Plenty of perils await budding skate careers, silent as crocodiles laying in a musky swamp for gold-laden explorers to test their luck short-cutting through the shallows. Prescription pharmaceuticals, mental illness, alcohol, the fairer sex and race cars have claimed more skaters than the police, security and bail bondsmen put together. But none threaten so fiercely as a mystic curse that can sap one’s ollies and tar the immortal soul.
Curses remain poorly understood in general but that is because most people overthink them. Any negative spell cast upon you by a magic user or supernatural being could be considered a curse and they vary in terms of their power. A casual hex could translate to a rolled ankle and premature end to a session whereas a powerful enchantment could erode your mind or kill you. It is best to always assume the potential to be cursed is near at hand to maintain ultimate protection. Below several common ways to get cursed are briefly explored.
Collide with a witch: Witches in many nations are assumed to pose threats only around Halloween when their pagan feasts are celebrated by millions the world over. But what about the off months? It is during these times that skaters need to stay vigilant against the potential to crash into a witch whilst she is going to market or simply hanging around town. Unlike centuries past when birthmarks, non-bleeding freckles and superfluous nipples could be relied upon to identify a witch, nowadays it’s common for people to go around in long coats with gloves and a hood, leaving no way to tell. When Satva Leung jostled a friendly looking Golden Girl in Union Square he may have narrowly escaped punitive magic, only to later…
Anger religious authorities and/or minor dieties: You could run afoul of powerful or empowered beings any number of ways, by skating sacred spots such as houses of worship, sacrificial altars and tombs that may look to the unaware like a ledge or a crusty bank. Similar to dealing with aggressive cops, the best response may be supplication and penance-seeking, and failing that, tearfully begging on one’s knees for forgiveness and mercy. The old saying still applies: An ounce of tearful begging is worth a pound of supernatural terrors and a potentially shorter lifespan.
Cavort with demons and spirits: Much like the cautionary tale of ‘Grizzly Man’ Timothy Treadwell, engaging in extra-normal practices and trafficking in reissued occult materials may seem natural to begnarled thrill-seekers, but doing so plunges one into a risky realm populated by older beings that may regard conjurations and certain dangerous magics with the same dreary disregard a skater may have for spinning a shove-it or focusing a cracked board. Sometimes it’s safer to hold to the human side of the fence, however greener the supernatural grass may appear.
Coming next: How to remove a curse.