What decisions have you made, when young, that continue to haunt?
Matthew Wilkinson is, by all accounts, a wonderful young man. Kind etc. I have thoroughly enjoyed the brief time I’ve spent with him. He was considerate, easygoing, etc. I think we ate Chinese once in San Francisco and while I don’t remember him paying the bill, I don’t remember paying it either.
And when he started last year’s season as if flung by a trebuchet the world chuckled and applauded. “Oh look! The fun boy won!” “The blue collar kid!” The yobbo!”
“Surfing yobbo. He’s not pretty but this is Australia’s latest king of the waves.” The Australian proudly declared of the native son.
Matt Wilkinson took offense at being called a “yobbo” though (Australian for redneck I think) and called for the writer, a wonderful journalist by the name of Fred Pawle, to be publicly whipped.
But it appears as if he has been branded whether he likes it or not. This morning, Australia’s Daily Telegraph began its write-up of the Bells’ event thusly:
He was the jester of world surfing – a likeable, fun-loving larrikin and one of the most popular surfers on the world tour.
And do you think Matt Wilkinson likes how he is forever branded? A larrikin (Australian for drunk boy I think)? The jester of world surfing?
I think not since he called for a flogging just last year but that is the pain of youth. Decisions made when young that refuse to let go even after age and seriousness take over. Do you think he regrets wearing his funny wetsuits? Not getting Invisalign? Wearing cowboy hats?
Oh but he shouldn’t! Regret is a poisoned chalice. He should embrace his branding like it has embraced him. He should roll out more funny wetsuits and he should never get Invisalign and the cowboy hat suits him. He is our man from Snowy River!
Five days ago, lil Mike C lit up on the horrors that lay await for any surfer should he sire a child.
A brief, but revealing excerpt:
“The simplest tasks are made difficult, the most basic pleasures induce painful amounts of guilt, and surfing — especially for people with nine-to-fives — is almost entirely out of the equation. Being a parent truly is a full-time job, and through this trip I’ve gained newfound respect for any child-rearing couple. I don’t know how single parents even survive, to be honest.”
Makes a man tremble in his shoes don’t it? As it should.
I’ve spawned kids almost since the day my vital spermatozoa announced itself in a dream (Nordic woman on rug by fire. Round, brown ass lifted a little, face turning towards me at the moment of ejaculation.)
Three I’ve kept, a few others were binned.
What kind of relationship is it where a woman offers her stud a pass-out? It ain’t reverse sharia. Be your own man. An hour out of her day so she can look after own kid ain’t gonna kill her. And, anyway, there’s a good chance you’re projecting your own guilt onto your gal.
Anyway, I got kids and surf pretty much whenever I want. Tends to be a lack of desire that keeps me out of the water more than responsibilites.
Here’s how it works.
Babies don’t need two parents around ‘em: It’s a simple notion. A baby needs food, sleep and you gotta keep it warm. It takes two adults? The hell it does. It’s one of society’s laws, howevs, that you’ll meet a gal, she’ll want a kid while you’re noncommittal about the idea, so you go along with it cause you’re an easygoing sorta guy. Baby showers. Baby talk. Then the kid comes and you’re suddenly the devil for ruining her life. And you get thrown this guilt thing if you want to go surf. Speak frankly. Share the kid-rearing. She gets up all night to plant the kid on her cans, you do the morning shift and let your gal sleep in. Stuff the baby in a papoose and go surf check. You get back, you hand kid over. You go surf.
But keep it short. Who needs two-hour surfs anyway? You’re not there to talk shit. Surf a double-heat, forty minutes. Twenty waves and you’re out. Your gal is thrilled ‘cause you’re back in an hour. And you ripped the heart out of the session.
Know your tides and swell directions. Don’t drive aimlessly for hours. Know your spot. Hit it.
