Phelps unleashed a few colorful insights on Thrasher’s “Skater of the Year” issue, what he thinks about culture’s current appropriation of his beloved sport, and whether skating should even be considered a subculture in the first place. Here are some of the highlights.
On fashion and pop culture’s current love affair with skate culture:
“We don’t send boxes to Justin Bieber or Rihanna or those fucking clowns. The pavement is where the real shit is. Blood and scabs, does it get realer than that?”
このJustinが着とるTHRASHERのやつ可愛い欲しい@justinbieber @thrashermag pic.twitter.com/HVj4bUnYtP
— ☁ ナオ ☁ (@Belieber_fn) September 25, 2016
On who gets chosen as Skater of the Year:
“I’m not gonna give the award to some Johnny-come-last-month, flavor-of-the-week guy.” Instead, Phelps is more interested with focusing on how hard a skater works, in quality versus quantity. What he calls, “services rendered.”
The man himself, Jake Phelps.
On Thrasher‘s aesthetic:
“No one can tell the magazine what’s cool. Anybody can cover a hard trick in the Mountain Dew contest,” says Phelps. “We don’t cover all that crap.” Instead, Thrasher dictates what they think is cool through, as Hypebeast states, a “complex, antiestablishmentarian worldview informed by years of living outside the law in a drug-addled, pre-tech San Francisco.”
On whether skating should be considered a subculture:
“It’s just skating. The best people I ever met were skaters. You skate, I skate–that’s great.”