Thanks for Quitting You Old Asshole! Just More Rolling for Me!

30 06 2009

For a while I have been thinking of a proper follow-up article to the flurry of controversial articles I made. It isn’t that I have run out of ideas to talk about, far from it. I just have so many ideas that I have to get them sorted out. Then, suddenly, I read an amazing interview with Rob G from the Shocked blog (one of the better blading blogs in the internet in my opinion, check it out at http://stabyourselfintheface.com) and it inspired me to write about a topic that is ever present in my life. Blading when you get older.

I am not going to lie, this shit gets harder, both physically and mentally, as you get older. I remember when I first started rolling I could take a slam like it was nothing and just keep on going. No morning after pain, no muscle pulls, and no stretching or Advil needed. Fast forward almost a decade later, and it isn’t like that anymore. I am a bag of shit. My knees are bad, my legs are all scarred up and have nerve damage, and I am questioning my ability to reproduce from the numerous times I racked myself (which is good in some situations). As I continue to grow older and rollerblade I have learned one valuable lesson, I can’t treat my body like it is still fifteen. Now I know you younger rollers hear that all the time, and when I was young I was like “fuck these old bags of shit, I will never end up like that,” but trust me, rollerblading is as good for your body as cigarettes for cancer patients.* Our whole lifestyle is based on the premise that eventually you are going to get hurt (it’s just a question of how badly). That’s one of its twisted appeals. If everyone could do it why the fuck would I even care about it? It would have as much of an appeal to me as “extreme” breathing (which I am sure is more popular than rollerblading in some corner of the globe). However, I am paying the price for this adrenaline addiction. Sometimes I want to rollerblade but I am physically incapable of doing so, whether it is from extreme soreness, pain, sprains, or bad muscle pulls. These injuries fuck with your head. Even when I am at 100% I still question doing some things on the premise of rehashing an old injury. My mind didn’t play these games with me when I was younger. Getting older sucks, but does this stop me from rollerblading? No.

The physical pain and the mental second guessing isn’t as much as a problem as the responsibilities that come with being older and trying to rollerblade. I recently picked up a “real job” and got slapped in the face with multiple responsibilities. I even found myself setting my own curfews, turning down sex for sleep at times, and refraining from drinking (if you told my sixteen year old self this he would degrade me, kick me in the balls, and then proceed to emasculate me). I find that these responsibilities make rollerblading harder. I can no longer get up at 12PM and blade until 2AM during the week, I can no longer pick up my skates anytime during the day and catch a skate. I also find myself coming home tired from work, and not wanting to do anything but sleep. No doubt, the responsibilities that come with being older makes wanting to rollerblade, or finding time to rollerblade, harder. Does this stop me? No.

Have people used the excuses provided above to not rollerblade as much, or stop rollerblading all together? Yes. Those people are bitches in the truest sense of the word.

I am tired of hearing older rollers that quit (or come out twice a year) recite the same bullshit lines, “It got too hard, man,” “I didn’t have the time,” “My body couldn’t take it.” Sometimes. SOMETIMES, these statements hold true, but for the most part, when I hear people say them, all I hear is “Nick, I became a bitch and rollerblading crushed me under its greatness.” Then I begin to tune these people out as if they were adults in a Charlie Brown cartoon. I think these people were looking for an excuse to quit (or barely skate) anyway, getting older just provided them with everything they needed. If you truly love doing something you stick with it, it is as simple as that. Sure it gets harder to blade as you get older, but it doesn’t mean you quit, you just learn to adapt. This is where Rob G comes in. I don’t know Rob G’s exact age, but I know he is over 26 years old, and not only has he stuck with rollerblading as he has gotten older, he has gotten better! Now you’re saying, “Nick, you’re a dumb, Rob G is a sponsored pro, and all he has ever done is rollerblade.” And to those people I say, fuck you. Rob G wasn’t always sponsored, for a while, between skatepile and fiziks going out of business Rob G had barely any sponsors (and definitely none of the “big hitters” like boot companies). Also, sponsorship in rollerblading is about as useful as covering everyday expenses with monopoly money (seriously, I think extreme ironing gets more money, which is a shame). Rob G is the epitome of learning to adapt as you get older, for me at least (there are others out there as well, Jon Julio being the most immediate name coming to my mind). I literally become inspired when I watch Rob G skate, and it isn’t just his skating that inspires me. He has inspired me to treat my body better, and realize how crucial it becomes to do so as I get older. He has also inspired me to look at rollerblading differently, as more of a long-term activity rather than just something I do in the moment. I now find myself adjusting my diet, exercising more to stay in shape, stretching more, and warming up a fair amount before trying my hardest tricks right off the bat. I have even found an interest in yoga, you might think that’s “gay,” but I think it’s cool and challenging. I am not just focusing on the physical either. When I come home from a hard day at work when the boss was on my ass all day, and all I want to do is sleep, I tell myself, “stop being bitch, and go out there and do what you love.” One of my greatest fears is becoming one of these lethargic ex-rollerbladers who reminisce about the glory days and stops experiencing them. I want rolling to be a constant in my life, unlike those gelatinous dumb fucks.

