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The current best surfer in the world is John John Florence. Can we all agree? Can even Brazil agree that it would have taken a few miracles and many nods plus winks from the judges in order for Gabriel Medina to surpass him? The 25-year-old just clinched his second world title and, with nine more, will tie Kelly Slater. The world is his oyster and it appears that he has chosen to cruise it.

That’s right. John John Florence is a the face, or rather backside 360, of the Celebrity Cruise Line. The perceptive David Lee Scales from SurfSplendor noticed this video and let’s watch it together then discuss.


I was sort of expecting to discuss norovirus outbreaks or something but did you see that? John John Florence completely stripped of any and all branding? No Hurley no Pyzel no… nothing. Completely nude.


How does that make you feel? Like you shouldn’t have looked? Like weird? I will say John John strips down the branding more than any other professionally sponsored surfer. I only used Hurley and Pyzel as the examples above because those are the only brands I see on his surfboard. Does he have any others? Is it good value to professionally sponsor a surfer without receiving branding?


I suppose as the rooms in which one has made love have come to resemble one another so sex becomes currency. Ergo, it is not difficult to envision the single permissive standard as a free market for sex, a species of primitive capitalism where the entrepreneur with the most skill and enterprise and sexual funds could reap the highest profit – the adoration of countless mates and mistresses in that ubiquitous bixsexual world where men and women are as interchangeable as coin or cash.

But what do you think?

John John? You are either very young and love the fact that one of your peers has a legitimate shot at beating Slater or you’re a middle-aged woman who still remembers the little towhead from Highwater and all those magazine features | Photo: @worldsurflols

Holiday repeat: What Your Favourite Surfer Says About You!

Do you cry at little things (Gabriel)? Do you like droopy brown teats (Alex Knost)?

Who knew your favourite surfer could reveal so much! Just as riding a Hypto-Krypto tells the world you wear Kanye West signature kicks as booties and riding a Firewire signals you are a stay-at-home dad with a bar fridge full of Pepsi Cola and a 1 TB hard-drive full of she-male porn, your choice of surfer determines your style of clothes, your style of living, even your moral framework.

But enough chatter! Prise the curtain open, maestro!

Kelly Slater: Let us get the obvious out of the way first. You’re at least 40, you’ve only surfer once or twice a year for the last ten years but you still tell everyone in your office that you’re a surfer, big time. You’re the kind of person that just doesn’t know when to quit because you’ve convinced yourself that you will somehow go out on top no matter how long you wait. You almost died of anticipation waiting for OuterKnown.

Gabriel Medina? You jerk a shaver violently over your body each morning, and each night, and trained beauticians arrange the curve in your brow bi-weekly. Sometimes little things make you cry.

Gabriel Medina: Who knew eyebrows and body hair could become such a fixation? You jerk a shaver violently over your body each morning, and each night, and trained beauticians arrange the curve in your brow bi-weekly. Sometimes little things make you cry.

Mick Fanning: You believe in honesty, in your surfing, in your relationships, in life. It’s a man, his dog, his jetski, and mateships sealed in beer, occasional cross-dressing and public nudity. You believe all men are equal but this hasn’t come easy nor at minimal cost. 

Alex Knost: You believe the seventies were a utopia of droopy hair, droopy brown tits wrapped in knit bikinis and tanker single-fins. You enjoy Peter Pan and like to re-enact the battles of the lost boys, pirates and Indians.

John John Florence: You are either very young and love the fact that one of your peers has a legitimate shot at beating Slater or you’re a middle-aged woman who still remembers the little towhead from Highwater and all those magazine features. There’s also the outlier possibility that you’re a creepy old dude and think that liking JJF will somehow lead to relations with Alex. Regardless, you’re the kind of person who likes fresh, new, things and buys into the idea that John John becoming a prodigy was simply a happy accident and not the maneuvering of a not-quite-so-laidback mother taking advantage of proximity to all that surfing knowledge.

