The Internet is a strange and fascinating place where you can find anything from groceries to guns and have them shipped to your front door without ever putting on pants. At the epicenter of the weirdness is Craiglist. In 1995, a balding computer programmer began developing something known as a “computer commune.” Within five years, the web site had its classified pages in more than 700 cities.
As you are probably aware, Craigslist caters to a broad range of categories that have everything from part time jobs to listings of guys selling used Fleshlights, within miles of your home. There is basically no end to the stream of weirdness that you can find on the classifieds site.
Now, there is the slight chance that you could be killed, molested or both when you go to meet the person selling the “Slightly used skate board with some scratches ($45)” but that’s got to be a chance you’re willing to take.
As a novice Craigslister, I like to put the words “Skate,” “Skate board” and “Skateboard” in the query just to see what pops up. To my surprise, there are occasionally some pretty good finds. Since then, I’ve been cruising the website, discovering bizarre variations of skateboards and items locals are trying to sell.
As if the general public didn’t think skateboarding was dangerous enough, some dipshit started putting weedwacker engines on ‘em. These boards come in all shapes and sizes; small companies make some while others are homemade, but all of them are ridiculous. This one came with the following description:
“Faster than a bell clapper in a goose’s ass. I don’t know what that means either, but come take a ride on it and you’ll see what I mean. Slightly terrifying kid’s toy from back when we were allowed to have fun and social services wouldn’t show up for a few cuts and bruises. We will however, be requiring you to sign a waiver. I’m sure you understand. Stop by and have a look, get ready for the ride of your life!”
2. Dad’s Weekend Project Turned Dust Collector
These are the most depressing posts on Craigslist. A parent who probably has no knowledge of skateboarding who takes a whack at building a quality obstacle only to find out that Little Timmy wants to play roller hockey. Whether you’re talking about a 4 ft. mini ramp or a grind rail that Pops welded together in the garage, it’s awesome to see the amount of hard work that went into some of these ramps. Unfortunately, the transition is almost always bogus or the frames weren’t built right or the coping is made from aluminum.
3. The Overpriced “Art Deck”
Whether you are looking in the Miscellaneous or Art sections of Craigslist, you are likely to find a handful of “Works of art.” Most of these are crappy acrylic or oil paintings that were done by some stoner who used to longboard. Occasionally you find a few prints like this one that look like they ripped off an old Zoo York deck. Don’t be surprised to see some price tags that ask for more than $600 for something that that you couldn’t even pay me to hang on my wall.
4. “Gnarly” Skate Furniture
When I was in elementary school, I had a racecar bed. It was the coolest thing ever. It was made from fiberglass and would scratch your arm if you rubbed against the side, leaving an itchy rash for you while you tried to sleep. Apparently racecar beds aren’t popular any more and skate furniture is taking its place. Hat racks made from trucks, halfpipe beds with coping and dresser drawers that have cruiser boards screwed on for handles are now the newest way for art school dropouts to try and make some quick cash.
5. Straight Trash
We’ve all heard the saying “One man’s trash is another’s treasure.” However, this quote only refers to things that people are throwing away. On Craigslist there are people that are trying to sell wheels that are worn down to 35mm and decks that have been left outside for years. Forget about stress cracks or blown out bearings, there is some straight up trash that people will try to convince you is “a steal” for $75.
6. Unskateable Rails & Ramps
In addition to hundreds of X-Games plastic kicker ramps that are in every scooter kid’s driveway, there is an endless supply of homemade ankle breakers that you can buy for chump change. Built from stolen construction site lumber, cheap PVC pipes and a box of old nails, it’s not surprising that many of these obstacles come with the tag “Barely Skated.”
7. The Diamond in the Rough
Unfortunately, this is the least likely item to find on Craigslist. Yet, among all the junk, scams, and worthless skateboard items, there are still a few needles in the haystack. The kid who never rode his Christmas present, the OG Vision complete and the complete VHS collection of every skateboard video from 1991-99 is out there, it just takes some searching.
Whether you are looking for skateboards, video games or used cars on Craigslist, it’s important to set boundaries within your own financial means. A few weeks ago, I was looking for some soft wheels to throw on a cruiser board. I was hoping to find a beat up longboard on the cheap, but then I came across a mountain board with air tires and snowboard bindings. For the record, there are no hills anywhere near my house and the closest mountain is more than three states away, but for $40 it seemed stupid not to buy it. It’s these dumb impulse purchases that make it likely that I’ll be the next person on Craigslist selling weird skate stuff.