Flip's new am Oscar Meza has been on a killing spree as of late. In this special edition of Am On Rye, the young Angelino discusses his life growing up in LA, his upcoming interview in The Skateboard Mag and explains just what it's like to get a call from Arto Saari out of the blue to go skate. Have a read.
Photos: Brian Walnum
What was it like growing up in LA?
It was super rad, man. I instantly fell in love with the concrete jungle when I got introduced to skateboarding. There was always a new area to explore and our bus missions as a kid were endless. We didn't care what direction the train or bus was going because we always knew there was gonna be something to skate on the other side. It was epic then and is still epic now.
How old were you when you started skating and how did you get into it?
I was ten years old when I was first introduced to skateboarding. My older brother Sergio Meza got me into it. I remember I just used to ride my board on my knees and storm around down the street on it. It wasn't until a few months after that that my brother started showing me 411 videos. Rodney Mullen VS. Daewon Song was one of my favorite videos. That’s the video that inspired me to actually learn how to ride my board standing up. I’ve been hooked ever since.
Who are some of the pros you looked up to as a kid and why?
I was always and still am fascinated by the stuff Rodney Mullen would do. I also liked Muska a lot. He was my favorite character to play with in the first Tony Hawk Pro Skater game. He was the ****! Then when I was in middle school I saw Koston, Arto, Gareth Stehr, Heath and Reynolds. I was amazed by all of them and wanted to be as good as them one day and still do
You hang out with the Wassup Rockers crew. How did that come about? Why weren't you in the movie?
Yeah, those are the homies! They all went to Locke High before they did the movie so that’s where I met Kico. It’s a funny story actually. I guess someone had told him there was a new kid in the school that was better then him or there was rumors going around. So one day after school he saw me and asked me to play SKATE with him. I did and ended up losing. He was already really good. After that we were pretty cool and talked some, but I didn't really hang out with the whole crew. When they started filming for the movie they all dropped out of school and I didn't see them for a long time. It wasn't until the day of the movie premiere that I ran into Kico again. Soon after that he started bringing me out to skate and introduced me to the whole BLVD fam and just I just became homies with everyone. It was nothing but good times after that.
Arto was the first person from Flip you met, right? How did you guys start hanging out?
I knew Louie and Langi already, but we never really skated together much. But yeah, Arto was the first one from Flip to bring me out to skate and introduce me to some of the other guys. He got my number from Gary and Lisa over at Destructo and randomly called me one day. I seriously couldn't believe it. He told me he had seen my mag minute and was hyped on it and asked if i wanted to come out and skate sometime. So of course i was like, hell yea! Man, I was so stoked! He called me that next weekend and brought me out to skate with the bros. It was sick!
How did you start riding for Flip?
Things just kinda happened. One day Arto and I were in the car coming back from San Clemente and the conversation just kinda went towards us talking about the team and stuff and he asked me what I thought about everyone and I told him that I loved how everyone was so amazingly rad and cool with me. He just smiled and told me that everyone on the team is stoked on me too. I was so amazingly stoked. I couldn't believe it. Things just kinda went from that conversation to making a few moves and making things happen and we did. So happy to be a part of the Flip fam.
How's it been going? Who from the team do you skate with and hang out with the most?
Everything's going great. I try to have sessions with everyone and Andrew our TM is really good at having us all come together skate and have BBQs and stuff so it’s rad. I'd have to say I've hung out more with Arto. We've become good friends.
You haven't been on a proper Flip tour yet. Are you stoked for that?
Man, you don't know how much it would mean to be on a Flip tour. I am amazingly stoked for that day!
You're working on a Flip web video part right now. How's that coming along? Do you have any tricks you still want to get for your part?
Yeah, I am and it’s coming along okay I would say. I've been able to go out and get the clips I've been wanting to get, so that’s good. I try not to stress over specific tricks so much. I'm just taking my skating as it comes.
You're also working on your "New Jack" interview in The Skateboard Mag. How's that going? This is going to be your first major interview, right?
Yeah, big thanks to everyone over at The Skateboard Mag. It's going good and I'm almost done actually. It’s my first major interview in a mag so hopefully everyone enjoys it.
What's your least favorite trick to do?
I'd have to say regular heel flips.
What's your favorite trick to do?
What’s something most people don't know about you?
I love roller coasters!
What's your set-up right now?
8.2 Flip P2 board with Mob Grip, 81/4 Destrcuto trucks and 52' Autobahn wheels.
Who's your favorite up-and-coming am right now?
Trevor Colden. He rips and is a chill ass dude.
What does the future hold for Oscar Meza?
Just living life as it comes. If god gives me more days and nights we'll see what he puts in front of me.