Twelve Tribes members (pictured) celebrating.
Twelve Tribes members (pictured) celebrating.

1115th best surfer in the world infiltrates dangerous alleged white supremacist cult that specializes in organic sandwiches and unconventional view that “slavery was a marvelous opportunity for black people!”

Brave work.

Professional surfers, by and large, are not considered to be overly “engaged” in exposing troublesome, potentially exploitative societal subcultures. The Spicoli stereotype of only needing a few tasty waves, a fine buzz and a 12.34 heat total is generally truer than not which makes Danny Berk’s current mission that much more notable.

The current World Surf League number 1115, whose best result on tour was 25th at the Shoe City Pro and only falling to Kolohe Andino, has been spending less time perfecting his Huntington Hop and, instead, heading into a San Diego compound that is home to a “Twelve Tribes” community in an attempt to shed light on some allegedly nasty business.

The group is described by Southern Poverty Law Center thusly: “…a Christian fundamentalist cult born in the American South in the 1970s, is little-known to much of the country, and on first impression its communes and hippie-vibed restaurants and cafes can seem quaint and bucolic. But beneath the surface lies a tangle of doctrine that teaches its followers that slavery was ‘a marvelous opportunity’ for black people, who are deemed by the Bible to be servants of whites, and that homosexuals deserve no less than death.”

One of those “hippie-vibed” restaurants just so happens to be in Vista, California a handful of miles from Oceanside, where Berk and his partner Reckless Ben begin their dangerous mission. The two explain what the Twelve Tribes believe and how they plan on infiltrating and uncovering and then off they go for organic sandwiches then a trip to “the middle of nowhere.”

Berk and Ben fear if they are found out they might be killed, warning viewers neither are suicidal and so if their bodies happen to turn up deceased then, well, look no further than the deli.

Modern day Upton Sinclairs.

Surf King Laird Hamilton makes wildly unanticipated contribution to smash Afro-futurist hit Black Panther sequel Wakanda Forever!

Thank you, ancient Hawaiians.

The highly-anticipated follow-up to Black Panther, titled Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, stormed into theaters a little over a week ago thus far amassing 67 million dollars and is looking to rake in a further 40 million over the extended Thanksgiving weekend.

Critics are declaring, “Wow! You’ll say that over and over again as this mind-blowing, superhero epic unfolds. Wow!”

And, “The most unlikely Marvel film ever… they take these really small bites of grieving, and they can extend them and live in them, and still be able to tell an engaging action-oriented story.”

The story follows, I think, the fictional Afro-futurist kingdom of Wakanda as it deals with the death of its king and an adventure to the underwater world of Talokan, which is based upon the lost city of Atlantis.

But how does one prepare for life beneath the sea?

With special training from surf king Laird Hamilton of course.

According to Pop Sugar:

(The film’s star Lupita) Nyong’o recently gave fans a taste of what that was like. In an Instagram video posted Nov. 18, the 39-year-old actress showed snippets of her underwater workouts and captioned the post, “Swimming down to Talokan was not as easy as it looked!” No kidding. Nyong’o wasn’t just logging laps or practicing her flip turn. Her training consisted of swimming drills, crawling and walking along the bottom of the pool, and walking up underwater steps — all while holding one or two dumbbells in her hands. And of course, Nyong’o did it all while holding her breath, with no oxygen tank in sight. “I felt like a crawfish,” she says at one point during the video.


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A post shared by Lupita Nyong’o (@lupitanyongo)

It’s not a regimen you’d attempt without some expert guidance and coaching, and Nyong’o assures us that she was “safely supervised” by Mark Roberts, a human performance specialist and trainer with XPT Fitness, a “performance lifestyle system” by former pro athletes Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece. In a 2014 article he wrote for Men’s Journal, former pro surfer Hamilton extolled the benefits of working with weights in the water, an approach he attributes to ancient Hawaiians.

As beautiful as it is helpful but… I have just one small question.

If the ancient Hawaiians developed underwater weight workouts is XPT Fitness straight cultural appropriation?

Oh don’t answer. I take it back.

Wakanda Forever.

A pool for swimming and swinging!

Surfing superstar dumped from tour after 14 years and 108 consecutive events opens door to epic cliff top “beach shack” with private gym and wild swimming pool cantilevered over ocean!

Hollywood comes to the provinces!

The surfing superstar Sally Fitzgibbons, who was sensationally dumped from the tour after fourteen years and one hundred and eight consecutive events only to be shovelled a wildcard for the following year’s events following an enormous outcry, has opened the door to her just-renovated “beach shack” overlooking the drink on the NSW South Coast.

Thirty-two-year-old Fitzgibbons is a former world number one whose electric smile, dark and enormous eyes, rippled stomach and with skin painted a deep nutty brown suffused with pink, make her a favourite with sports fans of all pronouns.

Her latest property project, Highline House, built on the headland at Gerroa Beach, where Sally grew up, is a reimagining of the old weatherboard beach shack that used to squat on the dirt.

(Sally bought a place in Minnamurra, near Kiama, in 2009 for $515,000 and sold six years later for over a mill.)

The reno took a year and kept elements of the old joint while building a place she could live in or rent for top dollar, as they say, particularly during the frenetic months of summer when Australians will claw each others’ eyes out to get a piece of beachfront.

