GOOD

Watch: New Digital Short ‘Nora’ Highlights Adidas’ First Female Pro Skateboarder

Nora Vasconcellos is working to inspire more young women to skate.

Nora Vasconcellos. Photo by Giovanni Reda, courtesy of Adidas Skateboarding.

A new digital short documenting the rise of skateboarder, Nora Vasconcellos, premieres this week in celebration of Adidas’s first female professional rider joining the brand’s global skateboarding team.


“Nora” is a 15-minute digital short charting Vasconcellos’s journey from a young girl receiving her first board on Christmas, to becoming the self-actualized woman and professional that she is today. Directed by Webby-award winning Giovanni Reda and produced by Adidas Skateboarding, the cinematic snapshot provides an inside look at a charismatic skater and her experience navigating a predominantly male-led industry. Her style is fluid, her personality infectious, and her determination unwavering.

Growing up in an athletic family in Massachusetts, Vasconcellos says she was outdoors a lot: rollerblading, mountain biking, playing soccer, and hockey in the winter. Inspired by skateboarders like Grant Taylor and Reggie Rocket from the cartoon show “Rocket Power,” she started skating when she was 14 years old.

She recently became the 2017 Vans Park Series World Champion in Shanghai in September.

“From an early age, I just thought I wasn’t going to work as hard at anything else,” she says of her love of skateboarding. “I think a lot of kids are lost, but if you find something you’re passionate about or interested in, it gives you a chance. I always felt like I could skateboard for myself and not care what other people think.”

Photo by Andrew Peters, courtesy of Adidas Skateboarding.

Vasconcellos is working to inspire more young women to skate. As a new, offbeat voice inside the skate community, her penchant for pushing boundaries makes her a burgeoning pioneer that the filmmaker hopes will transcend far beyond the board.

“We need to set the tone for the world,” Reda says. “Things need to change, and I think Nora is coming in to set that tone. We as a society need to treat women more fair and equal. Hopefully this will bring light and attention to that and change it.”

The short film also features interviews with fellow skateboarding pros, such as Lacey Baker and Sage Elsesser, as well as legends such as Elissa Steamer, Andrew Reynolds, and fellow Adidas pro rider Marc Johnson, who all speak about the power of skateboarding to move towards more inclusivity — and how it can help encourage originality.

Most importantly, the barrier to entry is low, says Vasconcellos. All you need is a board and some protective gear to get started.

“Get a skateboard and find a flat place to practice,” she says. “Find a friend to join. It’s trial and error. It’s like riding a bike — it’ll feel weird at first. There’s definitely a learning curve. But doors will open. It can be fun and addicting!”

Sports
Screenshot via Sweden.se/Twitter (left) Wikimedia Commons (right)

Greta Thunberg has been dubbed the "Joan of Arc of climate change" for good reason. The 16-year-old activist embodies the courage and conviction of the unlikely underdog heroine, as well as the seemingly innate ability to lead a movement.

Thunberg has dedicated her young life to waking up the world to the climate crisis we face and cutting the crap that gets in the way of fixing it. Her speeches are a unique blend of calm rationality and no-holds-barred bluntness. She speaks truth to power, dispassionately and unflinchingly, and it is glorious.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
Ottawa Humane Society / Flickr

The Trump Administration won't be remembered for being kind to animals.

In 2018, it launched a new effort to reinstate cruel hunting practices in Alaska that had been outlawed under Obama. Hunters will be able to shoot hibernating bear cubs, murder wolf and coyote cubs while in their dens, and use dogs to hunt black bears.

Efforts to end animal cruelty by the USDA have been curtailed as well. In 2016, under the Obama Administration, the USDA issued 4,944 animal welfare citations, in two years the numbers dropped to just 1,716.

Keep Reading Show less
Science

The disappearance of 40-year-old mortgage broker William Earl Moldt remained a mystery for 22 years because the technology used to find him hadn't been developed yet.

Moldt was reported missing on November 8, 1997. He had left a nightclub around 11 p.m. where he had been drinking. He wasn't known as a heavy drinker and witnesses at the bar said he didn't seem intoxicated when he left.

Keep Reading Show less
Communities
via Real Time with Bill Maher / YouTube and The Late Late Show with James Corden / YouTube

A controversial editorial on America's obesity epidemic and healthcare by comedian Bill Maher on his HBO show "Real Time" inspired a thoughtful, and funny, response by James Cordon. It also made for a great debate about healthcare that Americans are avoiding.

At the end of the September 6th episode of "Real Time, " Maher turned to the camera for his usual editorial and discussed how obesity is a huge part of the healthcare debate that no one is having.

"At Next Thursday's debate, one of the candidates has to say, 'The problem with our healthcare system is Americans eat shit and too much of it.' All the candidates will mention their health plans but no one will bring up the key factor: the citizens don't lift a finger to help," Maher said sternly.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics
via Gage Skidmore

The common stereotypes about liberals and conservatives are that liberals are bleeding hearts and conservatives are cold-hearted.

It makes sense, conservatives want limited government and to cut social programs that help the more vulnerable members of society. Whereas liberals don't mind paying a few more dollars in taxes to help the unfortunate.

A recent study out of Belgium scientifically supports the notion that people who scored lower on emotional ability tests tend to have right-wing and racist views.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics