A Short History of New York’s Longest Lines

January 18th, 2018 | 5:00 am | Features & Interviews | 10 Comments

Ricky Oyola, godfather of the east coast “filming a line via just skating random shit on the street”-practice, once expounded on his peak skateboard dream: doing a line through Philadelphia’s then-standing City Hall, into the street, up into the Municipal Services building, back down the stairs, across the street, into Love Park, through Love Park, and end at Wawa.

The closest he got on record was a line from the end of City Hall, through the intersection, and into Love Park in Eastern Exposure 2, but it did establish a lingering precedent for connecting spots. Apart from Ricky and that Joey O’Brien Sabotage 4 line where he starts at Love and ends up in the garage beneath it, spot connecting does not have a rich history in Philadelphia.

Or anywhere, really — because doing a line from one spot, through the street, and to another, is fucking hard. There are variables (people, traffic, pebbles, maybe two sets of security, acts of God), and a pressing anxiety of missing the final trick in an already-long line, which gets amplified by the fact that fifteen other things went right up until that point. As you will soon learn, spot connecting is something most people do for the sake of doing it. In the majority of cases, they stick to their safe tricks.

Like Philadelphia, New York is a dense and layered city. Many of its streets are narrow, and depending on where you are, three or four spots could be across from one another. New York never had a “Big Three,” but it does have three different types of benches on four different street corners, and over the years, skateboarders here have kept their third eyes open and far-sighted.

‘NO ARM & HAMMER IN MY HANNAH MONTANA’

July 16th, 2012 | 9:14 am | Daily News | 10 Comments

Everyone skateboards now! Miley Cyrus is into it! Rihanna skates! This girl skates! Everyone skates! What a fun way to get your cardio in! Sk8 or die, girls! Derek Zoolander |*ngb**rds! When is the male model game of S.K.A.T.E? My money’s on Ted.

12th & A lives. There was an East Village community board meeting this past Thursday to decide its fate, and skateboarding prevailed. It’s open 5-8 P.M. on weekdays, 12-8 P.M. on Saturdays, and unfortunately closed on Sundays. Better than nothing. Hopefully, it will open earlier during late-fall and winter weekdays, since it gets dark at 4:30. (Also, there’s a new ~15-foot-long round flatbar there, and they sawed the legs off the larger picnic table to make it “Cali size.”)

“Gyro” is a montage filmed in New York over the course of two weeks via the same crew that brought you the SF-based Chunder and VHS1K videos.

Some kid wallrid off that giant bottle sculpture near 57th Street on the Westside Highway, which is pretty gnarly. It would make a great photo. Photo here. That trick, and six minutes of other NY/NJ/Philly-based footage in this “Gravity Hammers” clip.

Death Video throwaway clips set to the soothing sounds of 2 Chainz.

The first summer edition “Diamond Days” video (#62) is now online. It utilizes the early frontrunner for “Song of the Summer 2012,” Cash Out’s “Cashing Out” A.K.A. “Yeah, it’s the ‘Racks’ of 2012, but it’s not as good as ‘Racks.'” Grown & Sexy S.O.T.S. early honorable mention: Usher “Climax,” which would’ve been in five skate videos by now if it was by some white girl who moved to Brooklyn from the midwest.

Nate Rojas’ part from Five on That is on YouTube. He 5050s the kinked handrail outside the Tribeca jail skatepark.

“Oh no, I’m completely fine. I do this all the time. Have a nice day.”

The Museum of Modern Art in Finland claims to currently have “the world’s first large scale skatable sculptural installation” on its premises. Stadium did that, like, last year, bro. Though to be fair, the Finnish one is a superior “skateable sculpture” for “normal” people and not Zered Bassett.

SPOT UPDATES: 1) The rail gap and keyhole ledge at CBS are now blocked off by scaffolding. 2) The gas station on 15th & 10th with the flat rails got torn down. Near the end of this clip, Gigliotti does a line there in a controversial hat. (Aren’t there ~six gas stations south of 96th Street? Why the hell are they tearing them down?) 3) Those awful marble windowsill ledges on 4th and Bowery got knobbed.

Quote of the Week:


Straight bling-bling, whip it with an antenna

Ham Sandwiches and Skateboard Wheels

November 1st, 2010 | 2:22 pm | Daily News | 45 Comments

If you’re in the handful of individuals reading this right now with a headache, just out of a sleep marred by alcohol, at least you have a solid, new skateboard video to distract you for seventeen minutes.

