“Scrub it kook!”

The existential crisis facing surf locals post-coastal gentrification, “If this was twenty years ago we’d have knifed his tyres and beat the shit out of him. Problem is, you can’t do that sort of thing anymore”

Still, y'gotta do what y'gotta do… 

The Interloper arrived at the Rock on a Thursday. It was a quiet session. Three-to-four-foot of ESE swell, not the perfect direction. But a tide that was high enough to gloss over most faults.

Fun rights with the odd hollow section hugged the curve of the limestone outcrop, before shutting down on the inside.

There was me, Jade, Tom, and Beug – all locals – plus a handful of irregulars who knew enough to keep lineup order in check. A capacity crowd for these conditions.

I’d already been out a few hours when the Interloper first appeared.

Between sets it was easy to keep track of incoming crew. The take off spot at the Rock sat off the back of an almost exposed shelf, which itself jutted out from a deep channel below the main kunji-covered rock platform. Hidden deep inside a National Park, it was a popular spot for the local fishos, who would make the 45 minute walk in to hit the schools of whiting and yellow tail that pooled around the hidey spots. Sometimes, when the warm currents bent right into the coast, they’d even jag some bigger game.

But the fishos knew not to go overboard with their catch. There was a delicate ecosystem to be maintained. Perfected over time. Balance and order. It was what kept us in the game.

There were a few fishos on the hunt this day, with their uniform yellow jackets and white buckets. I watched as the mysterious figure with board under arm bounced between them along the platform, looking for a way in.

Even from the water I could make out his shock of curly white hair. The excitable gait. A staccato rhythm as he leapt from one rock to the next.

Enthusiasm. It was unmistakable.

I shuddered from a sudden chill.

The Interloper jumped off a weird part of the platform. Not where us locals would jump. But still not the wrong spot, either. Something about this act bothered me, though I couldn’t say what.

He made his way around the far side of the shelf. Right to the top of the queue.

He had a newish looking board. Handshaped, with a logo I didn’t recognise. Yellow with green rails. A bright blue short arm steamer. Booties. A statement in colourways.

The Interloper surveyed the crew. For some reason singled me out.

“Hey mate, how’s it going?” he asked excitedly.

It was a greeting like you’d get in one of those trendy clothing retailers. So over-friendly you’d have to second guess if you actually knew the person or not.

He couldn’t have been older than 18. A cherubic face. Bright, keen eyes. Dusting of pubescent fluff on the chin. The kid carried himself. Suggested he could surf, without actually saying it.

“Yeah alright,” I replied gruffly as I stared at the horizon.

“Looks like a couple of fun ones.”

I wasn’t sure if this is a question or a statement. I said nothing. Nor did anyone else.

“Yeah I’ve just moved here for uni from down the coast,” he continued unabated, looking straight at me. “Keen to get some waves but?”

Again he left his sentence on an upwards inflection. Intentions unknown.

“Cool.” I still had no idea what the cunt was on about. I let my eyes trail off, like I was tracking a school of baitfish just below the surface.

I caught a subtle grin from Jade.

Thankfully the awkward silence didn’t last long.

“Oh, here’s one,” said the Interloper. He swung and paddled for the first wave that came his way. Not quite a set, but probably something one of the irregulars would have gone.

“Who’s that guy?” asked Tom as we watched him race down the line and tag the end section.

“No idea. “

“Fucken lippy cunt. “

Tom was one of the middle tier locals out here. A few decades under the belt, but not quite good enough for alpha status. Still, he held enough sway. Not one to get on your bad side.

He prized his silence out here. We all did.

Like the fishos, we all came to the Rock for the hunt. Jade the former ‘Quey warrior who now ran the little cafe near the entrance to the Park and was out here most swells. Beug with his performance minimal that he still sunk to his chest, and the tattoos on his knuckles that told you all you needed to know about his past. Tom, who had no other home than here.

Each of us tied to the Rock. The better part of our lives was spent tracking it. Learning it. Best wind, best swell, best ride. How the variations of each all interplayed. Which ones would pinch. Which ones would stay open. Which ones would go dry on the inside. It wasn’t the most perfect wave in the world, or the most consistent. Only on a very particular angle and tide did it actually barrel properly. It was a hard place to get to. Required time and commitment. Mostly the Rock was frustration. Missed appointments. Broken promises. Unrealised dreams.

