January 18, 1997.
Chenga World, Cleveland, Ohio.
I wrote “The Dream” in 1996.
It was my call to arms, my mission statement for the skateboard industry and the skateboard culture that I hoped to help cultivate and participate in. It was the spelling out of the pro-career that I wanted to have and the things that I hoped to accomplish as an active member of the skateboard community.
I took to the road throughout 1996 and 1997 and shared these words with audiences at skate shops, skate parks as well as in restaurants, coffee shops, music clubs, basements and in parking lots all across the United States. Anywhere skaters were willing to gather and hear me out, I went and I spoke and I shared my thoughts, feelings and dreams.
No doubt the skateboard landscape was changing at that time and I felt it was as important as ever to know what role I wanted to play in that change, to define my vision and participate in the dialogue. My focus was then and always has been about fun, expression and creativity through skating. I have always valued the experience of the individual skater over the mass-identity of skateboarding.
It was my dream back in 1996 that skateboarding would be as meaningful to the next generation of skaters as it was to me when I first started out — And that is still my dream and my focus today.
— Mike V