Dane Reynolds releases new video channel along with manifesto: “I miss making surf videos despite the preposterousness of the pursuit!”

And, "I’m going to try and keep the bar low and get videos out rather than dwell on what’s worthy."

A gift, this afternoon, in the form of a big plate of liver mush fry topped with red-eye gravy from the still best surfer in the world, Ventura’s Danny Reynolds.

Reynolds, who is thirty-four and surrounded by bacon fat, has returned to the blog, vlog, whatever it is game, with Chapter 11 TV, a reboot of Marine Layer Productions, which was shuttered two years ago. 

In a manifesto posted to the homepage of Chappy Eleven, Reynolds writes,

Sometimes the absurdity of trying to make surf videos becomes perfectly clear. This particular morning I showed up before dawn and the waves weren’t what I had hoped for.

Mini had texted me the evening before ‘JW going off’ as I was making the kids dinner, which is kinda cruel as I can’t just drop everything for a session anymore, things have to be at least somewhat planned and evenings are mostly reserved for bathing, feeding, managing conflicts and trying to get the kids to bed early enough to have a brief moment of solace. So we agreed to meet first thing in the morning.

But by morning the swell had dropped and it was foggy and cold. I still paddled out to validate the effort. Surfing at dawn is awesome when the waves are exciting enough to get your blood pumping but trying to do airs at this hour is like waking up and doing gymnastics in a cold shower. Water trickled through the seams of my suit as I waited for a shitty little refraction off the jetty to connect with a meager 2 foot swell from the South Pacific so I can catch it and stand my fossilized body up on my surfboard and hopefully do a trick that I can post on my website.

Shit wasn’t coming together so I paddled down the beach where about a dozen people had gathered and there seemed to be a little more action. The waves were a little more interesting with even a few novelty tubes.

I notice a kid paddling for straight closeouts and getting pitched then sitting in the impact zone waiting for waves.

The best wave I’d seen all morning formulates just within paddling distance so I dart off. I see him darting off in the same direction. My goal is to catch a 2 foot clean little barrel, his goal is to not get smoked by a 2 foot clean little barrel.

I get into position.

As I’m dropping in I see him in my peripheral vision still paddling his ass off hoping to not get demoed.

He just makes it out of the way of the waves devastating blow, but bails his board to ensure no physical harm. I make the barrel but have to change my line to avoid hitting his board.

“I should snap on that kid” was my first thought.

Of course I would never because I hate bumming people out more than anything but I’ve been conditioned to think this is a worthy scenario for verbal abuse.

i grumble to myself “If you can’t hold on to your board in 2 ft surf you should be at a beginner spo-”

“Bro that was a SICK barrel!” He shouts which instantly disarms my thought process.

“Ha, yeah, that was a fun little one”

“BRO are you Dane?”

“Ha, yep…”

“Why aren’t you on tour anymore???”

“Cause I’m old and out of shape”

“Bro, but Kelly’s like 50 and he’s still doing IT!”

“Yeah I know… he should probably give it up”

“No way bro, NEVER give up on your dreams!”

This conversation is comical, his level of enthusiasm lifts my spirits.

“But you’re still a PRO SURFER right?”

“I don’t think there’s such a thing as a pro surfer anymore”

Kid was a little confused…

“Do you ever surf Tar Pits??”

Over the course of 2 hours of surfing no clips that i would typically put in a video were recorded, I came home to chaos of fighting children. Bobbie has a knack for spite which triggers Maggie who’s usually cool but when she passes the threshold of frustration there’s no coming back. Sammy loves the chaos and contributes at will. It was more tolerable than normal after getting a few little head dips.

In 2019 I surfed the least I ever have. I was running a business out of my garage while raising 3 kids under 5. Plus the waves in California were mostly shit and the few trips I made time for we got skunked.

With all the kids going to school and Former graduating out of my garage my goal for this year was to make more time for surfing. It’s my salvation.

I got excited to start Chapter 11 TV in January when I was surfing a lot and feeling pretty good about it and getting inspired by the new generation of local surfers. I miss making surf videos despite the preposterousness of the pursuit.

Things have changed for everyone since January and for me has slowed the development of the site but i’m still excited and ambitious. I’m going to try and keep the bar low and get videos out rather than dwell on what’s worthy.

There’s no real concept or criteria for Chapter 11 TV, Surfing means different things to different people, I’m just trying to convey our version of it.

From my experience the less you expect the less you get disappointed.

Do you think Kelly should give it in?

I don’t, at least not until he’s so decrepit he has to be tossed into an incinerator to save his rep.

The other points are all very well made.

Hit here to watch his, and filmer Mini Blanchard’s, first five-minute cut.

Surfer escapes police dragnet in South Africa in daring escape. | Photo: Pee Wee's Big Adventure

Watch: South African surfer makes daring escape from COVID cops on bike; man arrested on beach for “standing still; Jordy Smith stranded “without food and water at airport!”

The Great Escape!

Clear lines have been drawn in South Africa when it comes to going surfing.

All the surfing bodies, like Surfing South Africa and World Surf League Africa, have made statements that any members breaking the law will suffer the consequences.

