Hesh, if you’ve been skateboarding a while you’ll know what Hesh is, or you’ll have your own version of what you imagine Hesh to be. For those of you not familiar with the term Hesh I’ll give you my version of Hesh. I say “my version” because as I began writing this I thought “I know what I’d call Hesh, but is what I call Hesh the same as what everyone else calls Hesh?”. So I had a bit dig around on the internet, as you do, and found that at the core of it I’m thinking more or less the same as everyone else, give or take a few differences. Here is what I have Hesh down as….
If I was looking for someone Hesh they would probably have a mesh-back trucker style cap, baseball T-shirt with the 3 quarter length sleeves, camo-shorts or cut-off jeans, socks pulled right up, a board over 8.2′ wide and 62mm wheels. He’d be old enough to grow an epic beard and might proudly sport one, just cos he can. Sometimes the baseball T-shirt might be replaced by a music T-shirt with the sleeves and neck cut out. He probably owns at least 2 albums of either Black Flag or Bad Brains, or both, on vinyl. Most likely enjoys ripping the bowl, all day, knee and elbow pads optional. Full sleeve tattoos also optional.
Those are fairly stereotypical Hesh things to look for as far as fashion goes, but that does’t mean that’s all it takes to be Hesh. You could in fact be Hesh being only one or even none of the afore metioned attributes (although chances are it would be safe to assume that you would fall into the Hesh category or at least wish you were Hesh). For me, to be truly Hesh, the important elements are skating really fast and having absolutely no fear of any obstacle. Both of these are probably as important as each other, you can’t have one without the other. You have to be able to go full steam ahead at everything, even if it’s just a regular curb, so fast in fact that it instantaneously rips the arse out of your jeans on the first bail, a bail which always looks super gnarly but does’t seem to cause any real injury. Having the distinct lack of personal safety is what allows for the faster-than-light speed. But, as I would look at a gnarly obstacle and think “I bet someone could do that” someone with the fearlessness of rabid dog on amphetamines wouldn’t even think about it and already be having a go before anyone else.
Well, that’s my take on being Hesh, maybe it’s a little different to yours. When I was looking through the internet there were some funny opinions as to what Hesh is. A few people’s definitions on the Urban Dictionary were quite amusing. People seem to associate hesh with a fear of all things relative to personal hygiene. I guess some people think that to be Hesh you must have clothes that look like you’ve slept in them for weeks, hair that has its own self-sustainable eco-system and a skillful avoidance of soap and razors. I’m not altogether sure that’s true for everyone Hesh but I’ll agree that there are some that definitely fit the bill. A few talk about how if you call yourself Hesh it negates your Heshness, kinda like cool people are just cool, but trying to be cool is un-cool. Or maybe like how an insane person doesn’t know they’re insane and anyone claiming to be insane must have enough sanity so claim madness, or something.
I’ll leave you now with some video parts of who I think are Hesh riders.
First up, Duane Peters, original Hesh rider, fits the stereotype almost exactly, always shredding the pool, also has his own Hardcore Punk band and genuinely does not seem to give a monkeys about anything.
Tony Trujillo, pure ripper, seems able to turn up at any park fresh from the tour van and instantaneously find the gnarliest line and blowing all the Park Heros out of the water.
Next, David Gravette, a younger guy, maybe too young to appreciate Black Flag and Bad Brains but definitely got the attitude.
Last up, John Cardiel, probably not fitting the stereotype so much but the way he skates is so Hesh, will hit anything and everything at full tilt.
I could keep posting more but there’s not enough hours in the day, if you want to look for more search for just about anyone on Antihero, Consolidated and Creature Skateboards, most of the Death Skateboards team and half of the Volcom riders, that’ll keep you entertained for the day.