A page from the Garage Magazine # 11 interview "Twenty Questions With Trevelen". ".....being a hero is like being a peanut butter & jelly sandwich". Check question #18 out, too. Beautifull shot of Trev's El Jefe, probably still my favorite Superco bike. Photograph by Estevan Oriol, another person who's work I admire.I came into LAX at 8:00am one time. When I got off the plane, there was a message from the person I was supposed to hook up with, and catch a ride to the LBC from. They got bumped off their flight in NYC, and thought they probably would get in to LAX around 1:00pm. Well, shit! So, I called Trevelen, and the resulting conversation went something like this:
Trevelen: RICH! Waaaasss 'sapening!
Rich: Hey, I'm standing in LAX...
T: Haaaa! Good one.....'sup man?
R: No man, I'm stuck at LAX, my ride won't be here 'till like 1:00 so I can go down to Long Beach.
T: Aw, fuck that! Come up here and hang with me and my dad at the shop. I'll run you down to LB after dinner. Hang tight, I'm coming to get you.
R: Cool, I'm in front of American's baggage.
A couple minutes later, my phone rings:
Trevelen: Man, I'm sorry, I gotta go up and talk to these movie guys or some bullshit, walk down and grab a cab, it's a flat rate to Downtown. I'll be back when you get here, and dad's here.
So, I grabbed this cab, and the cabbie did really well until we get to Downtown, and then he's like trying to make like he doesn't know the area, and he's running the meter up on me. I knew where we were, and finally I told him to ".....shut the fucking meter off " when we passed the shop the second time. We pull in the shop drive, and all of a sudden, he knows where we are, and now he says the fare is double, because we went over the L.A. River, and that means were out of Downtown.
So, I'm arguing with the cabbie, and Trev pulls up. He gets out, steps in between the cabbie and I, and says: "Hey, put your money away, I got this" . So, I step in front of Trev, and he puts the fist with YOUR tattooed on the knuckles under my chin and says: "Don't make me mess you up, man, I got this!". I let him pay, only because I didn't want to see the other fist with NEXT tatted on it.
I admire a lot of things about Trevelen, the least of which is his talent and craftsmanship when it comes to building bikes. That's a given. It's the intensity and passion with which he approaches life that you can't help but find infectious. It's that Downtown/East Los/El Lay kinda vibe. I'm the kind of guy who every now and then needs to get mentally "recharged" - you know, jazzed about building bikes and life in general, and visiting Trev for a couple days always does it for me.
Outside the world of bikes, a lot of people don't know what a talented artist and photographer he is. I mean, exhibit quality composition and work. And, I think what I admire the most about him is his love and involvement in his comunidad, his community. The Latino history of L.A. is a very important part of his life, and Trev feels you need to give back something to the community, and especially to the younger kids in particular. Trev feels that it's important that they have other choices besides "....bangin' and dopin' " as he says. That's why he gives talks to the younger school kids, and runs his L.A. Boxing Academy as an alternative to what they may see around them every day as they grow. Trev knows the "other side of life", and he hopes to show kids that there are other positive choices to make, and trys to show them that with hard work and education, and resisting the easy temptations of the streets, there isn't anything that they can't accomplish in life, and there isn't anything they can't become. That's a side of Trevelen that few people ever see.
"A man never stands so tall, as he does when he bends down to help a child."