It’s all about lifestyle, right? About shoving it to the man, smashing down the walls between our cubicles, tearing off the working man’s noose and doing a frenzy of ass circle work on the man’s desk. Hence Stab.
A micro-kingdom where we rule and where the profits tip into our own hungry buckets. It’s a sweet life. Online all day in chat rooms talking to middle-aged men masquerading as promiscuous teens, browsing luxury car catalogues and client lunches covered by an American Express charge card whose limit is, effectively, endless. Espresso martini with a duckling foetus chaser, anyone?
Lately, however, we’ve been consumed by a splendid greed. Like, if six magazines a year makes us X, then seven will make us X plus, like, more.
Suddenly, 80k for a new ride don’t seem so hard to pull off. Suddenly, that trip to LA to fuck and inhale our septums through our brains don’t seem so far away. We just gotta make more mags. But if we can’t meet deadline on six, how we gonna do seven? This is where Ron Blakey comes in. Hired gun. Loose cannon. A hairy teddy bear with fire in his pen and a forest of delightful ideas. Ron is the editor of this kinda spesh big ish. And this is what he’s got for you fruitballs. – Derek Rielly
Thanks, Derek, you’re beautiful. No, seriously, you’re an asshole. Talk about lifestyle. For whom? I took this gig as guest editor to hang with my boys for a month in between making the best magazine in Stab’s short history. A week into my tenure as guest editor, however, and he’s off to Bali. Apparently he has to be there to drive the ski for the second round of Insight’s new ad campaign. Ha! The guy has the wave sense of a cat and the work ethic of a Jamaican. Ah well, it’s cool, I think, Wheels, the other skipper here at Stab will be around to help out. Two days later, he’s on the footpath hailing a cab to the airport. “It’s a business trip to LA,” he lies, authentic Burberry duffel bag swollen with $600 Marc Jacobs spray jackets, sheer tees and ball-grabbing jeans. “When will you back?” I yell pathetically from the office window.
“Hmmm… maybe a week… maybe longer. Good luck with the mag. Ciao!”
So there I am, desperately alone in the Stab office with 200 pages to fill, when I receive the crowning glory via text from Wheels. Oh yeah, forgot to tell you, the designer is away for two weeks. Later. After moping about the office for a day or two, okay maybe a week, I’m filled with a tremendously original theme for the issue. How about we make it a Photo Issue! Yeah! What better way to fill a large number of pages with minimal effort? On my journey through the files I also discover some unseen images from Stab’s world first’s. ie. the Sunway Lagoon sessions and Taj’s acid drop from the chopper. One thing Wheels and Dek do exceptionally well, apart from abandon friends and abscond from responsibility, is create real exclusives. So pardon me for the retrospective piece, but there was some behind-the-scenes politics that went down while bringing those ideas to existence and those stories had to be shared. So yeah, one day, after wandering around the office for a couple of weeks hitting the Get Mail button on Entourage occasionally, Derek strolls in, black as a Hutu warrior and ready for work. Then Wheels turns up two days later, spine a
permanent curve thanks to his relentless rutting of drugged strippers looking to make change. Thank God Wheels found time in his hectic schedule of fornication to do a story on surfing’s Golf Geeks, but you’ll have to flip the mag upside down to catch it. We also called in ace subcontractor Vaughan Dead and gave him the assignment of talking to his mate Oz Wright about a recent adventure to Peru. The conversation between them brought tears to my eyes. Or was that the joy of being reunited with my two dear friends? You do the irony. – Ronnie Blakey