Terror: Largest ever recorded “man-eating” Great White stalking southern California coast!

"He was in attack mode. He thought we were prey."

And did you see the Jason Statham, Rainn Wilson vehicle The Meg? I watched the first thirty or so minutes on a flight to Copenhagen. From what I gathered scientists were doing sciencey things in a state of the art oceanographic research center when they stumbled upon a 75-foot shark thought to be extinct. I switched over to the Elle Fanning masterpiece Teen Spirit which brought me to tears and didn’t return to The Meg so don’t know how it ended but fear I may find out in real life for it was revealed just today that “one of the largest sharks ever recorded in the area” is terrorizing southern California. Eating kayaks and other horrifically uncouth behaviors.

Our very own M.E.G.

Man-Eating Great (White)* and these ill-mannered beasts used to know better. They used to congregate in South Africa and northern California leaving our sun-drenched, star-soaked paradise alone but no longer. The Great White apocalypse is fully upon us and we must turn to San Diego’s NBC affiliate for the very latest.

Two San Diego men are thanking their lucky kayaks for taking the brunt of a great white shark bite near Catalina Island over the weekend.

Danny McDaniel and Jon Chambers can call two large shark teeth souvenirs, or maybe even good luck charms, considering the shark they once belonged to.

The two experienced scuba divers were taking a break from their diving trip, coordinated through La Jolla-based company Power Scuba, to kayak to Ship Rock near Catalina Island when Daniel felt a strong push.

“I look back and I see this giant, actually just a snout was on the boat as he was chomping down on the kayak,” said McDaniel.

“He was in attack mode. He thought we were prey,” said Chambers. “It was petrifying and amazing at the same time.”

Once they realized they both were OK, they waited for a few minutes to make sure the shark was gone before starting their 25 minute paddle back to Catalina Island.

“I said, ‘Jon I got a tooth.’ He goes, ‘Yeah, is there another one?’ It was a good experience that I would never want to do again, but it was a good experience,” said McDaniel.

Chambers and McDaniel said experts at Scripps Institution of Oceanography estimated the shark was around 19 feet long based on the size of the two teeth. It could be one of the largest ever recorded in the area.

19-feet long. That is two-plus Shaquille O’Neals one standing on the other’s shoulders. Four Jason Stathams who claims to be 5’10 but we all know is 5’8.

19-feet long. How did this beast grow so huge? How many men has he already eaten? How many men can he eat at the same time?

These are questions we must find answers to and I think it is time for us to start our own non-profit research and education center. We can call it Surfers Against Man-Eaters or S.A.M.E. and carry out important duties like telling all kayakers and stand-up paddleboarders to get out of the ocean because there is 19-feet of hell coming their way and beach clean-ups.

Can I count on your participation?

*Man-Eating Great (White) can also be written M.E.G. White. Like Meg White of the White Stripes and her erstwhile bandmate, Jack White, just played Surf Ranch. A conspiracy? I feel it coming…


Science: Studies find World Surf League’s “Wall of Positive Noise” leads to depression and possible death!

"The tyranny of prescriptive joy."

I have, unfortunately, not watched one minute of this year’s Quiksilver Pro France. The time difference between California and France’s western front is unwieldy and I haven’t mustered the necessary internal fortitude. I thought this lack of professional surf watching was going to make me sad and maybe sick but, oddly, the opposite has occurred. I wake up each morning healthier and heartier than the night before. Happier. There’s an undeniable spring in my step.

I didn’t correlate the two, not watching surfing and my improved state of being, but I should have for a new series of studies declare that the “tyranny of prescriptive joy” including, but not limited to the World Surf League’s “Wall of Positive Noise™” is actually depressing and possibly killing us.

And we must turn to Forge, a publication about personal development, for more on what is being called “toxic positivity.”

