The first step in our helping is public ridicule.
The first step in our helping is public ridicule.

Revealed: Professional surfer Jack Freestone denies troubling addiction to Keeping up with the Kardashians, Vanderpump Rules!

He needs our help.

Professional surfers… they’re just like us. Tan, fit, model gorgeous with homes in Australia and Kauai, extremely silky barrel skills, above average air games, tan, fit, model gorgeous spouses and children who will someday make them even richer.

But, underneath the perfect facade and also just like us, trouble often lurks.

Drinking problems, uncontrolled gambling, watching modern reality television like Keeping up with the Kardashians or Vanderpump Rules but denying it.

Alas, the heartbreaking troubles of Jack Freestone, coupled with Alana Blanchard, are worrisome but let us hasten to the pages of E! Entertainment for more, so we can help Jack confront his demons.

What’s also special is Alana and Jack’s bond in and out of the water. While many days are spent catching waves, the pair also enjoys daytime dates and picnics outside.

And yes, Jack is guilty of tuning into his leading lady’s favorite reality TV shows.

“I’ll be watching either Vanderpump Rules or Keeping Up With the Kardashians and he’ll pretend to not want to watch it but then he’s fully tuning in,” she joked to us. “I keep up with Kim Kardashian and Kanye West. He always gives me so much s–t about my reality TV but I just love them and every time I watch, he’s glued.”

Classic addiction behavior what with the “giving s–t” but secretly indulging.

Jack? If you are reading, the second step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. The first is public ridicule (see above).

Also, when I first skimmed the E! story I confused Vanderpump Rules with the film Van Wilder and thought, “What’s wrong with watching Van Wilder?”

A fine work that doesn’t get nearly enough attention.

Gimme: Surf icon-turned-architect’s $US13-million Malibu spread in safe-from-looters-and-anti-capitalist-rioters gated community! “None will ever be able to come close to his genius of style!”

Nobody gonna touch you in the Bu!

Long before Venice surf rat Strider Wasilewski shucked off his Dog Town beginnings and became the king of Point Dume, one of surfing’s great pioneers, Matt Kivlin, designed and built a surfer’s palace on a three-quarter-acre spread above Paradise Cove in the gated enclave Sea Lane.

Kivlin, who died in 2014, is the sorta guy whose legend would’ve been lost to history if it wasn’t for the relentless archiving of Seattle-based former-surfer Matt Warshaw.

A little detour into Kivlin’s EOS post,

Elegant regularfoot surfer and boardmaker from Santa Monica, California; often cited as California’s best wave-rider in the late 1940s and early ’50s; creator of the slouched, knees-together, neatly synchronized “Malibu” surfing style. “Many have been heavily influenced by the Kivlin technique, myself included,” Miki Dora said in 1969. “However,  none will ever be able to come close to this genius of style.”

As a boardmaker, Kivlin is best remembered as a co-creator, in the late ’40s, of the “girl boards”—pared-down all-balsa equipment made for a handful of high school girls who were taking to the water at Malibu. These easy-turning boards were then appropriated by the guys. The girl boards were the forerunner of the “Malibu chip” design. Kivlin and Quigg also developed the first narrow-based raked-back surfboard fin, a design idea that inexplicably went ignored until the mid-’60s.

Just as inexplicably, I suppose, Kivlin quit surfing just before his fortieth birthday and nine years later opened an architecture biz in Santa Monica, quickly becoming one of the country’s most sought-after architects, building over two hundred houses, almost half of ’em in Malibu.

And his old house in Sea Lane, which just came on the market for thirteen-mill, is a testament to his skills.

It’s a compelling sell.

Live the ultimate lifestyle with swimming, diving, surfing, paddleboarding, beachside board storage, and more all right there in your front yard. This amazing ocean view property features multiple structures including a four-bedroom main house designed by famed architect Matt Kivlin, a newly constructed contemporary guest house, and a separate creative media production space – all set on 3/4 of an acre of prime beachside real estate.

Real fine backyard.

The main residence is light-filled and open with a bohemian vibe and easy indoor-outdoor flow leading to sun-drenched decks, a saltwater pool and spa, an outdoor gym with a sauna and ice bath, a big grassy yard and complete outdoor kitchen.

Across the Sea Lane easement with a separate private entrance sit the newly constructed Guest House and Studio. In a lush garden setting with a pond, fountain and fire pit the modern guest house is smartly equipped with a gourmet kitchen, walk-in closet, polished concrete floors, standing seam metal roof and jacuzzi. Across a big wrap around deck is the separate open studio space with glass and steel construction, polished concrete floors, sleeping loft, and Murphy bed.

Happy living space for rich bohemian wishing to escape looters and rioters just down the way.

The yard is alive with fruit trees, a veggie garden, ceramics shed, outdoor bathtub and ample parking for guests who are not going to want to leave. This unique property offers the best of California living, privacy, security, exclusive beach access, spacious yards, and gardens. This exceptional opportunity is ideal for creative souls, families or anyone looking for this coveted lifestyle.amenities by the ocean.

