Wednesday, November 17, 2010


 "Big Brother," the BOOB press release reads, "was the most infamous magazine in skateboard history and one of its loudest voices was Dave Carnie. BOOB (published by KING PUBLISHING with support from VANS) is a collection of Dave Carnie’s best work in his 14 years with Big Brother—a magazine that not only transformed skateboarding and brought us Jackass, but influenced everything in the publishing world from Vice to Martha Stewart’s Living. BOOB will go down in literary history as the greatest skateboard book, not about skateboarding, ever written."

Now for some quotes from famous people:

“Dave tells it like it is, or however he sees it through his perverted prism. Never compromising, sometimes offensive, always funny.”
—Tony Hawk

“On his best day Dave Carnie isn’t too pleasant. He is often drunk, fairly abusive, and a goddamn awful fighter. He can write like a son of a bitch and is one too. I’m a big fan.”
—Johnny Knoxville

“I met Carnie at Big Brother when the offices were at World in El Segundo and he was the biggest dick. It wasn’t till four years later when he was drunk at Jeff’s apartment that he was suddenly nice to me. I’m not sure how I won him over, but it took years of trying.”
—Spike Jonze

“Idiots often flaunt their idiocy unintentionally, geniuses often flaunt their genius over-intentionally, but it is the truly gifted ones who can deliver their genius through idiocy.”
—Mark Whitely, Slap Magazine

“When I think of Carnie, one word comes to mind: shitbag. Actually, that’s two words, but it looks way better written as one.”
—Jeff Tremaine

To order your copy, touch a BOOB anywhere on this page. While you're waiting for your book to arrive, enjoy a food related sample from the notorious "Kids Issue" that came out in January 1999:  
How To Hurt Kids
Face it, kids suck. Who likes kids anyway? They're filthy little runts. We should be waging war against them, not for them. What's all this “they're our future” horseshit, anyway? What about the present? What about me? Has everyone forgotten that adults, back in the day, also had the misfortune of falling out of some lame cunt's cunt? It wasn't that hard. It was so easy that I don't even remember doing it. Yet every child who performs this pitiful stunt of bungee jumping out of a vagina is awarded Rock Star status.

“Isn't it cuuuute?” No, it looks like a fucking worm with arms. I hate kids. They've ruined everything: albums come with stupid warnings, car windows only go down halfway, drugs and liquor are heavily regulated, you need a ladder at the bookstore to get to the pornography, and TV and movies are boring. If it weren't for kids and their fragile little brains, you'd probably be looking at a nice pair of tits right now, but no, we can't show tits because of kids. Fuck kids! Let's kill ’em.

In an effort to rid the world of kids so that the rest of us can grow and prosper, I have created some deadly desserts that will, at the very least, injure the little fuckers. Kids love sweets. They fall for them every time. Just as men think with their dicks around women, so do children, in the company of candy, think with their tongues. 
The ol’ razor blade in the apple—a classic!
Ingredients: Apple, razor blade, duct tape, glue, and a kid.
This one is a favorite around Halloween, but works during any season. Any ole apple will do, but if you can find one that fell in a pile of e. coli-infested shit you can inflict more damage. Cut the apple in half and then glue a razor blade to one of the halves. Align the halves as if nothing happened and then tape them together. Do this to a bunch of apples until you have an entire sack. Then, go to your local grammar school and hand them to the kids as they get on the bus.

The exploding candy bar
Ingredients: Candy, plastic canister of lighter fluid, a bottle rocket, sealing wax, a cigarette, a match, some tape, and a kid.
First, build the bomb. The diagram is self-explanatory, but remember, the more lighter fluid in the canister, the more the kid dies. Next, buy some candy and tape it all around the bomb. Make sure you choose popular candy. Then, when you find a kid that you want to blow up, light the cigarette (which acts as a time delay fuse for the bottle rocket on top) and give him/her the “candy.” Run away. Helpful hint: if you have time to stake out a location, build a foxhole nearby. 
The cobra in the yogurt
Ingredients: One Yoplait Yogurt, one cobra, and one kid.
Kids love yogurt. Replace the yogurt in the container with a ferocious, hungry cobra. Go to your local park and offer any one of the young, rosy-cheeked whelps your “cobragurt.” When they go to open it, they'll think that they're about to enjoy a healthy snack, but—surprise! Cobra attack to the face! Works every time.