But that relentless focus on positivity — what Kate Bowler, a Duke Divinity School professor and former cancer patient, described in her memoir Everything Happens for a Reason as “the tyranny of prescriptive joy” — isn’t just ineffective. Research has shown that it’s actually harmful.

One 2012 study found that encouraging people to push away their negative emotions often has the opposite effect, making them feel bad about feeling bad, in addition to whatever else they were already going through. A 2005 study found that relentlessly focusing on the positive during times of stress — what the authors call “avoidance coping” — increased the risk of depressive symptoms later on. And there are plenty of other examples out there pointing to the same conclusion: Forced positivity often leaves us worse off.

It can eat away at relationships, too. “Seeking out people who bring ‘positive vibes only’ will ensure shallow bonds,” says Cleveland-based therapist Karly Hoffman King, whose work focuses on trauma. Instead, the relationship becomes a performance of happiness. Difficult conversations, moments of vulnerability — all off the table. “People are left to deal with their feelings alone instead of seeking support,” says King. “Offering up toxic positivity like ‘look on the bright side’ or ‘it could be worse!’ often just makes the other person feel invalidated, creating a wedge between the two of you.”

In her work counseling cancer patients, Los Angeles-based health psychologist Stephanie Davidson often encounters family members who maintain a facade of positivity so extreme that the patient feels they can’t discuss their fear or the losses they’re experiencing. “Feelings that we don’t like are not the enemy, and there’s no research that says acknowledging those feelings will make medical conditions worse,” Davidson says. “However, there is research that says that those who are not able to get support from those around them tend to do worse.”

On and on and on the piece goes, detailing the horrors of life behind the Wall of Positive Noise. The pain and suffering. The illness and death and it got me thinking. Now, I know I’ve been all down on “suing” and “lawsuits” lately but what if we brought a class action against Santa Monica? I think, if forced to listen to one heat featuring Joe Turpel and the ’89 World Champ Martin Potter any judge or jury would agree that we have been poisoned.

Did you read about the billions of dollars Purdue Pharma, maker of OxyContin, is coughing up in settlements?

I imagine we’d be looking at something like that.

So?

Are you in?


Come and get a piece of the fun.

Comment live, Day Four, Quiksilver Pro, Hossegor!

Come and get your piece of the fun…

Shortly, and in waves that may prove to be an improvement on yesterday’s bad tempered, indecipherable closeouts, although Courts C and Johanne Defay found inviting morsels, we’ll be gifted the money end of the contest.

Round four. Eight heats (I checked).

I choose, Jeremy, Ryan, Marc, Julian, Gabriel, Seth, Kolohe and Italo. Betting agencies in Australia have locked out multi-bets thereby eliminating the possibility of a million-dollar payout.

And did you know that Jordy Smith, Sally Fitzgibbons and Stephanie Gilmore have all successfully negotiated the Olympic selection process and have qualified for Tokyo 2020?

Many excitements, as our Japanese friends say.

But, first, today, Hossegor, France.

Buckle up, dress down.

Watch here. 

Quiksilver Pro France Round of 16 (Round 4) Match-Ups:
HEAT 1: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Jeremy Flores (FRA)
HEAT 2: Ezekiel Lau (HAW) vs. Ryan Callinan (AUS)
HEAT 3: Marc Lacomare (FRA) vs. Wade Carmichael (AUS)
HEAT 4: Julian Wilson (AUS) vs. Jack Freestone (AUS)
HEAT 5: Gabriel Medina (BRA) vs. Adrian Buchan (AUS)
HEAT 6: Seth Moniz (HAW) vs. Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA)
HEAT 7: Kolohe Andino (USA) vs. Yago Dora (BRA)
HEAT 8: Michel Bourez (FRA) vs. Italo Ferreira (BRA)


Insidious purveyors of the haole shaka, Chas Smith, Ez Logan.

Rumour: WSL owns BeachGrit; SUP champion and Oprah Winfrey confidant Erik “E-Lo” Logan master puppeteer!