This pass-out bullshit: What kind of relationship is it where a woman offers her stud a pass-out? It ain’t reverse sharia. Be your own man. An hour out of her day so she can look after own kid ain’t gonna kill her. And, anyway, there’s a good chance you’re projecting your own guilt onto your gal. Maybe she’s delighted your fat ass is out the door.
Multiple kids: This is where it gets tricky. One kid is easy. Two parents means there’s always room for the other to hit the booze or go surf. Two kids is five times as hard as one; three is ten times. My advice? Stick to two and cut ‘em three years apart. That way, your bigger kid can walk, feed itself, don’t need plastic pants etc.
The money thing. Mike C gets it right here. Kids are expensive. And not just school, clothes, school, all those lessons, all those birthday party presents every weekend. But remember pre-kids when hard times hit you could lay low, share a cheap room, live on Weet-Bix? When you got kids it’s not just their welfare, but their view of the world you’re shaping. You don’t want to send ‘em to school looking like bums. Or missing out on all those wonderful material gifts.
Life is meaningless, and absurd beyond measure. At least it is until a couple of kids show up. Their existence in your life creates a sense of legacy and turns you into a teacher of life’s precious gift. It anchors your place in the universe. For the first time in your life you feel love. Real love. A family you created. A world within a world.
And y’know what that means? Don’t get divorced ’cause you want to chase tail. Even if it’s all going to shit, even if the gal is crazy. Especially if the gal if crazy.
Bottom line: If you want your kids to prosper, love your woman, their mama, like she’s the last girl on earth.
Belt me if I’m wrong, but is Brendon Gibbens not Africa’s second-best surfer of today? Of course we could get semantical and insist that Ando is technically Saffa, or that Ramzi Boukhiam’s backhand is a downright weapon, but no. I believe Brendon Gibbens plays Africa’s second fiddle.
For those who believe that Sean Holmes has a timeless flair or that Michael February is an actual human who exists on this planet, allow the clip below to sway you in Brendon’s favor. Also feel free to hit mute and add your own soundtrack, if dungeon metal ain’t your schtick.
I find Brendon’s flexibility a thing of wonder. No one’s legs bend like that except for John and maybe Alex Knost. The inward compression allows Brendon to absorb massive airs without fear of blowing an ankle or knee. It also helps him click some crazy nosepicks when desired.
And what of that last tube? You know it’s a good one when a professional surf filmer stops panning.
All I gotta say is watch out Damien Fahrenfort, this guy is coming for your throne!
John John Florence is a fantastic thing. Did you believe that a surfer might come in our lifetime that could stand up to the mighty myth of Kelly Slater? Oh I’m not saying John John is quite there yet but it is possible that he could unseat the king and become the greatest surfer who ever lived and possible is wow.
Do you think he could win 12 world titles or is that too much? Do you think he could star in the film remake of Baywatch or is it too late?
So many things to think about and while it is nice to ponder super-humanity it is also nice to ponder people like us.
Do you think he could win 12 world titles or is that too much? Do you think he could star in the film remake of Baywatch or is it too late?
People like Australian rapper 2pec. Did you read his story that unfolded in Surfers Paradise? Let’s together from the BBC!
An Australian rapper called 2pec racked up a large bill in a seafood restaurant, before running into the sea to avoid paying, a Queensland court has heard.
Police set off in hot pursuit on jetskis for the man, who later claimed he ran to help a friend give birth on the beach, according to local media.
His bill was over A$600 (£360, $450).
Terry Peck, who has been charged with theft and assault, later said the lobsters were overcooked. The 33-year-old appeared in court on Monday morning after the incident at Omeros Bros restaurant in Surfers Paradise on the east coast.
He allegedly consumed two lobsters, a baby octopus, 21 vodka oyster shots and “a number of Coronas”.
“Oh God! By himself?” said magistrate Joan White when she granted bail, according to ABC News.
A restaurant representative, Mark Hunnybun, rejected the criticism of the standard of cooking, telling the network: “We pride ourselves on cooking our lobsters perfectly.”
