Freddie P melts down, Mason Ho is everywhere, the New Yorker loves BeachGrit and more!
Another year of living the dream gone for good, an ever dwindling number left. I always get a little maudlin on New Year’s eve, feel like I’m racing the clock to get in as much fun as I can until my body finally breaks down. Probably got at least another twenty good ones left, but I’ve noticed that life speeds up as you get older. Pretty cliché, that realization.
Lists are easy, end of the year lists are lazy. But like Chas mentioned yesterday, there ain’t a hell of a lot going on. But I don’t feel like dredging up a video and clamping a half-assed paragraph to it, so I’m gonna write one. Not for you, for me. I smoke maybe a little too much weed, it’s always good to write shit down so you can look back and manufacture the memory.
Here’s a few fond memories of 2015.
Freddy P’s retirement: His Snapper meltdown was legendary.
Going out on a ten at Trestles even more so.
Surviving: A skull infection came damn close to killing me in 2014. That sucked, rattled my cage hard. But that type of shit doesn’t happen often, once in a lifetime for most.
But I’m special, so this year I got to go under the knife for an infection in my shoulder, then spend a hellish week locked in the hospital while a series of nurses poked, prodded, and pumped me full of a melange of opiates and antibiotics. Pretty sure one of them caught me jerking off, late one night.
But I’m still here! Maybe immortal? Whatever the case, life doesn’t seem so crucial anymore, much easier to let the small shit go. After all, it could be lights out at any moment.
William Finnegan: This just happened, but did y’all hear Finnegan name check BeachGrit on Surf Splendor?
Pretty cool, a New Yorker level scribbler reading our stuff, and liking it. Definitely gave me a little ego boost, even if the discussion centered around Chas and Derek. I’m a hard working part of this thing too, you know!
Oh well, maybe next year, instead of “Derek and Chas’s site” it’ll be “Derek, Chas, and some dude named Rory’s site.”
Mason Ho: Clip after clip after clip after clip. Each one different, magic, adorable. His post heat interviews, the best in the business. A semi-final finish at Pipe! Here’s to hoping we ain’t seen nothing yet!
The WSL: Plagued by bad surf, constant injuries, terrible calls, and a total inability to lock down sponsorships, 2015 was not good for professional competitive surfing. Which sucks for me, as a person who truly wants to watch the best surfers in the world go head to head. Bit it’s also great for me, as a person who loves to write critical shit on the internet that’s read by a handful of people.
Sustainable: Such a great buzzword! Sounds nice, but really just means that something can go on for forever. Like poverty, or American cops shooting unarmed black people. The Turtle Bay Resort scored a sustainable PR coup when they got permission to develop a parcel of pristine land, but spun it as a conservation effort. Well done, bravo.
#vanlife: Being a bum has never been hipper. Sure, living in a car sucks, and there’s a huge chance you’ll get robbed, maybe raped, definitely hassled by cops. But it birthed an entire group of people who will soon self destruct as they realize their terrible decision, and it lowers rental prices for those of us who enjoy hot showers, fast internet, and a place to shit that isn’t frequented by degenerate hobos.
Kauai: My first full year on the Garden Isle, and, man, do I fucking love it here or what? Best place on earth, my wife’s gonna have to drag me kicking and screaming if she ever wants to move off island.
Money: For the first time in my life, and all thanks to my lovely wife, I’m not broke as fuck all the time. It’s an amazing thing, paying bills on time, fixing your car when it breaks, buying food you want instead of what’s on sale.
And, yeah, I’m anti-capitalist, loathe anyone who self identifies as an entrepreneur, recognize I’d be among the first against a wall when the revolution comes. But I’m a creative type, so I’m sin free. I get to benefit sans accountability, and having your cake while eating it is a beautiful thing.
Beach Grit: It’s corny, lame, and more than a little self-congratulatory, but I’m so fucked stoked to be a part of this gig. When Derek asked me, out of the blue, to be a part of it I was pretty amped. The way it’s grown over the last year has been amazing. I think we’re making something special here, and we’ve somehow got a community of commenters who actually say intelligent shit. On the internet! And some of them are people who I grew up reading, sucking down every word, hoping to one day be a part of the pack. Fuck, Matt Warshaw sent me a complimentary Facebook message the other day, Derek hooked me up with Surfer’s Journal. It’s, literally, a dream come true.
Twenty sixteen will be here soon, I’m gonna get drunk and light off some fireworks.