World Surf League flips calendar back to early industrial revolution days, sends children into hepatitis soup for World Junior Championships!

An abundance of caution to the wind!

But here we are on the very precipice of organized professional surfing’s return at its very top level. The window for our World Surf Leauge’s 2023 championship tour kick-off is but days away and, in the meantime, we can feast upon the Sambazon World Junior Surfing Championship currently in the water at Rob Machado’s Seaside Reef.

(Watch here)

Now, those paying attention to various newses over the past few weeks have certainly read, maybe even experienced, the wild amount of rain that California has received. A deluge. An atmospheric bomb. Flushed sewers and proper surf leaving the state’s wave sliders on the horns of a somewhat dilemma.

Is barrel worth the risk of hepatitis?

As you know, Surfline, the official forecasting partner of the World Surf League, recommends NOT entering the water for at least 72 hours after a significant rain event due the aforementioned sewers not to mention various other toxic run-offs and, as I learned from Jen See yesterday, poison oak.


Well, in a shock to health experts, those World Juniors were ordered to paddle into the brown soup less than twelve hours after the sky opened and motor oil flowed from the hills into the lineup. I’ll admit as to being surprised when driving by Seaside yesterday and seeing singlets in the water. A bold move not seen since children were ordered into dangerous factories during those heady early industrial revolution days.

Did you think, though, that the World Surf League was capable of such… audacity? For the last few years an “abundance of caution” has been the guiding principle. Making young ones paddle into potentially lifelong debilitating disease seems… exciting.

An abundance of cation to the wind.

Filipe Toledo put on notice.

Strider's lurid tits!

World Surf League personality famous for lurid “attack dog tits” reveals the London drug bust that drove his family to California, “He went down hard for almost 10 years! We left the next day on a plane to Los Angeles!”

"We saw it all, death, drugs, violence…"

There are many reasons to fall in love with the WSL commentator Strider Wasilewski, still boyish at fifty and whom we can imagine falling gratefully asleep every night, tucked spoon-fashion into beloved wife, one hand babyishly grasping a breast as a child clutches a favourite toy for comfort when he enters the frightening realm of a dream. 

Shall we list the ways?

His now famous attack dog tits, a surf career that included a sponsorship by Quiksilver and a place in the Pipe hierarchy , as well as his rise from the skate ghetto of Dogtown, and now, in his harvest years, a man with the elasticity and balance of an adolescent.

And, today, the wild revelation that the only reason he ended up living in Santa Monica, then a hotbed of high-performance surf and skate stars, Jay Adams, Tony Alva etc, was a drug bust in London when he was only six. 

“In 1978 there was a knock on the door of our flat in the suburbs of London,” Strider told his 100k-plus followers on Instagram. “My pops had just left to go get Chinese food as we had company over… The knock was loud and inappropriate, it was “The Bobby’s!” (English Police). As the guests tried to stash the the illegal substances they kicked in the door and raided the house. I vaguely remember standing close by the front door when my dad got close enough to the house to realize what was going on! I was held by the shirt as he was detained out front on the street… He went down hard for almost 10 years! We left the next day on a plane to Los Angeles, stayed at our Uncle Jim’s and with our God Parents Edward & Sharon until we landed in this building picture above, The Sea Castle Apts.. Rent Controlled and on the beach, $300 a month for a 2 bedroom apt.! All we had was the beach, we saw it all, death, drugs, violence and WAVES. My brother @mescalito70 and I would wait on the shoreline for people to lose their boards and we would grab them. Ride them in the whitewash until they realized we had em. That’s how I started surfing.” 

Strider is a rare commodity in the surf game, candour his great quality. Speaking to The Surfers Journal a while back, he described his wild life in Santa Monica and Venice. 

“I saw a guy get shot in front of my house. And they used to deal drugs in the alley behind us. There were drug addicts that lived on the beach and under the pier. It was the Dogtown era. I moved there in ’78. It was right when Tony Alva and Jay Adams were hitting their peaks—doing what you see in the movies. They were stars. They’d kick me out of the parties because I was too young. They didn’t want me to see what was going on. In that sense, they were looking out for me, which thinking about it now, was really cool of them. I can’t believe most of those guys made it through those days. When I started surfing, I couldn’t go to Venice. My little crew could go down there and skate, but we weren’t even allowed to walk out to the breakwater. The guys would throw rocks at us, beat us up, break our fins, and then tell us to go home. They didn’t care that we were little kids. Slowly, I became friends with a kid named Ricky Massie, who was my childhood rival as a surfer. Through him, I got a hall pass to go to Venice. His family members were Venice gangsters. Even though the rest of us were terrified to go down to the breakwater, Ricky was probably safer down there than he was in his neighborhood. We used to go to parties at his house that were so scary.”


World #1 golfer flies to Hawaii to tap into the “savage vitality” of greatest athlete ever Kelly Slater, “He is a wealth of knowledge on peak performing and executing at the biggest moments!”

“When you’re around a guy like that, you always take something out of the encounter. He's a great example of longevity at the highest level."

For a time there in 2014, the Australian golfer and US Masters champ Adam Scott was the number one ranked player in the world, although he’d soon drift down the rankings and never again win a Major. 

