What I have learned so far on my trip to Europe is that nothing in life is free. While it’s true that Bataleon and Lobster Snowboards graciously booked my plane ticket to London, and Monster Energy is taking care of my hospitality while I travel with the movie tour, I am paying for this trip in irreparable liver damage. In fact, within 24 hours of being in London (the first stop), I lost my jacket, hat, passport, and half of a tooth. I really can’t complain though, as I retrieved the passport, and I can say with certainty that this has been the wildest outing of my life.
My official purpose on this trip is to MC the events for the two movies premiering at each stop. The first is the BYNDXMDLS movie featuring Kevin Backstrom, Tor Lundstrom, Brendan Gerard, which was edited by Ryan Scardigli (Diggles, duh). It’s short and sweet, as it’s comprised of highlights from the online episodes, as well as a couple new clips. The second movie is MasterBayTable, Sexual Snowboarding’s newest creation, containing new and old members of the beloved Europeon snowboard crew. Parts from Ethan Morgan, Nils Arvidson, Eiki and Haldor make the movie entertaining and easy to get people hyped for (the official job of an MC, of course.)
The tour will take us to London, Stockholm, Tallinn, Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Innsbruck, so I will break this journey into two post, and rate them on a 5 Stan Scale. (1 Stan being the worst, 5 Stans being the best)
London is fucking massive. Apparently 15 Paris-sized cities could fit within it. To me, this was perhaps the least memorable stop of the trip thus far, partly due to the fact that I had been to London before, but also the fact that I was legitimately blacked out half of the time I was there. Saying “what’s up London!” in a scenario that was remotely justified was definitely a fulfillment of some rockstar fantasy. Or should I say Monster fantasy. The afterparty donned several free bottles of liquor and a magician named Jerry who made things appear in Haldor’s shoe.
Highlight: Experiencing the UK Snow dome culture. The second day in the UK we drove a couple hours outside London to a place called Milton-Keynes. It’s an indoor snow dome within a mall. Inevitably, the scene inside blends “mall kid” with “snowboarder” 0h so well.
Simply put, Stockholm is a beautiful city. It’s no wonder there are so many recognizable spots that have been hit by Jed Anderson, Nick Dirks, Gus Engle and countless others. Beyond that, everyone is dressed like they are in a Kanye West fashion show, and the girls are all tens. Though Kevin denies this, he is a celebrity in Stockholm, and was able to get us into the most Posh VIP club in the city. Like a scene out of a movie, we walked by a giant line of people waiting to get in and the bouncer threw his arm out in from of me, aiming to stop my under-dressed, bug-eyed ass from entering swank town, but Diggles spoke up that we were with Kevin. Once inside we hung out in the cathedral-looking club and eventually went to an even more VIP club WITHIN THE FIRST CLUB.
Highlight: Skating by myself around the city in the morning. This trip is pretty scheduled and the stops are tight and full of meetings with shops for signings, so the fact I got to escape and see the city for a few hours was something I appreciated immensely. The other highlight would of course be that I made it into the most exclusive club in Sweden wearing a sweatshirt and slip ons.
Tallink Ferry from Sweden to Estonia – 6 Stans
Rather than fly from Stockholm to Tallinn, a Monster tour bus picked us up in Stockholm at 3 pm the day after the premiere. This bus is absolutely insane: There’s a lounge area with couches, a kitchen, and a conference room in the back complete with a glass table, Big Screen TV, an X-Box. Perhaps most importantly the bus also contains Stu and Oliver, two absolutely hilarious British blokes who drive it all over Europe for various events. We drove a couple minutes to the ferry and parked the bus inside a massive cruise ship. We then walked up five flights of stairs to enter into a casino-looking boat cabin and immediately got to drinking champagne. The ferry drive is 15-hours long and overnight, so the boat is equipped with several restaurants, stores, a dance club, and a full theater. Skinny hallways resembling those from The Shining mazed around each floor and led you to various rooms each, blasting their own special brand of house music.
After a hearty meal and several bottles of wine, we made our way down to the theater and casino where we sat at table and watched entertainment acts varying from American Pop music cover bands, to mesh-laden men doing sexually suggestive dance routines with fog billowing from behind them.
Highlight: Waking up at 8 am with a champagne hangover and walking to the store barefoot to get water. The tables have turned. Everyone stares in awe at ME about what they are seeing. To their credit, I look like a complete mad man at this point, and I have not taken my coon skin hat off for two straight days.
Like Stockholm, Tallinn is another beautiful Eastern European city with tight cobblestone roads and century-old buildings. The only reason it didn’t get the highest remarks was I showed up there feeling like such a pile after the ferry I couldn’t really explore it properly. After allowing a statue of a baby to pee in my mouth for a photo, the crew went to the local board shop, Surf House, where Haldor, Eiki, Kevin, Tor, Diggles and Johannes answered some interview questions from the owner of the shop. I liked this premiere stop a great deal as the after party felt like the most genuine interaction between the locals and traveling team. Other nights the crew would end up disbanded by the end of the night, but in Estonia we hung together and drank with the locals for a solid 4 or 5 hours and had a lot of hard laughs. To the people of Tallinn: YOU GUYS GO HARD, TAKE CARE OF THE BALLOON BELLIED MAN! (Sorry, you had to be there)
Highlight: We ate dinner at a place called Old Hansa, a traditional Estonian restaurant with no electricity and the people dressed in medieval garb. Our waiter asked the most handsome, powerful and agile guest to identify themself as the “table master,” so naturally I selected myself and was referred to as “Master Stan” by the waiter the whole night. I was given power over the night in important decisions such as, who gets to drink, when should we get more food, and most importantly, required to give a toast before drinking a very strong-tasting pepper Schnapps. I told everyone, including the Estonian media that had joined us for dinner, they all owed me their first born child.
Now we drive for two straight days in the Monster bus to Warsaw, Poland. Talk of Berlin being the gnarliest stop of the trip has me in fear of my life, for I can’t even imagine partying harder than we have already, but as we commonly say on the trip, “Let’s Send it, huh?”
https://yobeat.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/EURO1Featured.jpg13332000Justin Leveillehttp://yobeat.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/yobeatdotcomsite.jpgJustin Leveille2015-09-29 15:59:032015-09-29 19:30:52Europe - A Five Stan Review: Part 1