Skateboarder Josh Kalis 5 of 7 - Epicly Later'd - VICE

Uploaded by vice on Nov 28, 2011


ROB DYRDEK: What we didn't know at the time is how crazy
rapped-out ghetto he really was, 'cause Jamie kind of
cleaned him up.
Like no jewelry, just kept him like, you know how Jamie does,
is like finds you and like turns you
into a street soldier.
And he had just sort of cleaned him up, to where when
he finally quit to ride for Alien, his inner hard-core
Dallas/Michigan ghetto side like exploded the moment he
got on Alien.
We're like, what the hell?
JOSH KALIS: I mean, I was just coming out
of that Dallas shit.
Tech N9ne earrings and Tech N9ne pinkie rings.
And I mean, we thought we were kinda doing it.

JAMIE THOMAS: Well, Alien, at that time,
though, was that way.
I mean, it was basically all those guys, like
corn rows and cargoes.
And it was basically a full product of the '90s.
So all those dudes were into it.
Kalis went back to Texas and filmed a lot of footage for
his Timecode part, and he had cargoes
throughout the whole thing.
ROB DYRDEK: Despite Alien having that Memory Screen sort
of crazy, artistic--
that set this new precedent in what video production even
could be, us as a team, we were united in this sort of
like more broad scope.
Like we weren't all flowing around and artsy.
We were all listening to hip-hop and it was sort of
like a nice blend of the artists and the creation of
what the brand was.
But we all still sort of maintained the same sort of
style in unity.
And it wasn't overly hip-hop, but it wasn't like rock or
anything else.
And he fit into that really, really well at the time.
He was part of the beginning of that new guard for Alien at
that particular time.
ANNOUNCER: Prepare to timecode.
Josh Kalis.

JOSH KALIS: To tell you the truth, it had nothing to do
with the image and art direction.
It had to do with Rob Dyrdek, John Drake, and Duane Pitre.
And in Bo Turner was like one of the best dudes.
He was such a ball breaker.
I just wanted to be a part of all that.
We never talked about videos.
I don't even know how Timecode came out.
Like I think Dyrdek and maybe Mike Hill or somebody, I mean
they just took whatever footage people
had and made a video.
We weren't filming for a video.
We weren't doing any of that stuff.
They were just, like, man, we gotta put something out.
ROB DYRDEK: And at that time, he was so raw.
Nobody was putting it down in the streets
harder than he was.

STEVIE WILLIAMS: That's right when he had the cover of
TransWorld, doing a backside 180 with the Golden Gate
Bridge in the back with the Adidas.
It was hot, yo.
It was really, really hot.
You know, me being out in California in San Francisco,
and Josh being Josh, and I was still hanging with little hood
So he couldn't really hang with me like that, like he
could in Philly.
But when Josh came through-- it was still all love, but you
know, as far as being competitive and having a good
sponsor and having a wack sponsor, and shooting with the
right photographer and shooting with the wrong
photographer, and not having whatever to get to the next
level, Josh had it all.
It was something that you could model yourself after.
Like, damn, I want to be like Josh.
I want--
I want to get the cover of TransWorld.
I want the DC this.
I want-- you know, but you gotta work for that shit.
I was staying at Josh's house.
And I was wildin' out.
I was only 15, so I was wildin', like throwing up,
just spilling shit, getting caught stealing and running
back in the crib.
Like just--
just blowing the spot up.
And then here comes Lennie Kirk.
I'd go into the crib and like this new dude's
sitting on a couch.
And he's like, yo, you gotta leave.
I'm like, shit, I don't gotta go nowhere.
My man live here.
And Josh was like, yeah, you gotta leave.
And I was like, wow.
So it was a real big fuck you to Lennie Kirk.
But the powerful era that they had wasn't about me.
That's how I look at it now.
It was like, he ran hard with Lennie Kirk for a while.
JOSH KALIS: Well, when the Timecode came out, I didn't
hang out with anybody but, actually, Lennie.