So for all those who quit, all I can say is, “thank you.” You helped rid rolling of fake bitches whose natural instinct is to give up when things get hard. We didn’t need you to begin with, but if you really want to help out rolling even more, please buy some more products and let it rot in your basement/garage (or you know, give it to me so it can get some use). To me you’re just as good as those people who carry around skateboard that have never seen any use. You’re fake. You never loved rolling. Also, thank you, because since you left, there is just that much more rolling out there for me and my friends to enjoy.**

***SIDE NOTE: Be sure to check out Rob G’s blog at http://controlledaccidents.wordpress.com it is definitely a good read that provides a lot of insight.

_______________________________________________________________________________________

*I say rollerblading is bad for our bodies just from the mere fact that it involves getting injured at some point. However, I am aware of the great workout rollerblading provides when you are not getting hurt.

**I am aware rolling isn’t finite for all you smart asses out there.

-Nick. D

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29 responses

1 07 2009
» Blading when you get older | Rollernews.com

[…] Check this interesting article on CanadianRoll. […]

5 07 2009
K@rL!To$

I’m a 27 year old accountant from Puerto Rico, who right now is finishing his Masters. Rollerblading is my lifestyle since back when I started doing it in High School back in the day in 99’. Is true that many people quit skating for lots of reasons but I must agree with Nick that sometimes those reasons are bullshit. Wife, responsibilities, kids must be a lot of shit to handle but if you love sometime like rollerblading then you must design your life to have time to do what you love. You don’t have to skate the crazy shit the Pro’s are skating. I skate normal spots for like normal people. I’m not Abdiel Colberg and perhaps I will never achieve that level of skating but I can do an Acid Soul almost anywhere. I don’t do 450’s or any of the new shit that the new kids are doing these days but I really enjoy the things I can do on blades. I try to get better but at my own pace without fucking myself up. I had the opportunity to have Rob G stay in my house for a week and that man is an example of what people 25 plus can do. I had the privilege to see that man kill 2 of my local skate parks in Aguadilla like it was nothing and with better level of skating than everybody, no matter what age. Rob G produces art when he skates. If you are older than 25 motivate yourself and keep blading because if I can, U can. Check my YouTube profile and see what a 27 year old accountant can do with some blades strapped at his feet:

http://www.youtube.com/RolliN4MoneY

I’m old and I skate y esa la que hay. Saludos a to’ los viejos que patinan como yo. JaJaJa. Cuídense y sigan patinando. No se quiten.

