Alex Schlopy set a goal for himself going into the 2014 Olympic Games: In his words it was “make the Olympics or I’d rather be dead.” Unfortunately, Alex missed making the US Olympic Team by the slimmest of margins and decided to seek out crack and heroin to dull his pain and follow through on the ‘or I’d rather part’. A few suicide attempts and an arrest later, Alex went to treatment and is currently getting back into the sport he loves. He’s young and still has a chance to regain all that he thought he threw away. Hear his whole story on the podcast
Alex Schlopy Show Notes
1:30: Skiing for the first time in a long time
2:45: Coming from a famous family and family growing up
7:00: Getting into skiing and other sports in his life
10:10: Taking gymnastics to snow and working with Mike Hanley
13:45: Full of energy and toilet papering and did he get in trouble?
16:32: Winning the VT Open, getting sponsors and money
20:00: Filming with TGR and getting a RED camera
23:00: Getting into a bad car crash and the concussion
27:30: Drinking and the perception of him
30:00: Why does he hate himself?
33:00: When does he move out of the house and what is 2011 like for him?
34:59: First X-Games, getting into big air, winning and the JOI event
37:00: Getting real money in 2011, almost getting arrested and other incidents
46:30: How does he spend his money and partying/skiing
49:30: The goal that was the worst idea of his life
51:05: Olympic qualifying and Joss
56:15: Sponsors at this point and Ruroc Helmets
59:52: The end of skiing and the start of drugs
1:08:16: Suicide attempts
1:13:00: He gets arrested and what does his family think about him at this time?
1:15:00: How does recovery happen?
1:19:00: Concussions and the impact they’ve had on him
1:23:00: What’s next?
Joss Christensen was on the bubble to make the US Olympic Team in 2014 when he lost his dad. When he was selected to the US Team with the discretionary spot, skiers all over the internet were outraged and Joss was put down, harassed, bullied, and even asked to give up his Olympic spot for someone else. While this hurt Joss’s pride, it also gave him something to prove…And he did by becoming the first ever Ski Slopestyle Olympic Gold Medalist. Fast forward 4 years and Joss is on the bubble to make the team again. He’s coming off a horrific knee injury and has only been on snow for a month. Will he qualify? That and a deep dive into his while career on the podcast.
Joss Christensen Show Notes:
2:00: The knee injury, the complications, and the rehab
15:50: Born into a family of ski bums and growing up skiing in Park City
24:00: The enigma of Kerry Miller and young skiers today
30:00: Making a name for himself in 2011
34:29: Getting product from Line, trying to work his way into 4bi9 and being a tall skier
38:44: Olympics vs X-Games. What is the discretionary spot?
42:11: Making the team and being hated on online
45:12: The experience of Sochi, that time Joss thought he was kicked off the team and learning triples
54:00: Winning the Gold Medal
59:11: Losing his dad before the Olympics
100:04: The media tour and becoming a boy band.
107:40: Getting rabies in Bosnia
1:12:15: Losing his ski sponsor after winning a Gold Medal
1:16:10: String of injuries, signs with K2 and what will it take to get to the Olympics?
Jeff Ament is known for being the bassist for Pearl Jam but his story goes much deeper than that. He doesn’t do many interviews, and none go this deep. From working on a farm in small town Montana, to turning down football scholarships as an all-state quarterback, to music, to charity, the dude has done a lot in his life and he’s remained as humble as they get. Hear it all on the podcast.
Jeff Ament Show Notes
1:35: What has Jeff been up to lately?
3:25: Born and raised in small town Montana in a family of 5 and developing a strong work ethic by working on the farm and how that could have rubbed people the wrong way at times
9:25: Big Sandy High School, skateboarding, team sports and turning down football scholarships.
15:45: What did he see growing up near Indian Reservations that impacts him today, his dad wanting him to become a priest and understanding the poor kid
22:30: Art, getting into guitar, music in the 70’s and then Jeff going on a tangent that includes Seattle, Mark Arm, and opening for big bands for the first time.
29:18: Punk rock music during college in Missoula, putting school on the backburner and what his parents thought of moving to Seattle with Sergio.
34:46: What are the shitty jobs that he had when he moved to Seattle? Washing dishes and working his way up in the restaurant game
37:30: Playing a distorted bass, jumping really high and what he looked like at the time.
40:46: Green River, being an unofficial investor of Sub Pop, and being a part of the Seattle “scene”
43:04: The end of Green River, how long is he out of a band and the start of being in bands that weren’t his best friends….Mother Love Bone and getting a demo deal in a month.
47:52: Is he still poor when Mother Love Bone is signed?
50:00: Andrew Wood dies and Jeff needs a backup plan now that he thinks his shot could be over.
53:00: Music becoming fun again and playing with Stone Gossard again
54:00: Pearl Jam comes together quickly with the best musicians and Dave Kruzen
56:40: Singles movie
60:00: He has everything and nothing. Dealing with being famous
63:00: Money and things he’s splurged on
67:00: Fan clubs and building an audience
70:00: Ames Bros
73:00: When things go wrong at shows you do not cancel
80:00: Getting into skiing and snowboarding with Doug Coombs