Rumor: Steph Gilmore’s day off?

Gilmore... Gilmore.... Gilmore....

Are there some mornings you wake up and just don’t want to go to work? Where the tasks of the day seem so pointless, so… just… pointless!

For me never. BeachGrit is my work! The second happiest place on earth™!

But for you I can imagine and for Stephanie Gilmore too. The world number five has withdrawn from the Cascais Pro, stop number eight on the Samsung Galaxy Tour brought to you by Paul Speaker.

The World Surf League issued a press release reading:

Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), six-time WSL Women’s Champion, has withdrawn from the Cascais Women’s Pro due to illness. The Australian is suffering from an ear infection and has not been cleared to travel by her physicians.

“Really disappointed to have to withdraw from Portugal,” Gilmore said. “I felt like I was finally in a rhythm at Trestles and looking forward to carrying that momentum to Europe. Hoping to heal up in time for France. Good luck to all the girls in Cascais.”

But is she really really disappointed or just pretend disappointed? A picture has surfaced, just hours ago, that shows Steph having a seemingly good time in Indonesia. A comment underneath the picture reads “Portugal is way more fun!! Not!!”

Is there a way to get to get to the island nation without traveling?


But maybe also Stephanie Gilmore just did not feel like going to work.

I once worked at Disneyland (the first happiest place on earth™) driving submarines and didn’t feel like going to work so called in sick with tuberculosis. The next day when I showed up I was met by very higher up health officials who escorted me to a small office. I told them my tuberculosis was no big deal, walking tuberculosis, but they got very angry because I drove submarines which are really small, airtight petri dishes.

(I didn’t really have tuberculosis just tested positive because I had been exposed.)

In any case, let’s wish Steph a speedy recovery!

But while we are wishing… let’s also wonder who’s who in this Ferris Bueller remake!

Steph is Ferris, of course.

Who is Ferris’s sister Jeannie? Maybe Silvana Lima (rough entitled attitude).

Who is Mr. Rooney? Of course Paul Speaker!

Who is Mr. Rooney’s secretary Grace? Dave Prodan!

Who is Charlie Sheen? Chris Ward?

shark attack ballina
This is what a great white bite looks like. Leg belongs to Cooper Allen, a 17-year-old surfer from Ballina, on Australia's far north coast, who was hit by a 10-foot white last year. Locals call this a "Ballina hickey." | Photo: Amanda Abate/Channel 7/TwitterSource:Twitter

Local: “We call this a Ballina hickey!”

A teen surfer was hit by a great white yesterday. Here's a photo of his wound!

If you follow the news, you would’ve heard about a teenage surfer being hit by a great white at Ballina yesterday. Bit on the leg, didn’t die. Will exit hospital with a hell of a story, will never want for female company etc.

News? Didn’t feel like it.

The coastal town of Ballina, which is just south of Lennox Head and Byron Bay, has become ground zero for great white attacks in Australia, surpassing even the Margaret River area. A bite that isn’t fatal and with no limb disappeared, feels like just another pencil scratching in the diary of attacks there. Weird thing is, although Ballina, whose best waves form off the two jetties that straddle the Richmond river (North Wall, rights, South Wall, lefts) has always had a shark reputation, it was for the bull sharks that hang in the river not great whites.

For whatever reason, great whites prowl the joint now.

This is how your favourite shark bounty hunter Fred Pawle reported the attack: 

As he lay on the sand surveying deep gashes to his leg after being attacked by a “massive” shark, 17-year-old Cooper Allen this morning made one heartfelt request: Don’t tell mum.

“He said, ‘you can call my dad, but don’t tell mum yet’,” said local surfer Dan Webber, who was in the water 5m away when the attack happened at Ballina, NSW and raised the alarm.

Mr Webber said Cooper, who lives across the road from the beach at North Wall and is one of the most regular teenagers in the water, was extremely lucky, and is likely to make a full recovery. He added that Cooper is an HSC student at one of the local schools.

“I’m no doctor, but I think he’s going to be fine,” Mr Webber said, still shaking from the experience.

There were four “huge” gashes in his leg about 5cm apart. “So the shark was a massive f**king thing,” he said.

Mr Webber was on his way out to join Cooper and his two mates when the attack happened. He was wading in waist-deep water when he saw a dark object in the water. What unfolded then was similar to what famously happened to pro surfer Mick Fanning last year, he said.

“His two mates swam up to him, and I joined them,” he said. “He’s just swimming backwards away from it. I think it (the shark) was tangled up in his legrope. I saw the dorsal and the tail fin thrashing around.

“He’s looked at me and said, ‘get someone to call an ambulance’. He was so calm and in control.”

Mr Webber screamed at two surf lifesavers who were erecting flags on the beach. He was surprised that the response was not urgent.

“Everyone was just standing around. It was like a whole minute of me screaming. But I was screaming for an ambulance. I should have screamed shark.”

Anyway, the attack was biz as usual in Ballina.

But what excited me was the graphic photo of the wound (main photo). Those teeth marks. Can you imagine the scar?