Nick props from Puerto Rico man and keep writing good articles…

Roll4Life

1 07 2009
willem zandvliet the netherlands

hi, i don´t know about you but i´m 27 and i´ve been skating for over 12 years now.. my girl (28) skating for 5.. i skate for skateland (indoor park) and a small store rollerwave, but even without i would still roll as much as possible. what comes down to almost every day becouse of my ´not working more than 5 hours a week´, and i just love it!!! so keep rolling bitches especially those mother fu.kers who are good, but are lazy 2… don´t commit to a full time job if you want to roll and have fun!! thats what the lifestyle is about remember? having no worries and just skate your ass off litteraly..
iff you want to do that in holland mail me…
peace

1 07 2009
willem zandvliet the netherlands

oh i forgot to say big! up to rob g (from everywhere) for showing us how it´s done when people say we are to old… come stay in my crib and skate with us please? insert puppy eyes here…

1 07 2009
Chrisedmo

Nice… Im 26 and I have been rollerblading since 1994.. I stopped for about 3 years for more or less the same “excuses” listed above, however about a year ago now, i started back up again, and quickly learned that i was no longer 15!! Still loving it and you’re right – you really have to adapt the way you skate – I would like to do big ass gaps but my body couldnt take it – so now i work on like fakie runs around the park and unusual, overlooked things in skating and its good to see topics like these and figures like Rob G still pushing it. I just wish Latimer would put his boots back on.

1 07 2009
-

very good article … i’m into rolling since 1998 and im 25 years old now.

ive seen 29 of 30 people from the good old days quit rollerblading also for the same “excuses” listed above.

the fact that everybody of your friends around you quit rollerblading bit by bit is also one reason that makes it hard to keep on rolling.
but yes, my body and brain isn’t the same like when i was 15 years old.
thats another fact why its getting harder and harder.

the last 3 years, (most of it i was rolling on my own) i learned that its better for me/mybody to set the most value on style, lines creativity and STYLE.
i’ve also learned the importance of a mp3 player to enhance my motivation over the last 3 years.
– AND STRETCHING BEFORE AND AFTER A SESSION !!!

i dont know how long im rolling into the future but im sure it will be always a part of me.

1 07 2009
-

and YES latimer should be back on skates !!!

1 07 2009
ali

great piece Nick!
Started Yoga myself in order to maintain flexibility of my 28 year old body!

Being older doesn’t imply that one has to quit rollerblading, you just have to care of your body!

1 07 2009
dante

very well put. i was a competitive speed skater for 30 plus years. at the end, continuing killed me. i wanted to continue but i had an injury that didnt allow me to continue. i started aggressive skating at 32 years old. i didnt have the luxury of the young body to learn this sport. im 42 now and still going strong. sure my age limits me a bit. what it really is, my brain hinders me. i know what pain is , the consequences, responsibilities, etc. pretty much ( if you are in shape) your body will keep going if your mind tells you. its hard skating with people a third my age or half my age. i continue because skating is in my blood. so many people waste the talents they were given. i skate what i can skate, and my mind tells my body what it cant do. i still push myself, but i dont go crazy. i love rolling, and so i grind on. great articles!

1 07 2009
Oli Benet

Im going through a lot of the same stuff really, and im 28 soon, and im trying to look after myself better, drink less, stretch more, go jogging, etc etc. So i understand and agree with a lot of the article.

However all the stuff about people quitting

— “So for all those who quit, all I can say is, “thank you.” You helped rid rolling of fake bitches whose natural instinct is to give up when things get hard. We didn’t need you to begin with”–

Is just unnecessary and I totally disagree with it in its entirety. Theres a hell of a lot to do in life and people wanting to achieve something new or experience new sports or adventures are not people “whos natural instinct is to give up when things get hard” Sure, it would be hard for me to do most of the tricks i could do in 2002, im not giving up though and neither am i going to try them again. I have been skating since i was 8 years old, and if i was to give up now, which i am not, would i be a fake bitch after 20 years on wheels?

I have a lot of friends who have quit skating, and it used to annoy me, but then i realised, its just skating. These people have other things they want to pursue, and they are still great friends, and are happy. Who are we to be telling them they are fake bitches and insulting them because they don’t want to destroy their bodies any more, or they have other priorities?

Rollerblading is my life, but i hate the “nazi only rollerbladers rule and know” ideas. Im just as much into music as i am rollerblading, and even that annoys people.

Its a big world out there.

Just discussion, no beef!