News don't come for free…

France is popping. The early spring sun is flashing its tanline on Australia’s east coast. America hasn’t been overthrown by a pro-Iran/Shark/Dora troika.

Yet. The world turns.

So, I apologise in advance for doing this. But there’s something Ben Marcus said last week I want to examine. A tiny morsel of interest hidden in the OuterKnown of his plucked carcass that could, if it’s cooked the right way, deliver a tender intellectual treat.

BeachGrit’s owned by the WSL.

Yeah, I know.

The guy’s like a Jesuit priest in Tokugawa Japan, preaching his outdated scriptures to a dead-eyed audience. His roots cannot hold in this laissez-faire world.

But this particular conspiracy theory is not the craziest thing he’s ever said. In fact, he could even be right.

WSL could be funding BeachGrit. And we’d all be bit players in a grand false flag attack.

It’d fucken suck if it was true. Wouldn’t pass the pub test, or comments section, for a second.

But, in today’s media landscape it’d be no more surprising than, say, discovering Trump doesn’t write his own speeches.

News don’t come for free, baby.

Of course, BM’s way off the mark. The Wozzle is too scared of its own shadow, too risk averse, to ever consider being associated with this glorious bin fire.

And Derek and Chas strike me as many things, but Machiavellian ain’t one of them.

Yet, we know the Woz froths on a good content partnership. They love to crow about them. Show ‘em off to the world. A big green tick on some god forsaken ‘key engagement strategy pillar’ somewhere within the Santa Monica high tower.

Pay Rolling Stone money. Get positive ‘independent’ media coverage. Watch middle America come flocking.

It’s sponsored content, and everyone’s doing it.

I’ve written before about surfing’s need for a fourth estate. No, we’re not the United Nations. This isn’t life or death stuff, for the most part.

But dissent is important. Critical opinion is needed. Walls of positive noise can only hold so long. The masses are smarter than they’re given credit for, and somebody needs to keep the bastards honest.

So, who pays the bills?

For BeachGrit it’s Cheezstix. Bemboka luxury blankets. Lonely singles in your area. Yeah, those fucking annoying pop-up ads and videos are this site’s lifeblood.

And, for the best surf reporting in the free world, I reckon it’s worth it.

Sure, BG could take the road of TheInertia. 

As per their media kit:

Between our website, social, and OTT channels, we’ve built a comprehensive network of surf, mountain, and health enthusiasts whom we talk to every day. We can effectively integrate your brand into our channels to ensure you’re speaking to the right audience wherever they go.

Just check out their sponsors list. Samsung. Corona. WSL. Michelob ultra lite.

What’s it mean? Every word they publish is tainted. And unless you’re a single-use plastic, there’s nary a dissenting opinion to be found.

TheInertia presents itself as an army of woke, environmentally conscious warriors. But its business model is built on the most insidious form or post capitalism out there. Paid editorial. Where church and state are no longer separated, and corporate brands are allowed to infiltrate our lives so completely that we’re no longer just consumers, but unwitting advocates in their pursuits for profit margins.

It’s crass commercialism dressed in whatever political and social trend is popular at the time.

We all make a faustian pact when we come online. Everything’s for sale, including and most especially you.

But at least on BeachGrit we’ll look you in the eyes when we fuck you.

Of course, BM could be right and BG might actually be a WSL apparatchik.

In which case, Mr Logan, I’m a skilled corporate communicator with over a decade’s experience with some of the world’s leading brands.

Please find my resume, buried under the southern lifeguard’s flag at Newcastle beach.


Quiksilver Pro, France, Day 3: “Sexless crowd watches miserable closeouts, Medina survives, Toledo like chimney sweep in Dickens novel, Yago best on day!”

The French beachbreak, like Michel Foucalt, is a much overrated old fruit. Bad tempered and indecipherable.

