Ask Ping

March 3, 2006 9:30am | by:

Are you going to homeschool your kids?
Donell Thomas. Hesperia CA

Dear Donell,
Yeah, that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I’ve always wanted to say that I’m the proud parent of a socially dysfunctional, math-and-science-challenged kid with no friends. How many intelligent, successful people do you know who are a product of homeschooling? I know a few. There are certainly a few friends of mine who chose homeschooling or dropped out of high school altogether and still managed to become winners. I’m just saying that the odds are slim. Like, Paris Hilton-on-crack slim. As in you

have a better chance of finding your soul mate on MySpace than becoming a homeschool success story. Homeschool can work, theoretically. But the parents must set boundaries and goals and keep their children motivated in order for that to happen, and it usually doesn’t. It boggles my mind to see how many parents are willing to gamble their child’s future on motocross racing. They pull their kids out of school as young teenagers (or even earlier) to focus on racing. What happens when they don’t end up being one of the very few riders to make it in the sport? Well, then it’s off to their local AM/PM for a 10-hour shift as a “petroleum technician” and hot dog “vendor.” That is one gamble I will not take with my kids, Mr. Thomas.

Ping, I remember you as a real fast intermediate on a Suzuki wearing JT gear. What the hell happened to you?
Kenny Maddux. Chino CA

Dear Kenny,
After my rookie days as a Suzuki support rider running JT Racing gear, I went into an 11-year slump that I never truly recovered from. I blew out an ACL in my left knee, then did the same in my right knee, broke my femur, broke my hand, broke some fingers, separated a shoulder, cracked some ribs, separated my other shoulder, broke a bike in half, sustained several concussions, sprained both ankles, and broke both of my wrists on numerous occasions. I also got married, took a desk job here at
Racer X, gained about 12 pounds, and became fascinated with reality television. [Ed. note: Twelve pounds? Annually?] I mean, who didn’t love the psychological train wreck that was Britney and Kevin’s Chaotic? Personally, I liked Brit much better before she got Federlined, but I’ll take the entertainment either way. Anyhoo, that’s my story. It could be worse. At least I don’t live in Chino.

Hi Ping,
Freestyle MX is really gay. What are the chances of it just going to a dark corner and dying? Not that I could even think about pulling off a decent whip without wadding my brains out, but it really sucks. The ads for the FMX companies are some of the worst things in Racer X. A bunch of dong pastries with way too many bad tattoos, trying to look hard. Yeah, you grew up in Thousand Oaks and you are hard, bro. I would rather see coverage of curling at the Winter Olympics than FMX. What are the chances?
Mike Jackal

Dear Mike,
Really? You’d rather watch curling? Because last week I was just about ready to catch a red-eye to Torino, run into the Olympic arena where the curling finals were being held, and scream at the top of my lungs, “This is not a sport, you poor, pathetic, broom-pushing bastards!” I used to tease people that golf wasn’t a sport so much as a long walk with a bag of sticks. I’ve argued that arm wrestling can hardly be considered a sport, and I even took took into consideration Sylvester Stallone’s cinematic masterpiece
Over the Top. But that ridiculous waste of time known as curling is the worst thing I’ve ever witnessed. Look, I know my boy Ronnie Renner is such a ham that he makes Lindsay Lohan look camera-shy when the spotlight is on, but all those guys are incredibly talented. Not only could you not pull off a decent whip, but you couldn’t muster up the testicles to even jump a freestyle hit. So even though most of the guys resemble Jaime Kennedy in Malibu’s Most Wanted more than the hard-core bikers they portray in public, they are all bad-ass on a dirt bike. Keep that in mind the next time you are snuggling up with cup of cocoa to watch a little curling, Mr. Jackal.