Poisoned candy—a classic!
Ingredients: Candy bar, Vanish toilet bowl cleaner, a turkey baster, and a kid.
An issue that I have yet to address in this article is the “don't–take–candy–from–strangers” dilemma. Don't worry about it. Kids are stupid sugar magnets. Their mother (the cunt) could be standing right beside them telling them, “Remember, don't take candy from a stranger,” and they'll still eagerly snatch whatever sweets you have to offer. I can imagine, however, some snot–nosed goody–goody actually refusing your gift. My first inclination would be to strike the little beast, but that wouldn't do either of us any good. So, I would explain that I was a friend and he can accept candy from a friend—works every time. But make sure you poison the candy. I fill a turkey baster with Vanish Toilet Bowl cleaner and ram it into the candy. Vanish does to kids just what the name implies.

Bear trap in the ice cream cake
Ingredients: An ice cream cake, a bear trap, a birthday, and a kid.
Order an ice cream cake at the cake store and request that they replace the ice cream with a bear trap. Most won't do that, so take the cake home and hollow out the bottom. Since you aren't going to be putting the hole back in, you can eat it. Yum! Spread the trap's jaws wide and secure the spring mechanism. It's a good idea to put the candles on the cake before you place it over the trap. Now, find a kid's birthday party, but be careful, because adults in attendance will like ice cream cake too. You don't want to mangle the hands of an accomplished adult, so warn the adults that there is a bear trap in the cake by spelling it out loud—don't worry, kids can't spell. Just say, “T-H-E-R-E-I-S-A-B-E-A-R-T-R-A-P-I-N-T-H-E-C-A-K-E,” then, anyone that is an adult will stay the fuck away from that cake. After birthday boy blows out the candles, say, “Okay, everyone dive in!” (Honorable mention: Mouse trap in the cupcake.)

Friday, November 12, 2010

GERMANY, CHAPTER 6: The Sandwich Thieves

A typical German breakfast buffet.
Nothing got Tania more excited in Germany than stealing sandwiches from the hotel breakfast buffets every morning. Breakfast in Germany, incidentally, is more akin to an American lunch. It consists mostly of breads, meats, and cheeses. No matter how many cups of coffee or hard-boiled eggs I’d add to my breakfast plate, it always looked like lunch. I attribute this to the presence of all the pickled fare that is made available at the German breakfast. Pickles have no place at the breakfast table. That’s not just my opinion, that’s a fact. Lord knows I tried to get with the AM pickle program, but it simply doesn’t work. I found the European custom of drinking beer with ice cubes a little queer, but I’m okay with it, even if I refuse to participate in the practice. Pickled herrings with orange juice for breakfast, on the other hand, is a downright disgusting pairing. It's not natural. You’d have more success trying to mate a horse with a bullfrog. There’s got to be a “thou shalt not” in the Bible about eating pickled herrings with orange juice at breakfast, right? Because that is a marriage that will destroy the family as we know it.

"Meat, meat, meat! She can't afford a cannon. Meat, meat, meat! She can't afford no gun at all." 
(That's some Anthony Bourdain/Henry Rollins shit right there, referencing old punk rock. Easy grandpa, easy. You're "Cool Meter" can't handle your obscure references and seething disdain for mainstream culture.)
We’d each grab enough meat, bread, and cheese at the buffet to make two sandwiches. At the table we’d assemble one sandwich and eat it while smiling at the other guests as if nothing at all were afoot. “Haha, no capers here.” (You actually could spoon some capers over your pickled herrings if you liked—oh! maybe even drop some capers in your orange juice to make a German bubble tea?) And then, very quietly, we’d put together our second sandwich. Next thing you know, POOF! It was gone!

