Thursday, March 12

THE Chris Duncan Interview

Q: Alot of people are slamming your name in the BMX world. Calling you insane amongst other things. Do you have anything that you would like to say to these individuals?
A: Well I been thinking of that one for a long time. I retired from pro competition in 2002 because I DID go insane. I tried to feel better by quitting the spending of my cash on weed completely and stopped drinking the wine 40 bottles once and for all. However, the damage was already done. I was feeling worse and worse until I started therapy in 2005. My doctor is the US ski team psychiatrist Rob Gaffney. He is awesome! He helped me in my transition from pro athlete with all expenses paid to just a guy that loves bikes. I had serious issues.

Since 2001, I was dealing with the truth about my biological father. He abandoned me as an infant. I was raised by my mom and my dad (I call the man that raised me my dad because that's what he is of course!). I always thought that my dad was my biological dad. At age 21 after meeting my true biological father for the 1st time I was like SHIT....I feel weird. Then I smoked like all the pot in southern California to try and make the pain go away. It didn't work hence why I had to go to therapy in the first place. The main problem that I eventually over came was never knowing the truth about my biological father. I didn't know it at the time, but I was subconsciously searching for the completeness of knowing who my true father was. I was undeniably awkward from age 12 to 21 (at 21 – I went loony).

It all started with MTV having me think that I was gay for 10 years. The doctor called it the Pedro Syndrome. I was like WTF and he explained that when the 1st gay guy died of AIDS in the real world everyone was shockingly confused into thinking, that if they were gay they were basically dead too. The doc said that people who are insecure about them selves react very strongly to shocked confusion. Paranoia sets in and after that is false belief. I had the false belief of being gay even more by around 1998 when MTV showed dudes kissing all the time. This insecurity was super fueled by drugs when I started to smoke pot at age 16. So, like an old sandwich that would make one ill Pot & Gay insecurity were the halves of bread holding the meat of my lost daddy problem. I had already gotten sober, but therapy helped me realize what makes me drink and how to stop it. Therapy also made me comfortable with my sexuality ( I know that I'm not gay). Not that there is anything wrong with being gay, but it's just frustrating when a whole television network is confusing its viewers. Thanks MTV. LOL.

I'm totally mentally healthy now though. I did a complete revolution in the spectrum from sane to insane and back to sane again.

Q: How did the whole Josh Stricker beef or whatever start up?
A: Stricker and I never really fought-like knock down drag out fight till the other is unconscious.We never did an ultimate beat down to each other or anything like that. We just punched each other a few times. Then his friend hit me. Then the same friend beat me a foot or two away from the end of life. Then like 2 years later Stricker punched me in the head at a comp.

In chronological, it all goes like this: (Let me remind everyone that this was like 10 years ago)

The first incident.

At an HB (Huntington beach for all the north easterners) party I hit him a couple of times after he squirted the girl that I brought to the party. Her blouse was all wet from the super soaker he used and you could see her nipples. She was pretty pissed and gave me the you better do some thing look. Nasty was the percolator of the 1st incident. Neil woods brought me to his room (where Josh was at the time) and was like "DUNKDOG, you gotta do this boi" he said-"Hit em dog, hit em” I did and then I was soon blind sided by Neil Wood in the temple. I was “star struck” literally. I was fresh off the Florida boat into the land of sheep hills and I was like this is cool I got punched by Neil Wood. After the Neil Wood punch Josh got me a few more times and we were kinda ok. (physically and stuff)
The 2nd incident.

The next weekend I was punched in the middle of the face by Stricker's friend and I was pissed because I thought it was over. No big deal just one party punch.

The third incident.

Well one time about a year later I was at Neil Woods house again, chilling with Stephen Murry and the same guy that punched me at the party came over. I was drunk and called this guy out and I didn’t realize that he was a professional bar brawler. After the comments he proceeded to beat me senseless. First he hit me on the head with his skate board then he got on top of me and beat the vision out of my eyes. Stephen Murry had a broken Collar bone and couldn’t help get him off of me. Eventually I woke up and got away from him and ran into the garage. I was really beat down. I couldn’t see straight and the dude (Thompson was him name) chased me around the garage until Neil got home and told the dude to leave. I was mad and scared of that guy Thompson for years, but I got over it and appreciate the memory of the beat down. I realized that a person can only talk so much shit till he is knocked the fuck out.
The 4th incident.

One time a year or two after the Thompson beating I talked shit to Stricker at a contest and he punched me in the head so hard that I bled from the ear for the rest of the day. Crazy!
Current day (a few months ago).

At the 25 year S&M party me and Stricker laughed about all of this.
I’m a lot more lovable today and I have different policy towards anyone that hits me.

I have outlined this policy in the latest Chris Duncan Clothing ad

Q: Why did you make the switch from BMX to Mountain bikes?
A: Ryan Fudger canceled my subscription to BMX in like 2002 and I no longer was able produce media content for my sponsors. To make matters worse I had many haters in the judging booth at almost every contest. I couldn't win even though I was still innovating tricks. I lost interest in a battle that I couldn't win, so I moved to MTB. MTB was the same but very different at the same time for me. I was originally gonna promote just dirt jumping in MTB, but the dark side came with the industries demand for slope style madness.

