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small but clean

Like a dumbass i bailed on surfing this morning. A semi-reliable spotter on the road tipped me off about the relative puny-ness of the conditions so i nestled under the covers for another hour of shut-eye. But now as i look at the cam and the buoys i wonder if i didn't make a grievous error and miss out on some leisurely but delicious morsels?? anybody have a good time out there this morning? It's strange to see it flat around here. It just doesn't happen very often. Take your 5 yr. old or your granny or you dog out for a spin on the longy today and pretend like it's east-coast summer or waikiki or some shit. With blakestah gone for a few days.. anyone looking at the maps want to make a weekend/early-next-week forecast? I know that a few of you are stormsurf.com junkies. Who's tracking the systems and wants to make a stab at it? anyone?

Soo.. when last i spoke of the hidden Isle of Barhedral Zaharzabo, i had just drifted off to sleep after paging through the book left to me by my grandfather. Thoughts of the Flower of Zibe drifted through my mind, along with visions of the coastline of northeastern africa and mathematical formulations of the golden mean, the spiral of life. Throughout my childhood i experienced fantastic, supernatural, emotionally-taxing dreams almost every night. For some reason this propensity for vivid dreaming became quelled during my adolescence and in the last 5 or 6 years my dreams would probably fall within the range of "normal". But.. as soon as i dozed off on the couch after reading my grandfather's leather-bound tome an intense, shockingly vibrant dreamscape filled my consciousness and reminded me of the heart-pounding nights of my childhood.

At first all i could sense was a thick, putrid miasma surrounding me. i seemed to be flying just above a fetid swampland, barely skimming the tops of trees and muck. The vegetation was ridiculously thick and i weaved in and around countless bush, tree and thicket. The sky was a forboding dark grey, with stormclouds rumbling and lightening flashing. Huge gaseous bubbles constantly welled up in the stagnant water below me. They would gurgle to the surface and then slowly tear themselves away from the film of slime and algea covering the surface of the swamp. The bubbles would rise out of the water and hover right below me, floating directly underneath me as i jettisoned through the air. As i looked into each i could barely discern a pattern or sheen on the surface of each. What, under normal circumstances would be an upside down reflection cast on the surface, now looked to be a distinct pattern of colors. Each bubble cast it's own rainbow of colored patterns on it's skin, floated below me for a few instances, and then drifted off into the ether. I attempted to take note of the ordering of colors but was distracted by the phantasmagoric world all around me. Gigantic bright-red teredactil-esque bats swooped in the air to my right, occasionally glancing at me with a set of three blazingly red eyes. I watched one of them triangulate its stare in this strange, cross-eyed formation and then emit a flash of brilliant lazer from the cross-section of gaze. I looked down to see what it was shooting at and saw this sickly, oozing blob of purple jelly wrythed fitfully on this football-field-sized lilly-pad. Random orifi of the gelatinous creature expunged remnants of animal it had killed/subsumed.. the teredactil-thing then swooped down and grabbed the jelly-creature in its talons and flew off into the distance. I looked in another direction and this mountainscape appeared before me with beautiful, sparkling crystal lattices refracting the sunlight in brilliant prisms. The longer i stared at the prisms wafting in the air the more i sensed that the pattern of their color somehow related to the pattern of colors i'd seen in the bubbles.. which were still hovering below me in succession. Just then a larger-than-normal bubble wafted up toward me and i looked onto it's surface.. this time the pattern of color was definitively imprinted onto my mind's eye. I then noticed a rotating form within the bubble itself. I couldn't quite make it out but it looked like a miniature beating heart. For some reason i decided to reach into the bubble. Just as i broke the membrane the small little heart morphed into a fanged mouth of doom and enlarged into this petrifying demon head, dominated by a snarling, dripping, chattering snout of teeth and fury.. Just then it opened wide and swallowed me whole.. then i woke up... but i still remembered that pattern of color.

Well i drove down south to heaven if you know what i mean if i had to do it over, then i wouldnt change a thing
whoa oh oh lord take me down to mexico, rosarito, baja california
goin to school and workin on the weekend
i finally saved enough to buy a car
got some bros down there all goin surfin
but you know that ill be chillin at the bar
two shots of tequilla my skin is turnin red
every thing is just beautiful til it popped in to my head
life is good and life is fun.....

it's friiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiday, go get yourself some this weekend. $5 for the first person to paddle out at OB naked and catch a few waves this weekend.

Posted by: j at June 18, 2004 10:52 AM

When in doubt...Punchy chest to head high next to Mt. Guano this a.m. Clean and speedy.

Posted by: kdalle at June 18, 2004 10:52 AM

I stared at it for an hour. First north, then somewhere in the middle, then south, then further south, even went around the big cliff to see about something there. Maybe it could have worked. Maybe I would have got waves. Maybe I had "too good" of waves this week to make the effort in the ankle to waist high rollers.

Either way, there were very few sights providing hope out there.

Seek another activity like posting pics!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Kaiser at June 18, 2004 10:57 AM

araghgh!! i knew it!!

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 10:59 AM

hello, i'm a monkfish reminding you all to drink beer, surf and have fun this weekend! oh, and please clean up after yourself/your dog when you leave the beach. thanks!

Posted by: badfish at June 18, 2004 11:02 AM

Ultra-inner-inside VFs. Paddled around in front of the chalet (sorry no-namers, but when it's this small who cares) and drifted north, plucking occasional nuglets out of the soup. Pretty clean. Riding the 7'2" pintail that works the rest of the year; not designed for chest-high pitchers - definitely made me want to expand the quiver with a fische. Poked my head into a nanotubule/mailbox sized cylinder once and heard that seashell noise; you know it's small and anemic when you can punch through the front of the barrel and come out the back unscathed.

