Currents




“Go back, we stuffed it up.”

You’ve seen the meme, the evolution of man from Australopithecus to smartphone user, the latter turning back around and informing his simian ancestors that the future ain’t so bright after all and they’re better off climbing back up the tree. Now put an evolving surfboard under the arm of each evolving monkey, put a hipster beard on the guy doing the U-turn and you’ve got yourself a perfect metaphor for surfing today.

Okay, before we get going, I’ve got to state outright for the record that I’m not hipsterist, and I’m going to invoke the “some of my best friends are hipsters” defence before going any further. I, like most of you, have hipster tendencies. I own retro-twins, I surf a fish, I own a front-zip long arm wetsuit jacket although I never surf it unzipped. I do however refuse to grow a beard, as in combination with a bald head it comes across more meth cook than cool 70s throwback.

The hipster surfer is a popular whipping boy. Between the oh-so faux retro, the irony of self-parody, the analogue-this and the artisan-bullshit-that, the all-consuming quest for pointless cool they’re easy targets. With so many cultural reference points being drawn from eras other than their own, hipsterism has been labeled the “dead end of Western civilisation”. Since we came down from the trees we’ve been engineered to go forward. No generation is born to be more useless than the last. That’s Darwinism. That’s life. But hipsterism in its purest form has turned its back on their evolutionary duty to progress the species. Their generation will be remembered in time for being someone else’s generation.

But you gotta ask yourself why the hipster mentality seems to be so over-represented in surfing today? And I’m not just talking a clichéd core sample taken from The Pass at Byron on a two-foot day. Looking widely at surfing right now, we’ve become a largely backwards-facing culture. It seems there’s a little bit o’ hipster in all of us. We’ve emerged from decades where everything new in surfing was good and cool and right. Where surfing moved forward in quantum leaps, where you actively tried to surf harder than everyone else, where you actively tried to surf differently to everyone else. Where surfing was bigger, faster, deeper, higher, and everything was calibrated to achieve that. So why now does “cooler” seem to be the dominant measure, and why are we so obsessed with where surfing has already been?


"But you gotta ask yourself why the hipster mentality seems to be so over-represented in surfing today? And I’m not just talking a clichéd core sample taken from The Pass at Byron on a two-foot day."



Maybe we’ve hit a natural progress plateau. Maybe we’ve jumped so quickly in the past 30 years that all progress from here is incremental, and in the absence of big leaps forward we’re simply getting bored and looking backwards for ways to keep us entertained. The thruster is 35 years old, and the most significant challenger to it as a performance vehicle – the quad – has been around in various forms for most of that time. There’s also an argument that the most progressive surfer today – certainly the guy trying hardest at it – is 42 years old. Programmed in another time, Kelly Slater is genuinely perplexed why people would jump on a board that wouldn’t allow you to surf your best. But Kelly is an exceptional case on several levels, and certainly not a part of a generation conditioned on thinking looking good and surfing good are the same thing.

Maybe it’s simple demographics driving this obsession. If you believe the cultural parable surfing has always been the domain of youth, yet a snap poll conducted during my surf at Winkipop this morning had three quarters of the line-up north of 30 years of age, and a quarter of the line-up without their own teeth or hair. They all grew up in eras that are now being treated as holy, and these guys are now of an age where early onset “all-timers disease” kicks in and they start taking a nostalgic interest in everything from their youth.

Or maybe, as our friend in the meme puts it so succinctly, we’ve just fucked surfing up, and fucked it up royally. The Jaded Index, if there were one, would be off the charts right now. In the post-surf industry boom there’s been a huge correction back to soul and roots. If you use pro surfing as a barometer it’s never divided surfers the way it does right now. We’ve farmed surfing out to whoever wanted to buy a piece of it, and from coast to coast the resultant rabble little resembles what surfing once was when it was a secret society.

But yet is looking back such a dead end? Maybe in fact we’re hurtling forward through evolutionary time, just looking backwards while doing so. If you’re using fins as your measure, then Derek Hynd’s de-evolution, riding without any fins at all, might yet be the most evolutionary act of our time. He’s taken a concept as old as surfing time itself – a plank – and fused it deftly with a hundred years of shaping evolution. Then you look at a guy like Craig Anderson, who better than anyone alive blends 70s style and great 70s hair with modern limitlessness.

Through all this we’ve been remiss to chicane around that other defining trait of the surfing hipster, probably the most defining one… just how goddamn nauseatingly happy they seem to be. Incredibly good-natured, inhabiting a place beyond irony, my hipster friends will laugh at this column that’s laughing at them. Cruising along a wave, their mind free and unburdened by the pressing need to turn, simply soaking it all in, these guys wouldn’t be anywhere else on Earth. To them that is going forward, and who’s to say they’re not right? For what exactly constitutes progress? Is it higher, faster, further, or is it enlightenment and looking impossibly cool?

Sean Doherty on… De-evolution

You’ve seen the meme, the evolution of man from Australopithecus to smartphone user, the latter turning back around ...



Well, it had everything didn't it? J Bay was the event of the ASP season so far. Bombing waves, flawless point break surfing, and a precious little frenchmen by the name of Jeremy Flores losing his shit, again.

But getting gypped by the judges can be the least of your worries in South Africa. We cover Aritz Aranbaru's forlorn tale (courtesy of Surf Europe) about getting locked up in a Johannesburg prison on his way to the Mr Price Pro in Durban. Surfers get caught "harassing" whales, Firewire delivers us an eco-revolution and the ASP Big Wave World Tour: Riding giants or a giant fizzier?

Dorian gets the bomb at Puerto, but what about underground charger Gabriel Villarean? Where's the hype for his effort?

It's also comeback week on Ain't That Swell. Aussie Puerto pioneer, Gary Hughes returns to Mexico to charge Mex Pipe at 50 something years old and Jai Abberton makes his return to Ours. To celebrate these two icons, we take a look at surfing's top five all-time comebacks.


Ain't That Swell Episode 8

Well, it had everything didn't it? J Bay was the event of the ASP season so far. Bombing waves, flawless point break surfing, and a precious little frenchmen by the name of Jeremy Flores losing his shit, again.



Visionary / Film Lord / Bearded dude


SW: The Academy of Motion Pictures delivers you a lifetime achievement Oscar. What’s the opening line of your acceptance speech?
TS: Spike Jonze hands me the trophy and I’d say, “I know that dude… You know, all I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz and I’m fine.” 

You direct a re-make of Big Wednesday with unlimited budget and the cast of your choice. Give us the actor and the stunt double for the following characters…
Matt Johnson: James Franco with stunt surfing by Dane Reynolds.
Leroy the Masochist: Owen Wilson with stunt surfing by Owen Wright.
Jack Barlow: Michael Cera with stunt surfing by Noa Deane.
Bear: Danny McBride with stunt surfing by Jordy Smith.
Gerry Lopez: Craig Anderson and he would do his own stunts.

You can go back in time and film the one wave you missed or taped over from your early years as a video guy. Whose is it?
When I was filming for Momentum 2 I missed the first part of a Ross Williams combo. He was so mad he didn’t talk to me for a week. Whenever we have a couple beers the tension still comes out about it. Sorry Ross, now can you let it go?

George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Francis Ford Coppola and John Milius invite you to join the esteemed Bearded Directors of Hollywood League. Do you sign up or go into the bathroom and shave?
Of course I sign up! I haven’t shaved in over a year hoping they will call. I stay awake at night staring at my phone. “Please ring!” But it’s only ever an Indian voice asking if I’d like to take part in a survey.

You’re paddling between two islands when all of a sudden you feel compelled to slink off your board and just lie there… drifting… what’s going through your mind at this point?
“Dude, where’s my car?”

