West End Girl
I just figure we will meet at TF, but we want to skate Gay Ledge so Roctakon suggests TF West, which makes more sense. I swap my Allen Edmonds for Dunks and skate over on Prince after my job interview, still in tie and two shirts and black wool Freeman's jacket with Red Backpack. The layering is good for the weather and the black Freemans piece is a durable outer layer since I fall some when I skate. I get to TF West first first, set down my bag and take off my jacket since the park is in strong sunlight. I start popping tricks then Roctakon comes though in a Tebow Jets jersey. We politic and Zach Baker texts to say he's off work on and his way. Roctakon and I play SKATE and I set a tre flip to start off that he lands too. I end up beating him with fakie heels and shit as he gives me SKAT. Baptiste rolls through on two wheels and a bike basket full of Sex Hippie gear and vintage menswear. He likes our enthusiasm and says he might come out to Gay Ledge.
A few minutes after Baptiste dips, Baker shreds up with backpack and we skate flat for some more deciding if we are really going to go to Gay Ledge. There is a group of children gathered around a teacher and after some time we hear commotion and look over to see huge spray from a two liter bottle of cola that has undergone a reaction. Then a party boy skater shows up and starts doing back 360s every try, the gentleman way. I film him and ask if he wants to skate ledges and he says it sounds fun but he is kicking it with his other friend so i say Later. I drink to finish my water bottle and go over to the fountain to refill it. While we're drinking an Asian woman longboards past dressed in a trench coat.
We walk past Da Silvano and Pitti then cross 6th Avenue at Bleeker, where we see the long boarder again. She is pushing strong against traffic on a cell phone, along the green cycling path paint job that is sort of worn because autos end up riding on it on the thin street and we have to pay mind to the bicycles heading into us too. Though confrontational, this is the fastest way to Cristopher street and it's tight watching this girl push on a mission. She rolls over a grate with no fear that i always avoid on my smaller wheels and it poses no problem. We end up kind of passing her and she has to notice us even though she is still on her phone, then we cut left onto Christopher and take that down to the water.
Now that we ride downhill in the flow of traffic we can relax, enjoy the ride and pop a couple flat ground tricks, though I don't because I have a backpack so manual more. We get to Gay ledge and it is chill, kinda windy but we don't let that stop us. I do a line of half cab nose slide then back tail then nollie 360 flip. Now that I have done 360 flip and back tail in the same day I am content. Some parks workers give us the boot and tell us about nearby skatepark offerings. Roctakon suggests Strip Club ledge so we cross the highway back into the city. Roctakon's deejaying at Westway that night so we might as well scope the block while there's daylight. I'm chilling on the skating but am down to film and they both want to pick up clips. Roctakon fake 360 flipped down 3 up 3 down the other day and now wants to take his new ledge moneymaker, the back 180 nose grind out to fakie on strip club ledge.
So here we are, at the metal ledge, frontside for goofy, kind of tall on sidewalk. It's pretty high and anything is cool as far as I'm concerned. So you know: Marquez did back nose grind pop out in a line in undershirt and bucket hat. I start filming. Baker lands a nose slide third try then does a wall ride further down. Then he starts going for crooks, to either fakie or pop out as he grinds. He was scraping them through the crusty Gay ledge and now on this angle iron is able to enjoy the grind. I film each of them as they take turns. Roctakon kick flips up the curb first and I film him from the back is fine because his Tebow Jets jersey shows. After a first few pokes he's kinda getting into the 180 nose grind. He depends on the ledge to take him for the ride, not like he was able to stand over it on the low Gay ledge. The attempts look good and he grinds for a few feet then he rolls away to fakie 10th try with enough speed to finesse a switch heels to finish. We scope the footy and I kept his body in the frame.
With this footage the day is officially chill and we agree that refreshment is in order. We skate east and stop by a deli where Roctakon buys a bottled beverage. Baker and I vaguely mention coffee but don't make any moves to get it and just like that, we have dodged a financial expenditure. We decide to wind down with more flat at TF West since we still have daylight, which turns into a blue raspberry sunset and Baker does a wallride. Roctakon dips to go to a meeting so Baker and I keep kicking it since we have no other plans. Zach rolls a spliff and we are about to go in but I saw it was the last of his pack and I don't have any so I say, "how about we wait for a little." He says "why." I say "so we'll have it later."
"I can get down with that," so he tucks the spliff behind his ear then rolls and smokes a cigarette instead. Mooney texts that he's coming through so we sit there as the day turns dark and Mooney skates in, in a sweatshirt and we comment on the cold. It is too dark to skate so we sit along the wall that Baker wall rode and smell the smells coming from the Italian restaurant. There is a girl with a dog over by the dugout benches and she keeps throwing the ball toward us and the dog keeps bringing the ball back to us so we throw the ball toward her back and forth. I don't really feel comfortable around dogs all the time so leave this pitching mostly to Mooney and Baker. Mooney mentions how he is into the girl. Of course he is, we like all the girls who bring things to the parks and if she's going by this park with a dog she lives in this good area. Then she leaves. If we come here around this time again maybe we'll see her again.
A few minutes later a couple more girls walk in. They are older. One is white with short blonde hair wearing black. One is brown wearing orange pants and navy wrap up top. Maybe they are roommates. They both know the Dog and throw his ball around. I wonder if they're lesbians. Mooney says they are not.
One girl smokes something and soon enough this dog is coming to visit us too. This one is big and powerful and Mooney handles him and says the skin is tight because it is fat. He bets they feed the dog human food and we imagine the filling meals these women eat.
