Surfers near and far woke to the shock news that Mikala Jones, 44, of the very famous Jones family, had died hours ago after suffering a gruesome injury while on a surf trip to the Mentawi Islands. Stab reported that he severed his femoral artery leading to massive blood loss.
Alongside brothers Daniel and Keoni and sister Malia, Mikala made an indelible mark on surf history with an effortless style and unconstrained lifestyle, chasing perfect surf over titles and points. His video releases, pristine and glorious featuring some of the best barrels in the world, an absolute staple over the past two decades.
The son of a doctor, Mikala is intelligent and sophisticated. He’s street smart and savvy but never one to front. Magnanimous, yet, Mikala is also uber-mysto about the secret spots he guards. He is a private family man with residences in Haleiwa and Bali. However, because of Mikala’s personality, professionalism and smooth hand-jiving style he’s a jet-setter who handpicks each year’s photo excursions.
Everyone knows that Mikala has the skills to pay the bills. But his greatest asset is his steel worker mentality. Surfing is his passion as well as his pension. So he hustles and grinds. Call it luck or hard work but he and has an uncanny knack for landing the air, making the tube, getting the shot and being on the cover.
In multi-tiered tirade on Instagram, Jonah Hill's ex Sarah Brady describes the star as “just another narcissist. You make me sick”.
Hell hath no fury, I suppose, and Jonah Hill, the Academy Award nominated actor-cum-director who became a daddy for the first time a few weeks back, has learned y’don’t text anything you don’t want thrown in your face a few weeks, months or years down the line.
Only one year ago, Sarah Brady, an environmental activist and anthropologist with a bachelor degree in Cognitive Science & Sustainability from the University of California, Santa Cruz (2015-2019), posted a photo of her and Hill at Waikiki, the pair sitting side by side on their respective logs, hands tenderly imprisoned, a secret fire burning only for each other, Hill’s hair flying like a golden banner, Diamond Head perfectly framed behind the lovers.
“Two more months and we get to call this gorgeous place home,” wrote Brady, letting the cat outta the bag that she and Hill would move from his nine-million dollar “windowless monolith” with its 3600 square feet of lebensraum in Malibu Colony, a guarded, gated beachfront setup footsteps from the point made famous by anti-hero Miki Dora, to the magical island of Oahu.
Sadly, it would be Brady’s last post of the pair together.
Perhaps related, or not, Brady has now lit a very public fire, dumping a series of what she says are private texts between the pair on Instagram.
God, it ain’t pretty.
Neither of the parties come out of it looking good. Brady stars as the vengeful spurned ex while Hill is apparently sad ’cause his gal running cute photos that sorta show her ass and maybe a little titty and sometime she talking to boys in the surf.
While it is still difficult to imagine, we must all come to grips with the fact that we are, officially, living in a post-ELo world. The former chief executive of the World Surf League, ruthlessly fired one week ago, has left behind broken hearts and raving minds but we are forced to move on. Mandated to dry our eyes and cast our gaze upon the new acting CEOs, the Chief Purpose and People Officer Emily Hofer and Chief Legal Bob Kane with particular attention given to Purpose and People.
Hofer, who grew up in San Jose and Miami, was brought on by the aforementioned Erik Logan told Authority Magazine, “Three years ago, he asked me to lead our work in Purpose at WSL, and at the time, I told him I wasn’t sure I was the right person to lead the work. Afterall, I had no professional experience in ESG work, and in particular, I was not formally trained in Ocean Conservation or Environmental Sciences. He assured me I was the right person for the job and said ‘trust me, you’ll do great.’ After a few months, I realized that not only could I lead the work, but I could make a real difference.”
That “difference,” of course, has been in saving the environment though the building and operating of power/water hungry artificial wave tanks that keep impoverished folks locked out, unable to even peer over a large wooden fence.
As you know, surfing is a greying pastime, particularly in the United States and Australia. Wildly high coastal property values means young middle-class families can no longer afford to live at the beach. In Lemoore, California, though, home to Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch, a fine home can be bought for $300,000. An apartment rented for $600 a month. There, children all the colors of the rainbow ride bikes in the street, eat rocket pops served from ice-cream trucks and watch luxury SUVs, windows darkened, whiz by on their way to the ultra-excuse manmade wave.
In the warmer months, Surf Ranch can be rented for $70,000 a day.
In cooler months, $50,000.
Zero of those slots are given to the lower-middle class locals. Hard-working migrant farmers, low-income teachers, blackjack dealers.
Hofer declares, “We know that each community has its own unique needs and challenges. At WSL, we partner with grassroots organizations and indigenous, communities to educate us about the unique solutions each community needs to protect and conserve their ecosystems. We believe it’s critical to bring humility and authentic listening to these conversations, and where we can, WSL provides different kinds of support to lift up these solutions.”