Most, including professionals like Matt McGillivray, Mikey February and Matt Bromley, have adhered to the ruling and have done what they can do help the situation.

Yet the professional surfing side of things, and the competitive side of things, is but an infinitesimal spec of what the real surfing population is in South Africa and in most parts of the world.

Most people don’t care too much about The League, are currently not working as a direct result of the lockdown,  just want to go surfing, and they are pissed off.

The rules in South Africa are totally out of whack with reality, and the situation is riddled with utter ridiculousness.

We are currently on an ever-speeding downward spiral of death by poverty and related disease that will dwarf any deaths by COVID-19, but back to the subject.

There have been peaceful protests across the country, and most surfers and authorities dealt with it quickly enough and gave each other some begrudging space. If you have any knowledge of how our politics work and how many poor people are suffering and fighting for survival, literally, with no food and no money, you will understand that no one in the corridors of power cares too much about privileged surfers waving expensive surfboards in the air and asking #when?

In Muizenberg, a massive surfing hub, and mainly suited to beginners, longboarders and SUP surfers, a protest took place during the “exercise period” (more on that later), but the surfers were standing still on their protest vigil, so they were duly arrested for “not exercising”.

One surfer managed to escape into the back alleys of Muizenberg on his bicycle.

In a hilarious, medium-speed bicycle/motorbike/police van chase, he escapes the police dragnet, scattering furious local cops.


How bad is the situation in South Africa?

Surfing is banned, and all booze is forbidden.

Bottle stores are closed, and if you are buying or dealing in alcohol, you’re going to jail.

Even cigarettes are banned.

Haircuts are also illegal, and pies are outlawed.

I know. Some crazy shit there. To be clear, let’s unpack:

Curfew 8 pm to 5 am, to stop people socializing.

Jogging (exercise) window 6 am – 9 am. But the first hour is pitch black, with sunrise at about 7 am. So, at 7 am the streets are jammed with people desperately trying to exercise, walk their dogs, keep social distancing and do the right things, but there are so many of us all at once it’s a bit counterintuitive.

Surfing – banned. Beaches are closed.

Booze – banned. It is to keep the hospital beds free for COVID patients, as so many hospital beds are usually filled with booze-related emergencies.

Restaurants are closed, and only deliveries are allowed.

Cigarettes – banned, to help the nation build up healthy lungs before they succumb to the disease.

Haircuts – banned. Hair salons are places where people gather and drink coffee and could easily transmit the disease.

Pies and all hot foods in stores – banned. In case people working with hot food are infected, and to prevent the handling of food.

A few months ago a weekend day might have consisted of having a quick haircut*, maybe having a pie, going for a surf, enjoying a few post-surf beers and perhaps a ciggie or two in the car park, picking up the family and going for a pizza and maybe a few more beers.

That has all gone.

It’s like a dream, as we sit around at our house and homeschool our kids and wonder what the fuck just happened and where all the pies are.

And as for Jordy Smith?

After a challenging transition from his repatriation flight from Hawaii, he’s now safe in a hotel in Johannesburg for fourteen days of isolation. He was stuck on the tarmac “without food or water” with 270 fellow South Africans, but they eventually made their way to the quarantine accommodation. He’s in there with Lyndall, so he’s going to be okay.

Read about Jordy’s plight here.

*Haircut only twice a year, so these exact days don’t happen that often.

Police drawing of the modern surfer.
Police drawing of the modern surfer.

A composite sketch of the modern surfer as revealed under the burning hot klieg light of pandemic disease!

A helpful tool.

This Coronavirus, evil, malicious, bad, etc. is evil, malicious and bad but we here are anti-depressive sorts, glass always at least half full, and over the past three odd months, under its burning bright klieg light, we have learned so much.

A composite of the modern surfer, for example, has become perfectly clear. This knowledge can be used to lift heretofore failing brands out of the wreckage. To dust off Santa Monica’s World Surf League and allow it to soar.

So who is he?

The modern surfer is slightly overweight.

The modern surfer rides a variety of surfboards but refers to them all as crafts or sleds.

The modern surfer is very anti-firearm.

The modern surfer loves to shoot a firearm, when culturally appropriate, and cannot stifle his giggle.

The modern surfer is hyper aware of his age and the tropes associated with his age, ironically sending them up while earnestly embracing at the same time. (Example: Instagram self-portrait featuring a full beard, jaunty hat, dangling cigarette or joint, pants cuffed high with caption: “Living that 34-year-old life!)

The modern surfer prides himself on being well-read and wise.

The modern surfer skims The New York Times on his phone and draws wisdom from something he heard Malcom Gladwell say on a podcast.

The modern surfer is a progressive free thinker deriving his own opinions from all available information.

The modern surfer is gregarious and handsy in public, head thrown back and howls of laughter when something funny has been said, hands on friends’ shoulders for a playful massage, etc. This behavior is ramped up by four when a camera is present.

The modern surfer has grown up soft but spices his history, in the retelling, with tales of daring-do from fathers, uncles, etc. (Example: My dad was a pirate, in a punk band, jailed, etc.)