Waves are down a private track, accessible only to you and fellow inhabitants of Sea Lane.

Buy, inspect further, here.

Mea Culpa: Stab magazine, Carissa Moore and the embarrassingly shortsighted swap of legitimacy for access!

"We appreciate your time and candor, Riss, and apologize for the time you had to spend putting out spotfires."

Wild times of change, wild days of upheaval but at least we can count on three certainties: The sun will rise each morning, grown men who take their coffee with cream carry some heavy secret burden and Stab magazine will apologize profusely, publicly to professional surfers whom have had their feelings hurt by the editorial staff.

But shall we hasten to the latest in what has become its own literary genre?

The scene is set somewhere between Australia’s Gold Coast and Hawaii’s Gathering Place where Mick Fanning interviewed Carissa Moore for one of the Venice-adjacent publication’s hundreds of podcasts.

Now, I was unable to make it through the actual chat, as Mick Fanning was interviewing Carissa Moore, but apparently a quote from the conversation was posted to Stab‘s Instagram that caused much hand-wringing, falling on knees, tearing of garments and hollering “Mea culpa! Mea culpa!” to the heavens and/or Hawaii’s Gathering Place.

Per @stab: “We’ve pulled down the IG main feed and stories from our Stab Unplugged with @mfanno and @rissmoore10. The pull quotes said in jest (Kelly doesn’t write me back etc) were shared in a loose, throwaway sense and take a different light immortalized as text. We appreciate your time and candor, Riss, and apologize for the time you had to spend putting out spotfires. The YouTube and podcast are still live in their original form. Sam McIntosh, Stab.

To clarify, Carissa Moore said something that was quoted then vanished with tear-stained amends.

While none of this is surprising, it continues a thoroughly vexing trend. Journalistic integrity being traded for access is nothing new, but the way in which propaganda is now being delivered as fact is.

Take, for example, the recent, much-lauded ESPN documentary series on Michael Jordan.

The Last Dance was praised high and low… except by teammates, Jordan family members, honest critics and those who knew the actual truth. Jordan, you see, produced the special and, while enjoyable on the surface, propagated a whitewashed lie. Certainly not “the untold story of Michael Jordan’s Bulls.”

Access granted. Legitimacy jettisoned.

Now, Stab still positions itself as a “slightly edgy, independent voice” but is so starving for acceptance from the pros and pro-adjacents that it regularly makes an absolute mockery of backbone.

The “slightly edgy” and “please-please-please-accept-us” tripping all over each other with every apology, each chubby ringed finger’d backslap.

Subject rage is part of the game, though.

Filipe Toledo was recently very aggrieved by the short CANDID, barking and hollering and claiming he will no longer be available to BeachGrit.

“You don’t five a f what the surfer thinks! No respect at all”

The piece was honest-ish though didn’t slot in with his self-narrative, apparently, but his self-narrative, Michael Jordan’s self-narrative, Carissa Moore’s self-narrative, Mick Fanning’s self-narrative…… UGH!

They are all only slightly tethered to reality which is always a more compelling, more interesting, more beautiful story. What we writers, journalists, tabloid muckrakers should be perpetually hunting.

The damned truth-ish.

Filipe is right, at the end. Nobody in “surf media” should give a f what the surfer thinks, only what is fair, authentic, entertaining.

The “f” should only ever be about The People™.

Surfers stage unity paddle outs to honor George Floyd, protest police brutality, in Maui, Santa Cruz, Encinitas!

Youth against establishment!

And what times we are living through, what wild times where the fabric of society seems ripping apart all around us, riots lighting up global cities in response to one too many unarmed black men being killed by the police, surfers near the front lines of demanding justice for the traditionally marginalized.

But what?


Though it’s true as the past few days have seen well-attended paddle outs and demonstrations in beach communities not traditionally associated with civil disobedience.

From Maui we read:

Over 300 Maui residents attended a “paddle out” at Laniapoko Beach on Sunday to remember George Floyd, a black man who died while under Minneapolis Police custody.

Makawao resident Jennifer McGurn learned of the floating memorial through word of mouth.

McGurn posted photos and videos of the memorial on Facebook. It’s since been shared over 43,000 times.

“The feeling on the beach that day was incredible and true aloha. From comments I read, I think people just want beauty and light in their lives right now. It’s been a pretty dark time the last few months. First COVID-19, now this,” she said.

From Santa Cruz:

Organized by Megan Rodriguez, dozens of surfers met for a Paddle Out for Peace to spotlight the racism and discrimination displayed in and out of the water.

Rodriguez, who is of mixed race, moved to Santa Cruz in 2015 from New York. Coming from the diverse community of New York to witness and feel racial tension in the Santa Cruz waters was a bit shocking, she said.

“Most of the racial comments came from the children,” she shared. “I’d ask them why they said certain things, and they’d say that they heard these things from their parents.

And in Encinitas, some five-thousand met at Moonlight Beach with hundreds paddling out.