But every now and then, when it all came together on the right one? Sheesh, it could still be special. And most importantly, it was ours.

The Interloper paddled back out and quickly weaved his way into the queue. Beug grunted at the disruption. But before anybody can say anything another set stood up on the Indicator. This one looked good.

Tom and I nodded a silent agreement. He’d be up first and I’d take the second, which would hopefully be my last.

But the Interloper started putting himself into position too.

“Who’s up?” he asked as he paddled to the spot.

Tom shouldered in. Caught the Interloper’s leash as he was paddling.

“Farrk,” Tom crowed as he got to his feet. The wave surged. For a second he was caught in free fall. But a couple of decade’s worth of muscle memory and wave knowledge kicked in. He leaned into it, engaged the rail just at the right moment, and flew off down the line.

It was a one wave set. I was left back on point.

Unfazed, the Interloper paddled back next to me.

“Wow, that was a hell one!” he said as he watched Tom fly over the back of the end section.

I shook my head and paddled in. Did he not understand?


By Thursday night the social networks were already firing.

I got a text from Jade. She was nice enough to not say anything in the water. Plus she wasn’t really one for all our macho Darwinian bullshit. But even she knew a transgression had been committed. An upheaval in the order of things.

“If this was ten years ago he would have been sent in,” she wrote.

“Right?” I respond. “Fucken guy. You can’t do that sort of thing now though.”

“Yeah, nah.”


On Friday the waves had improved. Bigger. Better direction. The crew was solid too. Beug, Danny, Jade, Bill, Tom, Benny, Sam, myself. More than a dozen boardriders all up. No weak spots in the food chain.

On this size and tide the take off spot shifted over to a roll-in, deeper on the platform. Everybody schooled onto the one spot, concentrating the hierarchy even more. The thick knit of black wetsuits and white boards floated over waves like a bed of kelp.

The Interloper appeared again amongst the fishos. We watched as he jumped off at that same weird spot, and snaked around the inside, under the pack.

“Hey guys!” he said to nobody in particular.

A few grunts, but mostly silence.

“Wow, looking pretty good again!”

Just like the day before, another small one popped up right in front of him. He took it without question.

We all watched the rooster tails as he made his way down the line. He could surf.

“Is that little cunt?” asked Noah, a wild-eyed veteran from the pre-gentrification days.

Word was already out.

“If this was fifteen years ago I would have slashed his tyres.”

Heads nodded furiously in agreement.

“Can’t do that sort of thing now but,” said Beug.

“Yeah, nah.”

The Interloper made his way out and darted back into the queue, oblivious to the eyes on him. Silly grin on his face.

“Fuck I love this wave!” he yells.

Tom looks at me, aghast. “Loves it?” he says.

I shrug my shoulders. Another cardinal sin to add to his list.

A serious set appeared off the Indicator. The wall of water slowed almost to a standstill as it surged off the back of the Rock. This was it. The type of wave this place made its name from. The infinitely scarce resource that sustained the whole ecosystem.

The pack bristled in anticipation.

Noah was up. But again the Interloper moved into the spot.

“No you dont, cunt,” hissed Noah.

He paddled directly into the Interloper, pushing him too deep. So deep that even Noah was out of position. They both missed the roll-in and were forced to duck dive under the next one as the wave reeled off unridden.

“What was that for?” asked the Interloper as they paddled back to the spot.

“Wasn’t your turn,” said Noah.

“Yeah but you fucked it. Now no one gets it.”

Silence fell over the crowd. Noah was not the sort of person to talk back to.

“Doesn’t matter. Wasn’t your turn.”

Noah’s nostrils flared. For a second the only noise was his heavy breathing and the far off chatter of the fishos up on the platform.

The Interloper looked like he was about to say something. Formulating a comeback. Who knew what might happen next. It was the type of moment that could make or break a lifetime at a place like this.

From the channel came a violent splash. A flash of white and silver broke through the surface then disappeared, leaving a trail of foam in its wake. There’d been reports of marlin straying into the coast in the last few days. Hitting the balls of trevally that had been popping up around the place.

