Watch: Poet and activist enters tequila brand Jose Cuervo’s “Spirit of Surfing” challenge; crushes all-comers with impassioned speech!

Fine art.

I, myself, am not typically a contest enterer. The odds certainly never feel in my favor and that sort of defeatist attitude doesn’t lead to wonderful manifestations of victory but this new “Spirit of Surfing” challenge seems very much up my alley.

The contest, in association with pandemic profiteering website Surfline, has very simple rules:

Here’s how to enter: in a small homemade video show us or describe to us your ideal day of surfing and share with us your go-to post session, share with friends-at-sunset-hour, cocktail recipe using one of the following bottles of Jose Cuervo ® Tradicional ® tequila: Plata, Reposado or Añejo.

And the prize sublime:

Each of the top six “home mixologist” winners will take a friend to the Surf Ranch this September for a once-in-a-lifetime day filled with special guests (including Mr. Pipeline Gerry Lopez) and spectacular waves. So, what are you waiting for?

If you have listened to any Dirty Waters, you’ll know that I, myself, enjoy sunset hour cocktails with my friends Derek and Longtom and also idealize surfing days but alas, right when I was preparing to submit my entry I watched poet and activist John Wayne Freeman’s and my spirit is crushed.

Crushed but also buoyed that a man, an artist, can capture the zeitgeist so well.

Your contest makes no sense. I see that you took all the money from the billion dollar tequila company Jose Cuervo and that you came up with an “idea” about “the spirit of surfing.” “The spirit of surfing.” You are holding a contest with Mr. Health, Gerry Lopez, who, I’m pretty sure doesn’t drink, he’s the reason I got into hot yoga, Mr. Holistic you get to surf with, right? In a fake wave lake? It’s not even in the ocean? In a lake? And we’re surfing with a guy whose entire life has been about health? And its put on by Jose Cuervo? Do you know what I’ve done because of Jose Cuervo?

Truly and undeniably the spirit of surfing.

As always, blame Surfline.

Listen: Shane Beschen on new orgasms-and-cocktails-tittys-and-honeybuns Arizona wavepool, “Shock waves of pleasure!”

Entire "human ecosystems" built around blue-water wedges…

In this episode of Dirty Water, number twenty-five, you’ll note the terrible absence of verbal histrionics and the laughing outright into people’s faces.

Charlie Smith, who just celebrated a birthday, disappeared for two days on a sailing adventure and, therefore, the forty-five minutes is constrained by my introversion and inability to carry a conversation without volumes of paper notes.

Today’s guest on Dirty Water, Shane Beschen, has been described as a “loner and a malcontent” and with a face that has the pitiful expression of a cruelly beaten child. 

Although a recent guest on Dirty Water, the forty-eight-year-old former world number two returns with important news concerning his tank in Mesa, Arizona, using engineering and tech made in Minnesota; the rapidly evolving world of wavepools; we later veer into the possibility that the sled-driven pool, as fabulous as it is, may already be obsolete.

Beschen also pokes a timely fork into the eye of Surfrider Europe.

Leave a review on Apple podcasts, forward your address to us, and we’ll send you something shiny in return.

"The modern exasperated sigh of surfing" Martin Potter (right) points his love gun at Joe Turpel.
"The modern exasperated sigh of surfing" Martin Potter (right) points his love gun at Joe Turpel.

“Modern voice of surfing” Joe Turpel gives beautiful interview to local news station, not a dry eye left in the house!

"It’s still honestly surreal."

The Rumble at the Ranch, now one week in the rearview, reintroduced professional surfing to an entertainment starved public and… to be honest I have not read or heard one good thing about it. Mocking Kelly Slater’s Green Kingdom, its monotony, its “unnecessary irresponsibility,” has become too easy and so I’m always on the lookout for a voice to force me to see it in a different light.

Always on the lookout even to this very day, but while we are discussing voices, the “modern voice of surfing” Joe Turpel gave such a warm interview to his local Hawaiian television station khon2.

