In draconian flex not seen since Scottish hero William Wallace disemboweled by English king circa 1305, sitting longboard champ Joel Tudor confirmed disallowed to defend crown!

Will you fight?

There is rough and then there is rough and then there is the treatment of sitting longboard champion Joel Tudor by the World Surf League. Oh the pain, the indignity, the sheer ouch ouch of being crowned professional surfing’s oldest number one then not being able to defend title by becoming, once again, professional surfing’s oldest number one.

For as the influential Log Rap has just announced:

Well it’s confirmed, @joeljitsu is suspended from WSL competition until the end of 2022, meaning he won’t be at Malibu this year to defend his world title. Full interview with new Senior Tour Manager @kirraseale on the future of the WSL Longboard Tour.

The Britannica Encyclopedia adds:

On August 23, 1305, Wallace was conveyed to Westminster Hall, where he was indicted and condemned to death. There was no trial because he was declared a traitor to the king; Wallace emphatically denied this charge, as he had never sworn allegiance to Edward. That same day he was hanged, disemboweled, and finally beheaded and quartered at Smithfield. His head was set on London Bridge and his limbs exposed at Newcastle, Berwick, Stirling, and Perth.

The last flex of such draconian nastiness.

Tudor, you will remember, was “indefinitely suspended” after challenging the World Surf League over its performative equality.

Will you fight?

Every man dies but not every man truly lives etc.

World Surf League executives openly weep at lost opportunity as one-time enthusiast Mark Zuckerberg completes pivot to combat sport, feted front row at UFC Fight Night 211!

Oh what might have been.

Oh what might have been. As folk everywhere have come to know, the World Surf League is on an unprecedented tear in sport. Numbers through the roof. To the moon. Professional surfing, at its highest level, more popular than the National Basketball Association, European soccer, American football too.

An unprecedented run though, notably missing, any celebrity endorsement. Certainly beloved actor Jonah Hill, race car rebel Lewis Hamilton and other heavy names have fallen in love with our favorite pastime, at a participation level, but not one name bigger than Chris Cote there taking in the action, live and in person, on Lower Trestles’ cobbled stone for the historic spike.

Cote certainly wonderful and important, historically, but no Mark Zuckerberg.

Facebook’s founder and CEO, rich, universally known, dabbled in our obsession in recent years becoming a big wave surfer, palling around with BFF Kai Lenny but then blush off rose as he declared his number one passion is choking and rolling and mixing his martial arts.

America’s 11th richest person, though, just transitioned his love of violence into actual fandom. Early reports suggested that he so enjoys sweaty men bloodying each other that he rented out the entire Ultimate Fighting Championships 211 “fight night” thereby barring media from covering.

CEO Dana White denied the charge, calling it lies, but media was not allowed to attend and Zuckerberg was there, hollering, front row, posing with the aforementioned White, otherwise feted.

But what do you imagine Zuckerberg’s skincare regiment is? How does he maintain such shine? Youthful Cesar cut?

More importantly, how sad is World Surf League CEO Erik Logan that he is not called “The Boss” and also has no famous affirmation?

Openly weeping, I’d imagine.

Jack Dorsey, are you there? It’s me, ELo.


Medina (right) with other catches Neymar Jr. (center) and volleyball gold medalist Bruno Rezende. @gabrielmedina
Medina (right) with other catches Neymar Jr. (center) and volleyball gold medalist Bruno Rezende. @gabrielmedina

As Brazilians head to polls for “historic” election some fear might tip country into chaos, surf champ Gabriel Medina reminds panicked public that he is single and ready to mingle!

"I am a good catch!"

The eyes of the world, today, are focused on the South American country of Brazil where citizens are currently heading to the voting booths for a “historic” election pitting sitting president Jair Bolsonaro against one-time president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. According to most polls Lula, who sits on the left-ish of the political spectrum, has a comfortable lead though Bolsonaro, hard-esque right, is claiming that if he loses the final tabulations it will be because of fraud.

Brazil, as students of history know, was a military dictatorship from the mid 1960s to the mid 1980s and pundits fear that if Bolsonaro falls short, he may either push on the levers of power to remain in office or stoke violent protests on the streets, shoving the country into chaos.

Much worry and hand wringing except not for three time surfing champion Gabriel Medina. The national hero, who once participated in a wonderful three-way with the aforementioned Bolsonaro and very close friend Neymar Jr., took to Instagram not hours ago with this scintillating message.