Finished the Finnegan piece (again) before going to sleep last night and it brought the beach to life this a.m.: noticed the water tracing the seams of my suit when I first got in, paid attention for the first time in years to the seawall graffiti (some of that stuff is awesome - north of the chalet there are actually a few tile murals on the seawall).

Posted by: redworm at June 18, 2004 11:06 AM

yuck.
monkfish are gross.
i miss surfing.
work sucks.


was that a haiku?

Posted by: luke at June 18, 2004 11:06 AM

A usually thumpy spot in san mateo had regular waist to chest high peelers for the seven or eight of us who bothered to paddle out. Saw some nice leashless cross stepping on a big yellow tank.

Posted by: hrothbart at June 18, 2004 11:10 AM

not quite - six beats short. 3 to 5 is the master of haikux.

Posted by: redworm at June 18, 2004 11:10 AM

Although small and gutless, a good time non-the-less. Most outstanding moment: Being dropped in on by a seal. Freak'n locals.

Posted by: obsurfer at June 18, 2004 11:15 AM

looked kinda fun and kinda brown this morning. i think i will end my 3 week, ear infected hiatus this evening with a stony utility session and an extra silicone earplug.

Posted by: bagel at June 18, 2004 11:21 AM

kdalle -- that Finnegan article was totally inspiring. Thanks for getting it together. As I read it, I kept being reminded of those times when I've finally made it outside after 45 mins. and my first thought's "Now, how the f*ck do I get back in again?"

Amusing comments about derelicts and also about how each additional kid takes a foot off your max. wave height.......

Posted by: limevoodoo at June 18, 2004 11:22 AM

damn you, damn you all!! j/k! ; )

ahhh....looks like kdalle had the right attitude. i got up, drove the coast, but didn't see anything that tempted me out. don't know why. werk shiet needing to be done...feeling lazy...feeling uninspired, i suppose. now i'm wishing i had at least bobbed around in the micro-rollers for a little. sigh...

i did, however, have a very fine and memorable moment as i dropped into a tasty donut and a tall cup o' jo!

is it quittin' time yet?

Posted by: ck at June 18, 2004 11:24 AM

Get paid to surf.
My all time personal dream.
well...maybe in this case, get paid while surfing-which has to be the next bestest thing.
check it out-
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/3812357.stm

Posted by: at June 18, 2004 11:30 AM

summer solstice comming up!
Anyone doing anything for it?
Take the day off and do it right!
CK and any other MTBer's out there. tour De La Marin
on monday 100 MTB ride in marin (poach some of Marins finest single track!). Waves are supposed to be down that day anyway.

Posted by: V70T5 at June 18, 2004 11:42 AM

OB: EPIC WAVES. Forgot location, thought I was at the Jetty? Bring your grandma. Breeze threatening to start. Spotted some niceness peeps charging hard on those double knee high mackers! Seal too.

My computer still won't download that article...will trade 6 pack beer for printout or loaner? Cheers!

Posted by: s.s.sharkbait at June 18, 2004 11:49 AM

sounds like it will be a longboarding weekend. i'll bring an extra nug tonight and look out for you bagel. hope the higher tide cooperates ...

and hey, blackalicious is playing a free show at yerba buena on sat, check it:
http://www.ybae.org/concerts/june_afrobeat.htm

Posted by: loon at June 18, 2004 11:52 AM

somewhere up north

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 11:53 AM

schweet

will he pull it out?

pig-doggin'

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 11:56 AM

Thanks to those who put up the Finnegan piece. My original copies got lost during the last decade.
It really is the best writing thatís been done about surfing, as far as Iím concerned.

Strange to re-read it now, feeling a palpable sense of nostalgia. When that piece was first published, I was a sophomore in high school, surfing Ocean Beach before, after, and during classes. Going through the same soul-searching described in the article, trying to figure out where my limits were in terms of big OB, and what place surfing would play in my life.

The San Francisco described in Finneganís piece was still alive, back then. Surfing offshore outer bars completely alone. Docís little crew huddled at Taraval. I recall a January week where the beach was impossibly perfect and big. I was undergunned on a borrowed 8í0Ē; Pee Wee and I were the only ones to make the paddle. We surfed this giant left at Noriega, trading waves, the only ones on the beach, saying very little to each other.

Finnegan painted Doc Renneker with bold, exaggerated brush-strokes, but there is an underlying truth to his depiction. Doc loved to test people; see how far they would go in the name of surfing. I didnít know him that well, but I think he recognized that Iíd go pretty far, at least compared to the handful of other kids surfing big beach at that point.

I remember when my test came Ė I got a second-hand message from Doc, on Super Bowl Sunday, the year the Niners won for the last time.

The message went like this:

ďDoc told me to tell you heís going to this spot, ******. Itís gonna be huge. He told me to tell you to forget watching the game, cause the Niners will destroy the Chargers anyway. He said to drive to X place, go down X road, and look for his van. The key will be under the bumper. Your board will be too small, so Doc said you can borrow his spare 9í6Ē. Heíll be in the water already. Just grab the board, and your biggest leash. Jump off the rock at the base of the cliff and paddle for about 3/4 of a mile, past the island with all the seals on it. Docíll be surfing the right. You canít miss it.Ē

I didnít pass that test. Driving for hours to some spot that was more of a death-reef than a surf spot, almost a mile from shore, riding a Waimea gun for the first time, in 20í Hawaiian surf, in one of the sharkiest areas in the world, next to a buffet-style rock, alone... at 16 that seemed just a little past my limits. I watched the Niners game. Doc never invited me on another of his death missions. I surfed the beach as big as it got for the rest of high school, while Doc made the transition to the newly-revealed Maverickís. The spot that Doc wanted me to surf that day Ė itís still not really considered a surf spot. Just a death reef.

