Kook Pool

Now I’m not about to enter into the name of the pool or any of that. That is what it was known as. Cheers to those that scoped it out and made it rideable.

Pools in Australia are usually small, bathtub sized transition and pretty difficult to skate. This one was indeed a harsh old matron of a thing. Rough, a bit slippery, tight as fuck… and Shane Macgowan teeth for coping. It was one of the best ones found in Melbourne though for the last decade.

The forecast was grim. Drizzle all day and little hope. As far as I knew it was a goner and we had one day to give it a crack. We gathered the crew and ignored the BOM radar and headed west.

The house was being demolished and was half done. There was no reason for a bunch of us to be filing inside. We aren’t really discrete even when we try! The older Vietnamese neighbours were standing in their front yard as our black vehicles pulled in and tattooed up skateboarders emerged.

Somehow, the newspapers did the job and we got some. The pool lasted a lot longer than expected. The workmen dropped in to say g’day a couple of times without any worries.

Precision drying tools

The drizzle ceased and the session commenced

Getting over the light was the first order of business. Chris

Jesse

There’s going to be a lot of frontside grind photographs. It is the best feeling trick and charging one in a backyard pool is one of the best feelings ever on a skateboard. Getting one in this pool is no joke. It was super tight and loads of vert. Bristol fought for it and won.

Tom Rees, full power

There are few that make skateboarding look as good as Anton Jeandet. Barging through three or four pavers.

Cunnaz is always going to give it a solid nudge

Pivot on a serious amount of vert

Threading a line through the top step and jagged pavers was super difficult. I had a street fight with it and got away with it, but it took me about a solid hour! It was steep rolling into the deep, which doesn’t really translate in the photos.

Bisho did it the fastest

Muddy had the goofy line dialed

Brighty went to war in the thing. Impossible lines constantly. Hefty ollie over the steps.

Rock and roll

I don’t understand how he did them, frontside grinds in the shallow.

R.I.P Kook Pool

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Well bugger me I’m 40: Mild in the streets

Why would you do a blog post on your own skateboarding? Well lets face it no one else is going to run these photos. There are vast grades of skateboarding that ranges from pissweak to mind blowing. I am under no illusion to which end of the scale my “skill” lies. But that is largely irrelevant.

Skateboarding is difficult. It doesn’t get easier as the teeth marks of time leave their scars. I have been finding myself staying in second gear a fair bit. I thought with the milestone of 40 hovering on the horizon I should try and get some photos together to push my skateboarding. Enough of second gear, every now and then you have to dump the clutch and sink the boot in.

Thank you to Duncan Ewington (@ewingram) for his patience and for all the photographs. It’s rad to have mates like you keeping the stoke alive.

Same goes for all my extended skate family, particularly the Grim Creepers and NSC crew. Y’all bring the juice to a session. I appreciate it immensely. Nothing better than to hit the road with you lot.

Shout out to my younger brother, and also mentor, Hugh. We share the same birthday. I’ll do a Respect Where Due on him when his broken wrist mends.

I have to thank my gorgeous wife Jo. As I rapidly accelerate through my mid life crisis into old age I couldn’t hope for a better person to share the experience with.

“Skateboarding doesn’t make you a skateboarder; not being able to stop skateboarding makes you a skateboarder.” Lance Mountain

No Comply in Collingwood

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Dodging Friday night St Kilda pedestrains and an awful run up. Slappy

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Pole schloop

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Why do I look so terrified? Wall ride under the rail line

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This bowl is very difficult. So much fun though! Slash at Bowlriders HQ

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Friday at Noble Park

The weather has been horrid every day off I have had lately. Friday was superb, so it was time for some skids on the old skateboard. I went into work at 7:45 to tie up some loose ends, then to Doncaster to get my back aligned (is there nothing more satisfying?) and then met up with Duncs.

The CSP crew were kind enough to invite a few heads out for a roll at the nearly finished Noble Park behemoth. I couldn’t pass up on that, the place will be the best park in the state. The fences are still up and security present, so if you haven’t been invited just wait a few more weeks. The place is epic, snake run, bowl and street section are incredible. Hats off to the CSP crew on the tools Baseplate and Australian Legend Johnny McGrath.