A Sandwich Thief creation.
“I noticed you has had an entire sandwich on your plate not two seconds ago,” I always worried some suspicious fraulein would catch us. “There is no vay you could haff eaten zis sandwich zat fast. So I vonder, vhere did it go, hmm? Fatty?”

We fucking stole it, bitch!

I’d make sure the coast was clear, and Tania would get a gang of napkins, wrap up the sandwiches, and throw them in her purse. “HAHA! THE SANDWICH THIEVES HAVE STRUCK AGAIN!” We’d say that every time.

It should be noted that while ordinary napkins worked great for sandwich smuggling, I found that using vagina bags—wait, what? Oh, apparently they're not called "vagina bags," they're used for disposing of sanitary napkins. Whatever. The vagina bags were in dispensers on the wall in every toilet and they worked great for transporting stolen sandwiches.
While cruising down the Rhine, Tania looks for DEA (Dejeuner Enforcement Administration) agents before she tears into the contraband.

 Stealing sandwiches in the morning is one of Tania’s finest ideas. Because the sandwiches would reemerge later in the day when we were on a boat or a train and hunger had just begun to descend upon us again. The stolen sandwich made for a perfect light—and FREE!—lunch that would tide us over until we got to a proper schnitzel palace.

“Nothing,” Tania likes to say, “tastes as good as a stolen sandwich.”
Here’s a travel tip from the sandwich thieves
This is not in a guidebook by Rick Steves
Steal a morning snack, stuff it up your sleeves
When hunger strikes, a stolen sandwich always relieves

This photo has nothing to do with stealing sandwiches, but it is about stealing. I'm not sure if Tania was suffering from a mild case of kleptomania, or if she just enjoyed making her "crime face," but emboldened by the success of her sandwich heists she started trying to steal all kinds of stuff. Here she's trying to steal an entire German castle one stone at a time. The only thing that prevented her from making off with the largest castle still standing on the Rhine and reconstructing it in our backyard was a thunderclap that echoed across the skies at the exact same moment she removed the stone between her fingers from the wall. "Put it back," I said nervously watching the clouds, "you've awoken the gods again." ("Again": as you may remember, when we got married, They (the gods) lit the hills around Big Sur on fire with lightning bolts.) "Fuck them!" she responded. She was obviously crazy and addicted to stealing. I conducted an impromptu intervention and was somehow able to convince her to not only put that particular stone back, but leave the rest of the castle behind. "Please accept this gift we are offering you…" We were not struck by lightning.

Monday, November 8, 2010

GERMANY, CHAPTER 5: The Ballhaus and The Roller Disco

"Do you have anything gayer?" I asked the fraulein.

Before we left, I mentioned to Scott Bourne that we were going to Berlin.

“Let me know if you want a contact,” Scott wrote, “good friend lives there and would roll you around and take you out for a beer.

Do you get this? “You should meet my friend!” I don’t think I’ve ever taken anybody up on it. “New friends” is not on the list. A wheel of parmigiano reggiano is. But I always politely take the friend’s info, promise to look them up, and then promptly throw it out. For some reason I contacted Scott’s friend in Berlin. “Maybe he has cheese,” I must have thought.

The emails between Julian Dykmans and myself were normal enough, so when he suggested we meet at a strange place called “The Ballhaus” for beers and some of the “best schnitzel in town,” I said, sure.

“Hey! All right!” he wrote back. “Nine pm at the Clärchens Ballhaus. Reserved under the name Dykmans. This is funny, like a blind date… To recognize us, here is a pic...”
At the bottom of the email was a grainy picture of an attractive couple sharing a good laugh. They didn’t look like psychos, but then psychos never look like psychos. Which makes it hard for normal people to be normal because the most psychotic psycho always looks super normal. He said something else at the bottom that I didn’t pay much attention to at the time, “You feeling the be-bop evening? Better put on your dancing shoes!”