The title of the best surf movie you never made? What’s it about?
BREAKOUT! It’s about a bunch of under-privileged kids that are trying to get out of the ghettos by surfing and singing pop music. Tagline: “Whether it’s ocean waves or sound waves these guys are breaking all the rules.” 
 
Would Jon Swift really enjoy playing guitar more than getting paid millions of dollars to make atomic weapons? Really?
Money or groupies it’s a tough choice. He has no regrets. 
 
Which number is better 12 or 37?
37, no reason why. Who needs reasons?
 
You have to erase from existence one film from your back catalogue. Which do you choose and why?
I’d erase Momentum. Crooked horizons, too many Bad Religon songs, tons of shots that are out of focus, but mainly Kelly would pay me a lot of money to lose that fight scene with Paul Roach. 

You wake up in an alternate reality where cameras and film making don’t exist. Describe what you’d be doing today?
I’d be a slacker.


Illustration by Nanda Ormond.

Hypothetical: Taylor Steele

The Academy of Motion Pictures delivers you a lifetime achievement Oscar. What’s the opening line of your acceptance speech?



Age: 16
Provenance: Ulladulla, NSW


Russ was born on the North Shore of Oahu and moved to Ulladulla with his family aged 5. His pedigree exposes his preference for airdrops down mountainous waves over air reverses. Kirk, his Dad, lived on the North Shore for 15 years surfing the outer reefs and shaping boards for Jamie Sterling, Mark Healey and a few other guys. “It’s come a lot from my Dad,” said Russ. “He’s taught me everything I know about big waves. He makes all my boards and we talk a fair bit about board design. It’s pretty sick.”

Russ’s first experience in solid waves was a sign of things to come. “I went to Bells Beach when I was 12 and it was huge. Dad tried to paddle out from the sand but almost got washed onto The Button so we paddled out a kay or two from Centreside, the next beach over. There were only four or five guys out… they were wondering what a young kid was doing out there… I was wondering the same thing. I only got one, probably a solid 10 foot wave, but that hooked me. That was the start of it all.”





Last year Russ linked up with Kelly Slater on a mission to score slabs in the Australian desert. “He called me into one of the best waves of my life,” he said. “I could hear him yelling, ‘Go! Go! Go!’ from the channel so I knew I had to put my head down. I barely made the take off and looked up and thought, Ahh I’m way too deep. For some reason it kept pushing me through the barrel and I ended up getting blown out the end. It was pretty unreal. I’m glad I didn’t blow it in front of him. It was cool hanging with him for a few days.”

Russ told me he wants to make a career out of all this. He said he wants to chase swells as much as he can. “It’s being appreciated a lot more now, especially compared to when my Dad was young,” he reasoned.

It’s funny how things come full circle. Where Kirk helped Healey and Sterling into careers that didn’t quite exist yet, those same guys have made a future possible for Russ. Whatever comes next… for this grom, you can bet it’s gonna be big.

– Lucas Townsend

Next… Russell Bierke

Russ was born on the North Shore of Oahu and moved to Ulladulla with his family aged 5. His pedigree exposes his preference for airdrops down mountainous waves over air reverses.



Nuthin’ like a couple of tipi’s at Newport to get the ol’ heart pumping. You want sour cream and sweet chilli with that?



Wedgeville

Nuthin’ like a couple of tipi’s at Newport to get the ol’ heart pumping. You want sour cream and sweet chilli with that?



In Australia, the term “seagull” actually refers to the Silver Gull. A byword for unconstrained greed, their un-hinging jaws allow them to eat objects bigger than their own heads. The scientific name Chroicocephalus novaehollandiae comes from Greek, meaning “Australian bird capable of eating objects larger than its own head”. They were already here when Europeans turned up. It is not known how they survived before fried food and litter.

Seagulls are very common. They are now thought to be nearly as numerous as baristas, although research indicates they are more widely liked. Despite their prevalence, seagulls have made only two appearances in the history of human culture: the first was Chekov’s eponymous play, often quoted by pretentious undergrads (to extract yourself from any such conversation it is only necessary to say “He stole it – it’s just Hamlet for Russians”). The second was David Williamson’s play The Club, in which star recruit Geoff Hayward likes to play footy stoned, with this result: “Five minutes after you smoke it your head lifts right off your shoulders. I wasn’t looking out into the crowd, incidentally, I was watching a seagull. Not just an ordinary seagull. It was the prince of seagulls, dazzling me with blasts of pure white every time its wings caught the sun.”


Seagulls are very common. They are now thought to be nearly as numerous as baristas, although research indicates they are more widely liked.


Because of the quite serious issue of gulls being struck by balls or trampled underfoot, major arenas have tried using birds of prey to frighten them off – finally, a commercial application for the very cool hobby of falconry.

Seagulls are synonymous with the beach, but have never been accorded the sea-faring cred of the albatross or the petrel. They have about as much open-ocean gravitas as an inflatable dinghy.

From a distance, roosting gulls on the low tide rocks look remarkably like sesame seeds on a Japanese gyudon. As a result, it is possible to become very hungry through staring at them for too long while surfing. Sometimes a gull will lose a leg to a pelagic fish while sitting on the ocean’s surface. Sometimes they will fake this injury to garner sympathy. They are nothing if not adaptable.

Their sound is the sound of summer, the discordant music to our transition from carpark to sea, as they bicker and scrap over chips thrown from car windows. If ever you meet someone who can convincingly imitate a seagull’s scrrraw! shout them a wave. It’s a very difficult thing to do.

No-one has ever seen a baby seagull. Although the Wikipedia entry on Silver Gulls claims to show a photograph of juveniles, this only proves you should never do your research on Wikipedia.

– Jock Serong

A Short History of... The Seagull

In Australia, the term “seagull” actually refers to the Silver Gull. A byword for unconstrained greed, their un-hinging jaws allow them to eat objects bigger than their own heads.



... Tom Curren at J-Bay, 2009
By Kai Otton

Curren was there to surf against Occy in a Clash-of-the-Icons battle as a little side feature to the Billabong Pro World Tour event. No shit, I was more excited about seeing the Occy and Curren match-up than I was to compete at J-Bay. I was having a bit of meltdown at the time. I’d had a shitty run of results and a heat loss to Marco Polo in Brazil totally broke me.

I wasn’t in a good way. I’d let my hair get all dreaded and filthy, grew a massive beard and spent most of the first week of the waiting period hiding from people in the dunes meditating and watching the ocean.

The only thing that put a smile on my face each day was watching Curren surf Jeffreys. I’d grown up worshipping Tom, hammering VHS tapes of all his sections in Sonny Miller’s Rip Curl Search films. I loved his mysto vibe and the way he could ride just about any board and make it work. So even in my defeated state I got psyched seeing Tom there.

I’ve definitely seen more high-performance surfing in my time but to me that isn’t necessarily the best surfing. Over the course of that first week at J-Bay I was freaking on Curren’s energy and I’ve never enjoyed watching someone else surf so much. He surfed those walls with pure style and drew cool lines I’d never seen with my own eyes. He was also surfing more than anyone else there.

Just watching him made me happy and pulled me out of my funk. When his heat with Occy rolled around it was a perfect offshore day with 4 to 5 foot walls running from Boneyards through Supers.

Everyone knew they were witnessing something special and the old boys didn’t disappoint. I got crazy goosebumps when they ran down to big screams and applause form the crowd.

Tom had this board from Channel Islands called “The Tangent” that looked to be a part of him. It was a normal 6’1” shortboard and he was doing all the turns that anyone on the WCT that year were doing. I would’ve freaked if he was in the contest and drew him in a heat.

Inspired by Tom’s surfing I got my head straight and had one of my best events before being totally ripped off against Joel Parkinson in the semis. Ha!