The commotion attracted a rush of fishos to the edge of the platform, yelling and pointing and flinging their reels.

The Interloper looked over to the channel before slinking back to his spot underneath the rest of the pack, his decision made.

He might have been young, but he knew enough.


That night I got a call from Bruno. One of the elders of the Rock who pioneered it back in the ‘70s. He hardly surfed now but his counsel still held as much clout as anyone still out there.

“Heard there’s been some strife out,” he said in his gruff voice. He didn’t mince his words.

“Yep. The kid looks nice enough. But he’s really getting under people’s skin. He just doesn’t know the rules.”

Bruno didn’t say anything. For a moment I thought I might have lost him.

“What we do about it?” I asked.

Finally he spoke.

“Look, if this was twenty years ago we’d have knifed his tyres and beat the shit out of him so bad he’d never make the trek back in. Problem is, you can’t do that sort of thing anymore.”

“Nah.” I sighed. “Yeah nah Bruno, I know.”

“Let’s see what happens tomorrow. But listen.” He pauses again for emphasis. “I think you know what you need to do.”

The phone line clicked.


Saturday morning. The sun blazed. Light offshore breezes lit up the Rock. The surf was pumping. A red letter day. The full crew was out. All the alphas. The line up was abuzz with the swell. But also news of the Interloper.

“I heard he called Noah a cunt.”

“I heard he burned Tom three sets in a row.”

“I heard he knocked off one of the fishos reels on the way in.”

“He even said he loved the place!”

“It wasn’t quite that bad,” I said. “But I spoke to Bruno last night about it. The kid still needs to be taught a lesson.”

“If this was thirty years ago we would have shoved him in the tinny and skull dragged him out to the continental shelf,” offered Benny the kneelo, a living relic from a bygone era.

“You can’t do that now though,” replied Tom. “Remember what happened to Pooly. You even put a hand on a kid and you’re looking at charges from the parents.

“So fucken what? Who out here is going to rat?”

“Yeah but he’s still only young, you gotta give him a chance…”

The conversation became so involved, so furious, that many of the smaller sets went through unridden. Noah even blew the takeoff on a set. First time I’d ever seen him do it.

The irregulars were having a field day a little further down the line.

It was undeniable. There was a funk running through the pack. A schism. Order has been upended.

By mid morning, just as the tide was reaching its peak, the Interloper appeared again on the shelf like a midnight spectre.

“Here he is.”

“Where’s he jumping off?” said Benny incredulously. “What the fuck’s he think he’s doing?”

The Interloper made his way around to the pack. A pod of dolphins darted past, shooting up specks of diamonds on the sun-lit sea.

“Fuck it, I’ll take the cunt myself,” said Noah, just as the Interloper came to within earshot. “To hell with the coppers.”

But something stirred up inside me.

Maybe it was the fact the kid could surf. The fact he was young, and still had time to learn the ropes. Maybe it was the fact half the crew out here didn’t want any business with filing police reports. Myself included.

Maybe it was that stupid smile.

“Noah,” I said forcefully. “Not today.”

I paddled over to meet the Interloper before he could reach the pack. For his own safety as much as anything else.

“Hey buddy, come here.”

“Oh, hey bro!” he said enthusiastically. “Looks pumping today, but?”

I shook my head at the non sequitur.

“Look kid, I need to have a word with you.”

Sat up on my board so I was right alongside him.

“You seem nice enough. You can obviously surf. But you gotta understand there’s rules out here.”

The Interloper started to respond, a confused look on his face.


“Let me finish. You can’t just traipse into the Rock like you own it. This is a special place.”

I motioned to the line up, to the surge, to the rock platform and the fishos beyond.

“You come out here with your smiles and your bright wetty and your jumping at every wave. It makes the crew nervous.”

“Yeah, but-”

“Hey. I’m still going. If you want to surf out here. If you want to really get to know the place.You need to put in time. You need to respect the law. You gotta be more like us.”

I pointed to the crew.

“See these guys? We’ve all been out here for decades. We’re not lairy. We’re not colourful. We don’t disrupt.”

A swell line passed under us, bringing us nearer again.

“We’re cool, kid. Real cool. Like barnacles. Only one part removed from the kunji back up on that platform.”

