In the current issue of Dirt Rag (on sale now) you’ll find a ground-breaking interview with Reverend Bob Seals of CoolTool, Kleen Kanteen and Retrotec fame. This multi-faceted artist, activist, frame builder, race promoter and team owner, if not agitator, ran his whole operation out of his ranch just outside of Chico, California.
Seals was first interviewed in Dirt Rag #38 in July 1994 by Fernando Avallone and we strongly suggest you find and read that original interview, there’s too much there to miss. We also suggest you read the new interview by the same author in Issue #178 if you haven’t yet. Over the next few weeks we’ll be posting select outtakes that didn’t make it to print. Most of these unimaginable stories are being told for the first time right here.
Bob & Bob
You know, sometimes I watch the Tour de France or something like that on TV, and I see Bob Roll there, and I remember we ended up in a magazine together for an article called the Craziest Guys in Mountain Biking. It was me, Bob Roll dressed as a woman, and two or three others. Now I am looking at him, as a big race commentator, all corporate, it makes me laugh. I still have the article, if I was into blackmailing.
Back then, (coming from road racing in Europe to MTB) Bob was caught between the big corporate teams, but he liked us, so he would come by all the time at the races or expos, Interbike, and always say the same thing, “I really dig what you guys do, and what you bring to the sport. I want you guys to know that you’re one of my favorite companies in the industry.” This was pretty much it, we never really hang out, but we appreciated each other, then we ended up together in that magazine. They did an interview with me and I did not know they were going around and doing interviews with other people at the same time.
The Lunatic Stew
One season, at the end of a summer of shitting and peeing on the road and before we had a toilet, we had this big cooking pot. We would put garbage in there, we would cook pasta in there, and also make what we called Lunatic Stew: we’d go into a liquor store and everybody would get a different kind of liquor and some kind of fruit juice, say a couple gallons of pineapple juice, and—I’m talking about the 5 gallon stainless steel pot we shit in, ok? We mixed it right there—I have pictures of people shitting on it with a trash bag over it, and us later mixing Lunatic Stew.
It was against the rules to wash the pot, and another thing in the rules was that each person picked some liquor up but could not talk to the others about what it was, so on any given day it could be a bag of ice and four or five gallons of vodka, or rum, or gin, or whatever it was, poured in the pot. We drank the stew, got crazy, and the next day it was a toilet again.
Then, this one guy—in one of the vans we had a funnel—we got bored going to some race late in the season, and this guy, his deal was he would eat anything, out of the drains, off the floor of restaurants, bubble gum off the sidewalk, he would peel it off on the spot and ask how much for this one? We would say, “Oh, like 12 bucks,” and he would eat it. Hmm, that was Bubblelicious, like Juicy Fruit.
So on that trip we teased him, “How much for you to eat out of this funnel that we peed in, shitted in, barfed in, coughed with lung infections in all summer?” He says, “Oh, I don’t know?” Somebody says, “I’ll give you 25 bucks” or something, I forget now. He wanted more and turned it into a small bidding war and I won for about 45 dollars.
Now, I go, “Ok, here are the rules: you have to drink a whole beer, but before we are going to duck tape [the funnel] to your face, you will have to breathe through it for 10 minutes then chuck the beer in less than one minute.”So we did, we duck taped the funnel to his head—this is no-bullshit—and he did it. He earned it. That is the shit you see in crazy movies, all staged, we did it for real. He also took apart a whole CoolTool with his feet, and put it back together in less than 5 or 10 minutes, I gave him a hundred bucks or so and he did it at a trade show.
Watch for more outtakes coming soon, and in the meantime, grab a copy of Issue #178 to read our extended interview.