Living up to his middle name!
Do you remember, two days ago, when Alex Gray’s boards were utterly demolished by American Airlines? It hit every major surf site other than BeachGrit because, well, I was busy or something.
A quick recap: Alex flew five CI blades from Oahu to LAX, only to find four of them brutally bisected. Evidence implied that the board bag had been opened and the boards had been purposefully tampered with. Who would do that or why is as much a mystery to me as it is to you.
Alex filed a formal complaint against American Air and started an Instgram crusade against the company, much like John and Jet Blue or Kelly and Hawaiian. Gray claims that this movement isn’t about him or his surfboards, but rather the surfing community as a whole. For too long we’ve been treated like second-class citizens by ski-and-golf-fetishizing bureaucratic skycorps.
It’s safe to assume that Alex will be refunded in whole. To not oblige him would be against the interests of American Air, as they’d have face the consequence of further social media lashings and We’ll never fly with you agains from the larger surfing community, all over a couple thousand bucks. And hey, they’ve still got a chance to stay above United in this whole scandal.
So assuming he gets paid for those boards, Alex is already winning. It’s unlikely he paid much (if at all) for those CIs, so to be compensated for their retail value (~$750 apiece) is to come out way on top. But Alex’s luck doesn’t end here.
As reported by Surfline, Alex Gray has won the GoPro of the World Best Wave category for the winter season with his 4-8x (I lost count) tube ride on a Moroccan slave runner. For his efforts, Alex will receive $25,000 of GoPro cash.
Oh and, this is Gray’s second time winning the GOTW grand prize.
So, let’s recount: Alex spends his year traveling the world to places where he gets really, really tubed. He then videos those tubes and often turns the most euphoric moments of his existence into a serious payday. When returning from these idyllic locales, his boards get destroyed by an airline only to (probably) be refunded by a helluva lot more than he ever paid for said boards.
Not bad, Mr. Gray. Not bad at all.
Now if he could just find a main sponsor…