Courtney Conlouge featuring a profound lack of sexy.
Courtney Conlouge featuring a profound lack of sexy. | Photo: Steven Lippman

ESPN and the sexless nude!

The sporting behemoth has robbed us of our lust!

It is the time of year when ESPN’s Body Issue comes out and, I’ll be honest, I wish they would stop making it.

I assume that the sporting behemoth launched the idea back when they were competing with Sports Illustrated for print magazine market share. Do you remember the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition? It dripped with PG-13 sex. Oh it had nothing to do with sports at all and oh completely objectified women but my young self didn’t care. It was legal Hustler. Do you remember print magazines?

In any case, the Body Issue has taken on enough cultural weight to be featured on daytime talk shows, etc. The media thrills at seeing professional athletes ripple. How magnificent! How stately! And it generally includes one or two surfers. Who could forget Kelly Slater or Coco Ho? What about Laird and Gabby Reese?

Theoretically it is all very titillating except do you know what ESPN has stripped away along with the clothing? Any semblance of sex! The athletes, standing proud in their birthday suits, have as much sexual fire as a race horse, gleaming in the sun. As much carnal stir as a well-polished bicycle.

Just look at Courtney Conlogue, pictured above. She surfs very well and may be interesting but…but… I’ve got nothing! I’ve been visually neutered!

Maybe it is just my Judeo-Christian values, or the fact that I am not French, but nudity = mmmmmm. Equating nudity with machinery is an unnecessary bummer. Especially when the world is going to hell and all we have left are dreams.

Give us back our mmmmmm!

Who knew the king had so much junk in the trunk?
Screen Shot 2016-06-27 at 11.45.57 AM
I love Coco but this picture is the dictionary definition of dull.
If these two titans invited you over for a swinging eve then showed you this picture I would hope “No thank you” would be your answer.

Unbent: The mighty British surfer!

Will the Brexit steal his prestige? Let's ask an expert!

The Brexit! The Brexit! England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland shaken, not stirred, by a global kick in the nuts! What do they call nuts in the United Kingdom? Bollocks? Smashed in the bollocks by a bloody trainer! That’s what they call shoes, yeah? Trainers?
The British like to leave their country and live in other people’s but now that they have voted to brexit the European Union what will happen to them? Specifically, what will happen to the mighty British surfer?
Well it just so happens I know one! His name is Paul Evans and he helms Surf Europe and may be my favorite surf journalist in the world. Also, he is surprisingly handsome considering he is a British man. He lives in France and I feel he will know deep truths.
As an expat Brit in France does the Brexit hurt you?
I’m not sure if it’ll make that much difference. There are plenty of Swiss and Norwegians roaming free around here, breathing our EU air. They never had any truck with the European dream, for not wanting to share any of their plundered gold / oil wealth with the siesta-taking, Pope-bothering economies. So perhaps we can be the new them, only not as good as languages, but better at interesting.
Will a Frog mob descend on your property and grab it back?
No quite the opposite. I think Brits will head back voluntarily, thus leaving l’Hexagone entirely bereft of inhabitants willing to form an orderly queue or stop at pedestrian crossings. And then they’ll be sorry they burnt our lambs!
But if they do where will you go? 
I’ve always fancied Bermuda.
Will British surfing lose prestige now or will the brexit make British surfing strong again?
Brexit will probably see British surfing go from strength to strength, similar to when English football teams were banned from European competition for hooliganism in ’85. After a few years in the wilderness, we came to the World Cup in Italy in 1990 with the best player (Gascoigne) and best official team song (New Order!!). Although actually, come to think of it… when the Romans left, Britons would spend the next five centuries living in ditches and dying at 25, while the grapes rotted on the vines and the underfloor-heated villas fell into disrepair. So, I see your point, it could actually go either way.
Any advice for visiting London now that it is as cheap as Tijuana?
My London advice remains unchanged. Definitely try to buy weed from outside Camden Tube station. It’ll be a very, very small bud, probably spray painted green and probably with no actual weed in it, but at only £50 a pop, who cares! That’ll be the equivalent of about 10 rupiah.

Action sport cam in “racist mess!”

Ironic racism makes a comeback! Maybe!

Do you remember the heady 2000s when extreme sports turned into action sports and could be used to sell anything from poorly conceptualized music tours to poorly designed cell phones?

Boost Mobile!

That’s right. Boost was an action sport cellular service sponsoring the likes of Andy Irons and probably Bruce (?) etc. Their orange sticker was yo and their messaging was fresh. Action! Sports! Yo!

The company mostly went away due to probably bad service (?). It was busted in Australia for promising 100 text messages for 1 dollar and then that not being altogether true. Whatevs! Shred yo!

In any case, company founder, Peter Adderton went on to launch an action sport camera that delivers 360 degrees vertical/240 degree horizontal panoramic view all in 4k. Yo! I assume the resulting footage is supposed to be used in a virtual reality headset.

Mr. Adderton wanted to show how awesome catching a wider view is and so he commissioned a commercial that features a Trump look alike, a wall and Mexicans. It is not very funny, though clearly parody.

The Los Angeles Times, AdWeek, Gizmodo etc. were each ashamed of it.