Like me and Lennie were roommates in San Francisco.
And like, I love Lennie.
Because Lennie is crazy as shit.
Before his Jesus stuff, he was like so
ghetto gangster, just--
like we were two peas in a pod.
You know what I mean?
He had his corn rows and his camos, and I had my camos, and
I mean, we just-- we thought we were the
hardest dudes ever.
But Lennie would take it a little bit further than me.
ROB DYRDEK: You know, when I think of Lennie, how he
skates, I think of that one photo where's he's grinding
this ledge in between a pool, where his arm is just so
rocketed out.
JOSH KALIS: Every time, his arm would be looking like he
was fucking punching the air.
And I mean, he was just, like, so dope.
I loved how he skated.
Like, I was jealous a lot of times.
Because I can't really jump off shit like
he could, you know?
He could do the most tech shit, or he could grind the
most gnarliest shit.

MIKE BLABAC: With Lennie, he's just such a rad dude to watch
on a skateboard.
That works out bad, that grind-out drop thing.
Like he had to literally pinned himself against the
door and like ran and fucking threw his board down, and it
was pretty raw.
It was sick.
I just remember thinking, like, holy
shit, this guy's insane.
JAMIE THOMAS: I was always a Lennie Kirk--
I was always a fan of his skating.
His Timecode part, seriously hands-down my
favorite video part.
It's definitely in the top five.
The song, the vibe, his whole kit and that time was like
His skating was so sick and so raw.
It was like, I don't even know if anybody's ever even come
out that raw.
Like maybe Train Wreck?
Like maybe?
It was that, like, uncut and unfiltered.
JOSH KALIS: Lennie's skating, it was identical to his
RB UMALI: Oh, back in the day, gangsta Lennie days?
He would roll up with like corn rows,
blasting gangsta rap.
And he had like--
I know he had this bat in the backseat of his car with like
screws drilled into it.
I think he really have had like a spiked bat.
Because I think he was listening to Wu Tang, and he
wanted to have a spiked bat.
And yeah.
Just driving around drunk, going to house parties,
starting fights.
I remember this one fight broke out in Houston, and they
ended up going back with, like, empty Snapple bottles
they got from my room and like--
I think they torched the house in the middle of the night.

