Listen: "The Drop," Episode 4: Christian Fletcher
"There was nothing like eating psychedelics and surfing. Growing up [in Hawaii] you could go pick mushrooms... smoke a joint, then go surf Pipeline until your board's destroyed. It was all sorts of fun.”
On this episode of The Drop, Shane and Noodles sit down with Christian Fletcher, eldest son of the famed Fletcher-Hoffman bloodline, progressive surfing's cross-bearing pater familias, and often misunderstood free radical.
While Shane and Noodle's have kept the focus firmly on professional surfing with their first few guests, we think you'll enjoy the sprawling subject matter the boys cover with Christian, everything from the pleasures of psychedelics and surfing, hurt feelings over the famous Surfer letter that called the magazine out for pushing the "kid who spent his whole summer at Trestles" (see below), as well as the formal invitation he's extended to Kelly Slater, to settle their differences like gentleman: getting in the ring for a proper brawl at OM Tenore's remarkable RVCA facility.
As Christian says pretty early on, "There's people who are pretty strange. But to me, I'm pretty normal. People who say [that he's strange], have some preconceived notions, and certainly don't know me. 'Cause I'm a Libra, the well-balanced, mellow type."
Click play below and settle in for one of the best conversations we've heard a few surfers have in ages.
Jeff Booth mailed this to SURFER in 1990," remembers Matt Warshaw, "Complaining about the "guy who spent his summer at Trestles"--Christian--getting "the cover and center spread . . . at the expense of high-ranked professionals." Booth went on to cite pro tennis as the example to which surfing should follow, and requested that the magazines "use a system of coverage based on [competition] performance."
I was managing editor at SURFER back then. Easiest decision of the month was to put Booth's letter at the front of the Post column, at which point I sat back and waited for SURFER readers to slaughter him. Which they did.
Christian Fletcher, at that moment, was a rebel with a very good cause indeed."