Updated: Oct 3, 2020
The only thing that made Utah tolerable was the license plate claim to fame: "Greatest Snow on Earth." My dad was the first to get into snowboarding, and he got the rest of the family into it. He loved being the only black man in Salt Lake, and even more, he loved being the only black man at Snowbird.
From the projects to the ski slopes, "Irving from Inglewoooood!" made it.
He'd disappear half a day, and come back in a better mood. We wondered... What was he doing? Then, he got us all into it, and I got scared. I caught my edge and got the wind knocked out of me.
Snowboarding brought out the best and worst in everyone.. My mom complained a lot. My sister was a wuss. My brother jumped and did all the things. My dad became a more decent human on it. Overall, it was an intense family bonding moment.
My dad loved snowboarding. He spent money on his craft and eventually bought all his cars to drive up Little Cottonwood Canyon. Every time, we'd drive up the canyon, he'd blast this song:
& I was just as Disturbed. He'd blast it in the Gad Valley parking lot, head banging and making awkward eye contact with every stranger who looked our direction. I'm not saying a black man can't jam, but at 11 years old, I didn't want people looking at my family. Especially, during the end of this song.