Kelly Slater and Betet Merta, Padang, September, 2020.

Indonesian island Bali to re-open for foreign tourism “early in new year” in desperate bid to revive collapsed economy, stem mass unemployment!

Dark cloud about to lift from the island of the Gods.

Empty streets. Shuttered stores. Families ruined. Bali in 2020 ain’t an island filled with optimism.

A twelve-billion dollar a year tourist industry, sixty-percent of its GDP, evaporated. What terrorist bombings and hundreds of dead tourists couldn’t achieve almost twenty years ago, a mysterious virus has.

In September, eighty-three…yeah, eighty-three, tourists got into Bali, a 99.986% drop from the previous year.

Come for a little stroll down Jalan Legian, the main drag that runs north-south from Kuta to Seminyak. Gone are the machine-gun staccato of scooters, the quack of a thousand klaxons, the throaty gargle of tourists retching into Hindu offerings.

Fifteen bucks gets you a hotel room, fifty cents dinner.

Charity groups put the unemployment rate at eighty percent, a little different to the Indonesian government’s seven-and-a-half.

Babies fed water instead of formula, families relying on not-for-profit groups to survive.

Originally, Bali had planned to open the island to foreign tourists on September 11 but was revised when COVID lit up, again, worldwide.

But, now, after an inspection by a delegation from the United Nations World Tourism Organization, the island may open to foreign tourists as early as January.

UN WTO Asia and Pacific director Harry Hwang said the island was ready to re-open, safety protocols ready and “excellent, if not the best there are,” he told the Jakarta Post.

"Get lost, VAL."
"Get lost, VAL."

Scientists capture first-time footage of octopuses rage punching fish in the face: “These cephalopods act like localized surfers annoyed with interlopers taking their waves!”

Right in the kisser.

Ahhh nature and what a wonder it is. From the cute n cuddly pit viper to the mighty giant ground sloth, each and every creature that flies, slithers, crawls, waltzes or swims across this planet is an honest-to-goodness wonder and best/most interesting when they act like people.

Take the octopus, for instance, with its eight legs and big head. Scientists have been studying these marvels for many years and have discovered many interesting things. Most recently, they have discovered octopuses use their eight arms to rage punch fish in the face.

According a just released piece in the academic journal Ecology:

When big blue octopuses (Octopus cyanea), also known as day octopuses, are displeased with their fish partners, they demonstrate their ire by suddenly punching the fish in the head. The octopus lashes out using “a swift, explosive motion with one arm,” in an attack “which we refer to as punching,” Eduardo Sampaio, a Ph.D. student at the University of Lisbon and the Max Planck Institute of Animal Behavior wrote in a new study, continuing, “…exactly like surfers annoyed with interlopers taking their waves. The fish would get pushed to the edge of the group, or would actually leave the group. Sometimes after a while it would return, other times it would not return at all. The octopus would leave the fish alone after displacing it. Despite collaborating with fish sometimes, each partner will always try to maximize its benefits. In the cases where prey is readily available, the octopus seems to use ‘punching’ as a way to control the partner’s behavior in a self-serving way.”

Very fun and we should use these octopuses as teachers.

Speaking of, have you watched My Octopus Teacher yet?

It will punch you in the heart and make you cry.

Horrifying new image confirms that the world’s most accomplished professional surfer Kelly Slater likely drawing from dark source in exchange for perpetual youth!


Where there is smoke, there is fire, or so the saying goes and I’ve smoked enough, over the course of my life, to know this to be true. Kelly Slater’s magnificent performance at the Billabong Pipe Masters in Memory of Andy Irons presented by Hydro Flask was… magnificent.



Kelly Slater finishing third over a whole pile of the best Pipe surfers alive, all basically teenagers. An otherworldly performance only thwarted by professional surfing’s arcane rules.

But which otherworld?

And have you read Faust? The Devil and Daniel Webster? Mephisto? The collected works of Anton Szandor LaVey?

