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

Sunday, September 30, 2007

The Active Lifestyle

Friday, September 28: I wake up in Memphis. I hop a flight to Columbus where, by no coincidence whatsoever, I am greeted by a Hoosier and a Buckeye. Both are Concretins. Both are dumb enough to sign up and pay for self-torture called The Long Distance Road Race (this particular event being held in Akron, Ohio). Both enjoy swanky monikers: Mofo and Gimpy, respectively. But, most importantly, both are ready to skate!

Now, I doubt that there is a single Marathon Training Program that suggests you spend any time at all on a skateboard the day before a Marathon (or Half-Marathon for Gimpy and me). And, it is that kind of closed-minded thinking that allows me to ignore any and all training programs. We are driving a long distance to run a long distance. During that drive we will pass many skateparks. It is our obligation to skate some of them. So, first stop: Powell Skatepark.

We do a U-turn near the park when we see a Tim Horton’s sign and pick up some sustenance: coffee and donuts (all this plus a ham sandwich and muffin for me). The caffeine and sucrose works its magic and we are off to the park. The session is on! Gimpy is on fire in the pool - over the stairs! A feat I cannot complete despite my attempts. Mofo is kickflipping everything in the street course and he gets some extra long tailslides on the three foot quarter. This same quarter refuses me the satisfaction of a decent frontside 5-0; I settle for a couple of minor (read: lame) ones. Satisfaction comes when Gimpy jokingly throws the gauntlet and I, missing the fact that the challenge is a joke, grind over the DeathBox - multiple times.

We pack it in and polish off some Greek food at the slowest empty restaurant known to man. I cannot describe our amusement at a fictional improvisation act by one member of the group, so I won’t try. But, the hilarity of the comedic performance grows over time and it soon becomes the weekend mantra and elicits a laugh every time we reference it. We repeat the theatrics over and over and laugh for the next 150 miles while we drive to Evolution Skatepark in Canton, Ohio.

Evolution is a Team Pain Park. It is has perfect transitions everywhere. In it is the bowl - THEEEEE BOWL! It is a thing of beauty and awe with a 5-foot section that bottle-necks and drops to 11 or 12 feet. Both areas have tight, grindable ends, and there, perched atop the coping in the 5 to 11 foot drop, stands a wooden vert extension mockingly inviting an attempt. I accept the invitation and hear the patented “Mofo Guffaw of Approval” - a sound Mofo makes when a Concretin throws down something he does not expect. I roll away proud of the accomplishment and I repeat it frontside and backside ad naseum. This bowl deserves a day to itself, not a few passing runs while trying to squeak in other parts of the park – it is nothing but f-u-n – which spells ‘gnarly.’

The place sports a Mini with a double spine, - that's right, not one, but two beautiful spines leading to a wall ride to send you back over to home base. (editor’s note: I got a little teary when I noticed that it is affectionately anotated as “Spinezilla” on Concrete Disciples) Mofo kills. He’s taking it easy but he throws a dictionary full of lip-trick combinations. The ramp tries to kill Gimpy delivering a nasty-looking pelvic slam from one of the spines. Our hero survives to tell the tale and drive on. Behind the Mini is a sweet 5 foot half-cylinder that we must one day measure and replicate in Travis’s barn for future training sessions.

Evolution has all of this and two sections we don’t even skate because of a birthday party and the groms that are swarmin the areas like bees in a hive. It is now two hours after we began and we leave feeling like we can do more, so we forward on to Akron for the final skate.

In the car, Kyle attempts to lower our expectations; he knows from a recent skate at Akron that it will pale in comparison to the last sessions. But, we must skate it – we are too close not to skate it! Traffic is terrible and it gets worse as we get closer to the park. Shit! We can’t get in the park! Well, we can - but we will waste at least another hour sitting in high school football traffic and pay $3 to park, so we leave. We leave and Kyle consoles us with examples of the park’s lameness. It doesn’t weigh on us too hard – there is a nagging feeling that the purpose of the trip lies outside of skateboarding, but we just can’t put our finger on it at the moment.

So, a thousand-mile flight for me; hours of driving for everyone; non-stop hilarity; two gnarly, multi-hour skate sessions; an ass-load of poor nutrition: we are now at the end of our day before the torture that is The Long Distance Road Race. I guess we’ve trained hard enough. All we gotta do now is get our one and a half hour of sleep and go run some stupid amount of mileage.

Saturday, September 29, 2007: The race is great and goes without a hitch, but that’s not a story for a skateblog.

Patented Skidzilla Wake-Up Call - Kyle was most enthused!

26.2 Miles! To Quote Travio, "That's just STOOPIT!"

Final Concretin Ohio Skate Score: 2 for 3.

Saturday, September 29, 2007


Did you ever drive through a town, or talk to someone about some random city, like Columbus, Ohio and think, "You know what would be fun? I think I'll bring a couple of friends, and come hang out with a few thousand other people, and just . . . run for 26 miles." Did you ever do that? ME NEITHER! But that is exactly what MoFo, Skidzilla, and Gimpy are doing this morning. Pedestrians on purpose. I don't get it, but it's ok. They can run until they puke (and they will)... I'll sit on the street for a few minutes with a sign of encouragement... or in this case, I'll make a lil' tiny sign and post a picture of it with a little plastic effigy of some famous skater to cheer them on from afar. Run ya bastards! Run!

