Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Out Here with Bobby Taylor

Out Here with Bobby Taylor

So you been in these streets for a long time, what first inspired you to skate and why?

 Man, what inspired me to skate; that is a hard question. To be honest, I think I started skating because everybody was getting into it around me. SKATE TV, ya dig, lol. Before my friends and I started skating, we used to ride bikes. We all would just try to wheelie as far as we could and jump these dirt ramps in front of Nipher Middle School. I was inspired by a local guy, Jimmy SixKilla. Supposedly, SixKilla, had a few sponsors and was getting coverage in some magazines. Legend has it that one day while SixKilla was riding home, his front tire blew out. Jimmy Six then decided to just wheelie the entire way home, like a hundred miles up and down mountains, lol. But naw, for some reason everybody just started skateboarding. And, once I got my first professional skateboard, I developed a passion for it, been out here, ya dig.

Describe one thing you would like to see evolve in your local scene?

Just see all of the different scenes  come together; hip hop, skating, breaking, hardcore, dub, and all the other subgroups. To me, all these subgroups are all one in the same.

What music gets you amped to skate?

This is a hard question. I often go through phases where I listen to commercial rap. Then, I wake up and realize that they're not talking about anything, so I switch to conscious hip hop.Then, when I’m tired of these fools preaching, I switch to jazz, so I can just hear instrumentals and not individuals verbalizing thoughts/ideas from their perspectives. Usually, when I start listening to jazz, I start to realize I need to focus on my own thoughts to get a clearer understanding of who I am and where I’m trying to go.

Sequence by Andy Wissman @ Radone 
Do you have any other passions besides skateboarding?

Yeah, when it rains I love to play pool, also I like playing ping-pong. I would not say ping-pong is one of my passions but it is super fun…if anybody thinks they can beat me in ping-pong (JACK D.) I am down for the challenge…lol…

What's one thing skateboarding has taught you about life?

If you really want something in life, you have to work for it.

So why did you quit skating and what are some of the reason you decided to start back skating?

Man, I quit skating around the age of 18. This is kinda of funny if you think about it because normally people tend to quit between the ages of 16 to 18 because of various reason like women, money, education, or drugs. I guess, I wasn’t exempt from those reasons either. 

Partying, dropping out of high school,  knee injury, and a few other events lead me to ultimately decide to put skateboarding in the back of my mind for a while. For me, quitting skateboarding was a devastating event. My first question was what do people do every day? I still have not figured that question out…So, after I finished up my school stuff…and had a little money in my pocket, I decided to get back on the board.
 Bobby Taylor-switch tailslide @ kingshighway. Photo by Worful

So, you were a former skate goon now a nuclear engineer. What's the difference in the lifestyles and which would you prefer?

This is also a hard question. I used to separate the two, meaning career and passion, but the more I think about it, they both complement each other to form my lifestyle. Being a skateboarder allows me to have a reason after work and to wake up early on my off days to explore the city, looking for new obstacles, encounter new people from all different walks of life, enjoying the day conversing and people watching with the homies.

 Just surfing around the city, I have realized that discovering the art of land surfing, in some way, has allowed me to make sense of my existence on this earth.
Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial. Photo by Pettaway

I’m not trying to get all philosophical, but just stating my purpose. I believe in life is to actually get out the house and to LIVE, meaning to not get engulfed by external distractions such as TV (i.e., reality television - why watch another persons reality when you can create your own?…just a simple question. I don’t have any time or desire to watch anyone elses reality), internet, and meaningless activities (on some other ish, ya dig) which I will probably regret the next day.

Bobby Taylor-Frontside Heelflip @ perryville. Photo by Worful

Now, my career provides a sense of security and challenges my analytical and problem solving skills. To be honest, I have skated so long that skating everyday gets old to me, so having a job which challenges me intellectually is like taking a brief vacation during the week and then when the weekend rolls around again I am back to cruisin around the city doing what I love. All in all, my career and passion both add a positive meaning to my existence.

You are one of the originators of WATC, what does "we are the city" mean to you?