At the beginning of the trailer for the film a voice says: “Surfing is not relegated to the shoreline. It’s not just a breaking wave over reef. It’s anything that brings you into that moment when you’re completely there and truly alive.” Is going to the strip club and getting bottle service and many lap dances surfing? What about chicken fighting?

Is a lap dance (with bottle service) surfing?

New Kai Lenny film says maybe yes!

Kai Lenny’s new film Paradigm Lost drops onto Red Bull’s website on October 2, less than one week away, and are you excited? Did you feast your eyes on the trailer all 4K and Red Bully? It certainly is richly colored and the full range of Kai’s many talents are on display.

He is uniquely gifted no doubt.

And while I very much hope the film is a success let us use it, for one quick moment, to discuss the idea of relativism because who don’t like an 8th grade philosophy discussion first thing in the morning?

At the beginning of the trailer for the film a voice says:

“Surfing is not relegated to the shoreline. It’s not just a breaking wave over reef. It’s anything that brings you into that moment when you’re completely there and truly alive.”

And is this true for our current time? Oh I know that “surfing” has been used for sometime in conjunction with sleeping on people’s couches, being on the internet, etc. but do our dictionaries now really read:

Surfing: Anything that brings you into that moment when you’re completely there and truly alive?

Is going to the strip club and getting bottle service and many lap dances surfing?

What about chicken fighting?

Do you think Donald J. Trump would be angry at this new turn if he caught wind of it? Do you think he would take to his red Bully Pulpit and decry the ambiguity of language? Would he scream that we’re all too politically correct to call “surfing” an activity done on waves while riding a foam and fiberglass surfboard that has either three or four fins and a pointy nose?

Has our culture slipped far down the hole to hell that cultural warriors have been warning about for 50 years?

I’ll answer for Jerry Falwell Jr.


Jordy Smith
Jordy Smith, according to Kolohe Andino (the most diaphanous of all San Clemente's nymphets), is goofy, humble and innocent!

Watch: “The boy with the guinea pig face!”

World #1 Jordy Smith looses short film! Scrutinise here!

I can imagine many of Jordy Smith’s peers would like to take a running kick at his rump. For, even at a canter, running at, let’s say fifty percent, the six-foot-three South African with the guinea pig face has swept easily into the world title lead.

This ten-minute short from Jordy’s masters at O’Neill, note the lingering logo shots on wetsuit leg, the affixing of wetsuit closures in macro focus and so on, reveals his freesurfing at his new home in San  Clemente, and in South Africa, where he was born, as well as his pair of tens at Jeffrey’s Bay.

Although well-watched already, the vision of his old friend Chad Du Toit hollering “Tens all day long!” and his pappy Graham looking as happy as a fat boy with his own ice-cream mixer, still excites.

I think this movie, which is actually called Beyond the Tour, is a transaction you should complete.

For although there are no surprises, there are very few surfers in the world with the native talent of Jordy Smith.

And did you know he turns thirty next year?

How the years fly…


Revealed: Jordy Smith gets manicures!

What is your position on male pampering?

Stab’s Stab in the Dark feature is a very exciting event, don’t you think so? The concept is simple. Eleven shapers shape anonymously for one professional surfer who then rides the boards and chooses his favorite and that shaper wins… applause. And if the surfer accidentally chooses a different shaper than the one he normally rides then the surfer wins… shitty boards for the next year.

This year’s event was shot in Indonesia and the surfer was supposed to be a secret but highly paid sleuths guessed it was one Jordy Smith from South Africa. Current world number 1.

I, anyhow, read this morning’s piece and looked at the pictures and one thing stood out to me above all others.

Jordy Smith definitely gets manicures.

Look at those nail beds, look at the uniformity of trim, look at the glisten on the surface. Most certainly buffed by loving Vietnamese hands.

And what is your position on male manicures? The only I’ve ever had were from my four-year-old daughter so don’t really know if they are amazing or not but, I’ll admit, generally look down on men with shiny nails unless they are rappers or ladies’ shoes salesmen.

Am I wrong to look down? Should I begin to get?

Extravagant: Surf with your chef!

A top-tier experience you have to see to believe!

I often read about things that wealthy people do and think “Hmmmm.” Like they get massages and their golf bags Fedexed by their secretaries and stuff. And I think “If I wasn’t a man of the people would I do these things?” The answer is usually no. I don’t like massages because my arm pops out of socket and Michael Ciaramella used to be my secretary but went to work for Stab and so even if I wanted to Fedex my golf bag somewhere, which I don’t because I don’t have one, I no longer have someone who can do for me.

Being the people is basically a full time job and it is difficult.

Sometimes though, I read things that wealthy people do and think, “I would pay good, hard-earned money not to do that.” Like surfing with the man who just prepared my breakfast. Let us read about this extravagance in the Los Angeles Times.

Go surfing with the chef at Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa in Carlsbad, Calif. The resort offers a three-day outing that takes guests from the kitchen to the beach as Pierre Albaladejo, the hotel’s executive chef, shares his two biggest passions: cooking and surfing.

The program, called Surfing With the Chef, begins with a morning in the kitchen with Albaladejo, who’s from the village of Dax in southwestern France. The chef will prepare a personalized breakfast before giving you surf lessons at a Carlsbad beach.