I fucking hate Slope style! However, I don't hate the concept of the SS. I just hate how the courses are so frigging crazy. Sometimes I watch a video and wonder how no one died in the making of that contest. Crazy. I basically peaced out of that part of mountain biking and started to instruct for dirt jumping program and do jumping shows at schools for kids.

Q: When did you start these jumping shows for kids?
A: I started to do that in 2004. It was at the same time that I started to do dirt jump instruction.

I wanted to do something away from contests, so I could just get away from all the stress that being a pro gave my mind. The shows were a way to say this is “my show” the (Chris Duncan Show). It was really fun until I started to get burnt out / not get paid enough for my time.

I totally will do the shows if I can make decent money for my time. During the performances, I would really go to another dimension while doing them. I learned how to really make people love me without the contest vibe. Whether it was the teachers or all the kids at a show, I made sure that they all loved me at the end of any show. Shows are hard work and it's basically hard to make a living at them. The gigs don't come as easy as they should (even if you are really good at them and have a rep). So I basically stopped perusing a full time effort at doing them. I really like to do shows and I'm really happy that I put so much time into them because it taught me a lot of skills for public speaking.

Q: You got the opportunity to design your own frame for Fisher, isn't that right?
A: I did and it was a bit disappointing. I wanted to have a mountain bike that was light and had the closest ergonomics to a BMX as possible. Well, I got the bike to feel like a BMX but the problem was the weight and LOOK of the frame. The guys at trek are great dudes, but I was disappointed at the way it all went down. I wasn't able to have any input on the way that the frame looked. It's a fugly frame. I had nothing to do with that, I wanted it to have clean lines similar to a Santa Cruz Jackal and it turned out the way it did. I didn't let them put my name on it because of the way it looked. The looks of the frame also contributed to the weight of it too. Super gigantic big seat stays and a 1.5 (UN-NEEDED)head tube. That thing was like 1-2 pounds heaver than it should have been.

Q: What is the process of designing one's own frame?
A: Well, you have to really know what you want at the time the dimensions go to paper. When I first started to ride in order to keep up with the times I would buy what ever was closest to what I was looking for. When I would start the process of designing a frame I would always look into my current skill demands. If I wanted to do a certain trick easier and I could design a frame around it I would try and make it happen. When I designed BMX frames for Free Agent I was always trying to get the chain stays shorter. The precision building process needed to make that happen was hard to do since the FA frames we more of a mass produced design. Sometimes it was frustrating.

Q: I understand you licked Leigh Ramsdell's head and hands while he was commentating at the X-Games. What was the deal with that?
A: Sometimes at comps I would get board and frustrated at the same time. The nature of big money dirt comps are that you always HAVE TO WAIT till you can roll in.

The camera guy was telling me to wait for like 5 minutes so he could get a shot of riders in the back ground while Leigh was interviewing. I was sick of waiting (I wanted to ride) so I licked Leigh for the shot to piss the camera guy off. I also thought it would be funny too. It was!

Q: How are your mountain bike lessons going?
A: The mountain biking lessons are going at the same rate that they always have gone: steady. The MTB instruction industry is growing. I'm really looking forward to teaching BMX lessons too. That market has not taken off yet because of the exclusion of BMXer's from skateparks. “BMX -coach” Oh yeah!
When every town in America has a bike friendly park you'll see me as BMX coach.

Q: When is CDC going to drop?
A: I actually just finalized my manufacturing techniques.
I use stencils and spray paint to do my designs on 100% cotton shirts. I found out that using an iron to cure the paint to the shirt after it drys is totally the key. After the paint is ironed it bonds with the fibers of the shirt and it can be washed and will keep the color. Currently, I'm doing all my shirts this way and I will have a few designs that people can choose from on the CDC website . I'm also gonna do heat transfers onto 50/50% Cotton/polyester shirts too. The reason that I wanna use that technique is to put the CDC ads that I come up with directly onto a shirt. I have a prototype that I didn't make and I like the quality of it, but I'm currently searching for the right ink jet transfer paper that I feel works the best.
The first round of shirts will be for my team riders and will be the spray paint style. So far the team consists of 4 riders:
Steve Blodt, Capone Rider, Big Daddy, and Deuce.

Q: One more. You think you could throw down another quad truck fro I R Minus?
A: Those days are over. I was on a mission that day. I was such a mental case back then.

Now I just do what ever comes completely natural when I ride. I'm not like Miron: a BMX pro that doesn't ride any more, I ride. My body is still in OK shape. My body is better than average because I never did any shit that I felt I couldn't REALLY do. I always believed that skill is really about longevity on your bike and not just saying fuck it I hope I make it. I always knew that I wanted to make BMX an all time thing. Looking back, the funniest thing that I remember about competing was when I wasn't feeling the course or the general vibe I chose to not ride. Even though I flew there on the sponsors dime I always believed to fallow what my heart told me. Back then (1999) in dirt jumping it was unheard of to fuck off a potential top three placing at a contest. I use to have hard feelings and would even say to my self that in circumstances like those I was choking. The reality was I was just doing simple self preservation. I instinctively knew that I needed my body to stay some what healthy so I could use it to do what I love for a long time.

Riding is therapy for me.

Chris Duncan Clothing