I keep being reminded to play like a kid. A couple of vivid examples happened in just the last week.
Gordon, my fiancé, and I love boating up in Lake Tahoe. The first summer after I left KSBY we spent most of our summer days floating on the crystal clear blue of that beautiful body of water. He was recovering from surgery and I was recovering from my latest stint in television news. This summer we are both working more, have our condo up there rented out much more, and are both wondering whether taking the boat out of storage and docking it for the season makes sense. We have been dealing with a bit of option paralysis.
Last week we were still debating whether to head north and get the “job” done. Gordon called Leon, the free-spirited owner of the boat storage facility who he had talked to several times already that week to say he had changed his mind again. We would wait until after the 4th of July weekend. Here’s how the conversation went from there.
Leon: “Dude, too late. I already pulled your boat down, got the guys working on it right now. Time to Shred the Gnar Dude.”
Gordon; “What is Shred the Gnar?”
Leon: “Dude, are you that old? It’s 4th of July weekend. You know, get out there and get to it. Break some shit.”
Gordon asked how soon I could be ready and said we were heading north.
“It’s time to Shred the Gnar.” He told me.
After a quick inquiry from me, followed by a google search, I learned “Shred the Gnar” has to do with extreme sports…snowboarding, skateboarding, surfing or skiing but to me it’s a fun new commandment to quit taking life so seriously and seize the day. It’s become my new favorite saying for the summer.
We were back in Shell Beach for the actual 4th where for some reason we tend to steer clear of the crowds and craziness and watch the fireworks from a friends house. But this year, we opted to get on our bikes and ride right down into the chaos. Gordon, his son, a couple of friends and I ended dancing our way down to waters edge, lying on our backs with the fireworks exploding right over us. I mean you felt each explosion and it was fantastic! Not quite tearing down a powder-covered mountain, but Shredding the Gnar in our own middle-aged way.
I got to thinking about how easy it can be to take the easy path to summer and life in general. It takes a little extra coordination to load bikes, boats, or toys of any kind and actually use them to PLAY (you know, like you did as kids) but it’s so worth it.
As we were riding home (must faster than cars caught in traffic) and my legs and lungs were burning heading up the hill out of Pismo Beach I got to thinking. How many 4th of July celebrations have I missed because I was reading the late news. I remembered how for the last couple we weren’t sure Gordon would even be able to ride like this again. I was overcome with such a sense of gratefulness we made the effort. And a commitment to continue playing like a child as often as possible. Life is short, unpredictable and far too serious for too often.
So Shred the Gnar Baby!