Just in: Smoking weed is fun!

And here's how you get some!

And how wild is it that we live at the beginning of the end of prohibition? Marijuana is on pace to be completely legal in most western countries over the next decade or so. In the U.S. more states than not have legalized medical usage and a good handful, California included, have voted in full recreational as well.

Yet, if one read only surf media, it would appear that marijuana is still the Great No No. A closeted and frowned upon vice of low-lifes and miscreants. Ain’t that even more wild? Surfing used to have a well-established counterculture bond with weed that extended deep into the 1980s. Maybe it was the 1990s economic boom that saw surf brands become publicly traded. I am not economically inclined so have no real understanding.

But the surf media? What a bunch of lily-livers! The Inertia, for example, regularly beats the 1950s drum of marijuana being bad for you. Stab does the odd story about its medicinal qualities or the even odder story where a writer partakes and interviews Herb Fletcher but all very… odd.

But why? But what the hell?

The world is basically ending and if you want to toast the good times like Jeff Spicoli of old then we’re here to help and especially if you live in greater San Diego. Tomorrow (August 24th) head into PLPCC near the airport, buy one gram of Hot Nife and get a half gram free.

You read that right! Free weed! All you need to do is go inside, say you heard about this on BeachGrit and don’t like strange moralist tirades in your surf media and then boom. There you’ll be!

PLPCC is only the finest, friendliest marijuana dispensary in maybe the world and Hot Nife is a new cannabis oil brand that gets it. That understands that, sure, people consume weed in order to ease aches and pains and headaches etc. but they also consume to have fun and get high!

Just click the gorgeous colors in the margins and you’ll be delivered to where you want to be. Don’t forget to bring your medical marijuana card and your ID. In January it’ll be a free-ish for all but until then…

Bon appetit!

Looks like the pool is getting fitted just west of Surfers. Who's going to be the first to find?

“Wavegarden will be fucking horrified!”

Greg Webber's long-awaited wavepool only six weeks away from breaking dirt!

Earlier today, on the generally very good and mercifully sober website, swellnet, it was reported that Greg Webber’s first wavepool was six weeks away from breaking dirt at a secret Gold Coast location.

(Phew, long sentence.)

“The structural and mechanical enginnering is already under way,” said Greg, “while the civil work, the excavation of the lagoon, begins in six weeks.”

The long-awaited pool would be three hundred metres long by one hundred and fifty metre wide and, said Greg, an American licensee, Ocean Sports Development, “have just signed an exclusive agreement with Sports Facilities Advisory (SFA) with roll out imminent across the country.”

Read the rest of that story here, although you’ll quickly realise I’ve bitten most of the meat off the bone.

I was very hurt that I didn’t get the exclusive to the story as I’ve known Greg for a very long time and have been, mostly, kind in my reporting. Every few days for the last six months I would send a text message that read, “Any news?” or “How’s the pool?”, sometimes with decorative emoji.

The first I knew of this story was an email from Greg that read, “Guess you saw the swellnet post. I’ve owed him priority for over two years.”


“I made a promise after he did the patent story between kelly and I.”

Heartbreaking, yes, but also heartwarming as loyalty is such a rare commodity.

Now let’s examine the new pool, closely. The difference, says Greg, between his and Kelly and Wavegarden is theres is a soliton pool, his is kelvin. 

(More about that in a subsequent post, when Greg completes lunch.)

And Greg’s will be better, he says, because it has a superior wave rate (a pool has to be commercial), a trough (“You don’t travel the world looking for flat-faced waves,” says Webber) and the ability for the wave to be… customised.

“If you can’t make ridiculous distortions it’s going to get boring. You just can’t provide an A, B and C model. Customising is critical. If you can make a wave go from half-a-metre to two-and-a-half metres in five seconds, that’s a ridiculous distortion. It doesn’t happen in nature. And if you can actually create bulges and lumps and backdoors that you can see coming in towards you, but you haven’t ridden that wave before, that degree of random is going accentuate the whole experience. Before my pool’s done no one will realise how vital it is to throw some shit at people so that you’re never aware of what’s going to happen next.”

