Prom King got one over on me! | Photo: What Youth

I Spent the Night with Christian Fletcher!

And lived to tell the tale!

The other day I wrote a highly debated, virally shared article about Christian Fletcher’s stance on grom abuse. I agreed with some of his points but diverged wildly from others. While some commended my stance, the vast majority of readers shared his views.

Then Christian, having read the post and disagreed with my beliefs, went so far as to create a Disqus account and unleash another couple of comments on the subject. They read:

I guess there is something more!!!
Hey Mikey, if you would have taken a stance in front of me I probably would have shoved my fluorescent colored dildo right up your geriatric wrinkled old ass, you fuckin kook!!!
For the record I’m not looking to be a role model unless you want to set an example of exactly what not to do or quickest way to ruin your career, but those were the CHOICES I made and I wouldn’t change a thing. As far as the kids go, you don’t see little leaguer’s on the field with the Houston Astro’s do you ? Or maybe you do with those thick glasses of yours!! Do you see Pop Warner kids on the field with the New Orleans Saints ? NO because a big pissed off mother fukker like Kyle Turley would be ripping off more than just THIER HELMET!!! Now that is the same reason they should not be in the lineup at Trestles especially when San-O is right there or Doheny etc. oh sorry that’s probably where you surf if you do surf or are you one of those lames that just sits around and writes about it and as far as calling the cops that is completely unforgivable!!

And then…

After reading some of these comments I would like to let all you people who think you know me understand a thing or two about me. I was not bullied nor was my dad a prick but he was more like a Nobel peace prize winning mother fucking professor!! I was taught by the best how to deal with this world full bullies bitches and snitches and not fall prey to bullshit they try to bombard me with! Thanks dad and mom I love you guys for bringing me up right and teaching me how to deal with all these Lames!!!!! Don’t worry , I don’t feel special though cause my dad will drop in on you too!!! Hahahahahaha

In the first comment Christian was confused by my author avatar, an iconic photo of the late, great Jacques Cousteau, but with the rest of his message he was quite clear: he’s not a role model, kids don’t belong in “professional playing fields”, and his parents brought him up right.

While I still didn’t agree with everything Christian had to say, I was encouraged that my writing had caught his eye and wondered if he’d be interested in a legitimate interview.

After a playful text exchange, Christian made it clear that he didn’t want to talk unless he was getting paid. I poked the bear with a few sharpened twigs and eventually he rang me.

“What’s up, dork?” was the first thing I heard.

He followed with a request that I meet him in his hometown of Capo Beach. Startled by his boldness, I asked why we couldn’t conduct the interview via telephone.

“It’ not like we have to film it or anything,” I explained.

“Yeah we do,” he replied.

“We do? Welllll, ummmm, I have some stuff going on tonight, but let me see if I can figure something out. I’ll hit you back.”

Of course I had absolutely nothing going on, but the voice of Christian Fletcher had well and truly spooked me. I called Chas, my motivational guru, for advice.

“Go!” he said. “This is great! You have to go.”

“Do you think he’ll like… do something?”

“Christian? No! He just likes to fuck with people. I don’t think I’ve ever even heard of him beating someone up. You’ll be fine. Plus, if he does do something, it’ll just make for a better story.”


I called Christian back to confirm our date. He texted the address of his local haunt, Pepi’s Sports Bar in Capo Beach.

A public place, I thought. That’s good! Safe!

I arrived first at Pepi’s. Three minutes early to be exact, but Christian wouldn’t show for another thirty. I spent that time searching for potential fire escapes should something go terribly wrong and sipping a Modelo for courage.

I also noticed that Andrew Doheny was in house. Colin Moran too. A flyer on the wall told me that Metal Neck’s Bangover II would be premiering tonight, along with a performance from a local band. I was starting to realize that Christian had systemically taken me out of my comfort zone and placed me in his own.

Then he walked in. Average height, deeply tanned skin and doting a beautifully cut suit and tie. This is how I found Christian Fletcher. I walked up and introduced myself, told him it was nice he’d dressed up for the occasion.

“What, this?” he asked. “I wear this when I go to the beach. I wear a suit and tie everywhere.”

He leaned in.

“So look man, I know you want to do this interview, but I really think I should be getting a cut of the profits. I mean, you’re getting paid for this, right?”

“I guess technically, but not specifically for this piece. I just get paid on a monthly basis, and it’s not very much.”

“So what? People in all other sports get paid to give interviews. Basketball, Football.. whatever!”

“But you do know the difference between those sports and surfing, right? Like… the money…”

“Yeah well, there’s money in the surfing industry too.”

“Not journalism,” I laughed.

