What does it mean to be the GOAT at something, or close to it? What if you were a GOAT-like-man-entity being, and employed your implicit goateed-ness for personal gain? At some point, your renown outright eclipses that pursuit, which then eventually leads to immediate character association in the minds of the public. Take Jordan and balls, Hawk and boards, Zamfir and the pan flute.

Is this necessarily a bad thing? Selling on the backs of masterful showmen certainly makes more sense than whittling a pitch from a shy, average sapling, or a decaying, stiff geriatric- but those are said to work too -- solely on the basis of relatability.

Is Tony Hawk really the best skateboarder ever there was and deserving of an unlimited supply of Egg McMuffins for all eternity? A majority of skateboardists- "core" or otherwise, might definitely disagree -- but McDonald's PR wouldn't. However, the team is clearly dismissive of Tony's ruinous touch on that fateful 9: as marketeering uninitiatedanados, they don't understand landings. But why would they? For a generation or more, skateboarding has mostly been Pro Skater and barely Rodney Mullen, thanks to highly efficient brandname machinery tasked with converting pulp to paper. Versace Plug0 clones the world over simply don't have a choice about strangers' Hawkman mental imagery when they mention le skateboard lifestyle.

Truth be told: goateed-ness is purely a marketing construction, although exceptional skills or achievements are required- at least during the beginning phases of personality cultivation.

Can demiGOAT overbearance eventually begin to sclerotise and/or irreparably damage the character of said activity for its participants, wherein the top dawgzs' outsized brand definitions effectively define acceptability in everything from gear to moves and fashion to coffee? Possibly for as long as one such goateed entity plays an active role in marketing, internal or otherwise. And if "real" pan flautists don't think much of the Zamfiric solo, they're probably pissed bout how their artistic discipline has been reduced to a clownish parody for one man's commercial cashmoney sake. Then again, maybe they were happy just to receive some sunlight at all- especially when selling something banal [entirely via coattails].1

Fortunately, hardcore aggressive inline rollerblade skating has been mostly devoid of these charismatic god-hero-cum-sales-pitch sequoias. Sure, you've got your Alros and Tarmac CEs, who can/do show up at a public event after years of absence to crowd excitement and autographic fanfare, but they haven't exerted any sustained, direct influence over growth for ~15-20 years- since around the point at which externally cultivated marketing money happy tree2-derived contracts shriveled up entirely. Haffey and Aragon were planted and ready to become mainstream lumber3 but their circus-like exploits were so far beyond the median as to have become completely unrelatable, and the funding dust bowl that coincided with their respective career apexes killed the dream altogether.

No, the closest thing to personality cult-driven marketing in 2021 blading is JJ/THEM, and while subculturally dominant, surely isn't the end-all, be-all. It's simply the only marketeering project currently capable of pulling off this approach, and it doesn't rely on the typical showboat/ringmaster/big man zeal to move the merch. It's a soft sell with an emotional angle that doesn't overtly push and rely on JJ's persona, but it is omnipresent as a tiny reminder on every supporting piece as a cred stamp of approval. Nevertheless, it's just an important attribute of the overall sales programme, and "THEM" would become confused with "that rollerblade coffee" long before "JJ" ever entered into the minds of ladies' boutique shoppers picking up their Beerish wheeled fashion boots.4

The skateboarding tree grows a new McMuffin-filled lambo appendage for Tony if he wants it: nevermind the persistent poison dosing for cool guy martial artists keeping it real in the game.


  • Today's Coolest Young Skateboarder. Thanks for the reference go to @safetygrab (that's safetygrab WITHOUT an 'n'): I don't have the tools to verify this characterization's accuracy/trolling but it seems to check out, naw'm'sayin'
  • This is the true essence of the Barely Dead Battle Cry: it's all yore "community" responsibility to "bring it back" so that we can cash in, wherein we consists of anyone selling something remotely rollerbladerly niche-assigned.
  • Hoax II. Live it, love it, buy it, but don't bootleg it?
  • Sure, together they sold oodles worth of a dozen Sunshine pro skates to brainwashed boys, truly raking in the dough- but no nike press conferences or motion pictures.
  • Watch out. THEM sells coffee AND ladies' accessories!

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