The rough English translation being, “Taking advantage of the fact that everyone is talking about politics, I would like to say that I am a good catch.”

But who could forget that Medina’s marriage to model Yasmin Brunet ended abruptly this past January. The family, which had been strained, blew nuclear in the aftermath as salacious details, accusations, counter-accusations poured into the regional press.

Well, things calmed down, as things do, and, I think, Medina’s sentiment is as accurate as any. He is still young, handsome, wealthy and talented. Any gal bringing him home to meet the parents, as it were, would be met with instant approval.

The very picture of success.

Left or right, junta or democracy, everything comes up Medina.

Fears mount over potential for Olympian deaths at Paris 2024’s extreme surf venue Teahupoo, “The danger zone is everywhere, everywhere!”

“You are unprepared. You are endangering people around you… if you continue to do what you’re doing, you’re gonna die.

A couple of days back on their podcast The Grit the noted surf broadcaster David Lee Scales and his loudmouth hoodlum sidekick Charlie Smith spoke eloquently of the folly of Paris 2024 Olympic qualifiers being held at lightweight venues Huntington Beach and El Salvador. 

Wrote Chas, “The sheer absurdity of using those waves as a gauntlet for the ‘Left of Doom’ is, according to David Lee Scales, ‘an act of wilful negligence bordering on sociopathy.”

Now, following the episode, fear is growing that surfers from minnow countries for whom honour is everything will, when faced with ten-foot Teahupoo, choose the death-or-glory option over prudence and an early exit from the event. 

The last athlete to be killed during the Olympics was Portugal’s first marathon entrant, Francisco Lazaro, who died of heat exhaustion at the thirty-click mark during the 1912 Games.

A couple of stiffs during training, bike and luge, in the nineteen sixties and eleven Israeli athletes murdered by Palestinian terrorist at the 1972 Munich Games, but, for our purposes, we ain’t counting ‘em. 

The 2024 Games, which runs July 27-29, 2024, will feature 48 surfers, 24 male and 24 female athletes, eight more compared to Tokyo 2020.

As a sort of measure of the wave’s heaviness, at this year’s Teahupoo event the reigning world surfing champion, Filipe Toledo, reprised his “brave act of cowardice” from 2015 (Toledo didn’t take off on a wave in a heat against countryman Italo Ferreira) when he appeared to choke in perfect eight-foot waves, holding priority for fifteen-odd minutes while Slater and Hedge exchanged beneath him.

In contrast, the big-wave surfer Maya Gabeira almost died at Teahupoo in 2011, on a day deemed too big by the greatest surfer of all time, Kelly Slater. 

In a DM to Gabeira, Slater wrote, 

“You are unprepared. You are endangering people around you when they have to go in and rescue in such scenarios. I think if you continue to do what you’re doing, you’re gonna die. So I highly suggest you stop.”

Advice that might be equally given to less storied competitors if a swell does arrive on those fixed dates in July.

Whatever happens, very good for television.

Birthplace of surfing pivots away from ocean-generated waves, boldly gambles on Jamie O’Brien-esque Waimea river mouth billows instead!

More questions than answers.

Wave pools are no longer chimeras of science-fiction in our surfing world, no. They are as real as Mad Max Fury Road. As Dirk Ziff’s $5.7 billion and all fine and all good. Wave pools are very fun to surf, though I haven’t experienced all the technologies yet, of which there are many, including, Kelly Slater’s plow, the rusty plunger, Wavegarden’s other plow, Surf Loch’s whoosh. Waco’s other whoosh, etc.

On an interesting related note, birthplace of surfing Oahu is set to get its first wave pool though has opted for none of the above. The Wai Kai Wave park, to be built near Ewa Beach, has opted for a Jamie O’Brien-esque shovel n sand model. Shall we learn more? According to Forbes:

This exciting development is the first of its kind in Hawai’i, where modern surfing caught a wave in the cultural zeitgeist, and it will have the world’s largest deep-water standing surf wave. Powered by citywave®, this technology creates realistic surfing conditions with infinite and adjustable waves, ranging from two to six feet to accommodate a range of skill levels. The 100-foot-wide controlled wave will allow up to three surfers at a time, and an additional 30 in the “barefoot zone,” and is designed to emulate natural standing river waves like the North Shore’s famous Waimea River Sand Bar.

The Wai Kai Wave was created in collaboration with local surfer Shane Beschen, an X Games gold medalist and former world number two surfer. He and other former and current professional surfers will be available for hands-on instruction and training sessions.


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