Ben Bogart is one of the few snowboarders that has figured himself out. He hasn’t followed any trends regarding his pant size, or eyewear choice, and has always snowboarded out of pure enjoyment. While so many snowboarders spend their time in the gym, going to bed early, and worrying about this and that, Ben has held true to a more historic approach to snowboarding. One that involves late nights, early mornings, and a whole lot of fun whenever he is awake. Skill wise, Ben had no objections to trick suggestions when taking photos for this interview, and his past and future Think Thank parts should back him up as well. Overall, this hump day gives you a look inside one funny, outgoing, and positive character.
Yobeat: How Tall are you?
Ben: Tall enough.
Yobeat: Tallest girl you’ve ever gotten with?
Ben: Wow, I think I got taken advantage of four years ago in Government Camp by a really super tall chick with dreads. I don’t remember her name.
Yobeat: How do you feel about that?
Ben: Well, getting raped is never fun. But as long as your wiener’s wet, that’s all that matters right?
Yobeat: How did beast woman end up raping you?
Ben: Well it was years ago, but it was on my birthday, my 21st birthday. I’m sitting at the bar at Charlie’s out here in Government Camp wasted and out of no where I find myself in the corner. I had just gotten done taking a piss and this broad walks up that I had never even talked to and comes up to me and starts just rape kissing me. I was wasted, so I rolled with it. She dragged me into the womens bathroom and took advantage of my dick, which you know any other normal person would be psyched on that shit. But it was the fact that I had no idea who the fuck this chick was. But yeah, pretty much got raped at Charlie’s on my 21st birthday.
Yobeat: By a huge bitch with dreads.
Ben: She wasn’t fat at all but she was at least like a foot taller than me. She had to bend down and pick me up to pick to kiss me on the lips and shit but uh, yeah dude she just fuckin’ bent over and made out with me and dragged me into the bathroom and that was that. Not my proudest moment in my fucking life. But why hold back?
Pressing noses with ladies and rails.
Yobeat: I’ve seen you on the dance floor and you’re pretty confident.Â Are you an Italian Stallion?
Ben: I dunno man, I just like girls and I figure if you can make a girl smile you can… I dunno, I like girls though. But if I can make them smile then that’s the ticket. So just be fun and be happy and cruise around and maybe they’ll just grab your shoulders and take you into the bathroom. Sometimes it’s not your fault. Dancing is the shit, I love dancing. Music is the rhythm of life man, you get out there on the dance floor and don’t give a fuck, girls see you feelin’ it and maybe they don’t give a fuck too. But, Burtner has called me the Italian Stallion before.
Yobeat: Why does everyone think you are Mexican?
Ben: Uh cuz I’ve got the brownest skin any Italian has ever had. I’m from Sicily so I don’t know if that matters. They’ve got browner skin than the north.
Yobeat: Have you ever worked any manual labor?
Ben: Oh you mean Emanuel labor? Fuck yeah, I was out in Colorado with my homie Ned and his dad owns a construction company so I was out there working on roofs and building houses. So yeah working out there in the hot summer days building houses I’ve definitely done that. Definitely spent time with my share of Mexicans, and they’ve definitely tried to drop some Latino language on me and I don’t know what the fuck they’re talking about so I just look back and smile and they look at me like I’m fucking retarded. They look back at me like I’m fucking retarded because I should know what they’re talking about. But uh, oh well all I say is, “No hablo espanol.â€? Then they look at me like a fucking idiot because I should know that shit but whatever. I tell them I’m Italian but of course that’s pretty close to the same lingo so they still think I’m an idiot. Maybe I should learn though because if I’m going to have fools trying to talk to me in Latino languages my whole life it would be nice to know what’s going on. Also it would be nice to get on a Latino woman, I’ve never had one of those. So maybe learning some Latin languages would help in that department.
Yobeat: Are you trying to pull a continent crush?
Ben: What’s that?
Yobeat: One girl from each race.
Ben: Ooo, I’ve definitely dabbled in other races before but it’s not necessary… well now that you mention it why the fuck not.
Yobeat: So you’re Sicilian, do you got Mob connections?
Ben: Uh no, but I was adopted into the family of Bogarts. My dad always told me I was related to Humphrey Bogart, he was my grandfather’s second cousin, so that’s a pretty cool little fun fact. So he’s not a mobster but he’s an actor. As far as my heritage goes I really don’t have much knowledge about any of it. My dad skipped out on my mom when he found out my natural mom was pregnant at 17 years-old. That was all off in Italy before I was born and so my mom had me in Alaska because she always wanted to go to the states and see what Alaska was like. So my current parents, flew her out there, they had been speaking previously, and uh, that’s that. So as far as Italian Mob connections I could have them, who knows.
Look at the extension on the left side.
Yobeat: Where are you from?
Ben: Anchorage, Alaska.
Yobeat: Alaskans get a yearly check from the government, do you?
Ben: I used to, until I moved out and they cut giving me a “Gâ€? a year. It was pretty nice for a while, just splurged and bought a bunch of shit for my car, bought a bunch of shit like DVDs and candy, but it all had to stop.
Yobeat: So when and why did you leave Alaska?
Ben: Well, I was already filming for Burtner’s movie which was JB Deuce at the time and uh, I was like 17 going on 18 and basically Burtner told me that if I wanted to make any sort of career out of snowboarding it would be smart to move out and go to someplace that is a bit more “on the map” as they say in the snowboard world. I decided to move out to Tahoe which was a pretty good move because a lot of my friends were out there already. So I moved out there and spent like four years in Tahoe just to see where snowboarding would take me. Just see what this snowboard career was worth or whatever, so I moved out and tried to make something happen I guess.
Yobeat: Where do you get your gangster swagger from?