1 07 2009
Benjamin

Greetings from Germany!
I skated for 15 Years now and I’m turning 28 this year. You write some good thinkings, but I have to admit, I didn’t like you insulting all the people who stopped. Like Oli said, Skating can be Life, but Life is often more than skating, and: its ok!
What I liked most is that you tried to show, that skating can be more than doing badass-tricks and stuff, there are much more possibilities in our sport that dont depend on a young body and mind!

1 07 2009
4114N

I’m 28…13 skating…
this article (fuck!) makes me fill like an addicted… i agree with most part of all, and the commentaries… i’m adapting myself to keep on… stretching more, trying to sleep better, drinking less(but better), and all this stuff… and this just makes me a better person, for everything… i mean… body and mind working together. And i see my closers friends who don’t skate, or have stopped, just getting fat and older…and i’m happy with who i became because this sport.
This is my addiction, this is my “escape valve” for my complex adult life.

1 07 2009
shahiem

I see that rolling does get harder as you age so I’ve started taking care of my body now even though I’m just 17. I make sure I stretch before every session and eat right all the time. Even if it’s just a practice rail session I still make sure I stretch and warm up before I start trying anything.

1 07 2009
millet

I agree with Oli. I’m 26, and have learned to take care of myself better so I can continue skating. However, if I’m 35 and have more major injuries, my choice to ride a motorcyle, play drums, and retain the ability to play sports with my kids one day doesn’t take away from my love of this sport. I’ve loved rolling for over 10 years and will continue even when I stop throwing tricks.

1 07 2009
Stuart

Cudos for a great article Nick!
I’m 25 very soon to be 26, been rolling for 14 years now!
To say the least I’ve wrecked my body in the worst possible ways through my years of skating, but nothing, NOTHING, can keep me off rolling!
Definitely the hardest thing now is trying to skate hard while still being careful not to hurt myself – my knees have a tendancy to fuck out on a whim, which doesn’t help.
But nonetheless I grow to love skating more every day (still)!

Big ups to all the ‘older’ rollers out there still loving it and representing. And a huge big up to Rob G and other older icons out there for the constant inspiration.

1 07 2009
Kevin Dowling

Thank you for this, I needed to feel connected with people my age that still shred, sometimes I feel like I am the Last of the Mohicans. Props to all you guys, we should set up some sort of 25+ retreat where we all get together and shred.

1 07 2009
Jamie Murrett

At nearly 28 years old with responsibilities of a mortgage, a family, and working as a business owner, database marketing manager and a marketing consultant I can relate to a lot of what you said. Despite the added responsibilities and increased susceptibility to injuries that we are cursed with as we age, I’ve continued to be passionate about rollerblading for 14+ years. It’s all about making the time to do what you love and making sure you take care of yourself well enough to continue doing it.

Whether people who I have grown up with or once admired quit skating due to whatever their reasons might be does not bother me though. For me skating is personal, I do it for my own enjoyment and as my escape from the everyday stress and responsibilities that come with life on life’s terms. Ironically, despite the danger involved and damage it has done to my body, rollerblading has been my fountain of youth and I know will always be able to find a new friend in anyone who shares these feelings.

Last night I decided to go out to skate because a good friend of mine is helping me make a new section and we almost have enough footage to start editing. Despite being extremely sore from a full day of skating and filming over the weekend I forced myself to go out and try to get some more clips because I have been overly anxious to see the final product. Of course I should have listened to my sore body because as soon as I put my skates on I fell which resulted in a couple staples in my head. I took my skates off a little while later and decided to call it a night. Driving home I told myself that I need to do a better job of listening to my body when it’s telling me not to go skating if I want to continue doing this in the future. Besides being frustrated from waiting at the clinic until 2:00am and being a little embarrassed coming into work this morning with some messy, blood-soaked, greasy looking hair I am grateful to be ok and hopeful that with a little luck nothing will ever stop me from doing what I love.

Anyways, I just wanted to say thank you for the article. Hopefully I’ll be skating again next week and should have a new section online in the next couple weeks. I am proud to say this new section will be one of my biggest personal accomplishments and I can’t wait to share it with everyone who loves rollerblading as much as I do.

