Yesterday afternoon the wind mellowed.
I skated down to the beach with my girl to check it.
It looked small, mellow, mushy, doable.
She told me to go for it.
We’d planned to play badminton after we jammed.
Chose to hang with my rad chick and bandminton it up instead of surf.
The ‘minton is fun as hell.
Played at a school with pavement so smooth like skating on ice.
Now Eddie Harris funk-jazz coursing through cranium.
Heard there was smooth longboard waves this AM.
Good on ya for hitting it.
Beastie Boys at the Warfiend next month.
Hopefully they’ll jam out the instrumental grooves.
Dang.. the Kauai cool-guy takes out my other least-favorite pro Damo in the final.
Oh well.. Kelly, Fanning, Parko, Bobby Martinez or Cory Lopez can’t win them all.
What’s up with no Brazzos in the top 20?
They seem to dominate the WQS.
But when was the last time a Brazilian won a WCT?
They represent almost 1/4 of surfers on tour.
Raoni Monteiro is the highest rated Brazilian at #24.
It’s really weird.
A good friend of mine just returned from a month in Costa Rica.
Each year for the last 4 or 5 years he’s been spending time at
a secluded, idyllic point break down there.
The absence of guest-houses in this zone keeps the throngs away.
But this year witnessed an uptick in the numbers of surfers.
He says boats started cruising in from a hugely popular nearby spot.
He also lamented a camping party of 15 Argentinians who came in and took over.
Gotta go further and further these days to find the uncrowded tropical surfing dreamland.
Or just don the wetter and find some local crevasses..
Speaking of which… same friend drove to the city from Santa Cruz yesterday and watched
glassy, tasty waves peel along at an undisclosed location.
A few wily surfers sniffed it out and rode chilled-out evening rollers with nare a soul about.
It’s out there… not too far.
Summer doldrums corrode effusive surf excitement.
Again it’s time for love-making, music-making, work-making, skate-shredding, etc.
This summer marks the moment at which i’ve been surfing half my life.
Began at age 16 at the Jersey shore.
boogied before that but acquired my friend’s old 6′2″ Bradshaw that summer.
Remember my first good down-the-line right.
Probably only chest deep.
Hoping my friends saw it but don’t think they did.
Got immediately addicted to the sensation of travelling along the unbroken face.
yup rza i dig on Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra and also Orchestra Baobob. Love Fela Kuti
the best of the afrobeaters though.. obviously i guess.
If you dig on Miles Davis electric period:
On the Corner
Theme from Jack Johnson
You might enjoy a band called Banyan… who i take it is playing in Santa Cruz
later this month.. bummer is that their original guitarist Nels Cline (one of my alltime faves)
can’t make the show so Steve Kimock will be replacing him. Won’t be the same without the
good-vibed shredulocity of Cline.. but the grumpy/bad-vibed Kimock can lay down the smooth,
melancholic jams no doubt.
Word on the interweb is that Slates is done.
He lost a nailbiter to Dean Morrison in the quarters.
He then came in and announced unofficially that it would
be his last heat.
May have been frustration?
I hope slates hangs in ther for a few more world titles..
or at least until Andy is past his prime and has no more chance.
Arica looks rad.
Behind UCSF there exists a swath of forest impenetrable to humans.
A wild, wooded place smack in the middle of the teeming megalopolis.
Eucalyptus sway and offer fragrant scents.
Green-eyed gremlin snark and cat-call from the depths of shadow.
Surf this morning was bad. Doable but bad.
Places i want to travel before the end of my surfing days:
Remote South Pacific Island(s).
- Colorful, living reef.
- Gorgeous, azure water.
- The birthplace of surf.
- Freight-train reef-pass sickness.
- Tropical nirvana
- Would love to island hop north of Tofino.
- Cold, glassy, well-shaped.
- Hot women.
- Radical mountains, rugged hiking/camping options.
- Would love to do the drive from Capetown to Durban.
- Heeps of legendary lineups.
- African cultural in-your-facedness.
- Would love to spend 3 months cruising North-West Africa.
- Incredibable music.
- Unreal architectural beauty.
- sick sick sick waves.
- Less touched remoteness in Western Sahaha.
- Adventure travel opportunities.
- my girl is from there.
- Indian Ocean coast.
- Hardly ever surfed.
- Could be epic.
- Probably will be flat.
- Might be going there for Jerm’s wedding.
- Have seen legit photos.
- Beautiful coastline.
- Typhoon reality?
- Gotta hit up the sickness of lower Mainland mex some day.
- World-class warm water waves. Close to home. Tough to beat.
- Tough to find the less crowded gems?
Bachelor party weekend.
South of the border.
No swell predicted.
Fly down Friday.
Meet up with folks.
Cross the border.
Into the third world.
Biggest cross-border socio-economic differential?
Giant border fence.
Mexican wrestling masks for sale.
Beautiful squalor running up the dry mountain valleys.
Tijiuana… city of the future.
South of town, sun beating down.
Giant Jesus with a bloody heart.
Dusty, half-finished buildings.
Supposedly half-finished for some tax loophole purpose?
Get to the spot.
But pretty sweet.
About 70 houses in a fenced community.
Reef break out front… plenty of smooth glassy peaks.
Waves about 2 foot.
College friends getting toasted by 3pm friday.
Massive amounts of beer consumed.
Crazy beach scene.
Loads of bikini action.
Literally squadrons of scantily clad So-Cal ladies.
Long lazy solo glassy longboard sessions.
