If you read the letter above, your first instinct was that it was a fake. And it most certainly is-however, the message of the letter is real. We just changed the names to protect the innocent-us, I suppose. This notice came on official letterhead from a school district in Southern California warning TransWorld SKATEboarding to not publish any more photos at a particular school “without prior knowledge or written consent.” It’s official-our first “cease and desist.”
I thought that the cease and desist title was reserved for skate companies in the 90s, borrowing every logo from 7Eleven and Goodwill to the Church Of Scientology’s Dianetics (in 1991 World Industries actually was issued a C and D for Randy Colvin’s Colvinetics and Goodwill boards) for its deck graphics. But in those days, maybe a couple hundred decks were made, so it didn’t really matter. There were a lot of great graphics borrowed from corporate giants. Burger King issued a C and D for the Blind Jason Lee Burger board, but it’s these kinds of boards fueling the skateboard-deck auctions on eBay, driving the price of some decks into the thousands.
Maybe the school district thinks that if we stop publishing photos from said school that skateboarding will not take place there anymore. Lucky for them, the number of possible tricks available to skaters is limited, so that spot will eventually die on its own-at least for the purpose of running a unique photo of a trick that’s never been done in this magazine. But unfortunately, at least the last time I checked, just because a spot’s closed to the magazine doesn’t keep skaters from seeking out famous spots and trying their luck for themselves.
I wonder if we, the public, could issue Cease and Desists to school principals and school superintendents to stop wasting public funds on their inflated salaries and for once stop thinking about advancing their political careers and instead get them to reinstate physical education, art, and music back into school programs. But why would we want to do that? It might actually benefit society farther down the road. Maybe that paragraph’s a little too political for a skateboard magazine, but it’s real life.
This is skateboarding. And documented or not, skateboarding will continue to happen-it all starts with one push.-Eric Sentianin