A couple of months later I travelled to India by myself to starve my inner demons on a full detox. I didn’t eat for a week and had two colonic irrigations a day for the duration of the 10 day trip. After that trip I realised that life on Tour was pretty damn good and I’ve been loving it ever since. Cheers Tom.






Sean Doherty remembers Curren and Otto at J-Bay

In J-Bay that year I actually thought Otto might be living in the bushes overlooking the point. He was wearing this dirty khaki jacket and had the biggest ginger bushranger beard that had sticks and bugs in it. This was years before hipster beards so amongst all the clean-cut Tour guys prancing around the place he kind of stood out. He actually looked a bit like Doc, the old hermit who actually did live in the bushes at J-Bay.

The waves were flat for the first few days, so the boys were kicking the footy around a lot. There was this big open yard overlooking the point, and as soon as Otto heard the sound of the ball being kicked he’d just appear out of the scrub and grab the ball and start leaping around like Gary Ablett. Even though he’s from NSW Otto played Aussie Rules growing up, so he was calling out all the league guys about how shitty their kicking was, throwing dummy handpasses to no one, fully playing an imaginary Aussie Rules game with himself. I think he was going through some issues at the time but it was kind of hard to tell cause when he’s happy he can be a misery guts, and when he’s a misery guts he comes across happy.


He actually looked a bit like Doc, the old hermit who actually did live in the bushes at J-Bay.


When the swell came up the place just fired. From Boneyards through Supers was like a rifle barrel, but then the Impossibles section further down had all sanded up and was breaking like Kirra… and that’s where Curren posted. Unless you walked down the point a bit you couldn’t really see him – classic Curren – but he was toying with that section, kick-stalling and snake-turning to match his speed to the wave’s. Guys were walking down there just to watch.

Otto surfed out of his skin in the contest. Just started surfing upside-down on his backhand and made it all the way through to the semis where he had the misfortune of drawing Parko, who was never going to lose that contest. That was his best result on Tour and it really lifted him. You could see it. No one had really given him a chance in that contest and he could have won it.

The best surfing I have ever seen ...

Curren was there to surf against Occy in a Clash-of-the-Icons battle as a little side feature to the Billabong Pro World Tour event.



Want a signed premium edition of Simon Anderson’s award winning book, Thrust? Of course you do. All you have to do is fill out our short and sharp little survey and you’ll be in the running. Too easy.

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Win a Signed Limited Edition of Thrust

Want a signed premium edition of Simon Anderson’s award winning book, Thrust? Of course you do. All you have to do is fill out our short and sharp little survey and you’ll be in the running. Too easy.


Australian Prime Minister, Tony Abbot gives US president Barack Obama a malibu. Well, isn't that just dandy. Now we can all just ride off into the sunset "sharing the stoke," as it were. NOT ON OUR FUCKING WATCH! It will be a cold day in the Mentawais when we accept soap dodging politicians into the fold. SCAB! SCAB! SCAB!

Surfing in Alaska: eating seal and "shitting black," as Alex Gray puts it, and scoring mind-boggling tubes along the freezing arctic frontier. De Passage: the Reef surfing film that left me rock hard and confused.

Texas Walker Ranger comes to the Gold Coast to clean the scum from the Superbank. This week's Classic Moment takes us to the Banzai Pipeline for Californian Joey Buran's breakthrough victory in 1984.

And we finish up with pro surfing's rich list. Who is the best paid surfer in the world? We gotta say we didn't see this coming.

*This week's program also features tracks from seven surf bands that actually rip.

Like us on Facebook, here: facebook.com/aintthatswell


Ain't That Swell Episode 7

Australian Prime Minister, Tony Abbot gives US president Barack Obama a malibu. Well, isn't that just dandy...

21, Honolulu


SW: You get a wildcard into the men’s event of your choosing. Which do you pick?
Oh, this is really gnarly. It’s tough because the guys have great waves and watching them surf Teahupoo and Pipe is amazing but the thing is they surf those waves at eight to 12 feet whereas I only surf those waves at four to six feet, so I was gonna say Trestles but we’ve got that on Tour now, so I think something that would challenge me but not be death-defying would be J-Bay.

Would you rather have a great white swim under your board or a giant spider run across your face?
Having a shark swim under me is not okay. A spider running over my face… no worries.

You start an all-girl band with two members from the current Women’s Tour. What’s it called?
I’d have Steph Gilmore because she can play guitar and I’ve been hanging with Alessa Cuizon and she’s a great dancer and she has a voice too. We’d be called Small Fries, because it feels really catchy and I just saw it on the back of a girl’s t-shirt.

Which number, 12 or 37?
12. My favourite number is three. One plus two is three. Three times four is 12.

Who would play you in the movie of your life?
I’d hope Jennifer Lawrence, I love her, I have a girl crush. She’s awesome. She’s just super cool in all her interviews and she rocks.

You have to rock either an afro or cornrows for the next year. Which do you choose?
An afro. I don’t like cornrows. An afro has a lot more ba-ba-ba-boom, it’s much more sexy. Beyoncé rocks the afro sometimes, so why not?

You get the wave of the season at Pipeline on the busiest day of the year. Do you claim it?
I would totally claim it! [Laughs] I would have my hands in the air then I’d be holding my face and be that stoked that I made it I wouldn’t care about how uncool I looked. Then me and Small Fries would play a celebration gig that night at Haleiwa Joes. That sounds like a plan.

Hypothetical: Carissa Moore

You get a wildcard into the men’s event of your choosing. Which do you pick? Oh, this is really gnarly...

The latest in surf radio will fill the holes in the side of your head with:
All the news, views and boos from Fiji.
Ain't That Swell's Classic surfing moment.
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Big Wave World Tour

AINT THAT SWELL EPISODE 6

A frank discussion about Surf Mag politics and the Australian Slab Surfer.


Age: 18
Provenance: Sunshine Beach,
Noosa Heads, QLD


Everyone’s got the photo. The one of a younger you with a catastrophic haircut, taken before anything mattered and hairdressers had eyes. It’s the one photo that no matter how cute the puppy is you’re holding, or any accessory for that matter, it doesn’t detract from the monstrosity on top. And they don’t come worse than the bowlcut. It’s the microwavable pizza of haircuts. So incredibly famous for being completely awful that it’s kinda okay. But while you cringe at the old photo of your fur explosion there’s always the sweet, sweet rejoice of knowing it’s all behind you.

But Harry Bryant’s 18 and he still loves microwavable pizza and truth is, we’re all better off for it. See, Harry’s one of those guys who’s found the balance between fun and serious. That’s a rare quality to have during the “do-or-die time for your career” when you’re trying to make it in competitive surfing with all the stretching and hooters and scores and hooters. “I’ve got a side of me that’s really dedicated to a good time with my mates but then there’s a side of me that’s wanting to do well and surf contests,” he says.





Harry’s part of a young crew of creatives on the Sunny Coast who’ve grown up watching Jake Donlan’s Runamuk Visuals take shape, a website showcasing talent from sides of the industries you may not have seen. Having been around for 10 years or so, there’s now this new wave of energy coming from the Sunny Coast. They’re filming, shooting, painting, surfing, skating and they’ve got the mediocre waves of the Sunny Coast to thank. “We’ve just come off the back of a six-month flat spell so yeah, the waves aren’t great. We do a lot of creative stuff that I suppose we don’t realise people call creative. We just get super bored and make things happen.” Whatever the idea – whether it’s playing soccer with raw chickens on his feet or dressing up in his sister’s tights for a tandem surfing exhibition – Harry seems to be the Yes Man with a character reminiscent of times gone by.