When I moved back to SF, I started surfing Mavís. Docís been out there almost every time Iíve surfed it. I remember him smiling slyly the first time I surfed there, after I got pitched on my first wave Ė a left, almost a decade after his invitation. A smile that seemed to say, ďWhat took you so long?Ē

Later, on the biggest day Iíve ever surfed at Mavís, as it started to break on the Tow Reef, it was just Doc, Pee Wee and I out there, as the sun went down. A straight west swell; the most dangerous conditions for Mavís. Doc cackling madly as we scrambled, looking at a purebred evil wave and stating, giddily, ďThat was a 25í Hawaiian wave! That wave could kill you!Ē

Posted by: lewis at June 18, 2004 11:56 AM

this morning at lindy

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 11:58 AM

ahhh..sorry for those who cant open the article- its on the front page of bbc- but it goes something a little like this-

"Surf the net while surfing waves
For a decade, "surfing" has come to mean browsing the net rather than riding ocean waves on a plank.
But a surfboard has now been developed that lets surfers surf while surfing. The prototype board has been built by Devon "shaper" Jools Matthews.

It houses a laptop, solar panels, and video camera, and is to launch at the Intel GoldCoast Oceanfest on 18 June.

The world's first wi-fi board uses a high-speed net connection point - hotspot - positioned on the beach...."


dont see why I wouldnt be able to somehow attatch a wacom to this apparatus and do some my work between sets...

Posted by: enb at June 18, 2004 12:00 PM

lewis...kick ass tale. though i started surfing too late (and am now far too aware of my mortality) to ever surf those sort of conditions, tales like yours take me there and, in my mind's eye, i'm scratching over the second wave of the set seeing the monster behind it. a sic sort of sweetness. (at least when sitting safely at my computer! ; )

v7ot5...mmm...poached single-track! my favorite! thanx for the invite. sounds interesting. i don't know the dets about the 100 mtb. where can i find out more?

Posted by: ck at June 18, 2004 12:06 PM

Hey there CK,
Go to gravy Wheels in Marin this weekend and ask for the laminate. It will have a bunch of trail names (this to this, to this....) but no map. You usually show up at 4:30 in the morining some where in marin (last year it was in Navato and we ended up in muir beach somewhere 22 hours later - dedjected) and just follow and find someone to budy up with.
Bring a lot of food and a light.

Posted by: V70T5 at June 18, 2004 12:15 PM

the new yorker piece is a must read for anyone curious about life in SF before the Dot Com outbreak/epidemic(decline of a western civilization?)Its nice to know someone else has the same ambivalence about surfing to realize its ultimate inevitablity. I cant imagine a greater waste of a life than to fail to comprehend a world beyond "the surfers path". That same narrowmindedness is responsible for so many other human endeavours resulting in at the very least our most pathetic attempts at civilization. To those of you who have had a taste of Santa Cruz or OB Localism, especially The Lane or Weasel Reef, you know of what i speak. Having just returned from service in the Middle East, i cant help but notice the striking fanatical stupidity "hardcore locals" here have in common with the idoits car bombing thier own people to justify thier cause. I sympathize with your thoughts the other morning E, with a world gone wrong some perspective is a welcoming thing and yours is invaluable. Just as compelling as any reason to live well balenced life free of all abolutes save one. Niceness

peace

Posted by: Finngans Wake at June 18, 2004 12:20 PM

Sharky- I can burn it to a CD for ya', if you like. Email me and tell me where to send it. BTW, where's our next "men making idiots out of themselves in front young women" story? Enquiring minds want to know.

I loved that Neew Yauker article. Read a little bit every night but wanted to savor it. Can any of you gray beards educate me about the pier that they refer to? I love a good "Mother Nature kicks ass on a human creation" story.

So if the small surf continues, do you suppose we'll start getting all those cranky posts resulting from Acute Surf Withdrawal?

Looks like I'm keeping my job and I'm interviewing for a promotion that pays about 30% more. Snowball's chance in Hell that I'll get it, but at least I won't end up drinking Woolite on the street corner like Gene Wilder. (If you've never seen Woody Allen's Everthing you wanted to know about sex, rent it. . . it's a hoot.)

HEY- THERE'S TODAY'S SURVEY! (If it's OK with E.) Favorite stupid summer comedies. Remember, nothing subtle- must include boobs and/or fart jokes. My choices:

Airplane (especially the disco scene)
Blazing Saddles (Mongo punching the horse)
Young Frankenstein (my ex bro in law built the sets)
Caddyshack (Hey, my di** is bigger than your boat!)
Anything else with Rodney Dangerfield in it.

Posted by: Bruce at June 18, 2004 12:24 PM

Lost this morning: one ocean. Steel-blue, frothy, answers to "hooooot!". Last seen: west of Great Highway.

Posted by: Klooless Kook at June 18, 2004 12:36 PM

Random late season headhigh swell hitting the northshore (oahu) today. Like so many other office dwellers, I didn't anticipate the arrival of this swell and am stuck in my cube for the day. Southshore is small to nil, with a small bump expected next Monday. It has been a feeble past month of surf... As usual the banter and vibe of e's site has kept me sane. Have a great weekend niceness!


Hope this brings a smile to you all

Posted by: Bagus at June 18, 2004 12:36 PM

Great post Lewis. (I still have not downloaded the article)

Keep 'em coming!