I have and know, re. “ageless” Kelly Slater, there is enough smoke around mortals making deals with Satan himself to make hellfire.

The just wrapped Billabong Pipe Masters in Memory of Andy Irons presented by Hydro Flask.

A 48-year-old schooling his children.

It don’t happen naturally and examine closely the snap of Slater schooling his child John John Florence.


I thought/think it was/is Anton Szandor LaVey too.

The Devil and Kelly Slater.

More as the story develops.

Holiday classic “Welcome to Paradise, Now Go to Hell” released as audio book for first time; narrated by “the songbird of his generation” Chas Smith!

It's the new old fashioned way.

It has become holiday tradition, in homes all over this world, to pop a Yule log in the fire, craft a fine copper pot of bubbling warm apple cider, gather the family, sit very near the Christmas tree, or menorah, and read passages, aloud, from the award-nominated Welcome to Paradise, Now Go to Hell.

The book, first released in 2013, was a sensation and documented a magical few week stretch in December on Oahu’s North Shore. All the classic seasonal characters are there, from Fast Eddie Rothman to Jamie O’Brien, current Pipe Master John John Florence to Graham Stapelberg. Each evoking that sense of wonderment and cheer.

Previously, the title had only been available in hardback, paperback and digital forms but, as of today, it is officially an audio book with author Chas Smith reading each word himself.

Come marvel at his renditions of pidgin, eastern Australian, western Australian and South African accents. Be amazed by his pronunciation of French and Hawaiian words.

Your holiday tradition will be remade as it will feel that Chas Smith is in your home, near your Christmas tree or menorah, drinking up all your delicious cider, reading those favorite passages with his iconic nasally drawl.

A new old fashioned way.

Buy here.

Australian Prime Minister hopes Covid-19 outbreak in Northern Beaches will be thwarted by fierce surf localism: “Those of you who know Sydney well know that the peninsula is a very cohesive community that tends to keep to itself!”

The "'insular peninsula."

But what was your favorite of Pipeline’s 50 heaviest moments that were showcased by our World Surf League during the just wrapped event? Chris Ward riding borrowed boards whilst putting on a tube clinic? The high-five? They were all wonderfully produced and gorgeously narrated by Ron Blakey making it difficult to pick but I, personally, enjoyed Tom Carroll’s snap (as illustrated here by the great Scott Chenoweth for Inherent Bummer).

As any halfway decent student of professional surfing history knows, Tom Carroll and his more famous brother Nick, come to us from Sydney’s Northern Beaches, a normally picturesque part of Australia now teeming with Covid-19 and under strict lockdown.

While this would, or could, worry the powers-that-be, the country’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison is not worried and mostly because of the Carrolls and their notoriously rotten, heavily-localized, attitudes.

Per the Daily Mail:

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he believes Northern Beaches locals’ reluctance to leave their region, regardless of a pandemic, will help contain the virus.

‘Those of you who know Sydney well know that the peninsula is a very cohesive community that tends to keep to itself, a bit like the (Sutherland) Shire down where I’m from,’ he said on Monday.

‘And that is certainly assisting in making sure that the Avalon outbreak is staying exactly where it is.

‘As we go into these next few days, we will be watching carefully as we endeavour to understand whether there has been further seeding, or any seeding I should say — there hasn’t been at this point — in other parts of the city.’

Chief health officer Paul Kelly agreed with the prime minister’s sentiment, and said locals on the Northern Beaches, dubbed the ‘insular peninsula,’ tend to stay in their own bubble.

Imagine thinking that Covid restrictions might present an opportunity to go surf some Northern Beaches. You pack the car, make your way in and spot a nice teepee for which to surf. You park and go to take your board off the roof when a vicious snarling sound fills the air.

A terrifying hissing.

You look all around, then down, and there, barring their teeth at your kneecaps, are the Carrolls.

Well, you would leave your board where it was, get back in and drive away as fast as legally allowed.

Super spreader event thwarted.

Better than a vaccine.