The day concludes with dinner prepared by the chef and served toes-in-the-sand-style on the beach.

The next day, participants visit San Clemente to tour legendary surfer Greg Noll’s Surfboard Workshop, where they’ll collaborate with designers on a customized board. Noll’s boards, new and vintage, are considered the best around.

The cost is $3,500 per person, including a two-night stay, surf lessons with Albaladejo and your own Noll Surfboard to take home.

I’m sure Greg Noll surfboards are very fine but I would pay $300 not to do any of this. What about you? How much would you pay to not do this? And do you think they will offer this service at Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch when it opens to the “public?”

Will they keep the ranch theme and serve t-bone steak and bourbon mashed taters?

Yemen: The most perfect wave ever!

Chapter 8: Or how Al-Qaeda smashes Kelly Slater.

(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. Catch up, if you wish, on the links right here… (Prologue, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7)

And so we left the mountains and its Al-Qaeda in order to return to the coastline and its unexplored potential. And its Al-Qaeda too. It took half a day to wind from Ataq down to Bir Ali. I remember watching the countryside pass by the open window. The homes engineered throughout the centuries to keep men away from women. Towers that hid secret stairways and doorways. Goats out front chewing scrub. Bower Horse sold in random side road kiosk.

Bir Ali was the first place on the map that looked like it would have surf. By “looked” I don’t mean a careful bathymetrical plumbing or any accounting of swell direction. No. I mean it was the first place up the coast from Aden where there was any variation in the coastline on our giant foldable map. Bays and spits etc. Coastal variation, to my mostly Oregonian mind, meant surf. When the land stuck out like a tongue or formed a cove then waves would appear.

We arrived into the wall of sweltering coastal humidity with my anticipation at an all time high. Bir Ali. It sounded good, sounded exotic, and would also look good on the page next to my feathering barrel. Bir Ali. Barrel Ali.

Yet there was nothing. Not even ankle slappers. We drove up and down the coast, into the bays, out on the spits. We climbed a large hill that might have been the buried remnants of an ancient fort and peered to the northeast and nothing and peered to the southwest and nothing. Major Ghamdan entertained himself by shooting his Kalashnikov at two young men on the beach. I remember them rushing away and Ghamdan’s laugh.


We rented a boat from a regal looking fisherman and he took us to the places we couldn’t see and nothing. I was almost devastated. If nothing in Bir Ali and waist high Aden was our best find how angry would Sam George be? Son of a bitch. He would be angry.

The heat. The heat and the dust. And depression began to set in. We had been on the road for maybe two weeks at this point and had two and a half months to go. Two and a half months for waist high Aden. Middle eastern travel, especially when the roads turn to dust and the heat is inescapable and Arab music videos can’t be found challenges even the stoutest disposition. Did you ever watch the film Jarhead? I am not generally a Jake Gyllenhaal fan but he captured its essence perfectly in that movie. Perfectly. Maybe it is the 5000 extra years of history bearing down. Maybe it is the lack of alcohol. Maybe it is the way the sun hits the dust then hits the soul. All I know is when depression hits in the middle east it hits. And hits hard.

I went to bed that night in some hot room depressed and woke up the next morning depressed. J. and N. wanted to explore further. I wanted to leave and continue toward the next town, Mukallah and must have bitched to the point of forcing the issue because we left Barrel Ali in our rearview and we left its semi-combed over potential.

Depressed. I remember feeling depressed then, staring out the window at the flat coastline as it passed by. We curved inland for a minute, ate lunch, probably bought qat, then back to the coastline.

And waves.


They were unrideable, messy, slamming into small rock cliffs but waves. Waves. Magic. Waves. We were all craning our necks, driving stupidly slow, holding our breaths and then rounded one more corner. 10 kilometers outside Mukallah there was a wave breaking that had a left and a right.

And fuck.

We pulled over immediately, ripped the coffin from the Landcruiser’s roof, pulled boards out and trunks on and stepped down huge rocks into the water. Waves.

We paddled shoulder to shoulder not knowing how deep it was or anything else. The water was thick and murky. And warm. We made it outside. Sat. And then a wave stood up. I paddled, caught, dropped in, popped up and ecstasy. Pure unbridled ecstasy.

Photographic evidence shows I was wearing a long-sleeved rashguard and that the wave was generously head high but it was a wave. A proper wave. And we surfed that thing for five hours that day, until the sun set all the way. I couldn’t believe it at the time and the emotions of that day have been so branded onto my heart that it is impossible to write about it objectively.

It was the best wave in the entire world. A right and a left. Head high and ridiculously fun. Uncrowded because we were the first people to ever surf it. It had gone unridden for 5000 years. A wave. An honest to goodness wave dead smack in the middle of Yemen. I was so in love that I begged to name it after my wife, the one I am thankfully divorced from today and hate. That wave is still the highlight of my surfing life.

That wave is probably why I hate Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch so much. His inland atrocity is the opposite of adventure. It is guarantee. And it is in my ex-wife’s backyard. Fuck them both. Long live uncertainty. Long adventure.

Long live Yemen.