To be honest, I ain’t the toothiest Francophile in the tub ’round here. French boobs, yes. Houllebecq, Flaubert, Stendahl, Gilet-jaunes, yes, yes, yes. Camus, De Beauvoir, Sartre: love that shit.

The French beachbreak, like Michel Foucalt, seems very much an overrated old fruit to me. Bad tempered and indecipherable. When Jessi Miley Dyer stood in front of the camera at 8.30 CEST this morning and said this was the best day in the waiting period I thought, sick. After a million french close-outs had pounded the beach at La Grav, it was more, what a punish.

Still there was drama, plenty of what poet Philip Larkin in his ode to sexual awakening, Annus Mirabilis, termed “wrangling for the ring.” Overlapping forty-five-minute heats gave plenty of opportunity, and that was needed, but it was still, according to Connor Coffin, “a lucky dip at best.”

When the world’s best beachbreak scavenger, Gabe Medina, scours every inch of a lineup and can only rip a few four-point chunks off the carcass in forty minutes you know it’s slim pickings.

I couldn’t advise a rewatching that heat but as live action, with the Title in play, it was compelling sport.

Miserable closeouts, almost a total lack of surfable corners. Up and down the line-up, firing at will, hucking left, then a huge inverted backside spin which he tried to sell to judges as make and got denied (unfairly, I thought). It was close to the perfect sudden death scenario – French wildcard Mignot with nothing to lose and a random lineup that could suddenly offer a teepee to the lucky.

Charlie prowled the beach getting more and more stressed, more visibly agitated. The salt and pepper beard seemed greyer by the minute in the wan French sunshine. The dislike, repulsion even, for this man confounds me. The smothering step-father adds a kind of Grimms’ Fairy Tale patina over the World Champions campaign and contrasts with the worldly superstar dimensions: the hang-outs with Neymar, the conference calls with Bolsanaro.

Great theatre.

Fifteen minutes to go and Medina trails the wildcard. Ten, five; still behind. The unthinkable starts to seem possible. Likely even. Four minutes and forty seconds to go and Gabe spikes a small left toob, re-emerges and smashes the oncoming lip for punctuation. Charlie loses his shit in the shorebreak, a one man World Cup celebration and Gabe, of course, gets the score.

For Medina afficionados, I count myself amongst them, his best heat of the year as far as finding a way to win goes.

Last minute reversals, after forty-five minutes of one surfer leading the other, were the theme of the day. Kelly Slater did not look as sparky and rejuvenated as his round nd one performance, but neither did his opponent and housemate, Leo Fioravanti. Both scrapped around in the straighthanders, Kelly cleaving more closely to the Medina template of catching anything and everything in the hopes something may materialise.

Which it eventually did when he slouched in a hollow cavern with arms clasped behind his back. With the best wave of the heat on ice, Kelly looked set to put the head-to-head match-up back to 2-1. Dogs roamed the beach and a curiously sex-less crowd were silent until with a minute to go Leo “spelunkered” his way through an Hawaiian looking right, stepping off onto the sand and demanding a reaction from the crowd.

That was the heat winner. The camera followed Kelly, cruelly, into the empty locker room.

It did not follow Willian Cardoso who also led all heat and lost to a buzzer beater by Wade Carmichael. He did not appreciate the loss. Did he think the final score awarded to Wade was over-cooked? The double bird he threw at the judges and the board punch-out would suggest, yes.

But we will never know because the camera turned away. Lingering near the cut-off at 19, that result could be the most critical of the Panda’s career on the CT, especially with Yago Dora still alive in the draw.

You could make a case that Dora’s performance was the best of the day and find no argument here. It was loose. Very Psychic Migrations. Big greased alley-oop on a left. Landed and literally stepped off on the sand. Another styled-out reverse on a right where he landed in the sand. It was one of those cartoons where the character gets thrown into the sand and has to be dug out.

He motioned to the judges, “Look, what can I do?”

They were unmoved. Colapinto was not a walkover. He would have won any other heat.