Had an excellent session this morning with Travio, Tony, and Josh. Brent and Brett also rolled into OUR park. That's right, not another soul was there for a long time. And the weather was perfect, though the sun is still harsh making the corners really dark and blinding you through the flats. Josh and I worked on mini runs most of the day, both of us getting some good sliders. I had the best session I've had in a few weeks and really needed it. STOKED! Hopefully I can carry this through tomorrow and skate with OMP equally as well. Everyone took several turns riding Tony's new wood... (go ahead Dave, this time) He brought a new longboard that was super springy with FAT soft wheels. I was quite surprised how much fun it was cruisin' and really pumpin' around the park flats. Might have to schedule some hill bombing sessions at Iroquois park soon...

We would have all stayed longer, but a busload, yes, literally a schoolbus load of groms rolled up. The crash up derby factor went to a level that none of us wanted to be a part of... Looking forward to another fun session tomorrow. I'm back! Life is good.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Reprinted without permission

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Bowling Green, KY

A quick one cuz I'm whipped after a twelve-hour, rocking good time. A day off, greasy egg biscuits at the Munfordville, DQ, 3 hours of skating for the morning session, Lunch when Tony finally made it, which like it or not, makes him a full-fledge Concretin. So, next time you see him smack his ass, make him do the elephant walk and pass him the secret handshake. Josh, too assuming he is over 30 - I don't think anybody bothered to ask. Anyway, after lunch it was another couple of hours on the crete and in the sun! It sure beat workin!

Highlights: Kyle landing kickflips like a Mofo, Tony and Josh Bonking in. Steve and Travis shredding the clover bowl. I got an alley oop wall-slide that I hope looks half as good on video as it felt on the crete. Dane and Russell making it all look easy.

Nick said somebody needed to grind the over-vert. Dane and I both went down trying and we got the skinned knees to prove it. I gave it a good run, though.

Despite the dehydration a good time was had by all. Tony, Steve, Josh, kyle, Travis, Dane and Russell: Thanks for making my day a lot-o-fun!

Monday, September 17, 2007


Hypothetically speaking, let's just say you see your seven year old son, of moderate bicycling skills, perched at the top of hill at the spot indicated by the red arrow. And, for argument sake, let's say he has his bike with him at said location. Furthermore, suppose you are at the farthest spot away from this hill, peeling off your skate pads and talking with your skatebud, who, best as he can through panic-stricken vocal chords, questions whether your son has previously attempted a descent on this massive hill.

Do you:

a) scream like an idiot at the top of your lungs trying to convince your son that this is a bad idea and he isn't yet up to the challenge?


b) support your son's adventurous nature and pray that all the life-lessons you have given him will cause him to think carefully and change his mind, and, if that fails, that serendipity and the few bike skills he has learned will help him through this successfully?

(Theme from Jeopardy now playing)

If you answered 'b' like I did, you would be very, very wrong.

Gib took a man-sized slam when he hit the concrete pad that is the skatepark at full speed. (Actual car conversation - Me: Did you hit the brakes at all? Gib: No. I didn't really think about it.) The kind of slam that takes skin from your forehead, cheek, chin, shoulder, elbow, knuckles, love-handle, and knee. The kind of slam that breaks the Styrofoam core of your helmet into pieces. The kind of slam that makes your head feel "like whatever is in it is too big to fit."

Careful, Gimpy, there is a competitor for this year's Gnar Award.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Gimpy's Got It...

...Goin' On.
(Same Sunday session as his pics below.) The man was rippin'. It was a fun session. Skidzilla busted out the marathon runs, and OMP chased him for half of one. FS pivot to tail came easy to Dave. Paul was rippin' all his grinds and bs air (see pic below). We all spent alot of time in the deep end, and then Gimpy stepped it up with this...

See... told ya. Indeed defending his Golden Gnar Award. But we ain't been to Arizona yet punk...

So that lit a fire for me to get the new board gripped and ready to ride. This is it... an old school PowellPeralta Ray Barbee Tarot Card Deck NOS... that's right collectors, I'm gonna SKATE IT!

So a Midweek new board session at MoFo's was in order... Skidz, Travio, and Tony also attended to rip the mini ramp... so we thought... Tony took a couple of hard slams right off the bat. Then Skidz... then I body slammed the flat... The ramp gods were upset we had neglected this work of art. We'll be back sooner next time, we swear. Show us mercy! Their brutal appetite apparently satisfied, the ripping began. Travio was so defiant that he never padded up, at all. And he hit all the grinds he wanted, no problem. I was super stoked with the new wood and once I decided to avoid the slam inducing fs slashers, I was able to pull out the old nollies on the wall, good board slides and felt pretty solid on my runs. Skidzilla was gonna learn fs 5-0s if it killed him. 'Bout did... but he nutted up and eventually the slams stopped, completely. One run included three BS 5-0s and two FS... most excellent! Way to go punk! And of course, MoFo was killin' it. Even though he was having "adjustment issues" with his ceramic bearings... yea, whatever... never the same cess slide variation on the TajMaWall, high speed grinds, and switch 270 stall, and switch 360 rock... I'd say he's gettin' used to them...

Work sucks... but skateboarding shows me that life is good... it's always good...

Oh, and then today I find this video, which is the Greatest Ad EVER!!

See, your life is better for reading unless of course you don't skate... and in that case, what are you waiting for?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Shots from last Sunday

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

OMP has been surfin'...

... and this is what he found... Maybe the occassional grom or biker dropping in on ya isn't such a big deal... I wonder if Arizona will be like this... Looks like fun!

Looking forward to a midweek session at MoFo's! New wood! (Shuddup Dave)