Day One Skate Shop | Bridgeport, Connecticut

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

WORDS BY HANDSOME JACK MACKERAL

Jeff Walsh started Day One Skate Shop on June 21, 2005 in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Isn’t that some kind of holiday? I can’t remember. He first came to my attention for his silly video celebrating ‘Bobby Worrest Day.’ In it Jeff is seen skating, hanging out with and professing his R rated love for a cardboard cutout of Bobby Worrest. The original video ended with Bobby Worrest’s mouth being used as a gloryhole and was so funny that Jim Theibeaud is honoring Jeff with a special edition Day One Skate Shop Spitfire wheel.

Bobby Worrest Day

I called to discuss this with him as well as the shenanigans that transpired on the Red Bull Jersey Barrier he and other east coast shops received last summer. Instead of dragging it to a place with perfect flat ground or inner city chic graffiti in the background he took it to a bar. Not a flatbar, a pub style bar if that’s not redundant.
When I heard that I envisioned a grizzled man setting up shots on it or confiding in it like a drinking buddy.
I was actually a little let down to learn that tricks were in fact performed. I must concede, the skaters looked to be having fun on it, earning shots for tricks landed and my mood lightened when I saw Cardboard Bobby Worrest’s NBD combos on it!

Showtime at Third Base

Jeff is originally from Rochester, New York, home of serial killer ‘Arty Shawcross’.
‘Oh yeah, Arty’ Jeff says as though reminiscing about an eccentric uncle, ‘they closed my high school one day when they found one of his hookers in the woods nearby.’
Jeff’s gleeful memories made me wonder if his gloryhole video didn’t belie a more sinister character beneath an absurd front?
Asides carrying products from all the smaller east coast companies such as Coda, Bodega,  Debris, 5Boro and Traffic, he also prints his own shop decks.
‘I try to do graphics specific to the region.’
‘Like that Travis the chimpanzee who mauled his owner’s friend? That was in Connecticut’ I offered.
‘Oh yeah dude, can you imagine?
He ate her hands!
He ate face!
What the fuck is she thinking having that thing around? Jeff’s asks rhetorically, sounding amped.
‘Yeah, that could’ve been The End of Andrew Reynolds. I remember an interview where he was scared of that monkey.’
‘Right dude, we’re gonna do a whole series of shop decks, Travis the chimp, the elephant who stomps his trainer, the deer who boxes that asshole hunter who sprayed himself with female deer piss. It’s gonna be sick!’

Asides his insubordinate animal apologetics, I get the feeling he’s a wicked down skater/shopkeep. He comes back on the phone after dealing with a customer, ‘the kid asked for a Rob Dyrdek deck, I suggested the mall. Don’t get me wrong, I love Alien, I’m just out right now.’
Another customer comes and leaves, ‘I’m always skeptical when a guy in his 20s comes in and wants to get into skating.  I question their motivations.’
‘A hundred bucks is a hundred bucks’ I offer.
‘Sure, I just don’t feel right about it.’

I liked him for saying that. I came away with the impression he’s a lot like Dennis Hopper’s character ‘Feck’ from River’s Edge. Feck had killed his lover 20 years ago and replaced her with a blowup doll that he referred to as Ellie and treated just like his real one. He was a little mad and he knew it but he still lived according to a moral code. He gave away weed to all his high schooler friends but he shot one of their group for killing a girl he didn’t love. Feck meant it and Jeff means it too.
I’m not saying Jeff would kill anyone for abusing skateboarding but I wouldn’t be totally surprised if he and Cardboard Bobby Worrest don’t stick around hours after Day One Skate Shop closes watching animal attack videos or discussing the finer points of different rippers’ styles.
Maybe sharing that special dope Feck promised?

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

Day One Skate Shop

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