1 07 2009
karlo

Looks like I have got it backwards.
I am 38!!!!! and I want to try this, getting the skates soon!!
Is there any hope for me???!!!!

1 07 2009
canadianroll

Karlo, there is definitely hope. Rollerblading is amazing, and you will meet the best people from it. Plus you haven’t suffered the injuries that many rollers do early in their careers, so it is almost like starting out fresh.

1 07 2009
Garett

Interesting points Nick. I agree with you in some respects. But I don’t think getting enraged or bitter over someone dropping out of the blade scene is the right stance. I think you have to be in that situation to truly understand it. I myself fell out of love with rollerblading for almost a year, surfing became my new bed buddy. It didn’t hurt to fall, I was getting in better shape, and staying healthy, yet still getting that satisfaction that rollerblading/snowboarding gave me. Skating stopped being fun, I was reminded of how much better I “used” to be, and honestly who wants to continue something if it stops being fun? It felt like more of an obligation (to rollerblading as a whole) to skate than something I really wanted to be doing. It wasn’t a matter of making excuses, it was plain and simple, it stopped being enjoyable, and just became frustrating.

Now a year later I have fallen back in love, gotten my game back, gained new tricks, and it’s fun all over again. I’m sure people said the same thing about me “he’s a bitch, good thanks for quitting!” like a bitter ex girlfriend you’ve cheated on. So instead of getting bitter about someone who quit, take it with a grain of salt, maybe it just stopped being enjoyable, maybe they fell out of love, maybe it’s just a stage and they will eventually come back. Everyone has their reasons, and if you don’t enjoy it anymore, you shouldn’t be doing it, I don’t think that constitutes someone being a bitch, that’s them accepting what has happened and taking a step back to reevaluate themselves. Just my opinion from the other side.

1 07 2009
aşk şiirleri

Thanks good article

1 07 2009
andy

much love to you sir….i started in 97
in 06 i drove an hour and a half up to octona skatehop and left my prized al dolega salomon specials at the shop. said good bye to skating and drove home..

now its 3 years later and im glad i did it. ive found other hobbies, grown as a person and taken on tasks that skating could not offer.. and after all the trouble i went through to get rid of skating, i find myself geeking out online on rollerblogs, supporting the companies i appreciate and building whatever skate shit i want to stay active even if its skating my prail alone. perhaps its the overall grasp on my dreamy adolesence that skating had, or maybe it was the thrill being able to travel the counrty during the peaked core years of skating (imyta, early bittercolds and superhicks, motor city showdown, the detour etc…) but regardless of my lack of caring about the lifestyle, the trends and the ethnocentrism these days, when i think of fun, i get my skates..when i wanna be entertained, i watch a skate flick…. once skating was a art and a passion, now its just good cardio and good ol fashond fun.. ive definetly tried to quit skating but it seems that skating just isnt willing to quit me… i feel the same way about my smoking habit but thats a horse of a different color…

1 07 2009
canadianroll

To all those he believe I was a little to militant, I must say, I totally agree. I took a harsh stance, but I think that is because I love rolling so much and have seen far too many people come and go. Having said that, I understand where everyone is coming from. Like most of you I have other hobbies, it is just that rollerblading has been my main for for quite some time now.

I do think people who quit and tell me “I used to rollerblade” are still bitches though. There is no reason to drop it completely. I don’t necessarily think you have to rollerblade, but like “andy” pointed out he still participated be either staying involved, buying merchandise etc etc…

I think Oli Bennet and Garret raise good points, which makes sense because I respect both of them very much. I remember Garret’s surfing and it brought him a lot of joy, which I agree with. However, I don’t think you ever stopped loving blading. For Oli, I totally understand where you are coming from. You may be right, I may still be in a bitter stage where watching people drop out of rollerblading still annoys me, and chances are I will move passed this phase, but for right now I am just writing down my feelings for people to read.

What I do love is the discussion that this whole article brought along. The different points of view, the different stories. Everything. It was all great to read in the comments section. I value everyone that posted something up, especially people who offered valid counter points to my argument. Looking at things from a different perspective always helps to bring clarity.

