Spanish boy seen ripping Cadiz in open mockery of Surf Europe.
Spanish boy seen ripping Cadiz in open mockery of Surf Europe.

Alleged: Surf Europe hates Spain!

Does Cornwall's favorite surf magazine really have beef with La Furia Roja?

“He who controls Surf Europe controls the world” (George Orwell, 1984).

As telescreen smartphone data strips nation-states of their power, multinationals like Amazon and Surf Europe Magazine are laughing all the way to the bank.

Or are they?

Evidence has surfaced, showing that despite what Surf Europe Mag has said of Spain’s ‘Costa de la Luz’, the place (occasionally) pumps.

Which begs the question: what’s in it for them?

The love-child of Honolua Bay and Lower Trestles, perhaps?

Let’s delve into this shit.

Like most European surf destinations, throughout summer Cadiz is as crook as Ando’s back leg. But come October the beach breaks are firing, and if you stick around long enough to need a 4/3 (and some form of gainful employment) you’ll be able to sample the point-breaks that enable tourist-hungry surf shops and cheesy postcard writers alike to call it “Cadizfornia”.

However, it seems Surf Europe (and The Inertia!) are—uncharacteristically—keeping this all under wraps.

“The Kingdom of Spain is denied an appreciable west coast by its neighbour Portugal. Thus coastal Spain is either the north-facing Biscay coast in the north, or the Med coasts of the east and south, or the surf battered lava strewn coasts of the Canary Islands, down near the tropics off NW Africa” (Surf Europe Mag).

Not even a mention of Cadizfornia. And all this from an article lamenting the lack of surf in the less terminally depressing parts of Spain:

“While most of the rest of the world thinks of Spain as a hot place where flamenco dancers and bull fighters drink sangria in ancient plazas flanked by ancient churches built in the Moorish style, for most surfers, huddled in campers vans watching the sets break in a tidal grey sea between the action of the windscreen wipers, the north coast reality is a much different affair.”

But sunny ol’ Cadiz is about as Spanish as you can get! From the week-long ferias of Jerez and Seville—where you can drink endless rebujitos and dance yourself into a blissful oblivion that restless guitars and wailing flamenco lets you construe as something life-enriching—to La Noche de San Juan, a fiesta that sees all the beaches in the region alight with millions of misplaced deliveries of Moroccan marijuana (and bonfires).

So what’s Surf Europe’s deal?

While it’s true that Portugal casts a swell shadow, when a big NW swell comes rolling outta the Atlantic—maxing out Hossegor, pulverising San Sebastian and rendering Mundaka and Coxos questionable for anyone that doesn’t have cojones of steel, Gaditanos (Cadizfornians) are suddenly the object of envy of their Superbock drinking, consistent-swell receiving neighbours.

And as the rest of the world book one-way tickets to Morocco, the staff at Surf Europe are off to the land of la siesta, to score sparsely-populated mid-arvo barrels.

Illuminati! Doublethink! Conspiracy!

If anyone ever tells you that “paddling out at a lacklustre yet accommodating beachie” in the north of Spain is the best you can ever hope for, then it’s time to go Alex Jones on their ass.

Let’s be honest: the best you can ever hope for from a ‘cultural’ surf trip is to catch the staff of Surf Europe sipping sangria and laughing evilly cliff-side at a pumping right-hander.


Koa Rothman: “Just happy I’m not worse!”

Eddie Rothman's middle son almost decapitated by a board ditcher!

Surfline is a fine online publication and today its esteemed editor, Marcus Sanders, posted a piece today about Koa Rothman, Eddie’s middle son, getting his head taken off by what appears to be a kook in the southern hemisphere somewhere.

Marcus writes, “Thing is, it’s kind of amazing this is the first serious injury of the year. Rothman and his Shadow Company brethren Nathan Florence, Luke Davis and Billy Kemper (and others) have been on an absolute tube-bender so far this spring/summer.”

I was, first, very surprised to know that Koa Rothman, Nathan Florence, Luke Davis and Billy Kemper had a squad called Shadow Company. Further digging into Surfline‘s archive describes them thusly.

There are the SOLDIERS IN UNIFORM — the GUYS IN JERSEYS, walking in lockstep, following the rules and the contests — and then there are the SELECT FEW guys behind the guys.

Very chic. Like Noa Deane minus an alcohol induced “Fuck the WSL” and now you know about them too. Like the A-Team minus Howling Mad Murdock.

But, more to the point, the kook and Koa Rothman’s near death experience. You can watch the video here and it is deeply disturbing. A clearly not very savvy surfer ditching his board, unnecessarily (doesn’t it totally look like he would have made it over that shoulder?), which proceeds to smash Koa in the head. The young man tells Marcus, “I don’t who he was. I remember he was saying ‘sorry,’ but he had a helmet and booties, so I didn’t really see his face. I’m not mad, I’m just happy I’m not worse. Like blind or dead or something.”

Marcus then asks, “Any lessons from this?” to which Koa answers, “I think there’s so much that everyone can learn,” Rothman says. “You could tell he wasn’t comfortable. And when you’re not comfortable surfing somewhere, you’re probably not only endangering yourself, but absolutely everyone. I’m just surprised it doesn’t happen more often.”

Oh if you are like me then your blood will boil when you watch. Is there any sort of good mob justice surfers can deliver when this sort of thing happens? An act which will scare board ditchers from the water forevermore?

Should board ditchers have to surf with scarlet BDs hanging from their necks? I think this would be appropriate but what do you think?

Surfing makes us all cry at one time or another!
Surfing makes us all cry at one time or another!

Ouch: Man loses $100,000 while surfing!

