The first column on the 100th floor of 1 World Trade Center goes up today, which for the second time in history, makes it the tallest building in New York City, surpassing the Empire State Building by 21 feet.
Zered Bassett video interview on Fred Gall heating up a frozen pizza with a clothing iron, getting held at gunpoint by undercovers for riding mini bikes with Vinnie Ponte, and a variety of other subjects.
Following September 11th, Transworld ran this article asking New York skateboarders about their experiences on that day. It appeared in the February 2002 issue, which means it probably hit newsstands in December of 2001.
Skateboarding is at the bottom of the list in terms of things affected by 9/11, but this is a skateboard site. Every news outlet in the country is doing a “Decade After 9/11” feature, so if you’re looking for something with deep insight, you’ve come to the wrong place. That day was a turning point for skateboarding in the city (as trivial as that is in the grand scheme of things), just as it was such for every facet of life. It’s the reason the T.F. exists (you couldn’t skate anywhere else, so ABC made a safe spot), it’s the reason New York is the gigantic bust it is today (buildings heightened security and never let up), and it’s the reason Lower Manhattan is more residential, thus no longer the skateboard-friendly desert it once was at night.
The months proceeding that day were odd, I don’t think I tried heading downtown until Christmas break. If memory serves right, EST2 came out sometime in October, its New York footage largely being from the past spring and summer. Watching it was a glimpse at the normalcy of skating an area that had become completely inaccessible due to rescue efforts, air hazards, and fire. Strange how even in the context of a meaningless skate video, the world of just a few months ago felt like a much different place.
The article’s layout has been modified to fit this website’s layout. If you prefer to view the full pages, here you go: Page 1, Page 2, Page 3, Page 4.
Big thanks to our good friend Adam Abada for the scans.
It has been a quietly monumental week for New York City skate footage, at least from a historical perspective. While the Skate NYC Apple Juice documentary is quickly working its way over 5,000 YouTube views, several lesser-exposed video clips have been released to accompany it, and they might be even more precious than the doc itself. I have no clue who “skinnypoo” is on Youtube, but he just uploaded a fifteen-minute gem of raw, late-eighties New York footage featuring Harold Hunter, Hamilton Harris, Jamal Simmons, Ryan Hickey, and even Steven Cales, all in their teen years. We’re talking people who already have sparse video appearances throughout their regular skate careers, let alone footage of them skating Tompkins in 1989.
These videos, along with the documentary from earlier in the week, have quickly managed to fill in the aforementioned late-eighties/downtown gap that the Deathbowl doc glossed over. It’s amazing how there is barely any Banks footage throughout the videos, yet plenty of Midtown, World Trade Center, and Tompkins stuff, not to mention a few cutty East Village spots, including the (now blocked-off) manual pad in front of P.S. 19 on First and 11th, and the two-stair curb next to the NYU dorms on 9th Street between Third and Second. You can go two decades hearing about an era of skating that was barely documented outside of a few iconic Shut or Harold Hunter photos, and then out of the blue, someone unloads thirty minutes of never-before-seen footage. The stuff that turns up on YouTube is absolutely amazing…