CRETIN: /kret'in/, /kree'tn/, n.
Congenital loser; an obnoxious person; someone who can't do anything right

CONCRETIN: /kahn'kret'in/, /kahn'kree'tn/, n.
Cretin who loves to skate concrete

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Extreme Turns 4! + Birth of The Concretins

Friday, April 5th 2002 - Louisville Extreme Park Opened to the public! On the anniversary of this great event I ask for A Moment of Silence in Thanks to the Sentient Being (Dave Armstrong) for giving us such a gift. I don't know why we got it - and I don't care, but I'm gonna ride as often as I can. AND, I will be thankful everytime I do.

A Not So brief History of The Concretins (Skid-centric version)

The first time I saw the completed park was on Sunday, April 7, 2002. Brutha Steve and I went down to check it out. I immediately went and bought a set of pads, dug out some shitty X-Games Skateboard I bought from Target, sanded the logo off, and wrote EAT ME on the bottom in giant letters with a sharpie.

Steve and I returned to the park the very next day; the first time we skated the park was April 8, 2002. The Skidmore Curse (a combination of great looks, magnetic personality, unbridled natural ability, and huge amount of humility that keeps it all in check) caused just about everybody in the park to talk to us that day. Perhaps it was the fact that Steve showed up with a 1978 Logan Earth Ski with an enormous set of Kryptonics which blew everybody's mind, but mostly it was the Skidmore Curse.

We kept seeing a lot of the same people no matter what time we went. I remember thinking what a dumb-ass Kyle was when I saw him at the park at 6:00am one day. But, I rethought that one, as I, too, was at the park, and, as everyone knows, I'm a smart-ass - not a dumb-ass. Kyle and I spoke more often after we realized we shared such sickness for the concrete that we would go at six in the morning. So, then there were three.

Originally, Steve and I were vying for a position on The Husky Skate Team. Old guy skaters gravitate to each other at a park. Old, round guys seem to have a greater pull - it's some law of astrophysics. I was bigger then. Kyle was bigger then. Even Steve was bigger back then. There were several others who fit the mold of old, round and skating, but they went by the wayside. Just a passing phase for them, I suppose.

But, eventually, pounds were shed and we started seeing a lot more of Nick. The first time Steve saw him he said, "Hey that guy has the same tattoo on his leg as I have on my ass!" I dared Steve to go tell him. This dare was funnier then than it is now, because we assumed if you skated you were all punk and belligerent. Little did we know Nick was; a) skinny as a rail (it's so hard to tell under all those pads!), b) well on his way to being a Bon Jovi lovin puss, and c) still playing with dolls. I think Nick and Paul were already tight so, we got the bonus pack when we hit it off with Nick. Five down one to go.

At some point we started seeing Jon fairly often on the Sunday Sessions. He's a Buckeye crazy enough to drive untold sums of miles in the middle of nite to hit the park by 7 or 8 in the morning. Perhaps he felt obligated to talk to us because we Bogart the snake run, or like so many others before him he was allured by the Skidmore Curse that was now rubbing off on, and being conveyed by, the entire group. Either way, it's a blast get to see him when we do and I'm glad to call him part of the crew. With Jon The six-pack of Concretins was complete.

I would have to say the solidifying point of The Concretins, maybe more so than my own personal talents and magnetism, was the Ollie's trip. When we all hit that park together and skated for hours on end with the same fervor as a short Sunday session - that was our Full Metal Jacket. That was when Nick said, "We need a name for team" and not a single person said "What team?" The Concrete had set up for the Concretins.

Skidzilla gets sentimental in 3, 2, 1:

I look forward to getting together at the park all week, every week. During the winter I pray for decent weather so we can skate. I love the park, but much more so when any combo of the group makes it out. (I watch other people skating and being pissed and I wonder if they are even having fun. Never a question with our group - it's always fun.) I wouldn't skate as much as I do without having met you guys, and I wouldn't be as good at it either. So, a big, fat cheers to all you schmucks. And, Happy Anniversary in a way.

shop as usual and avoid panic buying


  • At 10:54 AM, Blogger Nikoli said…

    Damn! I was gonna post a SkateNite recap, but even though I landed a new trick (railslides - on a ramp), it was uneventful compared to that literary spew by Skidzilla. Well done Dave. But Kyle's kickflip 50-50 grind was quite impressive, as was the half-cab-blunt-pivot, but I digress... I'll now join 'Zilla in his long winded sentimentality...