“We’ve just come off the back of a six-month flat spell so yeah, the waves aren’t great. We do a lot of creative stuff that I suppose we don’t realise people call creative. We just get super bored and make things happen.”


Harry’s been brought up under a watchful eye because around the corner from his house is the Nicest Guy in Surfing, Dean Brady. Brady’s taken Harry under his Boeing 747 wing and gotten all Mr. Miyagi on him. “When the surf’s good it’s all-time and me Brady always hit it. He’s been a huge influence on my whole life,” says Harry. “He’s always taught me the value of being a genuine nice bloke and that you’d be amazed where it’ll take you.”

Wax on, Harry. Wax on.


By Lucas Townsend

Next… Harry Bryant

Everyone’s got the photo. The one of a younger you with a catastrophic haircut, taken before anything mattered and hairdressers had eyes.


One of my absolute favourite things to make is my famous banana and chocolate cake. It’s a very balanced cake spiritually thanks to the yin of bananas and the yang of cocoa. This is my own personal recipe, perfected over many years of baking these suckers. Disclaimer: This cake is actually only famous in my mind when I’m eating it.


INGREDIENTS
½ a thing of butter
¾ cup of brown sugar
2 cups of self raising flour
2 eggs
1 block of dark chocolate
2 ripe bananas


STEP 1: Put on a cool Guatemalan apron and compliment that with a rainbow headband. I also recommend playing Seasons in the Abyss by Slayer at full volume to give your cake some death metal badassness.

STEP 2: Melt your butter into a bowl and then beat in the brown sugar like Dave Lombardo beats those double kickers in War Ensemble. Melt down your chocolate into that shit as well.

STEP 3: After you’ve worked all that into a fine paste chuck in everything that’s left – the flour, bananas and eggs. Stir that gear up and marvel how something that looks heaps like a bowl of gorilla fingers will be the tastiest thing you’ve ever eaten in less than an hour.

STEP 4: Grease up your cake tin by lining it with butter then pour your gorilla fingers in to about the 1/3 mark. Have your oven on about 180 and slot your cake in on the top shelf. Then start pulling out your hair because you already want to eat your cake but you’re gonna have to wait at least 40 minutes.

STEP 5: Soon as I see the roof of my cake split I wait another 15 minutes then rip that thing out of the oven and shove it straight into my mouth, often suffering internal third degree burns because it’s that bloody molten hot. If you have the patience to let your cake sit for a while, maybe whip up some cream and get your girl to lick it off your nipples to pass the time.

Making Stuff With Ozzie Wrong

One of my absolute favourite things to make is my famous banana and chocolate cake. It’s a very balanced cake spiritually ...


The shortboard shredders who inspire the world’s raddest wave dancer


Californian surfer Alex Knost rides logs, mid-lengths and shortboards with a kind of Bruce Lee-meets-Iggy Pop zing-shred-pow. His influences obviously extend to well beyond the surf world but we figured it’d be interesting to find out which modern day shortboarders get his mojo firing…


Ford Archbold Mushies at Night
Ford surfs for fun and fun only. He despises self promotion and rips way harder than anyone thinks. He draws unique lines and maximises the entire length of his board. I watched him paddle out in the pitch black night at big Log Cabins, and he was really high on mushrooms. No one can give him shit because to him it doesn’t exist. He’s as much Archbold as he is Ford.

Ozzie Modest Revolution
Duh… coolest dude ever. Took moon rocks with him all night, he stayed up, painted six boards with oil pastels at dawn, then paddled out at terrible Newport in California and ripped on a finless soft top. He’s my hero and another modest revolutionary.

Christian Fletcher Not A Dork
Christian’s not a dork, he tells it how it is. If I was him and had done what he’s done I’d be a prick, but he’s punk as can be and if surfers these days were more like him, the surf industry would be a better place, more radical, less self absorbed with internet garbage, less ass kissing. Oh, and he’s a Fletcher, and he skates insane, and surfed 10 years before his time. Love him like a brother.

Gavin Beschen Interior Feelings
The most modest and stylish surfer I know. I’ve seen him pack such heavy backside ones at Off the Wall. He gave Ford a free board and that is so selfless… such Aloha. His patience at Rocky Point last winter impressed me beyond belief. Unique introvert style, he surfs for interior feelings. I love that his gratification stems from that. Also his part in some Volcom movie when he surfs to Sabbath at Sunset Beach is the coolest thing ever. I have a lot of respect for him and have only spoken four words to him ever.

Chris Ward Pleasantly Raw
Surfs all day while everyone’s on Instagram. His tuberiding is unbelievable. He’s a raw talent and every interaction I’ve had with him has been a pleasant one.

Mason Ho Spirit Child
Free spirited free style charger. I love the way he uses his whole board and he seems completely unaware of any sort of consequence in the water. I watched him at low tide rights at Rockpiles and it was so shallow and heavy and he didn’t care at all. Ford turned me onto him that day, he told me to just watch and when I did my head fell off.

Times Six with Alex Knost

Californian surfer Alex Knost rides logs, mid-lengths and shortboards with a kind of Bruce Lee-meets-Iggy Pop zing-shred-pow.

Here's a quick description of what you can expect form this app and a quick short by Hayden O'Neill for a taste of the type of content you will see on there. 

"KIN is you and me, the lovers and creators of art and music, the boarders and the travellers. It’s a community of like minds; a place where you can explore the world of surf, skate, snow, travel, art and music."  Kinapp.com.au


FAST FOOD

A new app that doesn't get over run with photos of food, babies, babies eating food and people eating food with babies in the background eating food.


By Mike Fanning

I was 15 years old and on my first surf trip with my then sponsor Quiksilver. The late, great Andrew Murphy took me down to watch The Rip Curl Pro at Bells. A few days after watching Matt Hoy’s epic win at the Pro the Skins event kicked off and we hung around to watch it.

Occy was ripping in the Pro and made the quarters but he went to a whole different place in firing waves in the Skins. To this day I’ve never seen someone dominate an event like Occy did the Skins. He didn’t have one dud heat. His surfing was so much faster and bigger than anyone else out there and all the top pros were in it, including Kelly. I definitely haven’t seen a backhand as strong at Bells since. Occ’s waves in the Skins would still be getting near-perfect scores in World Tour heats today and it was 17 years ago.

…Occy in the 1997 Skins event at Bells


I think the thing that stood out to me was the transformation I’d seen in Occ. He had moved to the Gold Coast so as a grom I’d watched him go from his lowest point where he was massively overweight and rarely surfed to an ultra psyched ball of muscle, pumped to win events again. I knew he was good but I had no idea what he was really capable of until I saw him in that comp. It was incredible. The Skins itself was a unique event where you only counted one wave in each round and that was all Occy ever needed. He got nines all day and ended up winning $55,000 and a new car.

One wave that stood out to me had this wild foam-climb transition. Occ had this magic 6’5” channel-bottom Dahlberg that seemed to do anything he wanted. He was caught deep on this one wave and probably could have bottom turned around this big section but he just redirected, went vertical and projected a ridiculous distance to make it in front of the wave. He got that board to do some messed up things that day, he also used it the following year to win the Rip Curl Pro at Bells.

I think after that performance in the Skins and the win in 98 Occy really became synonymous with Bells, especially The Bowl. Like Kelly at Cloudbreak or Gerry at Pipe, you couldn’t think about Bells without thinking about Occ.

When he was on Tour if The Bowl was six-foot plus and you drew Occy you knew you were ruined. Even when Andy, who was regarded as one of the best at Bells, came up against Occy in a quarter-final back in 2006 in beautiful waves on The Bowl Occy totally destroyed him.

It’s a big question to be asked: What’s the best surfing you’ve ever seen? I knew my answer almost instantly. I’ve seen plenty of mind-blowing surfing in competition and outside of it. But watching Occy win the Skins from the cliff top on that clear, crisp, offshore day will always be one of the highlights of my life as a surfer.

The best surfing I have ever seen…

I was 15 years old and on my first surf trip with my then sponsor Quiksilver. The late, great Andrew Murphy took me down to watch The Rip Curl Pro at Bells.


The Land Of is an entirely independent production that follows a group of surfers on a journey through Thailand as they gain new perspectives on travel that extend far beyond simply riding waves. From providing clean water (Waves for Water) to helping kids overcome their fear of the ocean (post 2006 tsunami) the surfers show us how small actions can have such a positive impact.


The Land Of - Chapter One

There was one giant wave that devastated Thailand in 2004, since then the waves have been small again but the people aren't the same. They fear the ocean.


The Billabong Pro, Rio - SAMBA! From grovelly waist-high runners to green orbs from the planet zion, to some classic 1980's gamesmanship, the Rio Bong-off had it all. Meanwhile, one week after writing Slater off as a "94 year old grandma" with only days to go in his career, Ain't That Swell is leading the KE12Y bandwagon. And we're coming for the title, baby! YEAH!.

Speaking of which, what is the role of the surfing media exactly? Are we on a crusade for THE TRUTH? Are we here to EXPOSE and hold waxheads to ACCOUNT for their questionable posturings and behaviour? Jed and Vaughan Dead undergo a monday night existential crisis for y'all - live on air! Wooooo!

In lieu of the Arab Spring, Occupy, the Burmese monks vs the military junta and Thailand declaring martial law, the waxhead community has finally got its shit together and taken to the streets. We take a trip through the history of the waxhead protest movement - from the big poo in Coffs Harbour to the Waxheads 4 Change movement and the good fight being fought by former World Tour surfer, turned mixed martial artist, turned mayoral candidate, Dustin Barca, against Monsanto.

Honourable mentions: Forget about surf journalism, let's all just make noises to describe surfing - Zah! Dootz! Bannnng! Bah! Zzzant! - Peter Mel does. Oh, and let's not forget zzzzz…how else would you describe the ASP women's performance in Brazil (Zing!) Al Knost: unbearable hipster douchebag or merely a misunderstood douchebag? Or neither? An interview with jujitsu freak, Rickson Gracie (of Gracie jujitsu fame), which we poached from the ASP (take that Zosea!) And can we please have enough of this convoluted ASP ratings system as well as the endless repechage rounds. You want repechage? Bend over and we'll give you a repechage.

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Anit That Swell Episode 5

The Billabong Pro, Rio - SAMBA! From grovelly waist-high runners to green orbs from the planet zion, to some classic 1980's gamesmanship, the Rio Bong-off had it all...


Dillon Perillo is 24 years old, from Malibu, California. 
This is a brief look into his world by the talent picture box maestro Morgan Maassen. 


PERILLO by MAASSEN

Dillon Perillo is 24 years old, from Malibu, California. This is a brief look into his world by the talent picture box maestro Morgan Maassen.

So the coal seam gas thing is real. It's a real danger and it's time we all start realising it. These companies own big drills. These big drills extracts methane from coal seams underground. But they also extract large volumes of salty water to the surface in the process. Here's one problemo. This water is totally gross and contaminates underground and surface water, wreaking havoc on oceans like a giant idiot washing a gazillion cars on the road and letting all the suds wash down the drain to flow out at your local. Second problemo. These mines require heaps of wells to extract the methane in the coal seams, ultimately butchering perfectly healthy land and ruining the livelihoods of local farmers.

Now, all this is happening on the Northern NSW coast. Some of Australia's best right point breaks are under threat as well as the beautiful land that's come to charactarise the north. When you watch this clip made by Kaius Potter, total shred lord Dave Rastovich will explain with a lot more eloquence and reason and you'll find out about a peaceful protest on May 19 that you should really get involved with. But if you can't, that's cool, but promise us one thing. At very least, you'll have the conversation with a fellow surfer. Ask them whether they're okay with losing one of their favourite right point breaks they surfed that time as a kid. Educate them, stoke them out on getting involved and spread the word.

Coal Seam Gas Threat

The Northern NSW coast is under threat from CSG corporations and as a surfer you need to know about it. Rasta speaks.


The people who’ve adorned Surfing World’s covers over 51 years are each caught in a moment of their lives – almost invariably the peak of their careers, and their physical prime. Appearing in portrait, in a barrel or high above a lip, the image is only ever a moment in a life. How the surfer got there – and where they went next – is a fascinating thing to explore.

Steve Cooney will live forever in surf culture as the 15-year-old kid who caught the first waves ever surfed at Uluwatu in Albe Falzon’s seminal surf film Morning of the Earth (yep, he’s also one of the silhouettes on the cover). A regular on surf trips up and down the coast for SW during the early 70s, Stevo scored his first cover in November 75. He continues to live and shred on Sydney’s Northern Beaches today.


SW: The early 70s must’ve been a whirlwind for you. Do you remember winding up on the cover back in November 75?
SC: I remember it well. Peter Crawford took it. I was on an orange-rail board built by Bill Cilia down at Nirvana on the Central Coast. It was a nice little board, that one. The barrel was at Dee Why Point – it wasn’t a huge day, just average size, but really nice down the inside section. Peter was sitting down there shooting. I was often photographed in the first few years after Morning of the Earth came out in 1972. I think people saw me as a free-surfer in those days, and I guess I was known for my tube riding.

What was going on in your life in those years between Morning of the Earth and the cover shot?
When I went with Albe to Indo in 1971, I was 15. In between that trip and Peter’s cover shot, I’d left school and was sponsored to go surfing. Rip Curl did the wetsuits and Hutchinson’s Surfboards in Brookvale (now Byron Bay) did my boards. Paul Hutchinson in fact supplied me with boards for the trip with Albe. The Morning of the Earth board was one of his – a 5’9” rounded square single fin. I rode it in eight foot Ulus without a legrope. By 18, I was working for Tracks at Whale Beach, selling ads at first and then progressing to be art director for eight years. I did some editorial for them and took a few photos as well.

Where did your career go from there?
I stayed in publishing for many years after that – I did 16 or 17 years as senior art director with Federal Publishing Company. I left publishing about 10 years ago and I’ve worked in the car industry along the Northern Beaches ever since – I’m currently with a Mercedes dealership in Mona Vale. It’s about two minutes from home, so there’s time for a surf before work.

Good to hear you’re still in the water…
Yeah, and I’m pretty much the same kind of surfer I’ve always been. I surf a lot with my two sons; Tim, who lives in Bungan and plays with the Goons of Doom, and Jedd, who’s down at Fairlight. We go on trips together up and down the coast – it’ great.

Do you have a preference for single fins? People must associate you very strongly with a particular kind of surfing, a particular era in board design…
Well, going back, my first board was a cut-down 5’9” balsa my big brother Butch made. The smallest board I ever had was a 4’6” double-ender Shane that Butch also made. He shaped for Shane and for TF at Hot Buttered. I think I‘ve always ridden my boards shorter than what’s current. At the moment I’m riding a 5’8” Ozzy Wright thruster, a Finch 5’10” quad and a Warner 6’4”. A lot of people assume I’d still be somehow stuck on single-fins, frozen in time, but it’s not the case at all.

Do you have much involvement with surfing, are you still involved with the crew at Northy?
Yeah, I’m currently helping the North Narrabeen Boardriders to compile their 50th anniversary book, sourcing materials and helping with layout and production. I’m enjoying life at the moment. As you get older, there’s fewer things that worry you.

– Jock Serong

Catching Up With Steve Cooney

The people who’ve adorned Surfing World’s covers over 51 years are each caught in a moment of their lives – almost invariably the peak of their careers...


