Skateboarding: v. ride on a skateboard.
Blame Google for any discrepancy or disagreement with these definitions, and skateboarding will be further defined by yours truly, but there may be more than meets the eye when comparing the two on a grander scale.
Skateboarding is and always has been centered around a certain level of rebellion. The skateparks built for skateboarders, when the “sport” became popular enough for such public funding, have all been based on physical elements found in our existing world. First there were pools, which were recreated as bowls in our skateparks. Then there was street skating, imitated (both well and badly) by ledges, manual pads, rails, banks, hubbas and slappy curbs. Skating will always be roughly "against the rules," no matter how categorized and controlled it may become. However, the culture of the skaters themselves is organized in such a self-sustaining way of which others may want to take heed. Although the hierarchies of skateboarding can be very cryptic and often unspoken, they are functionally efficient and sustainable.
Diplomacy can be interpreted as the method of delegating duties to manage opportunity and/or risk, but the word is usually used in the context of international relations. Skateboarders are inherently risk-takers, and those that are active skaters know that they commonly excel at assessing that risk. By the very nature of our activity, we are forced to embrace failure and decide quickly what is worth committing to. The ultimate delegating power, if you will. There is no room for error, yet it is inevitable. The risks we take can ultimately be life-threatening, but we insist on “one more try.” It is just as much something we practice as it is something we learn and teach (granted within a relatively guarded community).
Many will negate this notion, but it is true. Skateboarding is something that comes with risk. It’s a package deal. But with the right attitude, pace and training, the risk becomes manageable and arguably, the most fun part of that deal.
Exploration is an inherent pillar of the culture. And wherever you end up, granted there are fellow skateboarders there in your area, you will find help to keep going and keep growing with your peers.
There are skateboarders in all places of the world. Many more than you might think... Less populated or developed nooks will often have some influence of skateboarding in their communities, whether or not they have sufficient resources. This shows proof of the international influence and narrative of skateboarding. It shows the dedication that skaters have to their craft and fellow humans that seek the same. And they surely aren’t only the delinquents that so many identify them as.
Especially in a time of so much turbulence (economically, socially and environmentally), I look forward to seeing skateboarders make a difference in their greater communities and systems. And during a time of so much hate and disdain for fellow humanity, I’ll be proud to watch skateboarding create even more "homies” that truly make a difference.
- 7Ply Epic