Go Skateboarding Day June 21

On June 18, 2015, in Family, by Chris Baccus
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Times have changed since I was a skateboarder in the mid-1980s. Of course a lot of other things have changed too like Madonna is 56 years old, BMW makes electric cars, and cellphones aren’t the size of shoeboxes and are used mostly to play video games not make phone calls. Okay, so enough old man talking. Now what was I writing about?

Oh yeah, skateboarding…

Our house currently has four skateboards that do get some regular use including my original Powell & Peralta Mike McGill board and an electric first generation ZBoard Pro woody edition that goes 23 mph and up to 20 miles per charge.

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The twins are still learning how to board since we bought them a board to share in late 2013 and last Christmas Oscar got his own board from Santa with fully light-up blue wheels from Sunset Skateboard Co. They are working on balance and pushing off. There’s mostly a lot of “butt boarding” going on, but they are trying and we’ve had more success with the skateboards than the bikes.

 

I love skateboarding. Back in middle school and high school I spent a lot of time watching the early Powell Peralta VHS videos with Mike McGill, Tony Hawk, Steve Caballero, Rodney Mullen, and many more. The recent 2012 documentary Bones Brigade captured a lot of my youth and brought back so many great memories like seeing Future Primitive with a bunch of friends crowded around a neighbor’s TV and then we’d go out try to copy what Lance Mountain did or ollie on a curb.

Some kids had quarter pipes and one kid had a half pipe in his backyard. The house was right behind the track of our middle school and we spent a lot of time there and at parks jumping off anything we could find. I used to be able to ollie onto a park bench and rail grind on the half pipe.

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A few skate parks existed, but they were all in Southern California and I only went to one when visiting my grandparents back then since we lived in Portland, Oregon during my skateboarding years. The best times were street skating mixing in tricks while riding the streets of downtown Portland. I remember even entering a small competition that was held on the riverfront of Portland.

No one had put up signage about no skateboards back then, so everything was game. Sure we’d get some shop owner yelling at us or some pedestrians glaring at us as we went by, but no laws were in place and we were just having fun emulating what we saw in the skateboarding videos and Thrasher magazine!

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Sunday, the same day as Father’s Day this year, is something called Go Skateboarding Day. I’ve honestly never heard of it, but thanks to the people at Hamboard Skateboards I was told all about it. Basically, it’s awareness just like any other National Such-and-Such Day.

In a skateboarding world that is now big money and on ESPN, it’s nice to hear of something as quaint as Skateboarding Day. It’s simply about getting out and enjoying the sport with friends or family. Not that I need another excuse to keep practicing skateboarding with my sons, so I’ll join in because I need the practice too as I’m still trying to return to my ollie onto a park bench days. It’s hard now because I weight a bit more than I did at 13…

Grab your skateboard and join us!

First Fatherhood Moments

On June 17, 2015, in Family, by Chris Baccus
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This week Dove Men+Care launched a new commercial “First Fatherhood Moments” as part of their larger #RealStrength campaign focusing on dads. It’s a look at the emotional impact one gets when a man realizes he is going to be a dad. There is a full range of emotions in the ad from celebration, to tears, to shock.

It’s a commercial that made me go back over 10 years to when I learned my wife was pregnant. Sadly, I can’t even remember that day. I remember the day we both found out that we were having twins. My wife was having some pain and thought it might be a tube pregnancy, but when we went in for an ultrasound at 7 weeks because of the pain, we found out there were two on the way.

 

That day was pretty amazing. I recall none of our parents initially believing us since we had been married for 9 years before finally trying for kids. Let’s just say a lot of people figured we were going to skip being parents by that point. So calling and saying we are going to have twins was met with some suspicion. I remember sitting in our car calling a few family members and sharing our excitement and yes some fear.

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It’s an amazing moment when you know you are going to be a dad. Most of us can remember that exact moment; though, I was a bit shell-shocked by the news of twins so that memory is far more vivid for me.

The first moment feels so long ago and honestly there are so many more memorable moments since then. One was this past Sunday when the boys and I attended an afternoon basketball camp with former NBA player Robert Horry. It was a lot of fun spending the day together as we switched from offense to defense.

