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Ted Emmer resurfaces, ready to ride

12 10 2019

Ted Emmer’s been called a freestyle pioneer (by me and this blog at least) ever since he made his imprint on the world of freestyle and skatepark riding with his iconic picture in the first issue of Freestylin’ back in the day.

For me, that picture really stood out…for many reasons.

Ted Emmer

First off, he’s competing in a skatepark competition on a 24″ cruiser…and we’re not talking a new school 24…he’s essentially on a converted race cruiser.

Second, those wheels! Custom 71(!) spoke Z-rims….48-spoke wheels hadn’t even become a thing yet at this point and ol’ Ted Emmer is jumping all the way up to 71 spokes (the 72nd spoke wouldn’t work because of the valve stem being in the way, if memory serves).

But what happened to Ted Emmer since that iconic photo?

Sure, we gave him some love with the occasional ThursdayThrowback or FridayFlashback ….but I always wondered what became of this trailblazer.

Imagine my surprise, when I got a message from Mr. Emmer himself earlier this week that simply said,

“I restored a bike you might be interested in”

(In my head) <Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat?>

(Me)”The bike….from bitd?”

“Indeed”

Then the pictures came.

Sure enough, there was the iconic 24, along with the OG riding gear.

 

Pretty awesome….but I had to ask…what happened to the custom Z-rims?

Turns out they got stolen out of a storage locker….which is heartbreaking from a historical/BMX Nerd perspective. (However, Ted says he’ll whip up another set if he can get a hold of another set of 24″ Z-rims.). So the mags are on there now.

So what’s Ted been up to?

Ted’s is a drummer and rocked out in Hollywood during the hair metal years.

Fast forward to  the (almost) present and a series of events led him to getting the bike back together and riding.

He lost his wife a few years ago which got him thinking about reconnecting with biking. Then, a designer he was working with learning about his BMX roots and together they started digging through storage and decided to bring some of his stuff back to life. (The Wall to Wall Freestyle book was a nudge too). Then the restoration began and you can see the final results.

 

Ted’s now 54 and says “he’s starting from scratch again” with his riding. He’s been riding a small skatepark near his place to get his feet wet.

He’s already got some war wounds to show for his efforts. (see above)

Next on the agenda, a new helmet and a bigger park.

And after that?

Ted’s says his goal is “A sick photo with me, a bike, and sky.”

I like where this is going.

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Back when I was a zine fiend

24 07 2014

It all started innocently enough.

Back in the late 80s/early 90s, Freestylin’ magazine would run articles on zines (small, indy-style, xeroxed publications) that riders were producing for their local scenes.

I was intrigued by them and managed to get a few through the mail. It was cool seeing the different scenes out there and the unique ways that people would put stuff together.

Time passed and one summer, while catching a freestyle team doing a bike shop tour (was it Haro, GT? I can’t remember…) someone handed my a copy of the iconic AGGRO RAG zine.

Wow.

I was blown away.

It was so good.

I had to get in on this action.

I quickly started amassing pictures, images and anything else I could think of.

I threw it together old-school style with scissors and glue-stick and took it off to a local printer to do a print run.

zines

I handed them out whereever I could, mailed them off to people and even sent a few off to the big mags at the time, GO and BMX Plus.

Then…nothing

I’m not sure what I expected at that point but I was hoping for some kind of response. I heard back from a few people that they liked it but that was it.

A few months passed.

Then…out of the blue…I started getting multiple letters a day for people asking about the zine (remember this was before email took off). I couldn’t figure out why.

Then finally, someone gave me a clue…”I read your letter in BMX Plus!

BMX Plus! had printed my letter, address and all, and people were into checking out my little old zine.

I was stoked.

And then I realized I had to make issue #2.

That started off a 6-year journey of sporadic publishing, writing about contests and crazy road trips and all the associated shenanigans that come with it.

It was  a good time.

I miss it sometimes.





How can you not love this vid?

7 04 2010

I smile every time I watch this….really what’s not to like?

Jam packed with 80s freestyle legends, Jon Faure shredding on his cruiser, a weird close-up of Wade Nelson and a quirky soundtrack.

The soundtrack alone takes me right back to my teenage years when I used to read BMX Action and Freestylin’ cover to cover.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Old School BMX Reunion 2010“, posted with vodpod