Blader Digest: We’re Headed to the X-Games

This week couldn’t start any better. Mainly, because we’re gonna dig back into a little blading history, then punch forward into the present, whether you like it or not.

Dion Antony: The Paparazzi’s new pal

Oh, yeah. If any of you who remember the late 90s—as in you didn’t come out of the womb during those years—then you know who the fuck Dion Antony is. Aussie ripper, extraordinaire.

Well, he’s still ripping.

But, again, that’s not the news.

It seems that Mr. Antony is quite infamous lately… for being a pimp.

Basically, as the Aussie press would have us believe, a super-famous model is dating a carpenter and that’s somehow a bad thing.

Elitist pricks.

Anyway, we all know how fucking tight Dion is because, well, he made such a big mark on skating in the 90s. You say that name and all I think about is a speed in skating that didn’t exist many other places at the time.

See for yourself.

But, as life usually goes, there’s always more to the story between Mr. Antony and Miss Bingie:

The first photo, is well, fake.Some photographer took two photos of them leaving a place separately, and then put them together. The story goes that the two hang out, but they’re not officially an item.Whatever.

Still though, spending time with a beautiful model isn’t too bad for a blader. He’s not the first, but snagging hot chicks is never a bad thing. Then again, Dion has done some modeling of his own:

I've heard Chuck Norris has another fist behind his beard, but Dion has him beat.

Be like mike

As many of you know, former pro blader Mike Budnik likes to punch people in the face for a living. And that’s pretty cool.

Basically, this was then:

And this is now:

That’s not the news though. What’s new is that a few weeks ago, Budnik was on the MMA’s show The Ultimate Fighter. Basically, it’s like Fight Club but you have to leave the Paper Street House if you lose a fight.

Unfortunately, Mike didn’t make the cut after his first fight. Check it out here.

I don’t want to mention how uncomfortable I felt when Mike’s face was in an inappropriate place because, well, I’d like to remain alive.

Still, congrats to Mike for even making it onto the show. That’s fucking rad.

Sorry, but all this nostalgia is making me a little verklempt.

Man, you guys remember those guys shredding in the X-Games? I did. Mike’s runs are still the first thing I think of when I hear the song Semi Charmed Life by Matchbox 20.

Well, those days might be back.

When the X-games come calling

If there’s anyone that knows the X-Games, it’s BMX vert God, legend, and pro, Jamie Bestwick.

So this week, he announced a little bit of info that’s pretty big:

“Rollerblading back in x games 17!!”


Don’t believe me, check it out:

Wait, joking? Fuck.

We were so close. That elated feeling that swept over me was like riding a mythical beast along with a woman with boobs bigger than my head.

Or maybe anyone who believed that was just huffing cat piss.

I still wonder why we seek X-Games’ (read: corporate heaven) approval for anything. Really, at this point, what is the point?

C’mon. The fucking X-Games? Is that the best we can do? I don’t think so.

They kicked us out, a story told over and over and over to the point of us sounding like emo ex-boyfriends, still pining over the one that got away. We sit here, waiting for her to call, talking about how bad she fucked us over, but we still would give anything to have her back.

It’s fucking pathetic.

But then again, maybe I’m not alone. Check out this petition that’s the center of  a Facebook group:

Hmm…240 “signatures” when there are 12,261 members of a Facebook group simply called “Rollerblading.”

Did the executives over at ESPN say, “Hey, if you get 1,000,000 people to sign an online petition, rollerblading is back in”? Actually, guaranteeing them that kind of viewership might spark something considering this year’s X-Games were the most watched, but for 20.5 hours of coverage the average viewership was around 465,900.

Then again, the petition is just people clicking a button on Facebook. Have you ever seen a Facebook group actually do anything?Have we found a cure for cancer? Has any wronged person found justice because of a Facebook group?

No. Because anyone with half an ounce of intelligence knows that, yeah, sure, people will join a group for something or whatever, but when it comes to actually doing something offline, away from the internet, interest drops significantly.

If you don’t believe me, look at the voter turnout in America—56.8 percent of all eligible voters That’s the highest it’s been since 1968. Then again, that’s when they elected Nixon, so maybe voter turnout isn’t always a good thing.

Yeah, a presidential election isn’t as important as seeing rollerblading on the X-Games. It’s just deciding who’s going to shape public policy that can affect your daily lives, privacy, and how your money is spent. Why would you want to leave school or work—when the law says you are given the right to leave both those things to get there—to cast  a vote when you can embark into social justice on Facebook?

Joining a group on Facebook to get something is the laziest way to ever do something. Signing an online petition or joining a Facebook group is like praying for something—you’re not really doing anything, but you can say you did.

(Sorry to any of you avid prayers out there, but maybe God’s pissed off at all the stupid shit you ask for. Try doing it yourself first and then bug the Big Guy later if it doesn’t work out.)

My point? If you really want to see blading on the X-Games, do something about it.

Besides, why the fuck do we want to be in the X-Games? It’s really pointless, actually. Sure, it’s exposure, but on terms not remotely close to ours. Oh, the elusive exposure. We’d have it, but it wouldn’t be the image we chose.We get invited back and all it’s going to be is some blading in a mess load of Mountain Dew and Axe Body Spray ads.

Yeah, blading doesn’t have money in it, but at least we’re not shameless corporate whores willing to do the bidding of ad executives just for a paycheck. Then again, I’m sure a lot of people wouldn’t bat an eyelash to take that cash.

Instead of still trying to win back the X-Games, why not trying to get the WRS some exposure? You know, comps run by bladers, not CEOs of multi-billion dollar companies that see that which we are so passionate about as merely a way to make more money. You know, so they can buy their mistress a car or something.

‘Cause I’m sure we all want to be part of that.

What more adequately sums up what rollerblading is: the X-Games or the Bitter Cold Showdown? If you said the first one, e-mail me your address so I can come over to your house and slap you.

And, yes, BCSD founder and organizer Daniel Kinney has been working on getting BCSD televised. He might have even done it and I missed it. But that’s one comp once a year. That’s not going to “save rollerblading” or whatever term people throw out there all of the time.

Mainly, if you’re not willing to put in the work, stop pretending. Knock of the fucking bullshit. Just skate and and let it be that.

If you are doing the work, thanks. If you doing shit merely on Facebook, you’re not in that group.

But, hey, it’s going to be okay. Everything is going to be alright. The world isn’t ending. We can all still skate, make edits, and talk shit on the internet.

Just go out and have fun. Do your thing. Some people won’t like it, some people will. Don’t plan on making any money off of it. Let it ruin your body and welcome it because without it, life would suck that much more.

If my diatribe of bullshit is weighing you down and you really need to rejuvenate the blading batteries, find a nice big hill and bomb it. I, personally, recommend Oak Street in San Francisco. Late on a Tuesday night is usually pretty fun.

Yes, I know those are skateboarders. Deal with it.

Fuck traffic, mismatched stop lights, and everything else. Just go really fucking fast. Nothing makes you feel quite like a kid again like going 45+ mph in a pack, at dark, without pads.

Nothing wakes you up quicker than the reality that if you fall, you’ll probably lose your face.

That, and some bitches love it.

Hey, I have an idea: everyone come to the Valo 4Life premiere on Oct. 29 here in lovely, hilly San Francisco. We’ll get a mob of bladers to mash the hills.

You know you want to.

Blade or Die,

— Brian Krans


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