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Wednesday, October 05, 2005


I did some skateboarding last night. I busted out the old Santa Cruz and cut some fine asphalt. I was in Nyack, and walking back to Jimmy's to visit my stuff, which includes the old Santa Cruz, when I came upon a hill, a low grade quarter mile of clean near mint asphalt. The suburbs are good for some things. I absolutely could not resist.

I got to Jimmy's, put on some sneakers, dug out the board and walked right back up that hill, noting the inevitable swatch of gravel that collects at the bottom of all such hills. At the top I packed myself a bat hit, and took in the serene, post-midnite, suburban autumn setting. Very nice. I mounted the Santa Cruz, and immediately thought of all the reasons I should NOT be doing this.

Yes it was late, good because there would be no cars, but bad because I was alone and if it went bad, well I didn't want to dwell on that then, or now. The main reason to NOT be doing this is I'm freaking forty. I have not been on a skateboard with any regularity for twenty years, and indeed the last time I was on a skate, about four years ago, ended up very embarrassing for yours truly. I was at Chelsea Peirs skate park ostensibly to show my niece some tricks. What tricks? I tried to drop in on the SMALLEST pipe they had, it was four feet high. I got up there, dipped my nose - BAM - face plant! Ouch. Very much ouch. I realized then why I hadn't been on a skate since 1985 - the shit hurts!

I never could drop in any way, not at 15, not at 36, and most certainly not at 40. I developed into more of a street skater, and West Point, where I grew up, is a haven for street skating. That's why the pigs outlawed our kind. We tore that shit up! Well last night I wasn't near a pipe, pool, or ramp, thankfully. No, all I had here was a nice low grade, smooth ass ride. I cut in.

The key is large sweeping turns, facilitated by my super 'loose' front truck, culminating in a cut back up the slope followed by a 180 kick turn, and back down you go. Repeat. Well, it took a while before I could pull off the kick turn, but it came back, I had to bail a couple times.

Bailing is the most important maneuver one can learn on a skate, it literally can save your life. Executed poorly, bailing can be excruciatingly painful - road rash anyone? The secret is to get your feet moving as fast as your body is already moving when you jump ship. Executed properly it looks, feels, and sounds like you were wearing scuba flippers.

Anyway, I loosened up, and by the time I was halfway down the hill, the years between seemed to slip away. I even executed the 'Honk' (power slide) just in front of the gravel swatch. Dismount. Kick up skate. Promise myself to do more of this. With pads, supervision, daylight, and no beer. Well, that's not very likely is it now. Regardless, I promise to be careful.

I think I'll bring my skate to Brooklyn. I see a lot of the guys who work or live in the building gettin 'round on skates. It makes sense. Wait till they get a hold of the old man and his old school, 10 inch wide, single tail, non-concave (flat), deck with Indy 169s and, best of all, big soft urethane wheels. I can't dig the new skate wheel, well it's not that new. They are like little rocks, designed to be fast on wood (ramps), they are not a comfy ride. The Best Wheel Ever was the Kryptonic 70mm reds. They made love to the road. In comparison to today's wheels, the Kryps were like pillows. You felt the road in a sensual way, the feeling today is much more, say......Unsympathetic.

There was a brief time, in 1983 maybe, when I had the greatest skate ever. I had the 70 reds, on Indy 169's, mounted on the Powell Peralta Ray 'Bones' Rodriguez model. You can check it, it'll hold water. Call up Tony Hawk and say: 'Tony, I got a Bones model deck with Indys and 70 reds." He'll back me. Tony Alva, the 'real' Tony Alva would not, but he's sort of a cock. His skates were cool, he had style, but when Stacey got his shit together with the Bones Brigade - fah get about it! The 'fake' Tony Alva will attest to that.

That skate bought the farm back in spring 85, and that's when I got the Santa Cruz. I don't remember a lot of skating post 85, but the Santa Cruz has all the markings of a well worn street skate. I like that. I don't care for new, take a look at my guitars!

Great post. Glad no major injuries were sustained during your odyssey. The Ray Bones deck... did you get that from Mr. L Smart? I sold him my purple Ray Bones deck if I recall correctly. It had Tracker magnesium X Tracks (the yellow ones) and either Z Rollers, or Bones wheels on it. That skate was the best I ever owned with the exception of my Dogtown Jim Muir.

Do they make Kryptonics in that soft durometer anymore? I hate those little tiny street skating wheel of today too.

Ah, the honking…
Yes, I Got the Bones deck from you via Mr. L Smart. He wanted the mag trucks more than the deck I think.

No honkin on the 70 reds though! I think that's why I put my Sims 'The Wheel' on that skate instead of the reds - guiltless honking. I wonder who ended up with those wheels, maybe your brother.....We might have to APB the gang and see if anybody has got em.
I guess I have your latest column for HUEZINE...

Nicely done
Man, I don't think anybody EVER honked 70mm reds, or any reds for that matter. I liked the way they were so quite during bombing runs. You'd be hauling down Stoney Lonesome luge style and you'd just hear a slight hiss as someone drafted your ass right past you. I almost went with the reds once, but they really dogged out on plywood ramps/halfpipes. Since vert was my greatest skating addiction, I couldn't give up the harder wheels.

Mike Honeker had a set of 70mm reds on his Sims 42" log skate. If you ever took that thing on a run from the top of the mountian, you know what hauling ass is. The wheels would be hot to the touch when you picked it up at the bottom.
You should search for "Kryptonic" on ebay I found loads of their stuff on there, and yes some red 70mm.
Wow, this is some serious tech talk.

Now I know what Annie and Diettra feel like...
I think the reds I had came from Honnaker's log, and somehow I think your brother was involved, as well as the craft shop and Honnakers theiving of my Lethur Records copy of 'Too Fast For Love' by Motley Crue.
I have that record. I can make you a CD copy if you want.
I knew Ken would say that...
I bet I still have those cool mag trucks somewhere.... I remember trying to scrape some of the material off to see if they would burn cool like magnesium....
Aha! You live! I remember trying to burn the mags.
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