I saddled up real close to him. So close I could smell whatever cheap shampoo it was that he ran through that mop of white hair.

“Out here,” I said, almost in a whisper. “We don’t like change. There’s a place for everything, and everything in its place.”

His cherubic face melted. His brow furrowed. He looked like he’d just been told he’d never surf again.

“But –

I shook my head and pointed to the end of the pack. Down past the irregulars.

He followed the path of my hand, his whole body shaking at realisation. Processing what it all meant. The end of the line. The Interloper turned back to me. Looked like he might cry.

But I stared him down, with a dozen identical pairs of eyes behind me.

The Interloper got the message. He paddled to the back of the queue.


It’s five years later now. I’m still at the Rock. The surf is firing. Another red letter day. And we’re all out. Ronnie, Jade, Noah, the kneelo, Tom.

Even the Interloper. He’s sitting in the middle of the queue. Above the irregulars but still behind the alphas. His enthusiasm has disappeared. The spark in his eye is gone. You wouldn’t recognise him if you didn’t already know. There’s no hint of a grin now on his weathered face. Black wetsuit. White board. Shaved head. He’s waiting his turn patiently.

Assimilated into the pack.

The fishoes are out, chasing a school of tailor. One of them has just jagged something decent when we see a figure appear on the platform. Bright wetsuit. Loud board. Unidentified.

We watch as the figure makes its way across the rocks. Heads to that same weird part of the platform to jump off.

I turn to the Interloper. He knows what’s expected.

He nods back at me with his dead eyes.

Looks to the unknown figure now he says: “Who’s this cunt think he is,”

Though it’s so quiet I can barely hear it. I turn back to the horizon with a smile on my face.

A place for everything and everything in its place.

World Surf League CEO Erik Logan completes transition to heartthrob, becomes November centerfold for hometown “Southbay Magazine” with smoldering yet wistful stare, delicately dripping Caesar haircut!

Hot, hot heat.

Oh but to be Erik Logan. The World Surf League’s CEO has had a year so utterly fabulous, so completely successful as to beg for suspension of disbelief. From hosting the universally applauded Final’s Day there on Lower Trestles’ cobbled stone to emerging from a cocoon of Sally Jessy Raphael as a fully-formed “sexy cocaine cowboy” to, now, gracing the cover of his hometown Southbay Magazine which will certainly be torn off and tacked up to walls of lonely housewives from Redondo to Del Aire.

A heartthrob.

An undeniable heartthrob.

Southbay, which aspires to “capture the essence of the South Bay defined by its people, ideas, arts and issues of the day” announced the cover boy and centerfold thusly: “For Erik Logan, Becoming the CEO of the World Surf League Was a Serendipitous Journey. Read more about him in the cover story of our November issue!”

Logan, responded that he was “humbled beyond words.”

The feature tracks the brave face of professional surfing growing up “in a landlocked state” and being “terrified of the ocean. I wouldn’t go in. In fact, I wouldn’t go in lakes if I couldn’t see the bottom.”

The terror was due the movie Jaws.

But as we know, his wife bought him a wetsuit that soon became a “suit of armor” and here we are today.

You can, and must, read the story in its entirety but like all centerfolds, the pictures are the juice.

Do yourself a favor and don’t click in front of wife, significant other.

Certainly too much heat.

Well-known pro surfer-shaper avoids jail after being busted with “hundreds of sick images of children being raped and abused in other unthinkable ways.”

“By downloading and amassing a collection of indecent images, (he) has played a part in fuelling a horrific industry.”

The twelve-time British champion surfer and shaper Lee Bartlett has pleaded guilty to three charges of making indecent images of children. 

Bartlett, who is fifty, was charged with having 183 Category A images, 244 Category B images and 177 Category C images, collected over a two-year period from 2018 to 2020. 

The “sick haul” included “images of children being raped and abused in other unthinkable ways.”

Bartlett got eight months behind bars, which was suspended for two years. As well, he has to go through a 40-day rehabilitation, do 100 hours of unpaid work and be on the sex offenders’ register for ten years. 

