My wife and I took our son skateboarding on a Sunday afternoon, and he had a go while we chatted.
Then our 12-year-old son asked if I wanted to try.
I did. So I raced down the sidewalk, reliving my youth in West L.A. as a skate rat when I would tear up ditches, sidewalks and sometimes pools in the waning years of the Z-Boys. I rode everywhere, in the sidewalk-surfing kind of way, not the trickster. That would come later. I especially liked racing down roads, doing sweeping turns. So much so that one time I got pulled over by a cop speeding down Temescal Canyon Road, which ran to the beach from my high school in Pacific Palisades. How about that? Pulled over for speeding on a skateboard!
The memories raced through my head as I cut deep into my turns on my son’s skateboard, swerving past pedestrians while thinking, how cool am I?
Then I hit a pebble and tumbled.
I lay there for a few seconds before pulling my 49-year-old body off the cement, my hand bruised and my knee scraped.
I walked slowly back to my wife and son, avoiding eye contact with the pedestrians who I’d just raced past.
My wife and son were laughing (their asses off), and my son said, “Hey, Dad, I wish I’d got that on video – it would have gone viral on YouTube.”
When we got home, I went to the freezer to get ice to put on my bruises. My wife and son? They went to the computer to create a YouTube channel and plot their next opportunity to catch another of my mishaps in trying to be a cool-ass dad.