If you’re younger than about forty-five, chances are you’ve been raised on the terrifying notion that there’s a hole in the ozone layer above Australia. The barrier between us and the celestial inferno has always been a variety of squeezy tubes full of fragrant goo; the smell of the inside of mum’s beachbag. In chronological order, late twentieth-century beachbags contained: nothing at all, baby oil, Tanfastic, Coppertone, zinc oxide (file under ‘Paul Hogan’ and ‘terry towelling hat’), and Reef Oil (Coconut or Frangipani).

Reef Oil and Waxx-On wax were at opposite ends of the traction spectrum, but their combined use did deliver an overwhelming coconut hit. Then there was Bullfrog, named not for its amphibious qualities but for its tendency to make your eyes bulge in agony when the damn stuff found them. These days there’s no highs and lows: it’s all Guardian Chemists SPF 50+, and lately, a variety of spray-ons. Spray-ons are as boring as deodorants, although entertainingly, the makers of Banana Boat sunscreen recalled their spray-on products after a number of people caught fire after applying them.

The single-digit SPFs were the tanning equivalent of overproof Bundy. You pretty much had to ask for them under the counter. In the period of mid-range SPFs - let’s say from the Carroll and Curren World Titles through to about the rise of Slater - SPFs were all 15s and 8s. Devotees would put the 15 on the face but the 8 on the rack. This was around the time of the sunscreen spray-gun guy on the beach at Cavill Avenue, Surfers Paradise.


There’s an Australian pharmacy chain that will – right now, today, in 2014 - sell you the SPF6 Reef Oil, so you can fry yourself like a dimmy.



You’d think we’ve now entered a sober age of restraint with this sort of behaviour, but it’s a myth. There’s an Australian pharmacy chain that will – right now, today, in 2014 - sell you the SPF6 Reef Oil, so you can fry yourself like a dimmy. But wait: it comes in a gift pack with Vitamin E crème so you can try to repair the damage afterwards. Which is something akin to selling Camel Filters with an oxygen mask.

The US government’s number one expert on this stuff, by the way, is a guy named Reynold Tan. Seriously. Coppertone was invented by the Americans during the second world war. Their billboards featured a little girl being dacked by a black cocker spaniel. Jodie Foster made her acting debut as a three-year-old in a Coppertone ad, the tagline of which read: “Beautiful tan today, young-looking skin tomorrow.” It’s an oxymoron and a blatant lie, but it does have a little more joie de vivre than “Tanning is skin cells in trauma”.

The use of zinc remains most prevalent among cricketers and surfers. Down through the decades, these two cultures have fought an unceasing fashion battle over the stuff, while no-one else buys it at all. Picture Dean Jones with the white bottom lip; Tom Carroll’s careful stripe across the bridge of his nose and cheekbones; Andrew Symons with both whitened lips forming a startled ‘O’ in the slo-mo replay; Mick Fanning completely ghosted-out in the tropics; and Shane Warne trying to be cute with a little button of white on the end of his nose.

Sunscreen could save your life. And lack of variety should never be an excuse for failing to smear the gear. There’s an American website – of course there is – selling bacon-scented sunscreen.

By Jock Serong

A Short History of… Sunscreen

If you’re younger than about forty-five, chances are you’ve been raised on the terrifying notion that there’s a hole in the ozone layer above Australia.

Did you even know Irish big wave hell man Fergal Smith had a new internet show? Neither did I but on this episode, he learns to whittle a new wooden spoon, followed of course by his world-class slab surfing. Do you even know Irish big wave hell man Fergal Smith? If the answer is no, educate yourself by clicking through to these Irish beasts and afterwards you'll feel like you know him like an old friend, that old friend you have with big wave cold water lunatic tendencies.  

GROWING SPOONS

Did you even know Irish big wave hell man Fergal Smith had a new internet show? Neither did I but on this episode, he learns to whittle a new wooden spoon, followed of course by some world-class slab surfing.


This is the breakdown of the latest episode from Aint That Swell founder and host Mr Jed Smith: 

"Ain't That Swell also plunges deep into the freezing conjecture and robotic posturings of Mick Fanning's win at the Rip Curl Pro, Bells Beach. He is undoubtedly a master of the competitive format but is he, as they say, 'boring as bat shit?'

And what about how rattled Kelly Slater looked (and sounded) after his quarterfinal loss to John John Florence? Does the fire still burn strong in the alkaline intestinal tract of surfing's number one raw food advocate?

The 'Brazilian Storm' is preparing to rain black beans and air reverses on the world tour at the Billabong Pro, Rio, later this week. Can current world number one, Gabz Medina break the country's world title winning hoodoo? And how did they manage to skip, like, a 15 year evolutionary stage in surfing anyway? Feels like only yesterday Neco Padaratz was lighting up the WCT doldrums with his steroidal power hacks. Now they're way up in the skies. What gives?

“We are especially looking forward to the possibilities of what Surfing and StandUp Paddling can bring to our citizens in terms of good health and all around stoke and happiness. While our country might be better known for our warm culture and rich food, we have a variety of reef and beach breaks that make Surfing and StandUp Paddling possible to practice year round and to help develop world-class competitors," - that comes from Ali Elamine, the president of the Lebanese Surfing Association, on their recent admission to the International Surfing Association (ISA). We welcome our Lebanese brothers into the fold. Well may they look forward to all round stoke, and we a steady stream of world-class surfers and SUP'ers from this formerly war-torn breeding ground of terrorists. 

Honorable mentions: The forlorn tale of Umina's favourite Irishman, Glen 'Micro' Hall, who makes his return to the Rio Pro as a wildcard. Child Surf Stars: How young is too young and why is Mick Fanning so off 'em? The XXL pre-teen qwerty nipple awards; the release of the epic Cloudbreak cinema-spectacular, Thundercloud; and news of the latest plague to hit Bali. First rabies, second greedy developers, and most recently the ghastly horror of Russian and Scandinavian surf schools. What could be next for our favourite Hindu paradise?"

aint that swell episode 4

Are you ready for another injection of surf radio speed ball? Come on in and enjoy the sonic critical analysis of Fanning, Kelly, the Brazilians and much much more.


Factual Blunder

Dear SW,
 
I just read Sean Doherty’s piece on the WA Shark Cull in SW 348. A bit city-centric perhaps?
 
While SD treads the well-worn path of spruiking crisis to sell copy, a plausible alternative to the spike in fatal shark attacks in WA is that White Pointers are living longer due to more food and less nets in their environment and as they age, as nature prescribes, they get fatter and slower and they hunt slower and easier prey.  
 
Please give me the opportunity to explain;
 
SD draws a long bow by suggesting that canning Southern Bluefin Tuna from the Great Australian Bight could be part of a cascading eco-system effect that is putting surfers on the White Pointer menu in WA.
 
Firstly, there is a glaring factual blunder that makes SD’s subtle premise somewhat flawed, i.e., it’s been a long time since Southern Bluefin Tuna has been canned for human consumption. In fact, there is not a commercial tuna cannery currently operating in Australia and the majority of the Australian SBT catch is exported for the sashimi trade in Japan (and has been for at least 25 years). I would say that the tuna SD’s mate was spraying him with over lunch comes from the Western or Central Pacific Tuna Fisheries and it would be very hard to establish a link between the issues in this fishery and human fatalities associated with shark attacks in WA.
 
Secondly, while the green lobby (and SD as it would seem) would have Joe Public believe that our ocean habitats are in crisis (and in some places they are – no doubt), it’s my experience that Australia’s Southern Ocean habitat that supports the White Pointer population in question, is in the best shape its been since Whaling was banned in 1979 and the first colonials were stopped from making a fist of the fur seal trade some time earlier.
 