Ben: I dunno man? I guess if you check photos I’ve had from being a little kid I always had like a little chain or something on. I always liked rap music, it gave me inspiration and I always liked those gangster beats. Lil John always had me hyped on my snowboard so I was loving that shit. Then my other friends be cultured like Travis Kennedy, I pretty much grew up with that kid. We would go to Boarderline camp together and he was just like an inspiration to me. We were both feeding off each other at the time so we hung out a little bit back then. So I guess I get my inspiration from that.
Yobeat: You were both on Forum, when Forum dropped one of you did the other follow because of your friendship?
Ben: Well not really. I guess they just don’t like that G-code shit. I dunno, I was putting in work but couldn’t pay the bills so I had to move on. I got a better deal with Monument. My old team manager from Option has always had my back, and he had it this time, and got me on Monument and and got me a good deal. Cobra Dogs is hooking me up, Cobra Corey, giving me those dogs. Keep myself full. Keeping me full of wieners.
Pure shock from Cobra Dog employee Matty Mo.
Yobeat: Top five rappers?
Ben: Woah, damn that shit varies. Right now I’m feeling this homie Dump, he’s this super low key guy. I dunno you can find him on Myspace. He’s from Atlanta, Georgia. I’m feeling Slim Thug, he’s fire. Uh, let’s see, probably Lil John, he’s always been a favorite of mine because he doesn’t give a fuck and has always made whatever he wants. He always kept me hyped as a young fool, so as long as he’s keeping me hyped that’s all that matters. That’s a good top three.
Yobeat: Biggie or Tupac?
Ben: Ooo, it varies month to month man. I’ll go on tips where I’m loving, lovin’, the Tupac. I won’t claim that Biggie is better but I’ll throw in his CD and love it. I got mad love for both of them. It’s hard to tell, but, at this moment I’d say I’m feeling Biggie.
Yobeat: How do you like filming with Think Thank?
Ben: It’s fucking amazing, it’s the best film crew, no drama, all homies, it’s basically like comedy the entire winter. Just making jokes, quoting movies, almost dying in car accidents. I dunno Burtner is the man with all the new shit and inspiration, he keeps everyone on their toes. I mean I’m sure filming with other people is fun too, it would be nice to try that shit out too, but for now it seems to be working out for sure. I guess it’s good chemistry, good people to ride with.
Yobeat: Almost dying in car accidents?
Ben: This year I almost fucking died. We were driving down the road and we hit this intersection, right. It was a highway but I guess it had lights, we were rolling through this stoplight and this car tries to cut across the entire intersection to go into a turning lane. Cuts us off, and forces us into a red. Low and behold there is a semi-truck there and we are going 65 mph into the back of a semi, we turn left, into oncoming traffic. We had no idea if there were any cars in that intersection while cars are going both ways past us, we had enough room to squeeze through, miss oncoming traffic, and get back into our lane. It all happened in like six seconds? Eight seconds? Mind you we are driving in Johnny Miller’s car, he has a Chrysler Pacifica which is just packed full of everything, like seats full, two filmers all their camera gear all our snowboard gear, (Nick) Visconti, Tim Eddy, myself, (Jesse) Burtner, Gus Engle, and maybe Larson. We’re all sitting in the car pale faced, and Burtner is all, “Who’s lucky to be alive?â€? and we all raised our hands. He was filming the whole time.
Just checking out the view.
Yobeat: Any other brushes with death?
Ben: No, no other brushes with death this year but I’ve had a few homies pass away. Definitely pour some drinks out for those fools.
Yobeat: Worst fall you’ve ever had?
Ben: Three years ago I fell in a fucking contest and blew my knee out. It stopped my season for like ten months because it happened in February and I had surgery in March. I had the whole summer to recover and I was in Tahoe, the next winter sucked, that was pretty shitty. So it wasn’t the worst crash I’ve taken, but it was the worst of my career because it stopped it for like ten months.
Yobeat: You lived in SLC this winter, you feel like snowboarders are picked on by the police there?
Ben: Fuck yeah, profiling and shit. Those guys see someone with long hair, a big ass t-shirt, anyone for that matter, anyone with buttery style. Someone like Cale (Zima) or Jonah (Owen), ya know either way you look like as long as you have a snowboard in your hand, or a skateboard, they are always gunna keep an eye on you. Those guys definitely pick you out in SLC. When they run up on you and you’re fucking jibbing they show no mercy. So don’t get caught in Salt Lake doing nothing bad, ‘cuz they’ll take you to the clanker. Might catch a case or something, who knows.
Seriously, look at that extension.
Yobeat: You’ve worked at High Cascade for a couple of years, what is the craziest shit you’ve seen happen?
Ben: Craziest shit that I’ve seen? I’ve seen some gnarly shit at the bars, people get wasted and piss drunk, and slap people at the bars. I’ve seen that shit happen, first hand, not my hand but this place has no law. The fights that go on around here go off, lots of beers and no law so the craziest shit I’ve seen is a bar fight that happened a few nights ago. One of the old companies that I used to ride for that dropped me for whatever reason I dunno, decided to come up and ask me if I was cool. It ended up a fight between me and that person. I told him to talk to me when he was sober, that it was retarded for him to talk to me when he was hammered. He didn’t like that shit at all so he open handed me and proceeded to get tackled and choked out by the entire local community of Government Camp. He got thrown out of the bar. But whatever you know, I don’t hold judgment, fuckin’ keep your head high and withhold judgment man. I don’t got hate for no one.
Yobeat: Words to live by?
Ben: Always be yourself. Once you start changing for other people you start losing your identity. Also, don’t judge a book by its cover. Lots of my good friends are good friends because of who they are, not because of what they look like. Remember who you are, it’ll take you a long way.