One question though, I knew of Doc prior to moving here from magazines and I thought of him as a surfing legend. In my 8 years surfing here, I always seem to hear at best compliments given to him with a "grain of salt"? And lot's of negativity. No one denies his courage and dedication but it seems that there is always some resentment?

Does this have to do with him being a tranny from LA? Or is it because of the media attention he has gotten? This was occurring prior to the "tow debate"

So what is the guy's legacy and the overall opinion? If negative is it justifiable?

Posted by: tom at June 18, 2004 12:50 PM

V7OT5...thanx for the skinny! sounds epic! don't know if i can swing Monday off, but you've got me schemin'!

Bruce....CONGRATS on the good news re work and good luck with the promo (as long as it doesn't cut into your surfin')! knock 'em dead!

Bagus...nice....so nice.

Posted by: ck at June 18, 2004 01:06 PM

awesome story lewis!

Posted by: bagel at June 18, 2004 01:24 PM


Yes I found my new winter OB gun!
An Inflatable surfboard

Posted by: Blowup at June 18, 2004 01:35 PM

Tom:
Mmmm. Few thoughts on the anti-Doc thing.

If you read the article, you'll see that Finnegan notes "a few dozen" surfers in SF. There's a few more than that now.

Right or wrong, people credit Doc's media presence with bringing the crowds. Maverick's and dotcom had a greater effect, in my mind. Things change. But more than a few people see Doc as self-promoting and ego-driven.

There's another thing, too. Have you ever seen Doc surf? He's not exactly kelly slater. The guy's 50+, and he's charging on days when guys with 4 times his talent and half his age are searching for excuses.

That's a bitter pill for a lot of good surfers to swallow -- Doc's bravado reveals their own cowardice. People don't like that.

Posted by: lewis at June 18, 2004 01:35 PM

FYI

ob was good today in the am

-out

Posted by: phil at June 18, 2004 01:41 PM

Hi E- is that shot labeled "schweet" from your most recent southerly (way) excursion? Beautiful peeler...

Posted by: steama at June 18, 2004 01:43 PM

Bruce-I haven't re-read the New Yorker piece since it was originally published so I can't recall the section about the pier. I'm gonna assume the pier referred to is the one south of Sloat that was erected around '80 for the purpose of laying the outflow pipe for the yet to be completed waste water treatment plant that is there now. It was removed after construction was completed. The metal pilings are still visible at low tide lined up across from the garage door to the plant. The pier made for a great sandbar buildup that resulted in some incredible lefts. It was locked and gated but one weekend on a huge day I climbed over the fence, ran out to the end, threw my gun over and and jumped. It was way higher than I expected and the impact was intense. The pier was long enough that I was outside the lineup. I was alone, caught one wave and got demolished by the rest of the set and was washed in. Only time I ever did it. I once got washed under the pier and thought I was gonna die.

As for Renneker's reputation. He's a bit of a braggard and a kook in the water. He started as a kneeboarder in Socal and moved to SF the same year I did in '76. Now, I surf probably 150-200 days a year in SF. In 28 years I have seen Doc in the water twice. The first time was with Ken Bradshaw on a very large day. The second time with Chris Isaak and neither of them could seem to catch a wave. At Mavericks he's been known to regularly drop in on others. That said, he is an adventurous spirit he just tends to promote his "legendary" status.

Posted by: kdalle at June 18, 2004 01:54 PM

Lewis: The doc thing aside, the thing about the guys that aren't all that talented and maybe not as young and strong is a really interesting point when it comes to the OB outer bar crew: ...

I remember the first time I saw a really big DOH+ day at OB Jan 1st 1990/91. BTW - I was watching, and shaking in my boots in awe at what I was seeing. I was standing at Sloat, there were about 10-15 people out (an equal number of guys watching). Anyway, the thing that struck me the most was the type of people I saw getting out of the water walking up the beach. There was one guy who was really tall and really skinny, then another guy who was pretty overweight and kind of short, then this huge square shaped guy. It dawned on me that these weren't these supremely cut uber-athletes, but instead they were all shapes and sizes with one common quality: Sheer gumption, and hutzpah.

Posted by: Jack at June 18, 2004 02:11 PM

rad story kdalle. you guys are nuts i went to my last 2 years of high school in the east bay like 88/89 and i remember meeting a guy my age that lived in san mateo and we were both so exited to see a person the same age surfing OB we exchanged numbers and surfed quite a bit together..things seemed alot friendlier and open back then. it was crazy driving the beach on these huuuge perfect days and seeing like 3 guys out along the whole stretch, probably lewis and kdalle and bvb (on my way to a sheltered more predictable location). must have been a crazy feeling back then being out there with no one else around.

i havent been able to download that article either i wanna read it..could somone type the whole thing and post it? ha

Posted by: bagel at June 18, 2004 02:15 PM

The minutes drag by.
Locked up in my cubicle.
Must go surfing NOW!

kdalle - you jumped off the end of the old construction pier? That's crazy!

Posted by: Jimmie at June 18, 2004 02:22 PM

Bruce and Kdalle -

I think the Artical is referring to the same pier of which Kdalle writes. I think there was also a pier to deal with outfall up near Lincoln at one time, but the artical is probably talking about the South End.

Lewis - I ask this given your age and what you just wrote. There was a OB surfer that I think was named Andy, worked at Wise, had a big red Fro, and went to Sacred Heart for at while at least. DO you know of whom I speak and if so, do you know what he is up to these days?

Posted by: Friend #1 at June 18, 2004 02:31 PM

Friend-I think I know the Andy you're talking about (from not so long ago--late-90's maybe). That guy was had a nice/goofy way about him and was always fun to see in the water. Don't know what he's up to these days, but he's in a movie called San Franpsycho that they sell at Wise--worth checking out.

