|LEGAL DISCLAIMER: What you are about to read is of ambiguous
origins. Please understand that none of the following words should be taken
seriously, as they are most likely complete works of fiction. Any similarities
between the companies and people listed in the Beast and the snowboard industry
in general is purely coincidental.
Normally we try and be clever with the information we throw up in here.
This time, however, we've decided to forgo the witticisms in exchange for
mas informacion but we still came up short. Too bad. The following is a mess
of stuff we've run across in the last month. Enjoy.
At the San Diego Zoo some of the monkeys have their own island. This is pretty
common for zoos, I guess. But the thing that always gets me is that the monkeys
on the island pretty much mind their own business. They go about their day
doing what monkeys do: eating bananas, making more monkeys, and swinging
around. They're happy and they don't bother anyone.
Then there's the old grumpy monkey in a cage by himself. He's been on the
island before, but he didn't get along with the other monkeys. So they put
him in a cage all by himself. He's got a tire hanging from a chain and a
bit of a jungle gym. But that's about it. So what does he do all day? We'll
he sits and throws feces at whomever stands close enough to the cage. At
the San Diego Zoo they've even put Plexiglas on the cage to keep the bio-matter
in where it belongs.
Why are we talking about caged monkeys in a snowboard zine? Well, here at
the Beast we're that old grumpy monkey all alone in a cage. And you know
what? So far, no one has put up any Plexiglas. A couple words of warning:
you better stand back because the second hand bananas are about to fly.
Don't say you weren't warned.
"Update the Beast you lazy f#*$." --Northwest Shop Owner before his morning
"I'm going to do a big web site. On theng screen it's going to say,
'TURN OFF YOUR COMPUTER AND GO OUTSIDE.'" --Eric Kotch, unemployed
industry player and soon to be marketing director of Reef Shoes. (But you
didn't hear it from us.)
"Ride's Terry DiLeo is the newest offender of that over-used phrase,
'I want to make sure we're both on the same page.'" --Someone at Ride.
"So tell me, how do you make money with this?" --The number one question
from snowboard industry marketing directors.
SIMS BOTHELL BRO-JOB
<Try saying that five times fast.>
Sims dropped big money bringing retailers to Bothell, Washington for
a fascinating tour of their new warehouse. Reports smuggled out of the building
say the warehouse is very big and rectangular, like a warehouse. One prominent
East Coast b-boy was reportedly flown out at an airfare cost of $1,800 dollars.
For what? Well, to be told by the new Sims brass that, "Well, we're the new
guys, and we just came in this past April, so don't hate us and don't blame
anything from this season on us, yet."
Heavy hitters from So Cal, Nor Cal, Virginia, Canada and Bend were flown
in, put up in Bothell's finest hotel and encouraged to injure themselves
on very fast go-karts. You know, the kind that make lots of noise and go
really fast and you've always seen them but never had a chance to drive one
Following the Sims happy-fest the marketing department asked some of the
bigger retailers to spend an entire next day (breakfast, lunch, and dinner)
telling Sims management what they think of the people and the product. Isn't
that what writing orders is for?
RIDING THE STORM OUT
This list of random Ride happenings probably wouldn't look nearly
so random if we had any idea what was really going on up there:
Circe Wallace is our
Ride Inc. poster child
for this month's Beast.
We just couldn't get
enough Ride in here.
(Photo: Mark Gallup)
Bob "Gumby" Gundrum, former Ride sales manger is gone. When told of
the news a local retailer asked why, and was told "creative differences"
between Gumby and Tim Hall.
But shortly thereafter, Tim Hall was gone.
The most recent "resignee" was former Ride President Tim Pogue. Of
course, it's in Tim's best interest not to say anything regarding the issue
because he's still a pretty large stock holder, but someday we'd like the
real story. We're bummed for Tim. No matter what, Tim did a great job of
positioning Ride Snowboards in the market and the world and for that he deserves
props. Now he just has to wait until his two-year non-compete clause ends.
The Ride staff was especially disappointed to see Tim go, so on the Thursday
after his resignation around 40 past and present employees and friends gathered
at the Log, a biker bar in Issaquah, Washington for a last hurrah on the
company card. "They just ripped the heart out of it all," said one employee
over a plastic cup of microbrew. "But instead of having a funeral we're having
an Irish wake to celebrate it all." Someone put up a huge Ride Snowboards
banner that had been altered with duct tape to say "Ride Sucks." And if that
wasn't enough the crew managed to get themselves kicked out of the bar within
three hours leaving broken glass in their wake. The Ride legend continues.
Meanwhile, back at the Securities Exchange Commission, Ride insiders filed
to sell 237,989 shares during the last two weeks of August. Those selling
include: Elaine Salter, Robert Marcovitch, The James Salter Family Trust,
The Kenneth Finkelstein Family Trust and Michael J. Hall. The largest
single filing was by the James Salter Family trust which filed to sell 141,000
which has a street value of about $1.7 million dollars. Yum. Money.
Then, surprise, surprise Jamie Salter and Mr. Finkelstein "resigned" from
the board of directors and Jamie bought C.A.S. (which he sold to Ride
during the summer of '95) back from Ride. Okay, a show of hands: how many
think Jamie paid less for C.A.S. in 1996 than Ride originally paid him in
In final Ride news, the company had a huge factory blow-out sale on the weekend
of September 22. Rumor has it they sold all of last year's product for at
extremely good prices to a list of invited friends? With friends like that,
who needs retailers.
BOKS, the action sport shoe brand by Reeboks is down for the
count. Just as the company was beginning to make inroads in skate and snow
culture the main office pulled the plug. See, it's really not that easy for
the big guys to swoop in and do much damage. But that probably won't stop
Gray market: Someone reported that stores in the Northeast are selling large
numbers of boards for 10 percent over wholesale. Peanuts! One Northwest exporter
claims to have purchased 300 boards from one store at eight percent over
cost. What a deal.
Mervin Mfg. is talking about boycotting the Salt Lake City SIA show,
and taking their top 20 retailers on an all-expenses paid bro-job to somewhere
warm. Hmm, how is the weather in South Central this time of year? Did someone
Clothing being shipped from the Far East is close to being in trouble thanks
to quotas and production snafus. Some companies (we're not naming names)
still haven't received their softgoods from China and shops are beginning
to wonder if they'll have anything for their racks come the Holiday Season.
This is really old, but Raul Reis from Special Blend broke
his foot. That hasn't slowed him down much. He was rumored to be shopping
for a snowboard manufacturing facility in Oregon. Let's see, there's those
Four Colored Squares guys and then there's the guys from that company
who is losing people in mathematical proportions. What could be going on?
Are they building a forum with film maker?
Burton has a new vice president and director of marketing now that
Dennis Jenson is V.P. of Business Development. Peter Nalen
comes to Burton after working for Proctor & Gamble, Johnson and
Johnson, and a small advertising firm in New Jersey. Well, if you know
anyone who needs to sell a whole lot of soap be sure and let Peter know.
Bruno Musso is the latest addition to the Burton baby-sitting squad.
He will be assisting current team manager Barry Duggan in filling
former team organizer Eric Kotch's shoes. Musso comes from the Big
Apple and used to own Shut Skates in da city. He also worked at
Blades and did a stint with Twist.
Ben Pruess, who was Airwalk team manager for nearly five months,
has left the company. Looks like the shoe giant is without a team person
for now. Ben has something up his sleeve however, and we think it has something
to do with really warm construction equipment, but we won't tell.
Cheryl Lynn left her So. Cal repping position with Swag, Movement,
and Vans to become the new marketing director at Hooger Snowboards.
Does this really mean Cheryl is leaving the bro-brah streets of sunny Cardiff,
Cali for the star-studded trout streams of Ketchum, Idaho? Hope she knows
how to tie flies, name clothing lines, and round up teamriders. That will
come in real handy up there in Ideeho.
Trey Cook is on board going to Europe. He, Steve Veytia, and
Dave Mailman will be setting up European arm of Switch
Manufacturing. They're looking for a home and it looks like it may be
Chamonix. Damn. What an office. Can we visit?
Sims Sports, Inc. has named Steve Dewar as General Manager
of Sims Snowboards in Canada. He was the Canadian sales manager. Now he's
a general so you'd better salute him.
Jeff Ingram, former Wrench and Magnus Corp. designer, was art
directing a skin mag somewhere, however, word was he was getting pretty jaded
looking at all those lay-outs and is now doing some freelance outerwear designing
Eric Kotch former Burton promotions person and industry playboy, has
finally landed a desk job. Expect to find him at the helm of the Reef
marketing department starting December 1, 1996.
What's up with Miki Keller and Morrow? The official word is
that she's "cutting back on her hours in the office and doing some work from
home." The unofficial rumor is that she's leaving, but she'll continue to
"consult" with the company. Does this have anything to do with the motocross
magazine that she and companion Matt Schlingman are conjuring? We
In Other Morrow News: Ex-Morrow teamrider Chis Owen is now
Morrow's Team Manager which will free Matt Schlingman up to focus more on
Morrow promotions (and possibly the motocross magazine he's doing with Miki).
His bio says Chris is a graduate of the OHSU School of Massage so grab those
bottles of oil and line 'em up.
Mark Sanders and his associate Tim Norton are the Southern
California-North reps. Mark has repped for over twelve years and currently
handles Wintersteiger and Superfeet in addition to the Sims line of boards,
boots, bindings, outerwear and accessories.
Mark Overbye and Jeff Thayer are now repping Sims in the Midwest.
Their territory covers WI, MN, IA, ND, and SD.
Greg Swierz is the new Northwest sales rep for Nice skate shoes
out of NYC.
INJURY HURTS REDUX
K2 Team Manager Dave Billinghurst recently had knee surgery
and is looking for a nurse. Anyone interested in volunteering for the position
can leave him a voice mail at ext. 230 in the K2 Snowboard Department.
Mervin Manufacturing's Wizard Of Oz Mike Olson is back in the
operating room. After a nasty skating accident a few months back he's finally
getting the metal shank that has been holding his leg together removed. He's
optimistic about it all and says he'll be snowboarding later on this season.
The Nike-buying-Morrow rumor seems to have taken on a life of it's
own. Perpetuated by other board company reps as well as being continually
mentioned in rec.skiing.snowboard. The official word from Morrow: "We can't
comment on acquisition rumors," said Fletcher Chamberlain a Morrow
spokesman. "Don't take that as a positive or negative, legally we can't say
anything other than no comment." Of course, there's nothing better for a
stock than the rumor that a major player is planing a buy-out.
The Swoosh Kingdom has been blamed for buying nearly everyone in the snowboard
industry. The latest victim is Airwalk. This is not true, according to Todd
Finney, Airwalk's snowboot product development person. The Beaverton
zombies may have money to throw around, but none of it is landing in Airwalk's
pocket at this time (see the fable of the Little Red Rooster.) They did,
however, buy the ski and snowboard patrol at the resort in Whistler, B.C.
Is the White House next?
The other rumors we have can't be discussed at this time, but we will kick
them down in the next issue.
GONE TO THE CHAPEL
One third of the K2 Snowboarding staff has been missing this month
on honeymoon. Marketing director Hayley Martin got married in late
September. Hayley is back in the office now, but Heidi McCory is in
Nepal traveling with her new husband.
That's it. We'll have more real soon. That is if they don't put up any Plexiglas
on our cage.