When Whalebone Mag asked me who I would most like to interview, I thought of all my mentors and homies that have helped pave the way for me and all my endeavors. And then I flipped the script and thought this would be a great opportunity to introduce two of my favorite up-and-coming shredders, the Gnarmads: Matt and Bogdan from New York City. With a six-pack in hand, and as their team manager and life coach, I sat down with them on a rooftop on the LES to crack a few and find out what’s cooking.
Cheers guys [beers tap]. So for the uninformed, what’s a Gnarmad?
We’ve been coming up with different definitions for the past five years since the term originated. It came from being modern day nomads that live the GNAR lifestyle. So, Gnarmad (noun)—a gnarly nomad who is constantly pushing themselves outside of the comfort zone, satisfied with what’s in front but still constantly moving ahead. How does that sound? People have also shared their own interpretations—email us with what a Gnarmad means to you.
@sweepertheleg getting a fatherly push during the #gnarmads @powskateboards #halloweencontest and conquering more than just the channel gap. Skateboarding isn’t a sport- there is no scoreboard or winner. The only rival in skateboarding is yourself, and everyone experiences the same battle & struggle of self improvement. We all recognize these victories in others with genuine stoke & respect, whether you’re young or older, grom or pro. THIS IS SKATEBOARDING.. oh and don’t forget to have fun #thankyouskateboarding
How does one become a Gnarmad, and are you guys recruiting?
If you do your own thing, not worrying about others’ opinions, then you already are one. It’s about being truly passionate about something, sharing and connecting with others. A big part of being a Gnarmad isn’t just shredding through life, but also giving back to the next generations and continuing to inspire and be inspired by the communities that raised us.
There have been Gnarmads since way before we were even born, and they’ll be around forever more. It’s more of a concept, something that encapsulates our lifestyle but doesn’t confine it—it’s who we are. It’s who you are, without needing to be “recruited.” The “gnarmy” is growing globally every day, though we’ve built it to be a tight team. If you think you have something to contribute, give us a shout!
You both skate and snowboard, but what about surfing?
Skateboarding is what led us to every other board sport. It’s our roots, but we are not limited by them. Matt loves to surf, but Bogdan, well, let’s just say he hasn’t found his groove out there yet. He gets too angry too fast, and the water feels it and constantly fights back. He’ll get it eventually. Gnarmads aren’t limited to one sport or hobby either—there is much overlap between all the respective communities and often leads to learning and experiencing much more.
Matt, I need to ask you this… do you think you were destined to be a Gnarmad with the last name Kruz?
Ha! I was definitely born into this world a Gnarmad despite my last name (and it’s actually Kruszelnicki, but nobody gave a shit to pronounce it correctly since elementary school and ‘Kruz’ just became and stuck over the years).
What’s the next big adventure?
We’ve got a few small trips coming up here and there. Going down to visit our homies in Richmond, VA and shred the famous Lost Bowl. Definitely going up to Burlington, VT for the annual A-Dog day. The scene out there is amazing, nothing but good vibes from those dudes! Might be going up to Maine to check out some insane five-mile snake run through the forest, and are planning a return trip to Cuba to see the progress since the last couple visits. Those are just some to name a few. We’ve also got a few bigger projects we are working on, but that’ll be a surprise further down the road.
Aside from the amazing SHUT Skateboard collab, what other projects do you guys have in the works?
The SHUT collab has been a dream come true. We both grew up skating in New York, admiring what those guys did—pioneering and laying the foundation of NY skating. Besides that, we’re putting together some summer events and contests, as well as the return of Skate Night at Leftfield Bar in the fall. We are also working with a few local and national brands on new and practical products. Stay tuned for upcoming collabs!
Keep up with the Gnarmads + their upcoming adventures via the Gnarmads Instagram.