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There really was no fear that day. What I had to prove was only a lesson to myself. My shoulder still hurts, it has become an instant legend in my son’s mind, and I remember the day of the great skate.

It took place in a skate park located across the street from my father’s favorite grocery store. We drove separately that day to gather food and drinks for the week. Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed the park was buzzing with young people gliding around on skateboards.

As I remembered my time spent with my son watching those boards from a distance, I wondered… why not me?

The Taunt

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I have always been a sucker for a good bet. Even worse, at age 52, a challenge from anyone under 30 years old will almost always be accepted.

This comes from years of working with people that age when they were still in grade school.

When I stopped by to ask the skater kids what the secret to the venture was, I was met with a taunt.

One of the cool kids replied that the secret had to do with the size of a man’s anatomy.

I immediately responded, “I’m in!”

And I jumped out of my car.

The Hype

I asked anyone that was listening for a skateboard and a kinder youth offered me his. He also advised that I be careful.

I began kicking the board around and checking my balance. For all they new at that point, I could have been a professional back in my prime.

I was not.

A crowd began to gather and I pointed to the tallest part of the park and asked, “how do I get up there?”

The crowd advised I not go there, so I did. Right up to the edge.

The board was at an angle and I was ready to let gravity do what gravity does. Once I was ready to commit, cell phones were filming, and someone yelled from the distance.

“Leeeeeeeeeeean forwarrrrrrrrrrrd.”

The Flight

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As soon as I began my descent, the borrowed skateboard shot out from under my feet.

The crowd did no laughing as they thought I might be hurt. I landed on my elbow and my side. Luckily I did not hit my head.

For one glorious moment, I concurred my fear of falling, being embarrassed, and trying new things. Though I do not recommend it, skateboarding was good for me.

It was, however, not good for my body.

Toe to Toe

My left shoulder was useless, as was my left leg. Four of the smaller skater dudes offered to help me up and finally achieved that goal after a lesson on “toe to toe” lifting (the method of raising someone with a leverage point created by touching toes).

On the way back to my car, I asked someone if my elbow was bleeding. They said it was.

When I responded that I would look later, the guy that let me borrow his skateboard said he admired my attitude.

The Moral of the Story

Sadly, there is no moral to this story. Or, perhaps, happily, there is no lesson to be learned here.

My son saw it on the internet before I could tell him about the incident. My shoulder still hurts to this day.

I did not die.

It might have been irresponsible, I would not do it again, but that was the day of the great skate for me.

Just another story for the grandbabies.

Our lives are filled with stories like this. Make them epic either in the experience or in the remembering. Your living is how God understands creation. Give God a good time.

Peace to you and happy skating.

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Author: Kevin Thompson

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