BY ADRIAN EVANS
Okay, let’s start this out with blatant honesty.
Personally when it comes to credibility to speak on behalf of BMX I have little to none. Over the past ten years I’ve been lucky enough to have the free time and flexibility to ride frequently, travel often, and meet a lot of people in the scene that are completely out of my league when it comes to skill on a bike. This lifestyle, filled with great experiences has shaped me into the person I grew to be (for better or worse) and I will always be grateful for that. That being said, any Over Under blog posts or media should be taken with a grain of salt because of this. These posts are mostly just to share experiences and life lessons from someone who has been a fly on the wall of what is BMX since a young age. Cheers, Adrian Evans @nygelevans
If you fell for the clickbait title you’re lucky enough to read some scattered thoughts from someone who went to a private college on scholarship while still hanging out at skateparks with kids who sold dab carts for a living. But before I dive into it, please don’t make any bold life decisions based on my heavily biased opinions. There are many factors that play into certain decisions for everyone and this just happens to be how it worked out for me.
Most educational institutions boast their minority programs and the ethnic percentages of many students. This is rad, but in all honesty the diversity you see on a campus is far from what I have gotten out of riding. Being twelve years old and cut loose at a skatepark forces you into the extremes of social diversity. One of my oldest friends through BMX is an older Russian man named Ilya who has stories about the Cold War, the Mafia, and motorcycle clubs. I have also ridden ramps with a lawyer who offered to fly me out to Barcelona with him and his friends to ride just because I seemed mellow.
The spectrum of different personalities within bikes is insane. During college the main times I talked to other students were forced and if someone had different world views it usually ended up in a tense situation. No matter how different someone who rides is from me, the shared interest of BMX has been enough to break the wall.
There was a poster on campus advertising a study abroad month in Mexico City for $15k. My first thought was obviously, “What the fuck? I was down there for a week and barely spent a rack.”
Although I’ve never stayed at an all inclusive resort or been on a cruise; I’ve definitely been able to see parts of the world the general population doesn’t know exists. Any kind of action sport has a built in network of people across the globe. From my experience most BMX dudes have an open door BYOB policy for their houses. This usually comes with a free tour of the city which usually skips over the tourist bullshit. Cruising around with locals from any area for a couple days is probably a better cultural opportunity than anything a travel agency would shove you into.
Every rider has a different opinion on how much social media presence is cringy and how hard certain people should try to push for that sweet sweet $500 a month to jump down 20 stairs. Not trying to dive into that. Most riders from this Gen Z/ Millennial era know their way around the Gram. Learning how the algorithms work from trying to get Cult to follow me back while I was in high school (it didn’t work) taught me more about personal branding and the three C’s of marketing than 3 years in a lecture hall did. Every rider that keeps up on their profile is industry level as a brand ambassador or social media manager. Shit, I’ve met boomers that make six figures knowing less about analytics for their company than 13 year olds trying to make their first tailwhip blow up on TikTok. Without our experience in BMX Gold Blood would have gone bankrupt after a month.
These were three of the many things BMX taught me about life that college didn't. If I don’t get too many angry emails from parents there’s gonna be a part two in the works soon. Cheers