The Answer is Never: A Skateboarder's History of the World

Front Cover
Grove Press, 2002 - Social Science - 354 pages
7 Reviews
From the hard-ridden half-pipe of a suburban driveway to teens doing boardslides down stairway handrails in Rio de Janeiro, from the bright-light glare of ESPN's X-Games to the groundbreaking street-skating videos of Spike Jonze, skateboarding has taken the world by storm -- and if you can't deal with that, get out of the way. In The Answer Is Never, skating journalist Jocko Weyland tells the rambunctious story of a rebellious sport that began as a wintertime surfing substitute on the streets of Southern California beach towns more than forty years ago and has evolved over the decades to become a fixture of urban youth culture around the world. Merging the historical development of the sport with passages about his own skating adventures in such wide-ranging places as Hawaii, Germany, and Cameroon, Weyland gives a fully realized portrait of a subculture whose love of free-flowing creativity and a distinctive antiauthoritarian worldview has inspired major trends in fashion, music, art, and film. Along the way, Weyland interweaves the stories of skating pioneers like Gregg Weaver and the Dogtown Z-Boys and living legends like Steve Caballero and Tony Hawk. He also charts the course of innovations in deck, truck, and wheel design to show how the changing boards changed the sport itself, enabling new tricks as skaters moved from the freestyle techniques that dominated the early days to the extreme street-skating style of today. Vivid and vibrant, The Answer Is Never is a fascinating book as radical and unique as the sport it chronicles.
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jiles2 - LibraryThing

The first of my contemporaries to write a skateboarding memoir in which the protagonist doesn't go on to become a professional, or have a tragic end. Every skateboarder of a certain age can recognize ... Read full review

Review: The Answer Is Never: A Skateboarder's History of the World

User Review  - Noah - Goodreads

I've been on the lookout for a good book about skateboarding history and culture, but I doubt this is it. The prose in this book was so excruciating I couldn't even make it past page 50. Maybe it hits its stride later, but I ran out of patience. Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Introduction
1
Noble Pursuits
9
When the Waves Are Flat
19
The UrethaneFueled Cambrian Explosion
31
Dogtown Rising
41
Play and the Futility of Competition
55
Hot Action
65
Frontier Tales
87
Pflugerville Pilgrimage
191
From Tantalus to Wallos
205
The Future Is Yesterdays Point of Departure
235
Mecca and Beyond
265
We Just Want to Have Some Fun Before We Die
283
The Philosophy Is the Action
299
Awe Against Compromise
319
Afterword History Is Bunk
327

Massive
97
The Death Bowl Giant Pipes and the End of Skating
113
The Elk and the Skateboarder
133
Revenge Against Boredom
153
Meaningful Photo
167
Sources
331
Acknowledgments
337
Index
339
Copyright

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About the author (2002)

Weyland is an acclaimed photographer whose work has appeared in galleries internationally.

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