Hosoi


Christian Hosoi

Christian Hosoi (Photo credit: dmourati)

Hosoi: My Life as a Skateboarder Junkie Inmate Pastor
Christian Hosoi with Chris Ahrens. HarperOne, $26.99 Hardcover(336p) ISBN 978-0-06-202430-5

I recently reading a new book called Hosoi: My Life as a Skateboarder Junkie Inmate Pastor about Christian Hosoi (pronounced Hau-soy)

Christian Hosoi was arguably the best skateboarder in the world, turning it into art. His nickname was Christ, and he invented a maneuver called the Christ Air [launches and forms a cross with his hands and board in one hand], but he says this was “all without having a clue what the name of Jesus Christ really means.” [240] But drug and sex addiction took him from high in the air to crashing down at the bottom of the pipe. He says, “They called me Christ, but that was just a nickname and one I could never live up to. My hope and prayer is that you also meet the One and Only.” [308]

Hosoi is a little over the top in talking about fast life and weed but put together with excellence in writing and photos and a captivating story and storytelling.

You don’t have to like skateboarding to like Hosoi. Brilliantly written with Chris Ahrens, pro skateboarder Christian Hosoi does more than tell-all but quotes friends and includes more than 100 photos to show how he rose to the top of his sport and turned it into art.

You do have to tolerate a lot of second-hand smoke in Hosoi’s book, but this helps readers feel the gravity of drug and sex addictions that brought Hosoi crashing to the bottom of the pipe. “I can see now that God has been calling me all my life. I’m named Christian and have worn crosses ever since I can remember. My nickname is Christ, and I invented a maneuver called the Christ Air [launches and forms a cross with his hands and board in one hand], all without having a clue what the name of Jesus Christ really means.” [240]

Hosoi vividly recounts the California skateboarding scene with friends and stuff they smoked, shot up, and swallowed. A friend recounts, “You’re not Christian Hosoi anymore; you’re a junkie just like me, only on a different drug.” [212] This tell-all and fall from grace is different from all the others in its rad truthfulness mixed with evangelical fervor in the end.

Even in talking about faithfulness to his soon-to-be wife, it’s embarrassingly honest. About his prison time he says, “There are no women here, but I curtail my fantasy life and decide that I’m not even gonna masturbate anymore.” [240]

And somehow in all the autobiographical mix of self-deprecation and aggrandizement, his true desire shines through: “They called me Christ, but that was just a nickname and one I could never live up to. My hope and prayer is that you also meet the One and Only.” [308]