Expert in the field of male public slappings weighs in on recent Will Smith vs. Chris Rock imbroglio: “It is ultra-confusing to be slapped by a grown man in front of others with basically all responses being mostly wrong!”

At the outset, let me clarify that my response to being slapped across the lower ear by then Stab editor-in-Chief Ashton Goggans at Surf Expo in Orlando, Florida was all wrong. I didn’t even know what had happened, at first, just knew that my vintage Ray-Ban sunglasses were no longer providing cool relief to the harsh fluorescent lighting overhead.

But something clearly had happened. I had stroked Goggans decidedly soft beard then lost my sunglasses. A slap. I had been slapped, deservedly but it should have been a punch, and the information was slow to process so I simply began dancing with him.

Wrong move and as an expert in the field of male public slappings, I feel uniquely qualified to weigh in on the Will Smith vs. Chris Rock imbroglio that is still gripping polite conversation.

Now, if Smith would have taken the stage and punched Rock in the mouth things would have been very different. A punch can only be responded to with a punch. But a slap? Dicey. Rock would have been very much in his right to sock Smith in the mouth but Smith had already turned around and returned to his seat. Rock would have had to chase him down and force a confrontation he wasn’t looking for in the first place. That would have been weird. He could have chased Smith down and slapped him back but that would have been weirder. He could have egged him on from stage, causing Smith to return to finish his business but that would have been awkward to the max.


No good options and always the messy threat of law intervention. The only way it could have worked is if Smith would and punched Rock or slapped him later out of camera view then leaked to the tabloids that he had taken care of business. Or do you consider yourself more an expert in being publicly slapped by a male than me?

Is there another way that I’m too cockeyed to see?

David Lee Scales and I discuss in length alongside Zoltan Torkos’ return to fame and bodyboarders being the most progressive of our brethren which actually turned out to be an April Fool’s joke.

Enjoy here.

Boukhiam, centre, with his Moroccan flag and Magen David trophy. | Photo: WSL

Beacon of hope: Moroccan Muslim Ramzi Boukhiam poses with Jewish shield of David following historic surfing contest win as Israeli streets redden with blood following “pitiless slaughter” by jihadists in multiple attacks!

The win comes on the 20th anniversary of Hamas' Passover Massacre when thirty Jews were murdered by a suicide bomber at Netanya's Park Hotel…

Maybe y’didn’t hear or read about the multiple jihadist attacks turning the streets of Israel red with blood over the past week:  eleven dead as jihadists used machine guns and knives to keep true to their long-held promise, to rid the world of the dirty Jew. 

As Hamas’ Fathi Hammad put it so delicately in 2019, “There are Jews everywhere. We must attack every Jew on planet Earth! We must slaughter and kill them, with Allah’s help. We will lacerate and tear them to pieces.”

The holiness of hatred etc. 

Anyway, after a two-year hiatus the World Surf League returned to Israel, the Netanya Pro finishing on Sunday with Moroccan-born Muslim Ramzi Boukhiam scooping up the win and eight thousand American dollars. 

The win was historic for a few reasons. 

First, Boukhiam flew to Israel…directly… from Casablanca on a Royal Air Maroc flight, the first from that country since relations were normalised a couple of years back.See, it ain’t the done thing for an Islamic country to allow the Jewish pig on his soil, even to fly over it, as evidenced by the zig-zagging an El Al flight gotta do to get anywhere. 

Second, when Boukhiam won the event a bunch of local Jewish kids swiped a Moroccan flag for the champ to hold on stage, along with his “Magen David” trophy, literally shield of David, or what we call the Star of David. 

Hitler and his Nazis made Jews wear the six-pointed star so they could be easily be identified, rounded-up, slaughtered. Hence, it’s since become a symbol of heroism, strength and solidarity.

Third, when Boukhiam was being chaired up the beach, the DJ threw on Arabic music. Flip the scenario and y’can’t exactly imagine a Jewish surfer being carted up the sand to the sound of Hava Nagila in Indonesia. 

“A Muslim Arab being carried to the sound of Arabic music on Israeli soil, it was the most positive vibe ever,” says Surfing 4 Peace’s Arthur Rashkoven. “I was fucking hooting and screaming. It was truly special.” 

The win came on the twentieth anniversary of Hamas’ Passover Massacre when thirty Jews were murdered by a suicide bomber at Netanya’s Park Hotel just up the road from where the contest was held.

Rashkoven, who lives by Doc Paskowitz’s maxim that “people who surf together can live together” says, “I was in tears when he was waving his Moroccan flag. It was unbelievable. For a moment time stood still for me. I shed a lot of tears on the podium.” 

Boukhiam was gone by the time the jihadists started to run wild and now Rashkoven is waiting, fearfully, for what happens next. 

“It’s ISIS-style terror. The authorities don’t know how to deal with it. It caught us by complete surprise. It’s never easy.”

Rashkoven is talking to me from outside his kids’ school. I tell him it must be wild leaving his kids alone when he knows there are men and women out there who’d be celebrated if they were to murder his children. 

“It’s hard, we never feel safe. People don’t know whether to go out. And what is the government going to do? Are we going full throttle against it? Escalate into another war? Such a delicate situation, really hard to understand what is going to happen.” 

In New York City, there are calls to “globalise the intifada”.


Meanwhile, in Gaza, West Bank etc, delicious candies are handed out in the streets to celebrate the murders. 

Happy place.
Happy place.