That does not include allowing the unwashed to surf.
And while hypocrisy has become sport inside the World Surf League’s gilded walls, the fact that already-burdened salt-of-the-earth folks are used as catchwords to excite millionaires and billionaires is… extreme.
David Lee Scales and I discussed this a few weeks ago on our podcast, in any case. A listener of program called in and said he was one of the lucky few to experience the tub. After his session, he talked with young man working at the facility, asking him if he surfed. The fellow said that he did and learned at Surf Ranch. How many hours of surf did he get per month? Two waves.
Two waves, per month, to the local toiling under the sun so that Diplo can post Instagram videos.
People and Purpose.
Sterling and Erik.
Surf comic Sterling Spencer joins Erik Logan pile-on following WSL CEO’s mysterious disappearance, “I wonder what it feels for him, an entire surf community hates you and all he wanted was to do good!”
"I heard a lot of people complaining, more than I’ve ever heard, just about that one guy…"
The Pensacola surfer and comic Sterling Spencer has added his considerable voice to the attack on Erik “Elo” Logan following the sudden, and still mysterious, disappearance of the WSL’s high-profile CEO.
“Today, the World Surf League (WSL) announced that CEO Erik Logan has departed the company, effective immediately. As the WSL begins the process of identifying a new CEO, Emily Hofer, WSL’s Chief People and Purpose Officer, and Bob Kane, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Legal Officer, will jointly lead the company and continue to drive the WSL’s mission to showcase the world’s best surfers on the world’s best waves as the global home of competitive surfing.”
Now, Sterling Spencer, who is thirty-seven and the son of Gulf Coast legend Yancy Spencer III, and who hit worldwide fame in 2010 when he posted a dubbed video of a kid trying to get Jeremy Flores’ autograph at J-Bay, with Flores strangling Spencer at the Surfer Poll awards the same year in revenge, has added his voice to the harangue.
After pointing out Logan’s non-surfing bona fides with several brutal archived clips, Spencer delivers his coup de grâce.
“Everyone hated the guy… I heard a lot of people complaining, more than I’ve ever heard, just about that one guy, everyone hated him, poor guy. I wonder what it feels like for him, literally, an entire surf community hates you and all he wanted to do was good.”
There is a slight upside, as Spencer points out.
“I think he’s rich so he can be depressed in a nice house.”
The case against “ultimate apple-polisher” Dave Prodan for vacated World Surf League CEO job
Dave has sat idly by while the WSL turned into the "bullshit wannabe tennis tour" that Bobby foresaw.
Recently, Surfer and Stab recommended that Dave Prodan, current Chief Marketing Officer, be groomed as successor to the ELo throne. While his pedigree and involvement may be what Dirk and others view as logical and prudent, he is absolutely the wrong man for the job.
To begin, Dave has sat idly by while the WSL turned into the “bullshit wannabe tennis tour” that Bobby foresaw. Along each step of the way, Dave was fully responsible for the hype and positioning of the company in this pivot.
Reason number two is simple, Dave is the manufacturer of the wall of positive noise.
Everything from Tea-hu-po-oh-oh and greenwashing from the WSL starts with the man in charge of marketing. It can be reasonably argued that Prodan is simply doing the bidding of owners, but the failure to make any ding in the wall of positivity is a brand decision, plain and simple.
Dave oversaw the gutting of the core, brand alignments, announcer washing, and likely had some influence over decisions such as failing to allow “Hamilton” to adorn the backs of male competitors on women’s day. It is well established that Dave feels the WSL and the associated content are fair game for a soap box to preach his politics and virtue signal, and elevation to CEO would merely silence more surfers and perpetuate the moronic wave of perpetual positivity.
Dave is also a turncoat.
He is very impassioned when he discusses his days at the Rip Curl surf center in my beloved San Clemente and seeks to delineate himself as a core surfer, denouncing the privilege of his monolithic and frankly unimpressive career. From a mere marketing and branding position Dave has failed to elevate the bleeding brand and has taken something everyone once’s loved and has turned it into something so forgettable my league mates and I have failed to set Fantasy teams for two consecutive contests.
He loves to position himself as a passionate surfer who cares about the sport, but in reality, it appears from the outside that Dave is a mere corporate shill who will do or say anything to continue a globe-trotting life of privilege, happy to rub elbows with competitors and talk surf on a podcast he has turned into the Dave Prodan show.
We as surfers want change, not a continuation of numbers conflation, not gaslighting us in an attempt to agree with what they’re doing, not perpetual saccharine and nauseatingly sweet conversations, not an over bloated tour of the world’s best surfers in the world’s worst waves.
We want to see amazing surf, amazing surfers, in contests that can be watched in a day, with a message we resonate with.