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Kazu Kokubo makes it Snowboarding 1 : Olympics 0

Style icon Kazu Kokubo. Photo: Moran/Burton

Ban This Killer Craze.

That’s a maybe obscure reference to a headline the British Daily Mail ran back in the day, back when the FIS hated snowboarders, the Olympics hated snowboarders, the resorts hated snowboarders, the press hated snowboarders… hell, damn near everyone hated snowboarders. Now, as we know, everyone loves snowboarding and the greenbacks they can print off the back of it, unless, it seems, snowboarders act like themselves.

It appears that Japanese pipe slasher Kazuhiro Kokubo had a bunch of people in suits all up tight by his rocking up to Japan’s Olympic team flight from Tokyo “sporting dreadlocks and low-slung trousers.” According to the Telegraph, he then made light of the incident claiming the Games were “nothing special” and “just another snowboarding event.”

Unsurprisingly, the Ski Association of Japan – who we picture as a well dressed bunch with a taste for fine Italian shoes and polo necks – spat the dummy, yanked young Kazu from the opening ceremony and wanted to ship him back to Japan in a rat-infested cage with nothing but straw to eat. It seems, however, his second, more sincere, apology did the trick.

We’ll now get to see Kazu strut his samurai skills tomorrow in the pipe that might just be rideable thanks to the hard work of the shaping crew and the rocket scientists who decided to hold the snowboarding close to below sea level.

In an age where snowboarding is more mainstream than ever, it’s great to see some riders evoking the good old days and pissing the establishment way the hell off.  Kazu, we salute you.

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