Don’t Hate the Skate(rs)

Laura Kebby -

Lifestyle Opinion

I’ll start by saying I am definitely not the typical East Ender. In fact I am probably the type of East Ender that all other East Enders love to hate. I live in a crowded share house, an environment which according to some residents’ causes more noise than the supercars and every 2am catcall combined. I’m the type of person who prefers to live in the worst house on the best street, proximity is everything. Anyway, the point. I wanted to jump the gun a little here and defend the skateboarders who fling themselves down Watt street regularly. Offence is the best defence after all right?

The new road looks great, and what self respecting youth (or adult for that matter) wouldn’t want to jump on a board and fling themselves down a freshly tarred runway? It’s our dream and they are just living it and it also doesn’t happen all too often. I mean it took a major event for the council to even look into (gentrification) fixing up the road so this brand spanking opportunity might not come around again in our lifetime. I can already hear the whispers of residents along the lines of “you kids get off my east end” and “you can’t do that here it’s a public place”. But where is the lie. We keep telling kids to get out of the house and go and play outside “like the good old days” and now that they finally are, it’s labelled as a bit of an inconvenience. Sure I’m not exactly encouraging the fact that people are flinging themselves down the hill into sometimes oncoming traffic but who am I to complain that the East End actually feels like it’s meant to – full of life.

The road itself, being Watt Street, is literally purpose built to maximise speed and ease of transportation, which is funny when you think about it that way right? That one of the major roads in town has been purposefully modified so that vehicles can travel as fast as they can, with as much ease as they can. And lets be honest, the skateboarders, at least the ones I’ve come across, are probably going to be more courteous than the hordes of sweaty supercar fanatics throwing half empty mid strength beer cans onto the street, (stereotype, yes, but it goes both ways).

I just thought I’d step in, before anyone else does simply to say ‘the kids are alright’, and deep down I know we’re all wishing we had that kind of guts and tenacity to hurl ourselves down a hill and not have to think of the consequences.

If it's on in Newcastle, it's on Newcastle Live

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