Surf Dilemma: When a leashless longboard is careening toward the rocks do you save or sit and watch the end of its life?

What would you do?

I am currently very much under the weather, moreso, maybe, than I have ever been. What began as a little rattle in the lungs five-ish days ago has transmuted into a vicious fever hell. My eyeballs ache, my skin burns, I sweat so much at night that the bed turns into a drowning hazard. I cough, I sneeze, I try not to turn my head.

Now, usually I’ll fight through diseases, it being a figment of imagination and such, but this one has me. Thus, I found myself sitting on a bluff, this morning, watching perfect surf roll in, sad. The water was a perfect admiral, sun shining brightly, not one puff of wind. The wife was out getting it while I slumped, taking in the scene.

It was peaky enough across a few hundred yards, spreading the crowd just enough. A steady stream of wide-eye’d hopefuls bouncing past by rut clutching all manner of craft.

I watched a middle-aged longboarder trot down the path. Watched him start on his knees then transition to belly after first whitewash impact. I quickly forgot about him but ten, or such, minutes later, I saw his board bobbing and riding the crumble all alone. Leashless rider clearly misjudging.

It shot out of the back, halfway between lineup and shore, and I figured the man would make it in time but he did not as an inside wave picked it up and raced it toward large sharp boulders. I wobbled to my feet, momentarily, wondering if I should go help. To do so would have meant A) moving B) getting shoes wet C) maybe getting pants wet. And so I slouched back down and watched the worst surfboard beating I have ever seen.

The board was slammed into the boulders initially then slammed again, again, again, again. The surge would push it up on the rocks, suck it back off, then slam it into their sides. Again, again, again, again. It took the rider a solid five minutes to get in, grab his casualty and paddle back out.

He, smartly, did not assess damage.

Now, the question. Should I have risked pneumonia to save the log or did I do the right thing in watching its death?

Help!


Gudauskas brothers and Nathan Florence
The Gudauskas bro's in happier days with Pauly Van Doren, inset Sean Penn in the pivotal scene from Fast Times at Ridgemont High that sold a million checkerboard slip-ons, and Nathan Florence, yet to see a contract renewal despite being surfer of the year, super smart, funny etc.

Vans dumps Gudauskas brothers after 20 years of service in latest bloodletting with rumours Nathan Florence is next!

"You guys represent the most important part of surf culture, its family, passion for the ocean, and true STOKE!"

Not content with killing the Pipeline Masters, Vans gave the Christmas gift that keeps on giving (Misery! Poverty!) when it sacked five hundred workers as part of its plan to “speed up the turnaround of the company’s Vans division and (parent company VF’s) overall North America business.”

I love capitalism but, god, your cold heart!

And the blood-letting wasn’t confined to the cube-dweller, who always lives in fear of that inevitable tap on the shoulder, but extended to its most celebrated athletes including San Clemente’s beloved Gudauskas brothers.

Tanner, Dane and, what’s the third one’s name, Roy? (Hello Google? Pat? Oh Pat!) were all dumped by the brand after twenty years of wildly successful service, something not lost on the brothers’ storied followers.

 

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A post shared by Dane Gudauskas 🌌 (@danedamus)

Kelia Moniz, who lost her own battle with capitalism earlier today, wrote: “Man, You guys represent the most important part of surf culture, its family, passion for the ocean, and true STOKE! This will all remain true regardless of any sponsorship. So epic the path you have paved for the next gen.”

“To me you 3 were vans!” wrote Sage Erickson. “The classics! Enjoyed all you guys did for them!”

Laura Enever, “They were so lucky to have you guys!!!”

(Parker Coffin wrote exactly the same thing.)

“You 3 embodied the ethos of the brand!” wrote Ian Walsh.

 

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A post shared by Tanner gudauskas (@tannergud)

Word on the ground is the world’s most stylish surfer Mikey February flew himself to Hawaii for the Pipe Masters and is now in California trying to get a contract, like anything,  out of Vans.

And Nathan Florence, surfer of the year and easily the most valuable man in surfing, has yet to receive any sorta offer from Vans even as his contract runs into its last few weeks.

Its former global action sports director Justin Regan, who left Vans to work for Skull Candy, recently wrote a stinging rebuke of his former master under a post from Damon Way.

“It’s gotten to a point now where brands are releasing collaborations on a two-week cadence,” the creator of DC and Incase said on a Monster Children podcast. “It’s gotten to the point where none of it has value anymore.”

Regan responded, “This is 100 percent true. We were doing on a week for a while at Vans to feed a media cycle. It was totally devaluing.”

 

 

 

 

 


Breaking: Pipeline claims fifth surfer as horror season continues

Waves, uncrowded, clean, four-ish foot. The sorta day even mortals can tread the boards without exiting this mortal coil. Or at least you'd like to think so.

A little earlier today, around 11:04 Hawaiian time, a surfer was pulled unconscious from the water at Pipeline.

Waves, wildly uncrowded Pipeline, clean, four-ish foot. The sorta day even mortals can tread the boards at Pipeline without exiting this mortal coil. Or at least you’d like to think so.

