Saturday, January 27, 2007


I was a skateboarder...old school, the class of '77!

I have no idea how it all started, but I do remember that summer, and all of a sudden, where I lived, single roller skates were changing hands for astronomical prices and then being hurried off into a thousand garden sheds for the fabrication of a new fangled skateboard!! My first one was in about October of '77, I bought a skate from a double dealing bastard who showed me the goods, took my cash then fucked off to swap the wheels over before completing the deal...what a shit, I was 11 for gods sake!! Anyway, I cut (hacked) a deck from plywood in my dads shed, and hey presto I was doing wheelies and 360's til the sun set.

Come that Christmas and EVERYONE had a skateboard! They were selling them in all the shops, even in petrol stations, and they even opened a proper skateboard shop in Cardiff. I can remember queues around the corner, and it was where we could go and stare at all those bits and pieces we couldnt afford, Kryptonic wheels, Gull wing trucks...oh the bliss and the pain of it. Those wheels were £30 each and that was then!! My first "real" skateboard in total cost no more than about a tenner.

Then it was the helmet, the elbow pads, the knee pads...the gloves, and then it died! Too expensive I always reckoned, the kids were priced out of the market, I could only afford to buy grip tape with my pocket money! There was no way we could climb to the higher echelons of skateboard fashion, I never even met someone who had those fancy pieces on their board, we were street skaters, couldn't afford to be fashion victims in this scene.

I have searched in vain for a picture of the board I had then, white fibreglass with a red logo, clear piss coloured wheels which I loaded with grease to make them smoother, but I could never make it fast enough. Next thing I picked up a guitar and anything vaguely to do with the great outdoors, exercise and fashion disappeared from the horizon for the remainder of my childhood...and come to think of life!

I think my dad might still have that old board stashed away in the garage, might just drag it out for one last "walk the dog" before I die???...then again maybe some things are best left to the past?

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