Maybe falling in love with a mid-length surfboard has changed me. Thawed my bitter, cold heart and made me see, for the first time, that “the best surfer in the water is the one having the most fun.” That “horses for courses” is the way toward enlightenment.
No such thing as a bad watercraft, only bad people. My hydrofoil doesn’t kill you, I do etc.
Well, whatever the case, today I was sent an instagram post featuring a near-naked New Jersey legend goat boating some 50 degree (10 celsius) storm surge and it captivated me nearly as much as Dane Reynolds newest offering.
“Then I saw the whale and I was like ‘that’s pretty cool’."
We surfers, we waggers of tongues and tattlers of tales, have not had a very good Coronavirus Pandemic run or, or at least not as it relates to public perception. Afraid, vicious little rats is how we’ve come off. Also, sanctimonious, hypocritical know-it-alls. Throwing each other under the bus, collaborating with draconian authorities, zooming our whimsical entries for the #HomeBreakChallenge instead of just paddling out into the vast ocean.
Heroes have, of course, risen. Heroes like Mickey Minor in La Jolla who told a SUP to “fuck off” just days ago. Heroes like Django on Australia’s Gold Coast who, yesterday, freed a trapped baby whale from a shark net off Burleigh Heads.
A diver who freed a baby humpback whale from a Gold Coast shark net, while authorities were making their way to the scene, was expecting a fine, despite his good deed.
The man, named only as “Django”, rejected the “hero” status bestowed on him on social media and said he could afford any fine coming his way, despite internet strangers offering to raise funds to cover the cost.
Django took to the water off Burleigh Heads about 7am on Tuesday after a drone operator reportedly spotted the whale entangled in the shark net.
“I was going for a dive off Burleigh,” Django said. “Then I saw the whale and I was like ‘that’s pretty cool’. Then I saw he was in the net and I thought ‘that’s not that cool’. So I went over and had a look, and then the adrenaline kicked in.
I had a knife, but I didn’t really need to use it, he just had his left pectoral fin wrapped up.
“Eventually, I got him enough out of the rope so he could just break free.”
Django said he was not scared of the whale but was cautious of the potentially deadly ramifications of coming too close to shark nets.
Django said he passed the Department of Fisheries team responding to the incident on his way back to shore and explained what had happened.
He said the government workers told him he would be fined for his actions, but Django didn’t go into detail about what the fine was for.
On Tuesday night, a Department of Agriculture and Fisheries spokesman said no decision had been made regarding whether Django would be fined, with the Queensland Boating and Fisheries Patrol yet to finalise its investigation.
Under Queensland laws, shark-control equipment is protected by a 20-metre exclusion zone. Those failing to adhere can be fined $26,900.
In response to questions regarding a potential fine, Django said: “Oh yeah, it’s fair enough … I can afford it … it was an expensive day, but whatever … you’ve just got to pay the price sometimes.”
Despite his potentially expensive day out, Django said he would be back in the water on Wednesday because “the surf is pumping”.
And a proper hero. A reason to feel proud again and all of it, from Django’s name to the fact that he doesn’t care about the fine he’s going to cop to his Wednesday plans, is just perfection.
Should we raise money for a Django statue to be erected at Burleigh Heads?
Speaking of, does the Gold Coast have a statue of Mick Fanning anywhere?
Let’s hurry with our Django plan.
Watch: “Thirty-four-year-old blogger boy” Dane Reynolds lasso “vacant shithole of a beach” on epic rare day!
"Nearly thirty years later, I still hate the wave," says Dane.
Dane Reynolds’ turns lacerate the heart. Don’t they?
If you were to live in Ventura County, well, you might see, up close, these mysterious delicacies.
In this, the third episode of his newly launched blog, with filmer Mini Blanchard, we find Dane surfing, with pals, a beach Dane says he hates and that’s “a vacant shithole.”
This five-minute short was filmed over three days during an out-of-season south swell and after dredging that had moved the sand into position for the alchemy of wave-making to take place.
Dane writes eloquently, I think,
Add sand to the ridiculous set of variables that need to unite for waves to break at optimum quality. Dirt of the ocean. Soil for waves.
Sand is a granular material composed of finely divided rock and mineral that’s defined by size, being finer than gravel and coarser than silt. Erosion of sea cliffs is responsible for 67 percent of California’s beach sand, but it’s likely to have all landed on the coast through mountain watersheds and gone through many cycles of being buried, exposed, buried and liberated again. It’s mostly composed of mica, quartz, granite and shells.
In the industrial world, sand is an “aggregate,” a category that includes gravel and crushed stone. Natural aggregate is the world’s second most exploited natural resource, after water. It’s the primary base material that concrete and asphalt are placed on during the building of roads, buildings, parking lots, runways, and many other structures. Windowpanes, wineglasses, and cell-phone screens are made from melted sand.
It was also used to create the waves which we are exploiting in this video.
This spot was an institution in the 80’s with a tightly regulated lineup. Guys like Davey Miller and Danny Hedges sat at the top of the hierarchy. Chapter 11 TV filmer Mini was there –
“South Jetty Bodyboard Crew was a known thing. Me, Forbes, Aichner and Phil Corsi were the regular’s…then the Landucci’s of course!”
In 1993 congress approved funding to build a 650 ft groin to the which harbor officials deemed necessary to ‘catch sand that sweeps into the harbor entrance from the south.’ Surfrider foundation contended that the natural flow of sand is north to south and the jetty would actually trap sand in the harbor and deplete sand from Oxnard beaches but they lost the battle and just 45 days later the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers finished construction of the “New Jetty.”
