Meet Jared, who wants to be like the skateboarder, Tony Hawk.
Given the state of today’s technology, Jared has a much better chance of succeeding that I did in my quest for skater glory.
Back in the previous century (Sherman, set the WABAC Machine to 1981), I wanted to learn how to ride a skateboard. I was growing up in Southern California at the time and this was the place and time to be for all things skater-related. While I knew no friends who had empty pools or knew of no place that had large abandoned drainage pipes where I could flash my talents, I still dreamt of all manners of flips, turns, and tricks whose names I did not know.
My parents decided to put an end to my constant pleading and for my 12th birthday, they took me to a local sports shop where I was presented with a skateboard with bright orange wheels.
I was also presented with every form of safety equipment known to humanity at that time. This was my parents’ deal. If I wanted to ride the board, I had to wear the safety paraphernalia. Helmet, elbow pads, knee pads, gloves, and wrist guards were all now part of my retinue. Needless to say, I looked like a well-padded dork.
My dreams of glory never panned out most likely because I was so worn out from putting on all the pads that I could never dredge up enough energy to do tricks, but the truth was I simply wasn’t that coordinated. In addition, I suffered from a deficiency that does not hamper Jared. I had no one to teach me. I knew no one else who skated who could show me how to do any manner of tricks.
Jared, on the other hand, has YouTube.
My middle child will spend time glued to the video sharing service watching over and over Tony Hawk or some other wizard of the board do a trick and then take the time to break it down for the neophyte. Jared will take these hours of study and then practice them out on our streets. From ollies to kickflips to pop-shove-its to the boneless, my son is using the full potential of the Internet to master a new craft.
I’m so proud and oh, so jealous.
However, I put at 5 months the over/under spread on him breaking a bone despite the dorky safety equipment that I make him wear also.