‘Sup, Julien… So it is early in the morning and you are chilling in Switzerland with your girlfriend. The WRS Uploaded voting is about to end in a few hours. You are still ahead of Aragon in the voting. Right now it is 51.9% to 48.1%, with you ahead by a couple hundred votes. What is going through your head right now? How do you feel about it?
First, I have to say that my English is not as perfect as my French, but I will do my best to answer your questions and use the best possible words to express what I feel.
Actually I’m chilling alone, because my girlfriend is still sleeping. I always fall asleep late at night, but especially these days with the WRS thing happening. Until now it has been so close up to the last minute for both of the battles I had, so I’m getting more and more excited, and keep talking with friends on the internet and getting people juiced to vote and share the link so that I can make it to the Fan Voting Finals! I’m really amazed about the amount of support from all around the world it; it’s a great thing to see, and it points to the fact that rollerblading is still so important for each of us.
A lot of American rollerbladers have been very vocal about the results of the round between you and David Sizemore. How do you feel about it?
I totally understand why people who voted Sizemore were really disapointed about it, but it’s a game (fan vote), and it just meant that more people voted for me — nothing else. So what I don’t understand is, why so much hate? I feel like a lot of American people will hate and talk shit on you if you have not exactly the same point of view of skating as them, and if you don’t skate like what would be the perfect skating to them (I don’t know if you understand that but it’s kind of hard with the English vocabulary I’ve got).
It’s just skating’s differences, nothing more, so tell me: How you can judge a whole person on these criteria? It just makes no sense.
I’m the first to know that Sizemore is gonna win the judge’s thing for sure; there is no doubt. It was, for me, the most professionnal edit with variety, technicality, and hammers — just a quality edit. But it’s just rollerblading and all sports/communities there are a lot of ways to see and practice the thing you do, so I agree that the way you skate can show something about your real personnality, but I can’t understand someone who can form a rude judgment on someone from just having seen him skating a couple of times.
Believe me, I’m the first person to make fun of everything — even myself — but I respect every kind of skating and every point of view, so there is no disrespect. But sometimes with people from the US (in general), it looks like real hate and real feelings about the people, no joke at all, and that’s a pity.
I feel like a lot of American rollerbladers haven’t liked you since you came here and won Bitter Cold Showdown. Do you think you have gotten an undeserved bad reputation from Americans?
I don’t think, I KNOW — a lot of people in the US don’t like me. Even some pros that I had so much respect for, loving to watch them skate on video since I begin skating. But I guess they just have this opinion of me ’cause of my way of skating and competing (and also for the opinions they have about the French skaters in general), so what can I say? I’m not gonna complain or even care about what those kind of people. I think that people who know me a bit better than which tricks I do often and on what obstacles I choose to skate, or what kind of clothes I like to wear, etc… those people know who I really am and it suits me perfectly. The other guys can try to have discussion with me a bit and know me a bit better, or they can keep the limited and basic judgment they already made; it’s okay. I’ve been to the USA a couple of times and noboy disrespected me to my face. I even felt that most of the people over there were welcoming and smiling, so everything it’s okay.
Your WRS edit has you skating a lot more street than any of your other edits I’ve seen. Have you always skated street a lot or have you made a conscious decision to do it more and get better at it?
I began with park skating and did it for something like 8 or 9 years without skating a handrail, or ledge, or anything in the street. I discovered skating with skateparks. Then I started street skating when my regular park closed. Since then I’ve almost only skated street and the small skateparks around my area. I never made a decision to skate more street, it just came like that. I can’t complain about it, ’cause today I couldn’t say which I prefer to skate.
Tell me about that clip in your edit where you run into the woman at the end. Where is that, and did people freak out when that happened?
Ha ha, that was already one of the best and weirdest sessions. This clip is in the subway and it’s a central station in Paris, and it was when everybody was going back home after work or school. Rush hour. But I kind of had no choice, ’cause it was the last day to finish the section. So one of my friends was upstairs and you can see in the video that he pushed something to make it impossible for people to pass on that one side of the stairs, and for the landing I had two more friends at the entrance, standing hand-in-hand to secure a landing area. But it was still impossible ’cause of the crowds, but luckily some kids who were passing made a little human chain which let me get an acceptable landing. Even with all that I ran into a woman, but she was okay. I just stopped on one of her feet. It hurt her a bit but she just grumbled one or two words and was gone. People did not freak out at all, they were so juiced when I fell that when I landed, everyone had so much fun that even cops stopped to look — then they kept going! This is actually weird cause normally it’s forbidenn to just wear skates in the subway.