If you've been following my work for the past year (since 3/13 to be exact) you know that the ongoing pandemic and its relation to skateboarding has been a hot spot for me. In fact, you can probably recall the two weeks that I completely lost my mind on the podcast around that time.
I said what I said and I don't regret it one bit. Yet, here we are almost an entire year since the world shut down and, yes, it does appear that we are inching closer and closer to whatever sense of normalcy our entire planet will be blessed with soon.
With that being said, I wanted to talk about Nyjah Huston's latest misdemeanor charge of hosting a Covid-19 superspreader party.
Yep, you heard that right and I know this comes as a shock to not a single human on the planet.
My first thought was, "Just one party!?".
Even if you don't follow Nyjah odds are you have seen retweets or some footage of his antics on your social media timeline over the years. He continues to be the most polarizing rider on the planet by way of constantly doing things his way or the highway (@ 104 MPH+ - allegedly). He's since left Element for some unknown reason and still appears to have aspirations of performing on the biggest stage of them all, the Olympics. Well, at least I think.
I know I've joked about his short movie that he created last year stating the fact that he will be an entire year older when/if the games begin, but at this point it is something to take very seriously. More often that not, I wonder if he truly wants it. On the regular, he goes from looking as if he is the absolute front-runner to win gold to acting as if he doesn't even realize what is truly at stake.
Sure, he is only 26 and technically a "kid", but the fact that he still views himself as invincible just might come back to kick him in the butt. In fact, I feel it may have already started. Or be too late.
I think the average age when an adult finally figures out his/her life or "get's it" (I was looking for the word "maturity") is around 25.
We are officially at that sweet spot now. That proverbial "fork in the road". Sure, not all people are created equal, but I feel the next few years are literally going to make or break Nyjah's career. I 100% believe that. We are at that point, right here, right now. We've seen plenty of maskless parties, reckless behavior on and off the road (car and motorcycle), and signs that a shift in either direction is inevitable.
He also seems to be struggling to stay healthy these past few months and just might be losing his magic touch by the minute. I can hear some of you now, "Dude, Rick. You've got it all wrong, man. He's fine. Just shut up and go push mongo or something."
I don't know. There's just something about this latest misdemeanor charge that is resonating with me. Something is different this time around. And not in a good way.
Considering his struggle to stay healthy, while continuing to maintain his current lifestyle, the last thing he needs is time away from "training" in order to appear in court. But nevertheless, something tells me that with his money and notoriety his team of managers/lawyers has his back.
Could he actually get sentenced to jail some time? Maybe.
Will he actually serve time? I think you know the answer.
However, there is still something very serious to consider here.
And it's not just the fact that this recent charge is going to be living in his head rent free for the next few months/year. Sure, he seems to have a unique talent to stay laser focused on the task at had, under very high pressure situations, but the fact that he is now lumped in to the now 20,000 Covid-related deaths in L.A. might be some cause for alarm.
I'm just going to come right out and say it, unless Nyjah decides to shift his priorities, his focus, his crew, and regimen his hopes and dreams of Olympic glory are going to end in a nightmare. Plain and simple.
I feel that it can go two possible ways from here.:
Extreme? Yes. Probable? Very.
I really do feel that this recent charge is going to have way more detrimental effects on Nyjah than he thinks. Yes, he's clearly shown us that he is capable of doing amazing things under insane amounts of pressure, but as I said, this one feels different. It is different. It should serve as a huge wakeup call for him (and his team).
Otherwise, it will end up being that the very thing (Covid-19) that stalled his debut in the Olympics will end up contributing to the demise of his skateboarding career for good. Talk about a double whammy...and irony.
We'll just have to what and see what happens next. It's your move, Nyjah.
Skateboarding changed my life.