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BLADE LIFE: Interview with Demetrios George Review / 사용기 & 인터뷰



Demetrios George is a big. strong, grown-ass-man rollerblader who happens to be on a personal mission to keep the legacy of the FP crew alive. A legacy described in the following interview as being based on “Hard hitting, gangster, we know what we’re doing style.” Now teamed up with The Conference as co-Team Manager with Billy O’Neill, he’s got a chance to put his dedicated work ethic and ideas to the test. We decided to let Ben Karris ask him some questions. Here’s what Demetrios had to say. — ONE

Demetrios, first and foremost, let me begin this interview by congratulating you on your new post as USD Team Manager. Why don’t YOU begin this interview by spilling the beans, who is Demetrios George?
Thanks Ben I hope all is well… As for me, I just turned 23-years-old this June, I’ve been skating for 14 years, and will do my best to stay in as long as I can. I’m a healthy-minded guy with a healthy diet. I believe in taking care of yourself so that you can be better to the person next to you. I have a strong will to take care of people and support those around me. I was raised by some amazing Mediterranean parents and have a few older bros, one of which was always better than me at skating, name: Andre Stamenkovic. I plan on showing him off soon ’cause he can still kill it. I’m proud to say that ’cause he was always my inspiration in rollerblading. Anyways, many have seen me differently, but although I look up to the Future Prospect guys from the past I respect all in this sport. I stay humble and try my best to better myself everyday.



 

What exactly does your new role entail and what new responsibilities came along with the job? Basically, what does a team manager do?
I’d like to start by clarifying my position if you don’t mind. I share the responsibility of USD with Billy O’Neill. It’s more of a collaborative effort with USD, as well as all other Conference Teams. I am — in a sense, or at least I feel — like an overseer of all the Conference brands. My technical position is Conference Team Manager. I’ve always shown passion for the development of the Conference teams and brands. My goal, truly, is to contribute as much as I can to the stimulation of interest in the sport of rollerblading, and to do this the companies on top of the industry need to not only present themselves well, but provide products that are well-manufactured and distributed. So as it stands I answer endless amounts of emails, and I am in constant contact to provide my opinions on our product development, and our marketing tactics for both products and riders. Let’s just say I have my input towards the direction of the teams as a whole. Keep in mind I work closely with many people that are a part of the Conference brands, and I am far from the deciding factor. Many people have just as much impact; Matthias honored me with the title due to my consistent concern and willingness to take care of everyone, and I am only going to do my best to live up to my title.

You have been repping USD hard since day one, why should bladers support this company?
USD has and always will be the sickest company in my eyes because of the team they had: Arlo, Latimer, Petty, Feinberg, Zamora, Spizer, Shima, Fredericks, Rachard, and although now the generation of these rollerbladers has passed, a strong feeling of a gangster USD still resonates in my mind. I can’t help but do my best to represent like they did in the past. A strong team that was represented as a team! Today, USD provides quite a few products and skates, which in some ways is difficult and causes issues in production, distribution, etc. But on the other hand, it gives kids a plethora of choices to style their feet anyway they like, and have the option to change it up. I think USD has always done a good job of having some of the best-looking skates, and to top it off the Classic Throne; I mean come on, that had to be the best skate to ever be designed, especially at that time. Today I hope kids support USD and for the reasons that count. USD takes care of its riders, even if at some point we support too many riders, but the point being that USD is always in support of the rolling community and strives to take care of anybody who straps skates on their feet. I will always be a USD Head.



 

In some of our other interviews, we spoke with some guys who really hold true to the “skater-owned” mantra. The Conference kind of represents the other side of blading companies, and I am very interested to see what you think it is that rollerblading not only as an industry but as a culture needs?
Wow, well, to start I’d like to say I appreciate the in-depth questions but I must admit to anyone reading this that I am not your usual skater that will try and play it off all cool with some character or personality and a quick response. I, on the other hand, will probably end up typing too much and attempt to get more out of this. Not to be philosophical or try and act as if I have the answers, but to at least be real and true to what I love. So, “what does the industry need all together,” you ask; I must say flat out it needs Love. Love and Maturity. That’s it. People are so caught up in some idea of what skating is in their own minds, in their own worlds, whether it be the kids purchasing products, the kids being flowed, the pro skaters themselves or the heads of the industry that own the companies. To whom it may concern, in the end everyone must take the steps to create an ideal of respect and bring skating back to it’s original state. Having fun with your buddies, doing better tricks everyday, making things look smooth, traveling with friends to skate, showing off what you can do, these are things that attract us to rollerblading when we are young, but most of us did not know that it was going to take us into our adulthood. We had no idea that rollerblading was going to teach us to be who we are. I know on a personal level that I learned through rollerblading how to better myself as an individual. Through falling while attempting a trick but finding the courage to get back up and take a look at my mistakes, visualize myself being successful, and fully committing myself to that risk again. It shows us how to accomplish our goals, and if you open your eyes you’ll see that it can teach us to be mature, respectable adults. I only wanted to express my feelings on skating to make the point that people need to stop hating so much. Stop Hating! When will the community in rollerblading mature? We are a bunch of artists, struggling artists at that, and for there to be so much hate is crazy. Most importantly, parents go onto these websites only to see a very divided community that doesn’t seem to promote what we actually get out of it and in return we don’t don’t appeal to them, our sales are low, and our sport remains dormant. So on my end, I’m doing what I can to skate, stay happy and support rollerblading. Increase sales with a positive attitude and a representation of what skating does for me. As for The Conference brands being more corporate vs the whole “skater-owned” mantra, I have to somewhat disagree. The Conference brands has an open ear to all of the team. The skater has almost complete control over design and with consistent contact we actually direct where the company or companies go. Really, we have a lot of input, it just comes down to how much we, ourselves as the team, want to put into it. The Conference has been doing a lot to refine its ways and improve. I am happy to be a part of the brands.