Kelly Slater, whom Scott would meet at a golf tournament at Pebble Beach in 2018 and subsequently invite to his wave pool in Lemoore, has never wavered in his ability to win, even waltzing through opponents less than half his age to win the Pipeline Pro last January, a couple of weeks before his fiftieth birthday. 

(Fans will remember Slater, looking like an old-school bull dagger with his thick neck and shaved head, rimming Backdoor for a pair of nines to beat twenty-four-year-old Seth Moniz.)

Now, Scott, who at forty-two is almost a decade younger than Slater, has revealed he met with Slater in Hawaii while there to compete on the PGA’s opening event, hoping to soak up a little of the 11-time world champions magic.

“He is a wealth of knowledge on peak performing, let’s say, and executing at the biggest moments,” said Scott. “I don’t go up there just to have deep and meaningfuls and try and tap into him on that, but when you’re around a guy like that, you always take something out of the encounter. Even yesterday being up there on the North Shore, just going out for a swim in the ocean with him, it sounds too spiritual but a bit of an enlightening experience and just being able to let go a little bit.

“That’s a feeling I get from Kelly a lot, like, ‘Adam, just let go a little bit’.

“I think at this point in my career, it’s a good thing to remember because I’ve done a lot of work over the years, and I know instinctively how to swing the club and chip and putt and do all those things, and you do have to just let go and do it and not be so controlled I think at this point.”

Scott said it’s Slater’s savage vitality that continues to inspire.

“He’s a great example of longevity at the highest level. You never know whether you’re going to get little pearls of wisdom here or there when you’re hanging around people like Kelly Slater. The physical aspect over 40 I think definitely is a big part of playing top, top level golf because you’re playing against mostly mid to young 20-year-olds, even 30-year-olds. It’s a very different physical state. Then the motivation obviously is the big part of mental, so that’s really having a good balance in your life, to be able to maintain the motivation to not get stuck on the tour in a grind kind of mentality and more of it’s just a really good spot to be.

“They’re all the things I’m trying to do. Physically, I’m in a good space. Kelly has worked hard on all those things.”

What do you think you would learn if you were gifted a morning swim with Kelly Slater?

Do you imagine being able to feel his primal source of energy or do you think the admission that you roam BeachGrit occasionally would kill much of the communication between you and he?

Waimea Bay. Photo: Surfline
Waimea Bay. Photo: Surfline

Watch Now: Surfline shames Eddie organizers, livestreams epic Waimea Bay after iconic contest called off due possibility of nasty wind!

Much crow.

Surf fans have been riding a wild rollercoaster, of late. Oh you certainly soared and plummeted on each and every high to low of the Kelly Slater x Giselle Bündchen possible reunion but even more has been this week’s on then off Eddie Aikau Invitational.

Yes, the most iconic surf contest in the world was greenlit for the first time in eight years Monday only to be called off due to a nasty wind forecast Tuesday.

Tears of joy quickly turning into tears of woe.

But did that nasty wind materialize?

Not really and Surfline, official forecasting partner of the World Surf League and having one helluva month, decided to rub contest organizer noses right in it by airing Waimea Bay live from multiple angles complete with replay and commentary.

Like the contest except without prestige.

The coverage has been so good it makes me wonder if Surfline is actually the answer to the World Surf League. Simply filming epic swells at important waves from multiple angles and allowing viewers at home to crown a day’s winner.

You must watch here.

World’s greatest surfer Kelly Slater delights onlookers, paddles out at lightly-considered novelty wave during California’s “bomb swell!”

Riding the Ben Gravy train.

The world’s greatest surfer is, without question, Kelly Slater. Eleven-times a champion, oldest Pipe professional in history, Momentum Generation icon, dater of Gisele Bündchen. The boy from Cocoa Beach has been squarely in our spotlight for thirty-plus years and never, no not once, fails to delight.

But where was Slater during the just-passed “bomb swell?” California, as you know, was graced with its most robust surf in fifty years and Slater does sometimes reside in San Clemente so did he paddle Lower Trestles? Maybe Blacks?

Sand Spit?

No, no and no.

Delighting onlookers, the best of all-time decided to make barrel at a lightly-considered novelty wave in Seal Beach.

Seal Beach?

Seal Beach.

According to photographer Ed Smith, who happened to be there on the beach, “You just started hearing ‘Kelly Slater is here… there he is!’ He paddled out and surfed in front of me the whole time.”

Legend Peter Townend told the Orange County Register that Slater showing up in Seal Beach, heretofore most famous as home of progressive rock/post-hardcore band RX Bandits, would be like Tom Brady arriving at a local football field to toss the ball around or Lebron James coming to a neighborhood court and shooting some hoops. “Well, for Seal Beach Surf grows, Slater turned up to catch a few Southside shore grinders to stoke out the locals,” he added on his socials.

Slater, ever progressive, must certainly have been paying attention to the rise of Ben Gravy and his novelty wave quest over the years. Do you think the Seal Beach session telegraphs a move to the vlogosphere?

Would you watch?

Speaking of football field, the University of Southern California’s school of social work will no longer use the word “field” because of its connotations to slavery.

Exciting times.

Watch here.