Blader Digest: Don’t Read This

God, it was just another one of those weeks. It was horrible.

There’s no point to reading anything I have to say. It’s all pointless—I have absolutely no idea what happened in blading on the internet this week. Honestly, I didn’t see shit.

You might as well move on. Really, go check out WEB ROLL #45 at ONE Magazine to find out went down in blading this week. Ben Karris paid attention. I didn’t.

I would have liked to have done the duty had I not been so busy with other bullshit. And that’s going to be happening for some time now.

For the month of November, I’ll be trying to write a complete novel, from Chapter 1 to the word “END” as part of NaNoWriMo. I’ve done it before, so I’m not worried. However, you might be seeing some familiar names and faces taking up my normal Monday space.

But this week…

oh my gawddddd!

How is one supposed to call himself a rollerblader if he hasn’t seen every single latest edit, seen all the videos, and spend static amounts of time paying attention to say who was talking shit or hating or whatever you call what people do on the internet?

Blading should follow my porn habits, right? I mean, I should be accessing maximum amounts of free online content anytime I get my apartment to myself, right? I should consume it with obsessive-compulsive desires that someone deep into dark depths of a meth binge could never fear, right?

Well, I am in the dark. Again.

The reason for my lack of online-blading knowledge stems from an awkward part of rollerblading that some people seem to forget occasionally—the actual act of rollerblading. You know, going out, doing tricks, building up a sweat, leaving blood on concrete, or at least some wheel marks.

That's some Julio wall mashing going on there, not mine.

See, it’s been a rough week because I’ve spent so much time in my skates.

Okay, that’s a nice way to put it should my blades ever read this, but I have to be honest—I’m being stalked by my skates!

I like to skate downtown San Francisco every morning on my way to work. It started out just a quicker way to do some blocks and have my skates for a post-work sesh. That was until I stopped taking a direct route and started meandering blocks out of the way to find spots to skate. Now, it’s all about trying to hone down a 15-block line. Again, I’m trying here.

But this week was bad. My skates would not leave me alone.

Seriously, one day I worked and dog-sat at the same time. I was already multi-tasking whilst tapping away inside a cubicle and then I had a dog to care for? Would my skates leave me alone then?


And then there was the skating.


By Thursday, I’d skated a total of eight times since Monday. And then there was Thursday night skating. I tell you, you have 12 people from out of town sleeping on your floor and all of a sudden everyone that just touched down wants to skate. It’s like a curse.

Did they consider my Fear-esque relationship with my skates? Did they know they were already stepping into a complicated relationship—one of us that requires constant attention and maintenance, while doing nothing but hurting the other?

Wait. That goes both ways.

Okay. Ignore that last bit.

But yeah, my creeper-ass, Stage 5-clinging skates wouldn’t leave me alone. No matter what was going on—from company Halloween party to ensuing hangover—they wanted attention.

And I’d give up on them if it weren’t for what they do for me.

But, hey, it’s rollerblading, so it kicks ass, no matter how beat and dirty you feel getting up every morning.

The moment when I first strap in—as I hold onto a newspaper rack to step into my skates as the suit-and-tie guys and the overly hot, out-of-my-league business women walk by—and dash down the sidewalk right into morning traffic, that’s the first moment of my day when I feel awake. That’s when I know if I don’t keep ahead of everyone’s pace or I slip for even the slightest bit, I could be run over by drivers with glazed-over eyes.

(Then again, that’s kind of how life works.)

Or when I hit skate spots between people walking to work. Or when people start bitching me out for skating shit in front of their building and let me skate after I say, “I’m just trying to get some exercise in before work.”

Then there’s the moment when I leave work. My skates are there waiting for me. When I can strap my skates on and weave through traffic again, which for two days last week and at least one day this week will be people trying to get to the World Series. That, to me, is really, really cool because people are going to watch other people—who they will most likely never meet—play a sport. Thousands of people, all ready to watch, when a few of us would rather spend our lives doing things than watching others do them.

(That, too, seems like how life works.)

Then there are the weekend sessions. Again, this week was really bad because of all the friends—ones I knew before and others I just made—in town.

The skates, they said to me, “More, more, more, more…”

They’re even nice and close to me as I write this.

Maybe that’s not a bad thing.

You guys ever feel that great? Like, every day? Like every time you put on your skates and just go blade?

I hope you do because it kind of has a way to silence all the stupid shit around you and make the world silently perfect, if just for moments at a time. It’s really good at helping make sense of everything.

So, yeah, I spent the whole week blading instead of reading and listening to everyone else’s bitching. It was amazing.

Maybe we should think of those great blading moments next time we spend too much time trying to be cool on the internet by tearing into others.