Australian media have uncovered some of Mr Peck’s self-produced music, including one track entitled Ozi Ozi Ozi Oy Oy Oy.
And now BeachGrit proudly presents Ozi Ozi Ozi Oy Oy Oy. Enjoy.
How many other waves (on tour) are being surfed to a fraction of their potential?
How the hell can anyone come up with a coherent power rankings post-Margs? You pick John Florence numero uno then throw darts at the dart board to get the rest. Take him out of the equation and it wasn’t a happy event for elite CT surfing. To realise for years we’ve watched elite pros butcher and bog Margs begs the question: how many other waves (on tour) are being surfed to a fraction of their potential? Bells might provide a salutary answer straight off the bat. J-Bay, definitely. The kids ain’t alright.
John John Florence, 24, Hawaii.
Nothing more to say about the gaping performance chasm between John and the rest of the field. That’s been thoroughly marinated and masticated by every surf commenter alive. Thats the what, as to the how and the why one comment cut through: “He showed that the wave isn’t really the problem. They’ve all been surfing it wrong.” – GBP
Key to understanding Florence’s new and correct approach, and I can’t believe I didn’t get there in the finals wrap because he mentioned it two or three times during the day, is snowboarding. Where others tried (and failed) to use traditional top-to-bottom lines on an open ocean sloping peak Florence found the natural fall-line and used it relentlessly to get to the top of the wave with maximum speed.
Once there he simply inserted his board rail and fins against the trim line and, in the same manner a hunter with a razor-sharp bowie knife skins a deer, cut the wave open in one seamless high-speed slice. He executed this turn with a variety of body positions depending on the angle of attack to the lip. Sometimes a classic one-arm-back layback, sometimes using both arms thrown back as the turn lever and sometimes with a more classic “open the shoulders” rotation with an extra tweak at the end, powered up through the ankles and feet and driven through with the hips. It was scored highly and that is just and true.
One human could have matched JJF, theoretically, and he wasn’t surfing in the event. That’d be little Jackie Robinson. Bells Beach has a similar sloping face with a lack of bottom tension in the base of the wave. With a rambunctious Southern Ocean storm track expected to dish up ripe purple fruits over Easter we are on track to see the dose repeated. That is the most hype-free and sober technical description of John’s surfing I can conjure. Ross done good eh?
2. Margaret River Mainbreak.
Any objective world-historical analysis has to focus blame for the disgraceful performances and general adolescent attitudinal deficit at Mainbreak over the past few years on Kelly Slater. Precisely to the doubled up Pipeline wave he rode in 1991 during his first world title year. This shifted Momentum Era focus away from Sunset Beach, fat burger, unsuited to the moderne equipment, to the shorebreak and beachbreak style waves where it has remained ever since. Performance benchmarks at Sunset Beach and J-Bay slid seawards from the Tom Curren/Kong Elkerton high-water marks. I pray Matt Warshaw is neglecting his family and vital Facebook postings to flesh out the narrative in this development in modern surf history. Long-period, open-ocean, enigmatic-but-comprehensible limestone reef, power to burn, specific line required. That’s the equation a generation of pros failed to solve.
3. Adriano DeSouza, 30, Brazil.
In a recent interview Welcome to Paradise, Now lets go surfing then score an eightball and go big at Club Femme Nu author Chozza Smith said he hated the orthodox response. That’s paraphrasing, but you get the drift.
Hating De Souza has become the orthodox response du jour. Bad misread, terrible orthodoxy. De Souza has become the premier problem solver in the biz, the Winston Wolf of professional surfing.
Hating De Souza has become the orthodox response du jour. Bad misread, terrible orthodoxy. De Souza has become the premier problem solver in the biz, the Winston Wolf of professional surfing. He figured judges wanted neo-classical surfing: fully formed bottom-to-top surfing and developed the best combination in the game.
