America? F*ck yeah.
I don’t know this for a fact, or because I have spoken to Kolohe lately, but his recent interview absolutely torching the World Surf League’s new and ill-considered format on Brazilian media made me fall in love with him once again.
The two of us have history which you may, or may not, be aware of.
I first interviewed him for a feature on proto-Stab Premium decades ago, taking him to the Ritz-Carlton overlooking Salt Creek, ordered some vodka thing and asking if he wanted the same.
He said, “No. I’m 14.”
On the way home he added, “Don’t worry. I won’t tell my dad you tried to buy me booze.”
Later, after the success of Red Bull’s greatest surf film of all-time, Who is JOB, I secured a Red Bull Kolohe Andino film wherein he would be depicted at the end of his career. Many substance abuse issues, broke, living in his mother’s basement.
We shot the first scene and did not receive any more funding. I have it somewhere and it’s brilliant.
But Kolohe is us.
He always has been.
And him ripping in to the new WSL format re-re-re-confirms. He wants a title, an actual title, not some random win at Lowers on some random day.
He, like us, knows “it takes a tour to make a title.”
He, like a phoenix from the ashes is our new North Star.
Did you ever think the lame “takes a tour…” tagline would actually sum up what we’re all about?
David Lee and I also discuss revolutionizing the whole game by sponsoring Caio Ibelli.
The best surfer in the world?
A tight race between he and Kolohe.