It was the mid to late eighties and I was viewing a video called Sure-Grip Beach-style. Most of the contest was a blur of fluorescent pink and green, but one old guy with faded Levis, Chuck Taylors, and no shirt appeared on the screen, blew away the other skaters, forever changed my view of street skating, and didnít even place in the competition.
The skater was legendary Skull Skates ripper, Dave Hackett. With ZZ Topp blaring in the background, he tore up the course with aggressive slappy grinds, mile-long nose wheelies, and multiple 360s. I was a young kid, knowing nothing about skating except what was popular at the time. Hackett demonstrated to me that day, however, that the essential element of skateboarding culture is that going against the grain is the nature of the beast.
On that same video, John Lucero was asked, Who do you think will win the contest today? He responded, Not a street skater. At first, I was a bit offended. After watching Hackett and seeing that he didnít even place in the top ten, I was enlightened. So thatís how the situation played itself out: Hackett lost, but I definitely won!