John John Florence
Photo by Justin Jay/@justinjayphoto | Photo: Justin Jay/@justinjayphoto

Candid: John John Florence’s Reddit AMA

Sometimes the best interviews are the dumbest… 

I’m always kind of annoyed when I see an online article titled “X things we learned from so-and-so’s Reddit AMA.” So lazy, literally just scraping content to steal page views.  Shameful, really.

But guess what, suckas?

I’m about to do the same thing!  Our fave tow-headed super freak John John Florence did an AMA today and my creativity tank is running on empty at the mo’, so I’m gonna call it “curation” and hop on the bandwagon.

The hypocrisy is so thick I can taste it.

/u/HockeyCannon: What do you think of your father writing a memoir?

I don’t know if I like it very much so I don’t think about it, haha.

/u/BlasphemousFish: Do surf groupies exist?

Surf groupies? I believe they do exist. I’ve seen some before. Haha, one or two.


/u/KangCradJamin: What’s the most common misconception of surfing? Or being a professional surfer.


Most common misconception…hmm…I don’t know, it’s probably that picture you see in your head of that guy with long hair down at the beach smokin’ weed, haha. I guess that would be it.

In reality it’s pretty professional, like in the contest stuff guys really train hard. I don’t train very hard, but other guys do, ha ha.


/u/KangCradJamin: Follow up question, totally unrelated. do you smoke weed

I don’t smoke weed.

/u/HayEwe:  What’s your best surfing story?

My scariest one was when me and my friends surfed this big outer reef wave, and it was just us two, and we didn’t really know how big it was, because it was really far how there. We had the new blow-up vests and all that stuff. And so we paddled out, and we were like sitting there and I was like, “I think we’re in the spot right now.” And we paddled over a smaller wave, it then there was like maybe a 20 foot wave breaking behind it. I was just looking at it like, “We’re not in the spot right now!” It landed on us, and I was underwater for a while and I was trying to stay calm. Finally I was like, “Okay, I’ve gotta go up.” So I pulled my vest, and it blew up, and I slowly started going up. And then right as we got to the surface, another wave hit me and I just went straight back down. I was just like, “Oh no, this is really scary.” And then I was kind of getting rolled with the wave, because my vest was blown up. Yeah, it was just a long time underwater. Two waves. Really kind of scary moment, because we had no water safety or anything.

One of the best moments? Probably at the same wave, like a year later. It was just me and my friends. We were on jet skis, and we do step-offs off the jet skis. We’d go in pairs, my friend was driving and then I’d just step off the side of the jet ski and get these huge waves on little tiny boards. We surfed it for like 6 hours that day. Me and like five of my friends, and we were just taking turns getting the biggest, best waves of our lives. And just screaming the whole time. So yeah, that was cool.

/u/kfinnegan15:  Where was your favorite spot to film for the movie? [A Blue Moon]

My favorite spot to film for the movie was probably South Africa. That place was just one of my favorite places in general, and to be able to go and film with the equipment we had was kind of something I had dreamed about for a while because I had been there a lot. So I was like, wow, if we could capture this, and something amazing… it would be really cool.

It’s just very vast. You’re in the middle of nowhere and everywhere you look pretty much you’re like, wow… that’s crazy. Yeah, vast would be the word.

The first trip we had like 20 people with us which was a huge crew. It was the biggest crew of the whole movie and then after that we slimmed it down to what we needed. That one just kind of had everything thrown at it and it made it so it didn’t work so well. Then we lessened up the crew for the next trip and it made everything go more streamlined and better.

/u/TuskenCam:  What is the best meal to tuck into after a big day on the water?

My favorite meal to eat after surfing all day is pasta. I love pasta! And it makes me really full, and I sleep really good after eating pasta.

/u/JaredsFatPants:  I’m a total kook that lives on the north shore. Wanna surf inside Pua’ena with me sometime?

Sure, maybe! Haha

/u/bhotep: What’s your favorite non-surfing film? And why is it still Point Break?

So it can be any movie? My favorite non-surfing film would probably be Interstellar. A great movie, I’ve watched it probably five or six times. And another movie would be Rush, it’s about Formula 1 drivers, don’t know if you guys have seen that — it’s one of my favorite movies as well.

Point Break is not one my favorite movies, haha. But it’s a cool movie – I’m excited to see the next one!

/u/CheddarCheesasaurus:  whos your favorite shaper? How important is it to understand how to pick out the best board for my surfing/body type?

My shaper I have now, Jon Pyzel. He’s from Hawaii and lives down the street from me, and he’s shaped my board pretty much my whole life.

As for picking a board – it’s a personal preference kind of thing. There’s so many things that go into a surf board — the waves that you’re riding, and, like you said, the size of a human you are… I don’t think about the boards too much, to be honest! I just get boards and tell them how I want to change it and they change it to that, but it’s hard for me to explain how to tell someone what kind of board to ride, it’s such a personal thing.

