Anytime an e-mail from Sweet Waste AKA Black Boy White Boy shows up in the inbox, its contents become a mandatory post. At the onset of the millennium, the residents of Dobbin Block were pioneers in taking trains out to neglected, far off portions of New York City, all for the purpose of discovering spots that don’t look like spots, spots that require massive amounts of quick-crete and repair, or spots that are in the middle of project buildings full of bottle wielding Puerto Rican children. They are also responsible for some of the finest Fourth of July festivities you could possibly find in this city. (“We had one called ‘Fear in Your Enemy’s Eyes’ that costs $500 and is the size of a table.”) Below, is their latest low-def video endeavor featuring more traditional spots than some have come to expect.
Why exactly skatepark designers, when put to task of maximizing on a space in New York City, have opted for throwing in everything throughout a park minus a regular ledge is anyone’s guess. Tribeca, Maloof, and Astoria barely have anything you could call a regular ledge, yet somehow, ledges would be on the top of the list if you ask someone what sort of spot they’d like to have more of in New York. Lenox is our best ledge spot, and five thousand people will come to the T.F. when there’s a new box. (But then again, many of us go to the T.F. for the culture, so the box is hardly an incentive.) By some miracle, McCarren got it right, and appropriately enough, the park is so awful that you could actually consider it to be a legitimate street spot.
The people at Open Road, California Skateparks, Friends of Douglass Greene Park, and the Tony Hawk Foundation were smart enough to figure out that the best thing for New York, a place where twenty people would line up to skate a concrete island into traffic in the back of Union Square, would be to put three ledge-like obstacles in a basketball court, as opposed to spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to build a wedge ramp to a ledge with a Euro gap three feet after it. Now at Douglass Greene Park on 3rd Avenue and Degraw Street in Park Slope, they have a bench with one curved side and another straight side, a low manual pad, and an up-and-down sort of triangle ledge, all on familiar basketball court ground. Take the D, N or R to Union Street, skate north for two blocks, and make a left on Degraw.
Billy claims that the Parks Department still has all the original marble from Red Benches, BAM, etc. in storage. It’d definitely be a step in the right direction if they recycled it into a similar type of project instead of building six other skateparks that get crowded as soon as school gets out.
It’s official — The Wythe Street / KCDC Ledge is done for. The building is blocked off with construction-ish things, and seems to be under a full-scale renovation. It was always harder to skate than it should have been, due to the fact that concrete overflowed above the metal lip, but was still one of the better ledges in the entire borough.
Which brings us to the conspiracy: After Tyler Bledsoe shot da most urban sequence of his career (one that incorporates the entire facade of the building, mind you, so they went out of their way to make it extra “urban”), the building gets mysteriously placed under renovation after years of neglect, sealing the ledge off from those who have spent years being frustrated with the ledge’s five-block distance from the nearest corner store. This seems to be an emerging trend, taken from the guidebooks of California rail assassins, afraid of their painstaking efforts being one-upped by twelve-year-olds deterred by bike chains wrapped around the given rail. Except taken to the next level…presumably something along the lines of a Burton and Transworld collaboration that commissioned a full-on demolition of the building, if not a mere un-urbanization of its exterior, to prevent a one-uppage by a westcoaster looking for some “urban points,” forever solidifying young Tyler’s proven capabilities of skating graffiti covered buildings.
Never need an excuse to post the video below. You can complain about “ledge dancing” all you want if you’re one of those dummies, but you cannot knock this trick. Marc Johnson is the only one that does stuff like this, and he sure as hell doesn’t do it on crummy ledges in Brooklyn with the concrete rising above the metal lip. Youness Amrani from the QS Nike SB montage from the summer, plus some outtakes.