Calls to boycott surfing “Bigot Fest” grow deafening as pile-on continues following alleged “vile exclusionary rhetoric”!

"This rhetoric is rooted in the misogynistic idea that women are weaker, smaller require protection…"

A terrific storm hit Mexico several days ago when a much-loved longboard contest there was throttled by trans-activists after including the rule, “There are only two divisions: natural born women and natural men.”

Pretty silly to be so transparent for we live in an age of confected danger and outrage. Most people know to pull their heads in when it comes to dudes with dickies and the slightly rarer jock pussy.

After a post appeared with the controversial rule, contest organiser Izzy Preciado was slammed, first, by Fringe Surfers New England, which was quickly followed by Surf Equity, whom you’ve read about here, here, here, here and here. 

In the hysteria that followed, sponsors were urged, with varying success, to pull out the Mex Log Fest or else would be seen to be “condoning the perpetuation of bigotry and hate.”

Oatly, a manufacturer of oat-based drinks whose charter reads “Everybody—regardless of spiritual beliefs, birth country, race, gender, sexual orientation, or color of their nail polish—is of equal worth” quickly threw their weight behind the boycott. 

“The bigotry mentioned in the screenshots is absolutely contrary to our values and our team has relayed this accordingly to the event founders,” the company wrote in a DM to Fringe Surfers New England. 

Hydrophile Surf Craft, maker of fins for longboards, singles, experimental craft etc, were similarly aghast.

“I wanted to take a moment to be sure I made it clear how I stand on trans rights, gender equality, and human rights in general. The targeted exclusion of trans athletes from @mexilogfest by @surfinmexico is not okay. There is no room for hate in surfing and I implore you to stand against it as well.” 

Someone calling ‘emselves @sats_ko lit up on a “cis bro supporting a cis bro who is the founder and event direct of “Bigot Fest” with a lengthy screed., 

“Trans women’s inclusion in surfing is a feminist issue and a human rights issue – and this vile exclusionary rhetoric harms ALL women. Obviously this is blatant transphobia – and he is not thinking/caring about the trans experience – but one thing that stands to me is: I imagine he thinks he is speaking in solidarity with cis women (?) – whereas, banning trans women hurts cis women too. 

“Because ppl come in all shapes and sizes – and this rhetoric is rooted in the misogynistic idea that women are weaker, smaller require protection etc. Would he prefer weight classes to make things ‘fairer’ amongst different sized ppl. No because it’s not really about that. 

“But what banning trans women does it put scrutiny on cis women who may be taller, more muscular, more masc/butch/androgynous. I hope this can start a dialogue  to unpick get ppl reflecting how these arguments are rooted in misogyny.” 

Powerful words although experience does tell me that, generally, women are weaker than men, although miles ahead when it comes to mind fucking, again, generally.

More importantly, take Eddie Rodrigues, below, a crossover gal.

Is the line blurring for you now?



Future California workers (pictured) with their hero (insert). Photo: Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Future California workers (pictured) with their hero (insert). Photo: Fast Times at Ridgemont High

California surfers rejoice as adored Governor Gavin Newsom gifts two extra “sick days” per year!

Super "sick."

While, from the outside, it may seem like a California surfer’s life is all milk and honey, good times and chill vibes, it can get rough and tough in the Golden State. From too many converted vans taking up the prime beachfront parking spaces to the sun shining in eyes when it sets, globs of tar that, occasionally get stuck to the bottom of feet to former World Surf League CEO Erik Logan prowling around… Not easy.

Thankfully, the almost universally adored governor, Gavin Newsom, just signed a new law raising the mandatory sick days workers get from three to five.

“Too many folks are still having to choose between skipping a day’s pay and ‘taking care of themselves’ or their family members when they get ‘sick,’” Newsom declared. “We’re making it known that the ‘health and wellbeing’ of workers and their families is of the utmost importance for California’s future.”

“Taking care of themselves,” “sick” and “health and wellbeing” all clearly dogwhistles for surfers.

With these two extra “sick days,” it will be much easier for the state’s hardened wave sliders to maximize the swell that is sure to be whipped up thanks to El Niño.

Newsom and his allies in the legislature, in another wink to surfers, rejected the California Chamber of Commerce-supported alternative bill that would allow for five days, as well, but also require employees to provide “proof of the reason for their absence.”

Buzzkills, man.

“Cooler” heads prevailed, though.

Super “sick.”

Do you remember when Governor Newsom closed beaches during Covid and “fined” surfers?