Hunt down the soft rollers.
Stand up and glide.
Glassy reefy safety beauty.
20 or 30 mini-waves a session.
Liberian war-torn jungle points.
Kids screaming, babies crying, people smiling.
Cold, dismal, small Nor-cal beachbreak.
Summer-weary onshore bite.
43 yr. old dad out there on his funboard.
Solo session while the mom watches the kids.
He doesn’t care.
Two kids, a third on the way.
Wife has the whole fam on lock down.
Karate, Ballet, baseball, dinner with the inlaws, she has class, etc.
Gotta get to work, take the kids to day-care,
walk the dog, fix the sink, get garbage bags, look into
bank issue, take the car to mechanic, blah blah blah..
Haven’t surfed in months.
Life responsibilities becoming overwhelming.
Wife is frazzled.
Kids are brats.
Dog poops in the house.
Boss is an asshole.
Knee is giving problems.
But this morning the wife comes through in the clutch and tells him to go surf.
“Baby, go for a surf, i’ll watch the kids, you need it!”
So he grabs his tattered wetsuit and his dinged funboard.
Drives out to the beach.
Looks at the grumpy, ugly, onshore crap and smiles delightedly.
He really and truly doesn’t give two shits what the conditions look like.
A bum pisses on the sea-wall.
Grey, cold and dispirited.
But he’s out there.
Barely any duckdives necessary.
First wave he pearls horribly.
But it’s invigorating and refreshing.
Second wave he gets up and rides down the line for a second.
A quick right.
Everything washes away and he feels 16 again.
Just riding waves.
Blustery cauldrons of frigidity.
Gulls squawk hungry cries for deliverance.
Manic squalls wash over ships in the night.
A rat scurries from trash bin to trash bin.
Nose furrowed, eyes piercing… claws scratching.
The Witchdoctor saunters out of the trees, onto the beach.
Carrying his mystic scythe.
A subtle blue light eminating from its orb.
Wrapped in his finely-wraught robe.
Two street-urchin youngsters gaze at him from their raucous bonfire.
Home-spun face-tattoos barely hide frightened looks of dispair.
They yell, “Hey freak! Got money for beer?!”
The Witchdoctor slowly lets his gaze settle on them.
He brushes his long white hair from his forhead to reveal a third eye.
With this eye he stares at the two youngsters.
They’re hypnotized for a few seconds as the message sinks in.
Then the trance is broken and the Witchdoctor moves on.
The youths heckle him no more.
Onward down the beach he walks.
A foghorn bellows in the distance.
Portugese ledging rock reef.
Thick, pitching lips over bubbling boils.
Ancient Basque villages.
Surf the pocket-beach wedge in the morning.
Jai Alai in the evening.
Deep Columbia jungle post.
Rare sparkling jewels.
hidden warm-water points.
Muy guapa bonitas.
No surf camps.. no gringos.
Poverty, dengue, malaria, dust.
A primeval volcano looms overhead.
Howler monkeys shout their guttural yell.
A few hidden stretches offer opportunity to the itinerant wave wanderer.
The Garden Isle broods over Niihau.
Womb to many a fine surfer.
The media shies from mentioning its goods.
Unreal, land-of-giants mountains erupt from God-shaped coves.
Puff the magic dragon.
Another place at another time.
Cliffs erupt from a cold ocean.
Blue skies shine down on deep green pine trees.
Hills undulate through mists interspersed.
Sea lions bark but otherwise quiet pervades…
except the sound of empty waves.
Peeling here and again over unpopulated points.
5 or 6 points in a row.
Two guys take a chance and make the drive.
Suit up for the heck of it and end up scoring.
Watching waves approach.
Warm evening had me dreaming of tropical perfection.
Green, lush, South Pacific volcanic mountains.
Cascading waterfalls with beautiful island girls soaking in
the crystal clear water.
Trade winds blowing languidly.
Palm fronds wafting.
Colorful birds chirping strange, exotic chirps.
Turquoise ocean water.
A vibrant coral reef.
Waves cracking and peeling.
baby-butt smooth almond barrels.
Then i woke up this morning.
It actually felt pretty warm in my little yard.
Maybe i’ll wear the 4/3 with no hood.
N’ah.. heard the water was still chilly.
Don the 5/4 with hood even though it’s warm and sunny.
Scamper down to the local.
Constant wind-swell lines.
89 duckdives to get out.
Finally get out.
Water is effing freezing!
Snatch a right.
A few pumps.
Another right funnels in.
Drop in, pump.. roundhouse-ish turn. a few more pumps.
Get caught inside SO bad.
20 thick barrelling waves directly on the head.
Sandy chocolate water in most every orifice.
Finally make it back.
Of course no more waves come through.
Sitting and waiting.
Total OB solitude.
Bright morning sunshine to the east.
Can’t even see if i’m drifting… too bright.
Catch another fun right.
See three dudes paddling out.
Think i recognize one of them..
Oh yeah.. it’s Robme, Jerm and Gary!
Surf for 40 minutes with those heads.
Jerm catches a solid right.
Conditions deteriorate quickly.
Not sure what happened? Wind? Tide?
It got real funky/washy/shitty.
Kinda bigger too.
Big mounds loping in.
Not breaking… not breaking… not breaking… then pile-driving/suckout death pits.
Had a few nice wipeouts.
A few fun air-droppy takeoffs.
Finally a ledging right came to me.
Took off kinda deep..
speed-raced the section.