Although it is rather rare to catch sight of Stephane Mosselmans, it is usually something you will remember for a while afterwards. Graced with flawless tricks and perfect execution, along with some of the best TTS in the game, the man they call Mos has successfully made his way through all of Shaolin’s 36 chambers.
One of Europe’s finest, and long time member of the Xsjado team, Belgium’s pride has recently ventured onto other projects, along with fellow blading friend Bruno Willemarck & girlfriend Grazyna Wratny. In addition to his day job, Stephane has been locking people up for his new project, entitled Let Me Out.
If all this has kept him busy enough to put the blades away a little, it didn’t take Stephane more than just a few days in Barcelona to gather the pictures you are about to see though. Just two weeks after this little Spanish vacation, quite the perfect time to catch up with Mos and see how things are going for him nowadays: enjoy the read!
Hey there Mos, thanks for doing this with us! Where are you right now, and what were you up to before doing this interview?
I am in Brussels right now, and just before I wrote this I was locking people up for a teambuilding activity. With my bro Bongo (Bruno Willemarck) and my girlfriend Grazyna Wratny, we built and opened an escape game.
Really? Sounds crazy, where did the idea come from? And what did it take to open it, and how did you guys manage to make it a reality?
Grazyna came up with the idea of open one in BXL. She played one in Poland, and wanted to do the same here. She knows the guy from Poland, and they started talking about Brussels. I then talked to Bongo, and we shared the same idea so it was perfect for us. We looked for places to rent, explained the landlord that we wanna lock people up for a game, and finally we found a a wonderful place!
Didn’t the landlord think it was weird or crazy?
Yes, of course they thought it was crazy, and just not possible. We almost started to give up. We had to wait a very long time for an answer from the city of Brussel itself. But we didn’t give up, we still called them, randomly showed up every once in a while… See, we knew this was the place. “Place de la Liberté“, that sounds really good for an escape game!
Now it’s almost a year that we’re here in this crazy house. We worked really hard, every day and night to finish the house. It was not easy, with our jobs on the side. We came from work, straight to here, and started working everytime until late in the evening. Our neighburs were obviously not too happy with us!
I was going to ask, you guys all have your actual jobs on the side, right? How do you manage to make it all work?
We still have our day jobs, but we all asked our bosses to arrange our schedules, and explained our situation as being independent workers on the side too. Fortunately, they all said yes! As a consequence, we never work all the same hours in our jobs, so there is always somebody here in Let Me Out. And if we have big groups, or teambuilding sessions, we manage to be there, the three of us, and we switch if someone needs to go to work.
Sounds good! So what about a blade room?
Hum, why not? I heard there’s already a skateboarder room somewhere. But you never know! We have 3 rooms now already…
And I can imagine it’s already a whole lot of work for you guys! Given that you’re all bladers too, do you manage to find some time to roll around every now and then?
I personally have less free time. I try to roll at least once a week, but sometimes it’s impossible. So yeah, I don’t blade that much for sure. And sometimes, I do blade 2 days in the week, and I feel like I was missing something!
With the new Planet Park in Brussels, hopefully that will help, especially during the shitty Belgian winter season. Now that summer’s indeed coming, how’s the scene in general in Brussels these days?
It helps to have a park in your hometown, and a sick ass park is even better ahah! Of coursde we skate street, we always try to the hit the streets. It’s maybe 10 of us, but it’s rare that we all get to skate together.
I heard some of you guys just recently went to Barcelona though, how was the trip down there?
It was perfect, with a great crew of friends in the mecca of blade city. The weather wasn’t that great the first few days, but afterwards it all was perfect. It’s always great to be there at a spot you’ve seen for years in edits, and just cruisin’ in BCN with the homies! The thing there is, you never know what you are gonna come across in this town, there is always a spot somewhere. And even if you don’t have the energy to blade, you find it right back when you see that spot, it’s like all your energy is waking up again!
Judging by the photographs you brought back, it doesn’t look too bad indeed! Always good to see you on the blades, too. Now, how about the sponsor situation? You were on Xsjado for a long time, but there have been a few pictures floating around where you were rocking some Valo‘s… What’s the deal today? Are you affiliated with Powerslide in any way still?
Yeah, they kicked me out… I guess. I asked for blades and they never came haha, so I bought some Valo’s. But I had to stop skating them because they hurt my feet, so I’m back rocking the old Xsjado with pieces I find and stuff I get from friends…
It seems rather unclear where Xsjado is headed these days, whose left on the team, etc. Question is, what are you going to skate if these guys ever stop making blades? And what do you think of the whole situation with them, since you’ve been on Xsjado’s forever it seems?
I must say, I really don’t know. The quality of the skates went totally down, it became the worst actually. The last skates I had from Xsjado didn’t resist long until I killed the straps, in just two weeks. The cuff didn’t last long either. I don’t know what skate I should skate, it just feel so good in these blades, I feel very fine in these… As I said, I tried some Valo’s but my feet didn’t really like them, so maybe I’ll try USD’s Aeons, I don’t know. But I admit finding Salomon’s would make me a very happy man!
That’s saying quite something about this industry when your last resort is to get 10 years old boots from a defunct company… You’ve been inside this whole blade game for a long time, how do you see things nowadays? What’s your opinion on the current state of affairs?
I am old school, that’s why I want those blades. I’m a little bit lost with all the skates on the market, nothing really interests me. There are all too expensive I think, and most of the quality sucks. Then, there are still some people who make it awesome, people that still blade for the love and think about it, which is great! The industry itself, I don’t really care for. It’s got its ups and downs for sure, but it seems like people are organizing more competitions and street contests again… Ahah anyway, just keep on rolling everybody, we are all getting older and better!
Talking about people that blade for the love, who are the people you enjoy watching skate nowadays? New faces on the scene that seem promising, cool new kids on the block?
Well, all my friends of course! And way too many names to mention… But my true heros still are Dustin Latimer, Billy O’Neill and Nicolas Bellini. And always amazing to see Broskow and Sizemore on the blades, some amazing things they do ahah! They should make a joint edit. Note Boonnim is also amazing, and last but not least on the list of love, Montre Livingston is the perfect example, always smiling and skating in every situation, he can do everything. He is one of my heroes too.
Speaking of heroes & inspiration, how is it to have a skater girlfriend? Grazyna is arguably one of the very best on this planet, how does it feel to get your ass kicked when you two go out and skate together?
I feel lucky, like the happiest man in the world actually. But yeah, getting my ass kicked every session! Ain’t that easy afterwards when you go home, I always ask for tips to get the tricks better, but she ain’t easy and wont tell me how to do it ahah! All I can say is, she is the best!
To wrap this up, any new projects you’re going to be working on after this interview? Video section, blade tour or anything like that?
Nothing in particular, but maybe going to California, why not? Probably in October, but we will see about that. And one thing is for sure, try to blade more!
We sure hope you will! Any shout out’s, thank you’s, words of wisdom you wanan share with the world?
Wisdom, I doubt it, but thank you’s for sure! The whole scene in Belgium, guys and girls, all the bladers in my small little country who love and accept our rainy country with almost no spots ahah! And all keep on blading nonetheless! Thank you to the whole BXL crew, and Planet Park for sure. The bros fom the BCN trip, thanks to Rui, Manu for printing out the maps, I had an amazing time and thank you for the pictures and the work behind all this. Math, Quentin, Manu & Fred, BCN was great! And of course, Grazyna for being the best, I love you! And love you guys, thank you Fred and Be-Mag!