December 2010

12.24.2010

I don't want to see that either

Show us on the doll where Naked Grandma touched you, Rod.

Still, it’s gotta be better than running into Naked Grandpa… which, coincidentally, is a very good reason not to go downstairs in the middle of the night to see if Santa came yet.

12.24.2010

We can never break up

broken skateboard2 We can never break up

Soo… who can guess what I want for Christmas this year?

12.23.2010

Under-the-street skating

In the depths of winter, between sub-freezing temperatures, relentless wind and regular precipitation in a number of equally irritating forms, a skateboarder can start to get a little desperate. Desperation can breed creativity as Emerica’s UK team illustrates here, but in New York, this type of creativity can breed a night in central booking. Apparently the police and security guards working in London’s tube are a bit more forgiving than the NYPD.

Despite how much fun this looks like, like-minded rebels over here in the colonies might want to find another indoor location to do their off-season skateboarding. Considering a dude got fucked in the ass with a radio antenna by some cops for smoking weed at a subway stop in Brooklyn a couple years ago, I don’t even want to know what the maximum penalty for skating in the subway would be.

I’ve spotted people skating through subway stations here in New York on several occasions, but it’s always been later at night on the weekends when transit cops are typically too busy dealing with real crime, like muggings, drunk brawls, and idiots playing their ringtones over and over again. Actually, that last one isn’t a real crime, just wishful thinking on my part.

12.23.2010

Holiday from real

Let’s face it, Christmas is upon us. I don’t want to waste too much time commenting on the obvious, or even honoring holidays in general, since historically, tradition has been used as an excuse for all manner of fucked up bullshit. Nonetheless, after you get past the rampant materialism and impassioned religious silliness, Christmas really is just about good feelings, family, friends… and, of course, mulled wine. And that’s the kind of shit I can get behind.

happy holidaze Holiday from real

Basically, Christmas at the Dedleg household is kind of like that Kanye song that goes “Champagne wishes, 30 white bitches, I mean this shit is fucking ridiculous.” And indeed, it is… it is.

12.22.2010

Do you like to do it yourself?

Deluxe has been running its DLXMAS web feature for the entire month of December, posting a new tidbit of skateboarding detritus every day through Christmas. While unveiling the entire Real video, online, for free on Christmas morning would be an incredible payoff for the wait, somehow I think that a new trailer is probably the most we can hope to get in our stockings this year.

Nonetheless, a few days ago they posted a video of the Real team’s recent visit to Oakland’s DIY spot under the bridge, which we’ve previously covered in some detail. That little concrete mecca is looking better all the time, but that might also just be due to the fact that everything sunny and fun looks better when it’s 25 degrees in New York.

Speaking of 25 degrees… in my experience, Deluxe boards tend to take a little more abuse than some other reputable skate brands I’ve experimented with over the years. Whether or not this is true or simply personal preference codified will probably remain a mystery until the end of my skateable days, but what I can say with some certainty is that once temperatures get below freezing, a deck from Deluxe Distribution gets brittle and cracks just as easily as any other. If they could devise some new skateboarding technology that could withstand the bitter extremes of the East Coast and Midwest winters, now that would be almost as good as the Real video is going to be1.

1Hopefully I didn’t curse the whole production right there, but I feel like even the most negative vibes emanating from this corner of the Internet are completely deflected by several minutes of new Dennis Busenitz footage. If you have your doubts about that, maybe watch that web clip again.

12.22.2010

Humbug

Not much to say about this round of photos — I was working with a vague Christmas theme, which basically just means I had that one shot of the lights and decorations on Bedford Ave, and then threw a bunch of random shit up along with it. Hey, I tried to get as much green and red in there as possible, at least. Besides, who really gives a shit — I don’t think anybody actually comes to this website hoping to find some seasonal cheer. I leave that up to the greeting card companies, overplayed Christmas songs, and bargain bin feeding frenzies. So if you want a solid serving of yuletide joy, go get choked up to Love, Actually or something, you big baby.

christmas decorations bedford avenue Humbug

window in elevator door Humbug

traffic light reflection in thick glass Humbug

What’s that? I’m getting coal in my stocking this year, you say? Well, good. I love coal. I like the way it tastes. It’s nature’s chocolate. I mean, aside from… chocolate… which happens to be the real nature’s chocolate.

oscar the grouch Humbug

12.21.2010

Here we go

As a child, I remember being uncontrollably excited at the prospect of a live-action Super Mario Bros movie. This was probably because I wasn’t yet old or smart enough to realize that live-action Super Mario Bros is pretty much the worst idea for a movie ever. Never mind that I was laughably horrible at the game itself, and that the movie bore practically no resemblance to the source material — I was pumped about it. I was an idiot.

