Don't know what got into me to criticize the amazing skating in the Viscious Cycle video last night. I think it was mostly sour grapes over the fact that I'll never be able to do any of those tricks. March break starts today and I saw a couple of kids going down the street, taking turns trying to do ollies on a crappy old discount board. An old couple was getting out of their car and making funny faces at them. Nobody likes people who are younger and more agile than you are. I'm pretty sore today from yesterday's outing. Never broken anything that I know of, but I'm imagining that my bones are full of more cracks and fissures than the San Andreas fault line. I think I'm starting to enjoy writing about skatebaording more than actually practicing it. So here's the first in a series of nostalgic looks at skateboard moves that I love to love.
There must be thousands of kids walking around out there who don't even know that their shoes are named after this elegant move. In the change room at the pool last week there was an older guy wearing an Airwalk T-shirt, and I'm almost positive he didn't know the origin of the logo on his chest. I have no idea whether the trick was invented first on a ramp or flatland, but I enjoy the flatland version. It's basically a double decker move: your board is suspened over the ground, and you are suspended over your board. The secret is to do a normal ollie, but jump higher than your deck. Instead of levelling the baord off with your front foot, you grab the nose with your front hand and then kick your legs out in opposite directions.
This trick is largely passe, but kids love to see it done. Ron Allen used to do mean, high speed Airwalks on flat (see, I think, the Streets of Fire video). Rocco did 360 flatland airwalks (or maybe it was Natas-I lost the magazine), but the master of them was, of course, Rodney Mullen. The guy must have invented about 50 different variations on the move, including Frontside 180 AW, AW fingerflips, Saran Wraps and fingerflip variel variations the names of which I have no idea about. He gets the board so its perpendicular to the ground with his legs flung way out straight. What a champ.
My favourite move to bust in this category is the Half Cab AW, but it's kind of hard on the ol' back these days.