French Canadian slang can be heavy to understand for some people, but French Canadian slang from Rosemont/Saint-Michel is beyond heavy. Joey Larock is a professional skateboarder hailing from the lands of Rosemont/Saint-Michel, where he pretty much invented a full dictionary of words that only a few chosen ones can understand. If you think your level of French slang understanding is great, well, it isn’t compared to Joey. And if you think your pop on a skateboard is great, It isn’t either!
This interview with Joey Larock first ran into our Late Summer 2018 Issue.
Words by Phil Lajeunesse
Photos by Nathan Éthier-Myette and Ryan Lebel
Sup Joey, What’s good?
Sup man. Not much. Kinda waiting at home for the heat to drop a little. Heat wave of pain.
Where is your home?
I live with my mom now, straight between Rosemont and Saint-Michel.
Are you more Saint-Michel or Rosemont
I would say both.
Is it the neighborhood where the infamous Bucci Gang was born?
Kinda, yeah. Bucci gang is worldwide though. I wouldn’t even say it’s a gang. It’s way more than that. The term got invented long ago after my good friend’s name, Danny Bucci. At first we were saying it because it sounded cool and we were just a gang of homies kicking it, but it became this thing, more than just a squad. It’s a mentality, regrouping all the young, talented and motivated artists, athletes, brains, musicians, etc. If you got that special love for something sick, you’re Bucci.
You mean anyone can be Bucci?
Actually, no. If you’re my friend or a friend of my friends, then Bucci. If we worship you, Bucci. Shit, some people are Bucci from birth and don’t even know it.
What About Yebo? What does that mean?
It’s another Rosemont thing. Basically, YEBO is a shitty expression that turned great. We used to think it was so wack. It’s a slang word ghetto kids at my old high school used to say all the time. They would say that to intimidate people, and it sounded so shit. The ghetto kids respected us because we skated, but they were saying it to other people in a negative way. After I finished school, I didn’t hear the slang for a while and somehow it came back, but in a good way. Back in the days, YEBO was an insult, now it turned into a simpler way to say “what’s up”.
I know exactly what you’re talking about. I remember hearing the ghetto boys at my school and thinking “I will never say the word “Chill”, it sounds so wack”, but fast forward a couple years later, Chill represents 75% of my vocabulary.
Haha. Exactly what happened with YEBO.
Let’s talk business. You are officially pro for Studio Skateboards now. How does that feel?
Feels great man. It’s an honor for me to represent for a sick brand like Studio. Shout out to my man Jai (Ball), I love you dawg!
I heard you denied turning pro once?
Yeah. I’m happy I did it though. I wasn’t ready at all back when I first got asked. Now I feel like the timing is just right.
Anything changed in your life since you’re pro?
Not really. I mean, I got my name on a board and shit. That’s cool. It motivates me to go harder you know. I have to work extra hard to keep the level on point. It’s great. Plus, now when people who don’t know skating ask me what I do and they’re like “ ohhh, you’re a “pro skater”, I can say “Yes I am” in all honesty!
Do you get hooked up with royalties?
Yeah. Studio’s been hooking it up.
It’s dope. I have nothing but respect and love for the brand, the team and all that’s behind it.
What’s up with your first graphic? Did you get to choose it?
Got two graphics out and Jay chose them. I love them though. One is white with some kind of funny religious image where I’m pictured as the baby Jesus receiving the crown. (I’m not religious, but I like it). The other one shows a colorful picture of a half-naked black lady. This one represents me well.
Stoked to hear you still have a thing for black chicks?
Of course I do! The love is forever! That being said, I love all nationalities and cultures. I just have a thing for women in general I guess. The spicier the better!
I remember you telling me your love for international chicks is part of the Larock way. Do you still live by that moto?
I try to keep all things Larock Way. It’s more of a joke than anything, but it’s there to remind me to never stop trying to come up in this world. Landing a good trick, eating bomb food, getting money, taking care of business, meeting tasteful women… Basically doing all the things you need to do, and doing them as good as you can. That’s the Larock Way. I’m still on the program, yeah.
What does the Larock Way has in store for you in the future?
Trying to skate as much as I can and film video parts for my sponsors. I’m planning on going on more trips over the next year too. I also plan on hanging out with my friends… Hey, can I say something?
Of course, go on.
I want to take this opportunity to give a major shout out and pay homage to Dillon Ojo. I want to send positive energy and thoughts to his family, his girl, his close friends and everybody else who got to spend time with him. You are the greatest and you will never be forgotten. This tragic event reminded me about how much I love my friends, how important they are to me and how we got to have each other’s back more than ever.
Rest In Peace Dillon… From now on, we should tell our friends we love them all the time!
True. I LOVE MY FRIENDS!