Madcap scenes at Waimea as Hawaii’s whip-slicked queen of taboo Mason Ho attempts to ride wildest rivermouth waves ever seen, “Ho is pyrotechnic, lifting off the screen in a blast of concussive booms!”
It’s been a wild ol December on the North Shore, “40mph storm winds, massive waves, torrential rain and even hail.”
These conditions conspired to create the scenario at Waimea Bay where Oahu’s Waimea River, which flows from the back of the valley, becomes so swollen all it takes is a bunch of shovels, a little sweat to bust it open and let it hit the oncoming surf to create what y’see here.
Mason fares poorly, which is rare given how strategic and methodical he is when it comes to these sorta novelty waves and at one point is washed out to sea.
Jamie O’Brien, whose shuck and jive you know well, wins the day.
Pipe King Jamie with brave little Ivan Florence in the background.
In world first, carrot-topped king of Pipeline delivers heart-stopping POV angle from Vans Pipe Masters, “Jamie O’Brien remains reliably close to perfect!”
For a man of almost forty years who looks like a hamburger on a griddle, an overgrown Annie doll, Jamie O continues to delight.
The 2003 Pipe Master, who is 190 pounds of rock hard muscle with 40 pounds of sturdy protective fat, and who once told me, “A big gut helps you breathe bigger and better” and who leaves no muffin unbuttered, has delivered a world first by recording his heat at the Vans Pipe Masters with a camera on his helmet.
For a man of almost forty years who looks like a hamburger on a griddle, an overgrown Annie doll, Jamie O’Brien continues to delight.
And, though the heat, which opens the day, is slow and operated under a day when the breeze is so light even the peach trees aren’t stirred, Jamie appears maddeningly cool.
We meet Nathan and Ivan Florence in the pre-contest crowd, we see the tiny ant people distant on the beach and we feel the turbulence of several wipeouts.
More than essential.
"The crowd factor is off the charts. The danger factor as well. It truly is a modern gladiator pit."
Hawaii’s Queen of Crazy Mason “Little Lulu” Ho in teeth-clenching form as he tames opening day at The Pipeline, “It was a completely ridiculous orgy where everyone is clothed!”
"The crowd factor is off the charts. The danger factor as well. It truly is a modern gladiator pit. Truly No Country For Men.”
It is very difficult to complain about a visually stunning eleven-minute short that documents adrenaline-pumping Pipe antics by pec-flexing alpha males.
On the eve of the Vans Pipe Masters, a controversial event that would deliver in spades despite its myriad doubters, Mason “Little Lulu” Ho stuns at the famous wave, riding a seven-foot-six surfboard proudly painted in the colours of trans-and-queer inclusion.
As Mason’s surfboard shaper Matt Biolos said after watching,
“Surfing is the only sport/activity/endeavor where one must compete just to get a chance to simply participate. Unless you’re in a wave pool, or possibly in the Arctic Circle, just catching a wave usually requires competing with others, for positioning and priority. There’s no finer example of this than out at the Banzai Pipeline. Mason and Rory’s latest edit hammers that home, pretty clearly. The crowd factor is off the charts. The danger factor as well. It truly is a modern gladiator pit. We often surf in similar crowd density down at Lowers, but geeze, it’s in mushy, head-high waves, with zero consequence. Halfthe surfers are intermediate, one quarter are old and soft (like me) one eighth (or more) are little kids and finally one-eighth might be pro-level fast and fit surfers. But, this Pipeline crowd is insane. One hundred fast, fit, strong and psycho, expert to pro-level surfers, hucking themselves over and under the ledge….and no taking turns. Ruthlessly Competing. Truly No Country For Men.”
“There is towering dignity, yes. But the self-effacing bit is nonsense. Or not nonsense, exactly. It is strategic and disarming."
Greatest surfer ever at Pipeline Gerry Lopez stars in revealing new documentary by Stacy Peralta, “He is incredibly calculating and shrewd. He’s the last mysterious man in surfing!”
"Lopez rode Pipeline like Audrey Hepburn stepping out of a cab on 5th Ave.”
Did you know that the Hawaiian surfer Gerry Lopez, who is seventy-four, is the star of a new documentary made by the award-winning filmmaker and former skate star Stacy Peralta?
Oh of course you didn’t.
We eat up our stars, lick the bones and then go back to our crass TikTok lives.
A seventy-four-year-old man? Eee-yew!
Gerry, of course, ain’t no ordinary surfer.
When I hit surf historian Matt Warshaw about Gez, he left little doubt to his explosive influence at Pipeline.
“He catwalked the hell out of it,” said Warshaw. “He invented it. Nobody catwalked Pipe before Gerry. Jock Sutherland, my third-favorite surfer as a kid, rode Pipeline like he had a stick of dynamite up his ass. Lopez rode it like Audrey Hepburn stepping out of a cab on 5th Ave.”
A little misstep in the film, small, not fatal, is reference to Lopez’ supposed modesty.
“There is towering dignity, yes. But the self-effacing bit is nonsense. Or not nonsense, exactly. It is strategic and disarming. Lopez, and I say this with the utmost respect, is incredibly calculating and shrewd,” says Warshaw. “You only ever see what he wants you to see, when and where he wants you to see it. Which makes him, in this live-streaming tell-everything age, all the more attractive. He’s the last mysterious man in surfing.”
As for his surfing,
“At the height of his powers, if you’d stacked the reputation of every other big-dick surfer into a pile, it would have come up just below Gerry’s chin.”
"Holy shit, what the hell!" says Nathan.
Sexy Only Fans star and powerlifter dubbed “world’s smartest surfer” releases barely fathomable POV footage of an Irish big-wave session even he describes as “unrideable” and the wipeouts “hectic!”
In the dying light of a winter’s afternoon in County Clare, Ireland, we find Nathan Florence,the Only Fans star and brother of US Olympian John John, challenging the noted Irish big-wave Rileys.
Florence, who is a twenty-eight-year-old married powerlifter, says he “rode barely any waves” and that the sets were only useable via jetski assist.
“Towing was Russell Bierke, Conor Maguire and Ollie O’Flaherty. They were absolutely sending it. They did offer me the rope if you were wondering, I declined to tow, just wasn’t feeling it. Almost no waves were made so just made a decision to not push at this time, sometimes gotta listen to the gut!”
Yeah, this short is eleven minutes of waiting for something to happen, but the POV angle during these sessions is a favourite theatrical genre of mine.