"Danger is our business."

Florida surfers revolt against Coronavirus Clampdown: “COVID-19 is not here, bro!”

Take THAT Gestapo!

The general public has officially grown restless. Arbitrary beach closures, trail closures, dumping sand into skate parks, widespread tattling, “reading a book under a tree” made a crime, Coronavirus Gestapo reaching levels of ecstasy over broad, unchecked powers, etc.

A nasty turn but we’ll always have Florida and that is where we shall travel for our next grand tale of surfer rebellion. To St. Augustine Beach, specifically, near Jacksonville where the Jaguars thrill the masses with a less-than-inspired brand of professional football.

For it is there that city officials decided to open beaches from 6 am to 12 noon for physical activity etc.

Why not open until 5 pm or even 7 pm?

Common sense does not reign in the Time of Coronavirus and let us turn to Jacksonville’s local news affiliate for the surfer reaction.

On Friday evening, the beaches were closed to the public but that didn’t stop many people from hitting the sand and surf in defiance on the last day of the current order.

“COVID-19 is not here, bro,“ a young St. Johns County surfer told News4Jax as he walked off the beach Friday night. “We’ve been out here the whole time, just having fun man.”

As of Friday evening, there were 186 cases of COVID-19 in St. Johns County and four have died due to the illness.

“COVID-19 is not here, bro!”

A rallying cry?

Our rallying cry?

More as the story develops.


Tell it like it is.

Political dynamite: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern warns wanna-be VALS: “If you don’t surf, don’t start!”

"A vast confederacy of losers."

In an explosive press conference earlier today, New Zealand’s PM Jacinda Ardern, whose government banned surfing almost one month ago, announced it was considering easing the lockdown, starting next Wednesday.

With one important caveat.

If you don’t surf, don’t start.

“Level 3 is a progression, not a rush to normality. It carries forward many of the restrictions in place at level 4, including the requirement to mainly be at home in your bubble and to limit contact with others. Protecting the health of New Zealanders is our primary focus but we also need to position the economy for recovery.”

Blah blah.

Then,

Surfing, swimming and beach fishing would be back on the menu but “people should not take up new activities that they had never done before.

Have you ever read such charged words?

Don’t think about even wanting to surf.

I wonder,

Is this Ardern’s “We will fight them on the beaches” moment, an echo of Churchill’s stirring speech to the House of Commons in 1940, as the Nazi jackboot stood poised on the Brit’s neck?

The Don’t Surf, Don’t Start campaign was the work of Gotcha founder Michael Tomson, of course, and if we peel ourselves away from 2020 for a moment and peer into Matt Warshaw’s cupboard, we’ll examine its influence.

Gotcha’s hipness was in part born of contempt for the people buying the project. The company’s sneering formulation of cool was epitomized by their 1988 “Don’t Surf” campaign. Each ad featured a full-page black-and-white portrait selected from what Gotcha’s marketing heads obviously saw as a vast confederacy of losers—schoolboy nerd, fat teen, middle-aged bald guy, low-life urbanite—and an all-caps banner reading, “If You Don’t Surf, Don’t Start.” Turn the page and there was a blazing color action shot of a Gotcha teamrider, with a second banner: “If You Surf, Never Stop.” Cruel and effective.

Cruel but effective.

Cruel but effective. 

A vast confederacy of losers. 

It is always darkest just before the Day dawneth, as they say.


Listen: “I already go to bed hating myself every night… but bless Jack Freestone and Alana Blanchard and the future of professional surfing!”

We live in the future!

We are officially living in the future, a vast Coronavirus pandemic erasing the entire past in just a few short weeks. When humanity emerges from its quarantine cocoon, things will be much different. 1 in 7 people won’t have jobs, professional basketball players will complete a shortened season in empty arenas, professional surfing will likely write off the 2020 tour and point toward 2021.

But does a tour make sense even then? Will sponsors be lining up to underwrite events that generate tens of thousands of views? Will co-Waterperson of the Year Dirk Ziff still have the money/desire to toss tens of millions after tens of millions holding onto some hope even after social distancing’s premier game couldn’t get ‘er done when it mattered?

Hmmmm.

And maybe professional surfing looks like a YouTube channel featuring fun, sun and parenting tips exactly like Jack Freestone and Alana Blanchard’s Happy Waves.

Oh it may sound like I’m fun making but I always sound like I’m fun making.

No.

Jack Freestone is handsome and winning. Alana Blanchard is beautiful and spirited. They both surf very fine, form an extremely cute family unit, speak YouTube fluently and generate more clicks and “engagement” in a month than Erik Logan’s World Surf League does all year even though Erik Logan is Oprah Winfrey’s prodigy and a Storyteller in Chief.