And, here, is the presumed attack shark. Ooowee, he’s big.



Have you ever wondered how to kill a great white? Click here. (It ain’t that hard. But you must have the advantage of being on a boat.)

Have you ever wondered how to humanely rid an area of great white sharks? You can click here! 

Jack Robinson Teahupoo
This grab of Jack at Teahupoo looks like a man out of control, yeah? According to the big-waver Mark Mathews it's all part of the plan. "He knows how to wipeout…safely," says Mark.

Watch: Jack Robinson in Hollow Ground

The fresh and brilliant teenager Jack Robinson in a four-minute short film.

Late last year, I got employed by the big-waver Mark Mathews to ghost-write two e-books. For a week, I sat with Mathews and asked him…everything… to do with big waves.

Around the same time, Jack Robinson, who was seventeen at the time, was demonstrating how casually Teahupoo could be ridden, and survived, even when everything goes wrong. And, Mark, who’s not exactly unfamiliar with drama in big waves, was perplexed by his ability to safely eject.

“He’s the master of it,” said Mark. “Just watch how he does it at Teahupoo. The ejection is clean, and by clean I mean he jumps safely away from the lip, because everything he did prior to ejecting was perfect. He stayed in the zone, he paddled hard, he didn’t hesitate. He jumps clear of the lip and penetrates the wave at the bottom.”

A couple of months later, Jack beat Jamie O’Brien and Mason Ho and anyone with a name at Pipe, at the trials for the Pipeline Masters.

You want to call Jack Australia’s version of John John Florence, well, go ahead.

Watch this four-minute clip for further proof.

A partying Brad Gerlach? Maybe.
A partying Brad Gerlach? Maybe.

Rumor: New surf film deemed “too sexy!”

I've had it! Absolutely had it!

Do you want to know what makes my blood absolutely boil? You already do! Conservatism in surfing! I rail against tsk-tsk and holier-than-thou and it’s-a-legitimate-sport and The-Inertia every single chance I get because rrrrrrrrrggggggggg it’s fucking surfing! Fucking! Surfing! Fucking! Cocaine! I mean SURFING!

And there goes my happy kick. Longtom? Where are the oxys and longnecks? Longtom! Gimme two!

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh and now that I’ve calmed down just a touch let me explain what launched me into such blind rage. There’s a surf movie out there, see, called Let Them Eat Surf and it’s about the birth of surfing on France’s Atlantic coast and I’ve only heard tell of its existence, only seen a few blurry clips, but also heard rumor rumor that it has been rejected by certain New Mexico lifestyle enthusiast magazines because “Too many drugs. Too much nudity.”

And put the breaks on right there! Hold the motherfucking phone! Take drugs and nudity out of surfing and what is it?


I’ll tell you what it is. Ice skating. No wait. Ice skating had Tanya Harding.

It’s synchronized diving. No wait. Synchronized diving has marathon sex scandals. (Have you read this one? It’s incredible! Do here!)

It’s pre-school patty cake in the shallow end of the pool.

Yeah. That’s what it is.

Let me eat surf!

And Longtom! Gimme two more!

Maurice? Maurice Cole? Is that you? What's in your hand?
Maurice? Maurice Cole? Is that you? What’s in your hand?

Film: Let’s hold hands in Morocco!

A gorgeous short film that comes to us from a very happy place!

One of the things that makes this BeachGrit most magnificent is its yin-yang nature. Derek Rielly is brunette. I am blonde. Derek Rielly speaks with a full Western Australian accent. Mine is flat American west coast ugly. Derek Rielly looks best with a sweater tied loosely around his neck. Me in a wifebeater sans accoutrement. Derek Rielly loves the Jew and I love the Arab (except Arabs that hail from Saud/Kuwait/UAE).

We are like a pre-breakup version of SurfStitch‘s Lex Pedersen and Justin Cameron. A living, breathing example of peace on earth. The new!

The bizarro Derek Rielly and Chas Smith (rich, grude-holding and filled with rage!)
The bizarro Derek Rielly and Chas Smith (rich, grude-holding and filled with rage!)

And look at this gorgeous small film brought to us by a wonderful Moroccan. Sure we can quibble on Moroccans being “Arab” but let’s not. Let’s just watch the golden light filter down to earth, bathing everyone and everything in warmth.

Don’t you want to be right here?

I have been and it was dreamy, though slightly colder. I surfed with wonderful friends and we laughed and made fun of some sort of German surfer. Or maybe he was Dutch. I can’t remember. The surf was very fun and the scene was very fun too.

This film, anyhow, featuring a spot as opposed to a person, makes me very happy. Watching the Moroccans dance upon the waves makes me very happy. Arabs (except the ones that hail from Saud/Kuwait/UAE) make me happy. And its maker, Khalil Bougaizi, shows real talent.


P.S. The song title is “I am the Antichrist to you” and written/performed by a Japanese artist named Kishi Bashi who scored the music to new Travis Rice film The Fourth Phase and played live at the premier. He was wonderfully sincere, a pleasure to speak with and he makes me very happy too.

Long live the anti-depressive!