Way back when in the #90s, pay phones functioned as communication hubs for the Great American Skate Plaza. At my old local, Shafer Court, you could call the pay phone and, nine times out of ten, a gentleman would answer “Shafer Court — as if it were a place of business! — and tell you if anyone was skating, who was skating, and such. The pay phone across the street from Pulaski and the one (if I recall correctly) by the Embarcadero Carl’s Jr. — same shit. These phones, working in conjunction with pagers, served as communication nodes for the culture.
Of course, as cellular phone technology evolved, this quaint element of skateboarding fell by the wayside. That is, until the advent of Instagram. Specifically, skaters started using this mad futuristic technology to A) document their scene, and B) provide skate nerds the world over with access to a culture that they would have otherwise envisioned solely in the Theatre of the Mind.
@Macbalife is one of the leaders in this field (at press time: 292k followers). We sat down with its creator to gain some insight into one of the most notorious spots on Planet Earth.
Hélas’ multi-“disc” Fellas video has revealed itself to be something of the Wu Tang Forever of European skateboarding in 2019. Yet out of all the places they could’ve put Jesus and Javier’s guest tricks, they rightfully picked Pedro’s part.
“I kind of wonder how I had so much nerve to do some of those graphics.” This is nine months old, but shout to Palomino for just linking it — an hour-long interview with Mark McKee that gives insight into the wild west era of skateboard graphics.
We posed the question above on Facebook, and got a response within three minutes: “Still skating in Barcelona every day. Doesn’t give a shit.”
You know that hypothetical “If you could skate like one person, who would it be?” scenario? Most usually answer with Cardiel or Gino, but a consideration people often forget when formulating their response is how nice it would be to have the flip tricks of someone who skated MACBA every day for over a decade. William Phan is one of those dudes who would do insane lines but still have the flat tricks stand out as the most impressive part. The kickflip up the ledge in the first line of his They Don’t Give a Fuck About Us part is legitimately one of the most memorable moments of the entire video. He even makes 360 frontside flips — a trick otherwise reserved for Battle of the Berrics and Greg Lutzka — look good. Observe below.
Unfortunately for anyone who doesn’t skate MACBA every day, he’s seldom been seen since a part in one of the best Euro videos of all-time, and yes, this is our secondTDGAFAU-inspired post in twelve months. He’s on some European sect of Nike SB, last seen in the bonus section of Nothing but the Truth and the French SB team’s trip to China montage. BUT, thanks to the magic of Facebook (it’s not completely irrelevant yet!), some lesser-seen footage of Phan was brought to light via what looks like the filmer from the TDGAFAU era’s Vimeo page. This includes a clean quality version of his shared part from No Place Like Home (the YouTube upload for it sucks), which might be his only full part outside of the Lordz video. It doesn’t benefit from TDGAFAU‘s level of musicsupervision and has graphics that look like they come from shirts sold at Burkina, but it’s great either way. In the same Vimeo account, you’ll also find two “Firing Line”-style uploads that are incredible.
Add William Phan to the “He’d make a great Manolo Mixtape…” list.