10+ years ago Nova and I were riding along the bike path when we were stopped by a boy who asked if I”d like to buy an old cruiser frame he had. I declined, we chatted a little about bikes and then we parted ways. Sometime after that the boy come by our house with his old bike wanting to fix it up. From that point on Jason became my bike building buddy and a friend to both Nova and I. Jason and I spent many nights and weekends in our garage building all kinds of bikes including cruisers, low-riders, tall and swing bikes. It was obvious Jason had artistic talent and was a “good kid” as Nova and I always noted to one another. We both enjoyed his company.
After riding my tall bike Jason asked if we could build him one. His only additional request was that it be taller than mine 🙂
I remember shortly after Jason left for home on his new tall bike I received a call from his mother “You trying to kill my son?” We all come to an agreement that Jason would always wear a helmet that I gave him when riding it. I won”t say whether he always stuck to our agreement or not. He rode the wheels off that tall bike.
Jason would often show up with presents he”d make for us in various art forms, painted, drawn or cut from metal.
Here is some painting on a chainguard he did for us.
I can”t recall how long our time together was but I”ll guess 2 years. Jason moved to another city and eventually out of state to peruse a career as an artist. Twice he has come by to visit us when back in town to see family. Each time, most recently just a couple of months ago, he has told me how much of an influence and role model I was to him and how our time in the garage and riding bikes likely kept him out of trouble during what can be vulnerable years. Wow! I had no idea and am so touched to know that.
Here you can view a gallery of Jason”s art and bikes from 10 years ago.
It is exciting to see the man and artist he has become.
Please take a moment to watch this video of Jason which was part of an artist swap between his town of Austin and New York City.