Interview by Caleb Sweeting
Jason Crombie’s name on Instagram is @burritodick, but we don’t judge him for it, because he is the editor-in-chief of our favourite magazine, Monster Children. He’s contributed to Vice, Oyster and is also the founder of Wooooo Magazine. I had a 20 minute conversation with Crombie on my iPhone and recorded the whole thing, then typed it up for your entertainment. Some spoilers include talking about legendary skateboarder/Monster Children guest-editor, Jason Lee’s bacne, the weirdest place Crom’s had a wank and why he hates interviewing people. Things get a little weird. Enjoy!
When you were 18 where did you see yourself in the future?
When I was 18 I wanted to be, well I kind of think I wanted to be dead at 27, because I figured that I was going to be an artist. I was going to be a painter and my plan was to live this crazy–
…drug-fuelled, artistic sort of devil, no care lifestyle and leave this incredible legacy and work– and people would write books about me in a few years and there’d be a documentary made about me… So I had some pretty fantastic ideas of what kind of person I was gonna be. But when you’re that age, I was convinced, I really thought I was going to be hugely famous at 18. I grew up in Echuca, which is– do you know Echuca?
It sounds like a country town?
Yeah it is. It’s on the border of New South Wales and Victoria, it’s on the Murray. I was 18 when I moved out of home and I think that must have been about, Christ, 15 thousand people when I left– it’s a very small town. Well it’s probably about double or triple that now, but yeah the sky was the limit when I was 18. I like moved to Melbourne and yeah then I ended up going to New York… But I lived past 27 and ended up working in magazines and interviewing people and faffing around and tricking everyone into believing I’m a writer– that’s the truth of it. I bullshitted my way into a career. But I honestly didn’t think I’d live to 41 when I was 18… it sounds so ridiculous but that’s what I thought.
It’s a heart-warming story man.
So speaking of you being a writer and bullshitting your way, in the last issue of Monster Children you interviewed yourself… What’s next are you going to interview, let’s say, your dog?
I’ll tell you what– I wouldn’t mind never doing interviews again. I’m fucking sick of it. Interviewing people’s a drag, I used to love it– I still love it, but like I dunno it’s pumping up other peoples careers all the time, like ‘check this guy out’, ‘check this guy out’, ‘have a look at this dude.’ I get sick of it you know, I mean it’s my job… Actually you know don’t print any of that, I love interviewing people (laughs). I don’t know who I am going to interview next.
But yeah, the first person I ever interviewed was my grandfather, for when I was in high school for history. We had to interview someone who was around during World War II, so I interviewed my grandfather and yeah I didn’t really expect to be doing, you know interviews for the majority of my life. I’ve done a lot of interviews. Does that answer your question? Not really does it? I’m just waffling now dude, I’m just taking the ball and running off…
Nah, nah I like it.
I thought you we’re going to give me a bit of a different answer, me paying you out about interviewing yourself…
What do you mean? Did you think I was going to take the piss a bit more…
Well yeah, I said are you going to interview your dog next.
Well, I don’t have a fucking dog. I had a German Sheppard named ‘Zeus’ and he had epilepsy. Plus he was German too, so he wouldn’t have understood what I was saying.
Do you have a cat?
Ehh, nah I don’t have a cat either. We don’t have any pets.
Just your girlfriend?
Just my girlfriend yeah. And that’s enough (laughs).
Alright we’ll just leave it there… So legendary skateboarder Jason Lee aka Earl from 'My Name is Earl' is guest editing issue 48 of Monster Children. What’s the guy like?
He’s a lovely bloke, yeah. He’s nice.
Yeah! A nice guy…
I saw you guys hung out a bit, what did you two get up to?
We went to Denton, Texas, which is where he lives now and ah, what did we do? We tore around on his motorbike and shot guns and drank beer and yeah just fucked around on his property and sort of checked out the town that he’s from… I’ll tell you one thing, in Texas, if you ever go to Texas, watch out for long grass cause there’s these things called, I don’t know what the technical or scientific name for ‘em is, there called chiggers, which I think it’s spelt ‘c-h-i-g-g-a-r-s’.
Thanks for the spelling, yeah…
Might have to Google it and make sure [lucky I did Crombie]. But they’re tiny little microscopic- they’re almost like flees, they’re from the arachnid family… they’re little microscopic spiders.
Yeah, they hang out in grass, and they wait until you walk past and they jump on ya. You can’t see ‘em, and then they feed on your skin around like a pore and then the protein they get from that pushes them into the next part of their lifecycle and they drop off your body and they go lay eggs in the grass somewhere else. These little… these bastards things, 24/48 hours later you are covered from head to toe in red welts and then I had to go away for six weeks and you’re just scratching the piss out of yourself, it’s crazy.
So this happened to you?
This happened to me in Texas and the weird thing was I was the only person it happened to and we were sort of videoing Jason riding his bike, we had a car and a camera out and he went past us and as he went past his shirt flapped up and I saw on his back, he had all these red dots and I thought poor bastard, he’s got back acne.
Yeah he’s got bacne! And it wasn’t bacne at all. It was the fuckin’ chigger bites!
That’s so funny.
So yeah when I got back to New York after Texas I was two, three days in and I thought I had scabies and I thought I had bed bugs and then I ended up ringing him up [Jason] and telling him what the deal was and he said, ‘yeah you’ve got chiggers.’ But the other guys I went with, they didn’t attack them–I think I’m attractive to insects, because if there’s a mosquito in the room and five people in the room, it’ll always come to me. Guaranteed every time…
Must be something in your blood man?
I think it’s my blood type.
So we’ll change things up a bit. I know you have quite a fascination with, masturbation…
Where’s the weirdest place you’ve 'jerked the gherk?' And be honest man.
Oh nah, nah, listen. You’re never going to get a… I won’t lie to ya.
I jerked off… Where did I jerk off? I was probably camping with my family; I went for a wank behind a tree. That’s probably the weirdest place– I look back on that and think, you know, you couldn’t do that as an adult, like imagine getting caught jerking off behind a tree when you’re like 35 years old... you’d go to jail. But you know, this is like when I was like 13 or whatever… I’m just trying to think I’ve had sex in crazy places– crazier places… Isn’t that funny how that’s more acceptable isn’t it? Like you’ve fucked someone in a movie theatre, [but] you have a wank in the movie theatre you can go to jail.
Suddenly it becomes less hi-five-able?
Yeah nah, it’s not cool. It’s disgusting.
Monster Children Jason Lee Issue #48 is available