Friday, March 27, 2015
Sunday, March 22, 2015
Looking back on my youth I've started to connect the dots of how some of my present life interests begun, and how those early interests cultivated into other interests throughout my life that in one way shape or form are all interconnected. Skateboarding seems to be the nucleus that spawned many of my lifelong interests, the mid 80's skateboarding was so fascinating to me, it was the first time I became aware of what it is to be "Cool"! All the kids in my elementary school were getting new skateboard setups with name brand components, all of the parts on the board had a nickname given by the specific company (slime balls,rat bones, rip grip, gorilla ribs, cellblocks, swiss bearings, nose bones, ultra lights, flypaper...the list goes on.) Everyone was in competition for the coolest setup. Then after you had the board ready to shred you had to have the correct gear to fulfill the part. There were so many cool brands back then, and I was instantly hooked on having the "cool" gear. I remember Illewsion of the Bad Lux crew and another friend Andrew Freeborn holding down the coolest in skate apparel. (skate rags, T&C wrist bands, vision street wear, air walk, hip packs, life's a beach hats, rector knee pads, anything Powell Peralta was the hottest.) Stickers were always important back then too, your new board had to have the newest stickers. The quest for individuality was also expressed by what kind of grip tape you had on your board, what color, what brand, did you cut out shapes in your grip tape or rip lil pieces and place them all over, did you write your favorite bands on the grip tape? This lead to the actual skateboarding itself and all the odd names of tricks that were to be learned. I remember reading about a trick that Peanut Brown who was a local at the EXTON HALFPIPE was doing when he was interviewed by Transworld, he said he was doing called... alley oop eggplant front side channel invert. I thought that was the coolest trick ever even though I Had no intentions of dropping in on that vert ramp...LOL! Skateboarding was very competitive in all aspects and it was most fun when skating with a group of people, this is were I was exposed to new things and ideologies throughout my entire life on a skateboard. Well it was only natural that if the Pros had a crew name then you and your local crew had to have a crew name, I remember showing up at the "Media Locals" hangout and seeing a launch ramp spray painted with "word ^" as in "word up!" it was great play on words and obviously a hip hop term at the time. Writing on things and at different spots where you would skate was the punk rock side of skating that has also stuck to me like glue. It seemed no matter were you were or who you were with skaters would write on things...Be it a skate campy logo, your crews nickname, a band you were in to , an anarchy symbol, a peace symbol etc... Graffiti was part of this rebellious scene that I fell in love with. It played the backdrop for many skate sessions in new places with new friends, that today I call Old friends. Chasing "cool" was instilled in me at a young age...the gear, the fitti, the music, the thrill of speed and danger, the pride in having something with all the cool parts, and the love of hanging with a group of friends, raising hell and telling stories will always be a part of my life.