Rage, rage against the dying light.
It is undeniable that we live in a day and age of heightened surf rage. From La Jolla to Malibu across the grand Pacific to Snapper Rocks, and back again to San Francisco, “out of control violence” is our currency. Why? Difficult to say but I think easy to blame Covid, Costco and… I don’t know, something else that starts with a “C.”
In any case, David Lee and I received a call from an irate TikToker today during our weekly chat. He was furious that the anonymous account he made to denigrate surf rager Andy Lyon, dubbed “the angriest man in surfing,” did not get the mob action he was hoping for, that David Lee and I didn’t interview the “boy” victim who turned out to be a twenty-year-old man, or bystanders.
That Lyon basically skated.
“And you call yourself surf journalists…” he seethed into the phone.
David Lee immediately distanced himself from the “surf journalist” moniker but not me. Sure, my form of reportage isn’t “rigorous” or “good” sometimes not “accurate” but it does get to hearts of matters every so often which brings us back to surf rage.
No act of of it is ever “right” but who amongst us, here, hasn’t sinned?
I’ll throw myself straight under the bus first. A few years ago I was surfing out the front. Being that it was out the front, in Cardiff by the Sea, I’m certain that it wasn’t epic but epic is neither here nor there. So here and there I was out with a small knot including a very elderly woman on a longboard. A wave came, I caught it, she dropped right in front of me and failed to exit the wave even after I whistled. Another wave came, she dropped right in front of me and failed to exit when I hooted. Another wave came, she dropped right in front of me and failed to exit when I screamed and so I paddled up to her and hollered, “HEY! What’s your deal? You have done me wrong three times in a row!” She, confused, responded, “I was paddling first.”
Oh how my blood boiled.
“You were paddling first? Yeah? That does not matter at all! I was in position and you are an absolute idiot and dumb!” I exploded right in her face, peppering with many swears.
Now, of course I was surfing in a spot enjoyed by old ladies and getting burned by one, all embarrassing for me and my surf rage only made the scene more embarrassing but surf rage I did because that’s what we do.
Not acceptable, a blot on my ledger, I cursed out an old lady but, again, who amongst us is spotless?
Do the new crop of Covid, Costco, climate change surfers live for party waves? Do they hate the greatest surfer ever Kelly Slater for dreaming of days when fins were punched out?
Listen to the full conversation, now or later, and share your favorite indiscretion below.