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Monday, February 03, 2014

Skateboarding: Figure Skating with a Death Wish

Ex-skateboarder Turned Iron-lung Daredevil

What is skateboarding after all? Isn’t it really just figure skating on a board with four wheels? Instead of wearing cute, sequined suits skateboarders wear baggy pants with their underwear showing and dorky knit hats but the concept is the same. Skateboarders think they’re tough and rebellious because instead of doing their thing on ice which is hard but allows you to slide when you fall, they skate in parking lots and on sidewalks. The first law of physics states that any collision between the human body and asphalt results in damage—sometimes irreparable—to the carcass. Everyone but skateboarders seems to know this innately but as Voltaire pointed out a few years ago, common sense isn’t too common.  

Here is a another rule that skateboarders should adopt immediately: if someone films you breaking half the bones in your body as you attempt to slide down a steel handrail on concrete steps (why would anyone think of doing this?) as soon as they cart you off for medical treatment or an autopsy little Martin Scorsese with the camera has to try the same stunt. I can’t bring myself to watch skateboard accident videos…and aren’t all skate videos about horrific accidents? I also don’t watch snuff flicks which fall into the same category and are illegal to make for obvious reasons. So why don’t they ban videos of terrible skate accidents?

Many of these skate accident videos are basically suicide attempts, or partial suicide attempts (whatever that means), at least from what I’ve seen. I imagine that the dialogue between a skateboarder and his psychiatrist would go something like this. “So, doctor, I’m thinking about launching myself on my board down a long flight of stairs while I try to balance on the steel hand railing.” The doctor takes a few notes and replies, “So, tell me about the feelings of abandonment you have concerning your father. Isn’t there some other activity besides skateboarding that would allow you to act out these feelings of resentment without damaging your body in such a way that you’ll walk with a pronounced limp for the rest of your life? Have you tried figure skating?” The skateboarder calls the doctor a “homo” and runs out of the office without paying.

I’m guessing that there’s already a new sub-culture of mangled ex-skateboarders who now do tricks in their wheelchairs, or hospital beds, or iron lungs. Check on Youtube for the videos.


  1. Ex-skateboarder Turned Iron-lung Daredevil...
    That made me laugh out loud...twice.

  2. The photo is a still from The Big Lebowski if you remember. That made me laugh out loud when his Hispanic cleaning lady said in an accented whisper, "He has health problems."


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