10.10.2011

chrome ball incident #700: the c-block































































"The Hollywood of skateboarding." -MC

"Embarcadero was my home. That’s what I remember, just sitting there early morning on a ledge with my back perfect, watching the fog roll-in and slowly hitting the Embarcadero building… the colors, the pigeons… fucking wonderland." -James Kelch

This one changed everything. The single most important spot in the history of skateboarding, Embaracadero's influence still weighs heavy to this day. And there will never be another. Mecca.

love & lies

----

Allow me a chance to get all sentimental for a moment and take this opportunity to thank everyone for all of the support this site has received over the course of these past 700 posts. I'm truly honored and humbled.

Part of the reason why I started this blog was as an attempt to try and give something back to skateboarding on some level... but I keep on finding myself more and more in it's debt. Truly the best thing ever.

Thanks to my friends at Nike SB, Heel Bruise, ABD, Epicly Later'd, Deluxe, Stereo, the Tap, Sole Tech, OneUp, Black Box, Scumco, Transworld, Skateboarder, Skateboard Mag and all the other mags out there.

Big up to Peel, Chan, Beats, JayCee, Brink, Whiteley, Sissi, Jim T, Skin, Don P, Mulder, JT, Jaime Owens, O'Dell, Grosso, Dill, Damon Thorley, Darin, Smyth, Meza, Randozzi, Munzenrider, Mate, Greg Hunt, Templeton Elliott, Castles, Condo Nick, Royce, Travis, Shinebox, Cheaps, Lint, Quartersnacks, YWS, Trashfilter, Vert is Dead and about a billion more that have helped me out along the way.

Eternal gratitude to all my interviewees and guest posters... doubly so for Keith Hufnagel who did both.

Special thanks to all my commenters out there for really keeping this thing going.

Thank you Neil Blender and Andy Jenkins. Thanks everybody.

...be back on Wednesday.

40 comments:

Anonymous said...

Best post yet.

ATM said...

It took me 5 minutes to just reach the bottom of the page, I approve. Thanks and congrats, chops. I was actually just searching for the link to buy one of those CBI/Heel Bruise shirts when I realized I was wearing one of my Chrome Ball shirts already.

Thanks again.

Jaime Owens said...

Big ups Eric! Keep it up. Great EMB post.

Anonymous said...

superb stuff. long may you post!

Brendan said...

Great post for number SEVEN-FUCKIN'-HUNDRED!!!
EMB forever.
Way to go,Chops,keep it up!

Skate Nazi said...

Holy shit man you went all out on this one!
Congrats on 700 and keep 'em coming.

Anonymous said...

Great work Chops. Awesome post. Here`s to the next 700!

Chris said...

Wow... Time flies! 700 posts deep and continually getting better and better. How many other sites can say the same? Congrats.

And, damn, what a post this one was. Amazing.

Templeton said...

Thanks YOU Chops. Super sick post #700.

SPRNTRL said...

Time for us to get sentimental and tell you THANKS so much for keeping us all reminded of these amazing places and times that have molded all of us into who we are today. I dont know what I would do without this site, for real.....

Royce said...

Thanks E!

Dave said...

Much respect, Chops. You've done a ton for skateboarding. It's fantastic to relive so many different eras through this blog.

I absolutely love the Kelch quote. I never had the chance to skate EMB. I only got a chance to walk through it a few times, sans board. But regardless, Kelch's quote paints a picture that I think all skate rats can relate to. On a macro level, EMB was a mecca, and is, in some respects, unparalleled by any other "plaza," in that it shaped the modern era of skateboarding. So much progress and creativity went down there, much of which we will only hear generalized recounts.

But on a micro level, it was, like Kelch said, a wonderland; A place where you kicked it with your homies, skated all day; the spots you dreamed about during school hours; where you spent much of your developmental years as a youth and you always knew you could go there and meet up with all your friends. It was your home away from home. I think most kids had something a spot like that growing up (I know I did), it just wasn't anywhere near as perfect as EMB.

To me, this quote takes me back to my little city, hanging with my boys all day, skating our local spots, and being so carefree. I think that feeling is universal among skateboarders. Years and years later, those are some of the fondest memories of my life.

dj twit said...

great post. keep up the good work!

Jeff Thorburn said...

wow, 700 man. Congratulations and thank you so much. I appreciate all the memory refreshers as well as history lessons.

justin said...

Congrats on making it to 700. A massive EMB feature seems the best way to mark the occasion. Keep up the great work.

K said...

Three cheers for Chops!

Chrome Ball is by far my favorite website to read at work. You've helped a dude get through many a tough workday. Reconnected with a lot of great memories.

Dave said...

Def co-sign what K is saying!

Anonymous said...

I love that Speyer is listed as an unnamed ripper!

Anonymous said...

excuse me, unidentified flying ace!

Anonymous said...

i took my shop team to sf a while back. we stopped by what's now left of emb. they're all too young to have known its impact. i let them know quite simply that "modern street skateboarding as you know it was born here. tricks, attitude and style. right fucking here!"

Joshua said...

Really great post, enjoyed the whole thing.

Jeremy said...

Congratulations on 700...

