Skateboard bachelor party
A pre-wedding night of reckless abandon and reminiscing about juvenile shenanigans
For a few weeks, we lived as rapists.
It was 1991, my last year of private school. I wasn’t a senior, but I only attended Christian Brothers High School temporarily, after I was kicked out of the Davis school system. I needed the intimidation factor of sweaty priests and manly nuns to help me find my footing, I guess.
And it worked. I did well enough at Christian Brothers that they let me back into Davis Senior High School to finish school with my friends.
I wasn’t a criminal, nor was I a saint. Just an underachiever.
My friends were all much smarter than I was, but our bond wasn’t scholastic, anyway. It was skateboarding. That’s all we did. It’s all we thought about. If you were our age and you didn’t have a skateboard, we didn’t know you.
Sometimes, the only thing that kept me out of juvenile hall was that I was too busy skating to commit a crime.
We’d make videos of ourselves skateboarding. We took long road trips to desolate skate spots. We were an intensely happy, if obsessed, group of kids.
So when I saw a headline in the local newspaper in early August that read something about a skateboarding rapist being on the loose somewhere in Davis, I knew that we were in for some trouble.
Not that we raped anyone, of course. But the fact that we were skateboarders who were already categorized as idiots and flunkies meant that we would automatically be perceived as the potential rapists.
We were right. Things changed.
Graffiti started popping up everywhere, saying things such as “Dead boys don’t rape,” “Get the skateboard rapist” and, my favorite, “Curfew for all men.”
The police took us in for questioning.
Once, when we were taking a break from skateboarding in the parking lot of Carl’s Jr., a car pulled up. In the car was a man, about 40, who had a ratlike face with a patchy mustache.
“Hey, you fucking rapists,” he said, with his window rolled halfway down. He tried to spit on me, but the saliva didn’t quite make it out of his car.
“Fuck you,” I said, trying to feign a carefree chuckle.
He sped off, thankfully, because, frankly, he would have pummeled me to death with his white-trash methamphetamine arms.
For a couple of weeks, wherever we went, something of that nature would happen: A truck full of UC Davis jocks threw a dozen soda cans at us and screamed, “Rapists!”; Butchy Davis women in hemp dresses glared us down with their murderous eyes as we rolled past on the sidewalk—and so on.
I don’t know about my friends, but there were moments that summer when—even in my gangly, 5-foot frame—I felt like a big, lumbering, greasy rapist.
That is, until the woman who told police that while she rode her bike along the greenbelt a group of youths on skateboards attacked and sexually assaulted her gave up on her story. There were so many holes in her tale that she finally admitted to the police she was lying all along.
There was no rapist. No rape. Not that time, at least.
The woman was later described as troubled, someone who had basically given up on her life. She needed attention.
But we didn’t care.
As soon as we heard she was lying, we forgot all about her, jumped back on our skateboards and continued on with our lives.
It’s hard to believe that it’s 19 years later.
My friends are off doing their own things. Joe is a world-famous hardware hacker, Atif is an ophthalmologist in Cleveland, John writes jokes for Jay Leno, Clifford is a chemist and I’m a writer.
Throughout our lives, we all had our own problems—with the law, with substance abuse, with women. But, still, none of us—unless you count teabagging your passed-out friend at a party—has committed anything close to rape.
But that’s just one of the things that qualifies my friends to be groomsmen at my upcoming wedding. They’ve been my friends, through horrible and wonderful times, from skateboarding to adulthood.
To honor our four-wheeled past, I decided to skip the bachelor party where I snort coke off the ass of an Asian hooker and end up in Mexico. I wanted to take a more meaningful, cheaper approach. Plus I wanted to try something new. So we rented out Epic Indoor Skate Park in Rocklin. And we, as old men, are going to skate like we we’re 16 again.
For my bachelor party, I want all the memories to flood back.
I want to remember the time I took a shit in a hollow fence and then dropped an M-80 down there, which exploded—the shit cloud smelling up half the city. I want to remember the time a group of gang members tried to steal our skateboards, and so I called a guy I knew, a Marine with huge muscles, to chase them all away. And I want to never forget the time I had sex with that cool girl in the skate-park bathroom.
I even want to remember the time some woman got an entire city to believe that a group of skate-obsessed teens assaulted her with their spindly little arms and skinny fingers.
I’m 35 now, covered in tattoos, and I probably look more like a rapist than I ever did. But that doesn’t matter much, because I’m getting married to the girl of my dreams, who I’ve dated for nine years. And I get to share the day with my skate buddies of yesteryear.
Epic Indoor Skate Park will surely be a mess, with a bunch of old doctors, hackers and writers rolling around, flailing through the course. As we skate, I hope to remember every vital detail of our lives.
That night, I hope we live out our youth exactly the same way we did as kids: with reckless abandon, very little grace and even a bit of excruciating pain.
Editor’s note: The author is now married. And his bachelor party was indeed painful.