When do you officially become “old school”? Is there an age minimum? For BMX purposes I would assume that the prerequisites are: rode in the ’80s, owned a “Vision Street Wear” shirt or pair of shoes, watched “SK8 TV,” and had fold down pegs at some point. I think you also need to be in your thirties, and still be rolling at least on the weekends. You probably have front brakes, or you’re considering putting them “back on” so you can bust out the Miami hopper at random.

Papa Peraza giving you some classic golden oldie moves. His two sons David and Kevin can shred like no other.

Papa Peraza giving you some classic golden oldie moves. His two sons David and Kevin can shred like no other. Photo: Hines

And, you absolutely say the phrase “We use to do that…” every time you’re out riding with some of the younger guys. Those younger guys take it as a “Yeah, yeah, we get it, it’s already been done…” and some really pay homage to the “old dudes” of the sport. But, whether you’re stuck in the present and always looking to the future you should still know a little bit of history. History is what made your bike light, strong, and so sweet to handle. If Mat Hoffman and others weren’t out there breaking every bone due to poorly-built bikes, we’d probably never know where to throw a gusset. If people like Chris Moeller, Rick Moliterno, Steve Crandall, Ron Wilkerson, and the Dirt Bros didn’t branch out and do their own thing we’d probably be riding carbon fiber Specialized Fatboys right now. Might be decent for the racing scene, not so much for the street kids…

Kevin Peraza is definitely new school, but he knows his roots. Photo: Hines

Kevin Peraza is definitely new school, but he knows his roots. Photo: Hines

So, where do you fit in? When do the old schoolers become granddaddies of the sport, and when does the next generations move in? I consider myself more of a middle-schooler than old-schooler. However, I did ride a little in the late ’80s and owned a Haro Sport, but I didn’t really get deep into the sport until the mid-’90s. I’m part of the generation that overbuilt everything—giant sprockets, skinny bars, 50lb. bikes, baggy pants, and 48 spoke wheels. Oddly enough, I use to be able to bunnyhop higher then for some reason. Maybe I was stronger? Who knows…

“Screw that, I’m not old yet and I have the beanie to prove it!”

The other day I did miss that giant sprocket and motorcycle chain, though. I really wanted to sprocket stall this ledge like some old Gonz and Ratboy steez. But I didn’t because I was too worried that I might mess up my sprocket or chain. What has the world of BMX come too? Tight pants, pretty bikes, shoestring belts that look like man thongs when your pants start to fall, beanies in the summer, bars bigger than the frame, scooter bikes, the list goes on. Am I considered old school now? Probably, but that means I can get away with doing lame tricks and people still think I’m rad. That’s how the old school thing works, right? Screw that, I’m not old yet and I have the beanie to prove it!

What size girl pants do you wear? Whatever size my girlfriends are... Photo by Hines

What size girl pants do you wear? Whatever size my girlfriends are... Photo: Hines