Posted by: no one at June 18, 2004 02:49 PM

kdalle and lewis are legends!!

Friend #1 - that guy's name is Andy Olive. I don't know what happened to him but he used to rip it up. He was pretty chill too, even though he hung with all the "Kelly's Cove local boyz." I saw him airdrop into a huge barrel at a crowded left point break.. he then came out and bashed the lip super hard. He's got style. One time i was at this party with him and he had these two girls acting super flirty and touchy-feely.. He introduced me to them and one of the girls gave me this long, seductive hug and look-into-the-eyes. I think the ladies were on E and were looking to "get down".. Anyway.. i was hanging with Andy and the two of them but was actually at the party on a date. Andy asked if i wanted to go home with the three of them but I couldn't bail on my date (whom i actually never saw again).. soo.. i missed out on the frisky, e-trained ladies.. oh well..

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 02:51 PM

oh yeah, heard on the traffic report this morn' that there was a surfboard on the bay bridge this morn'....hope it was no one here's board, if so hope you got it back....

Posted by: j at June 18, 2004 02:56 PM

Bagus - two words about that photo

Deeeee eeaaammn!!!

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 02:58 PM

Andy's around still, I saw him a few times this winter in and around the beach. I never liked that "kellys" scene very much either, but since they were all my age and most went to high school with me I was semi-friends with them. Matt Lopez was another pretty good kid, acted like a punk though, don't know what happened to him either. This was definitely a younger set- we were all in high school in the mid to late 90s. I left the city for college and kind of dropped out of the sf surf scene, its cool now to hear (well, read i suppose is more accurate) about everyone's exploits- especially the older dudes. I fucking can't believe you jumped off the pier, kdalle. thats huge.

Posted by: luke at June 18, 2004 03:00 PM

oh yeah and andy used to pimp all kinds of trashy chicks from SH, mercy, ect. E's story rings so true...

Posted by: luke at June 18, 2004 03:02 PM

Cool OB stories. In the video Litmus, there is a shot of Tom Curren jumping off a pier somewhere. I think it might be the one in Ventura or Little Rincon. It's a pretty healthy jump too.

In my SoCal days we used to do this totally underground (i.e., illegal) "triathlon" right around Christmas time in Belmont Shores, a suburb of Long Beach modeled after Venice, called the ďRun, Jump, Swim.Ē The tri featured lots of running around in wetsuits, swimming in Venice-like channels, drinking beers in the local pubs in dripping wetties and jumping off all of the bridges in the area. The piece d'resistance was jumping off of the 2nd street bridge. Since the 2nd street bridge is designed to let large sailboats pass, letís just say that you had A LOT of time in the air to think about your landing. Some shoulders were slightly tweaked due to faulty landings. However, I do remember one of the crew doing a forward flip into a swan dive for a 2.5 degree of difficulty. Impressive. And the police got there just a bit too late to stop us from jumping.

Anyway, the water is frigginí freezing and there is a tiny, inconsistent south in the water.

Posted by: dano at June 18, 2004 03:04 PM

those kids are finished college now and are in to jobs so they are missing sessions from time to time or less visible.

they can't cut class anymore. the good news is that there is no new crew of young rippers taking there spot so there's a few extra waves to go around.

Posted by: at June 18, 2004 03:06 PM

When I get home tonight I'm going to download the article to my lappytop. Anyone who can't nab the article is welcome to email me with your address and I'll burn a cd for you. It's really too good to pass up. I promise, there's no SurfHumor mass-mailing list. . . kdalle is my witness.

Does anyone else find it interesting/motivating to read the stuff from Lewis, kdalle, and the other big wave weenies? Thanks for sharing your stories. I find them a bit depressing because I'm a big wave wimp, but inspiring none the less. Heck, the rest of us can dream.

My lame contribution: When I was a teen going to LaJolla High School my pals and I surfed the windy sea every day. Just south is a spot where the swell travels through deep water and slams in a shallow reef in front of a nasty rock. When it's big it breaks incredibly hollow and spits like Pipeline. The drop is so deep and late behind the reef it was a favorite of kneeboarders. Right tide and conditions it was still surfable on a regular board, but if you screwed up you found yourself receiving a skin de-breeding by muscles which covered the reef and rock.

So I'm out there with my grom pal and he misses the drop and gets the treatment. Paddles by me crying like a baby. His ring finger has been pulled out of the socket and is pointing 30 degrees in the wrong direction. Sounds cruel (I'm not) but something was so funny about his wailing and scrunched up face I had to laugh. Great friend, huh? He got to wear his splint at school and brag for a month, anyway.

I saw more than one guy get spit out of that tube in a cloud of mist. That has to be the most epic sight in surfing.

Posted by: Bruce at June 18, 2004 03:09 PM

yeah, I'm a bit older. I was living in La Jolla when that group came up. I know them, but I'm not part of their crew.

Remember that scene in The Lost Boys when Keifer Sutherland's band of punk teenage vampires descend out of the air and attack that party?

That's what the whole Kelly's Local Boyz younger crew is like. Anytime that stretch of beach turns on, they pop out of nowhere and wreak havoc.

I always get that report from my friend -- "yeah, it was fun at kell's but then the Lost Boys showed up so I paddled down the beach."

Posted by: lewis at June 18, 2004 03:10 PM

Glad he still rips. I used to talk to him at Wise and he was always on it with absolutely zero attitude in the water.

Breaking through locks to get onto the pier and heading out past the out of control line-up is almost iconic in the Surf experience. If it wasn't a scene in Big Wednesday, it should have been.

