We began the decade by burning an impossible over a bench into memory — a trick that had, with a few exceptions, largely sat dormant for the better part of twenty years.
A couple kids got into doing pressure flips.
Then, for a minute there, the heelflip became the new
kickflip varial flip.
Tallying every trick that had gone down at every gap became burdensome. The best real estate for a switch tre down D7 in 2015 was the part of a Johnny Wilson clip when the drums began to cut out of a Moodymann song. (Jk, that clip is one of the best things of the past decade. Switch tre is obvs beast too.)
A late-decade #TRENDWATCH thought cab flips would flare up and complicate things again but nah. Switch hardflips had a moment. It was a confusing time to earn a living flipping your board down stuff. Tricks over picnic tables were experiencing a similar lull. Skateboarding was more popular than ever, but all anyone wanted to do was backside bigspins on flat.
While he was inventing 42.7% of modern skating at the very same plaza now undergoing a coverage revival in Supreme videos, it’s hard to know if Henry Sanchez saw a bright future for his 1992 switch inward heelflip down three stairs. Except here we are in 2019 — the ink on 2010s skateboarding is drying fast — and with an emphatic four feet between the landing and the final step, a switch inward heel down ten became the thing we talked about the most this past week.
Tyshawn’s skateboarding cemented itself into our consciousness because he actually did the things that everyone thought “someday…” about: the N.B.D. rail that everyone passed on their way to Banks, that gap that everyone threw pros’ names at whenever they passed it, or the idea that you could skate vertical city trash cans the way that people skate picnic tables out in L.A.
It’s one thing to give the people what they want; you enter another dimension when you give them what they didn’t know they wanted (and now can’t live without.) The media market for flip tricks down well-traversed steps isn’t what it once was, yet the best switch inward heelflip ever done just happened down ten famous stairs, and can safely be counted as one of Candy Land‘s most “what the fuck” moments. It spurred its share of real life convos about…switch inward heels, something I can safely say I never thought I’d have to speak to another person about. (We even tried to outsource an inquiry to the internet with no results.)
But you know what there’s always been a market for? Those rails on Sixth Avenue and 49th. There’s just been a lot of volatility around them, considering there maybe hasn’t been any footage of them since someone lipslid the smaller one in Peep This (or one of those old Zoo videos?) Like the “cherry” rail, people always talked about skating them, except this place was somehow even more of a bust than Police Plaza. The spot was an object of fantasy to the point of it being turned to banks in the New York level of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2.
So much of skateboarding is backstory. A trick will resonate at max efficiency with, if you’re lucky, a few hundred people: the ones who were there, the ones who know the spot, or the ones who had the story of it passed on to them. There are probably five videos up on the Thrasher site today that have crazier rail tricks than a boardslide down 18, but knowing that thousands of people have skated past this one, and got kicked out just for looking at it, makes this boardslide a few pinches more special.
Any pro skateboarder who breaks the double-tap barrier in 2019 and gets the humans talking — is a pro skateboarder doing a good job ♥