They come over and I ask the dog's name. "Knuckles." Mooney says they should name it Tank but the brunette says says that too many boxers are named Tank. "I would name him Jerome Bettis."
"Her, actually. I knew she would come over once she saw your boards. She likes skateboards."
"She's a skateboarding dog?" Mooney says.
"No, she just likes them. She knows that skaters are cool."
"Your dog has good taste in men." They laugh. The girls have to be tough to handle this dog and they kind of are. The one who had been smoking has a rounder face dark hair, the other has short blonde hair and leather.
"Are you single?" I ask. It is best to know.
"me too." The brunette is the one I wonder. This is good news.
"Me too." So is the blonde. So is Mooney. So is Baker. I introduce myself. Her name is Annette. Her friend is Lisa. Since I talked to them I might as well go further.
"We were about to burn this joint. Do you want in?" The blonde says no first, then the brunette says yes and Baker sparks. passes clockwise to Annette first and she offers it to Mooney after a couple hits but he declines so I take the stick from her. Now we're closer to kissing and more high too. It's good to be passing since that makes the illegal substance disappear quicker.
"Do you ladies feel like spending more time together? We can combine trios."
They look at each other. Lisa speaks. "We're going to a movie first. Do you want to meet up later?" Of course we do. Annette asks for my number. She does not give hers. She says "I'll call you." They head out, south east. Annette and Lisa look older than us and anticipation is almost better than going somewhere right now, though of course they could not appear again once we part ways. She has my number. I don't have to do anything.
And now we have to wait for some time so we aren't wasted by evening. We decide to buy a meal at whole foods that we will take to Mooneys to cook it since that will fill more time and we can buy some beer too. Baker likes to cook and it's easiest to have one person cooking while we drink and Listen to Future. Once Dinner is served, steak and Peppers with pasta, we watch the video Cell Out I reviewed below this entry. I text with Eugenie and Coupons and they're both talking about the moves they'll be making after midnight.
Then Valentine and Thando come out of Thando's room. We didn't even sure they were in there. They're about to go west because Valentine is singing around 10:30 at the 92nd St Y in Tribeca. After our Meal we skate west on Prince and head to Valentine's show where we buy three dollar Budweiser before the show starts. This fourth beer is just what I need to keep my buzz going and there are plenty of girls to observe as Thando presses play and Alison Valentine sings with heart and charm. She is better than the audience expects a singer they don't know to be, and the crowd draws in as she sings "It Girl" and ends with Tele Francaise.
After the show Valentine is glowing and says she want to dance later but let's have a drink first. She wants to pick up her bike and we all have our boards so we go to hers and kick it in the garden. I'm looking at my phone when I get a text asking "You guys still want to meet up."
I say, "yeah, We're still in the neighborhood."
"Barrow Street Pub,"
When I read the text aloud Alison reacts, because Barrow Street Pub is where Alison and I have been meaning to drink for some time so we take that as a good sign. Since 11 is a half hour off I say we'll be there at 11. Valentine and Thando want to meet these girls too so we finish our beers then we all roll over. The bar is crowded but we're text that we have some sitting space in the back. The girls come as we're settling into our drinks and we all have seats and it's not too loud to talk. We introduce each other and tell about the time that's passed. They went to the Basketball documentary and Mooney says how couldn't they have invited us and she said because they had to decide if they were going to meet up with us. They think Valentine is cool too so we're all making roving conversation. Lloydski is back in town so Valentine wants to go to Night People so we decide to go to Le Bain. Eugenie is going to be there too so we decide to make our way, walking since we're with these girls and this time it is Annette with a spliff that we enjoy.
We say whats up to Ian at the door, then they take our skateboards into the security room and I leave my backpack too. Once we are up there it is slow progress in high crowd, a good reason not to have boards. These girls have a card that takes care of the drinks even though Lisa closes the tab and we start walking around as the DJ switches between Young Scooter and Royal Trux. Mooney and Lisa disappear so Annette and I remark on that as we step up to the outside and I don't know what happened to Baker or Valentine either. My phone is out of battery so it's not in my power.
We make it up to the roof where Annette smokes two cigarettes then we're just standing there and our drinks are empty and making it to the bar will probably be a 10 minute 20 dollar project. "Do you want to leave?" I say.
We take the elevator, grab my things, say goodbye to Ian, then walk down along the Westside. Annette smokes a cigarette and I watch, then we turn the corner on Jane and are about to head up when Annette says, "you're right. Let's just go to mine."
We stop by a deli on the way. The deli guys appear to know her. We get ice cream, snappea crisps and soda water. Annette gets cigarettes. She pulls out a card. I give her a twenty that is my last through I don't say anything. She takes the 20 then she tucks it back into my jacket breast pocket and tells me to save it so I say cool. We walk down King Street, which is the same name of my home Street in Indiana. I hear wheels rolling past and look. It's the girl from earlier in the trench coat. "Do you know her?" Annette asks.
"Not really, but I got footage of her skating earlier today."
"Yeah, I see her skating around all the time. She's a tough chick."
I take out my flip cam and scroll through the clips until I get to hers and show Annette the clip. It's not a magnificent clip, mostly my pushing to catch up with her, but definitely the same girl. "That's a cool video camera. Can you set it up to film us?"
"So long as we keep the lights on."
As she pushes the key into the lock this courtship finally starts to feel real, then she closes the door behind us and it is.