The Finn night was great and Mick ended it perfectly by making some very technical and gnarly ollie to boardslide thing on the extension (i’m not sure what it should be called).
Finn went all the way back to Pymble, except he started as a roller skater. He was a grommie to me then and I didn’t really get to know him until much later. But the way I got to know him was a typical indication of the spirit of Finn. It also connects with another Oz skate video, Johnnie Goes Off.
It was the early to mid 90s. I hadn’t been part of skating for more than a decade, but I bumped into Fox somewhere and got invited to the launching of his new vid. I turned up to a room full of 80s and 90s skaters who didn’t know me from a bar of soap (later I found Errol and Dave Mock). Finn was clearly some shit-hot pro skater and the absolute life of the party. I didn’t recognise him at all, but he recognised me from Pymble and Skate City. He came running across the room and embraced me while screaming ‘Bill Schaffer, You Were a God!’ so everyone could hear.
I’m not saying this because I want anyone to think I was ever a God (I’m sure you all know I was never more than a mere mortal and a fairly borfish one at that). But it shows how generous Finn could be. He must have seen me, recognised me, and seen that I felt kinda nervous and unsure if I belonged in this brave new world of modern skating. So he way over-compensated to make me feel good. He was always like that with me - he was such a better skater by this time it isn’t worth talking about, but he’d turn up for a session with me at Maroubra any time (me and Errol sessioned with him 2 days before he died and I believe we were supposed to be going skating with him the day after).
Finn was also incredibly well-read, intelligent, funny (shit yeah!), friendly, and maybe too radical for life itself. Let us all SHRALP every day in his memory (and also in the memory of Matt Hoffman and Lopez).