Comes in mid-heat and blows kisses to adoring followers or shit-talking haters…
Another day, another dollar, another chance to huck away a workday with the side screen open. The U.S. Open marched onward on my desk in real time on Tuesday, providing exactly four hours of Round Two heats in the same dismal surf that every other West Coast denizen found at their doorstep.
But if opening day at HB is always an existential crisis of sorts, day two embraced the dueling Kierkegaardian concepts of the absurd and authenticity (nevermind Chas’s present traipsing about with the Danes) to put on the best parking lot Formula One derby in surf (great visual, @Walter Pepekay)
- No leash, no problem. The Brazzas were all about riding dirty on Tuesday, led by the likes of Italo, Jadson and an on-fire Peterson Crisanto, each of whom advanced with ease (more on them shortly). The timeless adage goes that surfing without a leash is like sex without a condom. Ya hear it from celibate old misanthropes, ya hear it from horny groms who haven’t ever verifiably laid pipe, and ya absolutely never hear it from female surfers. But the old proverb means one thing: it feels good to eliminate drag but there’s the risk of letting your rocket ship freefall into the danger zone. Of the guys competing sans leash, most of ‘em lost their boards at some point and had to chase them down, just like us commoners. In one instance, this showed the whole wide world that…
- Italo is the most and best Anti-Depressive. Dude rocked a Neymaresque bleach-blonde look and manicured his facial hair into a throwback pattern rife with ‘80s cocaine flair. After taking a commanding lead, he lost his board into the shorebreak, only to sprint after it and spend the next two minutes blowing kisses to adoring followers or shit-talking haters — it wasn’t clear which —up on the pier. He was in typical Italian Ferrari form, catching fifteen waves and dominating a heat whose final tallies made it look closer than it was. The ensuing post-heat interview found the commentators waxing nostalgic and philosophical when…
- Peter Mel repeatedly referenced Italo’s locks as “frosted tips” and then tsk-tsked the poor guy for not knowing what “frosted tips” are. Now, since 1993 skate fashion is long gone, I’m pretty sure that frosted tips imply using your ding-a-ling to do something dirty with ice cream or a birthday cake, not what you term a $500 haircut inspired by La Liga’s top South American talent. Mel’s likely correct assumption that Italo didn’t understand the reference to his bleached locks sent old Petey down a rabbit hole, lamenting his monolingualism and confessing that he never tried to learn another language during his career. Honeysuckle Turpel placated ol’ Pete by telling him it’s never too late to start learning as the awkward exchange dragged on and on without a wave in sight.
- Of Mice and Men. HB is typical midget madness. Hiroto Ohara. Keanu Asing. Kei Kobayashi. Adriano de Souza. Little dudes don’t bat an eyelash at little waves and you just expect ‘em to keep the crazy legs going with ease. That’s why it was refreshing to see Zeke Lau — the only current AFL or NFL prospect in pro surf — hammer a 7-something for a left-then-right that was apparently scored on the 1989 Hang Loose pro criteria for distance traveled. Fellow big boys Joan Duru and Mihimana Braye handily advanced in their heats, Duru hitting the high mark for the day with a 15.83. And while I’m all about the fellow tall-guy steez and struggle, Lau’s 7.33 for four safe turns and Duru’s 8.00 for two mortal backside reos were solidly overcooked. Both guys won and won big, but dem wasn’t the scores.
- Speaking of scores, in his heat with Lau, Noe Mar McGonagle did the unthinkable and logged a perfect score. A zero. Yup. 0.00. Not a tenth of a point. Didn’t take off on a wave. Let’s get Warshaw in here to enlighten us, but methinks this is both uncommon and also pretty fuckin’ hard to do, unless you’re imitating 2015 Filipe in Polynesia.
- Speaking of Filipe… Everybody was on about how Filipe’s not here and how’s gifting 10000 QS points to the competition like a generous overlord showering grain on the peasants. While overstated, it was reminiscent of the way people talked about Kelly for missing a comp or skipping a heat a decade or two back. Filipe’s certainly an otherworldy talent in the small stuff and this line of commentary shows that 1. Toledo’s progressive routine is so sharp that he’s worthy of getting big gun hype like the all-time greats and 2. Even the people employed to speak publicly by the WSL aren’t using the world title as the measuring stick for raw shit-hot ability and entertainment value. Wildcard implication is that shit is rigged and Filipe’s already been assured the trophy at year’s end. I kinda hope so if he games up in Tahiti.
- If anybody looked as sharp as Filipe, it was Peterson Crisanto in Heat 15. Check out the huge layback for a 7.00 (21:22 heat clock) and the nutso tail-high slob air reverse that didn’t even make it into his scoreline [3:00ish on heat clock]. Kid even chucked a big shove-it grab [15:20 on heat clock] with every intention of riding away for a score. If anybody brought some sass and unpredictability to the grovel, it was Crisanto, who I’d imagine we’ll be seeing a lot more of later this week.
Vans US Open of Surfing Men’s QS Round 2 Results:
Heat 9: Deivid Silva (BRA) 14.23, Victor Bernardo (BRA) 10.20, Joh Azuchi (JPN) 10.04, Frederico Morais (PRT) 9.60
Heat 10: Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 10.50, Jorgann Couzinet (FRA) 9.27, Mitch Crews (AUS) 3.50, Noe Mar McGonagle (CRI) 0.00
Heat 11: Miguel Pupo (BRA) 15.66, Cam Richards (USA) 8.66, Rafael Teixeira (BRA) 7.77, Ian Gouveia (BRA) 4.90
Heat 12: Bino Lopes (BRA) 14.40, Thiago Camarao (BRA) 11.43, Finn McGill (HAW) 11.27, Luel Felipe (BRA) 9.16
Heat 13: Italo Ferreira (BRA) 13.94, Beyrick De Vries (ZAF) 13.10, Hiroto Ohhara (JPN) 12.40, Flavio Nakagima (JPN) 10.94
Heat 14: Joan Duru (FRA) 15.83, Jadson Andre (BRA) 12.80, Hiroto Arai (JPN) 11.57, Gony Zubizarreta (ESP) 11.03
Heat 15: Peterson Crisanto (BRA) 15.77, Tanner Hendrickson (HAW) 10.90, Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 9.30, Kiron Jabour (HAW) 8.23
Heat 16: Mihimana Braye (PYF) 14.13, Charly Martin (FRA) 11.83, Jeremy Flores (FRA) 11.03, Ricardo Christie (NZL) 10.20
Upcoming Vans US Open of Surfing Men’s QS Round 2 Matchups:
Heat 17: Michael Rodrigues (BRA), Seth Moniz (HAW), Soli Bailey (AUS), Cody Young (HAW)
Heat 18: Connor O’Leary (AUS), Jack Freestone (AUS), Mitch Coleborn (AUS), Matt Banting (AUS)
Heat 19: Patrick Gudauskas (USA), Ethan Ewing (AUS), Lucas Silveira (BRA), Brett Simpson (USA)
Heat 20: Conner Coffin (USA), Maxime Huscenot (FRA), Cooper Chapman (AUS), Parker Coffin (USA)
Heat 21: Kanoa Igarashi (JPN), Nat Young (USA), Aritz Aranburu (ESP), TImothee Bisso (FRA)
Heat 22: Tomas Hermes (BRA), Alejo Muniz (BRA), Ian Crane (USA), Marcos Correa (BRA)
Heat 23: Michael February (ZAF), Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA), Benji Brand (HAW), Hizunome Bettero (BRA)
Heat 24: Wade Carmichael (AUS), Evan Geiselman (USA), Davey Cathels (AUS), Kyuss King (AUS)