I often find myself reading this website and wondering, do people really care about what Tony Smith and the rest of the Alliance staff do each day? I assume the answer would be no, but you should never assume so I asked Tony, who confirmed that no one cares about him.
But today I found myself at Tony’s whim, since I, as usual, randomly fell in Orlando with no car, poached in on his couch and told him I was following him around for the day. And so, after a few hours in his new Benz, I began to realize that Tony is actually the coolest person in wakeboarding, as well as the hardest working one, and thought, you know what this website needs? A story about how cool he really is.
So here it is. The day started off early with some legal advice, since, as I read on this website, Tony recently got hit by a drunk idiot. Tony soaked up the information like a sponge and left the office even more on top of things than he was before, ready to enlighten me on the drive to wakeboard central. But while I tried to appear intelligent and cool enough to hold a conversation with him, Tony had little time for me as he was blowing up with important calls.
With just a quick stop off at a pizza joint for a lunch on the run, Tony proved that he’s not afraid to ball by ordering the figurative “rims” on pizza, pepperoni, despite it costing an extra 50 cents. But when you work this hard, you can’t be afraid to show it off from time to time.
With his blinged out slices on the dash, we pulled up to the gated community that is the central hub of the wake world, and Tony proved just how cool he was by punching in the code without having to call anyone. We drove around the community where he pointed out Danny Harf’s house with Rusty Malinoski’s new truck out front before pulling up in front of Parks Bonifay’s crib. This is where the alleged high ollie contest is supposed to go down and Tony planned single-handedly to make it happen.
He let himself in (seriously, how down is he?), but PB was no where to be found. Not discouraged, Tony helped himself to some pizza fixins in the fridge and then found Randy Harris’ paycheck which was still being delivered to Parks’ and had a chuckle about it to relieve some stress from his hectic day.
Since the house was not the spectacle of wake stars I had hoped for, I was stoked when we decided to head over to Danny Harf’s place. There we ran into Rusty, Chad Sharpe, Billabong team manager Chris Heffner and several Billabong reps who were rocking sweet, alcohol-induced hair styles. But there was no time for bro-ing down because PB wasn’t there and there were Honda PWC’s to move and accordingly, the hardest working man in wakeboarding didn’t stop working. With Shawn Watson on the phone he even ducked into the bathroom to multitask.
With that out of the way we headed over to Swatson’s house to drop off the skis. There, Shawn was waist deep in a hole, trying to fix a plumbing issue, while Tino Santori perfected the dirt bike course in the yard. Tony talked the talk and pretty soon we were headed back to PB’s in Watson’s boat with a piece of wood that would create the ollie plank for the contest, and some power tools.
With superior driving skills, Tony navigated the lake and soon had us parked in front of Parks’, where the man had finally shown up. Tony quickly and efficiently installed the plank with little to no help from Parks and roommate Jack Blodgett, ‘cause he truly is a jack of all trades.
With more accomplished by 2 p.m. than most people accomplish in a week, Tony had to head off to a doctor’s appointment and I decided that skateboarding might be more interesting than the rest of Tony’s day. Apparently I made the right choice, because in between phone calls later on, he told me the doctor took 2 hours and 40 minutes. “And you know what I did after that Brooke? I went right back to carrying the flame for the entire wakeboarding community.”