“One For Marcio” – Albee Layer’s Tribute To Mad Dog
Imagine treating 30ft Jaws like Backdoor.
Albee Layer occasionally washes off his war paint and reveals a warm and soft innard.
He made the following heartfelt comment about the recent passing of Marcio ‘Mad Dog’ Friere:
“At this point I’ve seen a lot in surfing, too many historic moments to count really. But there are a few that changed how I think about surfing and what’s possible. One of those moments was around 2009 back when we thought Jaws was a ‘tow wave’. It was Valentine’s Day and crowded with lots of questionable surfers – because anyone can get whipped into a big wave. I was thinking how this needs to change and as I thought that I saw this stocky Brazilian paddling a 10 foot board in the channel with no vest on. Pretty sure the papaya board? Then he went over to the left in the middle of all the jet ski mayhem and paddled a couple absolute bombs. He changed everything I thought was possible in surfing in an instant.”
Being introverted, I have a certain admiration for people who will openly express differences, particularly when there is little to be gained. It’s no secret that Albee’s trigger-happiness to call out BS where he sees it has found him on the wrong side of surf politicking, despite it often being genuinely thoughtful.
‘Just smile and wave’ advised the most senior Penguin in Madagascar to his peers attempting to avoid blowing up their escape plans from New York zoo. Most media-trained surfers swallowed some version of that guidance as it relates to blowing up contract opportunities, and it makes them predictably boring interviews.
A learning in my two-year tenure at Stab has been: Don’t bother looking for cookies in tubs of vanilla.
With Albee you expect fireworks, and I like that. As someone who’s undeniably pushed the boundaries of aerial and paddle-in surfing, doesn’t he have a right to play umpire? His irreverence for respecting cultural norms in surfing is fucking comical. Who TF turns down an invite to the Eddie? Albee does. Why? Because Jaws gets good on the same swells as Waimea, and Jaws is objectively a better big wave.
“Unless [The Eddie] becomes really important to me, I don’t think I should be doing it, because of how important it is to so many other people,” Albee explained in the 2017 film Nervous Laughter. “It’s stupid to do something that your heart’s not in just because everyone else wants you to do it.”
He’ll likely never cop an invite again and he’s fine with that. That’s called making your bed and sleeping in it.
Anyways, I digress. This edit, his edit, from TakeShelterProductions, is incredible. Paddling Jaws ain’t pointing your rhino chaser to land and outrunning the wash anymore. It’s knifing drops on 10ft boards and bouncing through monster foamballs – and he’s spearheaded this approach.
Special mention to Stab Highway survivor and SEOTY entrant, Kai Paula too for having a proper crack in his first session out there.
Taylor Paul, texted Albee to see what his plans are for Sunday, when the Eddie will run.
“Is Jaws going to be good during The Eddie?” he asked.
“No,” he wrote. “It’s gonna suck. Tell everyone.”
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