Wavegarden, says Webber, will “end up being redundant. They’d be horrified at what Kelly did and and even more fucking horrified when I build my one. (But) only one is going to make money. My one. There’s only one design and it revolves around using the Kelvin wake. It allows us to do 500 waves an hour as a base rate. We can have a ride rate of 5000 rides per hour. That’s fucked up. That’s proper money.”

And let’s talk irony, briefly. All the huffing and puffing over Wavegarden in Perth and Melbourne and Sydney and not one dirtied spade.

Wouldn’t it be terrific if Greg, who has promised a pool for years, opens his doors first.

Yemen has hosted many assholes. Like the Ottomans, the Brits and this guy here running with camels near Hawf.
Yemen has hosted many assholes. Like the Ottomans, the Brits and this guy here running with camels near Hawf.

Yemen: Only the good die young!

Chapter 2: A history of dubious veracity.

(I am writing a series about Yemen because what is currently happening there is terrible beyond. My inaction disgusts me and so I am going to introduce you to to the country because… the place, people, culture all deserve to be saved. We’ll get into the meat so soon but first very brief historical jaunt. If history ain’t your jam though skip it!)


Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Yemen has a history as deep as and substantial as almost anywhere on earth but seeing this is a surf gossip n scandal website let’s just enter during the 11th century B.C. when the Sabaeans, a clan covering the territory of modern day Sana’a and Marib, consolidated power and became like Da Hui of old. If you are a Christian, Jew or Muslim you’ll certainly have heard of the Queen of Sheba (Saba). According to the Bible (1 Kings 10), she traveled from Yemen to Jerusalem to test King Solomon, was overwhelmed by his fabulousness and gave him lots of gold and spices.

The account is challenged by modern archeology but modern archeologists are total killjoys.

Marib, in particular, has fantastic Sabaean ruins and a violently proud population who, before the current Ugly War, were famous for kidnapping Yemeni troops and ransoming them back to the government. I’ve been in two perfectly tense social bombs in Marib, one of which is mentioned in the PEN award nominated Welcome to Paradise, Now Go to Hell. (Motorcycles and the stench of panic and bang bang death.)

The region is also mentioned in the Qur’an and even though that book was never nominated for a PEN award, Mohammed specifically praises Yemenis (likely those living in Marib) for their true belief. The various tribes around Marib, Sana’a and even into the Hadramawt did accept Islam rocket fast, while Mohammed was still alive, and the various tribal rulers built great mosques etc. in their growing towns.

Later the true believers split down what we call Sunni/Shia fault lines with 55% of the country Team Sunni and 45% Team Shia and 5% Team Angie and a surprising 33% Team Brad. The Houthi rebels, in the north of the country and the ones that Saudi Arabia is ostensibly trying to rout, are Zaidi (Shia). The Saudis are Sunni. The Saudis are also Team Angie.


The middle ages saw Yemen pass through a grab bag of dynasties. The Ottoman Empire snatched what they could in the 1500s in order to preserve trade routes to India and pilgrimage routes up to Mecca and Medina. They were semi-benevolent, if not corpulent, rulers for a few hundred years with the Yemeni tribes constantly poking, prodding, kidnapping and killing.

The British decided they wanted the southern port of Aden in 1839 and bombed its ruler away and included it alongside India and Hong Kong in their empire, mollifying the surrounding tribes by telling them they wouldn’t expand outside of Aden as long as no one signed treaties with unpalatable countries like Germany.

Then in the early 1900s an Imam by the name of Yahya hamid ed-Din decided it was time for a “Greater Yemen” and sought to unite the tribes under his leadership. He scratched and clawed much territory from the crumbling Ottomans and almost pulled Aden from the British.