And what is the most expensive thing surfing has taken from you?

Not just any “man” but hot rapper Slim Jxmmi and not just any $100,000 but a customized, diamond encrusted $100,000 chain and not just any surfing but crowd surfing.

Let’s read about it on a rap website!

Slim Jxmmi of Rae Sremmurd might go down in the Guinness Book of World Records for taking the most expensive crowd surf ever. Yesterday (July 3), the recent Billboard award winners were performing in Paris, when Slim decided to turn up and catch a wave in the crowd. Unfortunately, his newly purchased, diamond-flooded Slim Jxmmi chain was lost during the process.

In footage that has surfaced from the event, you can see the group pleading with fans to return the jewelry. “Who got the chain? We bringing you on tour right now, bring the chain up here,” Swae Lee tries to bargain with whoever pocketed the piece.

“Damn, I shouldn’t have jumped in there like that,” Slim admits.

After no one fesses up. Swae ups the ante by offering 5,000 euros to whoever brings the bling to the stage. Then, he quickly adds to the pot, offering 50,000 euros, to no avail. Slim reportedly filed a police compliant about the lost chain.

Surprisingly, Slim doesn’t seem to upset by the missing link. “Yes I hit a 100k crowd surf,” he posted on Twitter earlier today (July 4). When questioned by a fan about how he really felt about the whole situation, he responded, “indifferent.”

Oh I know this story is only connected to our kind of surfing by the thinnest strand but it did make me wonder… what is the most you’ve ever lost surfing? Like, we’ve all lost a surfboard, right? And that is expensive but not that expensive.

Have any of you lost a very expensive watch? Car keys? The love of a beautiful woman?

What is the most expensive thing surfing has taken from you?

Watch: Nic Von Rupp’s Pursuit of Happiness!

Let's watch Nick squeal with glee!

Nic Von Rupp is living my dream.

He’s handsome, he’s a talented surfer and, as a result of those attributes, he’s paid to chase incredible waves across the globe.

Which makes me wonder, is Nic happy?

I’ve never met the guy, so this is more of a large scale sociological question than a psychological evaluation, but it’s interesting how people with “everything going for them” are often quite miserable. (See: Dane Reynolds in Chapter 11.)

I’ve spent this year doing a fair bit of globetrotting. Hitting bucket-list destinations with the general goal of achieving, I suppose, some sense of universal contentedness. And while my experiences have been amazing, far exceeding the alternatives of sitting behind a desk or hammering nails, I can’t say my overall happiness has increased.

Petty issues continue to bug me, my dog still incites daily stress, and the weight of an unclear occupational future constantly affects my mood. Try as I might to surf the negatives away, at the end of the day, I’m still me. Despite my incredibly charmed life, I’m not necessarily any happier than someone “less privileged” than myself.

Of course socioeconomic status makes a difference in this discussion, but maybe not to the extent you believe.

For some people, happiness seems an inherent aspect of their personality. They were born that way. For others, happiness is earned through commitment to an optimistic outlook, spiritual enlightenment, or any other number of self-help practices.

For others, happiness seems genuinely unattainable. It could be a genetic thing or a confluence of negative events that leads these folks to eternal pessimism, but in any case the result is a miserable existence.

The interesting thing is that, on either side of the draw, you’ll find humans ranging from piss-poor paraplegics to multi-billionaire playboys. Beauty queens to butterfaces. Geniuses to nitwits.

It’s not what job we have, where we’ve travelled, or how beautiful we are that makes us happy. It’s just… us.

I think, on a 1-10 scale, I fall around the six-point-five mark for general happiness (just above the anti-depressive threshold).

What about you, readers? Are you generally fulfilled?

And Nic? Do all those tubes have a lasting positive effect, or are you just as susceptible to bullshit as the rest of us?

Pool Toy Daredevils Taunt Whites at Dana Point!

Drone footage of thrillseekers being towed next to Great Whites… 

I used to love San Clemente. The people are warm, you can buy a world-class surfboard fresh out of the factory, the waves are often very good and, if you want to surf by yourself, why just stroll on down to Riviera and stalk yourself something empty.

Just as fabulous was the lack of any predatory sea life in this part of the Pacific Ocean.

Sharks? A faded memory.

As you know, that’s all changed with the recent migration to San Clemente and its surrounds of packs of Great White sharks.

Orange County junior lifeguards now practise their skills in eight-inches of water. 

Sightings are so common I know one prominent surfer who hasn’t surfed there in six months, partly through injury partly because he ain’t thrilled by big fish.

Last Sunday, Barry Curtis, a keen pilot of drones, captured this footage of a boat driver towing pals on inflatable toys next to what is presumed to be a couple of juvenile Great Whites (I mean, aren’t they all these days?).

As reported by CBS-LA,

Curtis says the lifeguard ran to alert a supervisor and showed him what he filmed.

“He saw that and that’s when he got on his radio and said I’m gonna call the shore boat and tell them to leave the area,” Curtis said.

But there wasn’t time. Seconds later he says another lifeguard ran into the water with his paddle board to warn them.

“They had just towed by both of the ones I had been filming and they had no idea there were sharks in the water,” Curtis said.

In his drone footage you can see the lifeguard reach the boat and everyone pile into the dingy. Curtis’ camera system has GPS coordinates and records date, time and exact location showing the sharks were 900 feet away from the swimmers.

“They’ve done tests where they’re dragging stuff behind boats and Great Whites like the element of surprise and they come out of the water and go for towed devices,” Curtis says. “These people were towing three people behind the boat, my hope and prayer was that I wasn’t going to witness a tragedy.”

Watch here!