Finnagan's inclusion of that tale just shows his ability to capture a lifestyle in a moment.

Posted by: Friend #1 at June 18, 2004 03:16 PM

lewis--->My sweetie-pie and I watched Renneker paddle to that spot with one other person on that day. (Neither of us are football fans so it is a good day to go for a drive and site-see like tourists.) Don't know which one it was, but we watched on guy get annihilated and washed in. Not the greatest looking wave, but certainly powerful....kicked up lots of whitewater when it broke. Hard to imagine a shark less than 20 feet in the length bother with the food there on a day like that, but I'm sure there are at least some 30 foots out there lurking, hahaha.

Anyway, someone somewhere is likely planning towing in there some day, and when that happens, I'd like to see what comes of it.
Anyway, as far as big lefts go, I figure that spot is

Posted by: Mr Doof at June 18, 2004 03:17 PM

love the stories all! insane stuff, keep em coming!

Posted by: jdz at June 18, 2004 03:21 PM

that Kelly's crew is so gay. They all still act like they are 16 years old. Like it is really cool to yell "F*ck" and "Sh*t" at people in the lineup. what a joke. they dont even surf that great.

if you can surf halfway decently, and you dont give them waves that they paddle around you for, then you can surf kelly's just fine.

those kids get real humble when they dont have their whole crew around them. pretty classic stuff.

Posted by: jb at June 18, 2004 03:25 PM

Bruce.

Your waves are big.

Those guy's waves are just big-ER.

Posted by: tom at June 18, 2004 03:28 PM

mr doof -
how fucking weird is the internet? Tall tales confirmed with speed and accuracy.

I recall some random event from when I was 16 years old, and boom, someone pops out of the e-woodwork with a memory of the same day.
Classic.

Posted by: lewis at June 18, 2004 03:29 PM

NO KIDDING, JB

Posted by: Hi at June 18, 2004 03:31 PM

Pacific NorthWest is excellent! A heads up to all, Terry an SF surfer, (he drives around in a maroon VW van with a board on top always) Surfs like a spazz, he's going to be on "What not to wear" tonight at 10pm, there should be a little OB footage in there. The show is on the TLC network.

Stah, thanks with your forcasting help, we got some good shit.... peace

Posted by: mexisurf at June 18, 2004 03:32 PM

All this big wave talk is making me evaluate my quiver to make sure I am ready come October! Uh, 7'6'' maybe, uh 8'0'', 8'6''.... That eight foot mark creates a strange little butterfly sensation in my belly. Or maybe that is the after effects of the burrito I just slammed?

Bruce, bigger waves are all relative. You can get out there, you just gotta do it. Hell, its only the paddle you have to worry about. From as much as you see behind your lens, you know the break/water movement/etc. Besides, who says you gotta grab a wave. I claim there is no shame in getting out there and not catching anything. Besides, you are going to be in one of the most beautiful natural environments you can find. Threatening, yes! Sitting helplessly adrift between a couple of DOH peaks as you paddle to the horizon..... Ah, there is just something kinda holistic about it. Makes all the money/war/bombs/murders/worldly problems a bit more relative.

I love reading all these old skool SF takes on what went down around here. I can't wait to read that article this weekend.

Posted by: Kaiser at June 18, 2004 03:33 PM

localized cold-water sweetness

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 03:36 PM

Kaiser speaks da truth. I can't tell you how many times I was denied at Ocean Beach but sometimes it's a bigger high just making it out than actually riding the waves.

Kaiser- an 8'6" x 19 1/2" gun will change your life forever.

Posted by: kdalle at June 18, 2004 03:41 PM

lewis, remember when you peed in your trunks while checking the surf at playa grande?

Posted by: toad at June 18, 2004 03:41 PM

incredible stories today! y'all ever seen a 5 ft. tall girl make it out the back on a big day? well, maybe next year. or the next.
so...no one seems to want to play blakestah for the day. i wanna know if these south winds are gonna keep up through tomorrow. anyone have a clue? i got my eye on a spot up north that might bring in what little swell there is.

Posted by: steamwand at June 18, 2004 03:44 PM

"Besides, who says you gotta grab a wave. I claim there is no shame in getting out there and not catching anything." Hell fucking yeah, Kaiser, i am in full agreement. Many days i have endured 45 min. plus paddles just to cruise around the lineup, waiting for the one make-able (for me, riding a 7'6") wave that will make it all worthwhile. SOmetimes, it doesn't come, but i always feel like i have had an epic experience just being out there, maybe watching Christian or some other charger go big. Big OB is an experience like nothing else in life, and frankyl for me its not even about the waves i ride, its about facing my fears and surviving.

Posted by: luke at June 18, 2004 03:45 PM

is this where slater surfs in that one scene in Thicker than Water?

Posted by: e at June 18, 2004 03:45 PM

8'6'' huh? That kinda scares me a bit. I think an 8'0'' is my limit right now but maybe that is just me lying to myself. Figure if I can't make it in on that, I don't want to make it in!

Then again, the more lumber the better I guess.

Kdalle, how big a board do you ride on bigger days (Gotta push DOH or more to be called "bigger")?

Posted by: Kaiser at June 18, 2004 03:57 PM

toad:
I do remember the time I peed myself when we were checking playa grande!

That was rad.

Posted by: lewis at June 18, 2004 03:59 PM

i pee myself every time i surf. although when i get a new suit i try to hold out for a few months.

once the first one get's let looses then it's just a pee fest from then on out.

i never shat my suit though. i had ass pucker from fear but never shat.