“By downloading and amassing a collection of indecent images, Bartlett has played a part in fuelling a horrific industry,” a spokesperson for the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children said. “The children in content like this are the victims of child sexual abuse, which can ruin the lives of the youngest members of our society. More needs to be done by technology companies and social network sites to prevent the publication and distribution of materials like this.”

Reaction online when the story came out on Cornwall Live was, predictably I guess, pretty rough.

“Slit the f ers throat.”

“Stop animal testing… test on the likes of him.”

“This vile human is no longer welcome surfing any beach in Cornwall.”

“Bring back the death penalty for sick individuals like this. Just a drain on society. To think of all those poor abused children makes my stomach churn and heart ache. I’d happily flip the switch, or pull the rope. It’s about time victims, And potential victims are protected from the likes of these monsters.”

Pretty wild to read the list of recent courses at the local court, rape, pedophilia, stranglings and so on.

“Illegal puppy breeder unmasked as sex fiend who abused girl in horse box” is just one spectacularly vivid headline from the house of horrors.

Not the greatest advertisement for Cornwall and surrounds.

Sense and sensibility.
Sense and sensibility.

Jane Fonda headlines anti-offshore drilling protest in oil-slicked Laguna Beach, urges fiery supporters not to blame oil and gas workers: “They work in an industry that helped build this country!”

Famous movie star and social activist Jane Fonda turned out a crowd hundreds strong in Laguna Beach, yesterday, in order to protest off-shore oil drilling. Rage percolated amongst those who gathered on the recently oil-slicked shoreline that had just re-opened after a burst pipeline spewed over 144,000 gallons of Texas tea in into the Pacific off Huntington Beach to the north.

“Here in Laguna Beach, we have taken for granted our pristine coast, but sadly our bubble has burst by this horrific and inevitable oil spill,” Judie Mancuso, founder and president of Social Compassion in Legislation, a nonprofit organization that promotes animal rights bills, exclaimed as she began whipping up furor ahead of Fonda. “There is so much at stake already for our threatened marine wildlife.”

State Sen. Dave Min, Democrat from Irvine, came next, hotly raising the temperature to near fever by calling offshore oil derricks “menaces” and vowing to introduce a bill that would end offshore drilling forevermore.

“Even if you’re not an environmentalist, the case for ending offshore drilling is an easy one,” he said. “Oil drilling off the coast of California accounts for less than 0.3% of all U.S. oil production. It’s not even a drop in the bucket. Meanwhile, our coastal economy — based on these beautiful beaches behind me up and down the coastline — accounts for $44 billion a year, employing over a half-million Californians.”

The crowd, bearing fangs, reaching for pitchforks, was ready to take matters into its own hands when Fonda took the stage and cooled everyone right back to sensibility, urging love and respect toward gas and oil workers.

“They work in an industry that helped build this country,” the Barbarella star said. “We must not blame them. The oil and gas and coal that exists that is not being used is called stranded assets. The workers must never be stranded assets.”

While the environmentalists became lightly pacified, dropping tiki torches to the ground, a small gathering across the street began shouting that Fonda was a traitor. Oh, not because of her kind words toward roughnecks but because of that one time she went to Vietnam and sat in a North Vietnamese anti-aircraft gun.

The Hanoi Jane years.

Long memories.

Surfline Man does not want to look like a full-on amateur kook at the gym. That would be so embarrassing like high school all over again. Surfline Man shudders. 

Surfline Man builds fitness in readiness for big winter swells: “There’s a BJJ studio nearby, but it all sounds so sweaty. Also, he has trouble with the name. It just looks so much like blowjob.”

The winter swells are coming! Surfline Man has to do something! He can’t just sit here on the couch.

The winter swells are coming.

Every day, Surfline Man looks at the forecasts and every day, there’s a big swell on the models, just taunting him. It’s ten days out.

Now it’s fourteen days out.

Now it’s gone.

Now it’s back. 

Eventually, that giant swell will appear right here at his favorite beach. Just imagine! Swell lines stacked up to the horizon. Overhead sets. Dreamy green walls. Maybe he’ll even get barrelled. Surfline Man feels giddy just thinking about it. 

But there’s one problem. Surfline Man isn’t even ready for the big winter swells. 