Kolohe Andino: You’re all about the hype and the money. You are probably also a Yankees, Lakers and Real Madrid fan. Image is all that matters to you and to you image is strictly a function of how much money is on display at any given moment. You haven’t actually surfed in years, for fear of damaging your expensive hand-shaped board, by some famous shaper, and you wouldn’t be caught dead on a board you would be willing to damage. If you have kids, you are a total soccer Dad, screaming at them and the referees whenever possible. If you don’t have kids, your Dad was a soccer dad and despite talking to him twice a year you still refer to him as your “best friend”.

Dion Agius: You’re such an adorable  little hipster. All your music comes on vinyl and all your photos come from 1980’s Russian film cameras. You refuse to watch the WSL for being too corporate and you think your hero, Dion Agius, is a sellout for attending Surfer Poll, regardless of how awesome you think Xanax is. Even though he is your favorite you still consider yourself to be better dressed, better exposed to music, and in general more cultured. You claim to have been a fan of Dion before anyone else outside of France.

The Hobgoods: You’re a redneck, a bogan, a chigger. You come from a working-class background, from a working-class region of your country and you think of yourself as a good ol’ boy. You have simple tastes in beer, food, music, movies and life in general. You’re always happy, you can have fun anywhere, and you own a 4×4 vehicle that you actually take offroad. You’re polite, you always respect your elders and you have zero in common with Dion Agius’s fans.

Makuakai or Koa Rothman: At some point in the last year you really fucked up and said the wrong thing, within hearing of the wrong person, and you live on the North Shore. In order to hide what you said, or did, wrong, you coat yourself in the camouflage of being Makua, or Koa’s, biggest fan. You even have downloads of Makua’s music constantly blasting from whatever speakers are near you. Even if you’re just walking down Ke Nui you play the music through your shitty smartphone speakers. You used to be a Mick Fanning fan and probably own a Micktory shirt.

Jamie O’Brien: Who is JOB? Only the coolest freaking dude in the world, says you. You love to party and you love anything that gives you a rush of adrenaline and dopamine. You grew up with some hook that made people want to be around and so you’ve been used to crowds of people your entire life. You make friends easily and sometimes you take advantage of that by abusing those friends and making them do really stupid things to entertain yourself. You love Jamie for constantly pushing the boundaries of what is possible at Pipeline and can’t wait for him to switch from a boogie to a SUP to a hydrofoil to body surfing and back again all while pounding a Red Bull and operating a GoPro.

Dane Reynolds: You’re Californian, or at least you pretend and act like you are, and that means you’re laidback, you’re chill, and you’re super easy to get along with. If you’re married with kids then your wife is beautiful and your kids are great. If you’re not, you could be but you’re waiting for the right woman to come along. You’re extremely good at what you do but because you’re not flashy and in-your-face about it people sometimes forget just how good you really are. Whatever your field, you constantly push the boundaries of what is possible regardless of any personal changes that may have happened.

Sunny Garcia/Kala Alexander/Dustin Barca: You’re honestly a bigger fan of UFC than surfing these days, which is why you love guys who can charge on a wave or in an alley. You never actually enjoy yourself surfing because you’re too busy watching for any perceived slight that gives you a chance to try and point someone to shore so you get to hit someone. You spend a lot of time watching YouTube videos of surfer fights and even if you live somewhere like Oregon, Maine, British Columbia, Alaska, or anywhere that has completely un-crowded lineups, you still try and police visitors like you’re 1970’s era Da Hui.  You’re actually very unhappy and wish that people would stop thinking of you as nothing but a thug.

Editor’s note: This story was written by Michael Kocher, the only BeachGrit writer, so far, to’ve run a fake cancer scam and to die in a police shootout. 

Modern: Peter Schroff doubles down!

Our brave new world!

Do you love our modern political age as much as I do or do you love it more? I think it would be difficult to love it more, to be quite honest, because I love it a lot. Everything used to be so… boring. So… scripted. A politician would get caught saying/doing something frowned upon. He would deny it until it became untenable then he would plead for forgiveness then he would disappear.