Ghetto spot warm ups. Duncan with a pole jam 180

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Nosegrab pollie

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I screwed my thumb in the first 10 minutes but was keen to hit this bump. I’ll have to go back for what I wanted, school pickup was on and it was a nightmare! Bean plant, thanks Duncan for the photo

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Then out to Noble Park in the shittiest of traffic. It is poured perfectly, what a park! I’m so keen for it to be open and finished

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This is my favourite bit. It flows beautifully

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Faster Seany was charging. Good to catch up. Fangin’

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Simon was finding solid form in the intimidating bowl. Styling airs

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Invert on the chunky coping

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Grim Creeper/CSP ruler Shoota has been on the tools all week with a few broken ribs. Still blasted a perfect stalefish before sundown. Thanks Concrete Skateparks, next slab is on me

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Concrete induced freedom

I’m sitting at my old work, a joint where I spent 50 hours a week in a high pressure high stress environment. Sure I had some fun and met some great people, but sure as hell I saw the ugly, at times unfair dog eat dog side of big business. I’m not bagging my old employer at all, they helped me buy a house and were very supportive during hard times. I learnt a great deal and gained some great mentors I will seek advice from for a lifetime. It is a reflection on the industry in general and this place was paradise compared to most joints in the field.

It is just one of those days of reflection. A mid life crisis. I tried to work in youth work and have a meaningful impact, I was great with some kids but found I got frustrated with kids lacking motivation. Not good at all. Plus it sucked working so hard and not being able top meet your financial responsibilities. Do I go back to school and study? Do I move to the mountains? How do I find meaningful ways to have a positive impact on the world? How can I make a living and get by using my creativity?

None of this matters when you have your mates following you in convoy ready to battle some concrete. I can immerse myself in a bubble of people that I can relate to. People I understand and respect. I can see them push their limits, struggle with determination versus self preservation. As they release the burden of self restraint and wind up to full speed. The session builds. Heats up. Internal battles are fought. People get broke off and look like throwing in the towel. They pick themselves up due to the heckles and more often than not get away with landing what they were trying, to the wolf pack noises from their mates. It is a simple, childish and somewhat foolish pursuit. To me, it makes everything make sense. I am so grateful to be a part of it, even if my passion to skills balance is way off.

The weather has not been kind. The crew took advantage of a clear day and hit the road Geelong way.

The Pit didn’t get sessioned that much this time. I think after one of the MOSS boys was laying motionless in the bottom for a bit people lost their motivation. 35 year old ‘crete hurts

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The session gathered. It was Bobby from Italy’s birthday and he had tee’d up his mates. The Paint Tray had not seen this many heads hit it up for a very long time.

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I had not seen Cunnaz skate here. He is a very powerful skater and I was keen to see what he had for the old hag. He destroyed, as always.

Boardslides

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Susky’s every shot

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Gougin’

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Back D’s

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Bobby is a ripping skater. Fast, loose as hell with a big bag of manoeuvres.

Corner skids

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Sliding these back tails mid run

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The Mayor on home turf. A 40 year old schralping a 35 year old corner

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DNL. I’m inserting this to taunt him to land it.

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Shoota has been battling cancer. After the brutality that is chemo he stepped up to the plate and went hard at it. Straight to flat at full tilt.

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Tail through the chunk. I shot a photo here that will go into Slam Magazine, keep an eye out. Epic battle.

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We stayed a little longer than planned and then booted out to Ocean Grove. Good lines, never busy and nice chunky coping.

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I really do aim to get a photo of everyone on the session every time. I blew it this mission.

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There used to be a vert ramp in the same paddock when Matt was at school. He returned to his old stomping grounds and slayed some coping

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Shoota smith.

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You know it’s fast with them angles

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Cunnaz blasting. He shut the joint down with his last runs

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I didn’t take enough photos of Brighty. He smashed it all day

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Stumps. Thanks again gents.

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