Updated: May 17, 2020
My Introduction to the SC Skins was before I was even a Skinhead. A scruffy kid with a [a]big smile, shaggy hair, a punk T, shorts, Converse Allstars and a skateboard who smoked weed and drank too much and did anything he could to get to a punk rock show, meet girls (unsuccessfully most of the time) and hang out with my friends.
See I grew up in a small town. I went to the same schools and had the same teachers as my pops. There really wasn’t anywhere I could go or anything I could do to get away. Gotta Getaway by SLF [b]was one of my favorite songs! (shameless plug for a possible soundtrack).
My friend, Joe [c]had a Toyota Pickup. Joe was cool. He had spikey hair and a bitchin’ leather jacket with spikes and punk band graffiti all over it. Joe’s jeans were spiked so tight I think he started the skinny jeans thing. I don’t know how he fit them over his docs. He also turned me onto the UK Subs in ’85. Demonstration Tapes [d]was (still is) an awesome record that I listen to on the regular.
So, Joe, in his pickup and a bunch of friends, mostly punks, one notable Skinhead, Tony, who I’ve known since we were 5, and are still good friends 40 years later, drove to Santa Cruz for a “night out”.
We were young and naïve and, at least I, didn’t know what to expect. I mean I’d gone to Club Culture, but this was different. See Joe had met a couple of people at a Club Culture show and had a good time, got drunk and (probably) laid. Sounded like a plan to me.
Anyway, in the back of Joe’s truck and off we went, drinking Old Milwaukee, freezing our asses off to Santa Cruz. We arrived and drove down Front Street until we met one of the guys from Joe’s previous outing. His name was Jason. Jason was a street kid, a couple of years older than us with his eyebrows shaved and SKIN – HEAD tattooed where his brows once were. Pretty fucking crazy, I thought but ok, better him than me.
Jason asks me, “what do you do?” Clueless kid I was responded with “huh?” Not understanding what he said, responded with “freezing my ass off”. Everybody had a laugh at my expense. Jason jumps in the cab of the truck and off we go.
A few miserable freezing minutes later we park and walk out to this abandoned (ICE) [e]factory on Laurel St. It was really desolate out there. I couldn’t see much. Mostly an empty field and rubble. I figured we were going to a drinking spot (we were).
I see some people walking towards us. Skins, Punks, GIRLS!! Next thing I know this Skinhead guy comes charging toward us on a beach cruiser. He jumps off the bike, drops it hard and walks towards us with his arms pumped out away from his body, testosterone flowing and says, in a guff voice, “I’m Jerry. What’s your deal?” He looks at me and says, “Hey Joe Hairdo, what’s your deal?”
To this day Tony calls me Joe Hairdo.[f] -Rob Sporleder