    Has it been 4 years? MoFo! When the park opened I first migrated to the street course, that's what I knew. Bank tricks and manual pads, with an occasional rock-n-roll on a quarter pipe. I even got on TV and in the newspaper talking about how cool the park was(is). I liked mini ramps too, but the only "mini-ramp" section was the shallows of the snake run... where I too kept running into the same old dudes. In the beginning, I have to say I never really skated "with" Kyle, because there was no skating with him. I'd just watch in awe. It was like watchin' BanThis live and in person! I've since learned that yea, he knows that he can skate like a MoFo, but he's humble, and doesn't hesitate to share his knowledge, nor his ramp, nor his beer. I'd also see random dudes just fly through the snake run and bowl. Carvin' and grindin' like some old backyard pool footage. I remember thinkin' I gotta learn that... Old man Mark taught me to always stand up when goin' through a transition, no matter if it was round wall, or vertical, and to strive to keep all 4 wheels on the 'crete for speed. My carves improved immediately and while I still struggle with new lines, I CAN carve. And here we are today, carvin' fools, seeking out concrete bowls and parks throughout the region/country/world.

    Must I defend myself from some dude with a name like Skidzilla? Yes. a) So I'm blessed with a kickass metabolism. I may have no problem finding clothes that fit, nut it is impossible to look stylish and smooth when fully padded and lanky. b) It's Alice's fault I'm a BonJovi fan. You put up with what your girlfriend likes, 'cause she's your girlfriend, and if you don't, no Vitamin P for you! She showed me that their music IS STILL cool. (I like the new stuff MUCH better than the 80s.) She's a big fan of everything Jon and Ritchie do, music and acting. (Except for that idiot cameo Sambora did on Still Standing, that was awful.) And I'm sorry, Jon gained big points with me when he showed up in Homegrown, a great flick. (I married Alice not long after that.) and c) Lil' Tony is an ACTION FIGURE! Not a doll you wanker. Not to mention, the pros know who he is, and because of him, you are merely one KevinBacon-step away from TonyHawk. So, in the words of your X-games skateboard... E A T M E ! Again I digress.

    I'm not sure I'd still be hangin' with Steve if he'd mentioned the tattoo back then. That would have been (still is) a bit creepy. On your arm, or your leg, no problem. But your ass? I didn't need to know. Luckily this info was conveyed during the last hurrah as I prepared for an herb-free life with a wake-bake-n-skate... It was absolutely hilarious! Welcome aboard SkidS. Steve has now joined the ranks of people who suck - he's a ramp owner!

    Paul is the only other person who truly believes in AnimalNate. I met OMP through AnimalNate. And oddly enough, I now see more of him then I do of Nate, who was there in 1987, and there when backfoot kickflips, late shuvits and pressure flips came and went. If only we could lure Animal Nate out of hiding. And Dave, Paul is pretty freakin' far from punk, but I get called out?! Nascar fan, with a Jeep that'll climb hills you can barely walk up! And he lives in Lexington - the anti-punk of Kentucky. (Ok, so anywhere except the highlands is anti-punk.) But damn that scrub can throw a slash grind anywhere and with style that most punks will always envy. 'Cretin all the way.

    If there is an "odd(er) duck" of the bunch, it has to be you Jon. And that's ONLY because you're a buckeye. We don't get to see you often enough to pick on you and really bitch about your skating skills. But we've seen you rip at Louisville, and Ollies, and you've traveled with us to NashVegas, resulting in injury, and then hobbled around Louisville ALL DAY for King of the Road. That was hardcore, and that's a 'Cretin.

    I have to throw some props to and Team Geritol. We had the skaters, but we didn't have the "public persona" that they have. I was afraid of sounding lame with the idea of a "team" for our crew. But I eventually threw it out there, and there's no turning back. It was more like, duh, we are a team! What took you so long! The catalyst for me came long before Ollies in December. The Nashville trip when everyone rolled up, I knew we were all serious. Hell, the year before that when Kyle showed in Nashville totally unexpected! Yea, he's a lifer. I am so stoked to have friends as passionate about skating as I am. It's so different as adults. In high school and college it was cool to be doing something no one else did. We were outcasts and didn't care. Now, skating has "mainstreamed" and I'm proud to be a part of it, from the beginning. Skating is cool because we make it cool. OriginalGangsta's if you will. And I'm so very lucky to have a woman that understands my obsession and hinders it in no way at all.

    Here's to good women, good friends, good weather and rippin' sessions!

