Thanks to everyone who came through Uncle Leroy’s Sidewalk Sale yesterday ♥ Will keep you updated on if there’s another one coming up.
“You just got to find nice people you love and hold the fuck onto them.” Grosso’s final episode of Love Letters To Skateboarding is a beautiful salute to the LGBTQ+ skate community.
Not much you haven’t heard by now, but it makes a particular impression with the overhead shots of skateparks in the city that have sat empty for months now: a twelve-minute look at how COVID-19 has affected the skate industry in New York, and in many ways, made the act of street skateboarding come full circle to an approach that existed before the skateparks were built everywhere.
You have no doubt seen the “earthiest” person you used to hook up with (and still follow) suggest that the current pandemic is Mother Nature’s way of “getting back” at us. That one meme said that the earth has “sent us to our rooms to think about what we’ve done.” (She must know that we’ll be back on our bullshit once punishment is over though, right?)
However, before the undoing of all the good publicity that bats have gotten since the first Batman comic was published in 1939, it was squirrels who fired the first warning shots to a specific group of humans: skateboarders.
Everyone has witnessed A.V.E. beat up a street sign, and watched a stress montage or two. But what about the other 25 human emotions? Traditionally speaking, skate videos have not been a place for expressing them.
Sure, friends in the background are allowed to clap and cheer, but a stoicism has always been expected of the person rolling away. It is part of skateboarding’s great contortion of reality: a year spent on a video part is boiled down to three-and-a-half minutes, oh, and dude wasn’t even that hyped on himself when he landed those tricks.
It is the oldest joke ever told — older than the one about martinis and boobs, or the one about American healthcare.
“How many skateboarders does it take to screw in a lightbulb?”
Ha ha ha! “One to do it, one to film it, and another ten to say ‘Yeahhh!'” Ha ha ha!
But what about during a global pandemic? Suddenly, in the era of social distancing, those ten friends plus filmer cease to be C.D.C-compliant.
Scan stolen from Chromeball, obvs.
“In a sense, Jeff Grosso’s contributions to the world aren’t singular but part of an entire point of view — one that could reflect how ridiculous life is while also hugging what he viewed as important tightly in secret. That’s an art. The ability to make things like skateboarding that feel so disposable yet life-changing — tricks that last seconds, yet feel immortal.” — A Loveletter to Jeff Grosso.