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The New Normal: Conner Coffin On Pasta And Puzzles

Conner Coffin hasn't spent much extended time at home over the last decade. There's always a contest here or a video shoot there pulling him in some direction. But now, locked down in Santa Barbara for the past six weeks, he's settling into the domestic life quite nicely. 

Pasta dinners with his parents, Netflix binge sessions with his ladyfriend, and extended Allman Brothers jams—life is good in the bucolic quarantine zone. Just don't get him started on a jigsaw puzzle...

Stab: Where will you be riding out the germ apocalypse?
Conner Coffin: I’m just at home to Santa Barbara. I’ve been home for, uh, jeez, I don’t even know, so long that I can’t remember how long I’ve been home for. I went to Hawaii for the Volcom Pipe Pro, and I went to Australia and stayed with Mick for seven days and surfed down there. It was super fun. I’ve pretty much been home since then, which would be like February 12th. 

This is probably the longest single stretch of time I’ve spent at home—or I mean it certainly will be by the longest time when this thing all plays out—since I was 16 or something. That’s crazy. 

Who are you quarantining with and are you sick of them yet?
My girlfriend’s been over here and we spend a lot of time hanging out. Then I’ve been hanging out with my parents. They live just a couple of minutes away. So, I’ve been spending quite a bit of time with them. They’ve been taking it super safe as well. So, yeah, we’ve been having dinner and hanging out a little bit. We’ve all been trying to take the social distancing pretty seriously. If we all do our part and play it smart life can get back to normal. 

What's your screen time running these days? 
Oh, shit. It’s pretty high, I think. I feel like I use my phone for a lot of shit and I get bored. I’ve been reading the news a lot and watching what the economy’s doing. Then you go on Instagram. I’ll use it for looking up guitar tabs and other forms of entertainment, podcasts, music. All in all, I don’t think I’m doing terribly. I don’t know, it’s probably three hours or something. 

When not using a device, what have you been doing to keep your mind occupied? 
I started this 1,000-piece puzzle of the starry night a couple of days ago. It’s been a borderline mistake because there’s this weird gene in my family that we call tunnel vision where you start focusing on something and you can’t really stop. So yeah, I’ve been spending a lot of time on this puzzle. I’m sitting in front of it right now.

And I’ve been playing a ton of music, quite a lot of guitar. It’s a really nice way to pass the time. I’ve been cooking a ton. I’ve been trying out some new recipes and trying to eat really well. 

What else? Shit, just kind of working and organizing around the house. I’ve been trying to get some exercise, get out and go for beach walks and um, right. I’ve been doing a lot of reading and watching some shows. I’m not really a show person, but my girlfriend likes them. 


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Status report from the Coffin household.


What was the last show you watched?
We watched we binge-watched “Sex Education.” That was pretty hilarious.

What are your three most essential apocalypse food requirements? 
I'm pretty fortunate, my roommate is a really good fisherman. Our freezer is pretty stocked up a bunch of halibut and sea bass. And I can’t go without pasta, so like stocked up. I grabbed a bunch of good pasta from the store before this all went down. I made a big batch of homemade marinara sauce, so that's been super nice. I also signed up for Butcher Box awhile back, so I have a bunch of frozen grass-fed beef. I was kind of like oddly semi-prepared for this thing. I didn’t have to buy a whole lot. 

What about three inedible possessions you couldn’t quarantine without?
My guitar. A reading device like a Kindle. And I was going to say I bought a big bottle of tequila, but that’s edible.

I like where your head’s at. 
I guess a surfboard. I think that’s fair.

If you could be quarantined anywhere in the world, where would it be?
It’d probably be on Tavarua. That’d be sick to be posted up there. 

Who’s the last person you’d want to be quarantined with? 
Wow, I don’t even know. That’s a pretty brutal question. I don't really know, I can’t even think of anyone. I’m going to pass on that one.

Do you know anybody that has had Covid-19? 
I don't think so, not personally. Someone told me Josh Kerr thought he had it. Then one of my good buddies actually thinks he maybe had caught it, but it was earlier in all this, I think it was in February, so I don’t know. I don’t know anyone who has gotten tested and was like, yeah, I got it. 

My grandparents live down in Pasadena. They got sick a few weeks ago and we were tripping because they’re in their eighties. It was before you could really just go get tested. They were talking to their doctor over the phone and now they’ve gotten better over time. That’s been a relief. It could have been it, but maybe it wasn’t, you know, we probably won't even really ever know.  

Where’s the first place you're gonna go when this thing’s over?
I guess it will be determined by the schedule with the WSL. I’d love to go on a trip somewhere. Those points in Mexico would be sick. It’s going to be crazy to see like how it all shakes out and what happens the next few months. I guess I’ll kind of just play it by ear. There’s so much unknown at this time. 

Any final thoughts on these strange and chaotic times? 
A few things…it’s pretty crazy to see how like different people have reacted to this. Some people are responding and doing the right thing with social distancing. Others are overreacting and freaking out. Then there’s those spring break kids. It’s just wild to see, it really brings out the true colors of people. I’ve got some really good friends in Italy. We’ve been in touch since the beginning and it's like, holy shit! They’re telling me, dude, take it seriously. They gave me a bit of an insight into what was coming our way. 

But you know, as bad of as a situation as we’re in, I think there’s some positives to come out of it. In America, people could slow down and enjoy the things we’ve overlooked. It’s the small things in life. A lot of people are spending a lot more time with their families, taking a lot more time just to chill and reflect and not be constantly on the go. I think, as Americans, we’ve been raised to be like, go, go, go, go, go, go, go! We could all pump the breaks a little, I think that’s another positive. 

And I'd like to figure out how to help people in my community as well. We're all impacted by this, but there are some people who are really hit hard, for example, that depend on schools to feed their kids during the day while they're at work...if they're even working anymore. So many businesses and jobs are just gone. So, I'm looking around and trying to figure out what the best way is to help people in this area that have been hit really hard by the economic and day-to-day realities of our situation. That's something else that I'm going to be working on.

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