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The fat lady has sung (what to do after skateboarding).

SO HERE'S THE SCENARIO: Young dude shows promise of skateboarding excellence, drops out of school, devotes entire young life to the pursuit of awesomeness, wakes up in his '30s without any real world education or training and comes to the realization that jumping down flights of stairs as a means to pay rent is not a sustainable career goal. So what is said dude supposed to do? Don't sweat it guys, I've got you covered. Just because you're losing your three-sixty flip doesn't mean you have to lose your shit. Here's some suggestions:

TEAM MANAGER: This one is sort of a no brainer but I thought I'd throw it in here just to get the ball rolling. A lot of ex-pros end up penciling this one in on their resume shortly after retiring their pro model. It's a good entry level position into the field of nannying as well, which is nearly as rad as skateboarding.

START YOUR OWN COMPANY: Again, a no brainer. You've been riding for skateboard companies for years so surely you'd know how to run one, right? If not, just ask Mike McGill. (Whose company "Chapter 7" apparently should have been six more chapters into the book.) If you don't feel like venturing out onto your own to start a company then just get your current company to start a new division and stick your face on it. (The only way this is going to work is if kids are excited about you, so make sure you've got some damn sweatbands or a rat tail or a scarf or something going.)

SKATESHOP EMPLOYER: Who knows more about skateboarding than somebody who used to get paid to do it? Nobody. Except the 16-year-old kids you work with. But you know what the difference between them and you is? Yep, they're just little punks and you've been there and done it. Oh, that and that they'll probably end up being manager before you since their friend's dad owns the shop.

MOVE BACK IN WITH YOUR FOLKS: Why not? Think of all the dudes that never even move out of their parent's house in the first place. Now those dudes are the real losers. Plus, you can go through your closet and find all of your old posters and magazine ads and stick them up in the basement and make your own club. And you can track down all your friends who still live in your hometown and invite them over and tell them how pathetic they are for never moving to California.

GET INTO TATTOOS: Then, when people recognize you and want to talk about "the old days," you can cut them off and say, "yeah, yeah ... but did you see this barbarian on my neck?" And then you can show them your muscle car.

OPEN UP A SKATEPARK: Again, a call to Mr McGill might be in order. This is the type of job where you can just kick back and watch fewer and fewer kids recognize you as the years go by. But don't let that get you down. Because at some point dads will pull up in their sports ears to drop their kids off and will recognize you. And that my friend, will feel good.

Become an actor: It worked for our friend Mr Lee, right? And wasn't Mr Berra on an episode of Felicity? Maybe this isn't such a good suggestion though because both of those dudes are still kicking it in the action sports industry. Maybe try to become a gaffer or a lead grip instead. You can still say you work in "the biz."

Drugs: Why not? Most people you meet who are hopelessly addicted to drugs don't even have any good stories to tell. But you're in the unique position to get all cranked out and launch into some of those "No man, for real ... you should have seen the size of that triple set ..." ramblings. And when you're on drugs at least you have that constant desire to do something (even if it's only more drugs). At least you're not just sitting in your apartment watching your 411 interview over and over.

(Note 1. If you're a young dude this article may still come in handy. Just cut it out of the magazine and read it when you're in your late "20s or early "30s, depending upon how haggard your ass has become.)

(Note 2. The only reason I felt compelled to write this article is because I was never good enough at skateboarding to get sponsored. Because of that I feel the need to make fun of people more athletically gifted than I am. It's a defense mechanism, but I'm OK with that.)

(Note 3. The first five people to come up to me after this article comes out and say, "Hey dude, you forgot one ..." receive one complimentary slap to the mouth. If the suggestion is "you forgot 'go to prison'," then the amount of slaps to the mouth goes up to two, because I intentionally left that one out so I wouldn't get shanked.)
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Author:Sieben, Michael
Date:Apr 1, 2005
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