Four essential ingredients! You won't believe what they are!
One evening, not long ago, I got drunk with a couple lawyers and a journalist employed by our local paper. POG and vodkas, loads of gossip. Very fun.
The journo, a gorgeous and intelligent young woman who is, sadly, happily paired off, was complaining about the censorship she deals with at her job. Because our local paper ain’t hardly a hard news. More like the Springfield Shopper.
Quite a bit of drama stirred up by the puff piece they recently ran on Skydive Kauai, a GI advertiser that saw five dead when the company’s plane crashed earlier this year.
A bit tipsy, we chatted about the state of journalism and our very different roles within that world. She’s a committed soul. Got a degree and everything. Truly believes she can make the world a better place. I’m a bit more jaded. Don’t know if objective “truth” exists at all. If it does, damn sure I won’t recognize it.
She called me a “citizen journalist.” I think it was meant as a compliment. I didn’t take it as such. It’s a term I don’t much care for. Like “blogger.” Don’t call me a fucking blogger.
This morning Derek sent me an article from The Gold Coast Bulletin titled, “Gold Coast Boffins Reveal ‘the Perfect Surfer.‘”
After looking up the meaning of boffin, I skimmed it. In summary: surfers need to be fit.
Duh. Closes with:
There is no ideal body type for surfing — this is a reason why surfing is such an inclusive sport. I have worked with successful athletes that are short and stocky, to tall and lanky and everything in between.
Feel-good nonsense, of course. Two body types work best. Short and skinny, or short and stocky.
Yeah, couple tall dudes always around. But they’re freaks. Being big ain’t good for acrobatic shit. Just reaching stuff on the top shelf. And paddling. Long-ass monkey arms are good for paddling.
Got me thinking, though. Could you build the perfect pro surfer? What would it take? What would they need?
Learn to surf before puberty: I’m sure someone can point out an exception or two. Like Be Aipa, who didn’t start surfing until he was in his twenties.
But the honest-to-fake-god truth is that, if you want to be more than an above-average surfer, you need to start shredding before your balls sprout their first hairs. And you probably want to have an early puberty too. Growing in leaps and bounds in your late teens and early twenties fucking sucks. I speak from personal experience. A late in life body change will fuck your shit up forever.
Lily white life: This might be US specific. I don’t know. Not terribly familiar with race relations in other countries.
But here in the good ol’ US of A we did a fairly effective job of keeping the darker races away from the ocean. Especially in the OC, home to California’s surf industry ghetto and, to this day, one of the honkiest places on Earth.
Even better if you’ve got a highly educated mother who quit her career to raise the kids. Motivated, frustrated, devoid of personal interests. She’ll be more than happy to waste her weekends driving up and down the coast and sitting around, waiting for her offspring’s next heat.
Cultivate a lower than average intelligence: I’m not saying all pro surfers are dumb, only that it’s easier to attain laser beam focus on a solitary pursuit when there’s not much rattling around upstairs.
Outside interests are a death knell for blooming talent. What worse for an NSSA dominator than to discover a love for music, or painting, or reading? All of them are time sucks. Keep you out of the water thinking about more than sliding your next wave.
Thankfully, we have the home school system. You can yank your kid from school, keep those blinders on. Make sure that he’s cursed with chasing a dream he declared during childhood.
A love for Christ: So many Christian surf groups out there. Jesus-themed clothing companies sprout and die like weeds. Great for early career sponsorships. Free gear, some stickers. Maybe a few bucks for contest entry.
Yeah, the god shouters’ll never capture enough market share to finance a title campaign, but they can lend legitimacy to young talent. Stickers on the board, word of mouth referrals. A rep for being easy to manage, while lacking critical thinking skills, is a boon to any team manager. Pass the plate after chanting to the void, maybe wrangle enough to finance a boat trip, complete with church sanctioned photographer. He loves nothing more than shooting pics of moist young hairless boys. It’s his art!