Even to the King of Consistency, at the end of the day, you’ve simply got to leave it to the gods, components, whatever unnamed force turns the tides. “I put a lot of pressure on myself,” Huston shows, “but I mean, I never go out in the contest expecting to win because of the difficulty and the technicality of the tricks we’re doing out there. There’s so much that goes into landing those tricks. It’s very easy to… not even have a bad day… but just have one slight, little mess-up and not land your trick, you know? It’s a constant battle as a skateboarder.”
I’d presume regarding blame America’s sue-happy nature. Between helicopter moms and dads, homeowner, and aggro polices, I tremble to think about the variety of skate-related claims and court looks jamming up the legal system throughout the nation. As long as skating in public is snubbed and relegated to designated locations like cigarette smoking, the remainder of the world is going to capture up. As much of a beacon for flexibility as America is, it sure does dislike skateboarding and all it represents.
That leaves little reason for Huston, however, blessed with an indoor skate park all his own not far from his $3 million Laguna Beach estate and all the support Nike can provide. But millionaire skater or not, a bad day is a bad day. And it’s tough not to chalk it as much as the positioning of the stars. To Huston’s credit, he’s not purchasing into $40,000 New Age crystals to embellish his house like the swaths of SoCal’s uber-rich.
Though there’s an extreme magic to skateboarding and how it cleans, he keeps his routines basic. “I like spending a lot of time outside. A lot of hiking. I ride dirt bikes. That’s my favorite thing to do, aside from skateboarding. Being out in nature… That’s where I find a lot of mental clarity and kind of calm the mind, and it makes you just thankful for life.”
The spirit of skating genuinely lies beyond designated limits, and in the improvised art of doing techniques on any surface area, at any time, any location. The pureness isn’t lost on Huston. “I did a lot of street skating and filming last year and just rolling away from some of those tricks. Those are some of the most important moments for me because those are like, that’s real skateboarding right there. Skating stuff that isn’t meant to be skated on, skating massive rails that you could literally die trying, but that alone goes to show how much love and passion we have for this. Because we’re down to risk it all.”
Even with years of repeating, like the movements of rolling dice, the outcomes can still be magic. “What’s magical to me are the moments when we’ve tried tricks for hours and then just randomly landed out of nowhere. A lot of the time, it’s very unexpected. You won’t expect to land it, and then all of a sudden, next thing you know, you’re just rolling away. You’re like, ‘Damn, I’ll probably never do that trick again.’ Those are some of the best moments in skating, the shock of landing some crazy trick. So yeah, it definitely feels like magic sometimes.”
Not unlike capturing a best wave. And no matter just how much prepping, just how much practicing you do, the gleaming spontaneity of managing the amazing brings a childish glee to even the most masterly. For some, skating is the eternal youth. “It’s never ending with skating because it’s constant progression—mixing tricks into other tricks and tricks out. It’s endless.”