  • At 7:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I the spirit of "The first time I was a the Louisvile Extreme park" anniversary thing, I'll add these thoughts. What was to become Team Geritol, made their virgin visit north on May 19, 2002. The funny part of this visit was that we witnessed the skating of what eventually morphed to become "The Concretins" I don't remember Nick being there but I know Kyle was there along with a few others that I recognize from the Lil' Tony videos. It's great that four years later we have become this force of old man skaters, living the dreams that we couldn't fullfill back in the seventies and early eighties.

  • At 9:28 AM, Blogger gimpinainteasy said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • At 10:54 AM, Blogger gimpinainteasy said…

    Damn Dave, I think I'm about to shed a tear, haha. I remember seeing a picture of the Louisville park in Transworld I think it was, back in 2002 when it first opened. I could not believe what I was seeing and reading. It was like seeing the Upland Pipeline resurrected in KY (only better) I read things like: FREE, OPEN and LIT 24 HOURS!!! Overall rating 10... I wasn't really skating at the time I read that park review but that was about to change a year later. I went out to Jersey for my friend's wedding and we ended up sessioning FDR in Philly (twice). Driving back to Ohio I was bummed that I probably wouldn't get to skate FDR for a good long while, but then a lightbulb went off as I remembered that Louisville park article I had read and that it was definitely in range and well worth the trip. I ended up going 3 times within two weeks of being back from NJ. A couple times I had worked all day, then drove to Louisville, skated about 4 hours, then drove back home, got a few hours sleep then worked all day again (and it was worth it; although I haven't done that again in a long time haha).

    I met the Skidz first about exactly a year ago now. It was spring break and I came down on a weekday and started talking to Steve (asking him about the tank he was rolling around on haha). He introduced me to his brother Dave and I hit them up to film me rolling into the 8' bowl and dropping in off the extension of the vert ramp which I had just worked the balls up to learn that very day.

    I think it was the next Sunday I came back and ran into Dave and Steve again and also met Nick and Kyle and we all had a great sesssion. I remember Kyle destroying the lip and that I wanted to be able to carve as well as Nick. At some point Nick mentioned about going to the Hawk tour in Nashville and that I was welcome to come along (Damn You!!). We all know what happened there.

    I drove solo to Nashville as I wasn't planning on staying overnight and got there first. I was stoked on the park and skated for a while and wondered if anyone would show. That's when I met Paul as he showed up with Nick. Dave and Kyle showed up shortly afterwards and we were having a really rad session until that fateful railslide that put me out for almost 6 months with a fractured heal.

    It was a blast to hang out with you all at King of the Road in August and even more of a blast to session Ollie's with you all in December as my comeback session. To put it simply, Yeah i like skating with you fuckers too.

    See you tomorrow.

  • At 8:30 PM, Blogger OMP said…

    OK, I won't be near as long winded or exhibit as much literary genius as the rest of you. However, I guess it's my responsibility as a team member to contribute.

    I had gone through a devorce and hadn't skated in years. I had no equipment...not even a board anymore. But I met Dana and on one of our dates we stopped by the (then new) Woodland Skatepark in Lexington (Is this some anti punk land...I don't know). Louisville only had Breslin park at this time.

    Some guy at Woodland told me..."Come on old man, us old farts can still skate". So I went across the street to the Void skateshop and bought a new set up.
    I don't like Woodland now (probably because I'm spoiled), but I owe my re-enterence into the skating world to that little park.
    I started getting better and better each day. Then I found Breslin park in Louisville. This was cool. There was a Half pipe that I believe (correct me if I'm wrong), was made from the old full pipe that used to be down by the river on Rose Island Road. Anybody?
    I came by Breslin a few times and, through Animal Nate, met Nick.
    Louisville decided to go big and they built that monstosity down by the river.
    I'm totally with Skidzilla!
    We are lucky to have it. And you should ride it every chance you get!
    In addition to the wonderful facility we have in the big L, Roadtrips with the Concretins are a blast!
    We've reached that point in our lives that we have the ability to have the fun skate lives we always dreamed of as teenagers.

    So live it up Concretins! Be thankful for what you have and live life to the fullest!

  • At 5:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    God damn dude. I thought I came up with concretins. Fuck. We already have 12 members and like $5000 raised. Check out our Myspace profiles (Concretins Skate Crew [group as well], Confounder Luke, Confounder Jack, and Astro Zombie.
    Hit me up at to talk about consolidation ideas. Because we need more help (skatepark plans for downtown Indianapolis).


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