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ISLAND Q&A | Bob Bitchin
Bob Bitchin is the publisher of Latitudes and Attitudes and the creator of Biker Lifestyle Magazine, FTW Newsmagazine and Tattoo Magazine. He just finished his 7th book “Starboard Attitude.” You can meet him this weekend at the 10th Annual Northwest Cruiser’s Rendezvous.
What inspired the name “Bob Bitchin?”
“The name Bob Bitchin came from Tommy Chong of Cheech and Chong. We worked out at the Gold’s gym in Santa Monica and they used the name Bob Bitchin in their “Up in Smoke” album. At the time I was riding with a motorcycle club and the name just kinda stuck.”
Do sailing, tattoos and bikes have anything in common, if so what?
“When I first started sailing in the ‘70s I knew I didn’t belong. Boaters were rich, I was poor. Boaters joined yacht clubs, I was not invited. The image of boaters at that time was of Biff and Midge standing at the yacht club rail with cocktail in hand. I was old Levi’s, torn T-shirt and varnish-covered shoes. But, as the years passed I learned that there was a brotherhood of cruisers just like there was a brotherhood of outlaws in the bike world.I think what surprised me the most was how many Harley riders there are who are now boaters. There is a huge crossover. As for tattoos? I started Tattoo Magazine in the ‘70s and now tattoos are as normal as wearing socks. Maybe even more so in the boating world, where we try not to wear shoes.”
What advice would you give a 25-year-old wondering what their purpose in life is? “
I don’t know what our purpose on earth is all about, but I do know that as long as I am able, I want to live with adventure. Not danger. I am not nuts. After 30 years on bikes I started running out of adventures, but there is way too much world to run out of adventures in sailing.”