However, a re-imagining of Super Mario Bros proves not to be a wholly doomed enterprise. Some seriously talented nerds used the Grand Theft Auto engine to bring everybody’s favorite plumbers up to speed on the grit and grime that the Mushroom Kingdom has been missing out on for all of these years — and I think they calculated the interest.

The Brothers Mario is more or less exactly what you would picture Mario placed in Grand Theft Auto’s world of betrayal and ultra violence to be — and unsurprisingly, that turns out to be a whole lot better than the actual Super Mario Bros movie.

12.21.2010

Strigidae and Tytonidae

Maybe this drawing would have been more timely a couple months ago when that fucking owl movie was everywhere. In fact, the idea had been sitting scribbled in my sketchbook for several months, but I was recently inspired during my Christmas shopping to resurrect it, as it seems owls haven’t lost any popularity despite how dumb all those The Legends of the Guardians ads looked.

Between prints and paintings, chintzy jewelry, and clothing ranging from shirts, to scarves, to hats complete with crocheted beak and those weird ear/tuft things owls have, those mother fuckers were everywhere. America loves owls, it seems. Or at least people who are into arts and crafts and have the bravery/naivete to venture into the Union Square Holiday Overpriced Trinket Bonanza love owls. So I guess maybe just tourists love owls.

whoo gives a shit Strigidae and Tytonidae

Let it be known, I’m okay with owls, but let’s be careful not to dilute their unique brand. I’m just looking out for the owls’ interest here. There are other iconic birds out there, let’s not forget. How about our old friend, the bald eagle, eh? Nothing wrong with having a little pride in America, guys. And of course there’s always the blue-footed booby.

blue footed booby Strigidae and Tytonidae

Blue-footed booby, photo via earthshots.org, obviously

I’m just saying, there are other options out there.

12.20.2010

Kids these days

This is basically just one of those horror movies that’s all about a scary child.

It’s enough to make a grown man cry.

While young Asher here may seem like an anomaly, the truly frightening news is that there are hundreds, maybe more, of these little wunderkinds ripping the fucking shit out of local skate parks across the entire country. A few weeks ago a child about this size, also rocking the full body-armor look, showed up to the McCarren skate zone and was basically killing it. He ollied the stairs in something like three tries, and considering his relative size that’s a pretty big gap. It was inspiring, in a demoralizing kind of way.

12.20.2010

Northern Exposure

As promised (or perhaps threatened), and in continuing celebration of this ridiculously cold season, here are more wintry photos from Chicago’s North Beach.

Sometimes getting a nice shot has less to do with actual skill or experience, and considerably more to do with sheer luck and how quickly you can click the shutter. For example…

seagull over north beach Northern Exposure

lighthouse on pier bacardi bottle on beach Northern Exposure

In warmer months, North Beach is one of the Windy City’s preeminent illegal public drinking spaces. Although, if you said it was peerless, people might get confused icon cool Northern Exposure

tangled cables on pier Northern Exposure

Speaking of peers, sort of… I’m not entirely sure what the story is behind these cables, but they seem to form in a grid within the entire pier — I imagine to strengthen the concrete and keep it from gradually crumbling into the lake. Somehow I think these ones aren’t quite doing their job.

north beach pilings Northern Exposure

keystone light on seaweed Northern Exposure

Mmm-hmm! Just look at that product placement. Advertisers, what are you waiting for? There’s another eager corporate shill right here, waiting for your loving arms.

12.18.2010

Change we can believe in

If you’re anything like most Americans (myself included) you have some trouble keeping up with international news. I’m being generous. In all honesty, you probably ignore it — but that’s okay, because the rest of the world is full of poor people and sadness! We’ve got enough of that to deal with over here in the U-S-of-mother-fucking-America.

As it turns out, Greece has been imploding periodically for the past few years. The chaos caught in this video erupted just last Wednesday — demonstrators were originally protesting the Greek government’s latest austerity measures, when they then decided to protest, uh, harder. Which I guess is usually referred to as “rioting.” But I’m not sure even the text book definition of “rioting” includes punching the former Minister for Development in the head. These guys know how to direct a complaint to their elected officials.