“Naming credit for this one goes straight to Kenton Smith. Can’t remember the exact details but I think we were at brass gap one night and he threw it out there. Since the video was taking forever, per usual, it seemed approriate. We skated brass gap and lit spots up a lot in those days, everyone was skating gnarlier shit and that was the unique spot everyone wanted to get a trick at. When I asked Max about the video, he remembered Robin ollieing the huge grass gap behind St Ann’s in Prarie Village. I then asked Robin, who said, “my most memorable moments were drowned in axe body spray, hamms beer, Old Spice body wash and the blue spot.” I’m pretty sure the first trick filmed for the video wound up being the last one in the video, Nick’s crazy late flip in Junction City. The last thing filmed for the video would be Clumsky’s ‘Through’ trailer. I stayed up all night before the premiere editing while he was drinking, then we banged out the first of many terrible trailers around 7 that morning. I was stoked to make a Let It Ride video to follow up ‘No Coast’ and ‘Constructive Destruction’ and it was fun to do it with all our friends from the KC and Lawrence crews.”
“What’s The Rush was my second video part, after putting so much pressure on myself in The Nicey Nice Nice Project with such a technical last trick hammer as the front board v bomb on OP flatbar, I knew I really had to step it up. I think I was 14 or 15 for most of this part, I remember a lot of the stuff being filmed in the summer right before the video came out. Lots of skating with Kenton, Rod, Abel, Sam, Robin, and then all those older dickheads like Mike Webb or Hackel. Just kidding guys! We all love Olathe! My favorite tricks are probably the bigspin front board on Santa Fe rail cuz it was just me n aaron at like 8 on a saturday morning to barge it. And then the 5050 on raytown rail cuz that was hella scary and like a week before the premiere. Just like a few other parts in the video, James Benjamin Clumsky picked out my song by The Bee Gees. I just remember rod always singing the words of the song when he’d see me. “This is where I came in, this is the danger zone!” Overall it was a good time and fun filming for this part, but boy is tension still high surrounding the controversy of Rod quitting Let It Ride right as the video was about to come out! Why Deems Why!”
– Max Chilen
“First I would like to thank my mother for letting me travel and basically live in KC to film this part and thanks to Aaron Chilen for driving my ass back and forth from Lawrence to KC every weekend… couldn’t have done it without them. Some of the best memories in my life are in this video. You may not notice but I was a haggard little kid in those days – basically I didn’t give a fuck. All I wanted was to skate and film as much as I could before returning to my borrring life in Lawrence. This video means a lot to me and Let It Ride is a part of my life forever. It sucks how everything ended up, but I probably wouldn’t have my two baby boys if it didn’t. Short and sweet this whole video is epic and there won’t be another like it. So if you don’t know now you know.”
– Kenton Muthafuckn Smith
These were the best of times, man. This section of Aaron Chilen’s epic video features Ernie Torres, Jason Jerousek, Mike Webb, Steve Palmerin, Nick Reynolds, Gabe Brummett, Scott Wingate, Kenton Smith, Justin Hackel, Robin Harper, Zale Bledsoe, Jeremy Raab, Max Chilen and myself.
“December 2001: Jason Jerousek, our then Let It Ride team manager, called a special meeting with team members Scott Wingate, Andy Messina, and myself. He wanted to have to have the meeting at Snow Creek, but we had to remind him that no legit dude from Kansas actually snowboards. So we moved the meeting to the Let it Ride shop off of 95th and Metcalf. When we sat down at the roundtable, Jason began lecturing us about how we didn’t skate enough transition, do enough grabs, and didn’t land our tricks sketchy enough for the local skate community to understand the difficulty of skateboarding. Humbly, and knowing our place, we seemingly acknowledged his criticisms and directives. It was then when Scott, Andy and I presented our own full-length video parts for the upcoming Let It Ride installment, What’s the Rush. Jason got pissed. He said the parts were too amazing and that they would bring too much international attention to us and the shop. He said that he wasn’t ready for that type of commitment. Then he burned like 6 and a half hours of raw footy and the video parts that A-Money filmed for us. Footy that include Andy switch frontside flipping the death wall (Penny style), Wingate flipping in, flipping in the middle, and flipping out of some grind-to-slide on a gap to ledge over rocks and lava (old man status), and my part including…….well, I won’t toot my own horn, but my part had rap music in it and intermissions of fine honeys in bikinis washing cars across from the Fast Stop by the Slabs. Jason frowned upon that. Jason demanded that we combine video parts with him and tone down our tricks. He also demanded to have the first part of this video part. He gave us like 10 decks each to keep our mouths shut. This part could have sprung Andy, Wingate, and I to stardom, but Jerousek was on that Hater-ade. SIKE!!! Andy, Jason, and Wingate are the homies for life.”
– Steve Palmerin
“It’s been a really long time since I’ve watched this one. Longer than any of the others, I think. The VHS copy I had of “What’s The Rush?” disappeared years ago. I guess the first thing that comes to mind while watching this is “The Jelly Bean.” That was the white 1991 Toyota Previa van I had inherited from my parents (nicknamed by Robin). A pretty sweet ride, really…you could squeeze at least 7 people in that thing…and we did. More sometimes. I’m pretty sure I’m 16 in most of this footage, Robin would have been about 15. We were just starting to be able to drive ourselves around to spots and explore Kansas City on our own, often times with a camera, courtesy of my girlfriend at the time. See that intro sequence goofiness? That was us all the time. It was great. I have some hilarious footage on a VHS somewhere (probably lost) of us doing the silliest shit and just having fun skating everything we could. I remember a lot of really fun DIY spots in these days, most of which never made it to film. It was more about exploring and creating and having a good time rather than seriously trying to make a video part. Though we were serious about it. Most weekends were spent at The Mansion, sleeping over, filming, fucking around, going through puberty…the good stuff. Robin and I used to go to Corporate Woods late at night and run from the security guards. We would hide out, spot their car and just start running…and they would chase us! For no reason. Awesome. Most of the Let It Ride team also worked at the shop so it was always fun to go out after work and try to film stuff. Jason Jerousek and I would do that a lot, just the two of us. I think a few things I filmed of him made it to his part. Those were good times.