Check out the data on the increasing trend in Sea Lion pup production at Dangerous Reef in the Southern Spencer Gulf, the health of Fur Seal colonies dotting the southern Australian coastline and the increasing numbers of Southern Right Whales during the calving season at the Head of the Bight. It describes a picture of an ecosystem capable of supporting large and increasing populations of marine dependant species. A picture of health and viability. A White Pointer version of All You Can Eat.  A picture rarely portrayed in the media.
 
Couple the abovementioned with decreasing commercial fishing effort in southern Australia (for a sustained period of time) and you realistically have increasing and abundant sources of food (seal pups and whale veal) for top level predators with reduced and reducing adverse population risks from human related activities such as fishing.
 
I can’t remember the last time I heard of a White Pointer that was sited during an attack that was any smaller than say a “Combi-Van” or a “Submarine”, which lends weight to the alternative that White Pointers involved in attacks on humans are from the ageing demographic in their population. Check out the story of the abalone diver fatally attacked west of Port Lincoln (FEB 2011) – the boat driver reported two pointers involved exceeding 15 foot in length. If numbers in this demographic (the senior citizen White Pointer demographic that is) are increasing due to environmental factors in their favour then the recent spike in attacks could plausibly become the new baseline of an increasing trend.
 
Food for Thought. – Christian Pyke


Constable Carrot 

Dear SW,

The recent talk ignited by Kelly’s comments about the intolerable crowds at surf breaks across Australia (particularly on the GC), appears to have struck a chord with some short tempered punters. It isn’t surprising how the abuse scrawled on Kelly’s car in response to his opinion on one of the Goldie’s more packed and localised line ups, appears to be a reaction from indeed a local source. One could safely assume this to be the case as surely, a tourist trying to score a wave at the Super Bank where snakes and drop-ins seem to be ‘just what they do around here,’ would not react in such a defensive and intolerant manner.

Sadly, from the perspective of a surfer who frequents the Gold Coast’s points, this kind of ignorant and dangerous approach to the Sport of Kings, is all too prevalent. Or at least some individuals, those who are the most deluded by their own ego and belief system around how breaks should exist, are certainly making it seem like it is as rife - as bullying is in schools.

I have witnessed and been on the receiving end of a handful of incidents on the points of late. Most confrontations arise from minor spats between two guys, where one has intentionally or otherwise violated etiquette. This has resulted in a few insults being thrown and matters largely being resolved quickly, if not (somewhat) gentlemanly. Unfortunately, there have been occasions when supremely and needlessly aggressive conduct has occurred, which has gone far beyond what would be considered as typically macho or acceptable. Rather, most would consider it to be nothing more than utterly gutless, hypocritical and flat out unlawful behaviour.

Allow me to explain. Upon reading a recent issue of your fine publication, I was blown away to turn the page over and be confronted with a man who has poisoned the point break that I and so many other sub-locals, love so dearly. It was mystifying to read about his deep insights into topics ranging from riding waves, to education. To detect intelligence and reflection in his words has somehow only increased my utter confusion around how a person could understand seemingly so much, yet so very little.
I have surfed The Point for over 5 years. Beginning at the bottom of the pecking order, I gradually found myself in more critical and fun positions in the line-up as my skills and status increased. Over the past 2 years, I have watched as this upstanding and self-appointed policeman of the break has continued to out-do himself and violate the basic essence of surfing. Ironically, it is the essence which according to the article in your April issue; he appears to have such a connection with. I have witnessed this quintessential local howl at other surfers who have gotten in his way as they scramble to paddle out through the white water. Many have seen him drop in on countless board riders, only to threaten their lives (and their teeth) when his understanding of surf etiquette is rightly called into question. I’ve had the privilege of copping both examples of such pathetic behaviour at the hands of this pig. Both experiences were made that much more infuriating by fact that his size and skill level were used to exploit the situation.

Perhaps most disturbing though, was one incident in particular involving the man in question, and a boy of no more than 10 years old. To give the event some context, The Point on that mellow day was a playful 2 foot, and there were all of 8 surfers in the water. Constable Carrot was in his usual grumbly mood, raiding more than his fair share of waves. Meanwhile, two young lads were further down the point trying to grab a couple, when our admirable policeman took off on a sucky little runner way up the point. In error, one of the boys took off on the same wave much further down the line, no doubt judging that the old bloke would not make the racy little section in front of him. Well, what a way for a man to enforce some respect in his fellow surfers (and in a child). He screamed for the boy to fuck off etcetera, which the boy promptly did by kicking out immediately. I had a front row seat to the action and was horrified to watch the boy’s face turn from shock to terror, as the Constable stroked closely back past him and proceeded to tear in. Many an adjective paired with the C-bomb were used, effectively ripping the joy of wave riding right out of the poor lad for the foreseeable future. I could do nothing but throw a few supporting words at the boy as he cowered in the line-up. A more cowardly act in or out of the water, is seldom encountered.
Sadly, mates of mine have recounted similar incidents on the point, where girls of a similar age have been callously dropped in on and intimidated by the Constable, despite waiting intolerable amounts of time to catch the scraps on tiny sunny days.       

It is an attractive thought that intolerance, ignorance and cowardice at surf breaks around the country are a set of symptoms linked to a one dimensional issue. If this was the case, it would no doubt make tackling the problem a much easier prospect. Rather, it surely stems from a plethora of misguided beliefs and misdirected behaviours on land, which then bleed into the water.  In both settings the same destructive consequences for the community as a whole can be observed. But regardless of the multifaceted causes of these dangerous attitudes, an equally resilient and unified counter-attitude is sorely needed in response to those who are polluting our beloved subculture with hate. And it is just that. Cut the hate. What good, what lessons, what growth, what joy – all synonymous with the fabric of surfing- can come from fostering hate. At the risk of sounding too philosophical, we can all agree that hate is in direct conflict with everything surfing stands for. It is so insidious though that it often masquerades as masculinity, or a show of strength. Of course, we know how it is almost always a sign of fear or concealed weakness.

As surfers, we are a predominantly peaceful, insightful and indeed strong people. We need to recognise hateful attitudes and behaviour for what they are, and what they do. And let’s not fool ourselves here. What hate unquestionably does is damage the hater, the target, the line up and the culture in general. Any of these effects alone are inexcusable, but together, it reaches a point where we as a community are forced to act. That action must be in the form of zero tolerance of anyone fracturing the beautiful landscape that is surfing in Australia, through their intimidation and short sightedness. Quite simply, I believe a call to arms is desperately needed.

It is my hope that even if some edited version of this letter does not find its way onto the pages of a future issue of Surfing World, than at least some people at your magazine will read it and feel motivated to do something. Perhaps to use their say and influence in the surfing community, regardless of what medium they may choose, to promote a tougher approach to hate in the water. Maybe they can continue the fight to change surfers’ responses to unacceptable human beings in the surf, no matter if the surfers themselves charge, or hold the title of kook! The experience of riding waves deserves to be preserved as a raw, primal and spiritual act. We all need to step up and not accept the classic thinking of “Ah ,that’s just Constable Carrot blowing of some steam.” – CB

RE: SURFING WORLD

Your letters to the editor in full version from the pages of Surfing World. Got an issue? letters@surfingworld.com.au

Someplace Else is a collective of free wheelin’ fun lovin’ and talented individuals - surfers Ozzie Wright and Dylan Graves, musician Hanni El Khatib, skateboarder Andrew Brophy and artists Jeff Canham and Rose Ashton – pulled together by Corona Extra for a bus trip down the forgotten back roads of the Mexican coast. The mission was to find the common threads that bind creative souls and surprise, surprise… it’s free beer! And what brings people together better than free beer? The film drops on May 12. Stay tuned amigos...

