WSL (pictured) begging to peek. Photo: creepy movie
WSL (pictured) begging to peek. Photo: creepy movie

WSL begs fans to “support the sport” by letting it touch privates!

"The momentum of professional surfing is real!"

The World Surf League (WSL) is about to launch its 2024 Championship Tour and fans are excited. Or, maybe not excited but resigned. South Africa’s J-Bay has been disappeared, much to chagrin. Cloudbreak has been added, with huzzahs. Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch is gone. Whew. Lower Trestles will crown Filipe Toledo champion again. Argh.

But might there be a little trouble in paradise? While the powers continue to insist that “the momentum of professional surfing is real,” there are growing signs that it might not be. For one, former CEO Erik Logan’s chair is still being occupied by the WSL’s head of legal and its head of Human Resources. For two, the “global home of professional surfing” abandoned its beloved Santa Monica headquarters in favor of El Segundo.

Where it shares space with veterinarians.

And wheezing cats.

On the verge of death.

Devil in WSL details

But has the WSL found a way to “monetize?”

The serious surf fan, all one hundred, still consumes WSL surf contests via the WSL app. It is fine enough, as far as apps go. Antiquated, maybe. Antiquated, probably. Also unnecessary? The WSL’s surf contests, of course, available free on Caffeine.

And YouTube.

But serious surf fan gonna serious surf fan. The WSL decided to tug heartstrings, begging serious surf fans to allow advertisements to track them in order to “support the sport.”

A legitimate ask when the serious surf fan attempts to update.

Touching privates.

But how many serious sporting leagues want to finger through their most ardent supporters’ delicates? Oh, I am certain all of them. But how many beg?

The World Surf League likely stands alone.

Though what do you think El Segundo will do with the information received? Gift it to Joe Turpel to juice his love life? To Selema Masekela? A non-functional mirror image of deceit and fraud?

Do you trust the WSL with your deepest, darkest web browsing?

Asking for a friend.

The future is burger. Photo: Strange Rumblings in Shangri-la
The future is burger. Photo: Strange Rumblings in Shangri-la

“Doomsday Glacier” threatens iconic surf breaks worldwide!

Fare thee well, Pipeline.

We all know that the end of the world is here or at least here adjacent. Israel is busily setting up armageddon on the eponymous plains of Megiddo. Nobody really cares because Travis Kelce is officially dating Taylor Swift. Jada Pinkett-Smith and Will Smith and their “brutiful” relationship make up the other 50% of the news cycle not spoken for by Travis Kelce officially dating Taylor Swift. And the “Doomsday Glacier” is much closer to annihilating iconic surf breaks worldwide than previously thought.

Also probably people.

Officially part of Thwaites Glacier, a vast shelf of Antarctica east of Mount Murphy, the Doomsday bit may be well further along to completing its mission than previously thought. Researchers in Antarctica have been studying how much of the glacier might be saved. According to their models, not very much. Even if we all stop driving gas guzzling cars immediately. Even if World Surf League shutters its energy-starved Surf Ranch tomorrow.

According to the journal Nature Climate Change:

We find that rapid ocean warming, at approximately triple the historical rate, is likely committed over the twenty-first century. With widespread increases in ice-shelf melting, including in regions crucial for ice-sheet stability. When internal climate variability is considered, there is no significant difference between mid-range emissions scenarios and the most ambitious targets of the Paris Agreement. These results suggest that mitigation of greenhouse gases now has limited power to prevent ocean warming that could lead to the collapse of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.

Kaitlin Naughten, an ocean modeller at the British Antarctic Survey said, “Unfortunately, it’s not great news. Our simulations suggest we are now committed to a rapid increase in the rate of ocean warming and ice shelf melting for the rest of the century.”

Goodbye Pipeline

With the glacier already basically melted, it is simply a matter of time before Pipeline, G-Land, J-Bay etc. stop working. As every surfer knows, waves are fussy things that require precise conditions in order to work. Too little water and weird. Too much water and soft.

El Porto, a bellwether, is already broken. By “broken” I mean “doesn’t break.”

We must, therefore, imagine a future where the world’s surf mirrors Southern California. Slow burgers punctuated with the odd set that breaks too far out.

The question, I suppose, is will the World Surf League adjust? I mean, aside from having Ethan Ewing plant a bush in Antarctica. Will the judging criteria change? To reward slow pumping down the line followed by a weak whitewash bash? On a mid length? Hips swiveling lightly while the arms windmill?

