Tailgate wisdom!

Quiz: Does your surfing reflect your personality?

Is it true? Is your surfing an accurate reflection of who you are?

Yesterday, on the Instagram account @reportsfromhell, which is operated by BeachGrit’s Chas Smith, there appeared the following post.

How u Surf Is who u r. 


It’s a good question.

An absorbing aphorism revealed on the tailgate of a pick-up, not a little unlike, say, the apparitions of the Virgin Mary sixty years ago in Garabandal.

Think: Does your surfing reflect your true personality?

If you’re a little tight in the ass, wound up like hell, does your surfing naturally suffer? Do your turns lack a smooth elegance?

If you’re beautiful and free and ain’t a care in the world, is your surfing looser? Does it make you a throwaway air kinda guy?

If you’re meticulous, do you eat up every single section before safely tagging the end closeout?

If you take a moral view of everything, do you make a mental account of who’s catching what and y’get all worked up if someone bucks the natural order?

Or is the whole concept too damn confronting?

I’m a superficially happy guy masking a lifetime of despair and hopelessness, more sad sack than showman.

And I think it shows.

"As long as you can make it through a couple of rounds, you make a lot of money." says local surfer Rachel Presti (pictured).
"As long as you can make it through a couple of rounds, you make a lot of money." says local surfer Rachel Presti (pictured).

Florida Pro: Women to double men’s money!

It's a feel-good story!

Now if this ain’t a feel good story I don’t know what is. In the very second that businessmen, male politicians, actors, producers are getting felled by the Lincoln Continental-load for being improperly sexually aggressive/generally very rude, a brand-new surf contest in Florida is serving up more than double the prize money to the women over the men. 25k for the men. 55k for the women. The largest purse in U.S. history for a women’s event!

Oh I know that it’s a men’s 1500 and a women’s 6000 but still 55k ain’t nothing to sneeze at. And let’s read a little from Florida Today:

The Florida Pro Surf event will be unusual, in that the women’s prize money will be significantly higher than the men’s prize. The winner of the men’s competition will receive $4,000 to $5,000, with a total prize pool of $25,000.

Fifteen-year-old surfer Rachel Presti of Melbourne Beach says she’s excited about competing in the event.

“This is my home break,” Rachel said as she joined Hobgood and other surfers at Sebastian Inlet on Wednesday to film promotional videos for the event and to surf the waves. “It’s a good wave. I surf here almost every day. I think it’s great, because we’re having a huge competition here.”

Rachel, who has been surfing competitively since age 9, says she is looking forward to competing in the Florida Pro Surf event against some of the top competitors in women’s surfing.

“It pushes me to do better,” she said.

And, noting the unusually high prize purse for a women’s event, she added: “As long as you can make it through a couple of rounds, you make a lot of money.”

Do you want to know who is surfing in the men’s side? CJ Hobgood and Cory Lopez! Between that and women getting rich I think I want to go to the Florida Pro. I think it might be the best surf contest ever.

You ever see anything as pretty?

Watch: “Jack Robinson x Rabbits”

Luscious and high contrast!

Jack Robinson is the boy with the bouffant hairdo who, as one surf agent told me recently, was the last of the great speculative buys.

Do you remember three years ago when Billabong shovelled their last shekels at Jack to steal him away from Quiksilver, back when they were separate companies and not part of the same American hedge fund? Billabong’s Gordon Merchant described Jack as a “once-in-a-generation” talent and got the kid on a five-year deal.

The following Hawaiian winter Jack, then seventeen, beat Jamie O and Mason Ho to win the Pipeline trials. And it wasn’t small.

Anyway, even though Jack’s career trajectory hasn’t gone exactly to plan since  any sort of vision of his surfing features elegant, painterly lines.

In the (very) short below, we see Jack at Rabbits (is it okay to name Rabs now? Does Taj know) by the Western Australian-based filmer Azure Co.

Worth a little contemplation.

You liked? This ain’t bad either

Painstakingly constructed manifesto strapped to tree.

Angry Locals reveal “Mungrel” Law!

Are you a local? What makes you furious?

A small beach community on Australia’s east coast has taken a stand against outsiders with a heroically confrontational warning sign nailed, anonymously, onto a tree.

Sawtell, which is just south of Coffs Harbour and five hundred clicks north of Sydney, is a real pretty joint. Warm water. Agreeable weather. Gets good waves sometimes. It ain’t going to make your toes curl, but fun enough to belt along to.

And, like the rest of the north coast, the secret’s out. Escape Sydney. Buy a house cheap. Source a reputable supply of weed. Sit back. Inhale. An easy life.

Recently, a sign appeared offering advice to anyone who might consider themselves, maybe, and after twenty years, a local, and to those who get their kicks from stand-up paddle machines.

Let’s read Sawtell’s “Mungrel Law.”

  1. If you have moved to this , what was once a quiet coastal village after 1996, you are not a LOCAL. Show RESPECT and practise surfing ETIQUETTE. So we all get along.
  2. If you are teaching your kids to surf, great, but do it away from the IMPACT ZONE, to prevent any ACCIDENTS.
  3. If you SU, ride your craft away from crowds. Your craft is DANGEROUS and can cause SERIOUS INJURY.

I never know what to make of these sorts of pronouncements.

Oh the sentiment is fine enough, SUPS were designed by an evil genius and they’re dangerous and so forth, and anyone who has their roots in a town does deserve, I think, first bite on any waves.

Getting fussy about kids learning to surf? A little hysterical.

And I ain’t real big on the dramatic use of capital letters. It makes me think of a man in a frightening trance, all spooky-eyed, suddenly screaming.

Do you like these sorta things? These lines drawn in the sand?

Like this.

Teahupoo sign

Or this?


Or do they remind you of the notes that litter the walls in communal kitchens?

Slater: “AI curious about almond milk!”

Venice-adjacent website reveals!

It has been seven years since the Hawaiian legend Andy Irons left this mortal coil and it’s wild how fast time flies. It seems like just yesterday he was on the comeback trail and just two days ago that he was challenging the dominance of one Kelly Slater. Standing straight as an arrow in massive Teahupo’o pits. Hoisting world championship cuts over his handsome visage.

His story is equal measure beauty and tragedy and it is why most of the surf media remembers him every year on the day he died. BeachGrit did not yesterday because Derek and I were together and surfing. Stab did, asking both Kelly Slater and Mason Ho for some thoughts and let’s read Kelly’s.

We were at dinner [Gold Coast, 2008] and he was asking me and my girl about food and what we make. I told him we made almond milk, and he was baffled that I knew how to make it. It nearly didn’t compute with him. I was supposed to make him some but he never came by on that trip.

In Stab’s supple hands everything becomes high art and this is beat poetry. Here, let me play some jazz and then let’s read again.

We were at dinner [Gold Coast, 2008] and he was asking me and my girl about food and what we make.

I told him we made almond milk.

He was baffled that I knew how to make it.

It nearly didn’t compute with him.

I was supposed to make him some.

But he never came by on that trip.