Zero Club | April 2023 | Michael Crabtree

1. Name / Instagram Account?
Michael Crabtree @crabnuckle

2. Age?
50 this summer.

3. Where are you from?
Born and raised in San Jose CA- left in 2000 to Santa Cruz- then, Boulder Creek mountains for some years - to Monterey/seaside - then San Francisco - up to Marin and back down to Oakland for the last 7/8 years

4. What’s your history with skateboarding? What role does it serve in your life today?

HISTORY: I just realized I have never not had a skateboard in my home since birth- starting with my handed down beloved red plastic board . It lived in the closet and I was always drawn to it- I remember seeing the intro to the sitcom “What’s Happening “ when he skated down the driveway-something clicked and I was on that sucker every day all day-I was probably 6 or 7- tic tac-ing away rainy days in the garage- Probably did 12,000 backside circles - then finally frontside: learning frontsides evoked the same feeling I get today on a new trick -next thing I knew we had wood boards (obtained a lance mountain verified too  and were out there - building jump ramps and taking the bus to who cares . There was an old vert 1/2 pipe in the field behind my house called Pinetree- Cab and crew skated it , but was dilapidated by the time I de-grommed. Mainly street and mini around San Jose gunderson- scurbs - and downtown- later we started branching out to Palo Alto Park (the only park around) and train to EMB. Also, I had a fun Frankenstein ramp- there were lots of strange challenging ramps in San Jose ⁃ I still remember my friend Bali Sahota, a freestyle rider for Madrid taught me kickflips ⁃ it’s all I did - I was lucky to live in a place with a bunch of really amazing skaters -who were in videos and pro etc. - I never wanted that, just to observe it, but over time I ended getting sponsored etc., I just wasn’t me , I left the industry- looking back I’m proud of it now, mostly about the Thrasher stuff -though, still not my bag.

CURRENTLY: It’s my main activity. I’m trying to soak it in as it’s inevitably fleeting, I’m okay with that.

5. What’s your set-up, including shoes?
8.5 popsicle mob if possible - smaller wheel base- MOB-Jessup works too- Indy 144’s and spitfires 55 and shrinkage- Etnies, always Etnies- but will try new stuff if free- ha!

6. What terrain do you like to skate?
Curbs are about all my body can handle -with the occasional ramp session . If I’m feeling good, I’ll hit Emeryville or Berkeley park - lately I’ve been mobing downtown Oakland with the young bloods- it’s super fun and takes me back, it’s pretty much exactly the same shit we were doing, which is nice.

7. What stokes you out in skating?
“Seeing a kid do something that I tauch ‘em er I taught em”

8. What could be better in skateboarding?
Nothing -and everything for the act of skateboarding- absolutely nothing- it’s all relative - let the kids do what they want . To a point - I’m happy to kindly redirect a mongo pusher or double no-complyer - we’re all lucky to be able to skate- Industry wise - just the human condition and need for greed and for deemed self worth- people work hard and struggle to pay rent and pinch pennies to have a real Skateshop in their towns while blind callous corporations swoop in and suck out every dime they can, and they can suck very much out, including all the enjoi-ment. I used to be quite the judge-mental curmudgeon, I fed into what tricks weren’t cool, or “allowed” we older generation can lighten up on our rules- I’m trying to anyhow…

9. What inspires you, in skateboarding, and life?
Progression, art, growth, music, friends, pollination, striving to be positive-

10. What bands/music do you like? RUSH- nick Drake- slayer- television- carcass- cass mccombs- minutemen- chick Korea .. too many.

11. What makes you laugh?
Reality. How hypocritical I am and we all are - trying to lighten up- I will always be a curmudgeon- but see different with experience and reflection.

12. Favorite books/movies/tabloids? Murakami- 451- shantaram- the life aquatic- king of new york- stranger than fiction- Walter middy-

13. Major injuries?
1 broke rib- Broke left (front wrist ) 3 times - lead to tendinitis carpal tunnel arthritis - bursitis elbows -the worst is my left/front ankle , is ducked - it’s my main injury- some days I can’t move it, and have to nudge it into place - it’s interesting that it can hold certain tricks’ weight - what sucks is that I can’t kick flip anymore- it’s that exact flick spot -oh well - broke metatarsals and big toe, yada yada

14. Outside of skating, any other passions/interests?
Cats, food, plants. Surviving another day All of the above. Also film/photography -it’s a superlative way of capturing any image. Making art, resin molding small things, clay, animation, filming, love being in a band, miss it, music - sign artist by trade.

15. Skating as a kid vs. skating as an adult over 40…talk about the differences and similarities.
At first there were no rules - Then major rules applied. Now no there are no rules.

16. Favorite skate videos?
Video days -2nd Hand Smoke -Eastern Exposure -Sub Zero -Rubbish Heap -411s -all Alien Workshops

17. Favorite skaters?
Jeremy Wray - Cards- Evan Smith - Aurilian- Lou Lopez

18. Curbs. Talk about curbs.
I can’t , I’ll cry.

19. Favorite skate graphics?
All Jim Phillips - Keith Meek Slasher - Corey O’Brien - Thiebaud Worst skate graphics? No

20. Who should we interview for the next episode of the Zero Club?
Anyone not from the U.S.

21. Last words?
It saved my life. You still can - just takes longer - appreciate mobility.