Julian may have been normal, but the Clarchens Ballhaus was anything but. “What a strange place,” I said as we entered the gates into a large, open courtyard where people were seated at tables, drinking, and eating. Some had spilled onto the street and were smoking cigarettes by the light of the bare bulbs hung from the trees. The courtyard garden had a wild character to it. Whoever cared for it, cared for it only occasionally, if at all. The five-story building didn’t necessarily stand out from its neighbors, it looked like an ordinary apartment building, but there was something strange about it. It felt as if it had suffered under the Nazis, then the communists, but now was the home of a vegetarian, nudist commune.

We stumbled into the dark, narrow, wood paneled foyer and were instantly transported back in time, into a world that I see in Kafka’s stories. Old men dressed in tuxedos with bushy white curlicue mustaches looked as if they had lived in the ancient cloakroom their entire lives. They took our coats and our money. It was very crowded. There was barely room for their bushy eyebrows. Even if I understood German I don’t think I would have been able to hear what they were saying, and they were upset at me for not understanding, so I just handed over some money and in return I received some tickets. I farted in the small, crowded foyer. Another old man in a tuxedo found the name “Dykmans” amongst the scribbles on a crumpled sheet of paper he kept close to his chest. He instructed us to follow him through a narrow pair of curtains. 

German rockabilly for the senior crowd at the Ballhaus.

Inside it was dark and loud, the ceilings were high and the floor was packed with people of all ages dancing and drinking and shouting. Disco balls and tinsel curtains sent sparkles all over the ballroom. Another old ghost in a tuxedo led us to a table in a corner. I wanted to protest because we couldn’t see the action on the floor very well from there, but I later learned that all the good tables have been reserved for centuries by the elderly Germans who come every weekend to let their hair—what little they have left of it—down. My father would have protested, and spit on the floor, but we sat down and took in our surroundings.

I had to use the restroom, but was scared to cross the packed dance floor. I tried to get a piggyback ride at the edge of the dance floor to ensure safe passage to the bathrooms, but I didn’t know how to say “piggyback ride” in German. “Me? (I pointed to myself) I’ll get on your back? (I pointed to the old lady’s back and pantomimed mounting her) Ja? Piggy back ride? Ja?” I’m not sure if the fraulein was telling me to beat it, or if she was trying to tell me there was a saddle in a nearby cupboard, when I heard someone yelling my name in my ear, “DAVE!” It was Julian’s wife, Lou. She gave me a kiss on each cheek and I abandoned the migration. I showed her where Tania and I were sitting. Julian soon joined us. It was like a blind date. I had no idea who these people were.

Julian, I learned, is an old European pro skater. He’s been in the scene for a long time and everyone in Europe knows who he is. He now runs a company called Antiz. On top of being a dashing skateboarder, he’s an interesting fellow off the board. I’d liken him to something of a Euro Ed Templeton, both in age and hobbies. Although, to my knowledge, Julian does not paint nude boys. 
Lou, Julian, pizza, schnitzel.
We ordered beers, schnitzels, and pizzas. We discussed the state of skateboarding, in particular the professional skateboarder’s responsibility to himself and to skateboarding. We agreed that some skaters take more than their fair share of stickers. The food was delicious, but the Ballhaus was so loud I think it was affecting my taste buds. Apparently the tongue is connected to the ears? I had to resist a strange urge to squirt lemon on Tania’s pizza. We soon realized conversation was impossible with all the dancing and the be-bop and so we were forced to abandon ourselves to enjoying the noise. Julian and Lou danced, while we watched. 

Julian and Lou dancing in the center of the Elderly Sea. Below is the Easy Rider.

I have developed an interest in old people dancing, and I can say that some of the most wonderful elderly dancers in the world are to be found in Germany. We had one of Germany’s finest on the dance floor right in front of us. I’ll call him “Easy Rider” because his dancing style consisted of gripping an imaginary pair of “ape hangers” and steering his invisible motorcycle in tight circles around the floor. ER was not afraid to show his affection for younger women. ER touched/groped women in a casual manner not permitted to younger men. I made a mental note of his style for future use.