JOSH KALIS: We were at Denny's one time in San Diego.
Some Marines were in there.
So what's Lennie do?
Like blah, blah, starts talking all this shit to them.
Marine starts talking shit.
About ready to fight.
Lennie reaches under his fucking seat and pulls out a
BB gun and cocks this BB gun to this Marine.
Like what's up now?
Cocks a fucking BB gun.
Well, here comes the Marine, grabs a hammer, like a real
hammer, not like a fucking gun hammer, and fucking bashes
Lennie's car, punches him in the face.
And here come all eight Marines out the thing.
Let's fucking go, dude.
But he was just like that.
Always drawing attention.
And then he hit his head.
And like, smoked weed, and tripped out, and
fucking found God.
LENNIE KIRK: Ask Jesus to forgive your sins always.
Pray always.
Get to know the Lord.
Study and obey the Bible.
Quit sinning.
Escape hell.
JAMIE THOMAS: I've told that story so many times.
It's always a good one to tell in vans, the
story of Lennie Kirk.
Basically what happened to Lennie, you know?
JOSH KALIS: Well, I wasn't there when you grinded the
dumpster and fell back and smacked his head.
But that's not what made him turn to religion.
Either a few days before or a few days after that, he got
ran over by a Pacific Bell truck.
Like full-on from his ankle all the way up.
And he didn't break a bone.
And it was in front of mad skaters.
Then a couple days after that, he was skating across Haight
Street, and this Jeep like, beep, honked the horn at him.
And he must've ran the light or something.
The guy in the Jeep was like, hey, boy,
don't you see the light?
And he was like, don't I fucking see the light?
Like, whatever.
Skate around.
And then that night, he was hanging out with some chick
and he was smoking weed.
And I guess, he was telling me that he was thinking about the
dude in the Jeep.
Don't you see the light?
And fucking bam.
Like, he said he went sober, kicked the chick out, and then
all that psychoness that he had went into religion.
And next thing you know, before every time he tried a
trick, he'd open up the Bible, read a verse, and that was
going to be the outcome of the trick.
In Timecode he 50-50 grinds this long ledge, it's on the
top of a parking ramp and it goes flat, and then he pops
off onto the sidewalk.
And while we were skating that thing, he fucking grinds, his
front truck comes off and he falls backwards and rolls and
I mean, he smacks his head so hard.
So I run over there to see if he's all right and he's
praying and he's asking for forgiveness and he's
And when he was done praying, I'm like, yo, dude.
Like what are you praying?
What are you apologizing for?
He was like, man, I jerked off this morning and that's my
So we'd start watching the footage on the camera, and
he's like, you see that?
You see that?
Like he swore that he could see God's hand come down and
boom, mush his head into the ground.
And I was like, get the fuck out of here, right?
And I had to deal with that every day until I just had to
like completely separate myself.
If you are wearing-- like for me, I would
be wearing a necklace.
And he'd be like, yo, Kalis, dude.
You're going to hell.
You gon' burn in hell for wearing that necklace.
You representin' a female.
ROB DYRDEK: It was the most cockamamie jibber-jabbish.
Like he spoke in tongues.
It was so all over the crazy map.
I had this argument with them about Hubba Hideout and how he
was going to switch back tail it, even though
Kalis already did.
And I'm like, you can't do that.
He's like, it don't matter.
It doesn't matter.
I'm like, you can't.
So he was doing a sermon for this church.
There was probably 300 people there.
He's just, you know, like, and I walk, I was in the gutter, I
He's going, he's like--
And I don't, I don't care who did what on what
ledge or who did--
I'm like, it turned into where he was focusing in on me.
Like in the middle of the sermon, he just somehow
twitched into the memory of having the argument of a trick
already being done.
He got fixated on like a young girl, like in a tight top,
like, and you're dressing around like a whore, coming
around, acting like a whore.
And you think you can come around putting your body--
I had to get up, be like, yo, dude.
And he's just, like, uh!
And people were saying to me, I can't believe
that didn't move you.
And I'm like, what?
None of it even made sense.
Like the guy was just like, it's like it was so crazy, in
they were just like, aaahhh.
JAMIE THOMAS: He has some pretty heavy mental stability
issues that far outweigh anything he wants to do.
You know what I mean?
He could want to be someone, but he's mentally not capable
of being the person he wants to be.
And I think that that--
I mean, it's like, how do you avoid that?
Basically, I don't know if Carter was the dude who was
helping Lennie, or who was the dude.
But somebody was giving Lennie a temporary platform to be--
like have a normal life for a while.
And then once that kind of crumbled or fell apart, or he
burned the bridge, then he was out there on his own again,
left to his own devices.
And we all saw where that went.
ROB DYRDEK: It just became one of those things, that like he
really never skated after Timecode, really ever again.
Not only was he just being so focused on all things God and
preaching and being in the streets preaching, that
eventually they just, they had no choice.
JOSH KALIS: I mean, in his brain, he is 100% right.
You know what I mean?
I heard he was robbing old ladies in Frisco.
So I'll call him up, Lennie, what are you doing, dude?
Robbing old ladies?
And he was like, man, it's tough times.
The Lord said it was all right.
I was like, wow.
And it was shortly after that is when he got busted robbing
that taxi cab driver, and off to prison he went.
I mean, I don't know the whole story.
I just heard all the rumors about him walking around Pier
7 with a shotgun in his pants, you know?
No, he got out after a few years.
And I actually went to Frisco and skated
with him for a week.
Every day.
And he was killing it.
Like, there's sick footage right now of Lennie board
sliding this flat rail.
It was awesome skating with him.
And next thing I know, I got a phone call from
San Francisco jail.
Like, hey, man.
And I need $20 grand for this lawyer.
I'm like, what are you doing in there?
He's like, I got seven charges, man.
Allegedly it was like kidnapping and some other
crazy shit.
I don't know.
It was pretty wild.

ROB DYRDEK: After he first went to jail, it was on
September 10.
So he kept calling me over and over from
jail, like, see, Rob?
I told you God just put me in jail.
The end times are here, the end times are here.
And this would have been September 10, 2001.
The next day, 9/11 happened.
So he was like, for sure, the end of the world, God put him
in jail because of that.
And it was like, it was pretty ridiculous.
But the crazy thing, too, is he went-- now he's like a
vato, you know what I'm saying?
Now he's like a Mexican gangster.
Like, have you ever seen his MySpace?

Where it's like, La Vida Loco, and it's like, (IN VATO
ACCENT) Fuck all, fuck all the bitches and my vida, my
bitches and my loco-- like, whatever.
It looks like a Spanish gangbanger's MySpace page.
It's incredible.