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Over the past several years of Amazing Strangers I have attempted to verbally illustrate to you the details of each of the several groups which commune at Union Square South. The Gravers, Scenesters, Junkies have all had their dissection in full portrait. So now it is time for...

1. Upturned sun visor. Skater's have many distictive traits, one of which is the upturned sun visor. It is meant to make the skater's head look like an upside down duck head. It's easy to do this wrong and look like an idiot, but the skater to the right is doing it perfectly.
2. Typical face of a Skater >> scruffy, gnashing teeth, beedy-eyed mug that only Aphex Twin could love.
3. Chest hair. Lots and lots of chest hair. In fact, there's hair everywhere, tits, belly, back, ass. Skater's are all about the body hair everywhere!
4. State-trooper shades hung on the collar for easy reach and casual, laid-back appearance.
5. Wrist sweatband to match shirt. Wristbands help keep sweat from dripping off onto your board while you're hangin' out. This is important because an authentic skater spends a lot of time standing with board in hand.
6. Partial-tuck of shirt in front of belt. This is to show off belt buckle even if the buckle is just a rope knot, or a stone set bolo tie, or mother's earring.
authentic skater
7. Long Board. True skaters ride long boards.
8. Cutoff khakis. Most skater's generally agree, cuttoff khakis or cutoff dress slacks are standard.
9. Pink V-neck tee. The draping pink V-neck tee is a staple in the skater wardrobe. When V-neck isn't available, dangle glasses from collar for similar effect.
10. Flip flops. Every NYC skater knows this. It's so basic. If you're skatin' you're wearin' your flip flops. A no brainer.


authentic skater
Photo by Normal Bob

Authentic New York City skateboarder. Head to toe standards. See diagram above for details.

Photo by Normal Bob

Hooray! Pink and fun raverness youth, young and chipper without a care in the world marchin' down the avenue in happy shoes a Rainbow Bright in the flesh! And it's never ever gonna go away, ever! Because.....

Photo by Normal Bob

...You don't hafta lose any of the color after you go grey!

Well um, you kinda do, because no one's gonna love you as much when you get old, which makes your soul shrink up into a dry, ashy raison, and you can't tie yarn to an ashy raison. Go ahead and try. You'll lose. We all do.

Photo by Normal Bob

Is this not just the cutest thing you've ever seen? Seriously, it's almost too adorable, like "Punky Brewster/Little Orphan Annie & Sandy" precious.

And you know how you're already thinkin' it couldn't get any more sweet and/or darling? What if I were to tell you that she is also homeless? See!? I did it! I made you coo.

I get a point.

Photo by Normal Bob

All right, you got me. I've been caught, and she was being really cute when she caught me, but I was seriously just gonna say that this Scenette was so adorable, and sweet, and all that kind of stuff! And I was gonna talk about how the Scenester crowd has really thinned out since last I spoke, and how when it's just a couple of 'em hangin' out like this it's a lot easier on the eyes than when they're a pulsating mass, multiplying like a rancid rat's nest at the corner of the park.

I suppose I forfeit my point.

Photo by Normal Bob

Hey! There's another new Peepers on the block and he's pickin' up right where Peepers Senior left off! And he's good.

Photo by Normal Bob

He's an "Up-skirt Peepers" (which counters Peepers Sr "Down-shirt peeping") and he's got an eagle-eye for underpants! "PEEP PEEP PEEP" goes the Peepers!

Photo by Normal Bob

Peep to the East
Peep to the West
Even Peepin' at the Scenette
Who was shakin' her fist

Photo by Normal Bob

I know what you're thinkin'. You're sayin' to yourself: "Uh oh! Bob's gonna totally rip on this one, and once again I'm gonna hafta make up more excuses for how Bob can both say he loves all of mankind and at the same time trash some poor lady's outfit on laundry day," but think again, dear reader!

I'm not sure if it's just because I'm havin' such a great weekend, or perhaps it's because I haven't gotten any in a while, but whatever it is I give a "thumb's up" to this! It's exactly what I'd be doin' if I were her.

Seriously. If instead, she had on a pair of roller skates my adoration would be obvious. I'm just saying, there's a method to the madness.

skater bob foes
Movies by Normal Bob

So Skater Bob's skatin' at Union and he rolls past this family walkin' up Union Sq. East, and one of the kids in the family shouts shit at him, so Bob waves the middle finger at him, and the kid's mother flies into a rage, so Bob tells her to "take it to the hood," and she calls him a white devil, to which Bob gives her the tongue and...

You know what? I'll just let Skater Bob tell it.

Movie by Normal Bob

What better way to end another happy page of Amazing Strangers than with a little girl on mega-stilts?

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© 2012 All photos and videos are property of
Insults written strangely are describing strangers I have to see every single day and I don't want them to be sure what it means either.

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