Like many other new ideas, there is a grandiose vision but no real clue how to get it started.
How exactly do you find other crazy folk interested in getting back into skateboarding when you haven’t been involved in the sport in over 20 years?
To start, I decided to connect with the DrySpot indoor skatepark and learned that Monday nights were generally nice and quiet. Perfect! It was private, dry and away from the prying eyes of teenagers who would question you (more like comment) with “Dude, you can’t kickflip?!”
With a location in mind, now I had to find people to join in and it’s not like there were a lots of options. Do I scour websites of people stuck in the 80’s? Do I scope out the local skateparks with a set of binoculars, guessing if the parents are former skaters themselves looking for a reason to unleash the beast?
As amusing as it might have been to try one of these options, none would really help me find people without having to go through a series of bad visuals, getting questioned by police or punched in the face. Surely there had to be a way to engage total strangers, maintain some anonymity and not appear crazier than the next guy.
Then it hit me: Craigslist.
Ahhhh the joys of Craigslist where the dreamers, the ranters and the flaky can unite in a market place of the weird and obscure. Having done several auditions for bands using Craigslist, it was a perfect cover!
I set up an add and got the equivalent cyberspace crickets for a response, so I jazzed it up again with some lingo I pulled from watching old Bones Brigade videos and fired it back out there. I got one response.
The dude was 20 (almost half my age…………almost) but he fit the right criteria (anyone) and the DrySpot connected me with another learner in his mid 50s! With a few emails flying back and forth, the first trial session was set to include the ‘I’m going to fight middle age’ dude (me), the whipper snapper and a professor (now called Switch Man).
We gathered, skated and everybody lived to talk about it.