E— and I dined at Zupas for his evening birthday date, where he brought me up to speed with his latest pipe dream of adding skateboarding to his repertoire of skills. As we headed back across town he began texting friends for advice on where to find the best boards. Before they could answer I pulled into the parking lot of Happy Valley Boards. E— was hesitant, but I told him it never hurt to just look at what was available. I walked in, smiled at the guys behind the counter, and asked about outfitting for a novice.
We were guided step-by-step through 100% Canadian Pine decks, trucks, wheels, bearings and spacers. I could see the look of utter dismay spreading across E—'s face as his board was pieced together to his specification. It read: Seriously? Mom is just walking into a skate shop and setting me up, no questions asked?
Confession. I was delirious with delight. The eternal rebel in me came charging through all sense of budgetary caution and I probably overspent on this gift. But I'd been waiting fifteen years for E— to start skating, because I knew it was something he was going to love before he was born. Knew it. I'd even tried to steer him that direction previously, but, like his mother, it had to be his idea. Not someone else's.
We walked out with a beautiful T-Puds Plan B on Independent trucks, wheels, bearings and spacers. It was then that the reason for his hesitation came to light. "See, Mom!" E— said. "Those guys are totally nice. There's no need to judge."
"E—," I said. "I dated those guys in high school. I know they're nice. I was never judging."
"Those guys? Those very guys?"
"Skaters," I corrected, but he was on a roll and we were laughing.
"I bet they're thinking, "Man, she looked better in high school." Just kidding, Mom. You are beautiful!"
And so I am.