Posted by: tom at June 18, 2004 04:03 PM

perhaps one of the funniest moments in my life-the fact that you never even came close to smiling made it all the more amazing.

Posted by: toad at June 18, 2004 04:08 PM

Rennekers "accomplishments" ought to be kept into perspective by those few that have know the area before and after the "era of change" that was brought about by the Dot Coms so as to keep informed those recent arrivals views as to the reality of the present state our little subculture. Growing up in the north bay thru the 80's an surfing the local known coast my friends and watched our "sport" grow from total obscurity into its current mainstream incarnation. Lucky as we were to have what most now consider to "coveted" secret mysto reef breaks all to ourselves we to us just local spots with theoccasional friendly faces from other local high schools. So it was with amusing interest for us country bumpkins to be graced with the presence of "Dork" Hazzard one fine morning at a favourite little cove on the sonoma coast that once upon a time actually was a "Secret". With no regard to his "reputation", he just looked like another ecentric north coast dope grower that would emerge from the forest to drop in on anyone for an hour or two and then dissappear back into the redwood groves. Everyone has experiences in thier youths they can recall with vivid clarity and none seem stand out clearer than watching an adult behave with uttely selfishness, there again is that magic of acting in your own self interest, localism at its finest. Which by the way was our first encouter with it.As it turns out, with a daft codger wo didnt even live nearby. Must of been "making the spot his own" that day. So after finishing school and moving off into the world for several years it was with a chilling irony to come home i crossed paths with that "ponytailed guy" . Granted the Bay Area and SF are filled numerous unique individuals, but to ponder the that-was-then-this is now instantaneous was almost surreal. It brought to mind something one of my childhood friends who moved to alaska mentioned to me when i asked him about why he liked riding big waves. "You dont have to be a really good surfer to ride big waves, but it helps to be kinda dumb" As you might imagine, it took a moment for the wisdom of that insight to present itself.

Posted by: Finnegans Wake at June 18, 2004 04:10 PM

nice picture of Salt Point State Park E. Probably the first ive seen with no one in it or on it. And look! Clean water too! Almost a cold water Indo, but thats in Ireland.

Geez whats all this about old school OB? Cant we live in the present? Keep it real and keep it niceness!

Posted by: flavor at June 18, 2004 04:20 PM

You guyz are too cool. I love it a few feet overhead, but really big? I hate, hate, hate long hold downs even when I know I'll probably live. And I employ a conservative approach. If I can't take the biggest set of the day on the head and be OK, then I shouldn't be out there displacing water and clogging up the line up for guys who can.

Stolen story from my pal Vern in SC. He's surfing Middle Peak on a really big day and a sneaker set rolls through. He's paddling like a duck on speed to make it over and sees this fishing boat running sorta' parallel to the break and too far inside.

Just as Vern starts to penetrate this DOH+ Mackosoris, the boat gets sucked over the lip and goes over the falls just missing him. Lifeguards, ambulances, paramedics, rescue craft, debris all over the place. Must have been one hell of a show.

Sounds like a fish story, but this guy has been surfing there for 30 years and is friends with most of the Mav's crew. Cool guy, but he's one of the few I know who will get in Skindog's face and read him the riot act for a drop in. No fear.

Posted by: Bruce at June 18, 2004 04:21 PM

What a great reading day on e's blog!

The pier business reminded me of my quickly-quashed musing that maybe someone should install a chairlift over OB.

You all probably know this Jack London piece, but anyway, have a great weekend.

Posted by: Klooless Kook at June 18, 2004 04:22 PM

Yeah, what the hell is it with surfing? I get out there and I have to pee like I just chugged a keg... like all the time. I think that there is some sort of mini reverse-osmosis desalination plant in my wettie actively pumping ocean water into by kidneys.

Kaiser, I say just go big. Those 6" could be the difference. Besides, you gonna duck dive an 8' anyway? I'll watch this year from the second lot and cheer you on. I keep my boards under 7' just so I have an excuse not to go out. Besides, I like fuzzy blankets.

Posted by: dano at June 18, 2004 04:22 PM

How many surfers have gone left at Mav's? At one point there was only Clark who had done it. Still I think it may be less than 10 total.


Posted by: goofy foot at June 18, 2004 04:32 PM

Hope this hasn't been posted before, but:

Get ready for the debut release on July 16 of a great surf film documentary, RIDING GIANTS, from filmmaker & skateboarding legend, Stacy Peralta, the director of "Dogtown and Z-Boys."
..........................................
SF BAY AREA RELEASE DATE: JULY 16, 2004
..........................................

o PALO ALTO: Cinearts - Palo Alto Square
o SAN FRANCISCO: Embarcadero Center Cinema 5
o BERKELEY: Shattuck 8

Official Site

Posted by: dano at June 18, 2004 04:36 PM

Kaiser-don't use my choice of board as a guide. I've got a different take on surfing than I did 10 years ago. These days I'm the Owl Chapman of SF. I'm 5'7" and I ride a 9-8" oldstyle gunlog in everything from 2' on up. When I think its pretty serious out there I use a 10' rhino chaser. All I know is that my quiver ranged 6-4 to 7-4 for years. I spotted a used 8-6 Twinzer (my board of choice) at Wise and bought it. The first time I had it out in overhead surf I couldn't believe the difference. Paddling had tradeoffs. Easier to cover distance but no way to duck dive. But in the lineup I could sit a little farther out in the safe zone and catch bigger waves with ease. Unless you're a total ripper like this is the way to go.

Posted by: kdalle at June 18, 2004 04:47 PM

Ahh, so fun out there. Today was the day you could have taught your friend to surf at OB. Perfect after not having surfed for a month. Pelicans cruising, seals, the whole bit.

