Racist: The WSL’s whitewashed tour!

Where is the color?

Rio is running right now, minus many stars/waves but I cannot be bothered watching because I am in Mexico, half margarita hungover, half looking out past cactus and palm upon the gorgeous sea.

Mexico may well be my favorite country on earth, save Djibouti. Its people, food, waves, variety, geography, liquor all inspire and do you remember when the World Championship Tour was also inspired and ran a contest here at Barra? It was one of the best ever.

But they have not been back and why? Why is mainland Mexico not a stop? Why is Indonesia, for that matter, not a stop? What about Namibia, Nicaragua, Morocco? It is a very racist tour when one pauses and looks. The first three stops are in the whitest country on earth then Rio (dark), Fiji (dark), South Africa (white), Tahiti (dark-ish but let’s be honest), California (white), France (white), Portugal (white), Hawaii (unfortunately white).

Rio and Fiji are the only real dashes of racial diversity in the whole stew. Tahiti-ish. And why can’t the Tour be a little more reflective of our colorful earth? Why can’t it come back to Mexico? Why couldn’t it go to Papua New Guinea? I find it all very Trump.

Samsung Galaxy surfboard
How about this thing? A phone built into Gabriel Medina's surfboard. A merciful release from the torture of solitude. "A screen on the deck of the board with built-in LED lights can display Twitter messages with a predefined hashtag as well as graphics with real-time information on the direction and intensity of the wind and the series of oncoming waves."

Hot: Gabriel’s Samsung Surfboard!

An electronic release from the torture of solitude!

A couple of days ago, a dazzling, all-black John Cabianca-shaped surfboard fitted with a telephone was loosed by Samsung and the Leo Burnett agency.

Designed for the world champion Gabriel Medina, the board “took a year and a half to complete, the Samsung Galaxy Surfboard is activated by inserting a Galaxy S7 smartphone. A screen on the deck of the board with built-in LED lights can display Twitter messages with a predefined hashtag as well as graphics with real-time information on the direction and intensity of the wind and the series of oncoming waves.”

Screen Shot 2016-05-10 at 6.37.11 am

Maybe you want to sling a few arrows at the thing, like, who needs more phone time, right? The company responds thus.

“Samsung believes that technology helps drive people’s talent. Since 1986, Samsung has supported, sponsored and promoted various sports initiatives in the countries hosting them. More than supporting athletes, we want to provide them with solutions. The board offers this innovative look at a solitary sport and our convergent technology is a strong differentiator for this and various other sports,” said Loredana Sarcinella, senior marketing director for the Mobile Devices division.

“Unlike other sports, in professional surfing, the athletes are away from the fans from their country almost the entire year. Even during practice, surfers spend hours out at sea, while their coaches are on the shore. These distances are obstacles to the athletes’ evolution and motivation. With the help of Samsung’s technology, we created the Galaxy Surfboard, a board that will connect Medina with his coach and fans while he’s out in the water, in real time,” said Marcelo Reis, co-president of Leo Burnett Tailor Made.

Watch the magic unfurl here.

Oh! And the Gabriel-Samsung telephone combo ain’t the first! The Brazilian Teco Padaratz did it in 2005 with Intel!

Watch here! 


Kelly Slater Sherman

Official: Kelly Slater out of Rio!

The Brazil leg of the tour ain't looking so good right now… 

And another one bites the dust.

Rio ain’t doing so good. The original contest site is fucked, Conner Coffin and Carissa Moore saw some dude get murdered. Parko’s nursing a knee injury by competing in Bali. Kai Otton has “personal matters” keeping him out of the feces infested nightmare they call an ocean. Taj is over it.

And now Slater is out too!

First reports of his opt-out came yesterday, reported by Surfheater. 

Great scoop! Hit him up to find out the details. Looks legit.

“Friends in Rio. They don’t want to be named. News of Slater pulling out will be made official shortly.”

Accompanying that brief message was this story.

Now, I don’t speak Portuguese, but I’ve got good enough Spanish to puzzle it out. Because Portuguese, as well as Italian and French, are all pretty much the same language. Just spoken with varying amounts of marbles in your mouth.

He’ll be replaced by Lucas Silveira, 2016 World Junior Champion.

Silveira’s instagram comfirms he will be competing in the event.

While the WSL hasn’t provided official confirmation that Mr Slater is out I think it’s safe to say you should go adjust your fantasy surfer teams accordingly. If you’ve still got Slater on your team. Which I do not.