Your daily posts take me back to both a golden age in skateboarding and my life in general. Keep doing what you do, and here's to 700 more

William said...

fucking sick post.

You happen to have a better scan of that sanch/cardiel picture? it's so rad

Anonymous said...

Amazing way to celebrate the 700th post! Such a sentimental feeling when I think back to those days. They had such a huge influence on me as I was roughly the same age as all those guys then and by that point skateboarding had taken over everything in my life.
Those guys had such a huge influence on modern skateboarding and pushed it's progression more than many. Sadly I never experienced EMB in those great times but did get to walk across those legendary red bricks years later which still made a dream come true. Even today with almost 23 years of skating under my belt so far, those days will never be beaten even though there's some seriously heavy competition!
Keep up the amazing work Eric and look forward to the next 700!

Anonymous said...

Long time reader, first time posting. This blog is the best skateboard related thing on the web, straight up! Keep it up Chops!

Damian said...

Congrats mate! Such a good site. If there are any key issues your missing of transworld, thrasher, slap or poweredge let me know might be able to track them down in my collection. Happy to donate...

Cheers.

Anonymous said...

i'm loving that jim thiebaud f/s ollie

E.RICKS said...

YEAH BUDDY!!! THANKS CHOPS FOR ADDING ME IN THIS COLLAGE...
KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!!!

Pagoda said...

Yeah Chops! I was looking forward to this all weekend. Thank you. My friend worked at Justin Herman Plaza last summer for a zip line.

r. dahl said...

wow. that was like, 10 commandments epic. i never use that word but it's the only way to describe that post. congrats on 700! thanks for bringin back that feeling and those memories every time.

Keith said...

Congrats on 700 E! Glad you didn't pull the plug last fall.

The Speyer unidentified flying ace sequence is awesome!

Love the Natas and Gonz dubs.

Carroll nose wheelie with the braids is such a classic photo.

Sanch bs nb slide was on my wall for years. Same with that over turned fs 180 fakie crooked 5-0.

fs shove the Gonz by Swindell is nuts.

Just so many good pics in this one. Definitely a historic spot that should never be forgotten. Isn't there a documentary in the works?

I had the opportunity to skate Embarcadero in the summer of 1991 between grade 11 and 12. Saw lots of pros and soon-to-be pros. It was super intimidating to skate there. I was definitely nervous. I think my friend and I got a bit of a pass with the locals because we were with one of the frequent visitors who was down.

Anonymous said...

One more:

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-lrHJrJpmyxY/Tb9jr8_UwDI/AAAAAAAANr4/X0hKjG7n2AY/s1600/notjeremerogers.jpg

Anonymous said...

best thing on the internet.

if you and i ever meet, drinks are on me.

-deepconcentration

chops said...

thanks everyone.

ATM, I think those Heel Bruise shirts have been gone for a minute. Sorry, man. I might have something in the works in the near future though.

Thanks Jaime.

Big up Sprntl, you've done more than your fair share of keeping this site going. thank you.

Yeah Dave, i didn't get out to EMB until much later on... but just rolling around it still gave me goosebumps.

Keep doing your thing, Justin. Vert is Dead kills.

Thanks for all the support over the years, K.

William, that Cards/Sanch/Jaycee picture was actually sent to me electronically so no, I don't have a better scan. All three of those dudes featured in there are personal faves. The two are obvious but Jaycee in the back is responsible for probably damn near half of my cbi interviews. so grateful to that dude.

Thanks for the offer, Damian. Rad.
Of course I had to include the homie E.Ricks!

Paul, when are you coming home?

Thanks R.Dahl.

Thanks for everything Keith.

Deepconcentration, I'm taking you up on that whenever I see you, homie.

Thank you everybody!

JayCee said...

Damn...this post brings back a lot of amazing memories for me. I was lucky enough to have witnessed a good portion of what went down in those pictures. Thanks for making this post such a special one.

I don't get to skate nearly as much as I would like these days. Work, family, obligations, life. It all makes it harder and harder to get out on my board. But I'll tell you one thing Chops...I look forward to each and every post you do. Cause it helps me remember how awesome skateboarding is, and I can't thank you enough for that.

JRog said...

Thank YOU Chops!

Congrats on #700!

Pep said...

Great post...by the time I was old enough to travel out to SF, EMB had just been destroyed, but the EMB vibe and attitude was a huge influence on me growing up and our little crew back in the day made an EMB outta our own local skatespot.
700 posts...keep it up!
Thanks!

Alex Valich said...

Love the site. This has been one of the best sites to remember what skateboarding has meant for me.

FamilyMeeting7 said...

Thank you so much for this post as well as the first 699. If CBI didn't exist, I would've never found links to such classic skate parts such as Jovontae's "Love Child" part or Markovich's "Fight Fire With Fire" part, as well as many others. This blog has given me a much larger appreciation for the skateboarding of yesteryear than I ever had before, and #700 proved my point. If I had never seen the amount of coverage that EMB got in the mags, I would have never known truly what an impact it had on skateboarding. Thanks again and keep up the great work!

Lance Dawes said...

Great job Chrome Ball. Those were the days.