My name is J. Hayes, and I longboard NYC. I am a red-bearded menace that joins the throbbing pulse of commuters furiously coursing through the streets of New York City. I am 27, and never stepped foot on a board until last year. I was living in Washington Heights, and recovering from a hernia operation. I was determined to strengthen my lower body, and avoid having to deal with a pear-sized bulge where my intestines burst through a tear in my stomach lining (looking something like these fellows).
New York City is a place where walking is a way of life, and I was getting fed up with how slow I moved through the city. There were several options one could take to become a faster commuter:
- Bike– I had been there and done that, my apartment was rather cozy and space was at a premium, and I didn’t want to grow dreadlocks.
- In-line Skates– You know what the hardest part about rollerblading is? Telling your parents you’re gay. Plus I didn’t own nearly enough fuchsia spandex leotards.
- Longboard– fast, fun & portable
My roommate Q’bn and I unequivocally decided to don longboards. Uptown Manhattan is incredibly hilly, so longboarding proved to be a great source of exercise and strength training. Furthermore, being small enough to easily carry on the subway or bus, it is the perfect hybrid with public transportation. I ride the train and my board every day, and have found it to be versatile and useful in ways I never expected. I use it as a dolly to move heavy objects, as a table to eat my chicken mole burritos from Puebla Mexicana, a chair to sit on, and as a weapon to ward off hordes of ravenous pigeons intent on feasting on the tender flesh of one’s eyeballs.
I started this blog because aside from the Bustin’ Blog, there wasn’t much on the interweb about longboarding in NYC. I ride with some pretty crazy dudes, and I wanted an opportunity to chronicle some of our escapades, share some insights on customizing your board, suggest some great routes to ride, and become a general resource for longboarders in and around New York City. Get involved by commenting, emailing me, contributing ideas and maps, and become a part of the longboard commuter revolution in NYC.