Author Archives: Bob

An older gentleman

This is our cat, Lefty. He was once part of a duo known as Pancho & Lefty, but Lefty met his fate back in 2015, at 7 years of age.

Lefty is now 12. None of our other cats have lived past 7 before, so for the first time we are in senior-cat territory. He’s a good boy. Kept me company during the lockdown. Sleeps with us every night.

He is a  little under the weather. Has the sniffles. Took him to the vet today and he got a shot. Heart and lungs sound good. No signs of any major problem. Antibiotic shot as a precaution.

Pink nose FTW.

I love this cat.

A loss

This is my friend Eli. She died on November 2.

I met Eli at the Paderborn freestyle contest in 2015. She, I, Yoyo, and a few others were in the Masters division. Eli was a long time skater. She competed at the Oceanside contest in the 1970s. How amazing it must have been for her to travel from Belgium to California as a teenager to skate in that contest.

I always enjoyed seeing her at Paderborn, as did everyone else. She was a beam of light.

She will be missed very much.

New Setup

OK, here is that thermocarbon Boom Box all set up. I took the Paris 180 trucks and 60mm 78a Hawgs wheels off the “dancer” style board they were on and put ’em on this. That particular board, the Zenit Judo, is extremely nice, but I think that kind of longboard is just not for me. It is too bouncy, and frankly just to specialized for fancy prancing. Not into it, so I might sell it.

This version of the Boom Box is a lot lighter than the all-wood version I’ve had for a while. Going to keep them both setup.

I have always been a Randal trucks user. When Paris trucks came out I have to admit I was skeptical, and remained so until my friend Eric sent me these Paris V2 180mm trucks. That are damned good, and apparently (according to my friend Tony) the V3 is even better. They turn like butter. Really good. I’m not going to to replace all my Randal trucks, but I might not buy any more either.

I know I talk a lot about longboards that are just stretched regular boards, but I do like this board. There’s a part of me that enjoys the limitations imposed. Creativity can be spurred sometimes by limiting yourself to certain elements. If you are just going to try to ride a longboard like a normal board, what’s the point?

Me, on the all-wood Boom Box, today. Wheeee…look at me go!

Brad

Another longboarding post.

I feel like the death of Brad Edwards as also the death of what I think of as classic longboarding. Gravity was just about the last company to make boards to really rip on. I know they are still around, but since Bream sold the company it just isn’t the same. I can’t think of a single manufacturer of a stretched 40″ – 45″ skateboard. A board you can really ride in a park, ditch, hill, or parking lot.

Clearly if you already have a board, or can find one, you are good for now. I suppose there just isn’t much of a market. A lot of us returned to skating with such boards, but as our skills came back moved to regular sized boards. That’s great, but man, the classic longboard really needs to be available. It has its place.

Anyway, here’s some Brad.

Folks – check your blood pressure, and if you need it, get the medicine. It’s cheap. Even without insurance BP meds are generic and you can get a coupon so 3 month supplies are like $20.

New board on the way

Just quick lunchtime post.

When I get home today my new Bustin Boards thermocarbon Boom Box deck should be here. Not sure when I’m going to set it up. I like my older Boom Box a lot, as I have said numerous times. If this one is a lot lighter though I might just start using it instead.

It’s hoodie weather season, which is much to my liking. Hope to ride this weekend.

During our last podcasts, David Thornton and I decided to do a very short longboarding video clip project. Just shoot 4 or 5 clips each, and he’ll put them together. I think short projects like that are nice. I don’t get bogged down in them. Go out, skate, shoot, and it’s done.

Longboarding Podcast

A couple of years ago my friend David Thornton and I started a longboarding podcast called Frontside 360. The podcast is still there at frontside360.libsyn.com.

We both had a lot of fun with it, but eventually  we felt kind of constrained by the world “longboarding” in the tagline. Then we both got busy, and a pandemic hit, and I have lots of other projects, etc, etc.

Well, I just got a comment on the previous post from a reader who enjoyed that podcast. He is not the first who has contacted me. I’m not sure, but it seems like that podcast was filling a niche with some listeners.

