The mainstream media proved once again this weekend that it only takes one article headline to push skateboarding into having the bad rep that it has always been tarnished with over the years. This particular piece in the Guardian/Observer refers to the Boston bombers who wreaked havok across the pond last week with their horrific plans to blow up as many people as they could at the Boston Marathon.
This newspaper ran with the headline that depicted terrorist Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as a “skateboarding weed smoker, who flirted with jihad”, even though in the same article Tsarnaev was said to have been interested in various other normal pastimes and sports. Boxing and football were mentioned but the newspaper chose to categorise the Islamist and box it up as youth gone wild. There’s no doubt that this guy’s outlook had long gone walkies due to his participation in this dreadful atrocity, but tarring skateboarders with the same old brush that has been dipped in the sticky pot of media bullshit once again rang loud bells this morning. Why should skateboarders be brought into this tragedy? Why do journalists always feel a need to stereotype us?
This monolithic entity has demonized our scene as much as they have glamourised it over the years and with skateboarding being so popular right now across mainstream media and brand campaigns take this as a reminder that there are still people out there who believe that what we do is the work of the devil himself. Most skateboarders are, and always will be creative, like-minded individuals who will always bring fun to this planet whatever age they may be. It’s about time that those media whores who categorise us wake up and live in the year 2013 rather than being stuck in the 1980s when skateboarders listened to their records backwards, wore leather gloves and spoke of ‘rat bones’ and ‘dudes’.
Speculation is the initial basis of journalism; the raw speculation is sifted and examined to find potential truths. Like it or not, 24-hour rolling news means that much of that speculation is aired in public, and sometimes we as skateboarders lose.
Bomb hills not people.
(For the record, I am aware of exactly what the article itself states about the character of the offenders. This rant came from the headline as stated in the opening sentence as it will allow readers to stereotype and could also lead to skate spots being tightened further by security guards.)
This year’s fully sold out Crossfire Halloween Massacre boat party in London was a scorcher! Some serious efforts went into this one in terms of fancy dress with a selection of nautical treats arriving down the plank! Zombie Sailors, Pirates-a-plenty and even a bloke dressed as a BOAT were present. I’m amazed how he managed to get that huge wooden creation all the way to the Battersea Barge, which was not easy to find on the night.
The deadly rock duo that is made up from the DJ presence of Planet Rock’s Phoebe Winter and Total Rock ‘s Talita TwoShoes kicked the night off with a selection of classics before handing over the decks to Johnny Doom and Matt Stocks. The Kerrang! Radio duo had the dance floor rocking as fiends fell through the door, some of them already bitten by the cold weather, Thames rats and South London Vampire’s. The beats dropped like bombs from XFM Remix Show overlord, Eddy Temple Morris whose mash ups had the roof raised alongside the demonic DJ skills of Stereo:Type.
You came, we saw. Your outfits were sick. The boat was one huge mash-up! Joe Brady spent the night taking these amazing photo’s of you all. Enjoy them, share them and thanks for coming down if you were there.
Thanks to Paul Parker for his incredible artwork, Joe, Chloe, Nic, Holly and the Battersea Barge for their help on the night, and all of the DJ’s mentioned above for their amazing work on the decks.
This weekend’s Downtown Showdown held in Amsterdam went offin fine style. If you didn’t manage to tune into the live stream of the event from Vans then catch up with the highlights from all 4 teams.
Flip team rider Overall “Best Pro” Luan Oliveira skated with remarkable consistency and smooth style, landing tricks and winning 1st place on the Palace Obstacle and the Blueprint Obstacle. Best Overall Am was Element team rider Ross McGouran, who also took 3rd place on the Flip obstacle, skating hard all day. He made every transfer the windmill-inspired Antiz obstacle had to offer.
Inside the massive Gasholder building at the Flip Obstacle the atmosphere intensified with heavy hitting last tricks and a solid performance by first place finisher Dominik Dietrich, who set the bar with a wallie up and Nollie heelflip down the ledge.
At Blueprint, Luan Oliveira landed a variety of flip tricks over the pyramid and on the ledge. Billy Marks double flipped the gap to flat and walked away with 1,000 Euros for 2nd place. Technical and creative skater Dallas Rockvam took third place by using the entire design, which was inspired by the barges and canals of Amsterdam.
The Antiz Obstacle rose above the venue floor like a classical Dutch Windmill on Acid. Rob Smith took first place by skating every angle, while Ben Nordberg’s backside nose blunt on the extension ricocheted into applause that reverberated off the walls.
The popularity of the Scooter is one of the most frustrating curses of modern times within our culture. 10 years ago, the enemy of all skateboarders were fruitboots but the trends of school playing grounds have shifted towards the vermin on 2 wheels. Hoardes of little shits are now buzzing around skateparks without any clue of how stupid they look; clogging up lines in their droves and draining sessions due to a lack of co-ordination and etiquette.
Today, the skateboarders from the British band Giants have released ‘Snakes‘, a track that highlights the problem and rages from start to finish. This is the first offering lifted from their brand new mini-album ‘These Are The Days’ that will be released on September 17th and available as a free download. Weighing in at just over a minute, Snakes packs more punch than a hill bomb slam at 50mph and is a great introduction to a band that are carving out some great waves in the UK hardcore scene right now.