TechCrunch, the industry’s leading tech blog, wrote:

What do you do when nobody is paying attention to your 360-degree camera brand? Well, you have a couple of options. You could put together a campaign that shows how awesome your tech is and how it is the perfect match to your target audiences.

Or you could go the other way, enlisting a Trump impersonator and an inexcusable dollop of stereotypes to try to get the word out.

I spoke with 360fly’s CEO Peter Adderton, who claims that 90% of the people they surveyed don’t have a problem with the ad, and that the advert is actually meant to beanti-racist.

“We aren’t idiots. We knew that the ad would be controversial,” said Adderton, saying that he expected that 1% of viewers would hate the advert. “But the feedback from the community has been unbelievable. People tell us they love the spot and say it’s extremely funny.”

“Every other camera out there only shows what is in front of you. It wants to believe just one thing,” says Adderton, drawing a parallel with what is going on in US politics. “In the ad, we have our 360-degree camera bring all the views together, and we say there is a better way. We are trying to bring people together.”

Mr. Adderton, who is Australian, then went on to say he would be a Republican if he was an American citizen.

The best part of the whole racist mess is that 360fly said the spot was rejected by television channels for being too extreme. After researching, neither the Los Angeles Times nor TechCrunch could come up with a single television ad buyer who rejected it.

Tame, not very funny ironic racism that stirs the rage of tech blogs and newspapers but doesn’t actually get rejected from TV because it is not actually very racy and/or 360fly did not have enough money left over to pay for airtime?



Just in: Jetski crashes into Wedge!

A super wreck! Dramatic lifesaving! Perfect viewing!


I’ve done a lot of stupid shit in my life. We all have. It’s part of living. You make bad decisions, pay the consequences. Hopefully learn a lesson. No harm, no foul. Just pick up your shit and move on.

But, you know, there’s a level of utter fucking stupidity that’s hard to swallow. Sticking some firecrackers in your mouth and lighting the fuse.

Making terrorism jokes on line at the airport. Taking out a payday loan. Mixing benzos, painkillers, and booze.  Trying to beat a train at a railroad crossing. Being the only black guy in a group exploring a haunted house. Voting Trump.

How about ramming your jet ski into the jetty at solid sized Wedge? Is that the stupidest thing anyone has ever done?

Gotta be up there. Blow apart an expensive piece of gear, nearly kill you and your lady. Force a bunch of bystanders to risk their lives to save yours. Shut down the spot while your thousand pound hunk of scrap floats about the lineup.

Thank goodness for lifeguards. Or maybe not. Now we’ve gotta live with these people. Maybe shoulda let nature takes its course.

Elio Canestri
Did this kid, thirteen-year-old surfer Elio Canestri, have to die, attacked twice by sharks, for authorities in France, and Reunion, to address the obvious result of protecting the damn bull shark?

Watch: The Sharks Killing Réunion!

A wonderful documentary about an island besieged by protected sharks… 

Reunion Island is a pretty little French island, nearish to Africa’s east coast. Hell of a place. Volcanoes soar into the blue skies. Waterfalls. Warm-water reefs. Brown gals with afros and rows of white teeth. Creole fever. Catch it, as they say.

Like nearby Madagascar, sharks have always been a bit of a thing there. If you surfed there, you played your cards straight: no surfing after rain or in dirty water or river mouths, avoid the east coast, dusk, dawn. Hardly the science of rocketry.

And, so, for years, surfers, swimmers, tourists, co-existed in relative harmony with a steady population of sharks. Fishermen hauled twenty or so tonnes of sharks out of the water, restauranteurs used ’em for shark curry. No species was threatened. Kids could surf. Swimmers could swim.

In 2007 a marine park was created, shark fishing was banned, and…boom…Reunion suddenly become the worst place in the world to jump into the ocean. Eighteen attacks in five years. Seven fatals.

As the Reunion-born pro surfer Jeremy Flores told me last year when hot-rat Elio Canestri was killed, “I can’t tell you how many times I surfed that place by myself. When I heard it was a young kid, thirteen years old, I started shaking. I could picture myself at the same age, frothing with all my friends, just trying to get a surf. On Reunion, it’s a small surfing community, everyone knows each other, and I’ve lost some really close brothers to shark attacks, but this time, to be a thirteen-year-old, one of the best surfers on the island, with all his life in front of him. To die like that, so young, is terrible.”

So when he went back to visit family and pals, Jeremy didn’t go near the ocean.

“It wasn’t worth it to take the risk. It took a long time for people to realise how bad the situation is. People thought it was like everywhere in the world. But, right now, we have the world record for attacks for how many people are here. It’s not like everywhere in the world.”

This documentary, Island of the Sharks, is a wonderful study of an island torn between the political elites on Reunion, and back in France, searching for fashionable “high-tech” solutions to appease their electorate’s squeamishness and locals who either had to avoid the ocean, as suggested by the mayor and at one point enforced by law, or deal with it in a more pragmatic fashion.

In the end, it came down to a little of both. The governments supplied the fabulous vigie requin, divers who swim around the lineup as bodyguards (the movie studies this phenomenon) and a one-kilometre shark net.

It ain’t a perfect solution. Give the fishermen the keys back if you want to surf St Leu again without fear of attack. But at least surf is back on the menu.

Watch here.