Another solid wink wink.

The wave sliders’ friend.

John Witzig's hall of fame Noosa shot from 1966 with Bobby McTavish in the foreground. | Photo: John Witzig

Surfers declare war on council accused of destroying iconic wave so perfect riding it is “like having a cup of tea with God!”

"Maddeningly inconsistent but enchanting" wave gets disappeared by bureaucrats!

Surfers in Noosa Heads have drawn battle lines against its local council, demanding it “cease all future sand pumping onto the area known as First Point at Noosa Heads – and to work with interested groups to find a solution to the present situation”.

See, the “maddeningly inconsistent” but “enchanting set of tropical right-breaking Australian point waves located inside Noosa Heads National Park, 150 miles north of Brisbane” has become buried under tons of sand. 

And, in a petition the Save First Point Action Group writes, “Due initially to the effects of offshore sand dumping, followed by sand pumping by the Noosa Council, and two recent sand flow deposits following flooding, we need a pause to future sand-pumping to allow First Point and Little Cove to recover naturally. We are calling on interested parties and the surfing public from across Australia and around the world to help us Save First Point.”

Ol Phil Jarrett, one of the best in the surf journalism game who shifted north to Noosa decades ago, explains it pretty well. 

The science behind the sand, the massive buildup of sand which has all but destroyed First Point’s global reputation as (arguably) one of the world’s great point break surfing waves and (certainly) one of the best longboard waves in the world, has been caused by a complex set of factors, both natural and man-made, and there is no easy fix. What we do know is that, in time, storm swell events will gauge out the record sand level (perhaps as much as 100,000 cubic metres) allowing perfect waves to stand up over a rock and sand bottom and peel down the point as they once did. But the Save First Point Action Group is playing the long game, hoping to convince the council – and the general public – that we need to be proactive to ensure that the natural asset doesn’t disappear again.

The problem with that is that most people don’t surf (despite evidence to the contrary every time we have a swell event) and beachgoers think a Sahara of sand on which to plonk their cabanas is the best thing since sliced bread, while accommodation managers and Hastings Street business folk panic every time the beach erodes and a few rocks are exposed, to the point of privately organising the dumping of several truckloads of sand some years ago just ahead of the Christmas rush.

While its importance to the modern-day shredder has diminished a little, although the last time I flew up there to chase a cyclone swell I was sharing the green-walled waves with Julian Wilson and Wade Goodall, it remains a natural treasure.

“Surfing at Ti Tree Bay,” the shaper Bob McTavish once said, “is like having a cup of tea with God.”

Surfer hair, a how-to!

The fleeting beauty and cruel impermanence of “Surfer Hair”

When you're 15 years old, losing those golden stripes will tip you into the deepest existential gloom…

I grew up, like every other kid, building a castle of unfulfilled moments, lost opportunities and slammed doors. An accumulation of regrets so painful – all those gals never kissed, all those set waves never ridden, all those heats lost cause of, what, nerves? – that if I ever let myself wade back into ’em I’d drive myself into the arms of crazy.

But, there was this one time. And, if I could backspin the planet 20 years or some, I’d play it diff.

I don’t remember her name, but I can’t forget her deep brown skin. She was just short of seventeen years, but lived alone, or so she said. The small house was one street back from the beach, an hour from my parent’s house, where I lived.

The situation was unusual, sure. But, when you’re 15-and-a-half and staring at a gal whose breasts speak of buttery milk and carnal abundance and she tells you there ain’t another soul in that house, in that house with the bedroom that faces east and so the morning sun pours onto the bed, onto her sweating body, you don’t argue the point.

I had met her outside a bar on a Friday night and she’d invited me to her house the following weekend. She was tall and had long limbs, a face too pretty, a gal built for modelling.

I was just coming out a summer of eight-hour beach days. My dark hair was balayaged with blond stripes, my body, although not the sort to thrill gym kinkos, was tight enough and brown, too. I was riding high. A surfer. And, surfers ruled my town.

In my pre-surf life, this gal wouldn’t have exercised her neck to check me out. Now, suddenly, I was going to her house, to the the empty house. I imagined her deep and fathomless submission to me. My expert groping hands leading her queer clumsiness. She would experience a seething electric female ecstasy while I controlled her like a master puppeteer.

I  imagined this many times in the week leading to our appointment. I spent so much time in my room, my mom thought I’d become clinically depressed.