The changes I ask for vary from big waves boards to small wave boards, all the boards are so different for such different kinds of waves: changing the shape of the tail, changing the concave in the bottom of the board, how much lift you’re getting out of it, how fast the board goes down the line…

When you add things, like, “Okay, I want my board to go really fast across flat sections,” then it’s going to make the board stiffer. So you lose things when you add things, and it’s kind of finding the happy medium. You’re really happy when you finally find a good board for certain kinds of waves!

Small waves are the hardest, but when you find a good small wave board if feels amazing, and I won’t ride it until I have a heat because I’ll just end up breaking it. My boards last probably two weeks, haha. Yeah, they don’t last very long. The other winter I broke 38 boards. I surf a lot, and the waves we surf in Hawaii like to break your boards.

/u/Joplinger:  What’s your pre-contest routine?

My pre-contest routine? I’ve been working on it more and more lately. I kind of started doing more warm ups just to get my body moving. Jump roping and stuff like that, but I would say I pick 2 or 3 songs before each event that I like at that time and just listen to them on repeat and it helps keep my mind off the surfing and the heat and over-thinking it and think about the songs more.

I think I was listening to Eazy-E songs at the last event, but I’m not like a full rap person. My base in music is Pink Floyd and Talking Heads and Sabbath and Zeppelin and all those bands, but Eazy-E was a good one for the last event.

/u/Mister-Duke:  What is the lineup at Pipe and other heavy breaks like? How do you determine the pecking order with so many great surfers in the lineup?

The line up at Pipe… there’s not really any lineup like that in the world because of the amount of people that are out there and the fact of how scary the wave is in itself.

Pipe has a pretty solid pecking order, like you know who’s up next and a lot of people don’t like it, but in a way it kind of needs to be organized like that because if they don’t, people are going to get hurt, people are going to be dropping in on other people. It’s not really a wave you can just go in front of someone on, you know, you could end up really hurting someone and possibly killing someone.

/u/lambkeeper:  Who do you think is going to win the WSL tour?  And do you ever do night surfing?

Hmm, it’s pretty hard to say right now coming into the last contest, but I would say…it looks like Mick Fanning, most likely.

Yes! I do do night surfing. We did it actually this summer and it was a full moon and we surfed in front of my house for like 3 hours. It was really cool.

It was one of the times I’ve had that sharky feeling, ha. At first it’s pretty dark, or well, it’s bright but it’s kinda hard to see and then your eyes adjust and it’s surreal.

With the white moonlight on the sand and then the water, it’s just so crazy the way the water reflects. It looks like a fluorescent light or something and it’s definitely a really cool experience.

He’s still answering questions as I type this (not mine, though), head on over to check it out for yourself.  As for me, I feel dirty, I’m gonna go take a long shower, the length of which has absolutely nothing to do with the photos I just saw which are purportedly of Anastasia Ashley’s vagina.

Adriano De Souza claim

Adriano De Souza will win Pipe (and title)!

ADS will be Brazil's second surfing world champion and first-ever Pipe Master!

Is there anything better than the title coming down to Pipe? Such a singular wave, so close to shore, all that power slamming into the inside bowl.

The greatest show on Earth. Really.

Not so much fun if you live on the North Shore. Constant gridlock during the waiting period. Basically the reason I ruined my shoulder. Hopped the bus to the beachpark with a pair of flippers on a lay day, got humbled real bad by a slightly overhead wave. No car, no phone, my wife had to drive out from Bishop Street to get me to the ER. Might make for a solidly frivolous suit, should the WSL fail to learn the meaning of fair use and we need some future leverage.

Pipe’s got a lot to look forward to. Always the local drama, never enough wildcards. The contest only exists in its current form because of a series of variances the Parks Dept has no right issuing. Bunch of people pretty upset with that.

Last year’s application claimed the Triple Crown, of which  Pipe is a part, provides a billion dollars, with a b, worth of exposure for Hawaii. It must be nice to just make shit up and have it taken as truth.  Who am I kidding, I know it is. I do it myself, occasionally.

Derek sent me the world title race breakdown (scroll to bottom), which I assume is true. It’s not that I can’t do the math, it’s that I’m too lazy. And in the grand scheme of things, it’s not like it matters.


Smart money’s on Mick, he’s been here before. But my heart goes out to sweet Adriano. Love to hate him, but no one works harder.

I just realized, I’ve never seen ADS free surf. That’s crazy.

I adore an underdog, and so de Souza’s my boy, and here’s how I see it playing out…

A series of unreal semi early season swells blow the sand off the reef, epic sessions go down as the circus trickles into town. Lei Lei’s sees our sport’s best and brightest dining on overpriced mediocrity masquerading as quality. The Surfer Bar continues to be lame, but guys go because they’re horny and that’s where the trim is. Instagram explodes with lifestyle shots and asses and quivers and pictures of poke.

Swell hype spreads, it’ll be insane on the 14th.

Lay day, hype, lay day, hype.

