Who would’ve thought, twenty-two years ago when Kelly Slater retired from the pro tour with six world titles, that he’d be darting around on the tour, and putting us all in a merry spin in his freesurfs, in his forty-ninth year.
This two-and-a-half-minute short shows Kelly in Hawaii and performing bareback gymnastics that, I hate to admit, would seem beyond the reach of most men his age.
I watched this and was transfixed.
The sheer animal ferocity of the man is frightening.
Mason comes over the mountaintop with daddy Mike's convoy on his backdoor.
Watch: Mason Ho give his Tommy Peterson Fireball Fish a tubesteak shine!
There was a time in the mid-nineties when the idea of owning a Tom Peterson-shaped Fireball Fish would send you crying, with happy, into the silk folds of your kimono.
And, as fate would play it, Tom, then known as the little brother of the very famous Michael aka MP, had his shaping bay around the corner from my first job.
Tom would visit every day, terrible breath but a lovely spirit, and regale with tales of his brother.
I didn’t buy one of his Fireball Fishes because, then, as today, money finds it hard to escape from my zippered pockets, much to my regret etc.
Mason Ho has never had to buy surfboards and so when family friend Tom hand delivered a Fireball Fish, which is a channel bottom fish with a step-tail, cut to Mason’s especially little dimensions, all he had to do was wax and ride.
Which you can watch below. Includes very good, if brief, cameos from daddy Mike and little sis Coco.
Coromandel exploring with little Billy, not quite dwarfish, and Luke, biggish.
Surfing in New Zealand sucks: “$1300 on petrol, 7,300 cubic liters of carbon into the atmosphere in search of best waves on Coromandel peninsula!”
Two days ago, Luke loosed episode nine of the One and a Half Men series he makes with the almost-WCT level pro Billy Stairmand, who is rated number sixty-nine on the WQS and whose diminutive size (not quite dwarfish but short) juxtaposes nicely, in a comical sense, with Luke’s six-three frame.
In this episode, we find Luke and Billy searching for waves on New Zealand’s fabled Coromandel Peninsula, a fifty-mile digit of land that sticks out on the north-east coast.
Gets real good waves. If you can find ’em.
“Billy & Luke spend $1300 on petrol, sing 79 duets and release 7,300 cubic liters of carbon in to the atmosphere in search of the best beach on the Coromandel peninsula,” writes Luke in the episode description.
At episode’s conclusion, Luke sings as Billy beatboxes, “Because I am me I have a shit time. It’s like I killed a group of children in a previous time. In my past life I did some very bad things and this is karma catching up on me. I DID SOME BAD THINGS IN MY PAST LIFE AND NOW FUCKING KARMA IS CATCHING UP ON ME! AND I FUCKING, FUCKING HATE THE COROMANDEL! WHY IS IT ALWAYS SHIT AND CLOSING OUT FOR ME! FUCK!”
Worth your nine minutes.
Champ Italo and coach Shane Dorian.
Watch: “Surfers are frequently, secretly fond of each other!”
There's many a strange impulse to be found behind-the-scenes at the 2019 Pipeline Masters…
This is a fascinating, if formless, gem from Red Bull, twenty-two minutes of fly-on-the-wall footage from 2019’s Pipeline Masters, won by Italo, made entertaining by Gabriel’s Machiavellian ways, provincial innocence meets metropolitan cunning etc.
Here you can eavesdrop on conversations between Kelly Slater and Shane Dorian, see surf media folk fall in love with their pro surfer quarries, hear Yadin Nicol admit he would’ve shut down Mick Fanning’s 2013 world title dreams for a shot at a Pipe semi if only he’d had the “yoda” skills of Gabriel Medina, Jon Pyzel telling a story of blowing off teenager Italo for a sponsorship and quite a deal more.
An occasion to be treasured.
The best tuberiding sequence in a movie since Greenough's ancient masterpiece Innermost Limits of Pure Fun.
Watch: Mason Ho’s POV masterpiece: “Let the lame have their spinal cords so electrified they can now do gymnastics!”
This is a six-minute short that will pin your arms behind your back and pop open the sweet little buttons on your sweet little pink dress.
In it, we find Mason Ho with the new GoPro Hero 8, a tiny high-end POV camera that captures his tuberiding with such fidelity you feel like you could reach out and start tweaking Mason’s nips as if you were grabbing pinches of salt.
I suspect that over the course of the North Shore season, with Mason dropping clips every other day, you might’ve felt like you’ve seen all there is to see from the thirty-year-old son of Sunset Beach’s Michael Ho.
The tuberiding sequence that form the middle part of the film will hypnotise with its detail, the movement of hips, arms, eyes and feet.