At first surfers were stoked, “It made it better,” said 20-year-old Ventura resident Jesse Conlan “It created new sandbars.”
But eventually the beach filled up, which I can attest to, cause in late 90’s me and my friends would paddle across the harbor when it was flat in our neighborhood hoping ‘New Jetty’ would have a flicker of south swell. It was a vacant shithole of a beach. Always dead animals. The sand almost extended beyond the ‘New Jetty.’
When they added 100 yards of rocks to the breakwall that was the nail in the coffin for jetty wedge. Visit the parking lot and you’ll hear all about it from the guys drinking beer and playing horseshoes every day awaiting it’s return…
‘New jetty’s’ sand normalized. It’s is still called ‘New Jetty’ nearly 30 years later and I still hate the wave. It bends out to sea or closes out or somehow does both at the same time and it’s always packed.
Once in a blue moon the sand moves into the place where the swells that bend around the breakwall collide with a borderline backwash refraction off the south jetty and it shows a glimmer of it’s old self. Mostly novelty but a lotta fun.
Is building islands in sensitive ocean waters cool?
Fear of China, and roiling the totalitarian overlords of the world’s biggest potential market, has long hamstrung western power preaching “freedom” and “democracy.”
Who could forget the recent Hong Kong protests where brave citizens took to the streets demanding very small liberties being brutally quashed by Beijing?
It might be imagined that surfers, skaters, snowboarders and the extreme sport companies appealing for our dollars would raise a fist and defiantly shake it east but no. Vans accidentally released a shoe depicting a different Hong Kong protest by an artist that had won an online competition then buried it quicker than it takes to say “freedom ain’t free.”
The Costa Mesa-based company should be deeply ashamed but maybe so should the San Clemente-based Surfrider Foundation that is”…dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network.”
Very fine and good except the world’s biggest ongoing ocean-specific environmental catastrophe gets zero mention.
How could that be?
And let us travel east where the Chinese government has been building islands in a disputed area of the South China Sea for military purposes, trawling for oil, scooping up all the fishies and otherwise behaving abysmally.
China has upped the ante amid rising tensions in the South China Sea by declaring two new administrative districts for the contested region and releasing a new map naming all the islands and reefs it claims.
The provocative moves come as Beijing faces diplomatic pushback from some of its Southeast Asian neighbors against its sweeping assertion of sovereignty across the resource-rich sea.
It also takes place as the China’s Coast Guard and maritime militia pressure other claimants, even as they grapple with the global coronavirus pandemic. Most recently, China has deployed a survey vessel and escort ships near an oil field off the coast of Malaysia.
China’s announcement on the administrative measures came this weekend. The State Council, China’s top administrative body, approved the creation of two new municipal districts: Nansha District, which is based at Fiery Cross Reef, an artificial island built by China that it says will oversee all of the Spratly Islands and their surrounding waters; and Xisha District, based on Woody Island, which will oversee the Paracel Islands.
Will the Surfrider Foundation act?
Also, is there a sweet little point there?
The world’s biggest non-politician polluter Kelly Slater wants to know!
More as the story develops.
World #11 surfer suffering Post Traumatic Stress Disorder after being threatened by cop with taser for playing with kids on beach: “I’m having recurring nightmares and flashbacks! I almost died; my kids would have died!”
On Facebook, and a few posts before a quote from Adolf Hitler describing, in his kinky way, how easy it is to control a population by taking a little of their freedoms one at a time, Shea writes:
The scene. My kids on the left. Saw some sand fleas running back to their surfboards. They love sand fleas. The guy fishing on the right was fake fishing. The officer’s big red truck is approaching from the south. He’s going. 20+mph. He drove that speed thought the water and tide pools until he came to a screeching halt right behind my girls. They all jumped. He yelled to them. I walked up from the north. Tried to let him know we were just surfing. They had wetsuits and boards. It was allowed. Everything went south after I asked his name. My girls crying from the scare he gave them. He could’ve killed us all.
“My question? If you were threatened to be tasered in front of your kids while your kids held tight to your back crying after getting yelled at by this masked and agitated officer in a big red truck. We were at the waters edge. Dead low tide. Two tide pools between us and the normal high tide beach. We were all wet. We would have all died.” SHEA LOPEZ
I have ptsd. It’s not new. Heck. We all experience elevated levels and times of stress that stay with us. To different levels. I’m at odds with what to do now to help me recover from an April attack that left me having recurring nightmares and flashbacks. All very real to me. It was real. The eve of Easter Sunday during quarantine and an emergency order. My question? If you were threatened to be tasered in front of your kids while your kids held tight to your back crying after getting yelled at by this masked and agitated officer in a big red truck.
We were at the waters edge. Dead low tide. Two tide pools between us and the normal high tide beach. We were all wet. We would have all died.
What do I do???
To prevent this from happening ever. In any situation for any reason. A taser. Wet kids. Because we were playing in the surf. Surfing. Dancing. Running. Collecting sea shells as we moved along the beach with our boards.
Why do beach patrol officers have big trucks. Big guns. Tasers. I almost died. My kids would have died. The way our beaches are protected and served. Could use a closer look. I’m scared. My kids were scared. Change is great. Let’s make a change. I don’t want to have nightmares anymore. Until I act on this event. I will keep having nightmares.
More, as, if, the story develops. ie if Shea picks up the telephone etc.