Poor old Pip Toledo. The pre-heat vision of Pip with the black beanie sitting, whatever the opposite of jaunty is, made it look like the heat was over before it began. He looked like a chimney sweep in a Dickens novel, a junkie from Trainspotting, a derelict Justin Beiber.

Why is he competing if the back is buggered? It seems cruel and unusual self-punishment. He lost to Lacomare.

Kolohe surfs on. The round of sixteen match-up with Dora potentially the best of the round. My dark horse pick, Soli Bailey, out again in the round of thirty-two. Seventeenth place, a number he has not been able to best all season.

It’s a cruel business, but he’s doing OK. He wont be driving Ubers to Splendour in the Grass next year. And he wont be the only one rueing French closeouts.

Still, there are always the pleasures of the flesh to compensate. Larkins “quite unloseable game” beckons the single man.

Quiksilver Pro France Round of 16 (Round 4) Match-Ups:
HEAT 1: Jordy Smith (ZAF) vs. Jeremy Flores (FRA)
HEAT 2: Ezekiel Lau (HAW) vs. Ryan Callinan (AUS)
HEAT 3: Marc Lacomare (FRA) vs. Wade Carmichael (AUS)
HEAT 4: Julian Wilson (AUS) vs. Jack Freestone (AUS)
HEAT 5: Gabriel Medina (BRA) vs. Adrian Buchan (AUS)
HEAT 6: Seth Moniz (HAW) vs. Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA)
HEAT 7: Kolohe Andino (USA) vs. Yago Dora (BRA)
HEAT 8: Michel Bourez (FRA) vs. Italo Ferreira (BRA)

Roxy Pro France Quarterfinal Match-Ups:
HEAT 1: Lakey Peterson (USA) vs. Malia Manuel (HAW)
HEAT 2: Carissa Moore (HAW) vs. Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA)
HEAT 3: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) vs. Johanne Defay (FRA)
HEAT 4: Caroline Marks (USA) vs. Courtney Conlogue (USA)

Quiksilver Pro France Round of 32 (Round 3) Results:
HEAT 1: Jordy Smith (ZAF) 13.83 DEF. Frederico Morais (PRT) 12.40
HEAT 2: Jeremy Flores (FRA) 8.37 DEF. Caio Ibelli (BRA) 6.07
HEAT 3: Ezekiel Lau (HAW) 11.16 DEF. Owen Wright (AUS) 5.30
HEAT 4: Ryan Callinan (AUS) 14.33 DEF. Michael Rodrigues (BRA) 13.00
HEAT 5: Marc Lacomare (FRA) 12.83 DEF. Filipe Toledo (BRA) 12.17
HEAT 6: Wade Carmichael (AUS) 11.93 DEF. Willian Cardoso (BRA) 9.70
HEAT 7: Julian Wilson (AUS) 11.33 DEF. Jorgann Couzinet (FRA) 6.17
HEAT 8: Jack Freestone (AUS) 8.56 DEF. Kanoa Igarashi (JPN) 8.33
HEAT 9: Gabriel Medina (BRA) 9.76 DEF. Marco Mignot (FRA) 8.84
HEAT 10: Adrian Buchan (AUS) 8.93 DEF. Conner Coffin (USA) 8.60
HEAT 11: Seth Moniz (HAW) 12.60 DEF. Peterson Crisanto (BRA) 10.77
HEAT 12: Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA) 12.43 DEF. Kelly Slater (USA) 11.00
HEAT 13: Kolohe Andino (USA) 10.34 DEF. Soli Bailey (AUS) 9.27
HEAT 14: Yago Dora (BRA) 14.50 DEF. Griffin Colapinto (USA) 13.23
HEAT 15: Michel Bourez (FRA) 11.67 DEF. Joan Duru (FRA) 7.56
HEAT 16: Italo Ferreira (BRA) 13.83 DEF. Jesse Mendes (BRA) 11.77