Skating legend Tony Hawk has achieved the perfect level of fame. He’s famous enough to be rich and afforded access to cool stuff, but not so famous that he can’t do normal things. Hawk is the sort of famous where you go hey, wasn’t that…just after he walks away.
Hawk has famously shared stories of his non-fame for some time now. Basically, he keeps running into people who wonder if he’s Tony Hawk, or if he knows Tony Hawk, or does he know his name is the same as a famous skater? But now, on the very last day of the year, Hawk shared the most 2020 moment. Naturally, it was an encounter from a COVID testing line, and it quickly began trending on Twitter, which loves to revel in his ability to fly under the radar.
at a Covid testing site (wearing masks), handing over paperwork for me & two of my kids:
woman looking over papers: “okay… Anthony, Keegan and Kadence… Hawk? Are you guys related to Tony Hawk?”
her: “Are you pulling my leg?”
me: no, we are all directly related to him
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) December 31, 2020
These tales from Hawk are always great because he takes it all in stride. He clearly understands fame is funny and fickle. Here are a few personal favorites from years past.
Flight attendant checking overhead bins, sees four skateboards
Him, jokingly: “is Tony Hawk on this flight or something?”
Looks down, sees me
Him: “I guess he is”
— Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) July 13, 2018
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
Hawk has said he gets recognized pretty often, but it’s not always good enough to warrant a tweet.
“It happens actually more often than I write about, but it’s usually not a really funny interaction,” Hawk told Business Insider this year. “I think sometimes people, I assume, get excited, and they’re trying to register it… so they’ll just sort of say things without really giving them critical thought. I think that’s usually what ends up happening where it’s like ‘you’re, uh, T-T-Tom Brady!'”