Do you forget that Turpel is Hawaiian? I certainly do and/or never realized in the first place but there he was discussing his personal history…

I was taking a summer school class at Punahou and the teacher was Pal Eldredge and he made us do a sports report of our favorite team. I was playing baseball at the time and I did a full Dodgers breakdown of their last game and Mr. Eldredge said ‘hey, you might wanna take this VHS tape back to your parents and show them what you did today,’ and I was like ‘what do you mean?’ He’s like ‘maybe you should do this in your life.’ That was the first time I was like ‘oh my gosh, maybe I want to be a broadcaster.’

His feelings at the dawn of Covid…

We had like a heat to go and we realized this might be maybe the last heat of the year (Carissa’s victory). At the time it seemed surreal. It just felt like ‘wait, is this going to be a couple of weeks or is Snapper (Rocks) gonna be back on?’ Then eventually it led to further down, the full cancelation of 2020.

But most importantly, his being called “The Modern Voice of Surfing…”

It’s still honestly surreal. I have a hard time saying that myself because it feels too big,” he said. “For me, I’m still this kid that loves to surf so to be able to even think that is incredible. I almost don’t spend too much time thinking about it because it feels too big. I’m just enjoying it all. It’s definitely an honor to hear something like that.

If your eyes aren’t moist then you are not human.

Bombshell: Kelly Slater’s green bonafides shattered as surfing’s largest environmental organization decries wave pools as “excessive consumption… unnecessary and irresponsible” in scathing missive!


Surfrider Europe delivered a massive blow to student of Chinese culture and 11x World Champion Kelly Slater by releasing its official position on wave pools and there is little to nothing about it which the part-owner and spokesman for KSWaveCo. can find reassuring.

The world’s largest surf-specific environmental organization pulled no punches in its recent missive titled Wave Pools: Concerns Outweigh their Value moving point by point through how projects like Slater’s Surf Ranch and proposed Surf Ranch Australia “artificialize” the land, destroy habitats, add to the decline of biodiversity, suck enormous amounts of water and power, weaken ecosystems and promises to fight any such project along the European coastline.


As you well know, Kelly Slater is also an environmentalist, and has a deep love of the ocean, having first become aware of how important it is to protect them whilst, maybe coincidentally, surfing in France.

“There were so many plastic bags in the water that I remember at one point thinking that if I fall and get a mouthful of water, I might choke on a plastic bag.” he told noted marine conservationist Dr. Stone in a wide ranging interview. “Once you have an awareness around something, (you) change immediately.”

Here, you can see the great passion he feels for our saline playground.

Aside from his artificial wave pools potentially solving the great “surfers-choking-on-plastic-bags-after-falling scenario (controlled environment, pool cleaners with long poles to gather bags from the water etc., it is difficult to argue with Surfrider Europe’s position vis-á-vis the environmental impact. Many, many buckets of greenwash would be necessary but what then will professional surfing’s greatest of all time do?

It is uncertain how, or if, Slater will respond to Surfrider Europe as they are now likely blocked across his social media channels.

More as the story develops.

The massive Spider crawled right toward my driver side window with a speed and agility I had never experienced.

IN MEMORY OF THE SURF REPORT (BY SURFER): “In a surf traveler’s stash of essentials, an ugly orange, perfunctorily font typefaced ‘guide’ was in everyone’s backpack.”

Not all information contained therein necessarily accurate…

There was a time when man used paper products to convey information, as archaic as that sounds now.

In a surf traveler’s stash of essentials, an ugly orange, perfunctorily font typefaced “guide” was in everyone’s backpack.

It was called The Surf Report and it took traveling somewhere to realize how much bullshit it contained, but information was not accessible and at least it gave us some info to explore beyond.

Personally scribbled, the added texts beyond the margins of the original report were gold.

We guarded these “secrets” like they were actually secret. Technically, they were our secrets.

It was on a trip to an unfamiliar stretch of New South Wales coastline that I remember scanning the dog-eared copy yet again for that region.

I had driven past or through this stretch a dozen times without even stopping for petrol. We considered Newie a “drive through town” which we now use to condescend the mid-west US as we fly over.

The drive from Coffs (I used to love that left off the headland just north of town) to Sydney was not urgent, our flight did not leave for another two days. Redhead Beach was the call, we saw a glimmer of waves before dusk, the wind was good and the nearby cabins were cheap as dirt.

We had two boxes of beers to dust and one joint left from the Hippy girl at Nimbin who got me fucked up on mushy tea a few weeks earlier.

