Leaving the Herd, Joining the TribePosted: November 7, 2013 | |
i was a nerd. no, seriously, when i was a kid i was a straight up geek. i read encylopedia brown, looked forward to book fairs, played DnD and acedemic games. yeah……certified nerd. back then, nerds were pariahs. i just didn’t fit in with the “cool kids”. i remember all too well grades 2-6. i had friends, but with each passing year school got more and more clique’ish. and i saw i had less and less friends. it soon became me and my fellow geeks.
then i hit junior high. one of my friends started skateboarding, then i too tried it. i became obsessed. my life did a fundamental 180. my language changed, my dress changed, my attitude- changed. had a great post about losing your virginity and how high school hierarchy breaks down your access to women. i walked a different route, i became a skater.
i went from a meek, soft-spoken kid to a trash talking, don’t give a fuck, “it’s all about me”, little bastard. i got REALLY into to punk and rap (white people didn’t really listen to rap back then). my afterschool’s were spent learning every trick i could. it took me almost a week to learn to ollie. i spent HOURS surfing concrete. i met wolves that wouldn’t have given me a second thought if not for me being part of the tribe.
then there were the girls. notice how i posted i lost my virginity in 8th grade. i started skating in 7th grade, and basically spent the year building a reputation (though i had ZERO clue about it) as a “bad boy”. i still did enough school work to get by, but i had been booted from my “honor’s” classes. right around 8th grade i started getting notes in my locker from girls.
no cells phones back then, but kids were definitely “sexting”. i got some pretty gnarly letters from girls when i was in school.
didn’t matter. i LOVED skating. weekends had me leaving the house at 9am and not coming home until 10pm. mom would have to give $2-3 to make sure i’d eat. ramps (dork and vert), street, i LOVED sessioning with my friends. it was one of the first times i did something just for myself.
mom had just divorced and i was banging heads with my step dad. skating gave a me a great outlet for self destruction that was somewhat accpetable. and i was a tiny kid. still, i had ZERO fear when i had a board underneath me. “Danny’ll do it” became a common phrase when it came to a stunt.
it was my first “going my own way” choice. it was fringe, but NO ONE fucked with the skater’s. jocks avoided us, the “popular” kids didn’t tease us, and we stuck together like blood. there’s a reason it’s referred to as “the tribe”. hell, even when i started surfing in san diego, i fit right in. even to this day, i make it a point to visit my friends back in NO and try to catch a session.
so…..what’s the point to all this?
when you find something you enjoy, you’re passionate about- do it. suck the marrow out of getting as much out of it as you can. get as proficient at it as you can. there’s nothing more liberating. i only skated for about 4 years. but it changed me forever. i learned that i was responsible for my own happiness and what other people think means DICK.
the herd chokes you, the tribe embraces you. and guess what….the women take notice and will want to follow you deeper into “your world”. so find your niche in this world, and own it. do you really think i give 2 fuck’s about what people think of my retirement plans?