Is there a World Title in my future?

More as the story develops.

Justin Trudea and Erin Brooks
Canada's progresive PM Justin Trudea at a fancy dress party and, inset, surfer Erin Brooks.

Canada’s “sadistic” rejection of surfer Erin Brooks’ citizenship “contravenes UN Convention on the Rights of the Child”

“They’re denying her identity and Erin Brooks will pay a price for this”

An interesting email and subsequent phone call this morning from the author of The Lost Canadians: A struggle for citizenship rights, equality and identity re: the “cruel and sadistic” rejection of Erin Brooks’ Canadian citizenship. 

Vancouver-born Chapman, a pilot for United Airlines, was six when he was stripped of his Canadian citizenship due to a weird quirk in the Canadian Citizenship Act and has spent his life advocating for “Hundreds of thousands of others like himself, now collectively known as the Lost Canadians, whose ranks have included such Canadian icons as Roméo Dallaire, Guy Lombardo, Leslie Nielsen, Ricky Gervais, and Nobel Prize winners Willard Boyle and Saul Bellow.” 

Sixteen-year-old Erin Brooks was born in Texas and raised in Hawaii to Canada-born daddy, Jeff, a second-generation Canadian. She wants to compete for Canada at the 2024  Paris Games, has lineage, speaks reasonable French (grandaddy is Québécoise from Montreal) and, likely, will medal at Teahupoo given her formidable skills at a wave that terrifies even the reigning men’s world champ. 

Chapman came across Erin Brook’s story a few month ago, contacted the family and told ‘em,

“I’m not a lawyer but I know the laws better than most anybody.” 

He says he went to the seat of power in Ottawa and was peppered with questions about Erin. They wanted to know her full story, her culture and identity.  

“They’re denying her identity. Erin Brooks could go compete for a lot of other countries but in her heart and her identity she’s Canadian. But they don’t want to give the appearance of her jumping the queue.” 

Chapman says the citizenship queue has eleven people in it; the immigration queue, 50,000.

To point out the absurdity of Canada’s citizenship laws, he gets me to read about a recent decision by PM Justin Trudeau to gift a new life to a girl who ran away from her parents in Saudi Arabia. 

“She had no connection to Canada, nothing, never stopped foot in Canada and Trudeau reaches out and says we want you, we’ll protect you.” 

Trudeau, a progressive who advocates for allowing the entry of half-a-million refugees, has been described as “a Pied Piper eagerly leading his once-rugged nation down a slippery slope where one will soon face the gas chamber merely for accidentally misgendering someone.”

Chapman tells another story of the freestyle skier Dale Begg-Smith, born and raised in Canada, and who wanted to compete at the Olympics under the Maple Leaf, was rejected, and then he won gold for Australia. At which point, Begg-Smith was branded a traitor by his countrymen. 

“Are they going to paint Erin Brooks with the same brush?” says Chapman. “Way to go Erin, everyone loves you except for Canada. Awful girl. What has she done to deserve this? That’s what they’ll do to Erin. She’ll pay a price for this.”

Chapman cites examples where Olympic athletes have slid straight into Canadian citizenship and says with a stroke of pen Erin Brooks could be riding for Canada within twenty four hours. 

As one reviewer wrote of Chatman’s book,

“It’s a tale of appalling treatment by what is allegedly one of the greatest countries in the world against its own citizens and all of the cloak and dagger, smoke filled room type of machinations which go on behind the scenes in an effort to save a loonie or two. Very sad, and yet, the kind of whistle blowing which is needed if anything at all is to change with re. to how big, impersonal governments treat their citizens, all the while heralding their inclusiveness and welcoming spirit.”

Gabriel Medina (left) celebrates pal Neymar Jr. Photo: World Surf League
Gabriel Medina (left) celebrates pal Neymar Jr. Photo: World Surf League

Surf star Gabriel Medina “close” pal Neymar Jr. takes off clothes!

A way forward for the beleaguered surf industry?

The surf industry is hurting. It is a known fact and not surprising though still sad. Sad like the dew on Neymar Jr.’s eyes. We used to tower above other industries in terms of “cool” and “style.” We used to parade down catwalks and models would look upon us with stars in their eyes. Movie stars wore us. Our titans ruled benevolently with names like Bob McKnight and Bob Hurley.

