Words. No one reads them. We only look at the pictures, give them a thumbs up and forget them. I don’t believe it is all for nothing. I cannot. I won’t. Stories are important. It gives things meaning. I’ve said it before and happily repeat it here. “Sometimes it isn’t important that all of the facts of a particular tale are true. It is only important that we continue to tell it.”
The great stories. I’ve been hearing a good number of these as I interview the 1970’s and early 1980’s riders for the William Sharp book project. It makes me believe. I know that what we are doing matters. It must. We were in San Jose last week. Do you want to talk about a story? I heard that the old Buena Vista pool was going again. The locals dug it up and maintain it. This pool has longevity. Virtually everyone knows about Buena Vista. Many have ridden it. Video parts have been made there and legends have cruised its long shadowed walls. MRZ and I woke up early one day and over breakfast decided we had better put some miles in and go check it out. Local Bill Ackerman was one of the first to ever ride Buena Vista pool. He swam in the pool as a kid as his parents were associated with it. Once the place burned in 1960, it soon found itself abandoned. In 1976, Bill and his pals rode skateboards in it. The pool began its glorious history then and there. We all owe a debt of gratitude to Bill Ackerman. He has been a mainstay throughout the pools life.
We drove over through the passes. Huge pine trees scraped the sky and the woods were thick and dark. Shadows and streaming sunlight made it seem surreal. We twisted and turned on the mountain road. Eventually, we pulled to a stop by a metal gate. I peered at my text message and directions again. “Metal gate. Park. Follow the waffle soles in the dirt.” Ray and I did as we were told. We found her. She sat. Colorful. History. I stood in wonder. We wasted no time. We both were stoked and rode for an hour together.
After a time, some pals of mine called and said they would be joining us. Grant Nobel and Brian Armstrong were coming to ride. It was going to be fun. Once they arrived, we really got busy. Grant rolled in and out of the pool like he had been there before. His lien to tail slides were amazing. Brian pulled super quick lines throughout the pool and made shallow corner grinds as well.
Phone calls. A water break… it was growing hot. Grant and Brian wanted to go ride another pool and some other riders had just stopped by Buena Vista. We talked and then split off to go meet some friends at another permission… but that is a whole other story. Thanks to Bill Ackerman for the pool and its history and the session. Buena Vista has a good story. Thanks to Grant and Brian and MRZ. Stoked! Skate- Ozzie