The modern surfer decries the stupidity of dumb, ignorant, white middle American/Australian racist hicks.

The modern surfer is extremely tolerant.

The modern surfer drinks craft cocktails, craft beer, cheap wine.

The modern surfer is a feminist.

The modern surfer does not believe anything unless it first appears in establishment media and is backed by establishment-approved pundits.

The modern surfer believes himself to be a “power surfer.”

The modern surfer loves the ease and comfort of not having to break-up with chicks face-to-face anymore thanks to app dating.

The modern surfer drops phrases like “Get out there this morning?” “Couple fun little head dips.” “Might get out there later.” and will participate in every #HomeBreakChallenge “SprayChallenge” but also believes that defining himself as a “surfer” is limiting and pointless.

The modern surfer is “here for a good time, not a long time.”

The modern surfer makes sure to follow every edict that pertains to “staying safe” in the age of pandemic disease and quickly resorts to public shaming of those who put him in danger.

The modern surfer has done and will do cocaine in a public bathroom.

The modern surfer has blocked an average of 6 people on Instagram.

The modern surfer would never say it out loud but considers himself an “influencer” amongst his 3k – 8k followers.

Surfer-parent (pictured) getting hauled off in South Africa.
Surfer-parent (pictured) getting hauled off in South Africa.

South African surfers explode in rage over hypocritical, draconian “shelter in place” policing as toddlers arrested for being on beach!

Surfing is a crime.

Will the worldwide singling out of surfers as public enemies no. 1 ever end or has Coronavirus given police states the reason, the power, they need to deal our kind a decisive blow?

More to the point, should our kind be wiped from the face of the earth forever?

The sensible surf media has made its position clear with a resounding “Yes!”

“Surfing is a frivolous pursuit…” Stab, Surfline, The Inertia, the World Surf League declare “…a meaningless nothing especially when we can save billions of lives through science-based actions like being very scared, cowering indoors, hiding in the dark, etc.”

And I am certain the sensible surf media is applauding South Africa right where the police are arresting the parent, likely surfers, for allowing their toddlers, likely future surfers, to run out out on the sand.

Shall we learn more?

The frustration in South Africa with ministers and police appearing to be more focussed on minor crimes – based on rules created during Lockdown – than on helping guide the public on social distancing measures that are safe and that prevent the spread of the coronavirus, has been highlighted by a meme which went viral today.

The meme shows four police officers attending to a solo surfer, apparently in the Eastern Cape, whilst meanwhile – in the picture below it – there’s barely an officer in sight to help as a desperate crowd of people are pushed up extremely close to one another.

Well known South African musician Don Clarke re-posted the meme this morning, and said: “The double standards being practised by our government right now are mind blowing!… Everything visible on stage is badly delivered, while behind the curtains the reality is absolute chaos.”

This morning in Muizenberg a handful of protesting #BackintheWater surfers were arrested (whilst one made a get-away on a bicycle) when they didn’t keep moving in accordance with the regulation that South Africans are allowed to exercise between 6am and 9am.

According to some reports, research shows that the virus could be easily discharged into the air by sea spray or foam.

Meanwhile a Muizenberg father, Liam Bulgen, described to Cape Talk how he and his partner were put into a police van after their 21-month-old toddler ran onto the beach and he went to grab her, whilst they were walking on the promenade.

I’m sure the 21-month-old toddler was put in the police van too, thereby arrested, but shame on South African surfers. They should all be science-based and participating in the World Surf League’s #HomeBreakChallenge.

It is extremely whimsical and fun.

Sponsored Post: Introducing a surfboard rack so tidy you’ll move those favorite li’l beauties from the basement to the penthouse and delight your spouse!

It's like magic!

I don’t feel the burning pangs of jealousy much but a man, or woman, with surfboards functionally displayed in a living space gets me every time.

Surfboards are, of course, our playthings but also undeniable works of art, those curves, that rocker, and keeping them locked in garages or basements is as cruel as it is stupid.

Like displaying Picassos into an outhouse.

My Picassos are displayed in the garage, standing on some moldy carpet, held in place by dowels drilled into a two-by-four.


Well, just the other day I received a brand new QuiverGrip system in the mail. It was minimal, functional, sleek. Adjectives I most admire in my surf accessories.

I wanted to go rip the two-by-four and dowel setup straight out of the garage but that seemed like work and the garage seemed too depressing.

That’s when genius struck.

I would move three of my favorite boards upstairs to the bedroom.

My wife wasn’t home so I couldn’t run it by her but who doesn’t love Picasso?

I am not a handy man but any dimwit with an electric screwdriver and level could sort out how to install and I had it up in five minutes flat.


The three boards I chose were my Vulcan pintail gun for big days at Turtles, the JC board that carried me across Yemen and an Album twin fin, my everyday go to.

I laid down on the bed admiring my work, when finished, and am excited for my wife to come home too.

Our bedroom is now a museum.

Make your bedroom a museum too.

Or an outside fencepost or backyard tree or… honestly anything.

Everything is better with a surfboard on it.

Order here!