“Yeah well not for athletes either. You know most of us have to work day jobs just to keep this gig going?”

“Do you have a day job?”

“Hell yeah I have a day job. Do you want to see what I do for a day job?”


Next I knew we were crossing the street toward a shady building with a motorcycle out front. Christian walked up the driveway and opened the door.

“Come on in,” he said, holding the door like a Southern gent.

Inside was an assemblage of Christian’s favorite things. There were his surfboards, hand-built motorcycles, a pool table made from “Belgian felt”, knives (the one he’s been bringing out to Trestles since the shark epidemic began), and family heirlooms.

“This is my work station,” he told me. “This is where I make my boards. My fluorescent dildos, as you call them.” Christian said this in jest, but I could tell he disliked my artistic rendering of his aquatic pleasure toys.

“It takes fuckin’ forever to make these things,” he explained. “There’s so many different components and layers to ‘em.”

Christian proceeded to show me a collection of his fluorescent dildos, thoroughly explaining the intricacies of design and theory that make his crafts the best in the world.

“My boards basically have everything that shapers will tell you is bad. People say you want a lot of foam under the chest, my boards have less than two inches. They say you don’t want a thick tail, my boards have thick ass tails. But there’s a method to the madness.”

“For example?”

“For example, my boards are ergonomically correct. The concave deck fits the curve of your body. Also, all the thickness is near the rails, not the center. This makes board extremely well-balanced. Then obviously we had to offset the concave deck by adding concave rails, because if the rail line is above your feet, water will spill all over your board. But the concave rails account for that. The sharp edge is the true rail. ”

When I asked if any pros were riding them, he responded with vigor.

“Yeah you know Droid has tried them, Ford Archbold, Dane Gudauskas actually bought one, and then I made one for Kelly. He’s the only person who got a free one, but then I took it back. I told him he better not copy my design in any of his boards, and then what do you know, I start seeing some of my ideas in the stuff he’s making.”

Christian’s proudest moment came when the room went dark. He proceeded to illuminate black lights so I could witness, through movie theater 3-D glasses, the true magic of his craft.

“You see that?” as he pointed out the rails. “Oh and that!” while he shoved a fin box in my face.

Every board Christian makes is airbrushed with glow-in-the-dark paint. The way he layers the designs creates an incredible effect when exposed to UV-A. Fin boxes pop, deck lams dive and colors jump in every direction. This was, very clearly, the coolest deck art I’d ever seen.

Once satisfied that I’d gained an appreciation for his craft, Christian decided we should head back to the bar. He tossed me a motorcycle helmet – army style with a flimsy cloth chin strap – and told me to hop on the back of his hog. It was only a block away, but riding bitch on Christian Fletcher’s bike felt pretty damn legit.

When we returned to the bar, Christian started introducing me to people. Some surfers, some business partners, some very, very large men who would turn out to be personalized bouncers.

“Oh shit! You’re that writer?” most of them asked. “Man, I really laid into you. I feel like you just don’t get it, man. But I’m glad you showed up tonight.”

Christian and I shared a couple beers and shots (despite that he’s allergic to alcohol — a “blessing”, as he sees it), then he left to chat with some friends. “After they finish the movie, we’ll do the full interview,” he assured me.

I spent the next hour sipping on water and watching The Bangover II. Eventually the film ended and Christian reappeared.

“You ready?” he asked.

“Yeah, where should we go?”

“What do you mean? We’re doing it right here,” he said, pointing to the center of the bar, where two seats and a microphone had been arranged.

Finally it dawned on me. Christian had planned this whole night around my arrival. Not the Metal Neck gig, that was already happening, but the time and place and attendance of his cronies had all been carefully coordinated. He was attempting to embarrass me. To deliver vengeance for the hurtful words I’d spread! And he would do it in front of the entire bar.

It seemed everyone there, besides me, knew this was going to happen. For another Surf’s Up reference, I was Chicken Joe, being obliviously captured by the natives. All this time I thought they were treating me with kindness and respect, they were actually seasoning my ego for a roast du Ciaramella!

Even an ex-Surfer Mag photog, who I think I’ve met before but can’t remember from where, was ready to roll with his tripod and camera on center stage. This moment was to be immortalized for posterity’s sake. No one takes on Christian Fletcher and lives to tell the tale.

At this point it was too late to back out. My only option was to face off with Christian Fletcher, presidential-debate-style, in the middle of his hometown bar, in front of all his friends.

While sitting in my chair, waiting for the fun to begin, Droid tossed a sarcastic dart across the room.

“Hey Mike, good luck!”

Thumbs up, dude!