Yahya died in 1962. Arab Nationalism was in full swing and split Yemen between north and south during a six-year civil war. When it was over, the north identified with Egypt and was called the Yemen Arab Republic. The south identified with the Soviet Union and was called The People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen.

And there they all sat until 1990 when the two were re-unified just in time to accidentally side with Saddam Hussein during the first Gulf War and get massively fucked by Saudi Arabia. Tens of thousands of Yemenis were ejected from Saudi Arabia, funds dried up and so did any international anything.

It was the Saudi’s decision to let U.S. military forces into its territory that enraged Osama Bin Laden most. He had just returned from Afghanistan, a famous mujahedeen, who had smashed the Soviet Union under heel with help from my uncle’s Stinger Missiles. And he thought a foreign power had no right bunking in the country that held the two holist sites in Islam, Mecca and Medina. Osama let his rage be known and was banished from the kingdom so he moved to Sudan.

Because so would you if you have ever been to Khartoum.

Enter what later became known as Al-Qaeda. Though not officially a super group yet, a loose collection of likeminded individuals scattered around the middle east began to plot together and carry out various shenanigans together and one autumn day in 2000 bombed the USS Cole in Aden’s harbor together.

The attack left 17 sailors dead and was a massive blow to the notion of untouchability that pervaded the United States after its routing of Saddam Hussein. Following an exhaustive study of the event, the Navy changed protocols for docking and refueling in foreign ports.

The Cole incident received much more attention one short year later when the World Trade Center was brought low. Critics were furious that neither the Clinton nor George W. Bush administrations didn’t bomb the hell out of Yemen as a consequence. They claimed that the lack of military action emboldened Osama Bin Laden to think bigger.

And one even shorter year after that my best friend in the world were looking at Yemen’s coastline.


These studs fought against "the man." Who do we got?
These studs fought against "the man." Who do we got?

Stratify: The surfer’s natural enemy!

Without a foil we will wither on the vine!

Yesterday’s story Rumour: TV Salesman to buy SurfStitch was as enjoyable as it was informative. In case you were too busy to see it featured a very rich, Australian man who thought the failing online surfwear retailer/Stab magazine publisher was worth a flip.

Before we go on, quickly, does it annoy you that when I write a rumor it is a “rumor” and when Derek writes a rumor it is a “rumour?” Should we settle on one and stay consistent or are these little nuances part of BeachGrit’s charm?

But let’s head back to the very rich Australian man. In the picture he looked… like a person who likes computers etc. Our Nik Karol wrote:

This is classic Revenge of the Nerds hey? I hope he fucking hates surfers and snaps up SurfStich so he can show those fuckwits the door. Double the shares from seven cents to 14 then flip it to the Chinese. Poetry.

And it made me chuckle but also wonder who, in today’s social stratification, is the surfer’s natural enemy? I think we are all closer to nerds these days, see Kenny Powers, and don’t think they are necessarily our enemy. But who? It is important to have, I think, for our shared sense of self worth.

So is our enemy:

a) the po po

b) jocks

c) dweebs

d) poor people

e) greasers

f) inner city youth

g) anitfa

h) posers

i) poseurs

j) education

k) other

Watch: A Fresh Slice of Filipe Toledo!

"There's steaming coming out of you, bro!"

Did I tell you about the time I went on a Mexican holiday with Filipe Toledo? And what a wonderful boy he was – how he cheered sunsets, how he never used his higher ranking in the hierarchy to steal the front seat of the pickup for the long drive to the beach or to claim the biggest bed and so on?

Oh I did?

Well, just as fabulous on that vacay was his filmer Bruno Baroni. He never complained about a damn thing, was always helping, and, at night, was very good at improvised bongo.

Of course we all know what happened at Jeffreys Bay this year. No one even came close to touching Filipe at the classic right. And those two oops? And the way he tagged the thing to the beach, even after he knew it was a ten?

Here, in this eleven-minute cut by Bruno Baroni, we follow Filipe as he tests various boards and, ultimately, rides to glory.