Back in The (Wednes)Day…

If you were a midpack motormouth from the East Coast BMX scene in the 1970s, Charlie Litsky left some ENORMOUS footprints for you to follow on your way to SoCal. I was a friend of Charlie's from the time we met at the West Palm Beach YMCA BMX track around '77 or '78, and I followed the path he blazed to California in 1982. Charlie's accomplishments as a TV/video host and sports agent predated similar moves from followers by a dozen years or more, and his professional arc was an inspiration for my own. I read Charlie's words on the pages of Bicycles Today, and doing so made me want to be a BMX journalist just like him. Charlie and I joked about that dubious dream at a party hosted by the publishers of BMX Plus! magazine in '91, then talked about his old friend and client John Tomac. Charlie was instrumental in creating the aura of cornfed hipness that surrounded mountain biking's first megastar, and Litsky's impact on the burgeoning MTB scene in the late '80s and early '90s can not be overstated. Charlie Litsky was a huckster with heart, and a serious visionary who never took things too seriously. Today's BMX and MTB racing scenes would be far different—and I think much better—if Charlie Litsky were still around to keep it funky.


No comments: