Not exactly sure how current this news item is, as much of the office is off in Europe filming for our future award-winning tour video, 56 Tricks.
Nonetheless, one of our spot scouts (that’s the department responsible for the spots page not being updated for 4+ years) recently passed along visual confirmation of New York’s most famous indoor set of stairs’ rebirth. Disregard our earlier report from February, or at least the finite tone in which it was written.
The *new* Indoor Ten doesn’t have a sleek, white marble surface like it’s predecessor. It’s made up of the the mundane and bleak granite found in nearly every midtown Manhattan train station. It’s more narrow, with less runway. It’s actually probably maybe bigger — going fast and rolling off it may no longer be an option like it was during its earlier incarnation.
It is, however, an indoor set of stairs. It’s loud. It’s crowded. It’s inside a subway station. You will get kicked out. You will only get two tries if you’re lucky. You will get chased for skating it. Maybe if fortune is truly on your side, you’ll get arrested for skating a set of ten stairs. It’s everything we could ever want.
It’s just great to have it back where it belongs.
(The only question that remains is if the A.B.D. scroll has been refreshed…e.g. the last high-profile trick at Indoor Ten 1.0 was Tyshawn’s switch backside flip in “cherry” — is switch backside flip off limits, or do skateboarding’s data-mining statisticians approach this development as an entirely new set of stairs?)
With spring set to appear on a daily basis somewhere in the next four months, it was only natural that unknown forces would look kindly upon the T.F. After a mysterious origin at 12th & A this past weekend, a two-foot-wide wooden triangle structure made its way within the linked fences of Tompkins Square Park.
Skateboarding is entering year three of its fascination with triangles, so the expected popularity of said obstacle cannot be understated. An eminent men’s magazine even listed one of the major triangle-centric fashion houses of today among QS reader’s favorite aesthetic directions — though they later forfeit any purported credibility with the inclusion of earth-toned cargoes (???) and éS shoes (????????) Just imagine wearing triangles while skating triangles. Shit is gonna get weird man.
Our moles inside the Parks Department have informed us that the green bandits are only interested in confiscating objects that are “good.” If it resembles garbage, it’s going to have a long life at the T.F. If you put hard work and money into building a box, you can bet that it won’t make it til the next morning. This thing is just enough of a piece of shit that it should enjoy many spring months of wallie experimentation. Hell, that green bookcase corner from 2013 lasted over a month until it dilapidated into a single piece of wood propped up by a brick.
And look, Tony, dude, I’m sorry I linked that soundbyte of Tas Pappas telling you to fuck off on Monday.
As per an announcement several days ago, Jersey City was awarded a $25K grant from the Tony Hawk Foundation, which facilitates the construction of a public skatepark in a zone with “at-risk youth.” The park will be a part of the Berry Lane Park development off Communipaw Avenue. Berry Lane is less than a ten-minute skate away from the current site of the Jersey City junk spot, and near the Garfield Avenue Light Rail station. Considering most sections of the neighborhood currently look like this, it’s quite an upgrade. Can’t tell where inside the park the skatepark is though.
We’ll leave the pontificating re: skateparks “homogenizing style” or whatever to the Slap boards and interviews about “the state of skateboarding.” We’ve eased up on skatepark-averse news coverage these past five years. Jersey City isn’t a prime example of forward-thinking recreational space, so prior to this week, this looked like it would’ve been in endless limbo. Skaters in Jersey City have subsided on the Rink and their D.I.Y. spot for the past half-decade, without much else to skate hassle-free. This is the first concrete park in a major city in New Jersey (edit: disregard that, Elizabeth had a concrete park for a few years); it’s absurd it has taken this long.
This is a win-win for everyone. The park is slated to open by the end of 2015. Much respect to all the people who lobbied for the park and made it happen :)
Though Indoor Ten has been under construction for over a year, the MTA recently revealed the new entrance to the F train on 42nd Street. It does not look like the much beloved midtown institution will remain with us.
It was 2002. Flip’s Sorry video had just come out. When there was a finite number of skate videos, every nuance became etched in your pre-adolescent brain. You spent time with videos, memorized them, and mimicked them. It wasn’t only the tricks the pros did, or the occasional impression of “Fred’s gay outfit.” Something as mundane as an indoor set of stairs became something to aspire to. Sorry had a few sets of [presumably foreign] indoor stairs.
Two years earlier, Brian Wenning and Anthony Pappalardo revolutionized the way we saw big, fancy steel trashcans — not the wire ones, but ones like they had at Love. Pushing a can against a ledge taller than it validated skating a gap that wasn’t a gap.
And so, the Beer Bar green can gap was born: a five-foot tall ledge with a four-and-a-half foot tall can after it. All you had to do is not go slow, roll off the end, take the impact, and you’d make it. Beer Bar became the new hub for thirteen-year-old skateboarders in New York City. Learned a new trick? “Try it over the can.” There was only one can that mattered.
It’s a metal curb city. It’s a garbage city. It’s a cellar door city. It’s an expensive city. It’s a party city. It’s a fashionable city. But it is not, by any means, a city where you will have an easy time finding a ledge to do even a foot-long tailslide on.
We may live in a city with the highest concentration of beautiful women, but the trade-off is that we are stuck with the ugliest ledges. Ledge skating in New York is the equivalent of constantly having to go home with a two. Sure, there are plenty of tens in the Financial District, except they’ll never lend you enough time to get to know them and make some moves.
As we reach the coldest depths of winter, let’s forget skating’s fun aspects. You’ll miss skateboarding less when you are forced to remember that it could also be terrible. Ride Channel may have oversaturated the list game (we only run maybe1.333listsa yearanyway), but this is important: here are the ten worst ledges in New York that are skated by humans with presumably functional brains.