2 07 2009
karlo

Thanks for the kind words,
was going to drop the whole idea due to finding out how young these aggressive skaters are.
Well wish me luck and must admit, you people have guts!!!!!

2 07 2009
Razors

Im 20, thats not even old but with other life commitments I struggle to find anywhere near the amount of time I did when I was 12 to Rollerblade.

4 07 2009
kunle

true that!
i’m only 14 and i know i have alot of glory years ahead, but although i would like to get really good, i often think that the reason why i started out was purely for the fun and thrill so i will not quit, only slow down when i know i need to, cheers nick.

4 07 2009
Azur

Thought provoking, inspiring and instigating of far right thinking I´d say!
I very much side with Oli Benet on this one, the hatred disqualifying has no room in adulthood, but I understant resentment and have gone through similar feelings many times.
Still, despite I mainly agree with most that has been said, I feel that most people do not aknowledge the “rabbit hole factor”; the psychollogical side of our subculture has much pollution from the leissure industry propaganda, and is in a sense a big fake. Nonetheless, this is ignored in the rolleblading community and all the rest of the action sports niches. (Ref. the apple series)
I feel it is one of the most important aspects of the curve that the average rollerblader has go through, when balancing normal life with rollerblading and the latter slowly goes on to one side. We, the ones that got really implicated, are a majorly marginalised group among society and need to readapt. I am always astonished about how there is such little thinking on these issues, when they represent the very root of the problem. The leissure industry does not take responsibilities for bombarding youth with ideas that aren´t exactly apropriate for them, but how would they, the whole world is irresponsible for their actions. Then you get a whole generation trying to work out what the hell happened with that lifestyle we were sold like it happened from 1999 onwards…
What is key to understand in these subjects is that we have been sold an image for an activity, and that image has to evolve within us because they (industry leaders) won´t market a saner image of it; as profit is tehir religion. As for us, it simply can´t stay in the trick after trick porn, “have a quicky and get rid of the tisue” format. It needs to attend to the intellectual and spiritual needs of teh individual.
This activity must remain giving the individual positive aspects and a sane mindframe, and when it does not, it simply must be adapted without treason threats from the environment or the community.
These ideas are so contemporary they are actually becoming common in rollerblading trends now (bear with them) “quitters never loose”, and stygma ties for you office lovers.

May sarcasm start replacing hatred?

Never too late!

Azur, 29 in few days.

4 07 2009
Good Responses to my and Counter Arguements to my “Thanks for Quitting You Old Asshole! Just More Rolling for Me!” Article « CanadianROLL

[…] Just More Rolling for Me!” Article 4 07 2009 I received a lot of response to the “Thanks for Quiting You Old Asshole! Just More Rolling for Me!” article, which was surprising because it was just an article I wrote to tide me over for the rather […]

7 07 2009
bballog

I’m a little late stumbling onto this gem, but I wanted to say I’m really relieved by the statements you made. I’ve been tossing these ideas around in my head for quite some time now, pretty much after I read that Randy Spizer interview in ONE. And then I thought of all the people who I started skating with when I was 15, and how I’m the only one left. Then I thought about BCAM, Feinberg, and all those people who were supposed to love rollerblading and they fucking quit. It irritates me so much because I also share your thoughts about health, pain, and the struggle to skate at a high level approaching mid to late twenties in age. I never want to quit. And I have also been inspired by rollers like Rob G and Kevin Yee who rigorously practice Yoga or sustainable methods of helping your body endure the perils of rollerblading.

I’m 25, I went to college for 5 years, earned 2 degrees, I work a full-time job, run a zine, and I still rollerblade. IN FACT…I rollerblade 4-5 times a week, more than I ever have. I stretch twice a day, everyday, I eat better, but I still drink too much. But the point is that I feel as if I’m drastically better as i’ve gotten older. I’m less risky, but a better refined skater. And I want to continue this model well into my thirties realistically. God Bless Jon Julio. Thanks for liking Roll Zine.

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