Brings honor back to a long line of Gogganses!
So there I was at 11:30 am walking into the Orange County Convention Center south concourse ready for a day of Surf Expo. I think it was the south concourse though may be wrong. Orlando lives for convention. It lives for convention and waterslide parks but there I was.
It is the first true surf trade show I have ever done and there was much to see and much to do. Jon Pyzel has a fabulous booth and I chatted with him. Matt Biolos came over from his fabulous booth and we all chatted together about the best bars up the Waimea Valley on Oahu’s North Shore.
I found a bar, which is more difficult than it should seem, and ordered a few vodka sodas then did more rounds. Hurley, Otis sunglasses where I caught up with New Jersey’s other favorite surfer Tommy Ihnken, Von Zipper where Rhode Island legend Sid Abruzzi and GT shared the most wonderful stories and then I had to visit the restroom and badly.
That’s when I saw Ashton Goggans, Stab magazine’s editor, wearing a yellow stocking cap and a lanyard around his neck.
You may recall that I leapt across a reclaimed wood coffee table in Ashton’s direction, once, during the taping of a podcast and he called the police on me.
I thought I’d have a little fun so did an old-school World Wrestling Federation elbow tap, like Ric Flair used to do before sticking my hand out for a shake while saying, “Hello, Ashton Goggans.”
He was not pleased. Not pleased at all and said, “I’m not shaking your hand. I’m not shaking your fucking hand…” whilst getting very close to my face.
His face happened to be covered with a hypnotic sort of fuzz. An almost shag carpet of fuzz and he was very close so I reached up to feel it. It was soft, like it had been conditioned but he still was not pleased, nor should he have been, I suppose.
He said something like, “You and your fucking sunglasses.”
I had been wearing a pair of vintage Ray Ban sunglasses all day even though we were indoors because I don’t like fluorescent lighting but also, if I’m going to be honest, because I like the general vibe of dubious next door neighbor.
I don’t recall seeing it coming but next thing I knew… WHAM-O! My vintage Ray Bans had been smashed off my face by the heel of a hand that I imagine was supposed to be a fist. A hand heel fist right into my jaw.
I gathered myself and tried to straighten my hair but he held my hands at my sides like we were dancing a lady dance in 18th century England. It was a nice punch, I think, and well-deserved. Imagine the amount of emotional duress that poor man has had to endure since he last called the cops. Imagine the bubbling fount of rage from me bringing up weekly, if not daily, that he called the cops and tried to press charges for a coffee table leap.
He did what he should have done and I continued to the restroom, once he loosed my hands, where I proceeded to use it and fix my vintage Ray Bans. Thankfully the lens popped right back in.
The day ended moments after that and I retreated to the vast estate where I am staying with Matt Warshaw and David Lee Scales. We toasted the marvelous day. The fun booths and fun surf friends over our pizza dinner. I proposed a separate toast to Ashton Goggans. He had done right and he had done well vindicating himself and bringing honor back to what I imagine is a long line of proud Gogganses.
I’ll admit, though, I’m waiting for a midnight call from the Orlando police department. I hope that a page has been turned but one can never be entirely certain.