Really interesting piece from the California Sunday Magazine profiling Jake Phelps through the eyes of SF skater and New York Times Magazine Editor Will Staley.
There’s plenty in this that many of you will be aware of already but it’s still definitely worth your time for an insight into the equally loved and hated walking personification of the Thrasher ethos himself.
Hit the image or text below to read the full article.
Of all the remarkable facts about Phelps, perhaps the most impressive is this: He’s not dead. When you talk to him about his career, which he calls “a cavalcade of gnar,” he delivers a lowlight reel: He’s been stabbed in the chest by a meth head in the Haight and nearly killed in a drive-by shooting in Antioch; he almost lost an arm to a spider bite he got while sleeping under a vert ramp in Oakland; he’s had two brushes with death in Australia — one when he rolled a car while barreling through the Outback dressed as a priest (so he could tell customs he was there to distribute skateboards to Aborigines), one after hitting his head on a ramp (when he came to ten days later, he found that his friends, convinced he was a goner, had taken his board and sold the parts). He’s broken both legs, both thumbs, both collarbones, and his pelvis. He has fractured his skull. He’s had seven knee surgeries — three on one, four on the other. He says his medical record is 290 pages long. “I’ve spent more time in the hospital,” he told me once, “than most people spend in jail.”