The TWS 10 Presents… Battle Cries

As with any niche activity, certain words, slogans, and phrases have made their way into our everyday lives simply by skateboard-company interjection-our masses spraypainting them onto recently constructed ramps, penning them onto our schoolbook covers, or simply spreading them by word of mouth. Some have become timeless calls to arms, others have just become something to laugh about. At any rate, the following are some of the most memorable taglines we skateboarders have adopted to date.-Mackenzie Eisenhour

1. Skate Or Die!
As much a jock yelling-out-the-pickup-truck mainstay as a battle cry for our own soldiers, this black-and-white, all-or-nothing statement has at times been bastardized to the point of tone deafness. Nonetheless, there are certain days that every real skateboarder lives through, that exactly amount to the choice evoked in the three short words themselves.

2. Skateboarding Is Not A Crime
Santa Cruz can be credited with printing up the millions of stickers that launched these five words into mainstream immortality. The funniest part about the whole thing is that in 2006, nearly every civilized city on Earth-outside of a lucky few-have enacted legislature stating the exact opposite.

3. Shut Up And Skate
Succinct, to the point, and infinitely relevant at every communal skate gathering since somebody nailed roller skates to a plank and then had the curious kid next door play twenty questions with it. Zorlac Skateboards born and Texas reared, this little gem should run through your head every time you hit the local park and hear the knitting-circle chatter.

4. Ravers Suck
When Danny Way first donned this statement on a shirt in a Droors ad in the early 90s, the wardrobe choices in terms of size (a.k.a. Goofy Boy) and colors (a.k.a. purple Blind jeans) between ravers and skateboarders were perilously close. Droors assured skateboarders far and wide that we would not soon be sucking on pacifiers and inhaling Vicks under a blacklight.

5. I Love Cops
First appearing on a Laban Phedias Blockhead board, this little slogan was probably a surefire way to piss off the cops (yes, the police can detect sarcasm). Either way, while this may not be a battle cry for the ages, there’s little doubt it caused more than one comical situation when the po-po actually did roll up on it.

6. I Love Slayer
Plan B originally issued this shirt as a joke. But it somehow made its way into a hell of a lot of skaters’ closets. Rodney Mullen wore his for two whole video parts (Questionable and Virtual Reality) along with his “lucky” pants, believing the shirt was a good-luck charm. Ironically, most kids today would probably rock the shirt thinking it wasn’t a joke.

7. Skate And Destroy
Timeless, simple, and punk as f-k. This credo will strike a chord in skateboarding as long as we remain on the streets, in the trenches, and against the law. Skate And Create might embody a more positive-sounding message, but sometimes you just got to give in to some good old-fashioned destruction.

8. Listen To Black Sabbath
The first in a long line of Listen To Bob Marley, Listen To Yanni, Listen To Slayer, and Listen To Whatever Else shirts, this statement shirt made a big comeback when Big Brother first dropped the Sabbath one in ’01. They should’ve done a Listen To Stairway To Heaven Backwards shirt for good measure.

9. No Poseurs
Was there any launcher or mini in the 80s that didn’t have this rule clocked front and center on its face wall? The term “poseur” was as red hot as Molly Ringwald’s teenie-bopper movie career back then, and to be labeled one was almost worse than watching her flicks.

10. Support Your Local Skate Shop
With Sports Chalets and Wal-Marts selling professionally endorsed skateboard goods and skater-run skate shops worldwide being squeezed to near bankruptcy by their glossier multimillion-dollar incorporated counterparts, now is a time–more than ever-to think twice about where you ask Mom to go to buy that next setup.