All was going well. Several of the office guys had got back into skating, and with a few more friends from Brighton we’d started to visit the nearby skateparks: Cuckfield, Crawley, Shoreham Bowl, and Angerming. Yeah we weren’t the Bones Brigade, but we were having fun cruising around the concrete bowls, and riding the mini ramp transitions. Grinds were being thrown down again, frontside rocks being dished out, and even the odd blunt was landed. Not by me I should add.
True, we weren’t exactly spring chickens (on one trip to Unit One in Rochester we worked out the combined age in the car was 180 years old), but we weren’t the oldest guys in the parks either. I even pitched the older skater story to the Telegraph, based on the idea that the rebirth of skating was creating a Rad Dad phenomenon, where older guys were hitting the skateparks again with their kids.
They commissioned the piece, so I went on the Middle Aged Shred forum to find dads and kids who fitted the bill. My post aroused a fair bit of suspicion but that was understandable, given the bad press skating often gets. In fact given the bad press that action sports in general get. But by me? Never. I ride boards, I know how these sports should be broadcast. I don’t take the piss.
And then a disastrous month. Firstly, Lucozade decided to shoot a skateboarding advert down the very roads some of our crew use to get to the office (meaning from then on, passers by would think we’re buying into a fizzy drinks-based lifestyle. Oh, the shame of it).
And then the Telegraph piece came out. I got a mixed reception from the Middle Aged Shred website forum, with one person even suggesting they should all “just spam the fucker” – ie: me – when the Telegraph editor decided to hold the piece back for a week. Such anger, about a skateboarding article being a week late.
And the worst thing of all? When the article did finally did come out, I had to read it from my hospital bed, because in the intervening week, I hung up on the coping at Crawley skatepark and fractured my hip. The result? This little lot 9below) holding my femur together, and months of physio and rehab till I”m back skating again.
Skateboarding is amazing, but it’s a fickle mistress. And if you’re 30+, get some pads yeah?