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Surf Journalism: BBC reporter gives lesson!

Chas Smith

by Chas Smith

On how to deliver the news on certain stories...

Let’s just take a few minutes to get real. Surfing is a very worthwhile thing to do but not all “surfing” is “surfing.” You know what I’m saying? Like, riding a SUP is not surfing. And wakeboarding is not surfing. And hydrofoiling across great stretches of ocean is not surfing. And riding an egg shape is not surfing unless it is foam. And dogs surfing is not surfing.

Things that aren’t surfing may still be fun but they are also not very worthwhile.

A BBC reporter understood this and delivered a story about surfing dogs with the appropriate amount of enthusiasm. Let’s watch.

Now, I bring this up because Surfer fawned over a recent clip of Gerry Lopez bodysurfing in a river. Let us watch then read.

Gerry Lopez has always been a trailblazer. When Pipeline got crowded, he bolted for Indonesia. When that got inudated with surfers, he headed for Oregon to snowboard. When river surfing got popular, he started bodysurfing in rivers.

Wait, what? Well, Lopez hasn’t stopped river surfing by any means. But he did just post a video on Instagram of him bodysurfing with a handplane in a river near his home of Bend, Oregon.

Lopez is no stranger to river surfing and displaying the possibilities of fun within them. A regular in the Bend, Oregon river surfing scene, Lopez recently told our own Senior Editor Jon Perino that river waves are perfect set-ups for bodysurfing.

So Lopez did just that. And as the timeless style master he is, Lopez did so while wearing a hat and sunglasses. Leave it to Lopez to introduce the world to river bodysurfing.

I understand that Gerry Lopez has earned the right to do whatever he wishes but large Germans have been doing this sort of thing for millennia. And calling Lopez’s hat/sunglass combo “timeless style” is sacrilegious.

We must be careful and deliver droll BBC style reports on news items that fail to clear our admittedly low bar lest we all become like The Inertia, which wrote:

Gerry Lopez knows water. He’s figured out a way to keep himself young, and it involves water, whether it’s in liquid form or frozen. He also knows surfing, and knows that surfing is all about having fun. Surfing doesn’t require a board–all it requires is a wave and a willingness to slide on it.

Fucking The Inertia