First half of the day recap...because it's just too good!
Pipe was looking ugly in the AM. Lumpy bumpy North swell, none of that lovely West to bounce it off the bowl and turn square. Long lined up lefts, pinching, chandeliers tearing heads off. It did not look fun. Definitely a day at work for everyone who survived round two.
Bede got the day started on a good note. Air drop body compression. Shit hurts on a normal wave, no surprise he got sent to the ER.
Hospital on Oahu is a dice roll. From North Shore you’ve only got two options, if it’s truly urgent. Kahuku General is a tiny place. Across the street from the tourist ghetto that slings corn and shrimp at rental cars. They can stabilize you, but aren’t set up to repair much. I’ve always wondered where the legions of Mormons who infest that side swing when they need medical attention. Do they just pray for healing? That’s the type of shit they do, right? Do they have a secret medical center, one that’s well stocked and highly trained and kept secret from those of us who are going to hell because we don’t subscribe to their insane ideology? Maybe. That’s definitely the type of shit that they would do.
In the other direction, not much further away, you’ve got Wahiawa General. Bigger, better set to provide service. But the ER is a slow moving line of chronics complaining of non-specific stomach pains in a quest to secure doctor sanctioned opiate scrips.
Most people will tell you to make the drive to Queen’s, if the condition ain’t truly emergent. It’s where Owen went. But I spent a night in its confines, on a filthy folding chair, waiting for a pro to check the disgusting growth that had sprouted from behind my ear. Guy took a look, diagnosed me with a “swollen head” and sent me home. Then I came a cunt’s hair from death.
But it’s still your best option, where they recently chopped on my ear. I used a doc imported from the mainland though, still not too confident in the abilities of Oahu residents.
Kauai is a whole ‘nother story. Great medical care, I don’t know why. Maybe ‘cuz this is where the money is. The Princeville billionaires lure in the best and brightest, those at the tail end of a successful career but not yet ready to retire.
Stoked to see CJ beat Italo. Last event of his career, former world champ, albeit with a pretty heavy asterisk. I wrote off Italian Ferrari pretty hard early in the season, sure got that one wrong. Rookie of the year, yeah? Kid’s an ADS with a touch more steez, could be a contender in the years to come.
Slater at Backdoor, the man knows the spot. I wonder why his house didn’t get burgled this year? It’s turned into something of a tradition, local addicts looting his gear, flipping it god knows where. Kind of difficult to unload purloined boards belonging to the world’s most famous surfer on a teeny tiny little hunk of rock.
John John murdered Taj, no big surprise at scary strange Pipe. JOB’s gift to Fanning, however, well… I guess that wasn’t either. Homeboy just doesn’t have that competitive edge, and with a world title on the line you knew Mick’d make it work. Someone told me that Fanning paid him off, a cool ten large to take a dive. But that someone was my french bulldog, Mr Debs, and he’s hardly clued in to the coconut wireless.
Is it fucked that I always secretly hope (not so secret, anymore) that Mason Ho will flail and fail? Dude’s my favorite surfer in the world, with his boyish grin and impish twinkle. But the tour will eat him alive. That kind of creativity doesn’t consistently win heats, my world’s a better place if he’s focused on getting clips and playing spoiler when he’s gifted a wildcard.
The Flying Llama used his priority to shit on Kai Otton, a lovely side effect of overlapping two man heats, and got enough to squeak the lead. Underscored, a bit. Ross Williams agrees. Title shot on the line, will it be enough? ‘Twas not. Good night, sweet prince. See you next year.
Poor guy post heat wanted to cry so bad. Husky voice, hold it back, be a man. I’d’ve been sobbing, those high hopes come crashing down. But I tear up at the drop of a hat, so maybe I’m projecting. Pop on a Pixar flick, manipulate my emotions, watch me sob.
I’d been looking forward to the Parko/Otton heat. Beach chair side bets are good fun, really hoped it’d lead to a back and forth battle. No such luck. Kai came damn close on his last, clipped at the last moment, now Parko gets to ride him like a mule.
Can we get a moratorium on “knifing the takeoff” and “packing the barrel?” Variations are cool. “Holding his rail in the face like a knife to a whore’s throat,” would be great. “Packing the Backdoor,” would earn a giggle. But, like “jam” and “wrap,” they’re done.
Poor Seabass, earns a ten then off the tour, in the same damn heat. Come back to the Garden Isle, lick your wounds, then give it another go. Sure seems like J-Flo’s shrugged that chip off his shoulder, got his act together. Earned his win, didn’t try to dazzle. Can’t call it luck, frenchie’s a killer at Pipe.
Melling/Wilson was a bit of a nail biter. A make or break heat for Adam, off the tour if he didn’t pull it off. Last wave of the heat just barely got him through. Looks like he’s riding a Tokoro, good decision, for sure. Wade’s the Glen Hall of the shaping world. Tiny little guy, high pitched voice. Sweet god damn, does he build a beautiful board! And he charges Pipe, not a lot of high level shapers with a place in the line up. Arakawa gets more press, but if it were my job to win I’d be throwing money Wade’s way.
I just learned that Mick’s brother died last night. No more jokes about the guy, today. How the hell do your keep your shit together with that news rattling around inside your head? Sure as fuck gonna suck some sweetness from his victory, should he come out on top at the end of it all.
Last heat of round three, pretty damn important for ADS. It’s been fun to see his public perception turn. Looks like people are coming around, starting to feel some love for the squat stance little man who’s got the judging criteria dialed.
I’ve got a doctor’s appointment today, have to head down to Wilcox so Dr Netzer can poke and prod at my swollen dome, make sure nothing is infected, hopefully pull this packing foam out of my ear canal. Stuff itches like mad, I can feel it shift every time I chew or swallow. Already running late, just waiting to see if De Souza makes it through.
Gonna miss the Round Four super heat. Slater/Fanning/Florence! That’s a kick in the nuts. But Lihue ain’t too far away. Should be back in time to watch the last few heats, catch up on what I missed during lulls. Run two laptops at once, stream one live, click through those I missed.
Adriano wins it! And I’ve gotta go. Shoot this off to Chas (Derek’s busy trying to earn us some dough), finish up when I get back.