World’s fifth richest man Mark Zuckerberg opens up about toll low-integrity journalists take on his emotional health, shares secret to dealing with pain: “When you’re on the board, you’re focused on making sure you stay on the board and don’t mess something up.”

Living the surf-adjacent life.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, by all appearances, lives a gilded life. The world’s fifth richest man has a palatial Kauai spread, a best friend in Kai Lenny and a Caesar haircut that shows no sign of recession. But Zuckerberg is still human-adjacent, still leaks oil, has been programmed to feel like you or me and sometimes those feelings get hurt.

In a recent interview with Tim Ferriss, the popular podcaster and lifestyle guru, Zuckerberg responded to the question “how have you become comfortable with discomfort” thusly according to Business Insider:

The Meta CEO said he wakes up each morning to emails about what’s happening internally at Meta, along with the news of the day — all of which often includes “a fair amount of bad news and new things that I need to absorb,” he said.

If he goes straight into his day after that, “it’s almost like getting punched with a ton of new context,” Zuckerberg said.

To avoid that feeling, he’s started surfing or foiling — riding a hydrofoil board, which lifts you above the surface of the water — to take his mind off things for an hour or so.

“When you’re out there in the water, it’s pretty hard to focus on anything else,” Zuckerberg said. “When you’re on the board, you’re focused on making sure you stay on the board and don’t mess something up.”

When he returns to work afterward, he feels like the news has settled in and he’s ready to deal with whatever’s going on that day — stewing in bad news makes him less productive, he told Ferriss.

What in the world does “getting punched with a ton of new context” mean?

Mark Zuckerberg is almost people.

“Dennis Hopper tore an Andy Warhol painting off his wall and replaced it with my Jaws tow board!” says big-wave icon Ross “Mad Dog” Clarke-Jones.

Mad Dog Hopper meets Mad Dog Ross.

The American actor, Dennis Hopper, most famous for his helium inhaling Frank “Don’t you fucking look at me” Booth in the 1986 psychological thriller Blue Velvet, ripped an Andy Warhol painting from the wall of his house and replaced it with a tow-board, says Ross Clarke-Jones. 

Ross, whose nickname Mad Dog references Hopper’s lead role in the Australian new wave classic Mad Dog Morgan, enjoyed a day date with Hopper following the actor’s work on Clarke-Jones’ bio-movie The Sixth Element from 2006. 

It was Kelly Slater, says Ross, who organised the superstar actor, director and photographer to do the movie’s voiceover with Red Hot Chilli Peppers bassist Flea ready to step in if Hopper said no. 

“I wanted a Hollywood star to narrate and I said, how are we going to do that, and, I thought, Kelly knows a few people,” says Ross. 

The movie’s original voiceover was made by Australian actor Peter Phelps, a thespian of some note in the island nation’s well-regarded acting community, although his work was quickly erased when word came that Hopper was in. 

“Me and Peter were in the casino together and Kelly rang me and he said, ‘Would you like Flea from the Chilli Peppers or Dennis Hopper?’

 Ross looked at Phelps and said, “I know you’ve done a good job but Hopper or Flea?”

On the phone, Ross asked if he might consider the matter before making a decision. 

“Mate,” Kelly said, “I’ve got Dennis Hopper and Flea on the line.” 

“Dennis Hopper!” said Ross. 

Hopper didn’t charge a dime for his work and took Ross on a day-date even allowing the notoriously wild driver to take the reins of his vintage Jaguar. 

“I was doing 150 miles an hour on the 405, Hopper’s doing great, talking about his sixth wife, so calm, he felt like my father. I felt like I’d known him all my life.” 

Ross presented Hopper with an old Jaws tow board as a gift, which Hopper then mounted on the wall of his house, removing a Warhol painting to make room for the Maurice Cole hand-shape.

“It was amazing having someone talking about you like that,” says Ross.

That story, and a myriad other tales, tall and true, below.


In utter and complete shock, ABC Television Corporation cancels season two of the World Surf League and Kelly Slater’s Ultimate Surfer: “It has wiped out!”

Tears flow from Santa Monica to Sydney.

In news not one person saw coming, the American Broadcasting Corporation, not to be confused with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, has officially cancelled season two of The Ultimate Surfer, a show headlined by Kelly Slater and shot, on location, at his inland wave pool, won by Zeke Lau, who just happened to make it onto the 2022 World Surf League Championship Tour on his own with the much ballyhooed “Ultimate Surfer Wildcard” going unused except by Tia Blanco.

Now there’s a sentence.

Per industry pub Deadline:

The show premiered in August 2021 and ran for eight eps but it struggled to find a big wave of fans with its opening episode being boarded by less than 1.5M viewers and a 0.3 in the demo.

The series featured top up-and-coming surfers training and battling it out at the surf ranch with men and women competing in individual and team challenges focused on specific surfing disciplines.

Male and female surfers were vying for the title of the Ultimate Surfer and the opportunity to compete on the WSL World Tour.

The competition series, which is produced by Lionsgate’s Pilgrim Media Group and WSL Studios, was shot at Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch in Kings County, California.

Surf champion Slater was the lead consultant and also served as a special correspondent. Former NFL quarterback Jesse Palmer hosted alongside sports anchor Erin Coscarelli and the voice of surfing Joe Turpel as commentators.

It was exec produced by Craig Piligian, WSL CEO Erik Logan, UFC President Dana White and Faye Stapleton.

Shocking and tears flowing, today, from Santa Monica to Sydney.

Less as the story develops.