Have you ever just sat somewhere and watched people?
You get to see love, hate, fear, rage, happiness. You get to hear caring, sadness, anger, friendship. You get to smell sweet, sour, tart, bitter–aromas of all kinds. Most of all, you get to experience minds of all kinds.
Have you ever seen the movie Fight Club? There is one quote in it that stood out to me: “We are a generation of men raised by women.” When I heard that, it helped me better understand myself. I used to think I had to prove I was a man, because I was raised by a woman … a strong woman. I used to think being physically strong made me a man, but I've learned that it takes the full package–mind and body–to be a man.
Most people look outside themselves for things they already possess within. You do not need someone to tell you what is good and what isn't, everyone learns these things by watching, listening, and reacting. For the most part, people equate their worth with other people's reactions to them. Even though positive reinforcement does feel good, you don't need someone to tell you a trick was dope–the feeling tells you.
I sit back and hear people speak of their accomplishments, and there's nothing wrong with that. Although, in most cases people talk of their achievements to gain acceptance, or props, or whatever. What stands out to me are actions. Talk is cheap. I don't want to hear about a person being cool or being a dick, I want to find out for myself.
I ride a skateboard, but I am a person–flesh and blood, just as you are. If a person has good intentions and realizes they are not the center of the universe, but instead that they are a part of it, then they are a valuable friend. My friends are special to me. No matter how close or far away, whether I talk to them all the time or only once or twice a year, my love for them is unconditional.
You want to know something? Skateboarding is no less fun for me now than it was when I first started. What has changed is the way people look at me. Now what I like most is when people don't pay any attention to me, just like in the beginning. When I go somewhere other than a skate spot, no one pays attention to me. If there was something that made me better than other people, don't you think everyone would notice me? I like to get a second opinion to find out what is real. I know very few people care about me, but for those who do, there is much love.
Have you ever felt out of the loop? I do every time I hear my full or last name. My friends never say my full name, only people who don't know me do. Sometimes I think about changing my name. Sometimes I wonder if I had no name, what people would say to me. Would they ask me to sell or give them something? Would they ask me to explain myself? Maybe if I had no name they would just cut to the chase and break into conversation with me without all the formalities. I would like it if they just said hello.
Riding my skateboard teaches me about life; it shows me what is real. The skateboard itself can not show me what I'm looking for, but when I ride it I feel, I hear, I think, I speak, and I see that the key to life is happiness.