In the direct wake of George Floyd’s killing, a well-meaning but very upset friend rage-texted me many times that surfers are awful, horrible, protesting beach closures but staying silent about more serious, heartbreaking, tough issues. Yesterday’s protest and paddle in Encinitas dwarfed those others.

Of course, protesting is only one form of action but there does seem to be an appetite for greater change. A desire to check a broken system that has stretched from the cities to the coast.

The youth agitating against the establishment once again.

"Hey Tom, you know what's good for shoulder pain? " "What"?" "If you lick my butthole."

Longtom on WSL CEO Erik Logan’s promised June 1 tour change reveal: “ELO’s made a career out of the illusion of control, but when you let the narrative twist in the breeze for three long days that illusion starts looking very shaky!”

A silence louder than bombs.

Surf jernalizm is a queer calling at the best of times in the best of circumstances, and I use the word queer in the oldest of oldest school ways.

Pro surfing jernalizm is an even weirder little corner of the “content creation” universe to inhabit.

You gots to pay close attention for a meaningful period of time to something that very few people give a fuck about. You have to adopt, consciously or unconsciously the edict of famed NFL coach Vince Lombardi who said, on the subject of football, “You have to be smart enough to figure it out and dumb enough to think that it matters”.

Or something like that. 

So you forgive old Longtom for being in a state of tumid excitement for roughly the last month since a haggard and pale ELO dropped his latest clip with the huge news that a major, major restructure of the Tour was in the offing.

Pro surfing, as we knew it, was essentially dead and something almost entirely new was about to emerge from the ashes.


The sport has been  ripe for change for years; really, since the 2011 mid-year cut that brought us both John John Florence and Gabriel Medina. That process of cutting numbers, changing the rotations of surfers in and out of the championship Tour was a beginning, not an end, but surfer dissatisfaction stopped it dead in its tracks.

ELO promised some more meat on the bone June 1.

On Hold until June 1, he said.

Great, I’ll be there June 1, stay up all night if I have to, to watch the unboxing. Four am Aussie time, I got the coffee, the new pen, the notebooks ready. The WSL website is devoid of announcement, no video presser of ELO dropping the new Tour in our lap, or at least a rough sketch with a few more details.

Nothing all day.


That’s weird.

What other sport would promise fans a huge shake-up of the Tour and then just deliver radio silence?

June 2.

Nothing again.

A silence louder than bombs.

What happened to the timeline?

Did ELO forget?

There is a lot going on.

Was the Tour restructure delegated to an intern, maybe the same one who left on the Corona Bali Open VIP ticket experience despite the fact Bali is dropped from the Tour this year?

Were they too busy creating new engaging content to film ELO giving us the lowdown?

I can only speculate.

Not even a leak to a favourable media organisation was forthcoming. 

June 3, seventy-two hours after the promised call about both this years Tour and the major restructure a simple social media tile was released.

On hold until early July. 

What happened in that three days?

Did they not know?

Were they waiting for something? 

For the average gal on the street, no news is good news.

For a global sports governing body, a delayed announcement and then an even fuzzier promise to update looks kooky. It doesn’t inspire confidence in the man from Oklahoma. ELO’s made a career out of the illusion of control, but when  you let the narrative twist in the breeze for three long days that illusion starts looking very shaky.

So, what now?

Interest drips away.

We wait, I guess.

But can we be honest, amongst pals?

Yes? Good.

Pro surfing has never been an American thing. Never. It’s sputtered and fizzed out, occasionally flashes of interest light up the sporting landscape on the back of once in a generation talents like Curren or Dane, then long periods of torpor or outright hostility follow.

It’s an Australian thing. Has been since it’s inception, or since the southern-hemi upstarts stole it off Fred Hemmings and Randy Rarick, to be more precise.

No offence to my American colleagues but Australians have a talent and temperament for pro surfing that simply does not exist in the American soul.

The headquartering of WSL in Los Angeles will one day be registered as a grand failed experiment, precisely because it’s antithetical to attracting the best talent, which is Australian.

Run this thought experiment with me.

Posit a hypothetical, let’s say, Commissioner. Highly talented, highly intelligent, highly respected. Loves his surfing, loves his family, loves his quality of life.

Why would this hypothetical talent, who could be a grand bridge between American capital and the pro surfing fan base relocate to Los Angeles, when he could live, lets say, on the North Coast of NSW and enjoy the best of what life has to offer a man of his talents and proclivities?

Well, he wouldn’t would he.

Which means the WSL doesn’t have the calibre of his intellect in the room when the blue-sky thinking and implementation is taking place. The directional pull for global talent is generally considered to be towards the United States but in this case it’s the reverse.

You see what I’m saying, right?

ELO’s a great flimflam man.

But he’s not got the skill set, as they say, to restructure the sport.

Meanwhile, the clock ticks.

Injury, CoronaVirus and now administrative incompetence robs us of three years of John John Florence mastery.

The greatest Top Ten in the history of the sport languishes while Global Sport announces plans to get back to work.

Elo, where’s the motherfucking plan at?