This is an article that was supposed to run in this issue of Focus, but for one reason or another it didn't. Only marshall's over noseblunt did. Major bummer because we all worked really hard on it. But whadyagonnado, stuff like this happens. Figured I'd post it here for you guys to see and read. I'm not gonna post Spice and Pierce's photos because they may be used for something in the future, so sorry about the no skating pictorials. Maybe i'll include the article in the next Visivo zine or something too. enjoy.
A couple of years ago when I first started shooting in Jersey, people would always tell me about this dude named Bill who was killing it. My good friend Jersey Dave can take credit for spilling the beans on him first, “You gotta come skate with this dude Bill, he's seriously so good and stylish, you can definitely get a good flick with him.” Then I remembered that my friend Joe would always hype up this kid Bill, and would talk along the lines of how he’ll try any rail and that he’s got shit on lock. The next time a spoke to him I said, “Bill? From south Jersey?” He responded, “Yea, he’s from south Jersey, he’s real good man, he’s going to Montclair next year.” Oh sick, so he seems pretty diverse, and we’ll be going to the same school. Sounds like a prime formula for a good photo opportunity if you ask me. Then a little while down the road I started hearing more things about him and how he was skating an obscure spot somewhere or something -- enough was enough. I needed to get in contact with this dude and just shoot something already. I think this is right around the time that alcohol started killing my braincells because it made sense in my head that this was one person. But as I would later find out, through several people laughing at me, that this “Bill” was not one Bill, but three. A “Billfecta” if you will. Three Bill's working simultaneously together to form the unstoppable powers of the Billfecta.
Alright, maybe that was a little overboard. There aren’t any superpowers involved, and they’re not exactly holding each others hands all the time. They’re just good at riding skateboards. Three Bill’s, all friends from south jersey, all good skateboarders, all attending the same school, and yes, all living in the same house. But as much as these three have in common, they all have individual styles and approaches to skating. Which, when you get them together to skate, turns out to be a really fun experience.
Besides each of them having a unique outlook on skating, they also each have different personalities (woa, really?). I know, it’s obvious, but this really is an eclectic group of human beings. Just take a look at this sicko, Bill Marshall. He’s a fiend for three things-- caffeine, horror movies, and skateboarding. When I lived with him I would get up to use the bathroom at 2 am, and there would be Marshall, tapping into what was probably his third two liter bottle of coke of the day, and watching some obscure horror flick. I know it’s been said about people before and you're going to think it's stupid, but the man is seriously a machine both on and off his skateboard. This over noseblunt was something that Bill had been wanting to do for a long time, but it was just a matter of finding the right spot. Pfhh, that’s a good one --”the right spot.” Is there ever a good spot to do an over noseblunt on? Let alone on a hubba? This is photographic proof of what a sicko Marsh is. I don’t like to hype up how hard spots are to skate (you should already know that if it's in this mag), but if you went there yourself, you would see the giant hole that he’s noseblunting through is only covered with a piece of duct tape. Just take my word for it, this is not a spot you would try this trick on.
The one other thing that these Bill's do have in common is that they’re all modest as hell. Countless times I’ve suggested tricks to any three of them, and they all give me the same damn response. “Eh, I don’t know, I guess I could do that, I don’t know though,” only to be walking away later that evening with a buttery trick under their belt.
Take this photo of Bill Spice for instance. This photo was one of the rare times that he took a step out of the cement park to skate street, and look what we ended up with. Bill was having his doubts on being able to get a trick on this steep wall, but with a little nudge in the right direction, there was classic Spice, riding up to the wall in his slip-ons, and 5-0ing a wall that most people only stall on. I think most people will agree with me when I say that Bill Spice is one of my favorite skateboarders. You know when you see someone step on their board and you immediately think “Woa, he’s probably good.” Well, Bill has that. I’m not sure if it’s because of all the salt water in his blood, but Spice is so fluid on his board he actually looks like he’s surfing on the sidewalk. A corny anology, I know, but just wait for his part in New Thirsty and you’ll see what I mean.
Like I said before, going skating with these guys is a real experience. Marshall will eat more fast food than you thought was humanly possible (triple quad stacks), Spice will make you wish that you were as cool and calm as he is, and Pierce, well, he's kind of an odd ball.
He has an over abundance of amazingly weird things to say, and has the ability to make me say “Holy crap, I need to write that down” and "What the fuck did he just say?" at least a dozen times a day. It also makes driving in the car and looking for spots that much more enjoyable. I can’t count how many times we’ve all driven around and laughed so hard about nothing that people must’ve thought we’ve been smokin' that treep the whole time.
Like his Bill counterparts, he may not think it, but he’s got some talent. Pretty close to deadline we tried to get this trick, but mother nature decided it would be a good idea to shit on us and rain, leaving us with two options: Leave and try and get a trick at another spot that was dry, or try it and sacrifice his board. Well, he tried the latter and it didn’t quite work out as planned as he wound up getting his shoes and socks soaking wet. To normal people this would mean stop skating, but Pierce decided to skate it more and went and manualed the whole thing -- barefoot on a soaked board. Plain and simple, Pierce likes having fun on his skateboard. Watching him skate around the streets of NY is like watching a little kid run around a toy store after eating too much candy, jumping on and over everything. On top of being really good at having fun, he’s also the king of finding weird crap on the internet (teradactyl porn anyone?). But internet lurking aside, Pierce has a unique eye, and has a knack for knowing what tricks look good at each spot.
So as you can see, skating with these guys is fun. Every session has no pressure and it never feels like we need to get something done, even though more often than not, we do. And come to think of it, if there was one Bill with all of their traits combined, that person would be one truly fucked up individual. Cheers to the Billfecta.