"The Impossible" Book

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Title The Impossible
Subtitle Rodney Mullen, Ryan Sheckler, And The Fantastic History Of Skateboarding
Author Cole Louison
Format Paperback, Kindle
Pages 304 pages
Publisher Lyons Press
Published July 19, 2011
Language English
ISBN-10 0762770260
ISBN-13 9780762770267
Print Status In Print
Special Features 5.5" x 0.8" x 8"

The Impossible covers the most significant milestones of skateboarding's history and culture, and highlights the careers of some of the sport's most influential skaters, namely Rodney Mullen and Ryan Sheckler. Much of Rodney Mullen's story can be found in his autobiography, "The Mutt", but there are quite a few new details that I hadn't seen before. A very enjoyable read.

Table of Contents

  1. There's This Kid
  2. An Easy History of Skateboarding, Then Another One
  3. Rodney Mullen's Genius Roots and Femoral Anteversion
  4. Tony Hawk Doesn't Know When He Started Skating
  5. What're Ya Cryin' About
  6. Rolling Into Stacy Peralta, and The Strangest Day of My Life
  7. Gunite, Snake Runs, and the Late Great '70s Skateparks
  8. Technial Reinvention of the 1970's, or How Mitch Hedberg Did Not Give Urethane Wheels to Emil Hersh in Heath Ledger's Skate Shop
  9. Dogtown, Stecyk, and the Business of Skate Media
  10. Ollieburgers, A World Championship, and the Skinniest Person I Have Ever Seen
  11. Unable to do Anything, Magic Mountain, V.C. Johnson, and the Chess King
  12. The Golden Age of Skateboarding, or Tony Hawk Was Sixteen in 1984
  13. Rodney Invents and Wins Everything, and His Dad Makes Him Quit, Again
  14. Natas, Gonz, and the Birth of Street Skating
  15. The 1980's End, and Skaters Die and Go To Jail
  16. Rodney Nearly Dies in Sweden, and the Beginning of the 1990's
  17. Ryan Sheckler can Kickflip and He's Six Years Old
  18. The 1990's Regirth of Tech Skating, and Chris Haslam Makes P-Rod Crack Up
  19. Waist 66 Jeans and the Rise of World Industries
  20. The Insane Power of Television
  21. Mike V's Greatest Hits, or How Skating's Newfound Success Was Not So Successful
  22. The Best Skateboarder in the World is a Seventh Grader
  23. Rodney Rids His Body of Scar Tissue, and the First Stanceless Skater
  24. Life of Ryan
  25. "I Hate Sheckler," and the Exploding of Ryan's Right Foot
  26. Healing at the Berrics
  27. To Try and Talk to Shaun White and Ryan Sheckler
  28. Dew Tour Finals 2010
  29. Watching Sheckler Skate
  30. Watching Rodney Skate, or Switch Nollie Laserflip at Midnight
  • Many Thanks
  • Notes
  • Sources
  • Index
  • About the Author

From the Back Cover

Skateboarding: the background, technicality, culture, rebellion, marketing, conflict, and future of the global sport as seen through two of its most influential geniuses

Since it all began half a century ago, skateboarding has come to mystify some and to mesmerize many, including its tens of millions of adherents throughout America and the world. And yet, as ubiquitous as it is today, its origins, manners, and methods are little understood.

The Impossible aims to get skateboarding right. Journalist Cole Louison gets inside the history, culture, and major personalities of skating. He does solargely by recounting the careers of the sport’s Yoda—Rodney Mullen, who, in his mid-forties, remains the greatest skateboarder in the world, the godfather of all modern skateboarding tricks—and its Luke Skywalker—Ryan Sheckler, who became its youngest pro athlete and a celebrity at thirteen. The story begins in the 1960s, when the first boards made their way to land in the form of off-season surfing in southern California. It then follows the sport’s spikes, plateaus, and drops—including its billion-dollar apparel industry and its connection with art, fashion, and music.

In The Impossible, we come to know intimately not only skateboarding, but also two very different, equally fascinating geniuses who have shaped the sport more than anyone else.