Posted by: welle at June 18, 2004 04:57 PM

beer to justin: "i bet you 12 oz. you can't pop this cap off my head and drink me in under 2 minutes"

justin to beer: "you're on bitch!!!"

*reaches in pocket for can opener*

Posted by: j at June 18, 2004 05:08 PM

so your saying its not completely blown out right now? anyone?

Posted by: bagel at June 18, 2004 05:25 PM

She says winds are light. Want a shot?

Posted by: Kaiser at June 18, 2004 05:31 PM

ok!

Posted by: bagel at June 18, 2004 05:36 PM

All the talk about big waves. I was thinking about it this morning. It's time to start the extra activity to get ready for the fall. It seems we get at least one big day in mid Sept.

Being a 50+'er myself, this will probably be 'one' of my last years paddling out in DOH+ OB. I really want to get my lungs and arms ready. Confidence as well as ability is greatly enhanced by conditioning. With the right equipment (big enough gun and brass), the right attitude and physical conditioning, you can take off on those big bad ground swells and whatever comes with it. Once you get to your feet and down the face of the wave it's not that much different from 3' overhead-except your moving a lot faster and straighter down the line.

What always freaked me out was getting out. I'd be breathing so hard after making it through the inside that seeing a big monster walling up in front of me scared the crap out of me.

Bail or hold on? If I bail, the wave won't drag me so far in but I like to have something in my hands that floats-just in case. I never had a leash break actually. If I hang on, I'll get pushed back inside and have to paddle out all over again-or give up. Two seconds to make the decision.

This is when it's really nice to have that extra high level of conditioning. More air in the lungs to work with during the paddle out. A few extra strokes in the arms to get through the inside faster.

On days when I was less freaked out getting out, I felt more confident making the drop. That's the hard part of bigger waves for me. Twenty minute breaks between sets always helps too.

Posted by: Dennis at June 18, 2004 05:42 PM

Dennis you just described exactly how I feel when it's, like, 6 feet. haha...In total agreement with Luke's philosophy - for me it's about loving being in the water and also [ reasonably! ] facing fears and surviving. Fun...

This big wave talk is so interesting, I grew up around old-school mountain climbers and there are so many parallels between them and surfers. The guy who traversed Everest or the guy who made first ascents over 8000 meters often will look like Professor Beetle Collector. It's all about loving what you're doing, and chutzpah. When that mentality is combined with somebody who's incredibly fit, then behold a MIND BLOWING outdoor athlete.

Happy Friday,

Posted by: s.s. sharkbait at June 18, 2004 05:54 PM

"What always freaked me out was getting out. I'd be breathing so hard after making it through the inside that seeing a big monster walling up in front of me scared the crap out of me.

Bail or hold on? If I bail, the wave won't drag me so far in but I like to have something in my hands that floats-just in case. I never had a leash break actually. If I hang on, I'll get pushed back inside and have to paddle out all over again-or give up. Two seconds to make the decision."

WORD!!!

Posted by: j at June 18, 2004 05:57 PM

Sharkbait, I've felt that way in 6' surf too. Especially when I first surfed here after growing up on the right coast (as opposed to the left coast). 6'ers can have some punch to them.

Posted by: Dennis at June 18, 2004 06:26 PM

paddled out west of the park at 6:30pm on my 9'0" .......stayed out until 8:45...great vibes,sunset, bonfires on the beach, cute betty on the Stewart trading wave with me, friday chill going on, no wind clean shape 9only 4' at best)...topped it off with a dark stout at the beach chalet......bitchin friday

Posted by: old man at June 18, 2004 11:38 PM

It's Saturday at 6:00 am. Get outta' bed and shake off that hangover, niceness peeps. OB looks clean on the cams.

Posted by: Bruce at June 19, 2004 06:06 AM

It's Saturday at 6:00 am. Get outta' bed and shake off that hangover, niceness peeps. OB looks clean on the cams.

Posted by: Bruce at June 19, 2004 06:07 AM

6:15 update from my pal Rich who's been up since three (he just got back from the east coast). Flat, small, essentially unsurfable at the zoo.

No excuses. . . mow that yard and wash that car!

Maybe something around Devil's Slide? That's where I'm headed.

Posted by: Bruce at June 19, 2004 06:40 AM

Rich is right. I wouldn't kill yourself to get to OB this morning, though it's not QUITE entirely unsurfable; mid-beach there are little licks to ride for a second or two.

Posted by: Klooless Kook at June 19, 2004 08:31 AM

Montara folks, Monfrickingtara. My first time there and it was off the fishhook. Now its off the north beach festival to soak it all in.

Posted by: Flavor at June 19, 2004 03:26 PM

Hey Flavor, I surfed south of the slide as well and had a good time. Always fun when everything else is flat.

Posted by: Bruce at June 19, 2004 06:54 PM

Hey Bruce your right about "Southie M's" Very happening indeed though i must correct myself. Bathing in the afterglow of that morning session i was informed by my more wiser crew we were technically at Grey whale Cove (even though the town is montara) It took me a few to figure out why after every 100 yard ride my bros and sis would yell "Noodles!" Turns out that Grey whale cove is also Nude Beach. Now thats one session im glad i didnt see a backside attack.

Posted by: Flavor at June 20, 2004 05:23 PM

What a fucking Kook. Get the hell out of here bitch.

Posted by: at June 21, 2004 07:54 AM

Flavor...while i dig your pos stoke...i (and i'm sure most others here) would appreciate it if, in the future, you could please avoid references to particular breaks...or at least keep references ambiguous. let other heads explore and discover on their own. thanks.

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