The world was our oyster and also Neymar Jr’s.

But then it wasn’t ours though still probably Neymar Jr.’s.

At first, the Quiksilvers, Billabongs, RVCAs, Hurleys and Rip Curls went into recession. They cut staff then cut staff again in various bids to “reorganize.” Next came selling to “management companies” or hedge funds that promised smarter and better “reorganization.” Finally all the brands were bundled into one brand dubbed Authentic Brands Group and turned into bath bomb companies.

Where to go from here?

While all hope seems lost, the aforementioned Neymar Jr. might provide an important key. You know the Brazilian soccer star as the “wildly close” pal of two-time world surf champion Gabriel Medina. The two regularly make splashes in Portuguese-language tabloids.

One, Midiario, wrote, “Communicators say that they (Medina and Neymar Jr.) have maintained a friendship since childhood, but it is not ‘normal’ to see that of men here.”

BeachGrit‘s Derek Rielly added, “Love rules, I think, and rarely fails to win.”

Might he have been prescient?

Enter Kim Kardashian

With the surf industry in tatters, Neymar Jr. has decided to take an underpants sponsorship from the newly launched Skims for Men.

Kim Kardashian co-founded the “shape wear” company that makes lounge wear, lingerie and accessories including bras, underwear, bodysuits. It now also makes men’s undergarments.

Kim Kardashian said, “To have an icon like Neymar Jr be the face of our launch campaign, along with NBA All-Star, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and NFL’s top Defensive Player Nick Bosa, I think speaks volumes to the way SKIMS has evolved into becoming a brand that can provide comfort for all audiences, not just for women.”

She did not sign, nor mention, Gabriel Medina but is that a possibility in the near future?

Kolohe Andino too?

Should BeachGrit quickly launch a men’s lingerie line in order to be on the bleeding edge of a “new-and-improved” surf industry?

Currently more questions than answers.

Influencer flirts with Oahu danger. Photo: Instagram
Influencer flirts with Oahu danger. Photo: Instagram

Influencers lured into dangerous Oahu surf with false advertising!

"They don’t see the danger, they just see it as some place beautiful and they want to jump in."

There are many dumb things to do on/for Instagram. Do a gender reveal party. Dress up the family up like Super Mario characters for Halloween. Create sandals from the moon and turtle shells. Delete all comments after being publicly accused of deception by an Academy Award-winning ex-girlfriend. Go somewhere in Oahu, take a selfie jumping off a cliff into the water and get swept out to sea.

China Walls, in the shadow of Diamond Head, is an ideal place for the latter. There is a beautiful park on the blue Pacific only thirty minutes from downtown Honolulu. The sun puts on a wonderful show when it sets though the wave, below, is one of the most dangerous on the island of Oahu. It is a left races along a lava shoal that turns into a scintillating cliff.

All very desirable and peak Instagram fire emoji-getter.

Except, as mentioned, disaster lurks.

On Thursday, a tourist from New York went to Oahu’s China Walls and jumped into the water. He hit his head on the lava ledge. The surf grabbed his body then attempted to take him down to Davey Jones’ Locker though thankfully, surfer Brian Lauro was there to save the day.

“I’ve seen bodies dragged all the way to the finger before and it was a big enough wave,” he told the local ABC news affiliate. “I was able to spot him in the water and he was face down right off the point of the finger. Right near where there were some surfers, but he was face down and unconscious in the water.”

Lauro brought the unconscious man to shore where paramedics intervened.

Blame Oahu tourist maps

Lauro blamed tourist maps that make Oahu’s China Walls look user-friendly.

TripAdvisor, a go-to resource for barneys, calls China Walls “breathtaking” and insists tourists go and jump and enjoy.

Hawaii Vacation Fun adds, “If you’re interested in geology or if you just want a nice backdrop for your family Hawaii vacation photo, make a quick stop at China Walls during your scenic Hawaii sightseeing adventure. Don’t worry… it’s not as boring as I just made it sound.”

Lauro shook his head. He said, “(The tourists) just don’t know the water, they don’t know the waves. They didn’t see the five signs entering the park that said the waves break on the ledges and it’s dangerous surf. It’s one of the most dangerous places in the state. They don’t see it that way, they just see it as some place beautiful and they want to jump in.”

Tourists, man.

Especially on Oahu.