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This Father’s Day we are spending the weekend swimming and tubing as a family. Like many past Father’s Days, it’s time to do what I want with the family I love.

If you want, you too can share a ‘First Fatherhood Moment’ from your life with @DoveMenCare on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

 

DISCLOSURE: Dove invited me to attend an afternoon basketball camp with former NBA player Robert Horry. Thoughts and opinions are my own.

 

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A Father’s Day Gift Guide

On June 16, 2015, in Family, by Chris Baccus
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There are a lot of lists for Father’s Day and I can honestly say not one of them had more than one thing worth considering.  Here is my take on what to get dad at a variety of price points. Gifts are fine, but many of us just want to enjoy a day that is ours.

 

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1. Original Paperback Pants

I recently refreshed me wardrobe and one the brands I discovered and now have a few pairs of is from a California based clothing company called Original Paperbacks. They make some of the best fitting pants.

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2. Shinola Watch

Forget the Apple Watch. If you didn’t’ order one months ago you won’t be able to order one anyway. Even if you could, the first generation Apple products are rarely worth owning. So wait a couple years for a smartwatch. In the meantime, The Shinola Runwell is where it’s at. It’s simple, classic and will never go out of style and best of all you won’t have to constantly run iOS updates..

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3. Carpe Viam!

I own the “Still Plays with Cars” t-shirt and it is one of my favorites. It is made with a soft cotton and slim, but not tight fighting. The t-shirts are a perfect fit that is if your “dad bod” is in check. If you want you can get matching shirts or other designs for your kids too. Don’t forget to preorder the new children’s book The Greatest Race featuring the amazing story of Sir Stirling Moss. Bonus, the artist and storyteller Dwight Knowlton is a pretty awesome dad in his own right.

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4. Lego Mini Cooper

We built one last year when it released. This is a great Lego for dad. You can build it by yourself or with the kids, but take it to work and display it in your office. It makes a great activity for Father’s Day too. Best of all, it is Dad’s Lego. All the pieces will stay together and never get lost in the toy box.

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5. Pocket Square Clothing Skinny Ties

Many of you can skip this one, but for those of us who still wear a suit and tie to work this is a great local Los Angeles company doing fashion at a reasonable price.

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6. Baxter of California Shower Kit

I just ran out of my conditioner this morning; so if my wife is reading this…hint, hint. Baxter of California makes a lot of great men’s care products for those looking for products with mild or no scent. The shower kit is a good place to start, but if you want some other choices the after-shave balm and shave tonic are a few other great choices.

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7. Porsche 919 Hybrid 

What a great way to celebrate last weekend’s win at Le Mans, a Porsche 919 Hybrid just like the one that won! Plus it looks great on a bookshelf at home or the office.

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8. ZBoard 2: Perl Edition

With a range of 24 miles and traveling a maximum of 20 mph, the new ZBoard 2 boards are a great way to commute around town or to work. I’ve had an original ZBoard since November 2014 and it’s been one of my favorite things.

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9. Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manefesto

This book from my favorite barbecue restaurant and cook Aaron Franklin in Austin, Texas is a must for any barbecue fan.  It’s not so much a cookbook, but more of a story around how to make great barbecue when you consider every factor that affects smoking meat.

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10. Local, Grass-Fed Steaks

Depending on where you are, find a local ranch. Go to your local farmer’s market and find a meat vendor who is local to your area. I have been impressed with Bel Campo Meat Co and Novy Ranches here in Southern California.

 

 

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I Think I’ll Pass on “Bratwurst in Bed”

On June 11, 2015, in Food, by Chris Baccus
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Filed under things that will give you nightmares is this Father’s Day ad from Johnsonville. This time it’s not the factory farm meat that is scary. No, the whole bizarre advertising to sell you stuff trend is what’s scary. Does anyone really want drug induced images of their sausage coming to life? And even if you do, are you likely to rush out and buy it?

Let’s not even discuss how the sausage puppet looks like a penis with a STD. We’ll save that diagnosis for another time.

And a note to my family, please bring me some granola and fresh fruit if you are going to bring me breakfast in bed. Thank you.

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