Vert brigade, jacked germs, and Florida folklore.
Vert brigade, jacked germs, and Florida folklore.
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author! author!

Hmm. Not sure why I stopped at two author exclamations for this particular post title, because there are, as y'all should know by now, a total of four found under our reading rainbow from last year. So: Author! Author! And, now that I've come mathematically correct in this literary sense, I'd like to pointlessly ponder, "Why on god's greenish earth didn't I write a post about this series when it mattered?" With regard to the original release, I mean, because the sentiment itself—the reading of books—is a timeless necessity to being a functional human engaged in the day to day struggle of life. Or at least it once was, I suppose, considering the last several years have seen a bizarre anti-cultural movement seemingly hellbent on the decline of western civilization. How so? Through a belligerent denial of science, facts, history, and maybe even the very concept of reality itself. Why so? Fuck if the fuck I know. Never would've ever expected to see such a willful and giddy regression to the dark ages of ignorance and a song-and-dance two-step away from the next Grand Inquisition, but here we all are, fazed and bemused on the farcical edge of some fanatical dimwit's flat earth crusade.

Ahem. But yes, now I remember exactly why I didn't write anything here about our "authors" series back then: An acute and mostly crippling sense of self-inflicted "I Read Books" awareness; or, in other words, coming off like a preachy chump. The good lord knows there's already an overabundance of those corner-yellers out there, but the hard truth of the matter is that there are a good many other books out in the world that could use way more thumping than that which is commonly touted as The Book. Anyway, make of that what you will, but we went ahead and made what we did: A series of four boards dedicated to a few of our favorite authors, notably speaking, Hunter S. Thompson, Kurt Vonnegut, James Joyce, and Charles Bukowski. To do so, we leaned on our stalwart StrangeLove pals Todd Bratrud and Dave Carnie, but then jumped newcomer Andy Jenkins into the mix because who better than a fellow San Pedran to creatively sound off on the madness of Uncle Buk?

I've said it before, but I'll happily repeat myself ad nauseam: I wouldn't be the person I am today if it wasn't for the investment of time I'd made in the words of Vonnegut, Bukowski, Richard Brautigan, Terry Southern, John Fante, Jean-Paul Sartre, and many, many authorial others at a critical point in my early '20s. Even though I'd spent a good deal of time on the streets with my skateboard, I was rather naive and not so wise about the broader world (read: life) around me. And most if not all of my formative reading as a kid revolved around sci-fi, fantasy, horror, and murder monster mayhem—abject escapism, in other less kind words—so I was considerably stunted in terms of my intellectual development and interpersonal skillset. Fortunately, I made some great friends who made some equally great recommendations, and once I migrated out of those sordid, musty aisles of the used bookstore into more grounded literary rabbit holes, well, it was about as Come to Jesus for me as Jesus can possibly come. Life suddenly made much more (and much less!) sense than ever before. I embraced all these new perspectives with full blown Born Again fervor, which, I guess, somewhat explains my happiness to turn around and push the literary love on anyone else around me whether they want to receive the good words or not.

So again, why all this now? Well, rest assured it's not because my fingers are idle; in fact, they're supposed to be involved with other much more important and pressing work at the moment, like this little thing called decorating the course for the upcoming Tampa Pro Street & Vert contest on April 4–7 at the Skatepark of Tampa while simultaneously trying to stay on top of all the mounting graphic deadlines Nick keeps slotting into the schedule for 2024. But, fuck us if we hadn't went ahead and made a partial restock to our boards about books and the soft goods that accompany them, so there’s that to promotionally deal with. In other words, something had to be done… and I guess this is it? I mean we already made shit ton of bookmarks and a scholarly zine by Carnie, so what the hell else was left to do. —Sean Cliver

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  • Fd on

    Fedsmoker called. He wanted me to tell you to keep up the good work and that he loves that Hunter S Thompson deck.

  • StateSideSteve on

    I love the Great Author deck collection. But I believe you may be missing one:


    Sorcery. Magic. Other Dimensions. And it’s REAL! I recommend THE FIRE FROM WITHIN if you are new to him.

  • Jackie Dunston on

    It’s sad to see the decline of western civilization but expect nothing less from a country divided by rich good for nothing politicians and religious leaders. Love for all because divided we will fall.

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