Eddie Rothman Grant Ellis
The noted North Shore identity and founder of Da Hui, Mr Eddie "Fast" Rothman, at left, and well-regarded photographer, and Surfer magazine photo editor Grant Ellis.

Surfer Mag to Eddie: “We made a mistake!”

Surfer magazine politely requests forgiveness from king of the North Shore!

Last week, we reported that Da Hui Eddie Rothman had chased Surfer mag photo editor Grant Ellis off the beach. It was one of those rumours that we superficially laugh at while being acutely aware that but for the grace of God, go we.

I remember, many years ago, when Fast Eddie brought me under his wing. I’d written a small piece in an Australian surfing magazine on Reno Abillera after the North Shore icon had disappeared while facing cocaine distribution charges.

“If you see Reno,” I wrote. “Give him a change of clothes, maps, food, and a place to stay.”

Other magazines had sternly warned about helping the alleged felon and suggested a call to the police. Eddie preferred my approach.

That winter, after enjoying the hospitality of Eddie and his wife, marvelling at their gorgeous Sunset Beach home with well-equipped gym and giant stuffed turtle on the wall, and meeting his delightful young son Makua, I wrote a long piece on Eddie that included the suggestion that if I misplaced a word I’d be “pushing up pinepples in a lonely field somewhere.”

“Funny guy,” said Eddie, reading the story before it went to press. “You go to school to write like this?”

Yeah, ok, I know. Rule #1 in journalism, don’t show the story to the subject before it goes to press. But, as I figured at the time, I wasn’t exactly writing for The Washington PostWould it hurt to have the story analysed in this one instance? Would it hurt if I didn’t?

Eddie politely read the story then asked that I delete the paragraph that suggested he murdered writers.

I said, yes, thank you, sir.

Earlier today, BeachGrit received a text message from Fast Eddie that read,

“We sent u the short film called Ulu Aloha check it out. Tell us it was worthy of a nomination. Tony Perez said they made a mistake and were going to do something in their mag. Have a good day yo lets go.”

And so the mystery is revealed!

Fast Eddie was made sad that Ulu Aloha wasn’t nominated for a Surfer Poll award and the Tony Perez mentioned is the group publisher of Surfer and Surfing.

Do you think Ulu Aloha should’ve been nominated? Do you believe, like the Group Publisher himself, that Surfer had “made a mistake” and are therefore now compelled to right this wrong by “doing something in their mag?”

Watch below!

Slater Designs
That dazzling new Sci-Fi you ordered? Might have to wait a few more weeks. | Photo: Steve Sherman/@tsherms

Help: Out-of-Work Glassers This Christmas!

Throw a little sugar into their Christmas bowls… 

Earlier today, BeachGrit reported that Global Glassings in Oceanside, California, had disappeared in flames. Acetone will do that. Half-a-mill in damage and a bunch of glassers, who let’s face ain’t the best paid in the biz, suddenly out of work just before Christmas.

An employee trying to put out the blaze was burnt on his face but drove to the hospital on his own accord.

Global Glassing produces boards for Channel Islands, Slater Designs, Firewire, Chemistry, and a wide array of Southern Californian shapers. The destruction will have reverberations through the entire board building community.

Please donate as those who make our toxic toys are the backbone of the entire surfing experience. Their job is critical but they often don’t receive the praise or the pay they deserve. Those impacted are asking for $20,000 to purchase new tools and get back to work.

Please share and help these guys out.

Freak accident that put some really good people out of work and a place to shape. Lets get them back in the bay.

Info soon on how to help!

WSL CEO Paul Speaker seen here telling Red Bull they look fat.
WSL CEO Paul Speaker seen here telling Red Bull they look fat.

Catty: The WSL totally hates Red Bull!

The World Surf League vindictive and thin-skinned!

Are you watching Pipeline right now? The Pipeline presented by Billabong in Loving Memory of Andy Irons? Oh it looks so fun! The storylines unfolding rivet! Favorites winning, favorites losing, favorites getting pushed through because they are favorites and surf for Billabong. The Rosy interviews at heat’s end…

But…wait…wait just one second. The camera. Something is funny about the framing of the shots. Oh I am far too dumb to pick up on this myself, I must admit. A wonderful friend sent a text but I am dumb enough to go through the heat analyzer and… yes! It’s true!

