Memoirs of a Team Manager With Charlie Thomas

Memoirs of a Team Manager With Charlie Thomas

Memoirs of a Team Manager With Charlie Thomas

Memoirs of a Team Manager With Charlie Thomas

Memoirs of a Team Manager With Charlie Thomas

Retarded antics like this dumb trick almost led to James Atkins, his TM Charlie Thomas, and the rest of the crew being exposed to SARS. This sequence sums it all up. Sequence: Dan Zaslavsky

YOU THINK YOUR JOB IS DIFFICULT? IMAGINE MANAGING A TEAM OF SKATEBOARDERS DURING A TIME OF A WORLDWIDE PANDEMIC. LONGTIME TEAM MANAGER CHARLIE THOMAS FACES ONE SUCH HORROR STORY BELOW AND LIVES TO TELL US ABOUT IT.

Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is a respiratory disease in humans caused by the coronavirus. There has been one near pandemic to date, between November 2002 and July 2003, with 8,096 known infected cases and 774 deaths. At the time of this “near pandemic” I was the Team Manager at TumYeto (the home of Foundation, Toy Machine, Pig, Ruckus and Hollywood). We had planned a tour with the Hollywood guys in Canada. The World Health Organization issued warnings that no one should travel in Canada if they didn’t have to. Despite warnings we decided it was just skateboarding and it would be a fun trip. The crew consisted of Kris Markovich, Richie Belton, James Atkin, Justin Roy, Nuge, Rags, Shad Lambert, myself and our driver Ryan. We had an RV and the tour went across Canada from west to east. When we got to Vancouver we posted up for a few days. One night Kris was hanging out with the guys in the “Party Room” and after a while, he came to get me because James and Justin, he said, both looked like the needed to go to the hospital. James had a red line starting at his bicep heading towards his heart and Justin’s hand was twice its size and puffy. A couple of nights before they got wasted and thought it would be cool to brand themselves with the TDS medallions they had hanging from their necklaces. They heated up their medallions with lighters and burnt it into there skin. James went for the inside of his bicep and Justin the top of his hand. A couple of days later they both were showing signing of serious infections and could barely move.

Ryan, the driver, was nice enough to volunteer to take them to the hospital. Since this was about 2 am, I was happy to let him take them and told him to call me if they needed anything. The hospital was the last place that I wanted to be with the SARS outbreak all over Canada! About 20 minutes later Ryan called me and said that neither of the guys had any money and they needed me to come down to and take care of the bill.

The moment I walked in, it was just the sketchiest thing that I have ever seen. Before I even made it into the lobby I had to be fully sanitized. I was directed to the billing department and the lady I was dealing with had a mask, gloves, and full scrubs on. I started freaking out because I was the only one without the mask on. They wouldn’t let me check on Justin and James. They made me wait for them in the lobby area. The lobby was like a scene from the movie 28 days Later or some kind of horror movie dealing with pandemics, so I went back and waited in the RV. After a few hours someone came and got me and said the doctor wanted to talk to me.

I had to go through the whole sanitation routine and everyone in masks. The doctor told me they were both on IVs and gave me a prescription for the both of them. I paid the $200 bill and by the time it was all said and done, it was almost 9am. All we wanted to do was get as far away from the hospital as possible but we got caught in traffic for a couple of hours. This was a nightmare that I’d like to forget.

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