SEMA 2006: Pics of Day 3. VIP, Formula D, Tyson B, and DRIFTING.
I have soooooo many business cards from people I met at SEMA, and I wanted to try to contact them before they forgot who I was, or I forgot who they were. Remember, you may meet alot of new contacts at tradeshows, but if you don't follow up with them, your new contacts are worthless! Ya know!
It's like getting a hot chick's phone number, and then not calling. (haha but actually I always forget to call chicks cause I'm busy, my bad.) Sooner or later she will forget who you are if you don't call after a few days. Just don't call right when you get home, the same day after meeting her! If you don't get it, go to Blockbuster and rent SWINGERS you rookie!
First thing we did was go to the VIP press conference, where Falken explained to the automotive media what they were doing with all these gangster VIP themed black vehicles at SEMA. They had people from Falken, Junction Produce, AME Wheels, Air Runner, Tein, and some other peeps over there making announcements.
Even Taketomi, the President of Junction Produce (Osaka Japan) was there addressing the crowd in Japanese, with help from his new translator/overseas sales guy Fujioka. (The guys on the left side)
But what I thought was kind of funny... Taketomi was talking for like 3-4 minutes in Japanese, explaining his philosophy on VIP tuning... and when it was time for Fujioka to translate for him, Fujioka would only say like one short sentence in English. We were like WTF???
It was pretty much like "lost in translation!" Me and Joyce Lex were laughing about it. The next time Junction Produce does a press conference, it would probably make more sense for Taketomi to just prepare some notes for Fujioka in advance, so homeboy could just read the whole thing in English!
Then while Fujioka presents to the crowd in English, Taketomi could nod his head in approval, or smile and wave to the crowd. Or if he wanted to, he could even just say little things like "Ne!" or "Hai!" or "So desu ne! or even "Word up!" if he REALLY wanted to be vocal about shit.
Cause since there were only like 3 or 4 people in the crowd who understood what Taketomi was saying in Japanese anyway, having him talk was just a formality.
But nobody asked me for my opinion, so never mind. Not like they asked me for consulting or anything.
And what I thought was pretty dope about the press conference, was everyone was all suited up to match the VIP look, and my boy Dominic Chen from AME Wheels comes in rocking some brand new black & white Converse Chuck Taylors. LOL! Now that's gangster for real! While everyone else brought out their Kenneth Coles and Ferragamos, this cat was straight rockin Chucks. hahaha fuckin Dom! They were clean though, so I'm not mad at ya... it was just funny cause his shoes stood out so much while they were up on stage.
Tarzan Yamada with my boys from Miami, Jose (bald guy) and Juan. Tarzan was busy filming a Japanese TV show, but he stopped to take this pic with them. Tarzan loves the camera.
Next stop, Formula D Press Conference. I gotta say, I'm proud of the guys at Formula D. They're really taking the series to the next step and doing some big things. Big ups Jim and Ryan. It is difficult blazing new trails, and being the FIRST. Oh man I know all about that.
Anyway, here's Jim Liaw, co-founder of Formula Drift. DRIFTING changed his life.
Hallalujah praise the Lord! My boy Avon Bellamy is finally linked up on Cingular. Now the revolution can begin! And yeah, DRIFTING changed his life too.
In case you guys don't know what it is Avon Bellamy does, he is a partner in a company called Real Wheelz (I know, the Z in the name kills me), which makes die cast toys and trading cards. Here are the prototype sample toys of Calvin Wan's personal FD3S RX7. And his trading card!
This is Peter. He is the guy who made it all happen. Almost 2 years ago, he flew to Los Angeles to meet with me, and we talked about the commercial viability of a book based on DRIFTING. I presented him with the proposal and outline, and he pushed it through on his end.
Fast forward to November 2006, what started off just as a dream on my part is now a reality... and my book on DRIFTING is in every single major bookstore in the USA and Canada, and not to mention- a huge success. See? Told you so. To date, we've sold our whole year's supply of books in less than 3 months. And my book on the subject of DRIFTING has been getting tons of international press in print magazines, websites, and even television.
So yeah, DRIFTING really did change my life. And Peter made it all happen. Thank you Peter.
Then right as me, Jose, Scott, and Juan began walking towards the drifting demo outside...
Tyson Beckford walks up with his entourage and he told me he thought my book was dope, and he wanted me to autograph it for him. Wow, I was pretty surprised by that! Crazy. Big ups to Juan and Scott for the pics.
So while I was busy signing Tyson's book, he was telling me about this new project he's working on, and he was asking me if I wanted to do anything with it, or "guest appear" on the show or something... again, pretty crazy.
Uhmmm, even though it looks like our fingers are touching in this photo, they're NOT. There's a good 3-4 inches of space in between them, even though you can't see it in the photo. Ok just wanted to clear that up.
As we were walking out to the drifting demo, I saw this car. I'm not really sure what kind of Mopar this is, but it looks dope!
Later that evening at the drifting demo, my boy Robbie Nishida saw me and started taking off his suit... and I was like "dude how come you start undressing right away when you see me?! People will think you're gay or something!" but haha, he was just trying to show me that he was rockin his favorite Cipher Garage shirt, the infamous SSR Mark-III design.
This is Alex Pfeiffer's girlfriend Crystal. (the one with the longer hair) The other person in the pic is Rob Fleming from Enjuku Racing in Florida somewhere.
Awww it's Hiromi san!!! Hiromi Kajikuma lives the 86 life. She is the top female driver in Formula D competition, and she drives an AE86!!! Hell yeah. She is so sweet! And a hell of a driver! Actually, before she came to the USA to drive for Team Kaaz, I met Hiromi-san at one of the last "BM-Hai" events (Battle Magazine's Battle of Drift) at Tsukuba Raceway in Ibaragi Japan. It was so cool that she remembered me when she came to the USA! Hiromi-san is a good friend of Robbie and the Hey Man crew. I guess, most people who drive hachirokus get along. Well no shit, the hachiroku is a dope ass car, so we all have common interests. It SHOULD bring people together.