The World Surf League purposefully frames Red Bull hats out of every single post-heat interview, zooming awkwardly in on handsome, saltwater dusted faces.


And you might say, “Well… Red Bull is not the sponsor.”

And I would respond, “Oh. You got me.”

Except, neither is Oakley, Rip Curl, Meo, Hang Loose, etc. etc. etc. and the camera lets those hats shine.



The only hats that get cut out of the frame belong to Red Bull.

Doesn’t this strike you as super catty? Like, unnecessarily vindictive? Like, mean girl? Like, passive-aggressive hurt feelings? Like, wah-wah-wah? Like, bitchy?

Is the World Surf League super catty, unnecessarily vindictive, mean girl, passive-aggressive hurt feelings, wah-wah-wah bitchy? Could this be considered online bullying?

If the hat fits!

But why the cattiness? Maybe because the WSL sent Red Bull an absurd “sponsor me” tape and Red Bull said, “No.” Maybe?

Not Oceanside but dynamic!
Not Oceanside but dynamic!

Danger: Surfboard factory catches fire!

Hazmat crews called in to clean up afterward. A giant mess!

With the amount of naughty chemicals etc. etc. that it takes to manufacture our little rockets it’s quite a wonder that shaping facilities don’t go up in flames every single day. I don’t know what acetone does, exactly, besides strip polish off nails but it even sounds flammable and some caught fire just yesterday at Global Glassings in Oceanside, CA torching the place badly.

The San Diego Union Tribune reports:

Fire tore through an Oceanside surfboard manufacturing shop Friday, burning a worker and causing $500,000 in damage, fire officials said.

Global Glassings employees told investigators they were working with acetone when the blaze sparked.

One worker suffered burns to his face when he tried to put out the flames, fire officials said. The man drove himself to a hospital.

Flames and smoke were escaping from the rear roll-up doors of the industrial building when firefighters arrived about 11:40 a.m.

Shortly after, a section of the roof collapsed and the fire started to spread inside the shop, located on Production Avenue across the Oceanside airport.

Additional crews were called out as firefighters tried to stop the blaze from spreading to adjacent businesses.

The fire was under control after nearly an hour.

It destroyed the manufacturing shop and heavily damaged a next-door smog check facility. Another surfboard shop was in the complex was damaged by smoke and water.

Due to the acetone, resin and other surfboard glassing chemicals, hazardous-materials teams were called out to clean up and dispose of the substances.

Investigators determined the fire was accidental and that it caused $500,000 in damage.

And you know what we should all do? We should all send our favorite shaper a Christmas present this year. They really do put themselves on the line for our joy.

Filipe Toledo
Filipe Toledo's fierce plasticity in France! Ten? Of course! | Photo: WSL

Watch: The Four Best Heats of 2016!

Five hundred heats boiled down to four!

Eleven events on tour means five-hundred plus heats. And that means, periodically, and usually when you step outside or you’re busy manoeuvring sun-lamps around your sick bed, there are a handful of heats that are the apex of enormous effort. Moments that dare take us to a utopia where boredom is annihilated, conservatism scrapped.

Oh, I know. Those early rounds feel like the same surfers painting the same mountain over and over again. Little virtuosity, just crude brushstrokes exhibiting all the subtlety of a Jackson Pollock canvas.

But nice to celebrate the best, yes?

Earlier today, Ross Williams, Martin Potter and Joe Turpel released a short on the best heats of 2016, which you can watch here.

There are four heats analysed: Medina and John John’s semi at Teahupoo, John John, Stu K and Filipe’s round four in France, Taj’s farewell heat in Fiji against John John and Gabriel’s world title castration against Tanner Gudauskas, Trestles.

I could watch Filipe’s ten in France until the repetition drove me mad.

And I still find it difficult to believe Tanner Gudauskas’ three hunched snaps outscored Gabriel Medina’s seven ripostes.

Favourite heat?

Gotta be Taj and John in France.

Watch heats here!