(Steve Cave) First off, can you tell me a little bit about your start in skateboarding and when you first felt like you made it.
(Andy Macdonald) Hmmmm (laughs) I started in skateboarding when I was 12 years old, and it wasnt an issue of making it or not - it was just the funnest thing that I knew how to do. So, I did all the team sports all through high school but skateboarding came along and all the team sports went out the window. Just felt like, you know, not having a regimented training schedule and a coach telling you, If you want to be the best this is how you have to do it, blah blah blah. Just the freedom and the self expression that comes along with skateboarding is what attracted me to it.
For the first 6 years of skateboarding it wasnt an issue, it wasnt like, oh, I want to make it! But by the time I [was] a junior in high school or something, I had decided that this is what I wanted to be, I wanted to get paid to skateboard, I wanted to be a pro skateboarder.
I grew up in Boston. I moved to California right after high school. No easy road but eventually I got my first pro contract that said, Well pay you X amount of dollars to hawk skateboards, and youll have your own signature model skateboard, residuals from it or whatever. That was the first time I felt like, wow, I made it!
Everybody was leaving, and I wasnt going to college. I was driving out to the west coast to follow my dream of being a pro skateboarder. A lot of my people including my family were like, What are you talking about? Pro skateboarder? You cant make money doing that, you need to go to college, get an education, blah blah blah. So when I got my first pro contract I wrote in big red letters I told you so on the front of it, sent it to my mom!
(Cave) (laughing) what do they think now?
(Andy Macdonald) Now they are happy with my career choice!
(Cave) Yeah, I bet! What do you do to prepare for skateboarding?
(Andy Macdonald) For some reason I have this rep in the industry as being this trainer. maybe it comes from the fact that I dont drink or smoke, I dont do much partying but those werent decisions made solely on, Oh you know I want to be a great skateboarder, blah blah blah. It was just like, first sip of alcohol, Oh man that tastes nasty, why are you guys drinking? I never went back to that. And you know, doing drugs, that definitely had something to do with skateboarding. You know, I want to be the best skateboarder I can be and I only see drugs getting in the way of that.
(Andy Macdonald) Specifically, Im a street skater. A lot of guys skate stairs and hand rails, and thats what they do, thats what theyre known for. Im known for riding ramps. You know, like the stuff you see in the X-Games, the Half Pipe, stuff like that. But I also skate stairs and hand rails, and I also skate backyard pools for instance, and I also skate slolom, Ill skate whatever you put in front of me - Ill have fun skating.
If I skate, like I recently got off tour, you know were doing this Huck Jam tour, and its like an arena tour, irs all vert skating, its all on ramps. Its great fun and its awesome, but by the time I get done with that tour Im like, Oh, I want to go skate street, I want to go skate a backyard pool or something, you know? Of course a lot of guys just tend to stay within their realm, but to answer your questions, like, as far as I need to drink a dozen raw eggs every morning when I wake up, and do 20 pushups and situps, I dont do any of that stuff.
(Cave) That makes sense.
(Andy Macdonald) I will skate all day long, you know? 6 or 8 hours a day sometimes, you know? Ill skate for 6 or 8 hours sometimes. Thats a lot. Even for pro skaters, 2 hours, if that, if they skate every day.
(Cave) Thats nuts. Thats a lot!
(Andy Macdonald) Yeah, it is, definitely.
(Cave) So what kind of advice would you give to a younger or newer skater?
Interview continues on page 2...