by Silas Thurman
This edition of Wakeskate PI is going to be about travel and money. We have not talked about this much and it really is a big part of a pro wakeskater’s life. You can’t plan on being pro with out planning on a ton of it. Most of the money for this travel is coming out of your own wallet (or in some of your cases your parents’ wallets,) until the big wigs at these companies start picking up the tab.
If you don’t like to travel or just don’t like to fly than you better not take your wakeskating too serious. (Ask Aaron Reed what happens when you do, it involves a lot of Xanax.) Just have fun in your hometown and enjoy the innocence of a good sesh. If you do want to take it to the next level, get ready for a lot of travel and remember to become a pro your going to be poor first. And remember, there’s always someone who wants your job.
I know all you guys and girls don’t like to think about this as the business world, but guess what? It’s more like it than you think. You’re going to trade the luxuries of your own home for the un-luxurious middle seat on the airplane for upwards of 24 hours at a time. You’re going to trade the fun times with your good friends at home that you grew up with, for your iPod that for some reason never gives back any conversations. (I recently downloaded French and Spanish apps just so it seemed like someone was talking to me.)
I know you all hear the talk about the “off-season” for riders, but honestly I’ve been around the industry for about seven years and am still waiting for the “off-season.” If you’re not riding in sunny Florida for the winter, you’re at boat shows, trade shows, and working on product that probably won’t come out for two years.
Now I don`t want to scare anyone away and you know most of my stuff is based on sarcasm and jokes, but this is the real deal. I left a job at a shop to be a poor pro wakeskater. I’ve been very lucky with the companies I’ve rode for and currently ride for, but don’t think that life is going to be less hectic or easy if you get this job you’ve been dreaming of all your life. Just the last month for me has consisted of Florida, Portland, Florida, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Manilla, Camsur, Manilla, Los Angeles, Florida. Rest? Nope, Vermont, Quebec, Vermont, Quebec, and Finally back to Florida. OK so there’s some snowboarding in there too and it’s not all that bad. If any of you know me or at least are starting to pick up my humor than you know that half of what I say is in complete sarcasm. But there is truth too. Hopefully some of you will get to that pro status you dream of and hopefully when you do you find me and tell me if I’m right or not. I bet 90% of you will agree I am right, more right than you could imagine. Talk to you soon.