Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 50

Skiff Smithison grew up in the hills of West Virginia, in a town called Switchcord Crossing, where his older brothers--he had four--passed down between them the art of the dirt bike. Skiff was on a bike by the time he was five, learning how to keep the bike under him, how not to fly over the handlebars by braking too hard.

And Skiff loved his dirt-bike.

By the time Skiff was in high school, his interest in dirt-biking had yet to wane, and he was gaining new interests. He loved to read, and could curl up with a good book on Dirt-Biking for hours. He began to sketch and paint, and soon learned the precise shade of brown that
most closely resembled the freshly churned dirt as it parabola'd through the air off the rear tire of his awesome electric blue 200cc Honda. He wrote bad high-school poetry for his bad high-school poetry

O, how I love to study the species
With its lovely four strokes filling 200cc's
The future is now! It's the ADs, not BCs!
Alas, you may now, re: my nutz, suck on these, please.

Skiff wasn't much of a dirt-bike racer, nor were his older brothers. They preferred to roam the hills and hollers of Switchcord Crossing on trails they often cut themselves. One afternoon in the late summer haze, the brothers Smithison almost literally ran into a black bear, the encounter costing Skiff's older brother Reg his life--clogged square across the face by the angry ursus--and a panic-caused crash left Skiff without the use of his legs, paralyzed from the waist down.

Today Skiff works as a guidance counselor for Switchcord Crossing High School.

This entry is a GUEST POST! Ben Compton is taking the reins today. If you'd like to write a guest post let me know and I'll send a picture your way!

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