Bud Garso

     Intro Written by Bradley Garso (pictured below).

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Bud is my son, so I’ve watched him throughout his whole life. Here are a few observations.

When Bud was in his mother’s womb she would sit next to the big half-pipes and wooden mini-ramps that I was skating at the time. So the fast-rolling, slapping, and grinding sounds of skateboarding were something Bud was born knowing. And right from the beginning of his life, Bud’s physical coordination was built by a daily stream of activities that grew from the living room to the backyard, to the local playgrounds and the swimming pools and parks, and the lakes and mountains that we visited wherever we went. Eventually, Bud’s physical development also included years of serious traditional karate workouts. And I was always pleased with his abilities.

Until the day I saw him on his first skateboard, at the age of thirteen. On that day, as I watched him flounder, I was sad to think that he had chosen something he would never do well at.

Seriously, it was awful. And day after day I continued to watch him, and it only seemed to get worse. For weeks, and then months, he didn’t even try to learn to push or roll forward on the skateboard, which confused and even irritated me! Instead, he would stand completely still on the board, staring down at it, and then suddenly perform some kind of spastic jumping motion, jumping upward while the skateboard flopped uselessly on the ground below him. 

But I stayed quiet (mostly because I didn’t know what to say), and I wondered why Bud wasn’t finding the fast-rolling and smooth carving coordination of skateboarding that I had enjoyed.

What I didn’t know, was that Bud wasn’t trying to roll or carve on his skateboard – he was trying to make the board, and himself, fly upward. And not just “fly” – but to fly with a magic that is born from a mind-body coordination that is so subtle it is certainly one of the most difficult set of sports movements ever conceived – the ollie (with real control), and from the ollie to the flip-tricks. I’m talking about high ollies and big flip-tricks! That was what Bud wanted to acquire.

And the fact that Bud’s skateboarding vision was so far beyond mine, is not lost on me. In time, many years later, Bud was nicknamed “Switch Master Bud” by some local skaters, because he could (almost unbelievably) do most of his regular tricks while going switch (in the opposite direction/backwards), reversing the co-ordinations required of each foot, which blows even skaters minds. Can you imagine?

A few years later, as a whole other level of progression, Bud created and ran the coolest Skate Shop in Prescott – Bud’s Hidden Shop. It was more than a skate shop, it was a Skate & Art Shop. And there was great skate stuff, and clothing, and jewelry, and art of many kinds, and poetry readings, and skate-camps, and more! And it stoked local skaters, young and older. And Bud’s mother Joy and I felt it was an awesome manifestation of his love for skateboarding and the local skate culture that he grew up in.

Nowadays, I can’t tell you what amazes me more about Bud: his skills, or his unbroken flow of creativity, or the deep bliss it all brings him. That’s my view, these fifteen years later.

Now I’ll let the man speak for himself. The following questions were written by Bud more than seven years ago as a way to interview skaters. Interestingly, this is him interviewing himself – with a seven year time warp thrown in. Enjoy.

Why work so hard for a trick?
-It’s like conquering a monster, and it can be a foreseeable progression.  It’s also fun!

NameBud Garso
Age: 21
Type of Job/SchoolingLibrary Circulation Staff/College
Years Skating: 8

What’s your first skateboarding memory?
-Rolling around on my butt.  Or slowly going down a hill with my Dad helping.

What’s your favorite skateboarding memory?
-Going back and forth on a small piece of rough flatground at night in the winter-cold with only a T-shirt on doing switch kickflips and switch heelflips over and over for over an hour.

Ever quit?  Want to, or say you’ll quit?
-At first because I couldn’t ollie I did, then took a break, and have taken breaks during bad times.

Where did you start?  Did that influence you?
-Rough flatground.  Yes, it gave me a technical and street influence.

How would you describe the feeling of skateboarding?
-Mastering focus and control of the body.  Interacting with the world.  Adrenaline, accomplishment.

Why do you keep skating?

Do you care about the history of skateboarding?
-Absolutely, cool stuff.  Fun and interesting to me.

Do you care about the current skate media?
-Less and less but yes.

What else is like skateboarding to you?
-Flying.  Not much else.  Bodily, karate and dancing.  Interactively, mountain climbing and being crazy.

What isn’t like skating?
-Anything with rules and constraints.  Laziness, sitting around.  Anything forced.

