An interview with

Here it is, an interview with the amazing Brazilian skater, Bob Burnquist. He is one of the most positive, nicest, encouraging people I've ever had the pleasure of chatting with. Wishing Bob continued personal success and fulfillment, and again many thanks, here's our interview:

Do you think skating is an inborn skill that's developed, or do you think anyone can learn to do it?
I think that certain people are born with certain features that help them in being agile, although skateboarding is for anyone who feels like it.

What do you do to prepare for a skating event? Are you relaxed or more hyped up?
I don't really prepare for an event, I just get the dates, schedule them in, and fly out to where they end up being. I always have a few things in mind though, meet new people, get to know the area and respect the locals. Contests are just something I do that if I do good enough I get some extra money, If not, I had fun and I got to travel. You never lose.

What was it like being on the Warped tour? Did you like any of the bands? How does that compare to the XGames? (a show vs. a competition) Do you prefer one over the other?
The warped tour was fun, taking showers and listening to live Bad Religion isn't bad at all. The ramp they have is too small though, it's very hard on our bodies, skating every day two sessions a day is quite a toll, but I can't complain. I got to travel and have fun, the best of all is that I got to do it with Jen O'Brien.

Nothing really compares to the X-games. It's a major event and it's televised. It's not something I look forwad to every day. To tell you the truth, I only do it for my sponsors. I can name quite a few places I'd rather be other than the X-games.

Are you looking forward to the XGames this year, being near your hometown? What do you do for fun in and around SF? Do you have any favorite hot spots?
I'm living in San Diego now. But I do have some hot spots in San Francisco, street skating downtown at night is always a go. All the hills are a lot of fun to go down too.
I did a lot of surfing in SF when i lived there, the water is very cold but the waves are epic and worth the effort.

Has there been something - an injury or anything else - that made you think twice about what you are doing? Are you hard on yourself when a trick goes wrong? If you fall hard, is it difficult to get back up there and try again, or does it make you more determined?
There are always going to be a good slam here and there. I fell on my head one time at the Rio sul bowl in Brasil, I pinched a nerve on my back and couldn't skate for a while. I couldn't wait to skate again though, I never got discouraged by a slam, if anything it makes me want to try even harder.

When you say a trick goes wrong, do you mean trying something and landing something else or just trying something and not making it? If I try something and land something else, which happens a lot, I'm stoked. I learned something differrent. If I try something and I don't make it, I'll just get up and try again until I make it.

Depending on how hard I fall, I most likely will get up and try again. If I can't get up, I'll stay right where I am. =)

In social situations, are you more apt to introduce yourself or wait to be introduced? Do people recognize you in public? Do you consider yourself a celebrity? Do others that you know?
There's one thing that actually gets me, people come up to me and say "Hi Bob," and I can't return the customized greeting cause I don't remember their name or I actually never met them. There are so many names!

Every now and then people will come up to me and say they appreciate the way I skate. It is very flattering and I enjoy sparking good vibes in people.

I don't consider myself a celebrity. Bruce Willis is a celebrity, he's recognisable almost everywhere he goes, and what does he do? He's an actor, he Acts, right? It makes people want to act in real life. If you ask me, acting is no good. There's no truth in acting. Which brings me to a conclusion: Celebrities are an illusion. Glamour is not needed in order to survive. That diamond ring that makes them "glamourous" could feed 100 hungry people in Somalia. What's happening on planet earth Jen? I don't consider myself a celebrity, I'm just a skateboarder and very proud of it....A famous skateboarder maybe, but it doesn't make me any more special.

What are your three best qualities? Three worst? Is there something you would like to change about your life or yourself? Who is someone in your life that has affected you the most?
I'm alive, I have love in my life and I know that God is almighty. I have faith.
I'm impure as a human being, I am selfish at times and my pads stink a lot.

I'm living my life to learn what it's like to be an individual. I shall learn not to be selfish and live in truth. It's a challenge and it's not easy to do around all the impurity on this planet. There are some amazing people here as well, the Dalai Lama is one of the greatest spirits materialized on earth. I admire his perseverence.

Jen O'Brien is teaching me about love and relationship with a great friendship. She is definitely the most influential in my life right now.

Do you visit Brazil a lot? Is your family mostly there, or did they move to the US too? What's the skating scene like there?
I try to visit Brazil as much as I possibly can. My Dad still lives in Rio de Janeiro, everyone else moved out here. My mom and two sisters live up in Northern California.

Skateboarding in Brasil is very strong and self sufficient. We make pretty much everything needed to skateboard.
If for some reason american products couldn't make it down there, skaters would still have the products to skate. Maybe not with that much quality, but at least there would be something. The skaters down there have the fire, it's awesome to go back and see all the new faces in skateboarding, ever since I moved out things have been growing and more skaters are roaming the streets and parks of Brasil.

How long have you been online? Do you have a website, or do you want to make one? Will we see a How does it feel to do a netsearch about yourself and see tens of thousands of sites come up? What pages do you frequent?
I've been online for about 2 years now. I don't have a website yet but I'm working on it. I actually never ran a search with my name.
I enjoy checking out sites on skateboarding in Brazil. I also like to run searches on Books that are hard to find.

If you weren't a pro skater, what would you want to be doing? Is there anything you would really like to learn?
I guess I would be going to college right now and definitely would not be travelling the way I am right now. I try to read as many books as I possibly can. Computers are also my favorite thing. I enjoy learning the way they work. The internet is a HUGE and interesting place to visit.

What would you like to accomplish, both as a skater and personally in the future? Do you have any plans? Ever thought of starting your own skateboard company?
There are a lot of skateboard companies out there already, I would hate to flood the market with yet another company. I have plans to do something, like a branch of
the companies I ride for already, in Brasil. There are lots of things I can do. Right now, I want to skate.

Like mentioned, there are quite a number of sites where you can find info, pix, stats, and more on Bob. Some of those sites include my own skatecore (, transworld skateboarding magazine (, and brasil skate (

questions and pictures by jen and sar

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