Am Scramble Interview: Noah Mahieu

Noah Mahieu managed to do the impossible recently—visit the exceedingly over-shredded streets of LA and come away with a fresh and lively video part. As part of the Scramble’s French (speaking) Connection, he and Max were always on the road less traveled, eschewing the hubbas and ledges we stopped at for the harder-to-see lines and drops of the modern creative street artist. Having recently jumped from Welcome to Limosine, expect shit to get even weirder for the man from Biarritz. —Rye Beres

Noah fit right in and lent his timeless style to the Scramble. Get another viewing to add a little sauce your next session

What up, Noah? How old are you and where are you from?
I’m 19. I am from Normandy but I live in Biarritz now.

That’s a surf town, right?
Yeah, I don’t surf but everyone surfs there.

Why don’t you surf?
It’s not that I hate it, but surfers are so awkward and annoying all the time. I have surfed a few times, but it’s just not my thing.

Your dad is a surfer, correct?
Yeah, he surfs a lot but not as much as he used to. But yeah, he’s a surfer.

Noah Mahieu DSC 0100 BURNETT DZ copyNoah gets tubed on an under-utilized double-set rock wall

Does your dad skate at all?
Yeah, he skates more than me sometimes. He does lunch-break sessions almost every day.

Damn, Pops is an OG Had you ever been to Boston before the Am Scramble? What did you think of it?
No, that was my first time on the East Coast. I didn’t know what to expect when you guys told me we were going there. I think it was a cool city. I just got back from New York like a month ago and it was kind of the same vibe but way smaller.

You knew Max before the trip, right?
No, I didn’t know him before. Everyone was surprised because we were always talking together, but I met him on the trip. He spoke French so it was easier for me.

DSC 8607The new-friend cheat code: skateboarding and the road

That’s nice.
When you go on a trip and have to speak English for a long period, it just gets me tired. Then, at night, I can speak French with him. It’s nice.

I guess then you guys can speak in code and talk shit on us.
Exactly. I remember someone saying they thought that when we were speaking French we were talking shit on everyone. Is it true? Do y’all think that?

Well, y’all would be looking at people and talking and laughing, so it’s like, Damn, they must be saying something about us!
Sometimes, but not all the time. We are not always talking shit, but most of the time, probably, yes. It’s just a French thing—we are always ironic when we do jokes and stuff.

Yeah. I think Vitória was the only other person who couldn’t speak English well. Could y’all understand what she was saying in Portuguese?
Me? Dude, what you just said was so American. It is a way different language. I can’t understand anything when she speaks.

Obviously, I know that. But last year Jhancarlos was able to understand some of Daiki’s Japanese and those are two totally different languages.
Nah, man, that’s too weird. I didn’t understand anything. It’s not possible.

Did you try and teach French to anyone on the trip?
Burnett actually knew some French words. I would ask people if they knew any French words and they’d all say the same thing: “Oui, Oui.” We were teaching Dylan a little bit of French.

Noah Mahieu DSC 3965 BURNETT DZ copyKilling Rye on a crooks to manual line

And now Dylan is your BFF.
Yeah, we are good friends now. He’s a super chill dude. Me, him and Max all had the same humor so that made for some super good times. I had met him a couple of times before the trip and in my head thought he was more of a serious guy who took skating serious. But little did I know he pranked us, ‘cause he’s actually a jokester.

What did you think about the vibe of the trip?
It was good. I feel like no one knew each other before the trip, except maybe the Australian guys. Everyone got along and the whole trip was just mellow vibes.

Did you feel any pressure with skating on the trip?
Nah, it was like normal sessions. I didn’t feel any pressure going into it. I went into it like any other trip I’d go on. When you put your head into that mind state, that’s when you start to skate bad.

Noah Mahieu Back Tail 750Back tail 270 shove out, no pressure

What do you think was one of the gnarliest things you saw on the trip?
Either Max’s rail or when Vitória fell. That was pretty scary, dude. I didn’t see how she fell ’cause me and Max were around the corner with the White Claws, but when we looked over she was face flat on the ground and wasn’t moving at all. It was scary. She kept repeating the same things.

Was that some of your first times night skating, with lights and all that good stuff?
Yeah, I had never done that. But did I really skate during the night?

Noah Mahieu DSC 2149 BURNETT DZ copyThe agony of Eggs

No, not at all.
It was gonna be my first time skating at night, but it was too disturbing. I couldn’t even see my board.

Max said he didn’t want any night clips, but I feel like he only skated at night.
He did that slappy 50-50 at night which was the scariest thing you could do—after a few White Claws, too. I knew he was gonna do it. He was all down to go to the spot since he had been drinking those Claws.

Max’s approach to seeing a skate spot is pretty out there.
He’s just lazy. He doesn’t want to ollie into anything so he just builds things so he can ride onto them instead of having to pop his board. He doesn’t really put pressure on himself when he skates. It’s such a sick approach.

Noah Mahieu DSC 0100 BURNETT DZ copyIt takes a lot of work to make it look that easy

I loved how diverse the crew was this year.
It was cool because we’d be driving to spots and they’d be standard spots like rails and stuff for everyone, but once we got to those spots Max and I would skate around and find some funny stuff.

Most of your spots needed to be fixed by Dan Stolling, though. He’s so buff, right?
Oh yeah, he was the solution to the problem. I don’t know if he’s the strongest guy ever, but he just does everything. Anything we’d need to be fixed or built, he was the guy. You guys just need him on the trip. You couldn’t do a trip without him.

The last night of the trip got kinda wild while we were skating around MIT. Care to elaborate on your guys’ antics?
Basically, Max and I were pretty drunk. Dylan was with us, too, but he doesn’t drink. You guys were checking spots still and I hate skating at night, so we were just walking around and then we decided to chill by the water where some boats were docked. We were like, Damn, should we hop over this fence and go on some boats? Max decided to go first. We saw a big rich-guy boat so we decided to hop inside. Next thing you know we just hear, “Yo, what the fuck are you guys doing in here?” We got so scared and started running and then my foot slipped and I fell into the water—fully dressed. I was panicking, swimming with my phone and all of my shit. I was just scared the guy was going to shoot me for some reason. By the time I got out of the water the guy grabbed me by the neck and then someone pushed him and we started to run away. When we met back up with you guys I feel like everyone was mad at us.

I don’t think anyone was mad. I’m bummed I didn’t stick with y’all and film it.
Bro, that would’ve been the craziest clip ever. The guy was wearing tights, too, like in the movies. Has anything like that ever happened on the Am Scramble?

Uh, nah, dude. But hey, there’s a first for everything.
Yeah, I’m pretty stoked.

Noah Mahieu DSC 5119 BURNETT DZ copy
While we were looking at something boring, Mahieu found a cheeky tail-drop grind. We're gonna see big things from Noah, as long as he stays on dry land
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