Then Christian took his seat, and the camera phones started rolling. I hit record as well.

Game on, motherfucker.

Click here for Part 3!

Porn Star: “Shark bites not that bad!”

Lesbian porn star Molly Cavalli bitten in Florida also says, "It's a great experience!"

Has the recent spate of shark bites and alleged shark bites in Southern California given you pause? Are you less likely to paddle out today? Are you thinking about mounting your favorite board on the wall with the date RIP surfing 5/7/2017 and never touching the ocean again?

Lesbian porn star has Molly Cavalli has encouragement for you. “It’s not that bad!”

Shall we read her account in the Daily Mail?

Molly Cavalli, who was sporting a one piece swimsuit that left little to the imagination, was in good spirits as she was lowered into the waters in a protective cage, even doing a dance for the cameras.

However the excitement of swimming with the beasts off the Florida coast was soon replaced by screams of pain as a ten feet shark nipped the adult actress’ ankle.

Just seconds after being placed in the waters Molly can be heard letting out a yelp and then grabbing hold of her leg as the lemon shark struck.

She can then be seen rising above the waters grasping for breath and scrambling to get back on board as her own blood stains the sea around her.

As Molly is helped back onto the boat by cameramen a trickle of blood can be seen dripping across the crying model’s thigh.

After the whole business was over, stitches inserted etc. she took to Instagram and said:

“I want to thank my fans for their outpouring of support as I heal my foot following the shark bite. Luckily it only required 20 stitches. I’m fine. It’s not that bad. I had a great experience anyway and now I have a story to tell forever.”

It’s not that bad! A great experience! A story to tell forever!

Rip that surfboard off the wall and tattoo Molly Cavalli’s inspirational words on your upper thigh!

Should Jackie Free be on your team? Why not!

Fantasy: Brazil Is a Toss Up!

Italo wins our hearts

I’m fresh off a $40 Fantasy win at Bells, which means I’ll likely crash and burn in Brazil. In golf they call this a PBFU (post-birdie-fuck-up), in Fantasy Surfer it’s just the law of averages.

Brazil is especially difficult to call due to a number of unforeseeable circumstances. Will the comp run at Saquarema’s lefthand point or a nearby beachie? Will it be tubes, turns or punts that decide most heats? Will there be an attempted murder witnessed by formerly-sheltered CT competitors?

Your guesses are as good as mine. Here’s who you (probably) should(n’t) pick.

John John Florence: 12.5 mil
Would you believe that Brazil is the most fruitful CT stop in John’s career? No wins at Pipe, Teahupo’o, or Cloudbreak but two of ’em in Rio. Besides John’s historical success, it doesn’t make much sense to drop the world’s best surfer at his competitive peak. Maybe he’ll flail, but are you really willing to bet against him?

Adriano de Souza: 8.75 mil
As long as his board keeps treating me right, Adriano will hold a large chunk of my heart. Also, if they do end up at that left point, there’s almost no one I’d rather have blowing massive rooster tails out the back

Filipe Toledo: 8.5 mil
This guy has been on a heater, and in waves outside of his perceived range. Filipe flubbed one at Snapper, but I hardly see him doing the same here. His ability to drop a ten at any moment makes Fil a must-have in the short period South Atlantic swells.

Julian Wilson: 7.5 mil
Somehow, Brazil has been a major handcuff to one of the world’s most progressive surfers. Julian has suffered early round defeat after early round defeat in Rio, meaning he’s due for a breakout win. Right?

Mick Fanning: 4.5 mil
Having a weird year but still too cheap to pass up. One starts to wonder, if Mick doesn’t final in Brazil, will he be committed to the rest of the season? He’s already mentioned how his motivation isn’t quite there, but a big result in Saqua puts Mick right back in title talk.

Jack Freestone: 3.25
As a Fantasy player, I’ve found it almost pointless to care about your low-rank picks. Either you’ll get lucky and they’ll make a few heats, or probability will run its course and they’ll fall to a high seed. Jack got second here last year and I like his surfing, so he gets the nod.

Leonardo Fioravanti: 3 mil
Because he finally swung his hog at Bells and he dominated beach breaks on the QS last year. I’m still a BeLeover.

Jesse Mendes: 1.5 mil
Between Jesse and Nat at a left point or a beach break, I’m going Jesse all day. Nat may have a slight advantage on rights, but Jesse’s forehand and air game are far superior. And while there are no easy heats these days, I like his round one matchup against Jordy and Kerr on a long left.

Italo Ferreira: free!
The poor guy is still hurt, but that puts him in a perfect position to win this year’s Pussy Hound award. Instead of focusing on waves and nailing full-toters, Italo can invest his energy into chasing surgically-enhanced tail. Though he’ll be at a slight disadvantage, chase-wise, with that giant boot on his paw.

