Bobbejaan revives a generation of skaters and music
By Lize Scheepers
As I arrived at Thrashers Skate Park, I was not sure what to expect. The sun was out for the first time in weeks and I was definitely not the only one that was excited about this; it was evident in all the skaters that showed up to get their tricks and kicks on the go.
There is something about a skate park that is hard to explain to someone that has never been to one. It’s mood lets you lose yourself completely; in-between the clarity of the plywood tails of skateboards snapping against the recreational environment This is what Thrashers has to offer.
The name of the skate park came from the ‘Thrashers’ skateboard magazine, and it is one of the oldest in South Africa.
As the skateboarders popped an ollie up-and-down the skate park, it made me realize that skateboarding alters your perfection of urban space forever. With the streets as their playground, and the skate park as their core; loyal friendships are formed – a wolf pack of sorts – with whom you roam, hunting out new challenges and opportunities. It is more than just the tricks they do; it is where they do it and how they do it.
The resurrection, classified in a skateboarding culture, is referred to the older generation of skaters; that has ‘risen from the dead’ to come show off some of their old-school-cool-skills.
On this particular day, skaters flew through the ‘playground’ in the same way that water find its natural route. With tenacity to boot; elaborate tricks can include dizzying midair flip and twists, but mastering them takes the discipline to get back on the board after falling.
Henk Van Der Schyf was handing out free beer, but the catch was that you had to snap a picture, followed by hashtags and post it on Instagram. Oh the allure of the internet.
As The Tazers joined the stage it became excessively hot; burning to death in the sun kind of made the show completely worth is. A few days after their latest album dropped, with three fans and two photographers gracing their presence, it feels like they need to buy us some beer next time for showing up.
On our way to the bar, for some much needed ice-cold beer, I realized that there is something about the people that hail from Pretoria; the people I met managed to put my faith back in humanity. People greeting you with smiles, asking you if you would like to come and skate with them, buying you tequila or giving you a free beer. Somehow for me, Johannesburg has lost its essence, or I am just hanging out with the wrong crowd?
Although the event information said that the bar shall be fully stocked, they ran out of beer, but that did not stop us from drinking. Runaway Nuns joined the stage and offered their fast-paced, fuzzy, super fun psychedelic music. I think what makes them different is that they have four singers in the band; one lead, three backing and they kill it in these dimensions.
Unfortunately, I did not stay for the winners of the Skate competition nor for Ruff Majik, but one thing I can tell you is that the okes over at Bobbejaan know how to put a show together. It seems to exceed my expectations every-damn-time. Till next time Thrashers, I am sure we will meet again.