Details of the surfer’s condition has yet to be released but our source at Pipe says the man was a relative Pipeline novice enjoying a month-long stay on the North Shore and was equipped with a helmet and an impact vest.

Watch the wipeout thirty-five seconds in and the rescue on the Surfline cam here.

It’s the fifth major incident of the North Shore season at Pipeline with world number four Joao Chianca, Tahitian kingpin Eimeo Czermak, Pipe regular Koa Rothman and Peruvian shredder Joaquin Del Castillo the big names injured only one month into the Hawaiian winter and proof it ain’t just kooks getting hurt.

And, apart from Koa and his banged up yet still photogenic face, each of the above surfers, Joao, Eimeo and Joquain, will be dealing with the long0-term effects of their wipeouts for years to come.

In a little back and forth exchange with Eimeo’s dad, turns out his kid is just hoping to get the use of his legs again, Joaquin has got multiple hip fractures and he don’t got the insurance to pay for the repairs and, as for Joao, ask Owen Wright what it’s like to get your head banged up at Pipeline.


Kelia Moniz (pictured) dropping hammers.
Kelia Moniz (pictured) dropping hammers.

Hawaiian surf royalty Kelia Moniz burns Roxy parent company Authentic Brands Group to ground on way out door!

Burn, baby, burn.

Hawaii’s Kelia Moniz is the absolute visual representation of effortless grace. The stylish longboarder is a two-time champion, multiple-time cover girl and, most importantly, surf royalty, hailing from the revered Moniz family. She is, in a word, indelible and has been a face of Roxy for nearly two decades.

As surf fans know, Roxy, along with Quiksilver, Billabong, RVCA et. al. was scooped up by licensing giant Authentic Brands Group a handful of months ago. Salaried positions were shredded, team riders cut, the very landscape changed.

Moniz, barring no holds, went directly after ABG today after getting told to take a 90% pay cut.

In a moving to-camera piece, Moniz declares the ride has been long, fun, crazy but now over before pivoting to the sad.

“Today, I’m announcing my departure from Roxy,” she says. She then thanks those who believed in her, her wonderful Roxy sisters. “This shit is real. So real, that many brands often try to replicate what we had. They’ll have a very hard time doing so because you can’t replicate real shit. You can’t replicate authentic friendship. You can’t replicate authentic stories. And that was a testament to the one and only Lisa Andersen. I’d like to thank her for paving the way on the path we all walk on today. Not just as a Roxy girl, but as a surfer. I genuinely love you.”

While the viewer is left to wipe away tears, the screen breaks then a voice can be heard asking, “So what was the real reason you’re leaving Roxy?”

Kelia Moniz, wasting no time, drops the hammer.

She explains how, after Covid, she signed a great contract, the best she had ever had. After ABG completed purchase, the contract was terminated and she was told she could come back for the aforementioned 90% off. “After years of fighting for fair pay and equality,” she says, “there was no was I was signing that deal, especially knowing I wasn’t the only athlete that this was happening to. I’m not about to be strong-armed by some corporation that knows nothing about the sport and doesn’t give a shit about it. If you’re wondering why I’m leaving, it’s not because I don’t love what I do… I’m leaving because if I sign this deal I’d be setting the industry standards for the girls who look like me and surf like me and I simply want nothing to do with that. The surf industry has been consolidated by two large corporations who don’t care that there has been a dismantling of the monetary value of a whole generation and I refuse to be part of it because it looks pretty on a spreadsheet.”

Essential.

Burn, baby, burn.


Sean Davey and wife Lane
Sean Davey and beloved wife Lane at Pipe.

Help wife of surf photography legend Sean Davey fight stage 4 colo-ovarian cancer

"They say that Lobsters mate for life. Lane is my Lobster. Please, please, please help me save my lobster."

One of the more likeable figures in the loosely strung together world called the surf community is the Australian photographer Sean Davey.

I met Sean when I was a junior editor at Surfing Life magazine many orbits ago.

And, then, long before the eyes became jaundiced, the limbs weary, the marrow cold, I would thrill to his submissions, which were noted for their vivid colour and a fanatical attention to detail in his exposure of transparency film that made technicians weep for their beauty.

Later, when I got the reins to the magazine, I made a point of throwing every bone I could at Sean Davey, enjoying his company on myriad trips. This included a wild sortie to the Philippines as we hunted the ghost of Mike Boyum.

During this time, Sean met and fell head-over-heels in love with an American gal who was one of the few women who would ride Pipeline. Pretty soon they married and carved out a life on the North Shore together.

Fast forward twenty seven years and Sean and his wife Lane are dealing with the two-pronged horrors of cancer and America’s cruel healthcare system.

 

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A post shared by Sean Davey (@sean_davey)

As Sean explains in a message to his friends, fans and surf family,

Friends and family all over this beautiful world of ours, I have some crushing news to share with you all. My wife of 27 years ; Lane has been recently diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic cancer. She is in the fight of her life right now.

Lane had her first infusion of chemotherapy yesterday. The procedure went better than expected but she was awake all night with nausea, which I guess is to be expected.