We started that show because both of us missed the days when people rode boards in the 40″+ length range all over — skateparks, ramps, ditches, etc. These days it is hard to find, for example, a board that is 42″ long but shaped like a normal board — just stretched out.

These days, longboarding has become synonymous to some extent with two forms: the so-called “longboard dancing” and downhill. Now, downhill skateboarding is really its own monster. The boards maybe be longer than a typical board, but I would consider those to be downhill boards first and foremost, and longboards second. The Dancing style and the boards associated with it came about in the early 2000s, when Adam Colton made a series of influential videos on homemade longboards, and coined the term “dancing.” Soon Longboard Larry started making a board called the Oldschool Dancer for Adam, and then Adam hooked up with Loaded Boards and put the on the map, and the dancing thing took off. It has evolved to include staggeringly good cross-step footwork and whatnot. Essentially freestyle on a longboard, but including some ghastly step off your board and twirl the board in your hands and jump back on stuff. Obviously that stuff is not my thing. My point, however, is that longboarding is, in general, not the kind of thing you saw in the old Gravity or Sector 9 videos anymore. Not to the great unwashed hoards, anyway.

I was looking at longboard stuff on the interwebs last night. Checking out the “team” from Paris Trucks. No doubt they are all really good, but also they are just a different kind of skater than those from 2001. I am getting older, and they are young, and I have to admit between the age gap and general stylistic differences, I have a hard time relating.

Anyway, for what it’s worth, David and I are recording tonight. New episode on the way.

 

BoomBox Fun

In 2013 or so I bought this board, the Bustin Boards “Boombox”. Don’t bother looking. Discontinued long ago. It is a unique board. The mid section is dropped slightly and has some rocker. It has concave. It has a nose and tail, enough to go down a curb without feeling like you’re going to kill yourself. It is a thick, heavy board. I wish I’d gotten the lighter version with some fiberglass in it, but I didn’t. At any rate, heavy as it is, it is great board.

It’s hard for me to believe It’s been 7 years since I got it. Time is passing way too quickly.

The trucks were sent to me by Michael Bream, who then owned Randal trucks. They were a breast cancer fundraiser/awareness special edition of the great Randal-II 180mm truck. Michael just sent them to me, and I appreciated it. Now I appreciate those pink trucks even more. A lot more.

As noted in a previous post, I’ve got the bug to get my longboard flow going, which is why I’m posting this stuff.

Here are a couple of videos. First one is from 2014. I was just out riding around the public library building. The first part is at my normal freestyle spot, which is really too small to ride a 42″ board, but I did it anyway. I was just getting a feel for the setup, which had different wheels at the time. The second scene is in the parking lot out beside the library, which is a better spot. You can go fast, turn, carve, and not run out of space. I had a good time that evening, and will do so again.

I’ve got a lot of ideas for new lines appropriate to this and other longboards.

The second video is from 2013. Some test shots. Riding around the library, and carving a brick bank along the sidewalk on one side of the building.

And finally, a video I made toward the beginning of the pandemic in 2020. Looking at it, I had already let myself get quite fat from staying too sedentary, eating cinnamon rolls, and drinking root beer. Comfort food.  I’ve lost the fat now, and am back to fighting weight.  I enjoyed the rolls and root beer a lot.

Oh, here’s another I made, just talking about this board.

Kinda missing this…

I’ve had a good time riding in Pandemic Parking lot the last 19 months (or whatever). Just relaxing, “feeling the flow” as they say. I was looking at my seldom-looked-at Flickr account this morning. Yes, I still keep my “Pro” account there.  I have a lot of good images stored there.

Anyway, looking at some of my longboarding pics today, I was thinking of my friend Eric Sanders, who is all about the flow. Eric, it is so good, isn’t it?

Here’s a picture of me just riding my longboard. Frontside carve. Is there any better feeling in skateboarding? The pure simplicity. But man, if you really dig into this feeling, it is deep. Soul-level deep. I think I need to do this a lot more.

longboard carve

Carving around on a longboard. Click for full size.