Hmmmm.

So?

Will the World Surf League transition to an agency representing “talent” and help “currate” surf-esque “shows” while rolling the tour back to “key events” that can hold much “ancillary content?”

David Lee Scales and I discuss this, Bill Gates and how much I go to bed, each night, hating myself. We broke quarantine to meet in San Clemente, in person, so this is back to being our best show yet.

When reached for comment World Surf League CEO Erik Logan said, “We are equally as aggressive in the development off-platform space as we are for the on-platform and even social space that you’re seeing. That is an area that obviously most people don’t see, and you only see the fruits of that development when deals are struck and when shows are announced, but the work is continuing at a very accelerated rate.”

Listen here!


Watch: Brave San Diego surfer flees Coronavirus Gestapo while adoring public cheers him on!

The pièce de résistance!

And has the rebellion really and truly begun? The People™ finally having enough of a draconian Gestapo state and recalling that we were all once free to feel the sun on our skin, to toe the sand, to surf?

Possibly inspired by one thin man brave enough to order Asian fusion dishes and eat them outdoors?

It’s springtime for Hitler in the northern hemisphere, his fall in the southern.

Bondi Beach, near Sydney, is allegedly getting re-opened after a “wave of anger” from locals.

And in San Diego?

Derek Dunfee, noted big-wave surfer and photographer, captured his pièce de résistance yesterday, a wetsuited surfer fleeing the Coronavirus Gestapo while residents assist and cheer.

Watch here!

Beautiful.

Inspiring.

Surfing’s raised fist.


New Zealand surfer (pictured) giving an entire nation Coronavirus and killing millions.

Breaking: Coronavirus Gestapo collaborator becomes extremely agitated by lone surfer, attempts severe public shaming!

As surfers, it's time to rise up.

Hasn’t this farce run its course? Each day unfurls never-before-seen bizarre twists. Our elected officials chasing rule with rule with rule with rule with ticket with closure. Locking everything down and keeping it locked (save Santa Cruz) in the face of overwhelming evidence that the whole world is not, in fact, Wuhan, China.

Or New York City.

Population of Wuhan?

12 mil.

Population of New York City?

10 mil.

Population of New Zealand?

4 mil.

The entire country of four million people with much hobbits, sheep and open spaces mixed therein.

Social distancing to an extreme level even in the best of non-pandemic times, as hobbits and sheep don’t exist on the same breath plane as humans, but Karen’s gonna Karen as they say and I’m going to post the following piece from Glen “Karen” Scanlon in full because it may well be the high water mark of obscene tattle-taling in our time.

A work of art?

I think yes.

“Mind your own business,” the man sitting in the back of the white van is yelling at me.

I didn’t really catch it the first time, as my headphones are in. So I stare back rather blankly.

“Mind your own business and keep running,” he hollers.

I continue to stand and stare at him. Then I resolve not to mind my own business, hit send on the above picture and skip off.

White van man is parked next to Wellington’s Lyall Bay, where the sea is still pounding after yesterday’s southerly surge. This is on the same stretch of coastline where freak waves left a person in hospital and forced residents to evacuate their homes.

On the other side of white van man, about 20 metres away, where he can’t see them, are a series of people, appropriately spaced, staring out to sea agog. As a poignant reminder we’re in a pandemic, one is wearing a face mask.

White van man, me and the others have been watching a person, who must be his companion, attempting to surf in the large swells. I say attempting, because he didn’t succeed in catching a wave while I spent five minutes standing there gawking.

All around us, right to the other side of the road, are a reminder of the sea’s power – clumps of seaweed, large rocks and silt which has bubbled up through drains.

There’s a man picking his way through, collecting some of the detritus for his garden. Behind us, the airport is completely silent. There is no traffic. The cafe 200 metres away is shut. The shopping centre across the road may as well have tumbleweeds rolling through it. No one else is in the sea. The lady with the face mask is still watching. Everything screams this is not normal.

The majority of people are doing their utmost to help stop Covid-19 in its tracks. They’re sticking to the rules we’ve been begged to follow. Yes, this chafes against our natural inclinations but the terrible price of doing differently is not just our own suffering. The greater good relies on each of us doing the right, the sensible thing.

But for some reason Mr selfish surfer and white van man think they get a special pass.

It makes me angry, so I’m not minding my own business.

Glen, I’m sorry, Karen?

Mind your own fucking business.

More as the story develops.