In this climate, though, everything is twice as glorious. A politician will get caught saying/doing something frowned upon and immediately double down denying only that it is, in fact, wrong. Staring boldly into the camera. Refusing to disappear.

The  surfboard shaper and performance artist Peter Schroff is following this new model and let’s review. Two days ago he posted, on his Instagram, a self-portrait doing “yellow face” while mocking surfboard makers who import boards from China, Cambodia, etc.

There was a bit of frustrated disbelief amongst his followers as to the racially charged overtones but did Mr. Schroff tearfully apologize? No! He doubled down by posting this:

And writing:

Lookylike pimp’s hunch was absolutely correct…… there’s alot of busy body faulty politically correct folks here that love twistin pimp’s intended statements. Uno who you r, do you really want to kill the American $ ‘n make theirs stronger? SAVE DE SURFBOARD INDUSTRY IN AMERICA……. FYI this snapshot was shot years ago by pimp’s Japanese friend at the R-23 sushi bar downtown LA


Now. Do you feel that pimp’s intended statements were twisted? Does it make it ok because pimp has a Japanese friend? Are there any Japanese surfboards being imported to America? I must go outside to the snow now but will be pondering these and other questions as I slide.

How Peter Schroff imagines glassers are punished in south-east Asian surfboard factories.

Proud: “My board says Made in Cambodia!”

So happy to have exotic Asian surfboard!

Yesterday, hothead Peter Schroff hit a nadir with his anti-made-in-Asia surfboard posts on Instagram. Using pens and with his hair tied into a bun, Schroff fashioned his sixty-three-year-old face into a facsimile of the stereotypical oriental.

“Does our dollar ‘av dis face on it?” wrote Schroff.


“Fuck Asian imports.”

And, “Let’s keep our dignity in this battle for a Asian import free nation.”

And, “Ask our foundin fathers wud day think of chinese junk?”

Well, I’m a proud owner of a made-in-Cambodia surfboard and I’d like to put in my two cents worth.

Last year, while visiting California, I made my bi-annual visit to an advertiser to accept payment. It’s always a theatre of the absurd with this particular company, who cry poor and offer boards instead of money.

“Three thousand dollars? Are you trying to break us?” And so forth.

When I deliver the usual analogy that they wouldn’t accept surf trunks from a surf shop in payment for boards the finance man weeps about the twenty or thirty dollars it costs to wire the money to my Australian bank account.

As per tradition, I buy dinner at a crummy restaurant to cover the bank transfer fee, compromise a little on the boards, accept that he didn’t realise the amount was in US dollars and Australian dollars and leave with a promise of immediate payment of the shrivelled balance (although that comes a dozen emails and two months later).

Well, on that trip I came out of the deal owning a surfboard wrapped in carbon and valued, according to the sticker price, at almost one thousand dollars. I was surprised, although not offended, by the Made in Cambodia sticker just visible near the tail.

I know how labour costs cripple the biz model of surfboards, and making boards offshore is the same smart biz decision clothing companies made two generations ago, although companies like GSI do like to talk down the cheap labour part. 

Two dollars an hour instead of thirty-five? I’m sure even you retarded sons-a-bitches can do the maths.

All wetsuits are made in Taiwan. Do you care?

My Cambodian surfboard gets tossed under the house like the rest of ’em. Gets surfed, thrashed, fins roughly pulled out and looks, feels, rides like anything I’ve had made in the US or Australia.

What do we owe the surly homegrown bastards who made you wait six months for a custom? Who don’t pick up the phone? Who say your board is being sanded when the blank hasn’t even been taken out of the rafters and tossed through the machine?


Or everything?

Oh, momentarily, a year or three, being surrounded by fans etc is a thrill. But, quickly, it gets old. John John from a Surfer Poll night a few years back. | Photo: Justin Jay/@justinjayphoto

Holiday repeat: 10 things that suck about being a pro surfer!

Even the A-plus pussy thing gets old… 

If you’re a man who lives within any proximity of the beach, you’ve always wanted to be a pro surfer. Like, aha, yeah, sure you want to be an accountant or a representative for a pharmaceutical goods company.

Girls wanna be models of course (hence the pout-y selflies with peace signs and bent legs, hands on hips etc) but beach rats wanna be a pro surfer. It’s validation of your manhood and your superiority over your dopey pals.

But, face it, it didn’t happen or it ain’t gonna happen.

Maybe you’ll scoop a minor sponsor, here, there, maybe you’ll even get a few free boards, but when the World Surf League steals only 34 surfers from the planet’s great pool of surfers (millions!), you don’t have to be Stevie Hawkings to see those miserable odds.

Yet…and yet… the tour isn’t the dick-swinging time you might think it is.

1. The pussy thing gets old

By the time the surf prodigy is 16 he’s engaged MILFs in relatively straight congress, had a handful of threesomes (though mostly guy-guy-girl), has faced maybe a dozen winking anuses (female) and has seen every variety of tit, pussy and haunch god ever created. The average man banks a dozen fucks, twenty if he’s a smooth-talker, on average, in his lifetime. A surf prodigy will roll those numbers during one good long weekend at a junior series event. You want to know why those pro’s get married so young? Cause they realise that sex without love ain’t much more than an agreeable friction. (Although that epiphany will eventually dull.)

2. Want to kill the thing you love? Do it for a living. 

When you and I go for a surf we schralp around for an hour or so, talk to our pals, fall off on every air attempt, drop-in, get dropped-in on, do fins-first take-offs and have a general blast. Now, imagine, your entire career, your life, your finances, your emotional health and, in some cases, the welfare of your family, depends upon you nailing two sets in a heat and banging off 10 perfect turns. And when you get home the internet is full of couch-cowboys telling the world what a kook you are. Stressful!

3. It’s so serious!

One-time tour surfer Mitch Crews thought the qualifying series had set him up for the most sublime experience of his life. And yet, “I felt very awkward in the competition area because I’m really social and felt like I had to go through the charade of putting my headphones on and then staring at the camera all strong.” No one’s there to make pals. They’ve seen Kelly nail 11-titles, and Mick three, from serious.

4. Mostly, it ain’t flying biz

Travel once a year and what a thrill it is to paw at the airline magazines, rip things out of sealed plastic bags and drink wine from plastic cups while the world soars beneath you. Do it every week and it loses all of its sheen, and then some. If you’re top three, you can afford biz. But who’s top three!

5. Bores at bars

I see it around every contest. Some fan eating the ears of a pro, friendly at first, then increasingly belligerent as the pro politely (and they’re always polite) declines his offer of drinks, drugs (If the Gold Coast, meth, if Spain, coke, if Portugal, MDMA) or to kiss his girlfriend. Every pro needs a Johnny Gannon or a Kaiborg. But who can afford it?

6. The surf media

Can you imagine being called up or cornered every day by writers whom, by even the kindest measure, are borderline retarded?

7. There ain’t a lot of money in it

For Kelly, Joel, Mick, Taj, Gabriel… yes. For the back end, a hundred grand goes into the bank, a hundred-ten gets spent on travel. After five years you end up back in your country town trying to kick-start a surf school or schlepping oversized tees on the road.

8. There’s a chance you’ll be killed 

Ever since big-wave surfing went psycho a few years back, the chances of being snuffed out in a heat has increased to it now being… likely. Ten foot Teahupoo; eight-foot Pipe. Not a lot separates you from rock.

9. The weird dynamic with friends

Once you get famous people treat you differently. Friends treat you differently. They walk a little to the side or behind with a sudden deference. And why wouldn’t they? Fans will come up and step right into your conversations with your pal. Girls will elbow the non-famous friend out of the way. And they don’t say a thing! Weird! But not as weird or awkward as…

10. You pay for everything

Let’s say you make it. Big time. A contender but not really. A million Americano shekels a year. You’ve  got a couple of houses, a pretty car. But go out for dinner and the little leather wallet will be placed in front of you every single fucking time, either by staff or discreetly by head friend, to, like “fix up”. He’s rich! We’re not! is the unspoken transaction.