“Chilling, profoundly disturbing” occultist roots of stand-up paddleboarding exposed in Southern California as witches and warlocks “trade brooms for paddles” on Samhain!

What evil lurks in the heart of man...

Oh but I do trust that you had an enjoyable evening last night celebrating Halloween with children, friends, loved ones. And did you dress up yourself? Play some whimsical character? Take the little ones door to door for candied treats whilst chatting with the neighbors for the first, and only, time of the year? Go out to a “grown-up” party featuring many naughty kittens and naughty nurses? Fireball whiskey cocktails?

Or are you a very scary necromancer who practices dark magick, lets the evil Ouija board guide your steps, and spent Samhain stand-up paddleboarding with likeminded Satanists?

Redondo Beach’s Daily Breeze is reporting that the chilling, profoundly disturbing occultist roots of SUPing were put on display, yesterday, in the town’s marina.

Dress in black, don a pointy witch’s hat, grab a stand-up board and a paddle — one that can be easily mistaken in the fog as a broom.

It’s the perfect tableau for a spooky Halloween scene.

Organizer Erin Hansen summoned water-loving witches and warlocks for the second annual South Bay Witches Paddle on Halloween day. The Redondo Beach resident had the idea to create the coven last year after seeing a post about a similar event in Morro Bay.

And the idea took off.

To add to the magic, Hansen held a witches costume contest via social media.

Hansen, a sixth-grade math teacher at Chadwick School on Palos Verdes Peninsula, said that since last Halloween came amid the heart of the coronavirus pandemic, seeing everyone on the water, safely having fun, made the inaugural Witches Paddle a gratifying experience.


As you may, or may not, know, Redondo Beach is next door to Manhattan Beach and Manhattan Beach is home to SUP aficionado, and CEO of the World Surf League, Erik Logan.

Does the idea of The Ultimate Surfer make more sense now?


Applying linguistics.

Question: Why do surfers insist on perpetually tacking the suffix “-land” onto the abbreviated word “combo?”

Welcome to Comboland.

Of all the many gifts orbiting in my personal constellation, the fact that I am an applied linguist, by training, often gets lost but I am and it’s true. A master of applied linguistics, even, and, anyhow, I am always paying attention to the words and phrases floating through our shared space.

Words and phrases that inspire like “hand jam.”

Words and phrases that completely annoy like “comboland.”

Surfline just released a duet, Comboland, Part One: Orange County + San Diego and Comboland, Part Two: LA – North featuring images, I’d imagine of the just-passed combination swell (coming from both north and south) that lit up our shores.



Any time a professional surfer enters that precarious position, in a heat, wherein she needs a combination of two scores in order to advance, then she has also entered comboland.



It is as if the surfer tongue is completely unable to utter the word “combo” without affixing “land” but why?

A deep etymological search reveals the word “comboland” is only used outside our surf world to describe the musical acts arising out of North Carolina between 1981 and 1984. The Spongetones and Fabulous Knobs etc.

I can’t imagine Joe Turpel is thinking about the X-Teens when describing a scoring situation Nat Young often finds himself in nor can I imagine the Surfline’s editorial staff listening to Luky Owen and Revolver when running headlines up the mast.



So annoying but while you’re here, please enjoy some comboland rock.

Koa Smith, too beautiful for this world!

Dirty Water: Ultimate Surfer #2 Koa Smith sends blunt message to WSL CEO over wildcard brouhaha, “Elo, you know what to [email protected] do. You saw what I can do! Put me in, Teahupoo, Pipe, Portugal, G-Land, I’ll take some monsters down. Let’s [email protected] go!”

The hype and the heat is real!

Today’s guest on Dirty Water is the three-time NSSA champ and runner-up to Zeke Lau’s Ultimate Surfer, Koa Smith.

Smith, born in Kauai and a student of Bruce and Andy Irons, surfs with the contented and dreamy look of the female suckling her young as he dominates some of the best waves in the world including, but not limited to Teahupoo, Skeleton Bay and Pipeline.

He is also a prized fashion model, although that, as Smith explains, has its dark side.

While it would be better, I think, for our guest to just marry a nice, clean girl from a good family and settle down on a ranch in the hills of Kauai, he is hellbent on dragging himself around the loathsome WSL tour.

Charlie and I asked, why?


Facebook founder, Kauai local, Mark Zuckerberg continues to culturally appropriate surf by naming latest product offering “Nazare” after famous Portuguese big wave!


The world’s fifth richest man, friend of Kai Lenny, Mark Zuckerberg made news, days ago, by announcing that his company Facebook would be changing its name to “Meta” with a video release featuring himself achieving second place to the aforementioned Lenny in a “very cool” foil game.

Today, he reveals a new product offering, a Google Glass-esque something rather named Nazare after the famous Portuguese town, wave pioneered by fellow Hawaiian Garrett McNamara.

Per the industry publication Upload:

Alongside the reveal of the new Project Cambria VR headset, Meta (formerly Facebook) just gave a codename to its first pair of consumer AR glasses. Meet Project Nazare.

A demo video of Nazare showed some familiar AR experiences, like communicating with friends in virtual windows and even playing multiplayer with avatars appearing in the user’s living room. There was no actual picture of the hardware itself, but expect more information in the future.

Are you stung by your culture being appropriated by “big tech” or happy and honored?


Say it loud and there’s music playing etc.

Circus Circus.

Scientists determine that Great White Sharks are “boorish clods” with “unrefined visual palettes” that can’t tell the difference between delicately exquisite seals and gamey, greasy surfers!

Brutish churls.

For many years, now, scientists have wondered why Great White Sharks so viciously and savagely attack surfers in the water when surfer meat is widely known to be “gross” and “yucky” filled with many vaccines and/or theories about vaccines. No species on earth enjoys surfer so why, then, do sharks bite?

New research, just out, may provide the answer, suggesting that Great Whites, particularly baby Great Whites, are boorish clods with unrefined eyes that simply can’t tell the difference between seals, surfers or even swimmers.

Per the report:

Recent investigations into shark vision have expanded scientists’ understanding of how the cartilaginous predators see their environment: probably in grayscale and with a minimal ability to see detail. To try to see the world as a shark, Ryan said to imagine taking your eye examination underwater without goggles; things are a little less sharp. As such, the visual cues a hunting shark most relies on are probably motion and brightness contrast.

Spurred by this knowledge, the researchers did an experiment. From the bottom of aquariums at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney, the researchers attached a GoPro to an underwater scooter traveling at the speed of a cruising shark. They recorded videos of two sea lions, one fur seal, swimming people and people paddling on three different types of surfboards (the boards came from the personal collection of Ryan, who surfs).

Ryan and colleagues edited the GoPro footage in a computer program to translate the lens of a video camera to the retinas of a young white shark. They stripped the video of some color and rotated them all so the overhead objects moved from the bottom to the top of the screen. Then the researchers ran the videos through a series of statistical analyses at a range of resolutions to glean whether a juvenile white shark might be able to discern between the objects.

In the shark’s-eye view, the researchers found no significant difference between a swimming person, a paddling surfer or a meandering seal or sea lion. Ryan said she was surprised that sharks might confuse even a swimming person without a surfboard with a seal.

Quite basically, sharks are like tourists from Australia’s Gold Coast who prefer to eat at the Circus Circus buffet, when visiting Las Vegas, instead of the Michelin-starred Restaurant Guy Savoy.

Brutish churls.