What was the first hard “trick” you worked for?
-Ollie for a long time, then a terrible heelflip.  Worked for them all and got results.

Why work so hard for a trick?
-It’s like conquering a monster, and it can be a foreseeable progression.  It’s also fun!

What’s your favorite thing to do on a skateboard and why?
-Switch manuals because the balance feels great, ollies for the raw feel, and varial heelflips for the pop/flip/spin/catch.

Is there a trick you don’t think you’ll ever be able to do?
-Pressure flips.  What the heck?

What do you hate about skateboarding?
-Broken boards and misconceptions.

Is there any maneuver you would purposefully not do?
-I did benihanas on THPS, good on that now.  Axle stalls scare me even though they are simple.  Screw it.

What’s the trick you can do every time that surprises you?
-Nollie FS flip, switch pop shuv.

What’s your dream “tricks”?
-Switch flip manual/nose-manual, lazer flips on lock, and a switch BS noseblunt.

What’s your favorite terrain and why?
-Manny pads and ledges because they are easy on me and have many possibilities within simplicity.  I like it all though besides rails.

What do you hate about skateboarding?
-Broken boards and misconceptions.

Best (worst) injury?  Healing time?
-Jacked ankles resulting in months of healing time.

How do you overcome fear.
-I’m not sure.  Focus and determination, courage to defeat the beast.

Do you remember the details of your first setup?
-A green velocity street-team blank, nameless trucks, 25 stickers, green gel wheels, and world industries risers.

Did you start with friends or alone?
-Alone, but I found friends eventually.

Was it hard or easy at first?
-So hard, but for some reason that attracted me.  I wanted to make it easy.

Was there anyone or anything that especially inspired you to start or keep skating?
-My Dad and Jesse Lopez.  Also my own expectations.

Do your parents ever have a problem with skateboarding?
-Thankfully no!

When did you realize you were a skater?
-When I kept coming back after broken boards and injured body parts.  I just kept trying over and over after failed attempts and wouldn’t stop.

How do you feel about skateboarding now compared to when you started?
-My love grows.

What is most important about skateboarding to you?
-Progression and fun.  Progressive fun.  Doing new things, skating new things, and feeling free and interactive.

Was it hard or easy at first?
-So hard, but for some reason that attracted me.  I wanted to make it easy.



Filed under Interviews

“Welcome Back Ryan Z!”

The Prescott, AZ skate scene has produced some impressive skaters and it is hard to pick favorites, but I have always had my eye on Ryan Zimmerman.  Beyond doing good tricks with style he also has a really solid head on his shoulders.  He is genuinely kind and considerate and his answers to my questionnaire five+ years ago were some of the most insightful thoughts on skateboarding I have ever read.  Needless to say I was excited when I found out he was moving back after five years in California, and even though I was done skating for the day Ryan got me hyped and we had a great session with Will Livingston at the park and a few street spots.  He may have made me too hyped though as seen by the slam at the end, but getting together and skating with friends makes the pain feel alright

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“Trail Skating”

The way I have wanted to ride my skateboard has always been evolving.  I used to want to skate big stairs and handrails, then I wanted to be a technical wizard, and then I randomly became obsessed with oldschool tricks.  Somewhere along the way I fell in love with the avant-garde skaters who utilize their surroundings in bizarre ways that ranged from gnarly to silly.  After becoming infatuated with this sub-genre of skating, my mind was blown when I was lucky enough to assist Clay Shank (clayshank.com) with a project that became “Journey to Skate Boulder”.  Skaters’ see architecture differently because of the possibilities on a board, but Clay opened my eyes to the possibilities of skating nature.

This new video was filmed in less than two hours and edited on the same day.  My friend Pat Fisher (buildinggnarnia.com) was in town and I randomly decided we should go out on a popular nearby trail for a session.  I first skated the trail  on New Years Eve and ever since I have wanted more.

I also have to give credit to the cruiser board you see used in this video.   I set it up over four years ago as a test-model for gear I would eventually sell in my soon to be opened shop.  Somehow every piece of my wonderful cruiser board has lasted all these years throughout some serious use (and bearing cleaning).  It is at the point where I wonder if I should retire the deck, but I feel like its life isn’t properly spent until I break it.  I honestly cherish every single session I have with it now and wish for many more.

Enjoy this simple edit showing the day in the life of that weird guy that brings a skateboard on a dirt-trail hike.  Yeah, I’m that guy, and I am stoked!

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