Two days before we were to meet I decided to really light shit up by getting a killer haircut. At the big-city hairdresser, I showed ’em a photo of a CK model and paid fifty bucks for a cut and blow-dry. I watched handfuls of blond waft onto the floor, little golden parachutes whose contrasting beauty had secured me this erotic rendezvous. I watched as they were swept into the trapdoor at the corner of the salon. I might’ve whispered goodbye as the flap slammed shut.

That afternoon, I cried in the bathroom as I stared at the stupid boy with monotone  hair stiffened by gel on the sides and awash with mousse on the top panel. Then, I ran to the drug store and bought a bottle of “Honey Blonde”.

While my parents slept, I painted the peroxide in long stripes. It turned my dark hair red.

It looks okay, I said to myself.

On the day I was going to meet her I scooped up a handfuls of pomade, gel and mousse. I worked it in, I smooth it over. I shaped and sculpted.

It looks okay, I said to myself.

But, it didn’t.

And the gal’s face said it all when my bike came up her driveway and her vision was filled with an ordinary boy and not a surfing super hero.

What happened to your hair, she said, although the question rang rhetorically not quizzically.

If I was a painter, I could’ve made a masterpiece of that moment, a study of profound disappointment.

Then she said, Let’s go to the beach.

On the beach I showed her my right bicep that I had inflated by lifting my school bag 200 times a day in front of the mirror.

I invited her to run her hands over the bulge in my arm.

It feels pretty good, she said.

But she kept looking at my hair.

It’s red, she said at one point.

At her house, I asked if I might take a shower hoping she would follow. After thirty minutes she yelled, Are you alright in there?

I left at exactly three-thirty pm that afternoon.

I know because the radio news was on and there was something about the British surfer Martin Potter winning the world title, and I now hated Martin Potter because his hair was a bed of sun-burnt curls and I knew that if Martin Potter was here on this driveway, near this girl in the scoop leg shorts and the loose singlet that was cut low on the sides, he could take her, he could take her now, right in front of me, and they would bang and they would bang.

And, then they would laugh at my red hair while they smoked cigarettes and the sun coming through the bedroom window baked their skin even darker.

@marco_mignot How to Get Surfer Hair @Surf.Spray💦 ♬ Unholy – Sam Smith & Kim Petras



(Editor’s note: This story first appeared when BeachGrit opened its doors on a fine July morning in Chas Smith’s kitchen. Other first stories included Doll Lady Haunts Trestles Ahead of Hurley Pro, Focus Group Creates Brand: Names It Vissla, Ask Pam: Ohh Ya She Cool(Dane Reynolds and Courtney Jaedtke’s dog was our advice columnist for the first year), How To Make A Surf Film With Kai Neville (conventional!), Surfers Who Weep Like Gals, and an essay and photo gallery entitled Surfers With Beautiful Tits.)

Surf hero. Photo: New Jersey channel 12
Surf hero. Photo: New Jersey channel 12

New Jersey surfer saves baby deer from drowning thereby etching name alongside Eddie Aikau, Ryan Hargrave in the “Annals of Surf Heroics!”

Surf hero gonna surf hero.

Yes, surfers are often curmudgeonly, territorial, grumpy, grouchy, “the worst,” to quote the beloved radio personality Scott Bass, but we can be heroes, at least just for one day. But how many tales of “surfer saves life” have you read even only here on BeachGrit? Hundreds? Thousands? More?

More, I’d venture a guess.

Stories of surfers saving those suffering heart attack, in the water, or those lacerating themselves with fin or those bitten by shark or those who got swept away in a rip current or those who crashed boat… the list is endless but today we have a surfer going above and beyond in order to save a li’l baby deer from drowning.

But let us meet Thomas Buckley, a surf hero from New Jersey, and let us listen to his tale of derring-do.

“I didn’t even planning on going surfing. But as soon as I got up around 6:30 a.m. told myself, ‘Well, you’re going surfing today,’” the handsome younger man shared with New Jersey channel 12.

So there he was going surfing, when he heard a concerned bystander yell “Deer!”

Heroic blood pumping through a heroic heart, Buckley paddled into action.

He understood, instantly, that the adorable piece of sweet meat must have gotten washed off the jetty. He could see that it was struggling, blowing water out of its button nose, and so without a thought for himself, Buckley guided it to the sand where it pranced off to join its mother, probably.

Day saved.

His friends, when the saw the reports of unmitigated heroism, were not surprised, sharing that he is always on the scene and never afraid.

Surf hero gonna surf hero.