He realised Kelly Slater felt there was a respect deficit from the Brazilians towards him and he used it to needle the the champ and build a strong winning percentage against him. He would have handily won a final against Kolohe and probably Jordy. Cut the wave with better equipment than anyone bar JJF. Strong contender for Bells if John gets caught sleeping in a slow early round heat.
4. Jordy Smith, 29, South Africa.
He shifted the most water and I really wanted to love his surfing after the J-Bay cut in Just Now. But on reflection, and after sober analysis of all his waves on the heat analyser I couldn’t give it more than three stars. Maybe two-and-a-half. Bells favourite based on forecast.
5. Sebastien Zietz, 29, Hawaii.
Singlehandedly lifted day one from mediocrity with his 10-point tube ride. Imagine if that was the first wave of the day and not the last and they gave it an eight. Wouldn’t have been a single double-digit heat score all day.
6.Kolohe Andino, 23, USA.
Will Brother regard the final with John John as a keeper result or feel the sting of being publicly humiliated in a one-sided final? Psychological question to determine the rest of his year. Answer will be determined in the first heat at Bells.
7. Michel Bourez, 31, French Polynesia.
I thought judges over-cooked his scores all event so I went back to the heat analyser to confirm the impression. I bring your attention, as exhibit A, to his last scoring wave in the quarter-final against JJF. A double-pumped bottom turn to a tail-slide-to-recovery, a two-stage cutback and two nice turns at the end. Based on the scale set by JJF, a tail-slide off the fins should have got a slow clap not a high eight. Cynics might suggest judges wanted to make a closer heat of it than reality was providing. No matter. His boards looked, once again, chattery and under-nourished.
8. Julian Wilson, 28, Australia.
Technically superior to every other surfer on tour, physiologically adapted with a wombat arse enabling low centre of gravity not seen since Occy. Can win at every stop on tour, charges heavy lefts blah blah blah.
Can’t control his own destiny.
The problem seems to be mental, namely an insufficiency of or inappropriate arousal. No snickering in the back please. This is serious. He needs a coach, an expert in rising to the occasion. If Ross Williams has been a success for JJF then perhaps Joey Turpel can mimic the magic for J-Dub.
The problem seems to be mental, namely an insufficiency of or inappropriate arousal. No snickering in the back please. This is serious. He needs a coach, an expert in rising to the occasion. If Ross Williams has been a success for JJF then perhaps Joey Turpel can mimic the magic for J-Dub. That would solve two problems in one elegant fell swoop.
9. Zeke Lau, 23, Hawaii.
First season in Hawaii, I slept on the beach at Three Tables beach, under the pine trees, until a Vietnam vet in camo squatted over me one night and chased me after I woke in fright.
Second, in my car, a Lincoln Continental mk4 that got about half-a-mile to the gallon.
Third, in a series of bush camps culminating in a deep camp behind the Kui Lima at Kawela bay. We had endless supplies of ephedra from a contact in town and added it to pancakes cooked on open fires. Surfed all day on it. Financed this subterranean anarchic existence selling Big Island bush buds, or Mex dirt weed, maybe an eight-ball to backpackers.
This story has no relevance to Zeke Lau but his early round exit at Margs was powerful and I very much look forwards to seeing him lay it over in the Bells Bowl. He was one of the few who didn’t turn flat at Margs.
10. Mick Fanning, 35, Australia.
Second comp in a row he got torched. Out of anyone on tour he’s probably best placed to learn and apply the Florence Line. The extra tweak at the end of the turn is in reach, as is a power advantage in the Bells Bowl with the torqued-out extended body wrap. He’s surfed five-to-ten percent better this year and been cruelled. If justice applies, Bells will mark the comeback into contention by J-Bay.
11. Owen Wright, 27, Australia.
He looks too thin to me and lacks power but gained the finals by several massive closing turns. Wilko will shade him at Bells.