah well, me and Richard have some things WE need to discuss. Might as well now that everyone is here. Yall don't mind, do ya?"

"No, I mean sure, Brandon! Whatever you say, man! I don't think Larry minds- you don't care now do you, Lair? We can always continue later." Reese nodding to Larry smoothly to segue into whatever Brandon had in mind. Reese secretly hoping Lil B didn't want to discuss what he thought Lil B wanted to discuss.

Brandon begins, not waiting for Larry's response as if Larrry's presence was of no consequence to anything he had inside of his head, his head which looked like it had a Komondor dog sitting on top of it: "I'm just under lot of pressure and I'm taking a lot of the heat on some stuff right now. People coming up to me asking :'Lil B- where are you gonna take the skate game? Lil B- whats next?' I'm tired of having no answers to give. I feel like professionally I've hit a brick wall. I've painted myself in a corner and I feel like I have nowhere left to go.I been thinking long and hard, maybe it isn't about the next big thing I switch hard flip, maybe people are gonna start to care more now HOW I switch hard flip- like maybe kids are gonna be more conscious of technique and attitude. I think kids are gonna get bored with virtuosity. I think its that same virtuosity that is gonna alienate the real skate rats- all these big tricks are kinda talking down to your everyday skater."

"That's very interesting, B- I never um quite thought of it that way!" applauds Larry superfluously.

Brandon continues- "I got to be true to myself. I think its safe to say that I've always kept it real.And no one knows that better than my fans! And I think- I know that's what the kids like about me the most. If I'm keepin shit real, then kids are gonna keep it real and in turn then other people because of them are gonna keep it real too. Like trickle down, ya know? Anyways Richard and me think its in my best interests for me to represent myself for who I truly am. If I can't be myself, I know its gonna touch my skateboarding. If I try to repress myself it's gonna show in my work- because like the art doesnt lie and shit. Like you know what I'm saying?"

"Um, yes Brandon we've talked out this before at great length, but I don't think Skatemental or er the general public will know how to handle your um, life style choices." responds Reese delicately.

"This aint a fuckin choice, this is how I was born! This is who the fuck I am!" snaps Brandon, with a surge anger that was waiting to be unleashed like a set mouse trap.

Brandon brushing the dreads away from the front of his face," If I can't come out of it with Skatemental- then maybe I'll come out somewhere else!"

Reese trying futilely to keep his poise, " Brandon let me remind you that you are still under contract with us. Look B, come on! Lets not have to go there. Lets figure this out! Lets work together on this!"

"There is nothing to work out! This is who I am. And you know If I still am under contract, if I was under a certain persuasion I could just not try as hard as I should and keep my keepin it real media to myself- to give someone else once my term expires."

"Legally everything you produce while you are under contract is owned by Skatemental!" said Reese without hesitation, because it was a statement he had practiced saying many times in his head- his better instincts fearing it would come down to this with Brandon.

"Well I can always skate blanks and you wouldn't know If I had gotten my footy covey while I was under contract or not. Maybe Ill keep the REAL shit to myself until another company like per say Element will let me express myself how I truly am."

Brandon adjusting his bandanna, "Kevin Ancell at Thrasher said he would publish my photos once my contract is up- Thrasher is from a friendly place like San Francisco and is more than happy to let me use them as a platform for me to come out. I mean, to come up."

Larry interrupting, seeing an immedaite opportunity butts in: " Look Reese, Little B -is obviously very serious.I think we should consider what he's saying. If Kevin Ancell is promising him a candid interview- I say B should just go ahead instead and do it in Transworld. It will be perfect! Ill even personally give Skatemental a couple extra pages of out ad space that acknowledges Brandon's um lifestyle - and the interview could even have a fold out poster with Lil B on it! "

Brandon liking what hes hearing causes him to abruptly start acknowledging Larry: " Well you know me being from down south and all- I have always been partial to Transworld."

"Lair, look I don't think Skatemental or er the kids and PARENTS would be particularly ready for the direction Brandon wants to take us in." pleads Reese.

"Well it doesn't matter what they think- we can spin it around however we want. It can all be done tastefully of course. Maybe get someone good to shot the interview- we could get Ari Macroplis to do the ad and the interview, make it look gritty like an Annie Leibovitz photo- so that they retain the same mood- have the same quality. No Reese, I think we might be tapping into a whole new market for alternative lifestyle! Maybe Brandon will influence kids who are like him but don't yet necessarily skate to go out and buy a Skatemental deck and start shredding!"

"That's what I'm sayin Reese! I'm talkin about taking it to the next level!"
said Brandon with excitement.

Reese actually seeming sensible for the first time in the meeting "Geez guys, I don't know about this one. This could be career suicide from B and for Skatemental. What if people aren't ready for this. I think something like this could unleash a giant shit storm."

"Don't worry about it Reese, like I said I can get a good photographer- maybe get someone famous and er um sympathetic to Brandon's cause to interview him. This could be a tremendous crossover in what we are doing! And think about Brandon's exposure index rating, it will go through the frickin roof! I think I'm with Lil B on this one, Reese- I think Lil B is on some next shit!"


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Houston, Texas
Be kind, because everyone you'll ever meet is fighting a hard battle.