My bro handled the booking while I scoured The Surf Report for info on the area.

We were given the key to our abode and my smiling friend cracked the first beer as he sarcastically asked if I had learned anything?

We made fun of each other, laughed and got wasted and the normal protocol of deciding who got the lone bed was decided in his favor.

I pulled out the tattered Report and began a thorough reading for items I missed during my last thorough reading.

One defining section of the Report was “Hazards”.

Sure, pretty obvious. Sharks, sharp rocks, blah blah blah, but the shit that always freaked me out was the small critters.

Snakes specifically and in this issue, Spiders.

The list of Spiders of concern was lengthy. The weed had had its effect and I began to obsess over the brown funnel web spider description.

Suddenly, I dropped the flashlight that I was reading by and picked it up light first shining the battery powered illumination onto the ceiling briefly, then again and again.

The ceiling of this fucking rental was almost completely covered in Spider webs.

My buddy is soundly passed out and now I’m off the floor and setting up my sleeping bag on the kitchen table. Which seemed a good plan, yet closer to the intricately spun hunting ground above my head.

You’ve know the phrase, sleeping with one eye open?

I think it was more romanticized in its historic sense. Clint Eastwood taking a nap while the local inbreds surrounded him for a gunfight he would win anyway.

Not this time, just a mid-twenties surfer freaking out over deadly spiders in cave of spiders.

“What the fuck is wrong Hip, you didn’t get any sleep?”

I was outside well before light and he had awoken to piss. I was still clutching that fucking Orange report in my hand, too scared to let it go although I had the thing memorized.

“We’re sleeping in a spider’s den… well, you were sleeping.”

He looked up to the spot that I pointed to.

“Holy fuck, that is a curtain of webs.”

He grabbed the report and read the warnings. His eyes opened as he scanned his bed and the proximity to the A-frame ceiling close to the wall next to the bed.

Surf looked very fun and I quickly forgot the long night. North-ish direction of the swell was sweeping lefts south and there were cross current rights on offer too.

I made a mental note to revise The Surf Report to exclude another stay at the cabin and to note the good beachbreak.
We were laughing about our good fortune as the fisherman parked around us groused about a poor morning’s luck finding lunch.

You know that feeling, being so happy when others are fucking angry.

Like Malibu ’83 when I’m skipping back to Topanga and my parked car while huge surf and mudslides ruined people’s homes.

Or surfing through fires while all the residents evacuate and it’s pumping.

I remember a hurricane forcing mass evacuations and the San Jose River mouth dialing as good as it gets. Man, that was a good day, long before the new harbor ruined the iconic break.

Three-hundred yard tubes. Chicken-skin pinch-worthy.

Anyway, on this day, the fishermen were the grumpy locals and we were the elated tourists.

I got into the car, both side windows were rolled down all night and I turned on the ignition to defrost the front window screen as it was time to say au revoir to the disgruntled oldies packing away their tackle boxes.

As the Holden sputtered to life, directly in front of my window emerged an enormous spider caught under the screen and flushed by the defrost cycle.

The massive Spider crawled right toward my driver side window with a speed and agility I had never experienced.

My buddy roared and I climbed over him to “escape” out the passenger side.

Full-scale panic.

The car lurched to a stop as I let go of the clutch.

The Fisho’s had the laugh of their lives as the mood tables had turned.

One grabbed a broken branch and invited the spider to the nearby brush as we caught our breath. We had barely escaped death it seemed.

“Mate, what are you guys so scared of?”

I handed The Surf Report to him, opened to the small paragraph on the brown recluse.

He read the passage to his crew and they all fell about laughing.

Apparently, the brown recluse was not the spider “attacking” me and was diminutive of size and rarely seen round those parts according to the oldies.

We tried to look cool pulling away, but the boys waved to us with more jeer than cheer.

We arrived in Narrabeen and got a proper room that night.

That peak was going off, but crowded as fuck with a very capable crew owning it. We surfed the beach park as I had on trips before and it was so much fucking fun.

Somewhere, in a box of discarded school papers and report cards in my Mom’s attic laid a plethora of Surf Reports, each customized in my own hand writing.

When she died, I never thought to look for the collection.