Shawn Summers, Providence, Daylight Saving Time, and Dan Yorke

The first time I ever rode my BMX bike in Providence I was in 8th or 9th grade, I can't fully remember. A kid, Shawn Summers, had moved to Taunton from Agawam and I met him because he had a Dirtbag clothing tee shirt on. As an only child and teenager obsessed with BMX, my dream of another BMXer moving to my town basically came true. Anyways, we met and hung out and Shawn became part of the small crew of kids who rode BMX "seriously". Later on Shawn went through a few different incarnations, but he was always a pretty funny and nice dude.

It was Daylight Saving Time the day we had all been promised by Shawn that we were going to Providence. So, as Shawn had advised, we all met at his house bright and early. It was at this point that we all realized the first problem of the day. Shawn's parents owned an emerald green Ford Taurus sedan and we were supposed to fit five bikes, five BMXers, Shawn's little brother Brett, and his parents. In case you lost count that's eight people in a sedan. When Mr. Summers first learned of this he was understandably irate. It even seemed like we may not get the chance to go to Providence. In fact I figured one of us would have taken the noble route and skipped out on the opportunity. Not myself but one of my other friends that is. Of course none of us skipped out and we all acted as if Mr. Summers was completely out of line for getting worked about such a thing. Looking back, I can't even believe that we fit the bikes on the bike rack, nevermind ourselves in the car. We did it though and we eventually made our way to Providence.

Road Fools 4 had just come out and they rode Providence in it. We were basically foaming at the mouths to go sit around at spots that we wouldn't do a thing on. Except Shawn. Shawn tried a bunch of shit like he always did and in the process he got a flat tire. Probably annoyed with the shit show on the way up, we were left to our own devices in the city. This meant we had to find a place for a tube and tools by bike. After some directions we made it up to the Benny's on Branch Ave, which seemed worlds away from where we were riding earlier that day. Shawn sweet talked a gas station attendant into letting him borrow some tools and with the tube from Benny's we were on our way. The day was winding down so we eventually just ended up riding a nice ledge at Waterplace park. There was one problem, the previous nights clock changing had made us late for our meeting time. Adding insult to injury Shawn's parents were looking for us. This was pre cell phones so the only thing we could do was go wait at the proposed meeting spot. Luckily it all worked out like things usually do and we finally got the cars packed up and made our way back to Taunton.

But not before getting lost and confused between the 95 and 195 signs, Shawn's mom saying she was going to call Dan Yorke about how confusing this was, Shawn then yelling "Mom, Dan Yorke doesn't give a fuck about you or these roads!", Shawn's dad then yelling at him, and in between them all and in the midst of everything, Brett plugging his ears with his index fingers and humming "lalalalala" at the top of his lungs.

I often wonder why kids are obsessed with riding spots that pros ride in videos and more importantly why people even travel to ride their bikes to spots that are basically the same as what they have available in their own city. Thinking about this story though, it sort of all makes sense.


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