Put on your skates, work out your frustration on some concrete. After that, after you’re too tired to cram yourself into the backseat of a friend’s Honda Civic coupe, then go out and appreciate others that are risking life and limb to dance on top of inanimate objects… just like you.

Just because you don’t like it doesn’t make it bad. Respect the differences.

It’s like the prevailing white-washed American Dream bullshit that’s revving up the Tea Party in American politics has invaded everything, or maybe they’re taking a cue from online blader trolls. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again—

a homogeneous rollerblading culture is just wrong.

Fuck, any homogeneous culture is wrong. If we’re all the same, that’s just wrong. However, our tolerance and experiences with other cultures is one that should be welcomed friendly, appreciated, explored regularly.

If we do not see something that is different from our preconceived notions or belabored expectations and hope to learn from it then we, as a species and a family, have failed.

Yes, I know people will always disagree, but I thought an evolved species united by a common love and belief (in our circle it might be ‘rollerblading kicks ass’) would be able to set aside petty shit or retardation and celebrate our commonalities and differences simultaneously, but oh no! We’re evolved, but not that far along.

Then again, you see that kind of separation of beliefs and inner-bickering in everything—government, organized religion, marriages, school systems, or people trying to figure out what or where to eat.

Because let’s face it…

there is so much tight shit going on right now!

But what the fucks the point?

This is all stupid drivel anyway.

It changes nothing, just as the way no matter how many places I’m bleeding out of right now, or how many weird noises my broken and wasted body makes, I’ll still strap my skates on tomorrow morning before work.

No matter what shit gets talked inside skating, I’m going to keep doing it.

No matter what hate gets spread towards us or among us, I’m going to keep going. I quit skating once. Biggest mistake of my life.

You know why? Because of all the things skating has done for me, how great it makes me feel, how I don’t have to sit in some douche bag-filled gym, how I don’t watch sports because I do something better, how it’s given me countless great friends, how it’s given me something proud to identify with, how…

Well, you get the point.

The best reminder of how fucking kick ass rollerblading is this week is a little simple event you may or may not have had the luxury of attending:

Let’s just put the event this way—you know that scene in Inglourous Bastards where lots people wanted to capitalize on knocking out major players in WWII because they all congregated inside the same movie theater? You know the one. The scene where this chick laid down some of that burn-them-alive revenge:

Yeah, well, that many influential people in blading—past and present—were in that theater on Friday night.

You want Matt Andrews, Roadhouse, Kennan Scott, or Jon Julio? Covered.

You want Erik Bailey, Jon Julio, Soichiro Kanashima, or Rob G? Covered.

You want North America, Europe, Australia, Asia, or Jon Julio? Why are you even asking?

You want some JSF-tastic clips from fools like Brandon Smith, Erick Garcia, Kennan Scott, and others that I was too drunk to remember who all had clips? Bitch, please, you know they had that shit, too.

Holy shit balls was it the 4Life premiere awesome!

The Apollo didn’t have shit on this crowd. There were few of us who didn’t have sore throats in the morning. The rest of us could barely talk.

But you ask, “The video? What can we—those of us who haven’t seen it or want to see it again—expect?”

Well, it’s what the marketing campaign on this is trying to project…

And before you start crying conspiracy theory or other stupid shit people want to project into rollerblading, here’s all my biases—the man behind the project, Ivan Narez, is my roommate, I personally know some of the pros, and I have a clip in the video.

That being said, especially as Ivan is my roommate and I know some of the guys, I would love to talk shit about them on the internet because that’s my favorite thing to threaten to do when they take all the toilet paper and I realize after crushing out a nasty one.

(Get it?)

You really, really, really, really, really, really, want to get this video when it drops.

That being said, I have nothing more to say than…

Blade or die,

— Brian Krans

P.S. — If you’re only going to watch anything this week, it should be this…

If you do, please pay attention.


  • Every Monday morning Blade or Die is the first site I visit. I have actually been dealing with a lot of frustrations in my life right now and this is exactly what I needed to read. Even though I’m on the mend for an injury this really helped remind me that after all the crap in my life blading will always be there for me. So thank you for making a world of difference for someone who really needed today.

  • Cool. It was a different read from usual but kept me intrigued. I spose that that is really the essence of blading. Knowing that everyday when you strap on skates your effectively doing the same thing again and again however people that do blade know that it means more than that. You really get better each time you strap on your skates.

    Any idea when 4Life will be available for the public to buy/watch online?

  • bladeordie wrote:


    While there’s no official release date, the wait won’t be too long. Ivan and the guys are working hard on getting it out.

    Besides, no matter what, it will totally be worth the wait. Shit’s crazy. And over an hour long.

    — Krans

  • Ok sweet thanks Krans. Looking forward to it!

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