The contest runs on Wednesday at glorified Gums. ADS works his way through the early rounds.  Swell finally shows, but it’s a day late. No contests on Sunday!

Fanning goes out in round three, then heavy trades and rain show up for work.

Perrow plays chicken with the waiting period. A bump shows and they’re in the water!  Six foot, windy, whompy backwash.

But, “There’s some gems out there, Joe!

It’ll be a Llama/de Souza final, and Adriano will put on a majestic display of tactical hassling. Poor Filipe won’t withstand.

And so the season closes.

Not with a bang, but a whimper.

Which one of these two is most popular? Wrong! (unless you said Dane)
Which one of these two is most popular? Wrong! (unless you said Dane) | Photo: Morgan Maassen

Rumor: Craig Ando to leave Quik!

Read here today! Or on Stab tomorrow!

BeachGrit‘s Cardiff-by-the-Sea desk traded T-Mobile service for Coconut Wireless over the weekend and things are jamming off the top because guess what? (Allegedly) Craig Anderson, the Craig Anderson, is trying to climb out of his freshly signed Quiksilver contract and join ex-stablemate Dane Reynolds in the great wide open!

The wind was howling into my source’s coconut, somewhere across the sea, so details were muddled, at best, but it was suggested that young Ando was interested in (purportedly) starting his own line. As you may, or may not, know the boy rides for HUF as well, an upstart skateboarding label with an eye toward stylish minimalism. (look here!) He is the only surfer on the team unless Joey Pepper is also a surfer. Might HUF be broadening into the surf-wear market? Might Ando be the next John Galliano and design a fabulous line of very chic newspaper boardshorts?

And what, if true, does this mean for the proud Quiksilver? I think neither doom nor gloom. Wouldn’t a fresh start be nice? Unburdened by kids at the popular table? Free to explore a budding sexuality? In my professional opinion, the horizon is bright for my favorite brand and I would buy more stock if it wasn’t frozen due to bankruptcy. Cool is dead (RIP) and Quiksilver will come through this wrinkle stronger than ever.

Yes, I am pleased with Coconut Wireless’s service. T-Mobile didn’t work on the best of days. Over to you Stab!

Mr. Galliano and Mr. Anderson bear such a striking resemblance, no?
Mr. Galliano and Mr. Anderson bear such a striking resemblance, no?

Quiksilver Bankrupt

Official: Dane Reynolds leaves Quik!

Goodnight, sweet prince...

As reported here circa three weeks ago, Dane Reynolds was rumored to be walking away from a few years and a few million dollars on his Quiksilver deal. It has now been confirmed.

This string of stunning accuracy on reporting rumor (hello Twiggy! you too Kelly + Firewire! hi Stab!) has, indeed, put BeachGrit at the front of the line to receive surfing’s first Pulitzer prize. Our open hands tremble as we trust the dean of Columbia’s graduate school of journalism will appreciate what we do. Accolades aside, how do you feel about this move? Do you care?

Dane did certainly come of age with the Mountain and Wave on his nose. Remember how he used to hand draw it so cutely? But before that he absolutely thrilled in Young Guns, etc. He was everyone’s favorite surfer and he was Quiksilver’s actual surfer.

And now he is older. Still electric. Still such a wonderful personality but older. Will he ride for Vans head to toe? It seems like a natural fit but what will he actually do? This is the more important question. Will he decide that the tour is his place and compete, head down, for the next five years? Will he watch View from a Blue Moon and decide to knock John John off the perch by making the better best surf film ever? Will he become a recluse?

Only time will tell.

But do you want to know what is a virtual sure bet? BeachGrit’s Pulitzer.


Just in: Swamis’ surfer body identified

Local shaper and longtime local dies under a full moon.

Two days ago a wetsuited surfer was discovered lying face down on the beach at North County San Diego point Swamis with a broken board still attached. He was pronounced dead when paramedics reached his body.

Today the body was identified as local shaper, longtime Swamis local Kenny Mann. Fox News reports:

“Kenny’s been surfing that area since he was about 10. He even made his own boards before he could drive. Swami’s was his spot. A lot of people even called that inside section ‘Kenny’s,’” lifelong friend J.P. St. Pierre said of 61-year-old Kenneth “Kenny” Mann of Encinitas.

St. Pierre said Mann had no medical condition and was in great shape. Mann was believed to have been night surfing Thursday night, which friends said he did often.

During the week, the National Weather Service put out a coastal flood advisory due to high tides and strong rip currents.

Mann and St. Pierre’s father were founding members of the surfboard company Moonlight Glassing. Now a stable among surfers around the world, the company opened in 1979.

“In the surfboard industry, [Kenny’s] a legend. I don’t think anyone has sanded more surfboards than him. He’s made surfboards for some of the biggest surfers in the world,” St. Pierre said.

St. Pierre can’t imagine was the first day back at the factory will be like.

“It’s going to be horrible. Just horrible. Our whole universe has shifted.”

So far, no plans have been made for his memorial.  He leaves behind no wife or children. 

Cause of death is still unknown.