Jamie O’Brien vs Ben Gravy in “New York is a sucked orange!”

Flame-haired King of Pipe leaves swell of the year to go tanker surfing in New York with the vlogger Surfer magazine hates!

Of all the Jamie O vlogs, this captures, I think, the essence of the weekly video: a mostly pointless snapshot of famous surfers squeezing often unripe oranges for whatever juice they can get.

Here, we see a cross-pollination of surf vlog stars Jamie O’Brien and Ben Gravy as Jamie and filmer cross the Pacific Ocean to meet Gravy in New Jersey and, later, to travel together to New York.

Gravy, you know as the vlogger Surfer magazine ghosted at their annual awards last month when they refused to include him among the nominations for best web series, which was eventually won by Rip Curl’s The Search.

“(Rejection) formed me into the person I am today. I am a self-made person. I started that way and I’ll probably end that way,” said Ben.

Jamie’s vlog, of course, is a guilty treat like taking out your surfboards and laying them tenderly on the bed or hard kisses that leave little flecks of blood on your lips.

Watch as Jamie goes to New Jersey, gets cold, goes to New York, follows squirrels and, as a finale, rides a one-foot wave next to a tanker.

A highlight of the episode is his response to subscribers’ questions.

Morgan King writes, “Jamie comes off as a self centred tool to be honest.”

Another asks how he handled being dropped-in on at Pipe by a bodyboarder.



Watch NZ shredder Kehu Butler in, “Hello, Gorgeous!”

Meet a surfer from New Zealand whose tang may be sweeter even than the fabled Ricardo Christie!

This four-minute short of the up-and-coming surfer Te Kehukehu Butler is made by the Gold Coast-based filmer Billy Lee-Pope, whose name you might’ve seen on our Anonymous clips.

Billy, who grew up at Raglan, and Te, who is eighteen and from Mount Maunganui and who finished fifth at the World Juniors, spent one year working on this edit.

“I met Kehu about a year ago through a mutual friend who was staying with me on the Gold Coast. Kehu is a good kid, he’s a classic, hard case, typical, Maori,” says Billy, 20, who got into the camera jockey biz  when he was twelve when he got a hand-me-down Sony point and shoot that had a video option. “When I was 18 I purchased a DSLR set up just for fun, but eventually the excitement of doing surf trips and creating little surf edits got the better of me and I dropped out of my first year of marketing to pursue when I was 20!”

It’s a sprightly catalogue.

Watch big-waver Natxo Gonzalez in: “I will have my glory day in the hot sun!”

Swollen muscle pressing against lungs! Perfect ten at Nazare! Follow the Basque gunslinger on the big-wave world tour.

In this compelling twelve-minute short, we follow the Basque surfer Naxto Gonzalez as he competes in the first two events of the big-wave tour, at Nazaré, Portugal, and Jaws, which is on the island of Maui, in the United States of America.

At Nazaré, Natxo, who is twenty-three, knifes a ten in his semi, and eventually finishes third; at Jaws, we go behind-the-scenes of that rather odd day where the event was cancelled because the waves were too big, the contest being finished in what Albee Layer described as “windy, small, average.

Natxo has a bit of an Owen Wright moment. He wipes out, goes home, spends the next day crawling around in agony. He is eventually hospitalised with some sort of swollen muscle pressing against his lungs.


Watch: Chas Smith and Rob Machado go to the Supermarket!

And where pushy Rob introduces Chas to his new four-fin only surfboard, the Seaside…

A couple of weeks before Christmas, the former tennis player turned world title contender and one-time foil to Kelly Slater, Rob Machado, visited the Seaside Supermarket in Cardiff, California.

Mr Machado was in urgent need of corn chips, salsa and beer. By coincidence, Chas sought a replenishment of his bar cart.

In the carpark conversation that ensues between the two old pals, Rob introduces Chas to his new surfboard model for Firewire (within his subset of Machado Surfboards), called The Seaside.

The surfboard, which is an update of last year’s Go Fish twin-fin model, was built around it being a quad. Rob had never ridden four-finners and was thrilled by the idea of designing a sled, and all its curves, around a board that could only be set-up as a quad.

(Rob also designed a set of small-wave quad fins to complement the board. They are Futures, of course, the official fin of BeachGrit and the fin system used by John John Florence, Jordy Smith etc.)

Rob tested the boards tuberiding capabilities at smallish (four-to-six-foot) Teahupoo, and in the weak but reasonably good quality waves at his homebreak, Seaside.

“Sexy outline, sleek curves. It’s fast, catches more waves…turns on a dime!” Rob tells Chas.

Does Chas buy Rob’s spiel?


Watch: Jack Robinson in “The Boy Who Carries His Own Lightning!”

It's a special gift, intangible, which bridges the gap between adequacy and greatness…

There are some performers, rare as blue butterflies, who carry around their own lightning. It has nothing to do with the sponsor stickers on their boards or how many contests they’ve won or how many times they’ve surfed Pipeline, although all that helps.

When the camera hits them, sock.

Kelly had it and Andy Irons. Medina and Toledo. And this medium-sized boy with “big bones and long muscles”, who turns twenty-one in three days and who has a head of hair that looks like a bale of hay that’s just exploded, named Jack Robinson.

He grew up in Margaret River, still lives there, and is the sort of surfer who will tear any visitor to shreds in a one-on-one heat.

This short film, if it was played to a cinema audience, would be greeted with rapturous applause. It’s the manifesto of a young man, told with authority.