Parker: “Happy Mother’s Day, yeah?”

Meet four dazzling surf moms!

Happy Mothers Day, yeah?

Weird holiday for me. Don’t speak to my own mother. I know I’ve mentioned it before. Terrible woman, doesn’t get to be a part of my life. But, still, once a year this day rolls around and kicks loose the ol’ “Why didn’t you love me, Mommy?”

You’d think that shit would go away, but I guess it takes therapy or something. Which I don’t go in for. Prefer not to put a name to what’s wrong with me. Last time got me handed a ‘scrip for lithium. No thanks, I prefer my drugs to be of the recreational variety.

Got the best stepmom on Earth though. Still need to ring her up, wish her well. Tried earlier but she was busy doing some crazy open ocean paddle.

Then it’s time to hit up grandma. Finally the mother-in-law. So it’s not like my life is terrible. Three great ladies who ain’t my wife is pretty good, I think.

Nice thing about holidays in general, easy work for the day. Pull together a few related clips, finish up early, go for a surf. Been damn fun the last few days. Just enough punch to go fast, not quite enough to make you hesitate. Which has made for some spectacular ass beatings and left me sore as fuck each morning. But that’s nothing a hot shower and a handful of ibuprofen won’t fix.

Check out these surfing moms! Listed in no particular order.

Keala Kennelly

She didn’t give birth to the kid, but she’s still a mom. Right? I mean, I don’t think Mothers Day is solely restricted to birth-givers. Don’t see a reason it would be. But gender dynamics are so confusing these days. I don’t really know what I’m talking about. Figure you should take the kindest position.

Lisa Andersen

The fact that Andersen got knocked up by a judge while competing on tour is pretty crazy. Not a great indicator of the judges’ abilities to avoid conflicts of interest.

But you can’t deny she among the best female surfers that ever lived. She was so far ahead of the curve. If you could travel back in time, kidnap her, force her to compete today, she’d still be winning events.

Bethany Hamilton

Bethany may be a bit too godly for my taste, but you just can’t ignore the fact that she’s a damn strong woman. Physically, mentally, whatever. Shark attacks, child birth, seems like there ain’t nothing she can’t come back from.

Not to mention her mind boggling ability to one hand paddle into bombs, and somehow retain her balance despite the loss of an arm.

Alex Florence

Definitely the worst surfer on the list, but that’s facing some stiff competition. Mom John’s a pretty damn good longboarder. Tough too. I’ve seen her take some solid beatings out at smallish Pipe.

She’s also a single mother who raised three boys on the North Shore without a single one turning into a drug addict or thief. Which is a challenge. Lots of bad influences to contend with. I’m surprised she hasn’t written some sort of mothering handbook yet. She’s a smart lady, no doubt she could pump out a best seller.

There’s not really any video of her surfing floating around the web so you’ll have to make do with this short little nothing clip.

Too bad, because she does surf well.

Blood Feud: Surfer vs. Central CA!

Don't you love when geriatrics cross swords?

You’ve surfed The Ranch, no? The Hollister Ranch just a few hours north of Santa Babs, an hour or so south of San Luis Obispo? I have maybe three times thanks to my wonderful brother-in-law Tom. We woke up very early in the morning and launched his little skiff off of the Goleta pier and skittered for many minutes then surfed Little Drakes or Rights or Razors or whatever the hell those waves are called. I got out after a few hours and ate peanut butter sandwiches because I was very hungry.

If you are unfamiliar with The Ranch’s set up, the waves all break in front of private lands. In California the rich are not allowed to own the water though and so if you have a boat, you are allowed to surf. Or if you have a key to the lands. Or if you are very rich.

In any case, it is a well known series of breaks and accessible etc. and I didn’t think the “locals” ever got mad because there aren’t any and there is enough of a barrier to entry for it not to pack out. You have to have a boat. Or a key. Or riches. Maybe if a person pulled up a party boat the “locals” would get mad. Or maybe if lots of pictures appeared in Surfer Magazine.

This last one just happened at the “locals” are apparently furious at the elderly publication, sending in burning hot letters. “Way to expose our breaks, kooks!” and “Kooks!” and “Don’t publish pictures of our waves anymore, fucking kooks!”

Ain’t it wonderful when geriatrics fight battles from twenty years ago? I very much enjoyed Donald J. Trump vs. Ted Cruz and I very much enjoy this.