Monday, February 20, 2012

The Curb

The Crew:
 Richard, Cain, and Seb.B
Today I spent a few hours at the Riverslide skate park in the Melbourne CBD.  An excellent park loaded with quarter pipes, boxes, ledges of all sorts, rails, stairs, humps - you name it.  The skaters shredding the park were amazing; one from   the Adidas team alongside other sponsored skaters. They were performing 5-0's down a large steep rail, landing tre flips down sets of stairs, and performing highly technical tricks like kickflip to tailslide to 180 out on ledges. It was veritably a professional demo and I could have spent the entire day watching the gnarly action.

However, the highlight of my day was a curb. Yes, a plain old common curb. A curb similar to the one in my driveway. Now, you may be thinking, 'Why would this meshuganeh (Jewish for crazy) travel to a high quality skate park and focus on a curb?!' Well, it's not just a curb... at least not for the three skaters using it.   
Richard, Seb, and Cain were taking turns performing tricks on the curb that are typically performed on a mini ramp. Now let it be clear that these skaters are not beginners limited to skating tiny objects. I observed Richard bs 180 flip and tre flip down a set of stairs; Cain casually land bs 360 no-complies up a ramp and 360 ollies over a large hip; and Seb, a fearless speed demon, warm up by boardsliding down a handrail and execute a two meter long nose-grab tailslide. 
         Yet, here they were skating a 10cm high curb.
 Now their attitude had a flippant overtone as they imitated many manoeuvres normally performed on larger obstacles and they were having a blast.

The message is obvious: with a little bit of imagination and creativity, combined with a fun attitude, even simple, small, and ordinary objects can become veritable amusement parks and great sources of joy.   

Frankly, I've seen skaters have sessions on ostensibly banal objects before, in fact, many times. But there was something striking about this particular instance: the curb was located immediately outside the skate park, directly under the skate park sign. Viewed from the correct angle, it appears that the sign refers to the curb...and in a sense, it does!

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