Skateboarding is Not a Crime...
but damaging property is.

ride and rip with respect...

I do not skate... yet skateboarding is still part of my sensibilities
it has been roughly 20 years since I have done anything more than cruise on a long board

when I skated... it was not all that intense
skating was a sidebar... a mode of transportation... a hoot... a holler... a scream
never an intense study
never a primary discipline
an activity for me... not quite a sport for me

when I rode ramps it was never frequent enough to build any solid skills

I can recall playing JV Soccer for B-CC... there were practices or maybe it was pre-season tryouts at Lymbrook Elementary School
as I chased a black and white ball around a field I could see Jason Farrell, Marcus Wilcoxin, and a cast of others B-CC student riding their boards with small four wheels up and down a shotty little quarter pipe on the playground
then when people were taking the Metro out to the White Flint ditch/ramp I was playing Varsity Volleyball or running winter track
sure I went to the ramp and the ditch... but never with the regularity to take things much further than carving and grinding
yet skateboarding is still part of my soul

while so many of my friends soared sky high over the coping at Cedar Crest Country Club I was hanging with my buddy Rob riding street in the parking lots of downtown Bethesda
we were doing Rail Slides and Grinds on painted curbs...
more for a giggle than an aggro competition
we would run up the stairs and then powerslide our way down the vacant multi-story parking garages
at this time Bethesda was a bit more sleepy of a town
there was no night life so these parking garages were pretty much vacant after business hours

the catamaran was favorite of ours
this was as goofy as things got... but if you got past the goofy it was pretty cool
at the top of the parking garage we would each sit on our skateboards facing the other
then we would put our feet on the other's board and clutch hands
it was goofy... yet high speed and super intense

the spirit of the skateboard followed me to college
yet... college life and its freedom did not increase my attention to the sport
skateboarding was an activity and an interest
yet for some reason I never practiced it or pursued it
the varsity soccer coach would pass the quarter pipe and look on in frustration
giving me a parental glance and maybe a few words of caution as he passed
he and I both hoping that feeble attempt at air would not cause an injury to keep me off the soccer field

Varsity Soccer continued through four of my five falls in my four and a half years of college
while skateboarding and mountain biking mixed in with skim boarding and the introduction to snowboarding on the Burton Backhill during the infrequent east coast snow falls
by the time I graduated college the skateboard was pretty much collecting dust in the corner of my room or even tucked away in the closet or left hanging in the basement

then a few years later through a series of random events I found myself living in Colorado
there I was in Breckenridge Colorado looking for that perfect powder day
arriving with a second hand Burton Woody... riding the out of bounds lines of Loveland Pass on a board without a metal edge... it really must have been a site
it was an interesting ambition for someone who had never been on a chair lift in their life
two years of living in Colorado injected a love for snowboarding in me that has yet to die

looking back there were so many skate sessions before, after, and during the punk shows at the various community centers
there was a short period were I tried to incorporate the bicycle inner tube into my skate style
I would ride with the inner tube around the center of the board between my legs
then when approaching and obstacle I would pull it tight
then like magic when I would lift my feet the board would stick to my feet
honestly... it was more of a novelty than a practiced skill

this photo on ESPN inspired this tangent
JUICE MAGAZINE will get you pumped
Cedar Crest on Gwadzilla

Cedar Crest... I never attended any of the decadent Cedar Crest Skate Jams... they were beyond decadent... the stories from these events were like the Rolling Stones show at Altamont
I do recall stopping by Cedar Crest from time to time... sometimes after mountain biking at the trails at Bull Run... never skated "the crest"

shot of Josh Marlowe from here

this site is sick.... lots of new and old!
this rant on SKATEBOARDING IS NOT A CRIME could easily blend into an arguement for mountain biking on trails closed to bikes... it is a similar notion of love for the sport and respect for the terrain... As long as there is no destruction... it is all good!

similar to pool hoping in our teens... as long as there is no vandalism... it is really a victimless crime... just cooling off on a hot summer night... our summer city street sessions usually ended with a dip in a community pool... I think those days of jumping the fence and dipping in the pool may be behind us... a friend of mine from high school was with the group that went swimming in Carl Rowan's back yard pool... no... it was not my friend who got shot

I worked for Mike Mapp (aka Micro) building skateboard ramps for RAMPTECH
video of Mike Mapp
then I also worked for Bob Blair making snowboards with Jason Farrell
my 20's were spent trying to find a way to make a living in a less than conventional way
it turned out not to be so easy

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

One of the links had a picture of Ned "Peanut" Brown. He used to sell skateboards for the old wooden wheels store in Newark. Jim from Spunk skatezine at the time put on a competition at the 896 ditch. Ned won and that got him back into skating. Jim started a mail order business and I believe is still in the industry. Flashback.