Not this one in particular, but you get the idea.

Magic: I Bought Adriano’s Surfboard!

Like Excalibur beneath my feet!

This week I visited the Channel Islands surfboard factory for a project with a Japanese surf mag. I was guided by Britt Merrick (Al’s son and lead shaper/designer at CI) and Blake Howard (CI marketing director) and was genuinely impressed by their production. I’d never seen a board factory so large, so efficient. But then I’ve also never been to Taiwan.

After touring the whole assembly line (machine, shaper, glasser, sander, QC), we arrived at the used board rack. The foamy graveyard consisted of three rows, the sum of which would cover the length a football field.

Sleds of Jordy, Dane, Lakey, Kanoa and every shredder under the sun could be recognized by their stickers and board art. But I’m a tiny fucker, so it was Adriano de Souza’s board that caught my eye.

A 5’8″ x 18 1/4″ x 2 3/16″ Rook 15 with a rounded pin. Plenty of rocker, moderately used, with an homage to Ricardo dos Santos, scribed by ADS himself, on the bottom. I snagged it for $250.

“The worst part about this purchase is having to remove all these stickers,” I told Blake.

“You should leave them on,” he replied. “At least for the first session. That way if you don’t like it, you can always sell it for a profit. He is the world champ.”

Shit. He was right.

And I could hardly bear the thought of paddling out on Adriano’s Formula-One racer. The snickers from the lineup would be unbearable. The pressure to perform like a million Hawaiian Dreams on my shoulders.

The next day I was supposed to go to Lowers but a guilt-trip from my lady (sharks!) led me to Blacks instead. A new south had filled in and the surf was as fun as it gets for a non-barreling beach break.

I carried the board, cloaked under a towel, to the middle of the beach. In a calculated effort I removed the towel and sprinted for the surf, successfully submerging the craft before anyone could witness the atrocity.

The paranoia was real, but my first wave masked every Mitsubishi-laden insecurity.

Instead of having to nurse it off the bottom, this board gripped the water in a way I had never experienced. My rail drove through the surface and brought me to the lip faster than anticipated. I check-snapped off the coping and set up for the money section.

Carrying as much speed as a head-high wave will allow, I threw all my weight off the incoming wedge and carved back to the pocket. Rather than catching an edge or getting stuck behind the foam, I was able to lean on my toes and float-climb the lip for a finishing maneuver.

Never had I felt so connected with, and in control of, a surfboard. There was no adjusting my surfing to suit the craft; the board simply followed my every direction. It was stuck to my feet.

A Magic Board.

And this got me thinking, maybe pros are actually riding better equipment. Maybe the shapes are more refined or the foam more carefully selected. Maybe it’s the lighter glassing?

All I know is, I felt like I was drawing Adriano-esque lines on the damn thing. His decades-long bottom turns and seamless carves finally made sense.

Have any of you had a similar experience? Ridden a pro’s stick and felt an immediate difference in ability and control? Maybe even inherited some of said pro’s powers?

I know it seems loony but I have no other explanation! It’s not like I got better at surfing overnight.

Shark strikes back: Attack in Los Angeles!

And just like that another southern California bite!

Remember when an angry mob pulled a baby white onto Huntington’s pier yesterday? Of course you do! I posted the story just minutes ago! Did the shark’s mama read, perhaps, and bite a nice girl in Pacific Palisades to the north?

Let’s now turn to KTLA!

Sophia Raab, 18, was paddling back to shore along Pacific Coast Highway and Sunset Boulevard about 2:30 p.m. Wednesday when she fell off board.

When Raab got back on her surf board, she described being in excruciating pain. She looked down at her leg and found a chunk of her thigh missing.

“I was standing up looking down at my leg and it was peeled open. I could see the inside of my leg,” she told KTLA. “It was the goriest sight I’ve seen in my entire life.”

“I have no idea how it happened,” she added.

With the help of other beachgoers, Raab managed to get back along PCH and into an ambulance. She was taken to a hospital, where she underwent surgery.

Raab suffered a laceration that was described as being 10 inches by 10 inches and 4 inches deep. Her orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Bert Mandelbaum, said the injury is consistent with a shark bite.

What is going on here? Are the inmates running the asylum? Is this armageddon?

Sophia Raab, smartly, changed her Instagram handle to @shark_bite_sophia. Now that is the sort of sharp marketing mind BeachGrit needs to lead us to The Inertia levels of fortune Chazz Michael Michael’s has promised.

Shark Bite Sophia? Are you there?