Corona Extra Presents Someplace Else - Trailer from Corona Extra on Vimeo.

THE SOMEPLACE ELSE TRAILER

It’s not here. It’s not there. It’s not even in between. It’s Someplace Else trailer directed by Riley Blakeway for Corona Extra.


I’m not going back to Bali this year. That’s it. Done. Selasai.

In saying that, I’ll probably still go, and will be tearing up the Sky Garden dancefloor at three in the morning first night upon my return. But last year as I sat in my second hour of traffic on Jalan Sunset with the Jalan Raya Kerobokan bottleneck still to come, I had plenty of time to ponder how little I was enjoying my annual hang out in Bali.

I didn’t want to be that guy. The guy who comes back from Bali and whines about traffic and plastic and crowds and the cost of his beer at Potato Head and how Bali isn’t like it was way back in 2009. That guy has now replaced the cultural flathead in the Bintang singlet trawling the backblocks of Kuta as the lowest form of tourist life on the island. But the pace of change is only accelerating and I’m picturing Bali in a decades time and not overly optimistic about what’s going to confront me.

It’s not the surf. The infinite quality of the surf in Bali hasn’t changed. There’s always somewhere new to surf and a new swell to surf it on. As far as waves go, Bali is a gift that keeps on giving and no matter how many gormless kooks drift out into the line-up, there’s always somewhere to escape them if you know your shit. I’ll see your three-foot Uluwatu with a hundred guys out and raise you five-foot Nyang Nyang with a couple of cows for company. The spirit of the island also seems pretty much indefatigable. Mate, if it can survive four decades of Australian tourism it can survive pretty much anything. If you’re staying in the right places it still looks like Bali and it still feels like Bali.


I’ll see your three-foot Uluwatu with a hundred guys out and raise you five-foot Nyang Nyang with a couple of cows for company. The spirit of the island also seems pretty much indefatigable.



But it’s the island itself that no longer seems infinite. The island of Bali actually seems to be shrinking with people and resources flooding in, a dense bintang collapsing in on itself. There are bad decisions being made daily in Bali, big decisions with repercussions far worse than my decision to party at Sky Garden. I remember back when they razed the pristine cliffs at Dreamland just on five years ago to make way for the new resort. I remember looking back down the Bukit from Padang and seeing the white cliffs being scored by bulldozers and thinking this was a sobering glance into the island’s future. Last year I took the kids down to Dreamland and was horrified by what I found. The white elephant resort was no longer white; it was rust-stained, dilapidated, abandoned. After only five years Dreamland looked more like Dresden. The worry is that boom and bust don’t run in cycles in Bali, they run hand in hand, and for every dead or dying resort, another 10 future dead or dying resorts are being built, and the island is no longer big enough to just soak it up and remain beautiful forever.

And you’ve all seen the photos of Kuta Beach doubling as an aquatic tip. A place where plastic bottles go to live forever. Local surfers are trying their best to rally and do something about it, but they’re fighting a losing battle. There’s a growing awareness amongst the Balinese that something needs to be done if they’re going to keep the essence of their island pure, but they’re up against a tsunami of development rupiah and have their work cut out for them.

Just as the island of Bali once seemed limitless, the rest of the archipelago now calls. Bali is one island, and there are a few more scattered throughout Indonesia with surf, apparently. So if Bali really is as inconvenient and overrun as you’re making out, you’ve got a few options. You can embrace it and join me at Sky Garden, or you can go somewhere else. It’s time to call your own bluff, and I’d be happy for the Balinese to start rocking a bumper sticker directed at whining Australian tourists that says something like, “Bali… if you don’t like it, leave.”

Image: Childs

Sean Doherty On... Brushing Bali

I’m not going back to Bali this year. That’s it. Done. Selasai. In saying that, I’ll probably still go, and will be tearing up the Sky Garden dancefloor ...

Dave Jackman was most famous for taking on the infamous Queenscliff Bombora in 1961. The feat was published in Sydney newspapers the following day and revered in surfing history as one of the first instances of big wave surfing in Australia – prompting a strong lineage of Australian big wave legends. His nephew wrote in the Sadhana Surfboards obit paying tribute to Jackman as a renowned waterman: ”Names like Clark-Jones, Hendy, Mitchell, Hutchings, Ferguson and Rastovich all owe a debt of gratitude to Dave and his peers. In fact anyone who walked into the tide wanting to ride some­thing a bit bigger, paddle a little longer or swim a little further owes Dave a nod."

Jackman is often credited as being the first to surf the Bommie, but Jackman himself wrote in The Australian Surfrider(1963) that it was previously ridden by Claude West: “Newspaper reports made me appear as the first surfer to ride that Queenscliff Bombora. I made no such claim. Claude West, to name only one, had cracked it before I was born. I used the short board, which made it easier for me. The difference was that I paddled my board out, while Claude says he made his approach from a surfboat. All credit to Claude West as he lacked the highly manageable 'plank' of today."

According to The Encyclopedia of Surfing, “Jackman rode two waves successfully, was pummeled on his third, swam in to recover his board, paddled back out, and rode a final wave to the beach.” News of the feat was heard across the Pacific, where Jackman would become the first Australian to feature in the much-revered Surfer Magazine.

Read the full story on Coastalwatch


Dave Jackman, Dies Aged 74

Legendary Australian big wave surfer, Dave Jackman, has died at age 74. The surfing icon passed on the morning of Saturday May 3, 2014.


As a young kid, Marco Jay Luciano Occhilupo lost count of the number of times people told him, “Wogs don’t surf, mate!” Well, as it turns out, that particular wog surfed pretty good, so good he became the best surfer in the world. Now, to be fair, Occ’s Italian surfing bloodline was more Cronulla than Rome, and growing up as a surfer in Italy comes with a few challenges, least of which being shit surf. But 17-year-old Roman, Leo Fioravanti is giving hope to all Italian surf fans… his family, basically.

“Growing up my brother drove this little Mini car and I’d go with him surfing. The full Italian road trip.” They surfed a wave 20km out of Rome called Banzai, somewhat less frightening than the North Shore equivalent but enough to get the kid hooked on surfing. At age nine Leo went to France and surfed Hossegor, and he’s hardly been home since. He’s lived in France, California and Australia, speaks five languages, and as far as he knows is Italy’s only pro surfer. “There are a couple of other guys who surf pretty good but I think I’m it.”


“I got my big board and paddled out as the swell was picking up, and I’m just thinking okay, first day in Hawaii, one big bomb.”



I first met Leo at G-Land when he was 11, the spindly kid paddling out at Money Trees on big days. “It felt like 12,000 feet,” he recalls, “I loved it though.” The kid has always charged, and this Hawaiian winter just past, straight off the plane, Leo took the heaviest wipeout of the season at the real Banzai. “I got my big board and paddled out as the swell was picking up, and I’m just thinking okay, first day in Hawaii, one big bomb.” He got his bomb all right, falling from the lip of a 10-footer at Backdoor. “Full slow motion – hoooo – just jumped, threw my board, hit the bottom, back up and hit the bottom again. Fully lit up. Fully smashed.”

Image: Bosko

Next... Leo Fioravanti

As a young kid, Marco Jay Luciano Occhilupo lost count of the number of times people told him, “Wogs don’t surf, mate!”

This short is put together by Morgan Maassen, a man better known for his still frames but equally skilled in taste when it comes to his motion work. For those not in the know and in dcesperate need of catching up see his life's work here.


Kelly from Morgan Maassen on Vimeo.

KELLY TALKING LIFE

As skilled with the tongue as he is with the 6ft pointy white bananas, when Kelly talks about his unique and privileged life it's worth a little ear time.

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