Meeting celebrities is always a tossup. Will they be friendly? Will they talk to me? Will I even be able to remember my own name or complete a sentence? Probably not. The most embarrassing encounters, however, are the ones we didn’t even realize were happening. Take these poor souls for example, who met skateboarding legend Tony Hawk and didn’t even know it.
Most of us associate the name Tony Hawk with anything and everything related to skateboarding.
He’s pretty much a living legend.
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I'm almost 50, and I never imagined being able to skate into my adult life, or that anyone would still care if I did. To celebrate, I filmed 50 tricks that I've created (or pioneered on vert). #50tricksat50 video drops tomorrow on @ridechannel. Thanks to all of you that made this dream possible. It's been an unreal ride, and I'm not done yet.
And while many people might remember him like this:
This is Tony Hawk now:
Still looking great, if I may say so.
We bring this up because, apparently, he’s not recognizable to everyone—even people that read his ID.
TSA agent (checking my ID): "Hawk, like that skateboarder Tony Hawk!"
Her: "Cool, I wonder what he's up to these days"
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) March 21, 2017
Some have even mistaken him for a famous cyclist.
TSA agent (staring intently): I’m trying to figure out who you look like before checking your ID.
TSA: that cyclist Armstrong!
Nearby agent: that ain’t Lance Armstrong
Me: he’s right
TSA: oh you look like that skateboarder (checks ID). Same last name too! Crazy!
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) August 21, 2018
Come on now.
And a football player.
guy at restaurant: "you famous?"
me: I think that depends on who you ask
him: "anyone ever tell you that you look like Tom Brady?"
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) August 17, 2017
There seems to be a lot of confusion at airports.
To clarify: my legal name is Anthony
TSA agent checks my ID, looks at me, looks at ID, looks back at me quizzically and loudly says
"Tony Hawk's my favorite skater"
Me: I’ll tell him.
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) June 21, 2018
In addition to the planes themselves.
Woman on plane retrieving her luggage in the overhead:
"Who's skateboard is this? It's blocking my bag"
me: that's mine, you can pass it here
her: "It's yours? You ride it?
her: "Are you any good at it?"
her: cackles maniacally, exits plane
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) April 16, 2018
All he needs is the music from this montage to make the moment perfect.
One woman was even rude to Hawk.
But karma comes around.
And this guy was a straight up a-hole.
guy on escalator: Hey are you Tony Hawk?
him: you still skate?
me: yes, quite often
him: but you're not that recognizable!
me: I'm not sure what that means… but you recognized me, so here we are
him: [blank stare]
– escalator ends –
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) June 12, 2018
Why I oughta…
Fortunately, kind people do exist—even if they’re clueless.
Dude at gas station in Iowa: "Anyone ever tell you that you look like a young Tony Hawk?" He is my new favorite person.
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) August 17, 2014
Woman at airport: "My husband told me you're an awesome something something. Are you?" Me: "Yes, in fact it's the title on my business card"
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) July 15, 2013
So if you ever come across someone who might be Tony Hawk, it’s best to do what this guy did.
Guy at grocery store:
"you ever get mistaken for Tony Hawk… or are you Tony Hawk?
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) July 14, 2018
At least Hawk has a great sense of humor.