No offense, but screw your friends. Lessons help a ton. As difficult as learning the basics seems, it is all quite easy. You just need someone to show you what you are doing wrong, or show you how to do it (better). Trust me, you will get it in due time. And you might not even be that good this year. It takes a long time for the wheels to click, but from there it's full speed ahead. I could barely (if you can say I could at all) link turns at the end of last year. This year I am already owning boxes, jumps, and working on flatground tricks.