Go Skateboarding Day is June 21 – New book recounts the birth of skate in San Diego
Published - 06/16/19 - 11:49 AM | 22820 views | 4 4 comments | 73 73 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dave Dominey surf style, Escondido Reservoir. © Lance Smith/Tracker Archive.
Dave Dominey surf style, Escondido Reservoir. © Lance Smith/Tracker Archive.
John O’Malley, Central Arizona Water Project. / Photo by Warren Bolster
John O’Malley, Central Arizona Water Project. / Photo by Warren Bolster
Did you ever wonder what catapulted skateboarding’s popularity into the stratosphere? Does history of a “sport,” born and bred along the coast of Southern California, coincide with your love of surfing? Are you “stoked” to know that skateboarding will be featured in Tokyo for the 2020 Summer Olympics?

If you’ve answered yes to any of the above questions, John O’Malley’s new book, “Urethane Revolution: The Birth of Skate-San Diego 1975,” is a must read. The always interesting, sometimes shocking, off-color page-turner dialogues the history of the skateboarding from one of its founding fathers, John O’Malley.

Dubbed the “greatest story never told in extreme sports history,” O’Malley retraces his steps as a member of the original Skunkworks crew to creating his own skateparks. Photographs – sure to make everyone reminisce about the good ole’ days – accompany stories from the underground.

“One crazy year on the California coast in 1975 a hippie skunkworks, bred in garages and shacks, launched the modern skater movement,” writes O’Malley. Strap in for a wild ride replete with two car chases, two plane crashes, a massive truck bomb, Colombian Narcos, the Mafia, senior White House staff, a gypsy fortuneteller, three straight-up miracles, Jacques Cousteau, big piles of cocaine and naked hippie chicks.”

O’Malley details the books title, “Urethane Revolution” beginning with the history behind the urethane.

“Around 1973, a guy named Frank Nasworthy discovered these urethane training wheels that were used on beginners’ roller skates,” he notes. “They were grippier than the unforgiving composite clay wheels of the day. Frank bolted them on his skateboard and bingo! Suction-cup traction like no one had ever imagined possible. It’s in that instant that the skateboard went from a toy with feet of clay to a wall-climbing UFO, screaming at warp speed to the 2020 Olympics.”

The Revolution follows suit.

“The Revolution began when a rift opened in the universe and that centrifugal buzz – heretofore available only through sports like surfing and skiing – came leaking out of the streets,” writes O’Malley. “Adrenaline rushing up your road, serotonin dripping down the drive. And the scales fell from our eyes: Any paved surface could be ridden. And the call went out: The rift has opened, God is great, spread the word.”

According to O’Malley, a perfect storm of “ill winds” that began with a historic drought fueled the Revolution.

“The drought uncovered insanely fun new skating forms like the reservoirs and drainage ditches while recession-vacant homes had their swimming pools drained and skated,” he pens. “Our eyes spoked an urban landscape lit up with a million new possibilities.”

“Urethane Revolution” also showcases La Jolla native Bobby Turner. The innovative craftsman built Turner Summer/Ski slalom skateboards. Still popular today, these boards are constructed along the design vein of surfboards and snow skis. According to O’Malley, Turner’s skateboards “revolutionized” slalom skating boards.

O’Malley touts, “The Revolution is over. Skaters won.”

And if you need a place to play, check out Robb Field; San Diego’s first skateboard park constructed and operated by the City. Designed with input from the legendary Tony Hawk, the 40,000 square foot concrete park is suitable for all ages and skill levels. Sidling the San Diego River Bike Path at the onset of Ocean Beach, the “street course” features a combination bowl, handrails, ledges, blocks, a pump bump and an octagon volcano.

Location: 2525 Bacon St.

Comments-icon Post a Comment
June 20, 2019
Revoked™ is proud to operate the local San Diego chapter of Skate for Change™.

Skate for Change™ is committed to providing service to the community, especially low income families and the homeless, through local efforts. The primary activity is the organization of skateboarding youth to distribute care and resources to those in underprivileged circumstances. Revoked™ donates skateboards to young kids as well as water and other goods which we distribute on the streets around our area and to the places we visit.

Skate for Change™ is seeking to have a dual impact. It provides service to those persons who are the recipients of the care, attention and meeting of needs on the streets. It also provides you with an opportunity to do something meaningful, provide service and purpose through their efforts.

If you'd like to support the cause please visit our website to view our skateboard deck designs.

Jessica Smith
June 17, 2019
After being in relationship with Wilson for seven years,he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to someone online and she suggested that I should contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that don’t believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I meant a spell caster called Dr Zuma zuk and I email him, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened, that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him, that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem and who is different from all the fake ones out there. Anybody could need the help of the spell caster, his email: [email protected] or call him 2348105150446

you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or anything. CONTACT HIM NOW FOR SOLUTION TO ALL YOUR PROBLEMS’
Mr. Wilson
June 21, 2019
Jessica, The spell wore off and I hit the road.
Ska B. Flow
June 17, 2019
Dave Dominy is correct, not Dave Dominey
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