Posts Tagged ‘burton’

#Funemployment

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

Recently I, Czarek Leopold Kielbaski, was let go from my place of employment. I won’t go into what I did for work. That’s not important. What’s important is that I am here, for all of you now. Not even entirely sure why I was let go. Of course they explained their reasoning, but as I was getting the explanation, I was simply too busy worrying about how I’d be able to maintain my affinity for smoking marijuana, (even though pot is sometimes called “trees”, I assure you they do not grow on any…at least not around here), and totally missed what they said. What I did hear, loud and clear, is my boss say that he and I can both agree that me being let go was what’s best for both the company and me. REALLY!?! How is that possible, when no sooner than 20 minutes before he came to that conclusion, I was gainfully employed and getting paid? Now, all I faced was uncertainty.

Also, a part of me was holding in every bit of assholeishness™ towards my soon-to-be ex managers. I really wanted to let my true voice be heard, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned from my work experiences in this world it’s not to burn any bridges. That’s not to say I haven’t planted the C-4 at the critical load bearing structural points of said bridges, just waiting to go down in a flame of revenge.

All of what I said above is merely back-story and filler, not really too important. More just venting, really. I may or may not go out and find one of those “job” things we’re supposed to have. But in the meantime I’m collecting unemployment and will be typing out my thoughts on all things shred, sneakers, highdea, cinema, fruit snacks, music, fitteds, fast food, sports, oil paintings, geological, politics, Price Is Right, Illuminati, internet, gambling, booze, party, health, wood shop & errthang in between.

Had this happened in April or May I would have had to off myself, as I am not a fan of summer or my balls stretching so far from the heat that I accidentally sit on them. but seeing as it happened now, and winter is around the corner, I welcome this situation with open arms. I can’t see myself not capitalizing on the ability to play snowboards as often as possible and maybe even hitting up the casinos and putting a squaw or two through college with my loses. Well, maybe not college as I am no baller like that, but I’ll def be able to cover the costs of her books and Trapper Keepers & Lisa Frank accessories or whatever is in nowadays.

I was already here, albeit briefly before, and life intervened and I had no clue how to balance being awesome on the internet and chasing a career I didn’t really want. So, as I type this, eagerly awaiting the snow season’s true arrival, listening to the 80′s Pop station on Pandora and wondering what I’ll want to devour once I get lifted higher than the moon later tonight, know that I am excited for being back here. And maybe my boss was right…this is what’s best for me. Thanks.

-CLK

2012-74: Forum Dies Again

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

So word came down yesterday morning that Burton is pulling the plug on The Program (Forum, Special Blend, Four Square). It was interesting to see the different reactions from the industry and the community, those who are on the periphery. I won’t go as far as to say the community was outraged, but there was some indignation. Most notably has been the rise of #GiveForumToPeter. We’ll get to that in a minute.

First let’s go over some of the finer points. Forum was a company on the edge of collapse eight years ago. It had been horribly mismanaged, and had Burton not taken over, it would have most likely disappeared long ago. At the time there was heavy speculation that Big B was just going to turn it into a price point brand—Forum would be available at Costco, Sports Authority and Dick’s and any other masterjock big box. And in time they were, but so were Burton boards, and Gnu and Rome and Endeavor and heaps of Ski-board brands.

When Burton did take over The Program, they cited their desire to keep a pure snowboarding company in the hands of snowboarders. And they did that. They tried for eight years, which was how long the company existed independently, and it failed to be a strong element for their business.

Just like Analog Surf/Skate and a global Gravis brand, the Program was not driving enough sales. I don’t really find this surprising. When was the last time you saw a Forum board in the wild? When was the last time you saw someone wearing Four Square or Special Blend gear? I mean apart from the lanky, mock-nerd on the Big Bang Theory (Who watches that show?).

As for the riders, Peter Line will always have a place in history. Pat Moore, will always have New England gnarliness behind him and the Slayer promodel to his name. But the rest of the team, regardless of how talented they were, seemed to have a hard time building a buzz about themselves. Yeah, you might know their names, you might get stoked when you see them ride, but that has never really moved boards.

Graphics sell most boards. Guttershits ride Capita decks. Quarry pit partiers probably have a 4-year old Rome deck in their garage. Jibbers for jesus are most likely on Stepchild boards. And people who are kinda into snowboarding have Burtons. Forum never really found its niche (Hippies ride Niche). And its graphics were all over the place. Cartoony to fuckall and then Helvetica-ed DRUGS. It was the constant plight of “where does the brand fit in?”