“This project became my anchor and why I love the Gerroa headland so dearly,” said Fitz. “Highline House has a unique feel, with quirks that sometimes make it hard to give it one particular style. It is a beach house when categorised, but it’s also open to interpretation, from the visuals of the salt-crusted rock platforms becoming the inspiration for the kitchen bench tops, to the warmth of the Baltic pine flooring and the history of the restored pieces from the original house, including the front door, oars and lifesaving ring.”

It isn’t the most original fit-out, Hamptons, Palm Springs blah blah, but the build looks solid, it’s got a swinging pool hanging out over the ocean, a private gym, and you can run down the grassy knoll to the beach.

Ain’t the greatest wave in the world, but it ain’t so bad either, middling crowd outside of summer weekends etc.

“I grew up in Gerroa so I like my own space. I like catching a lot of waves in the session,” says Fitz.


Thirst trap photos of young Kelly Slater trend on TikTok as platform’s junior users discover “world’s most delicious surfer EVER” for very first time!

"What movie or show is he on?"

We surf fans, we students of water dancing at the very highest level, have been aware of Kelly Slater for the better part of four decades. The boy from Cocoa Beach, who first burst onto the scene as an über talent in the middle 1980s and made his professional debut in 1990, seemingly had it all. Symmetrical features, green eyes that pierced, chestnut hued skin, hair begging for fingers to be run through plus much ability on the surfboard.

He, of course, used those Hollywood looks to woo the likes of Pamela Anderson, Bar Refaeli, Gisele Bündchen while also winning an unprecedented eleven championship trophies.

Over the years, the hair has been disappeared, visage lightly weathered. Oh he is still really, really really ridiculously good looking, for even a 35-year-old much less 50, but his younger package was all the way exceptional. Better than Leo DiCaprio, I’d say.

Well, as it happens, a whole new generation has discovered baby Kelly and has fallen head first into his thirst trap.

The greatest surfer of all time is currently trending on Tik Tok as teenaged girls are posting various photos to the platform and weeping at the beauty.

Overcome in some sort of hysteria.

Charlotte’s Web, which counts some 250k followers, features a montage, for example, with the caption “Young Kelly Slater is my DREAM man!” and comments ranging from “Somebody finally said it” to “hold up a picture of what movie or show he is on cause I need to find it.”

@charlotte.s_web Young Kelly Slater is my DREAM mans #fyp #surf #foryou ♬ Inside their head – anastasia

Web replied “He’s a surfer” but could have also said “Baywatch.”

In any case, do you think the weight of pin-up good looks is a heavy burden to bear or do you think it’s similar to carrying the load of cut-rate surf journalism?

Heart emoji.

Chasing Mavericks (pictured) being yuck.
Chasing Mavericks (pictured) being yuck.

Santa Cruz readies itself for burning hot Hollywood spotlight as filming set to get underway for unnamed picture on life of Daryl “Flea” Virostko from Academy Award winning director!

Stars set to be born!

Santa Cruz, California, some hour-plus from San Francisco, has a surfing heritage that is second to none. The Sport of Kings was introduced to the redwood’d land in 1885 as Hawaiians David Kawananakoa, Edward Keli’iahonui and Jonah Kuhio Kalaniana’ole came to glide the chill. Surfing took deep root in the 1950s, Jack O’Neill inventing the wetsuit etc. and soon the town and its wave riding were one and the same.

Oh there have been some ups and downs. Methamphetamine, in particular, took deep root just like surfing and infected the scene for along time, famous names like Shawn “Barney” Barron, Vince Collier, Daryl “Flea” Virostko steering their ships dangerously close to the shoal while heeding her siren song.

Flea’s story, thankfully, did not end in tragedy. He cleaned up, launched recovery program FleaHab and now a film is being made involving elements from his life but not just any film. A film by the Academy Award winning team of Joshua James Richards and Chloé Zhao.

Per Look Out West:

Shhhhh. No one is supposed to talk about a movie-in-the-making.

But could this finally be the definitive surf-culture film Santa Cruz deserves?

“You don’t want to jinx it,” said Darryl Virostko.

Better known as “Flea” in the Santa Cruz surfing world, Virostko is the main person involved in what many are hoping is the cinematic representation surfing — and Santa Cruz surf culture — have long yearned for.

Filming of the yet-unnamed movie is set to begin in the spring, though the script is still being finalized. But the involvement of Joshua James Richards and Chloé Zhao — most famous for the cinematography and direction of 2021 Best Picture-winner “Nomadland” — have locals in the cinematic know excited despite a lack of firm details.

While (Flea) believes his real-life persona will play a central part in the movie, and is working with a young surfer who figures to play a primary acting role, Virostko remains circumspect about the plot lines as the script shifts through other hands.

“It touches a lot about life’s struggles,” he said. “But these guys are legit. The filmmakers have a really good feel for what they want to do.”


But did you see Nomadland? It was a fine, if depressing, depiction of workers struggling in America. Richards and Zhao have a unique filmmaking flair in that they cast both actors and everyday folk to star.

Almost vérité.

The possibility for an Academy Award winning film about surfing, in any case, is something to get giddy about. Giddy enough, even, to chase the hideous taste of Chasing Mavericks from the palate.

Back to Flea, though. Many years ago, I interviewed famed-methamphetamine dealer/surfer Anthony Ruffo in the Virostko home. It was my first profile for Stab and I described the surroundings as a “dingy meth den” or some such.

Flea, if I recall, was not please.

I imagine that scene will be left on the cutting room floor.