“A friend of ours is having a party at a roller disco,” Julian announced. “Would you and Tania like to join us?” We were still jetlagged and wanted nothing more than to go to bed, but the idea of visiting a German roller disco sounded like the worst possible thing we could do, so we said yes. Julian said something about a 200 meter track—I’m not sure what a meter is, but 200 of them sounded big. I pictured banked corners and the like. Perhaps even a loop. But in reality, the roller disco was a small room, about the size of a high school gym, with a stage and a bar flanking a wood floor that was filled with people on roller skates going in circles while listening to disco music. Roller skates were surely a form of torture or public humiliation during the Dark Ages, no? Yet we had to pay to strap a pair of those things on our feet. The disco, on the other hand, was free. I would have preferred Bach’s cello concertos.

“Do you have anything gayer than this?” I asked the fraulein behind the counter when she handed me my skates. They were bright, sparkly blue, but I thought I could do better. She didn’t seem to understand my English. “Maybe something white or pink? Weiss?” I know “white” in German because of all the wine. “Nien weiss? Okay. Well these will be fine. Danke.” In hindsight, I don’t think one could find a gayer pair of skates.
Tania drinks her beer at the bar where you're supposed. She got cool Converse roller skates.
“You’re really good!” Lou said to me after I took my first spin around the rink in my big gay skates. Tania agreed. I was impressing the ladies with my roller skating skills, just like in elementary school when I was well known for being the only boy able to skate backwards. I ordered a beer at the bar, put my arm around Tania, and began to explain the secrets of my roller skating skills. I compared myself to the American negroes that were in the videos projected on the walls. My what talent. I was inspired to take another spin when a great commotion occurred on the floor in front of us. It was Lou. She had snuck off while I was talking and caused a crash.

There was a great pile of Germans writhing on the floor. It’s hard to tell the difference between German men and women, but I think it was mostly men. It was quite a pileup*. All caused by a spilt beer. Lou spilled the beer. She was trying to bring it to Julian when she was grabbed by a falling German who pulled her, and her beer, to the floor. There’s a reason why beverages are not allowed on the roller disco floor: roller skates and beer don’t mix. Lou was given a tongue lashing by a German man she won’t soon forget. 

A German Roller Disco employee mops up Lou's mess. The angry German man who cussed her out is in the purple shirt in the center.

“ICH HAT BUMSEN MIT EIN HUHN!” the man yelled at Lou. I’m not sure what he was saying, but he was very angry. He sounded like Hitler. I’m glad I didn’t know what he was saying because if I had I would have given him a swift kick in the schnitzel. Lou, however, was very calm and apologetic, “Ja, ja, ja,” and calmly weathered his storm. She did, after all, deserve a short lecture on the dangers of roller skating under the influence, but the German fellow went a little too far.

“He said I was stupid,” Lou told us after he left, “and that I should be the one cleaning up the mess. He also called me a stupid American.” Lou is Swiss. So that makes him a stupid German. But it made me stupid mad.

“Why I oughtta!” I said through clinched teeth. I scanned the floor for the scoundrel, but he was nowhere to be found. “How dare he!” How can you call someone stupid while wearing roller skates? I’m glad I couldn’t find him because I can’t even fight when I’m not wearing roller skates.

But my beer was on a railing above the roller rink floor. German beer is delicious, but there are so many other ways to enjoy it. I gave my cup a little nudge. Oops. Such a stupid American. “Entschuldige!”

* I have co-written a play with my friend Caleb Plowman called, The Four Ball Pileup. It’s a rather long script, the action taking place over the course of five acts, but the gist of the story is that two nude men in a locker room collide as they turn the same corner and their penises and scrotums become ensnared. The scene in the roller disco, with all those men and women piled upon each other, has inspired me to begin writing the sequel, The Eleven Ball Pileup.

Roller skating to disco gets Julian amped.