For one thing, he needs a new board. He’s a good surfer now, and if there’s one thing Surfline Man knows, it’s that all good surfers have a step-up. Surfline Man does not have a step-up. 

At least not yet.

But Surfline Man is totally going to get one. Maybe something with more rocker. 

A guy in the parking lot was telling him all about his new board and how it had like, the perfect rocker. Surfline Man wasn’t about to confess that he has no idea what rocker is or how it works, but it sure did sound important. 

Maybe later he’ll cruise to the surf shop. Rocker. It even sounds fast. Surfline Man wants to go so fast on the big winter waves. He’s certain it’s going to be the best winter ever. 

But first, Surfline Man needs to get fit. Back in his San Clemente days, his ex-girlfriend used to drag him to the gym. He hated it, mostly. But it did keep him from turning into a total slacker and getting like, flabby and stuff.

Ever since he moved to Cardiff, Surfline Man has been slacking off on the whole work-out and healthy eating thing. He had big plans to go to yoga with the cute girl from the Swamis parking lot. Too bad he never got around to it. 

And sure, he gets on the ebike sometimes, but even Surfline Man knows that the ebike is not going to get him fit for the winter swells. 

Surfline Man needs a plan. He needs to get fit like, so fast right now. Hopefully, the internet can save Surfline Man from his bad decisions just like it has so many times before. 

Everywhere he goes on the internet, Surfline Man sees ads for Whoop. He loves how his favorite brands follow him around now. It’s so nice having friends wherever he goes. He doesn’t understand what a Whoop is, or what it does, but if surfers are using Whoop, it must be cool. 

Surfline Man is pretty sure he should get one. He punches Whoop into Google.

Oh, a Whoop will get him fit. This is so perfect right now. And there’s like a club he can join and coaching! His ex was crazy about Peloton and all the classes and instructors and stuff. She talked about them all the time, like they were her besties. 

Surfline Man knows himself. He’s not good at getting off the couch. Like, he will totally win the recovery part of training. But maybe if he has a coach he can do the sweaty stuff, too. Surfline Man can’t type his credit card number fast enough. 

While he waits for his new Whoop, which he’s pretty sure is going to change his life completely, Surfline Man figures he better get started with some training. It would be super bad for his morale if his numbers were all low. He wants to come flying into his Whoop training like a pro. 

What to do. There’s a BJJ studio nearby, but it all sounds so sweaty. Also, he has trouble with the name. It just looks so much like blowjob. He can’t even get past it. Surfline Man knows he should be better than this. But he’s totally not. 

Then Surfline Man has an idea. He should get fit the old-fashioned way. Go to the gym, and pump some iron. Surfline Man is going to get pumped up! Just like Arnold! He’s going to put on his lululemon and go to the gym, and get so jacked. He’s going to be so ready for the winter swells. 

Flipping through his phone, Surfline Man finds a gym. He squeezes into his lululemon and realizes that in fact, his fitness plan is just a little overdue. Even more determined than ever, Surfline Man fills his newest Hydroflask and grabs an organic food bar. 

Then Surfline Man realizes that he has no idea what to do at a gym. 

Back to the internet. Surfline Man plops down on the couch and pops open his laptop. Core work-outs. He’s pretty sure core strength is super important for surfing the big winter swells. Only Google can save him. 

Men’s Health. That sounds right. He is a man, and he is really into his health right now. Surfline Man feels like he is getting closer. The internet totally gets him.

25 Best Ab Work-Outs. Surfline Man is shocked. 25! That is so many ab work-outs. He had no idea that getting pumped up was so complicated. Arnold made it all sound so easy. Surfline Man feels like he has so much to learn. This whole fitness thing has more moving parts than the perfect cutback. 

Just then his phone buzzes. 

meeting up for beers later

wanna join?

nah i’m trying to cut back

gotta get fit for winter

getting on the whoop program and all

whoa badass

good luck with all that

Surfline Man is motivated. Look at him, skipping beers, making good choices! 

But he has to confess that he did not expect there to be 25 ab work-outs. He is going to have to study hard before he goes to the gym. Surfline Man does not want to look like a full-on amateur kook at the gym. That would be so embarrassing like high school all over again. Surfline Man shudders. 

