The great Andy Irons wearing his iconic Rising Sun boardshort.
The great Andy Irons wearing his iconic Rising Sun boardshort.

Innovative: Japan utilizing “comprehensive town-building strategies centered on ‘Surfonomics!'”

An earthly paradise!

I don’t know if you have had the pleasure of visiting Japan but it just may well be the greatest nation on earth. The people are polite and kind, the fashion is without parallel, the food is out of this world and, as if things could possibly get better any better, coastal towns are being built around a new strategy called “Surfonomics.”

What is Surfonomics?

A great question and we must turn to Japan’s Kyodo News for answers.

(The town of Ichinomiya) has created a “surf street” along the beach dotted with surf shops and restaurants. An information center that opened in April 2018 rents surfboards and bicycles for people to carry their gear.

Hyuga in Miyazaki Prefecture on the southwestern main island of Kyushu has pursued an initiative dubbed “Relax Surf Town Hyuga” since December 2016.

Boasting a warm climate, the city has one of the nation’s most popular surfing spots. In 2017, the latest year for which figures were available, it attracted more than 300,000 surfers and beachgoers, up from 200,000 in 2012.

It regularly releases promotional videos on a special website and uploads images of the Hyuga coastline on social media. It is working hard to attract surfing events as it looks to capitalize on surfing’s Olympic debut.

Makinohara in Shizuoka Prefecture, central Japan, lost out to Ichinomiya in the bid to be selected as the Olympic surfing venue, but it was chosen to host pre-games training for the U.S. and other surfing teams.

The city on the Pacific coast organizes surfing lessons for elementary school students to familiarize people with the sport from an early age.

Another spot known for the quality of its waves is Niijima Island. Part of the Izu Islands, Niijima takes about two and a half hours to reach from Tokyo by high-speed jet ferry or 35 minutes by air.

Niijima used to host international surfing competitions and is trying to boost the remote island’s economy by wooing back surfers.

“The beautiful ocean is the pride of the island,” an official said. “We hope more people will come and enjoy surfing.”

Do you ever wish Imperial Japan won World War II?


Love and sexing in France.

Comment live, Quiksilver Pro, Hossegor, Day Two!

Join the idle class in a hothouse of surfer opinion…

Who can regret the sins of the flesh? In the sand dunes behind Les Culs Nuls, site of this year’s Quiksilver Pro, the windless summer nights reverberate to the noise of indiscretion and reckless escapades.

To deny these experiences, as we know, is a denial of the soul.

It’s autumn in Hossegor now, the offshores have kicked, the holidaymakers have been stuffed back into their classrooms and office cubicles and the dunes are silent.

And, here, Saturday morning, October five, my birthday as it happens, The Quiksilver Pro France turns back on.

Today, blood on the sand as four surfers are removed from the event in the prosaically named Elimination Round, formally round two.

Watch, make a noise.

(Click. here for the live stream.)


Quiksilver Pro France Elimination Round (Round 2) Matchups:
HEAT 1: Kolohe Andino (USA) vs. Jadson Andre (BRA) vs. Marco Mignot (FRA)
HEAT 2: Michel Bourez (FRA) vs. Sebastian Zietz (HAW) vs. Marc Lacomare (FRA)
HEAT 3: Deivid Silva (BRA) vs. Caio Ibelli (BRA) vs. Soli Bailey (AUS)
HEAT 4: Wade Carmichael (AUS) vs. Conner Coffin (USA) vs. Ricardo Christie (NZL)

Quiksilver Pro France Seeding Round (Round 1) Results:
HEAT 1: Griffin Colapinto (USA) 12.50 DEF. Kanoa Igarashi (JPN) 11.90, Soli Bailey (AUS) 8.07
HEAT 2: Italo Ferreira (BRA) 11.94 DEF. Frederico Morais (PRT) 10.10, Caio Ibelli (BRA) 9.60
HEAT 3: Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA) 14.40 DEF. Yago Dora (BRA) 14.33, Kolohe Andino (USA) 14.00
HEAT 4: Jorgann Couzinet (FRA) 12.67 DEF. Jordy Smith (ZAF) 12.66, Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 9.26
HEAT 5: Filipe Toledo (BRA) 12.63 DEF. Joan Duru (FRA) 10.60, Marc Lacomare (FRA) 9.74
HEAT 6: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 14.40 DEF. Michael Rodrigues (BRA) 11.87, Marco Mignot (FRA) 11.04
HEAT 7: Owen Wright (AUS) 15.10 DEF. Willian Cardoso (BRA) 13.34, Ricardo Christie (NZL) 7.94
HEAT 8: Julian Wilson (AUS) 11.44 DEF. Adrian Buchan (AUS) 9.57, Jadson Andre (BRA) 9.47
HEAT 9: Kelly Slater (USA) 13.84 DEF. Jesse Mendes (BRA) 11.67, Conner Coffin (USA) 9.94
HEAT 10: Seth Moniz (HAW) 12.24 DEF. Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 10.50, Wade Carmichael (AUS) 10.13
HEAT 11: Peterson Crisanto (BRA) 13.84 DEF. Ryan Callinan (AUS) 11.67, Deivid Silva (BRA) 11.67
HEAT 12: Jack Freestone (AUS) 11.77 DEF. Jeremy Flores (FRA) 9.10, Michel Bourez (FRA) 8.90


Opinion: “What the hell, boys? Why do we need to worship our heroes so mindlessly?”

We're surfers for pity's sake!

