Posts Tagged ‘griptape’

Transgenerational Memory Versus the ‘Christmas Complete’

March 25, 2018

At some point along these stretched-out years, a new term clamored onto the deck of our shared cultural lexicon, waited for a lull, put its wheels to the coping and dropped in. ‘The Christmas Complete,’ in the telling of pod-cast hosters and seven-ply salesmen, is springtime purity in product form: That proverbial clean slate, unmarred by bails and makes, all its pop intact — it gets no fresher… all opportunity, and promise. Galvanized identity and anticipation, maybe still in a cardboard CCS or Active box, maybe with a bow on top.

It is a lie. Visions of deftly felt kickflips wither as that sparkling grip holds too eagerly to flat-bottomed soles; the factory-clean grip lines soon sheered jagged after shooting out and careening against curbs. Even the visceral beauty cultivated in perfectly parallel slide marks bordering both trucks can’t hold when inevitably some ledge sits just a little bit too high, or low, clawing the nose and tail with wincing diagonals; worse still, flecked with red or yellow paint. The galactic potential strung through virgin metal, urethane and maple sputters away.

Now this is your board, and everything glorious and depressing that entails. The younger of us can, if they’re cursed to hoard, point to any progression they’re allowed — the hoary and asymmetrical scraping and flaking of a tail tethered to curb drop-ins in time can stand upright and walk with clean(er) horizontal smears, and excessive razortailing can be expected to ease. But with age comes a grim consistency — spread across garage concrete, any decade-deep practitioner will confront grim familiarity on the underbellies of successive deck generations, and the uniform crooked-grind bites into a battered brotherhood of front trucks.

Whether hammered together for an uncomfortable bench or stacked for a cobweb factory in some lesser-traveled basement cul-de-sac, these used-up components, in a sense, still function. The setup leaned against a nearby bedroom wall, the active duty front-liner, is spry, young — the deck just two weeks old. It is middle aged, the wheels and bearings set up six months ago for a road trip and grudgingly protected within a car’s trunk while rain poured down for 36 hours straight. It is elderly, the trucks four years old with enough millimeters of forged ore between the axle and any coping not to sweat replacing, yet. It is ageless, the Phillips-endorsed indentations of its eight one-inch bolts somehow flecked with rust.

But its memory runs back further. When this mounting hardware shook loose from its plastic film all those years ago, they slotted together a month-old deck and two-year-old trucks. The first bearings encircling those trucks were rattling, corroded things, buzzing their last after a short winter, wet spring and hot summer, spinning wheels already a year coned and yellowed. The first board that those wheels moved was short for its duty, broken in only five sessions, and the squeaking trucks on their last legs, bent from frustrated focusing and occasionally fruitful stair-hucking, in those younger days. This universe of components, tagging one another in and out, can trace each push all the way back to the beginning — and further still into another time, if it began cobbled together from another’s castoffs.

The ‘Christmas Complete’ swings a sterilized, eugenics-scented sledgehammer through this grizzled lineage. It is the suit, shirt and tie sold as a rigorously color-coordinated ensemble; it is the prefab condominium block, the garish floral sofa encased in crinkly plastic. Any institutional memory embedded in the cracked deck, pavement-bitten wheels and muddied grip is cleaved away and ended — a new one starts from scratch, another would-be dynasty, unless it’s replaced in another twelve months. It is an act of mercy by enthusiastic Ol’ Yeller shooters, an exercise in the grim fulfillment of web-cart filling and promo code copying-and-pasting, an effort of forced forgetting worthy of those who would pour gravel and dirt into a too-cracked bowl to lay slabs for wood-composite boxes and bolted-down flatcars. It always can be the last one.

Rip Grip

August 14, 2016

toilet.paper.over.tha.top

Dear Readers: Remember the reader who was having an argument with his bro about the proper way to carry his board? He was certain the right way was with the trucks and wheels facing inward, toward his waist. His bro insisted the trucks and wheels should face away from the body. Boil the Ocean sided with his bro for reasons elaborated upon below. The letter nearly didn’t get printed because it seemed so inconsequential. Well, that couldn’t have been more mistaken.

In short order this blogging internet Web site page was bombarded with letters from the four corners — including Samoa, Guadalajara, Athens and Mexico City. You’d have had no idea so many people cared about the ‘right’ way to carry your board. Here’s a sampling of how passions were stirred:

Dear Boilie: Obviously, you come from a wealthy background. The chief reason for carrying your board ‘griptape out’ is to avoid shredding one’s t-shirt, belt, limited edition swishy jacket, and various other undergarments to pieces on the griptape. Maybe this isn’t an issue for ‘silver spooners’ such as yourself — especially in a day when all your favorite ‘small’ board brands float themselves on sales of $35 t-shirts — but the rest of us have to think a little harder. Maybe you should try the same in your next column!
Yours sincerely, Crown Connect

Dear Boilie: Nice try fam. The way to carry your skateboard is under your feet. Get killed.
-Grumps

Dear Boilie: u fucked up again lol no surprise smh but as usual it took you about 2000 words and a bunch of trips to Thesaurus.com i bet haha. hate if u want but actually i mall grab haha no shame in my Game. think about it trucks are designed to fit your hand and u never know when u might have to Swing on some body!!! u wont catch me slippin …. or reading ur stupid ass sight smdh
-Rudie

Dear Boilie: Numerous studies have demonstrated that carrying your board griptape side in throws off the Earth’s rotation and incrementally slows its spin. A more slowly spinning Earth relaxes its gravitational pull on the Moon, letting it slip further and further away. Eventually we’ll lose our Moon, fucking up the tides and crippling natural surf spots. Just another example of your grotesque and bizarre anti-surfing agenda. Thanks a lot asshole.
-Haole Hater

Dear Boilie: I’m actually with you on this one, but for a completely different reason. Since the wheels and bottom of my board sometimes become wet from the oceans of blood that I push through every day, I prefer to carry my board graphics-side out. May the darkness guide you.
-Dan Watson

Dear Boilie: You are right about the way to carry a skateboard and for a very good reason. The skateboard, when cradled in the fingers, pivots around the line of support between the knuckles and the opposite edge of the board; the weight of the trucks and wheels, attached to the *bottom* of the skateboard under traditional configurations, creates imbalance. When carrying the skateboard with the griptape side facing away from the carrier, that imbalance forces the skateboard to “lean” against the carrier’s torso, which can be a source of annoyance, discomfort and any number of dirty streaks across otherwise crisp white Ts. To compensate and hold it straight, the carrier will have to exert more force with his or her fingers and hand. When carried griptape side in, however, the board’s “lean” goes against the interior of the carrier’s forearm, which moves in tandem with the skateboard, leading to less uncomfortable motion and rubbing for both parties. When properly balanced, this method also minimizes any griptape rub against the carrier’s torso and leaves the carrier’s arm freer to move, making it easier to climb stairs, shift grip or run from police.
Your Friendly Physics Prof