Goin’ Ham is a project by the same crew that brought you the Film Me video, released this past summer. There are full parts from Nate Rojas, Ray Macken, and Stephan Martinez. It’s tightly edited, fast-paced, and an all around thorough watch. Right now, it is being downloaded from Vimeo and converted to a .m4v format so it can play off a phone. That hasn’t happened with a new video in a fairly long time. (Well, not since August 22nd.)

A real stand-out part of the video is the immense array of local terrain that it covers. While any bum on wheels flying into New York from Burbank, Europe, or Australia for a few weeks in the summer could have kickflipped the Fifth Avenue Apple Store ledge to street gap, or front crooked the CBS eight-stair rail at this point, given how far skateboarding has come in the past ten years, these kids actually made it happen. It’s easy to drive out of state to find better versions of basically every New York spot, but making do with the whole city and its myriad of pretty, but endlessly flawed skate spots is a whole different story. It’s like 1999 or 2000 all over again (except with much better skateboarding), where tricks go down all over the place, not just within the same routine boundaries that have become guidelines for where to film these past couple years. Lines at CBS in 2010 are something to genuinely be psyched on, and it gives everyone a reason to break out the wax and re-energize some spot that we have been neglecting for years.

As with the also great Film Me video, certain critical corners of the Tompkins bench might write it off for “little kid style,” or other similar deterrents that exist for the aging skateboarder population of New York. The truth is, between this and the last video, there has been less than a year’s span, and every single person’s part is a notch above the last one (and some of them have been visibly affected by growth spurts.) The video goes hard, and the third one will undoubtedly be on a different level. Parts with residual little kid style, but sprinkled with evident motivation, are always more fun to watch than half-assed pursuits at video parts that are filmed in between brunch and happy hour.

Mildly related: If anyone had seen even half of the things that have gone down in the Ziegfeld fountain that we have seen, it would inevitably lead to a second thought before neglecting the potential health risks that reside on the opposite end of any comic endeavor involving contact with its contents.

Update: You can download a .m4v of the video here for iPhones and iPods.

“Hottest in the city and never did a Gangsta Grillz.”

September 25th, 2010 | 10:34 am | Daily News | 1 Comment

Saturday links, etc.

Ari Marcopoulos dropped another book, entitled “Stoopz.” It is hard to tell how much of it is recycled from the previous, partially skate-related release, “Out & About,” which for those who don’t know, is a treasure trove of Kids-era New York skate photography, in addition to a great archive of eighties hip-hop images. Some of the preview images seem recycled, others seem brand new, so it might be right in between. You can check out the quick video of him flipping though the pages here. Either way, if you have the forty bucks to spend, it might be a worthwhile purchase so you can hold on to a piece of the past. And if you haven’t figured it out, the above photo is from the very same book.

While on the topic of still images, Zoo has a pretty good post of Sean Cronan’s photography, with some solid background info write-ups about some images from the State of Mind filming days.

The homie from Boil the Ocean is back on his grind, providing articulate write-ups on the state of skateboard videos and other projects that have been eclipsed by the most handsome skateboarder’s magnum opus.

Remember that post about the Grace Ledge a while back? Well, given that the place is plastered with “Grace Plaza Re-Opening 2011” signs, you can forget about any sort of renovations occurring there that might spare the beloved white ledges.

If you haven’t familiarized yourself with it already, you should be watching this Nate Rojas AKA “Mars Attacks” part from the Film Me video. It’s basically a southern California-esque part done in New York. The best tricks are the ollie through the rail at 101 Park Ave / Concrete Heaven and the tricks on the CBS rail, which still stands as one of the best looking spots on the eastern seaboard. We run an old-fashioned operation over here so we may be alone in that opinion though. Although most people around here abide by the “If you can’t jump up it, don’t jump down it” mantra, this part is good enough to get anyone psyched to huck themselves down a twelve-stair, assuming you’re genuinely capable of doing such an absurd feat.

A Day in the Life of Matthew Mooney. Billed as a “realistic” day in the life of a New York skateboarder, you should take the portion where he gets up at 8 PM with a box of salt.

Quote of the Week:Like, you know how everyone rides Indy’s irregardless of their official truck sponsor? I’m still hoping that Dylan just threw an Analog patch over some Dior jeans, because if he looks that good in bona-fide factory gear, then all hope is truly lost.” – Ted Barrow

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