 

When I met you at the first LA ALL Day event this year in April, I stood next to you, barely coming up to your shoulder, and you explained to me that the ledge from the ONEvideo that you tru-topsoul is taller than me. Do you have any special workout regiments that might explain your Lebron James-esque ups?
Funny you ask that because I am doing a little CTV edit of me doing a workout that keeps my legs strong, but I don’t really recommend doing the exercise until you have built a strong core. Look for it soon on CTV. As for overall health I do a few things: I eat healthy, meaning no fast food except some In n Out or Chipotle (yeah, I know); I do a lot of Fruit and Vegatable juicing at home (go and buy a Jack Lelane juicer and get serious); I don’t go to the gym but I do push ups, pull ups, and Pilates; and of course skate. There you go, that’s what I do so maybe it’ll help you jump high or stay positive, whichever you choose.



 

As team manager, you are witness to some amazing skating from your teammates. In your opinion, what makes for “good style?” Not in the “pantzzz” sense that the message board trolls use to define style but true, raw and real skating. What gets you juiced on someone’s tricks?
To be honest, I think you can just see it. Almost as if there is a level of confidence in the kid’s feet that he knows what he is doing,and is comfortable in that state. It doesn’t always have to be arms in perfect position or clean grinds, sometimes it can be harsh or flagrant, and yet the overall feeling grasped from when the trick is landed is awe. So truly, I look to just what appeals to my eye. Everyone sees it in their own way though, ’cause once again we are pretty much artists more than gymnasts, or at least in my eyes, so you can never really say what looks better than the other. We do know that some people just have undeniable style like Sagona, Rachard, O’Neill, the Kelsos, or people like Pianowski, Feinberg, and Aragon. My favs from the past like Latimer, Gillan, Julio are holding it down still… same with Zamora and Spizer. The list could go on, but there are some. Oh, and Jeff Fredericks, but basically if you look at those names you can get an idea of what skating I like. Hard hitting, gangster, we know what we’re doing style. FP

 

I’m pretty positive that I wasn’t the only one who really enjoyed all of the edits from the “In For the Kill Tour.” What can we expect from the USD team in the next couple of months, a team video perhaps?
Props go out to the team for pulling through with such a good tour, and to Watky for putting together the edits on spot endlessly. Right now you can expect a lot to come. I don’t want to spoil or piss anyone off by letting too much be known, but let’s just say there is an idea of how to push and start to do things right with our promotions and how we take care of the team. The “In For The Kill Tour” was just a start, along with the Introduction to CTV. Currently, there is a tour planned for October in Europe and you’ll see Chris Farmer, Jeff Stockwell and myself out there. I’m sure you can expect some CTV Edits to come along with this tour as well, but there is a different drive to the tour so we will see. As of now I can say that a future video is in mind. You’ll see.

Kind of unrelated to anything we’ve been talking about, but by birth I am 50% Greek, and for my 16th birthday I got to spend a month with my family that lives in Greece. Although I wasn’t skating at all during this time, the serene and tranquil Mediterranean waters and breathtaking views kind of provided me with that same sense of release. Have you ever been to the islands?
I wish I could say I have been to the islands, but I haven’t. I might attempt to visit this next time to Europe, so hopefully it works out. I know where you’re coming from when you say serene and tranquil because I have grown up in Wyoming, fishing and camping with snow capped mountains in the background, but as for islands I have yet to be as fortunate as you. To set the record straight, my father is full-blooded Greek and my mother is Armenian/Lebanese and grew up in Lebanon. My family is very cultured and close.

 

Before we bring this to a close, is there anything else that you would like to get across or anyone out there that you would like to thank?
I’ve pretty much said more than enough so I would like to let you all go, but first I will thank my mom, dad, and brother Andre for always being there as support. Randy Freshour, for pretty much getting me to start rollerblading. All the homies that support me like: Matt Miller, Alex Miranda, Sam Simpson, my brother Rachard ,just to name a few. As for my rolling support, thank you Matthias for always having faith in my passion and giving me the opportunity to be where I am within your companies today. Thanks to all the rollerbladers, freestyle rollers, and skaters that support everyone. I hope we can all work together, skate together. Peace. — Demetrios George

Questions © 2009 Ben Karris



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