Last month’s all-Tokyo Yuto part (already platinum!) put a bright light on one of the most hidden-in-plain-sight skateboard secrets: that skating in one of the world’s greatest skate cities is profoundly hard. (It’s kinda like when your crew does its first-ever L.A. trip and realizes the place isn’t one perfect schoolyard after another, like the videos had lead you to believe.)
Despite the odds stacked against street skating in Japan’s capital, the place continues to produce incredible skaters and videos. And today, we’re happy to present Kenta Okamoto‘s Peace N Love4, the latest in a series of largely nocturnal Tokyo videos that him and his crew have been putting out since 2020.
It’s wild that this thing reached a level of being skated-enough to where the city actually went out of their way to knob the ledge. This photo certainly does the spot the most justice out of all the coverage you’ve seen on it • 📸 Mike Heikkila on the photo, Thomas Dritsas on the board.
Enjoyed “Whistle” a lot — a Washington D.C. video by Eddie Gutierrez that at once feels nostalgic while firmly of the moment. A lot of unfamiliar faces to those outside the D.C. scene, though it’s hard not to wish you knew who some of them were (to the chagrin of the position that homie videos should have titles.) Skate Jawn has an interview with Eddie about the video’s creation as well.
Village Psychic has a part-by-part deep-dive of what it would take to make a sustainable skateboard.
9 hugs, 41 blunts, and 54 slams — 4Ply Mag went ahead and crunched the numbers on Shake Junt’s new video, Shrimp Blunt.
A half hour of Tyshawn loosies!
Pic via @rinyahata_ on IG
Threw the remaining bits of our fall 2019 release on sale in the webstore. Truthfully, it’s mostly beanies and smalls, but there are a few loose other sizes left in there. Figured now was a good time to clear this out as everyone adjusts to the slower pace of life while we wait for this shit to calm down — yes, skate shops are affected. We’ll be good though, just gotta ride it out and be smart. It’s not like we have another choice, yaknow? ♥ Everyone be clean, be safe, be nice and be patient. QS content resumes as usual, because you already know that fashion never sleeps :)
Skate videos used to be so cute and innocent.
All the Streets Are Silent: The Convergence of Hip-Hop and Skateboarding (1987-1997) is coming soon. Think about that Slam interview with Eli Gesner from last week, but wider in scope, and in documentary form. (Timely name, too!)
Legos not Lagos
Tell another visitor the truth about street skating in Tokyo and the response is between an eye-roll and defensive denial.
The truth: Tokyo is [deep breath] …not that good for skateboarding.
Ok, wait! Don’t start yelling! Are there spots? Yeah, there are. Are there tons of incredible skaters from there? Yes, a lot. Is there a vibrant skate scene? Yes, yes, and yes. Does it have quite literally the friendliest, most amazing locals on earth? Good God, a million times yes. Tokyo has incredible skateboarding culture, but when you find yourself a tourist there, you soon realize this previously unfathomable truth: you’re more likely to come home with five expensive jackets you don’t actually need, rather than five tricks you’re happy with for a video.
This past October was one of those great groupthink travel moments where many diverging crews all happened to be in Tokyo at roughly the same time (a la that one January when literally every New York skater was in Barcelona at once.) As we’d cross paths with newcomers, the following interaction became commonplace.
“Have you guys been skating a bunch since you’ve been here?”
“Er, um, not really, no.”
“What do you mean?”
“It’s um…kind of hard to skate here.”
Cue the “You guys are probably just hungover everyday,” or worse, the proverbial “We’re more ‘core’ than you” subtext that assures the denying party will have an easier time being productive in Tokyo than you have.
Until you run into them the next time, and they concede to reality.
Japanese culture is well known for its attention to detail. They seem to master what they pursue, sometimes even surpassing original versions of things indigenous to other places. Why else do Americans fly to Japan, convert dollars to yen, and spend money on superior Japanese versions of traditionally American products? So in hindsight, it shouldn’t have come as a surprise to learn that the most impressive D.I.Y. spot I’ve ever seen — save Burnside, FDR and places that have been around for twenty-plus years — was in Japan.
There is minimal English information about Yume Farm on the internet. It is an actual farm and campsite, serving as a hour-away escape from Tokyo life for anyone willing to make the drive. The skatepark though — …doesn’t make a lot of sense. It’s a smooth island of concrete in the middle of the woods. It sits on a mellow slope and there is no sign that it was ever a building foundation. The only story behind how it came to exist was “three years ago, the park gave it to the skaters and said they could build whatever they want on it.” The people who brought us here had last skated it three months prior, and in that time, the entire tall transition section got built.