the corner

I like watching good skating. Good, new skating. Preferably skating by people with names I've never heard of before, or names I'll never learn of even. Sometimes it's fucking cool to just see a video with a bunch of heavy energy and all-over-the-place type of style and spot selection that you don't even care about the names. And maybe when you finally do ask somebody in the know and learn that name, you gain a sense of pride or accomplishment as if you're the one who was doing whatever trick you saw that made you shoot chocolate milk out your nose. Because it's sick to see rippers. I mean real rippers. Those people who light up the streets just by stepping foot on them. It's that subtle, authentic attitude that appeals to me, personally. Nothing forced. Nothing taught. But it's that 'something' that's acquired somewhere along the way and once it's there, it's there for good. It's those dudes who can make the plain Jane street corner you walk past everyday to work into a memorable spot from a video. I like that kind of skating. I like that kind of skater. I usually don't care much about trick vocabulary so much as I do about how he looks doing it.

The difficult point of reason is being able to see past the natural flaw within rollerblading which makes it so beautifully tragic: rollerblading itself. I'm not sure if anyone's noticed, but this shit is insanely difficult to make look decent, or tolerable. Never mind looking cool. That shit's just not going to happen. So give that up. Stop with your giant rails and your misty flips and your fuckboi gear. Just stop. Most of you are broke ass thirty-somethings. And if you're not broke then you're corny. Maybe you're like me, broke and corny. But that shouldn't mean we all leave the house and dress like 18 year old aspiring rappers dressing like 2009 era skateboarders. So just stop, because there's no 12-step meetings in a church basement to help you along the way. If you can't stop, at least ask yourself the simple question: "Why bother? Why am I doing this trick? Why am I wearing hemmed skinny sweatpants with purple leopard spots?" If it's a base attempt to look cool in the face of the popular public eye, quit right then and there. Now I don't know who you are and I'm not aware of what level of social ineptitude you're at exactly, but let me fill you in on a little something about the real world: Nobody cares. Not a single person. Look. Listen up. Understand this, because this could be a revelation for you: Rollerbladers don't even care. We've seen those tricks before. Every last one of them. Sometimes even over the same, played out fucking stair set. Even if you do the gnarliest fucking gap ever done to whatever flamboyant fucking boot-grinder-slide thing you can imagine, what's the best you get out of that? It's not 1996 anymore and MTV doesn't want to endorse you or your homeboy with the purple, bulky skates that match his hat. So tell me: How do you benefit? A couple of 'likes' on your Facebook status? Somebody puts you in their MySpace Top 8? A new friend request, perhaps? Couple less dick pics in your DM? Couple more? I don't know your sexual preference and I won't pretend to care about it, either. But I can tell you this: we're all gay in the eyes of the real world. Even those super intellectual-artsy-new york-skateboard types who despise Donald Trump because he's homophobic. Even those guys call us 'faghots.' Let that sink in for a second.

Why am I such a shit-talker? Firstly, it's funny to me. It's funny how more than half of our total 'participant' population can't even or won't even skate yet they get bent out of shape over the gossip aspect of our fruitless culture, (contradictory, I know).

Question: What's more pathetic than rollerblading in 2017? Answer: Not rollerblading but caring enough to gossip about rollerblading in 2017.

Sure, we're all at the end of the line here. Extinction is imminent, I'm sure. But a few of us are still going heavy and enjoying the ride even when it's crashing and burning. All you has-beens and used-to-be's need to stand back and watch the carnage unfold from the hills. I don't mean the household names or the ex-professionals, although some of those dudes kinda suck, big time. I really mean the hobbyists who just stopped years ago because they sucked so incredibly badly, yet they can't help themselves from logging onto that ol' internet thing and putting in their two cents as if their money ever talked in the first place. Stop it. Again, there's no program to aid you along the way to recovery so you're going to have to brave this on your own pitiful will and determination. (You can do it, probably.)

While all you *useless* haters repent and find God, (or whatever else it'll take for you to shut the fuck up), we'll be rollerblading. Blah, blah, blah. Same old rally cry. And I don't shy from a comical confrontation nor do I refrain from hating on rollerbladers and whatever they do--but what differs from me and most of you is that my hate is actually trying to change rollerblading for the better, whereas you who despise me continue to try or support from the sidelines the same old tired tricks, at the same schoolyard, palm-tree spots, expecting the world to wake up one day and proclaim in unison: "Holy shit! That lip-ringed faghot in skinny jeans is kinda rad after all! How could we have been so blind all along! Someone call Kurt Loder! We need to get this shit back on the air!"

By now, I'm sure you've found God in recovery and are well underway the step for making amends, but I wouldn't expect a miracle just yet. [Insert the Serenity Prayer here.] Nevertheless, at times like these at least we can be sure of one thing--our death. And although it's a'coming as sure as the cancer within us all, understand that it's a'coming on our terms. Because as long as bacemint is alive, rollerblading is alive. And when all your favorite companies start to quit on you, (as many have and many more will), when they stop trying to put out product or upload content, when they begin to show signs of fatigue or apathy due to financial distress or general depression, you'll have us. Your children will have us. And God damn it, your children's children will have us. (But not in a Robyn Collins kind of way or that other creepy dude from Razors flowteam. What's his name?).

Sweet dreams.

- dadchuk