The mandatory quiver shot. But let's see what's really going on here...
A long time ago, one skateboard would suffice. A primary leisure tool. A weapon. Ridden into the ground. Sure, I'd be attached to it, it meant the world to me but its material life-span meant little. It would be replaced by another disposable tool, whether I had to sell off old Cd's, save my pocket money or beg for a new one. It was the same with surfboards. One board for all conditions. 1' mush to pitching 8'ers (not common in Wales). No debate on what board to paddle out. Grab and go. Again, surf it into the ground.
Then slowly the boy became a man (very slowly). With a job (eventually) that allowed a bit more financial freedom (kind of). Cool, I can finally get good equipment when I need it. But I need it less. Work and family responsibilities do that to you. Still, its nice to have a board that will help me grovel glide in the slop, a board that I can skate big vert on... blah blah...
What is it? It is a symbol of my highest aspirations and deepest short comings. Let's take a closer look. Right to left.
-Pocket Pistols Lee Ralph, Thunder 149ers, 56mm Spitifre Street Burners. Lee Ralph. A kiwi skate pro who I disliked as a child. Then I began to understand that ugly can be beautiful. A raw attack can be a style of its on. Barefoot roll ins, red beards. This is my 'street' board. An 'adult' street board. 8.25" wide. Let's pretend we can still tre-flip, when all we really want to do is find the closest 6' mini.
-6'4" Ewaliko quad. Not a fish. Not a shortboard. 21.5" wide (shhhh, don't tell). Tired of sinking in the summer slop. No energy to pump my thrusters of yore through marginal surf. This board is my cheater.
-Real Custom Brock shape. A cruiser with 60mm 95a Bullets, attached by loose 139 indys. This is actually a lot more practical than it looks. Races over the rough streets of Portland but it still allows one to bounce off curbs, over train tracks and up Jersey Barriers.
-6'7" North Pacific Quad. Healthy girth. I call this board 'Acceptance.' Acceptance of 30+ year old girth and laziness. But it still allows a healthy turn. If I had to have only one it would be this. Maybe I'd shave it down to 6'6" to feel better about myself. Curren was on a quad on his first J-Bay session... what's that got to do with me?
-8.38" Antihero 149s, 60mm Bones SPFs. The chunky park board for the big stuff. Fancy bearings and retro-fitted Bones bushings... 11' trannies, 1 vert, here we come (occasionally) 10 O' Clock in the pipe (sure, sometime this summer).
-Talk about deepest desires and painful shortcomings. This 6'10" Bryan Bates rounded pin is all that in a nutshell. Oregon winter board that is in almost mint condition because I never surf it. I spend lots of time looking at this one, from December to March, thinking about the lines I'm going to draw on an 8' to 10' face. I spend some time paddling it through tremendous mounds of white water. I even spend a few seconds each winter actually taking off on it, usually into oblivion. Then, I spend even less time racing for the shoulder and very occasional glory, heart racing, eyes about to pop out of sockets, thanking a higher power that I don't believe in.
A higher power that would surely tell me my reliance on these tools to maintain my sanity really is not all that healthy.
See the little girl on the trike up top? She's saying, "Why are you bringing all your boards out like this? Let's go ride bikes, now!!"