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Sunday, May 19, 2013

Link roundup

Wherein a list of links is presented for your reading pleasure. 


Longboarding continues to define itself in the midst of its current renaissance. Or something. Media seems even less capable of describing longboarding than they did skateboarding. 

Longboarding's Long Ride. Men's Journal, June 2011.
  • "For the uninitiated, a longboard is a skateboard that thinks it's a snowboard." - Grant Stoddard, the article's author. This sentence should have ended after "skateboard". Here are two actual examples of skateboards that think they're snowboards: freebord, flowboardThe freebord actually looks reasonably fun for a snowless snowboarder. Feel free to laugh at the flowboard. I did. Here's another ridiculous invention that is too perverted to laugh at: Streetboard.
  • "Longboarding didn't branch off from skateboarding," says Mike Perreten, co-owner of Landyachtz Longboards. "I think that the California surfers who laid the foundations of skateboarding culture would recognize what we do as skateboarding and what happens in a skate park - y'know, all the tricks - as something really different." As a sidewalk surfer myself, I couldn't agree more. I still think an ollie is pretty essential to skateboarding, though. Surfers do ollies, too. 
  • "Perreten says that most of the 20,000 longboards Landyachtz shipped last year are being ridden by people to re-create the feeling of riding waves or carving powder in an urban setting. But a growing number of riders are tightening their trucks, donning racing leathers and helmets, and pointing their outsize boards downhill – effectively turning a cruiser into a cruise missile. (The current world speed record stands at 80.8 mph and is held by Mischo Erban, another fearless rider from British Columbia.)" Pssht: "outsize" boards. The board is ever the size it needs to be. 
  • "Landyachtz has dialed down its emphasis on competitive downhill by pushing its cruise-oriented models and being increasingly conscious about distancing the brand from downhilling's more reckless meets and events. 'We make and sell boards, so we want longboarding to grow, right?'says Perreten. 'If it gets a reputation solely as something risky and dangerous, that expansion will be limited.'" Interesting tactic. The exact opposite mentality seems to dominate streetstyle skateboarding. Unfortunately, I always add. I've always appreciated the surf imagery in skateboarding. Later, I developed an appreciation for the comic book or humorous imagery. Yet streetstyle skateboarding continues to have pockets of devotees dedicated to skulls and bones, death, naked women, drug "culture" (just use the damn drugs, stop trying to make it anything more than mere substance abuse.), property damage, and authority flouting. Not to mention the daredevil sect that embraces self-inflicted injuries, temper tantrum-induced board throwing (good for sales, though!), and early burnout.
Students grow board of walking. Easterner Online, Eastern Washington University. 
  • "Another hazard to riding a longboard on campus is that there are squirrels everywhere." Ummm... Hmm. Okay. Let's move on.
  • "Just be in a comfortable spot where you have things to grab onto for balance. Even standing on it in the grass [helps]. Move your feet to feel the flex and get used to the bearings of the trucks. Know how far you need to lean in order to turn before you actually go," said Fleming. Seems like good advice for anybody picking up the sport/craft.
  • "Don't try and stop because you'll fall. The only way to stop is to drag your foot and if you drag your foot you'll probably fall," said Koch. Hmmm... Think before you speak, people! This kind of rhetoric reminds me of when fixed-gear biking came into vogue 6-7 years ago. Also, there are plenty of ways to stop a skateboard. You can slide, jump of the board, carve into the hill, steer into grass, drag the tail (if you have one). 
  • Also, if the author of this article is an undergrad majoring in communications, they either need to get better at writing or switch majors. 

Competitions abound. 

  • Street League. Whatever this is.
  • Pros playing SKATE. If skateboarding ever makes it into the Olympics, SKATE will probably be the first event to be indoctrinated. 
  • Bowl riding frenzy over at Vans. The most unnatural type of skateboarding I can think of. The creative skaters who first skated bowls were the pioneers of modern ramp skating. Yet woe be unto skaters who only stoke on bowls: their opportunities to skate are few and far between.
  • Thrasher has coverage of the Vans Pool Party, too. Vans makes a good shoe but they can't edit a video. Thrasher's got you covered. Props also to Thrasher for offering the video in Quicktime. Flash sucks. Also, the part Vans didn't show is when Caballero falls so hard he needs help walking out of the bowl. Thrasher has no problem reminding us that bowl riding is freaking dangerous. In a bowl, even when you fall from tiny little mistakes, there is a high likelihood of compound fractures. I'll carve a flow course for the rest of my life, of this I'm sure. But my bowl riding days are coming to an end, if they haven't ended already. There is nothing fun anymore about dropping in on a 9 foot wall and struggling to get everything perfectly set up for the immediate, rapid, and tight ascension up the opposite wall. The older I get, the more I enjoy myself on hills, parking lots, banks, and non-vert transitions. Of course, I've discussed this before: learn as many different styles as you can as a youth, because those are the ones that will stick with you into adulthood. Learning a new style as an adult takes commitment and the luck of already having the right body type for it. Learning a new style as a youth, you can actually develop your body to be the right body type. 

Other links.


  1. Great link roundup man.

    When I was a kid I pushed Mongo, I didn't know there was a difference back in those days.
    I'll tell ya what man, having done that way back when really comes in handy now.
    I like to go on semi-long strolls on a bike path, almost nightly, everyday, even though I have bad knees and bad legs. My front thigh starts to burn and lockup after about 5 mins of solid pushing so I switch legs and push off the other way and skate switch or sometimes fakie.
    I can go back and forth between my pushing legs the same, no real difference for me.
    My fav go to tricks are Boneless's, 180 Boneless's and No Comply tricks, having started off Mongo makes it easy to take my front leg off the board without to much effort.
    Personally I think skating Mongo can be unstable and it takes an extra second to setup your back foot, but I don't really think it's "ugly" like the skate world tries to make it out to be.
    Who cares, it's pushing off to get speed, it's not like you're doing some "mongo" trick that looks bad, people take shit too serious.
    If I could suggest anything to skaters, especially those that are aging and their knees, legs and back are rapidly falling apart too it'd be to learn to push both ways.
    It really comes in handy, it's kind of like a pinch runner in baseball.

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