This damned Miki Dora thing has caught me off guard, to be honest. I thought sporting hero worship was the exclusive realm of stick-n-ball sports. Of weirdo American football lovers, European soccer freaks and Aussie Rules manics though I count myself among the latter.

Go Pies!

But Miki Dora? Mickolsossos Dora? You are willing to throw your own living life on the man who surfed Malibu exceptionally but nowhere else’s tombstone?


What is the goal?

What is the aim?

He surfed Malibu exceptionally yes, wrote a bunch of bad checks was racist, anti-Semetic and shot the derelict surfer narrative over the moon. I would theoretically like him for the derelict surfer bit except he was a sue-hound too. A perpetually aggrieved whiner who sued and sued and sued his way through middle age. Who leaned on the courts and the law and “The Man” to pressure others to give him his “fair shake.”

I fucking hate “fair shakes.”

I fucking hate lawsuits.

I fucking hate men who call the cops when a conversation, or fight, would settle it.

So worship Miki Dora but worship him clear-eyed and allow surfing to be a place where truth and honesty reign.

Yeah Miki was a racist, anti-Semetic suer. Yeah Andy was a drug fiend. Yeah Jeff Hakman co-founded Quiksilver over a doily of cocaine. Yeah yeah yeah fucking yeah surfers are the worst.

Why do we even try and protect the dead feelings of the derelict assholes amongst us?

I’ll beg you right now. When I’m done and dusted I hope I’m worthy of the remaining of you shitting on me all day and single every day.


My dying wish.

Talk about how I was an Oregonian nobody. Write about how I couldn’t get barreled at Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch without getting hurt. Scream about my shit shit pumping down the line at two-foot George’s in my once-agrarian Cardiff by the Sea this morning, if you even remember me at all because…


Let’s just be us. Let’s just be surfers. It’s honestly all we have but worth more than anything else.


Tell me what you want on your own damed tombstone.

What is your memorial?


Tragedy: “Leading federal meteorologist” drowns in Outer Banks surf after issuing warning.

Not ironic.

Rip-currents can be real sons of bitches. Growing upon Oregon’s wild and wooly coast, I was no stranger to their clammy grasp. I lost a very sweet Nev potato chip with much rocker, once, as I clung to the barnacle’d rocks while the the ocean tried to steal me. The current was a raging river hurtling to Japan and I snagged the rock at the last second but my New potato chip was not so lucky and the leash plug popped right out and I watched it bob up and down, violently, until it was lost over the horizon.

Very sad.

But not as sad as the tragic story of a leading federal meteorologist who drowned in rough Outer Banks, North Carolina surf after his agency issued a warning about rip-currents in the area. Not to be glib, but if Alanis Morissette was still writing her hit single ‘Ironic’ I feel she would include this incident even though none of the incidents in the song were actually ironic as, like this, they were all just bad luck.

But enough about Alanis Morissette and let us turn to NBC News for more.

The director of a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration division for predicting weather died Monday in North Carolina while swimming in dangerous conditions that federal forecasters had warned about.

William Lapenta, head of the NOAA‘s National Centers for Environmental Prediction, drowned Monday while swimming at Pelican Way beach in the town of Duck, according to a statement from the town’s director of public information, Christian Legner.

An off-duty ocean rescue supervisor spotted Lapenta, 58, struggling in the ocean, and lifeguards responded within minutes to pull the scientist from the water, the statement said. He was unresponsive.

Emergency responders tried to save Lapenta, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

“Monday’s surf conditions and a rip current in the area were likely a factor” in Lapenta’s drowning, the town’s statement said.

And we all know what to do when caught in rips, don’t we? Swim parallel to the beach etc. but I suppose it’s good to refresh our memories. Like shuffling feet during stingray season. Speaking of, I went for a cute little surf this morning. It was small but very fun and the water was crystal clear. After a little runner, I paddled back out, sat on my board and peered through that crystal clear. There were no less than ten stingrays swimming below me.

My feet did not touch the sand after that.

The Master at work.
The Master at work.

Kelly Slater throws impressive shade: “I tweaked my back a little bit and it distracted me to not think so much!”

Dropping hammers.

Kelly Slater’s dominant performance in the Quiksilver Pro France’s seeding round was the talk of the town from Hossegor all the way to my once-pastoral Cardiff by the Sea. Longtom put it best in his end-of-day wrap. “How can a nearly fifty-year old be the best guy in the water in a three-foot beachbreak?”

And it’s true.

Kelly is surrounded by wizards less than half his age. Surrounded by a whole next generation of professional surfers who came out of the womb pitching air reverses, who were built for this, as they say. And yet there the 11 time World Champion was, all fifty years of him, grabbing one of the day’s highest heat totals with seeming ease.

What was his secret? He shared during the post-heat interview with Barton Lynch and I’ll provide the transcript right here.

I actually had a little sciatica from a deep massage I got. I kinda tweaked my back a little bit actually and uhhhh I think it distracted me enough to not think so much. I just went out and surfed and had fun.

A hammer from the God of Shade.

Oh it may seem innocuous but nothing Kelly Slater does is innocuous and would you like to know which other professional surfer was struggling with a “tweaked back” and who clearly let it affect his performance?

That’s right.

Filipe Toledo.

And when Filipe hears word of Kelly’s sly remark, that a tweaked back leads to improved, bold performances, how do you think it will affect him?

I truly hope the two meet up in the quarterfinals. The Great Back Off of 2019 will be one for the record books.