The winter swells are coming! Surfline Man has to do something! He can’t just sit here on the couch. He needs to be fit and strong and prepared to surf his new surfboard, that he hasn’t bought yet, that will definitely have the most rocker. 

What in the world is he going to do now? Definitely, he is not prepared for the gym. 

Running. Surfline Man figures anyone can go running. With renewed motivation, Surfline Man bounds off the couch. Something in his hip or maybe his knee goes pop. Damn, he really does need to exercise. Well, he’s going to do that right now. He is so going to crush this run. 

Surfline Man rummages around in his closet for a pair of shoes. He really doesn’t have any shoes for running or going to the gym. Mentally, he adds shoes to his shopping list. He’s pretty sure his new besties at Men’s Health can help him solve this dilemma. 

Surfline Man unearths a pair of broken-in Vans. They don’t exactly scream athlete, but Surfline Man knows he has to start somewhere. He laces them up, and straps his phone to his arm. Playlist, baby! Surfline Man doesn’t know much about running, but he’s pretty sure he needs the right playlist to make it happen.

On the way out, Surfline Man grabs an old Vans hat and slaps it on his head. Surfline Man feels so good now. He likes his brands to match. He wonders if Vans makes work-out clothes. That would be so cool. Turning his Vans hat backwards, Surfline Man is so ready now. 

Out the front door, into the bright fall sunlight, Surfline Man bounds down the sidewalk toward the ocean. He’s going running and he’s going to run straight down to the beach. 

Surfline Man feels so free! He’s pretty sure he’s going to get this fitness thing dialed in no time at all. 

Then he remembers. Running hurts. It hurts so much. Surfline Man is pretty sure he’s been running for like, an hour already. The beach does not look any closer than it did when he left his driveway. His legs feel totally broken. And his lungs! His lungs, they burn! They burn so much. 

It’s really hard to breath right now and Surfline Man is pretty sure he is going to pass out right here on the sidewalk in Cardiff, not that far — but still way too far away — from the beach. 

Surfline Man catches sight of himself in a store window. He looks sweaty and disheveled and not even cool at all. 

His side! It’s so cramped right now! 

Surfline Man wants to lie down on the sidewalk. He’s pretty sure running was not his best idea ever. Clearly, he needs to prepare more carefully before attempting more fitness stuff. Surfline Man is certain the right shoes will totally help. 

Surfline Man turns around and heads home. It turns out that he has not traveled super far at all. He refuses to be depressed by his lack of progress. Surfline Man caught a wave at Malibu! He is pretty sure he can totally figure out how to get fit in time for the winter swells. 

Back home, Surfline Man bops into the kitchen. He doesn’t know much about fitness, at least not yet. But he does know that it’s very important to eat protein after a hard work-out. He nearly passed out on the sidewalk, so he’s pretty sure his run counts.

Digging around in his pantry, Surfline Man finds a half-forgotten canister of whey protein. He throws a healthy dose of protein in the blender. Then he adds kale, almond milk, peanut butter, blueberries, and a banana. All his favorite things! Surfline Man is eating so healthy now. 

Surfline Man kicks off his shoes, and heads back to the couch. He puts up his legs, which he’s pretty sure is important for recovery. He can’t even wait to figure out how to do fitness right. 

Surfline Man opens his laptop. The 21 Best Running Shoes for 2021. Yes! This is exactly what he needs. Surfline Man is going totally going to crush at running now!

His phone buzzes. 


Surfline Man flips over to Surfline and quickly scans the text. Solid NW headed straight for the California coast. 

A winter swell! Surfline Man suddenly feels light-headed. He takes a deep breath. He’s like so close to passing out on his couch and drowning in his protein smoothie. 

Seven days! Surfline Man only has seven days to get fit for the first swell of the winter. He doesn’t even know how he’s going to do it. And, he needs to find a new step-up surfboard with so much rocker. 

Surfline Man has way too much to do. Surfing is so important to him. It’s completely vital that he is totally ready the day the big swell arrives. He opens Google Calendar and marks the date. 

On a mission, Surfline Man heads out to the Sprinter.

He must get to the surf shop right away. He needs a step-up and he needs it right now. He only has seven days until the first big swell of the winter!

Surfline Man has no time to lose!