When I watch this part now, I think this is really Robin’s part with me just filling some stuff in. Kickflip over the death wall, frontside flip over the Wesco 9 rail, that huge ollie at the end…fucking gnarly!
I can’t think of much more to say. Good times, buddies. Good times. Glad to have been a part of it.”
“This was some of the raddest times I’ve had skating. I got to meet the KC crew then Tim and Cynthia let me stay at the mansion to skate KC! I made it in the friends section with the homies and so did Bartlett Square Plaza in Tulsa (RIP Bartlett). Special shot out to Seth Rivers – without him I never would have made it to KC to meet everyone!”
– Ernie Torres
Recalling these memories has been a treat. I was extremely lucky to have wound up at the right place and the right time to be a part of Let it Ride. Thanks John. I took filming this part very seriously, and ended up with a lot of footage. So much so that Aaron considered calling the video “j.p. redmon’s wonderful, horrible life” (Look up P.J. Ladd’s debut video if you don’t get that). I quit KU after my freshman year to go on tour with my band, Podstar, and then quit Podstar to skate (this was really hard for me to do, and I felt extremely guilty for it, which is partly why I chose this song, written by Cameron Hawk). Eating ramen with an egg (I think I got that from Aaron Chilen actually), mowing grass at KU, a data entry job, and “donating” plasma kept me afloat during these times. The Tulsa trips were fun as hell – I was right at home with that metal park (I got used to a land full of ARC parks, unfortunately) – Pete, Ernie, and Hutto ruled that place. So did Seth Rivers – thanks for the hospitality brother. The best trip was the one in Nick Reynolds’ van though. We were just getting started when Nick rolled his ankle badly in Junction City (after he got that insane fakie inward heel late flip – the last trick in this video). This was our first stop. He still wanted to do the trip however, driving the whole way on a bum ankle, and wouldn’t take no for an answer. Your kindness, your pop, and your deep bag of tricks are baffling to me my friend. Skating Colorado, LA, and SF was possible because of you. I didn’t even have enough money to be on that damn trip… I must thank Kevin Barnett as well for getting me into 411 VM. I understand that the whale spin down the big slant was considered for an opener in issue #49, but I “didn’t have a name yet” so it didn’t happen. Politics, man… But that and the gap to crook were the only two slow-mo’d tricks in the “chaos” section, so that was rad. Basically I put everything I had into this video part. I gained solid flow from DC for a number of years through it (thanks again, John). Arcade, Alycium, and Killing Machine treated me well too. And Navigator trucks, haha, don’t forget about that one, Ernie. I had all this momentum going for me but I didn’t know what to do with it – maybe I didn’t make friends with the right people… maybe I wasn’t social enough. I thought having a decent video part was enough, but it’s not. On October 1st, 2003, I broke my ankle terribly from skating when I was too tired (*kids, DON’T DO THAT. That’s when you get hurt, and it’s usually on something routine). In life, you always wonder what could have happened and are constantly surprised by things that do, but if you’re lucky you find a way to deal with it. I’ve got a plate in my ankle and have been through a lot to get to where I’m at today, but I’m happy to say I’ve still got skateboarding in my life and I’ll always have this video part to remind me what the “top of my game” looks like. Thanks, Aaron.
“I have put off writing an intro to this video part for Heeeps for some time now. What’s the rush? I’m at a different level of things in life now but I look at life like I do skating: it’s because of not ever being satisfied, staying hungry, and because of a certain commitment, determination, and balls to keep getting better and better until your body physically can’t do it… and that is how I feel about this part. I never have been satisfied with this part and wish I could have gotten at least half of my clips I had written down in my journals, but my ankles had other plans. But then again if I had gotten satisfied with anything involving my skating or life I wouldn’t have made it very far. When I joined the team at Let It Ride I took a lot of heat for it. It didn’t have the greatest reputation or reflect much of my personality – nor did our city – for having a positive, friendly, good scene. When traveling around people would often hear I was from KC and mention to me that they heard those KC skaters were rude, snakes, and very cliquish. Since I dealt with this growing up, when kids and peers started having respect for my skating I had it in my heart to be cool and humble to everyone no matter their skill, hood, or age. I feel the time of this video being made was a changing of tides for KC. It was a real special time in this city (area) and skating was booming here and world wide like I had never seen before in the end of the 80’s or 90’s. I always hoped that being as cool as possible to anyone with that many young kids starting up out of everywhere would be a small influence on how they would treat others when they grew to be my age and someday my city would have a sick positive scene, a different rep, and different friendliness than it had when I grew up skating here. I think if you know much about skating and KC you know where the future played out a decade later and with many others being rad people our city has probably the best scene in the world for skating and some of the best skaters with the most heart. I wanted my video part to have some gnar, tech, pop, wallie madness, style… not an all-one-trick-clips part, and to keep it street. But I probably set my standards too high to be satisfied or film a very long part. It was never my intention to even write about my skating or this part but I just want to express that I hope it helped play its part to build our city’s scene, show how diverse skaters are here, and to inspire creativity by the wheels for the future.
Sorry for the lame ankle damages on trips Aaron.”
– Nick Reynolds
And this concludes the epicness.