Though we both have had decent health insurance, Lane’s is about to finish due to the fact that as a professor, she is only employed on a semester by semester basis, and so Lane’s insurance might run out any time now. On top of that is the very likely scenario that Lane will need to go to the American mainland to get specialized care. She would have left on New Year’s day, but her condition has been deemed too serious to fly right now. So hopefully the chemo can shrink the cancer to a point where we can reach the next step in this process. Meanwhile, we are looking at some pretty major expenses coming up.

Some of the specialized care that Lane requires is not covered by the insurance and so it’s looking to be very expensive. Given the need for the specialized care, flights and upcoming operations, we are looking at an initial figure of $90,000. We really need all of your help to make this happen. Those of you who can contribute, please go to Lane’s GoFundMe page to donate, if you are able to. Any amount helps. For those of you who can’t afford to, PLEASE do what you can to spread the word to others. We really, really need ALL of your help right now to help Laneski beat this insidious disease. From the bottom of my heart, please know that we appreciate each and every one of you. Please help save my Laneski!

In the subsequent GoFundMe, Sean goes into a little more detail.

My wife, Lane “LaneSki” Davey is in the fight for her life against a Stage 4 colo-ovarian cancer associated with a 6cm mass that is blocking her intestine, causing a lot of pain and making it hard for her to eat. In the 6 months it took us to get a diagnosis, the cancer spread to her liver and lungs so at this point the only option for treatment is chemotherapy which she will start on Dec. 26, but since it is unlikely to cure her cancer, Lane is researching cutting edge facilities such as City of Hope (Az), the Burzynski clinic (TX), and the Turtle Band Clinic (NV) who specialize in advanced cancers. Costs of treatments at some of these centers run up to as much as 140,000 plus travel costs. We are also looking for a reasonably priced rental close by in Kahuku so Lane’s Mom can come and help out which will free up more time for me to work especially since Lane isn’t able to work at this time.

Lane and I met back in 1995 and were inseparable from the get-go. We married in late 1996 and I moved to Hawaii in 1997, where we’ve remained ever since. We were a great match with Lane being a pro surfer/ clothing designer at the time, while I was photographing for surf magazines all over the world.

The news has been so devastating to Lane who has spent the last 12 years serving as a full-time college lecturer and also acting as a part-time caretaker for her father with dementia while earning her Ph.D. that she finally completed last May. Lane is so dedicated to her students that she will stay up into the wee hours of the night grading resubmissions from students to make sure everyone has a chance to succeed in her class. This past semester, she spent a lot of time curled up in a ball on the floor before she would transition back to her computer to grade papers, answer emails, and prepare her lectures which often proceeded each worsening scan and diagnosis. You may have seen her out surfing with a smile on her face but that was after being up crying all night in pain. I know if anyone can beat this, my wife can.

Lane is a courageous and devout woman of faith who has always followed God’s call despite enduring a lot of opposition and difficult circumstances. I remember her paddling out to second and third reef Pipe when no one had ever seen women go anywhere near that. We would all sit on the beach and gasp as her 115-pound frame feathered on top of 12-foot sets and sometimes we watched her get annihilated by them but somehow she always found her way back to the beach. I remember Lane traveling the pro circuit with a surfboard under one arm and a sample bag under the other which contained her one-of-a-kind women’s surf line that she sold to 50 stores across the U.S. and Japan. Of course, everyone told Lane that women’s surfwear was a ridiculous idea and then they all eventually followed suit anyway, laying the groundwork for the amazing opportunities that women surfers enjoy today. In the 90s, Lane also began writing about the female surfing experience for a range of international magazines that I was shooting for and this eventually led her back to school because she wanted to document local legends in a lasting way. Her doctoral dissertation is one of the most extensive works on he‘enalu (surfing), detailing epic swells at Pipe and Bowls that Lane surfed daily for over thirty years and documented rigorously for about 20 in a blog she wrote for the Honolulu Advertiser and Oceanic Cable. She hopes to continue her research and publish them as books.

The cancer diagnosis has been a shock, to say the least since Lane, just 53, has no family history of cancer, eats healthy, exercises daily, and doesn’t drink, smoke, or do drugs to the point where she will rarely even accept an Advil. According to statistics, Lane is currently looking at a 2-9 month life expectancy if she doesn’t get help quickly. I can’t conceive of losing my soulmate and the mother of our three beloved dog babies Paumalu, Tazzy, and Kai Boy.

We just celebrated our 27th wedding anniversary just last week. I remember telling Lane way back in the mid 90’s that we would grow old together as a couple and I intend to stand by that pledge.

To be honest, I know Lane feels let down because she gave up a life of material gain to serve as a teacher and community activist for over 20 years, and in her time of need, neither the education system nor the health system has been there for her. Similarly, the surf industry largely refuses to recognize her contributions. So we sincerely ask for your prayers and your support. Any amount, big or small, not only funds Lane’s chances at life but fuels her fight to live because it shows her that people care and appreciate her service.

They say that Lobsters mate for life. Lane is my Lobster. Please, please, please help me save my lobster. 

Jump here if you want to kick the Daveys a shekel or two.