Helder Lima. Slept On

Words: Jo Lorenz (Quotes) & David Luther

Helder Lima! Who? Ah, “ED!”

No, we won’t go into depths about this nickname. Let’s just say it matches him quite well. Helder is the kind of kid who owns a spot. He’ll roll up, big grin on his face, he’ll hug his homies and test everybody else’s sense of humour (not intentionally, not in a bad way, this is just the way he is), and then he’ll pop a fs shove it heeler from flatground that could clear a small horse, and make it look like it was nothing. And then, when he’s got your attention, he’ll grin some more, shrug, dangle his arms like a 2007 version of Ray Barbee, and… Nothing. He’ll just be part of the session, and he’ll make you feel comfortable about it. Mostly.

“I met ED for the first time when I was on holiday in Lisbon, visiting my friend and team mate Ricardo Fonseca. He went skating with us a few times, and he impressed me with his style, and his repertoire right away. Ductile like an African antelope!”

You didn’t know it yet, but the end of the last two sentences was a quote from you. Okay, Jo Lorenz knew that. But you didn’t. Nevertheless, those are the exact words you’ll use if you ever find yourself in the situation of having to describe your first encounter with this Portuguese teenage-prodigy/-menace. Helder Lima knows how to throw his thin bones, that’s for sure.

“By now, Helder is my team mate at Emerica Europe, and we’ve spent quite some time on the road together. He’s very thankful and motivated, and he’s got this twinkle in his eyes, which gives me something special, it reminds me of something special that tends to be forgotten after a few years. Ed is a reminder of how joyful skateboarding can be.”

Every fibre of Helder Lima’s body is alive, to say the least. He’s a bash of an eyelid short of being hyperactive, curious like a little sister, and he has a giant mouth that likes to laugh a lot (and loud), to make fun of people, to learn how to ask for cigarettes and light in your language, and to ask you for cigarettes and light in your language. He’ll ask you for a lot of other words and phrases as well, and if he can use them against you, he will. His thirst for knowledge seems to be insatiable, which is a good thing. Unfortunately it’s in the nature of violently moving things, that other things get thrown off the table every once in a while. Helder’s brain is no exception.

“Monday morning following this year’s ESC, Helder missed his flight from Basel—once again. So I took him to my place in Freiburg, in order to get him on the next day’s plane heading south. We made some lunch, and Ed told me about his background, and his family. Their roots are based on an African island called Capo Verde, but Helder grew up in Portugal. I’m not too sure if I should be the one to tell his story in a magazine, there’s certainly nicer stories to be told. Anyway, Ed can’t do without a cig on the shitter, and without a running TV at night. I could see his point about the cigarette, but I don’t own a TV set, so he probably didn’t sleep that night. I figured I’d show him around my town a bit, so we cruised Freiburg’s narrow alleyways on our bikes. It was, like, Helder’s fifth time on a bike, and he had so much fun discovering the town that way. He closely missed a few crashes, but that didn’t stop him. What little German I had taught him, he made use of it with the biggest smile on his face: “Rechts, Links, Geradeaus, Achtung, Fuck Yeah!” After that we had a few beers. It was then and there that I recognized, that Helder was either 7, or 27—but certainly not 17. We all have a lot to learn in life, and I have to say that ED learns really fast; he’s well on his way, and it’s a good way!”

Helder will probably find his place(s) in life faster than most of us. He’s like a sponge, absorbing every given information around him, and if something is not obvious enough, he’ll ask someone in his unmatched, charming manner—until he knows what’s going on. Sometimes this kind of behaviour pushes the wrong buttons, but then again, he’s a young buck, whose talents have thrown him into a world of superstardom (well, a sort of a kiddy glove small time superstardom for now), and he’s eager to test his boundaries. If that whole package is too much of a hassle for you, get some earplugs, and just enjoy the skateboarding side of this Portugese whirlwind. There’s plenty to enjoy, Helder’s boardcontrol is absolutely amazing.

One thing is for sure: you’ll have a hard time ignoring him in the future. That future starts once Helder starts really focussing on his career. Could be right now so get used to the thought.

Helder skates for Emerica Europe, Eastpak, Volcom Europe, Tribal skateshop Lisboa, Flow Deluxe dist.

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