A Weekly Wrap: Kelly's (Kinda) Back, Sunny Keeps Fighting, And Teahupo'o Gets Big
A completely unoriginal, revived idea to inform you of all you missed.
Since resigning from my illustrious career as a full-time serf jernalist, I've realised the difficulties in staying up to date with my favourite and most frustrating hobby: surfing. Reading sites like this every day is unrealistic, the Instagram scroll barely treads beyond the shallows, and at the week's end, like many of you out there, I find myself srolling through the previous days posts to see if I've missed anything of particular interest.
Thankfully, due to no work of my own, I've discovered a solution: a weekly wrap!
My old favourite, Danny Jonhson's 'Weak Wrap' is dead and gone, and now I'm going to try and fill the surf-knowledge void with a one-article recap of the week passed. It'll be a weekly installment, because Morgan Williamson our Senior-Ed told me he'd castrate me if I lapsed, so from now on, stroll to stabmag.com every Sunday for a brief re-cap of the week's highlights.
Alright, now that pathetic abstract is over, let's get to the meat; or more accurately, the old and repurposed news.
We wouldn't say 'he's never looked better', but he's still surfing damn well.
Kelly Slater is kinda bloody back! He started the year off with a rejuvenated 33rd (read: dirty turd), rolled into a semi-pumping Bells to nab a quarterfinal finish, and just yesterday, beat the world's best HP surfer, Filipe Toledo, with a brutish display of heat knowledge, tube braille, and veteran rail work. He may have been knocked by a bottle-blonde known as Kanoa Igarashi in the semis, but King Kelly has wrestled back into the top-10 and might just stay there if his favourite venues—J-bay, Teahupo'o, and Pipe—provide an appropriate canvas in the coming months.
Speaking of Teahupo'o, it was cooking a couple days ago. Not the sort of pumping where any of us – you know, normal, largely incapable surfers – would actually want to surf it, but it did make for pleasant viewing, and a few wave of the year entries such as Matahi Drollet's below. It wasn't Code Red, but it was teetering on the pleasant edge of paddleable and tow-worthy that often results in Teahupo'o at its best.
Michael Ciaramella apologised to Carissa Moore. After 'Riss lost her heat despite throwing a no-pick reverse, our young and outspoken writer, Mike Ciaramella critiqued her spin by comparing it to those flatter rotations of the 90's. Carissa hit back. And with some accompanying videos showing her dominance of the nose-pick (within women's surfing at least), Mike was forced to apologise and also admit that he's never done a turn as stylish in his own Joyride board review videos.
Sunny Garcia is still fighting for his life. After his near-death incident over a week ago, fake news surrounding Sunny's condition has been incessant. Several people on social media have falsely claimed the 2000 World Champion had passed, which quickly snowballed throughout the surfing community, while other rumours abound as to his exact condition. A few days ago, Sunny's daughter Kaila took to Instagram updating us and the rest of the world on her Dad's condition as his fights for his life in an Oregon hospital. Stay strong Sunny!
Stab High is coming up pretty soon. You probably haven't missed the news on this, but in case you have, here's a friendly reminder that our sophomore surfing event, held mostly in the air, is scheduled for Waco, Texas on June 29th. There's a building list of competitors here, and you can also buy tickets!
Craig Anderson's film is premiering in Sydney again... with a talk from Jack McCoy. On Saturday, June 1, Craig Anderson's new flick, 'The Quieter You Are The More You Can Hear' is being screened at the Sydney Opera House. The film is being shown in conjunction with a series of talks Jack McCoy is doing for Vivid, and to promote these talks, we had a chat with Jack about most things surf film, which you can read by clicking these words.
Joske takes his opposition to the top.
Heath Joske went face-to-face with Equinor's CEO. Equinor's proposal to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight is tracking along gradually and Heath Joske, a public critic of the proposal, has gone face-to-face with the company's CEO in Oslo, Norway. Read our interview with Joske on the issue here.
The Vans Duct Tape Fest happened in Portugal. And Morgan Williamson got to go! Other than that, it looked very fun, and if you like things that don't have three fins and standardised competitive formats, then you might like a recap of the events. If you're sick of reading, I recommend this article, which has pretty pictures replacing words.
Some other mostly minor events reported online. Julian Wilson released a good video; Clay Marzo released one which warranted a 'Stab Loves'; Rory Parker debated Mike Ciaramella about whether you should marry a surfer – although I'd rather a how-to on talking to girls first; China did something questionable and 60 minutes covered it (what a pity the US doesn't cover its own atrocities in this depth); the Momentum Generation film won a semi Emmy; American Airlines chopped their board freight fees then proceeded to absolutely smoke a longboard; Mason Ho attempted death by rock surfing; and Laird Hamilton went on Joe Rogan, but lord knows I ain't watching that.
And more importantly, here's what's happened in the past few weeks of my ever-exciting life: My car broke down so I'm now surf-abstinent, my loss of hair foreshadowed my loss of girlfriend, and I've resorted to substance and social media abuse to distract myself from the banality of single life. On the positive side, Labor lost the federal election, giving me something to complain about for the next three years. So, all in all, a standard week in the life of 20-something year old who exists in the inner-city political bubble of Sydney's west side.
If someone sends me some screenshots of good comments on this site (hit [email protected], or find me at the Erko) we may even consider rebooting comments of the week.
Until then, arrivederci!