Back when there was the Forum 8, they had staked their claim. But that team dissolved, and word got out about some really low-quality decks. It was a particular time and place in snowboarding. It’s happened to other brands as well—Ride, Shorty’s, O-matic. But trends come and go and those times are fleeting. The Big B overlords were never able to recreate it, but you can’t blame them for not trying.

So The Program’s time had come, twice now. It was an iconic brand and this is a good way to keep some value in the name. Ask yourself if you would rather see the brand go the way of Sims, Lamar or Morrow? To be truly sold out? At least Burton is giving it a proper burial this time.

But apparently the community of riders thinks Burton should give the brand to Peter Line. #GiveForumToPeter is ridiculous. First off, is Peter walking around thinking “I need to have Forum right now”? Maybe. Then of course there is the fact Burton paid for the name. Perhaps SellForumToPeter would be a better hashtag. That way he could sink a bunch of money into it, it would quite possibly fail again, and he would end up broke down in the end. I don’t know Peter’s financial situation, but I hope he’s not going to end up driving a snowplow or hustling tees at SIA. He came up in a time when snowboarders could actually make a few dollars. And if he played it right, I suspect he’s going to be alright. The same goes for Pat Moore.

Relax guys, you’ve earned it. Yes it sucks that your job is gone, but it had to be a pretty good ride, Right?

As for the rest of the team, I can only assume they are being supported throughout the season as well. If this is true, they are in a solid place. They have a season to start the sponsor hunt. It sucks. Job hunting always sucks. But really good riders are always going to end up somewhere. Maybe a couple of them can jump on the Yes or Slash teams.

2012-19 Deal With My Opinion Please

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

We’re gonna get real for a second. And I mean really real. We’re about to take it back to the get-go. Not that I want to. Fuck, I was over winter this year. I’m getting the bike all tuned up. Getting ready to  shred roots and dirt and leaves and pretty much just smell like Wolves in the Throne Room sounds.  But my bald friend, Colbish, sends me this and it’s all over.

http://www.complex.com/art-design/2012/02/the-50-coolest-snowboard-graphics-of-all-time#1

So naturally I flip through it and have gripes with way too much of it. We don’t have time to get up on all of it, so we are just going to address a few points.

  • This is about snowboard graphixxx, not snowboards, not snowboarders. Keep that in mind.
  • Where the fuck is the Dave Seone art?
  • Where the dix is the Ali Goulet rally car?
  • No blue girls? Srsly guys, do some research.
  • Also, no Capita decks? Not one? They have been atop the graphixxx game for a few years now. This is a fact.
  • #46 The explanation has nothing to do with graphics. Complex, please stick to your story for at least the first 10 entries.
  • #45 Is right on.
  • #39 Should be top ten. It’s the fucking Gonz, and it glowed in the dark.
  • #38 Remember this topsheet
  • #37. I forgot about this jawn. Twas great.
  • #27 They picked the worst Seven model ever. But given that this is Complex, their choice doesn’t surprise me.
  • #26 Well that is a dumb statement
  • #24 Go ahead and call the Atlantis logo simple. But remember that ornament is a crime.
  • #20 Another Brushie, but still not the the mainest Brushie. I’m really surprised his Ride pro-models didn’t make this cut. The one with the squirrel was crazed. Also the Ride Jenni Waara was from outer space, or Europe. Unsure.
  • #17 Wrong
  • #16 Right
  • #15 I found it interesting that this deck made it in but the Kemper Andy Hetzel didn’t. I like Salasnek, but Hetzel is still the World Champion. He at least deserves a nod here. Very similar boards. Now compare the topsheet of the Salasnek to #38. Now it seems double-double derivative. If it was, I’m not sure.
  • #11 Yup
  • #10 A type of classicness your mind cannot comprehend.
  • #1 Picking the Snurfer is a cop out. Dude should have just picked “all of them.”
  • Also, Lamar was so fucking thriller in the day. Szabo, Ranquet, Cardiel. Pull over, your brain is now in the broke down lane. Then there was the Jimi Scott chameleon board.
  • #22 was the wrong Balance to pick.
  • #32 and #7 are graphically speaking almost the same board and rather dull. Same with the Burton Mystery air and the CK air. Sure they are iconic boards, but more for their riders and what was done on them than what was printed on them.
  • No Twin Oujia or Two Girls? Pssht.