Stuff I Did in the '80s
Sk8 or Go Home
Sk8 or Go Home

The surfers and skaters were the cool kids in our high school. After many failed attempts it was clear I was lousy at surfing but I could keep my balance on the redesigned wide-deck skateboards that were popular.

Skateboarding was a punk rock lifestyle of risk-taking, ratty clothes and shaved heads. I spent hundreds of dollars on a skateboard and a pair of authentic SK8-Hi Vans, which were only worn by true skaters. It seemed like I metamorphosed overnight and my carefree nature was replaced by an angsty tough kid. I had so much to prove, mostly to myself, that I wasn’t a wimp.

My Michael Jackson and Elton John records were shelved in favor The Dead Kennedys, Black Flag and The Violent Femmes. I spent hours attempting skateboard stunts and drawing Powell Peralta-inspired ghouls. I was totally committed for fear of being revealed as a poser. It felt so absolute: I could only be one sort of person or another. There was no room for anything else. But inside a battle raged as I tried to figure out who I truly was.

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Introduction Half a Boombox I’m Not a Member I was Simon Le Bon (For Fifteen Minutes) Motown 25 Watch Whatever, Whenever Snowblind You’re the One That I Want Call Me Your Kiss is on My List Electric Boogaloo Dear Daryl Hall and John Oates Where Shopping is a Pleasure Dialect of a Decade I’m Alright The Sunshine State Shazam! It’s Just a Fantasy I’ve Got a Secret Sunday Funnies Impeachment American Top 40 License to Drive Risky (Show) Business Jumping Someone Else’s Train Yakety Sax I Want to be Elton John When I Grow Up Hit Me With Your Best Shot: Tetherball, Dodgeball & Flag Football Sk8 or Go Home Roll a Saving Throw vs. Velour Piano Man The Duckman Cometh Money for Nothing Waiting for the Bus More Than Meets the Eye The Legend Begins Whip It When You Care Enough to Send the Very Best Master Chef Muppetmania I Want to Ride My Bicycle WW III My Octopus Teacher Some Like it Hot Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs Dare to Be Stupid Keeping the Faith
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Never Abandon Imagination Tony DiTerlizzi: Never abandon imagination.

Imagination is a world of possibility that exists within each of us. It is what makes us uniquely human. It is our creative fingerprint that touches and influences the world around us. Imagination is essential to art and science; to innovation and prosperity. It gives us hope, calls us to action and leads to change.

Whether it’s fairies, dragons, robots or aliens, all of my children’s book characters are siblings born of my imagination – an imagination strengthened through years of encouragement from family, teachers and friends. While so many others abandoned it during their transition from childhood to adulthood, I fiercely held onto mine, hoping for a day when I could share it to inspire the next generation of dreamers. Innovators. World changers.

Imagination empowers us to envision and create a reality of what could be. We must hold it dear, foster it and never abandon it.