When I got into skateboarding in the late 1980’s, it was on a downward trend. I’d gotten a skateboard in 1984, after the “Back to the Future” hype, but I was still more into BMX in those days and the board really didn’t see much action. sure, I kicked around on it and rode it around town and tried tricks, but I wasn’t serious about it like I was my bike.
The summer before 8th grade (1988) , however, my focus shifted to skateboarding. My second deck was a John Lucero Model (first being the Vision “Psycho Stick”, a terrible deck, purchased at the Decatur Bicycle Shoppe).
I remember this deck fondly. I got it in the winter, in Illinois, so it was really hard to break it in. I skated it in my parents unheated garage in the dead of winter. Unfortunately, I have no pictures of this deck in my posession, but in looking for the image of it, I realized (more like remembered) tha tI actually had several Lucero decks.
Apparently I glommed onto John Lucero as the skater of choice back then. I really have no idea why, since I don’t really have a recollection of reading or seeing a lot of him in thrasher or Transworld, but I liked his style in skating and in deck design. I clearly remember scratching the graphics for the first time…..I was a bit upset, but then quickly realized that I didn’t really care about the graphics as much as I did the form of the board.
Anyway, long story short, I found this “deck” that I made in my 8th grade shop class. While everyone else was making bookshelves, coat racks and other random stuff, I made a completely useless “skateboard” and burned “Lucero” into it. I hold it dearly, it was part of the process in which I realized that skateboarding was something that I got. I understood it and it didn’t matter if no one else did. I wanted to do it as long as I could and nothing else had filled that same role in my young life. I’ll get my board out and kick around on occasion, but at nearly 37 years old, my body has been battered, beaten and otherwise torn apart by skateboarding, BMX, boxing, grappling and anything else I did along the way, so the session is usually shor lived followed by a healthy dose of ibuprofen. I can, however, unequivocally say that I still miss skateboarding every. single. day.
Cheers, John Lucero, here’s to you.