old school bmx homemade jump ramp

You’ll see it quite often on Facebook and other social media sites—us Gen-X 40-somethings talking about how domesticated and “super-safe” our society and its kids have become. Sad to say it, but it’s true.

But let’s not get into that right now. Instead, let’s celebrate how awesome things were back in the day and leave this post with sentimental smiles on our faces. Just look at the image above, courtesy of “Brian P” on VintageBMX.com. Original caption on the post reads:

livin’ large and takin’ charge: Plywood launch and grandma’s house back in 1979.

Ah, nothing better than building your very own jump ramp from plywood, a milk crate and…what’s that, perhaps grandpa’s old red toolbox? Set it up! In a later post, Paul Springer brings up the same photograph with the following comment:

I was looking through the pictures again just for kicks, look closely at how the ramp is supported. It’s a wonder any of us are alive… I think we all fabbed up some mickey mousy jumps just to catch air!

Too true, sir. We took risks. Even tremendous ones at times. But it was all in the pursuit of adventure and all-out, unfiltered fun—there was absolutely nothing better than to feel yourself launch in the air with the wind in your hair on your very own, beloved BMX bike…those few moments of goose-bumped weightlessness as you took flight and felt the bike float precariously away from you…and that landing which you either nailed or you didn’t, either ending well-received by your neighborhood friends simply because you had the balls to do it in the first place. Yes folks, those risks reaped rewards, ones that we can still reflect on 30+ years later.

Thanks for the memories, guys.

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