Stab Magazine | A Stoned Man’s Quest To Understand “professional” Surfing

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A Stoned Man’s Quest To Understand “professional” Surfing

Observations from a QS 1500 webcast.

style // Mar 30, 2019
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Do you want to become a professional surfer?

Good news. You can. All you have to do is enter one WQS and the WSL will take make it so that a quick Google search will guide people to a page that reads: Your Name: Professional Surfer.

It’s true. Try it. Google any name on this from Round 1 at the recent Jack’s Surfboards Pro in Huntington Beach, California. You might need to add the word “surfer” to the end of their name — no telling how many Bjorn Hazelquists there are out there. Gotta make it clear you’re looking for the right one.  

Speaking of Round 1 at the recent Jack’s Surfboards Pro in Huntington Beach, California, I, along with 743 other views worldwide, spent last Friday watching it. It was the nighttime for me — there were waves the next day and I wanted to keep it mellow.

So I got stoned, which according to Joel Tudor makes me an artist. I also had some wine, which according to Joel Tudor makes me insecure — as you will find seeping through the words below.

So many check turns

Didn’t know what a check turn was before I started and I don’t know now. But there was a moment in my haze in which I knew exactly what a check turn was. I could feel it. It was real.

Dave Stansfield not being able to pronounce Italo Ferriera

Like many other QS warriors, Dave Stansfield is still here, grinding away. Remember when he commentated all the comps because he was the only person that anyone in the surf industry knew that had spoken into a microphone before? Don’t know how Italo Ferreira came up, but Dave literally sounded like he was in pain pronouncing his name. Aye-tall-uhh, but somehow guttural.

Something about the way he talks makes it seem like he’s always just a few seconds away from an old man racist tirade and that’s what keeps us all coming back.

A man surfing in a hood

Water was 60 degrees Farenheight but you do you I guess.

Someone breaking down about the QS

Post heat interview. “As a kid, my dream was to become a professional surfer. Then reality sets in and you start to realize that not everybody can be Kelly Slater…”

People still say that on the QS.

Chris Waring’s dad filling in as a commentator

This happened.

Chris Waring being a commentator

His dad was actually pretty good.

At one point feeling like I don’t deserve sex

If you spend your Friday nights watching the early rounds of a low-level QS event, you do not deserve the Divine Feminine and the world would be better off if you could go ahead and never procreate.

Feeling like I could make a heat

If I got a few new boards and like a month off of work to train, I think I’d have a chance in Round 1.

Someone using “Brazil” as a question

Finally, someone asking the hard-hitters. “Brazil?”

Like, that was this guy’s entire question. I think he intended to inquire about the rise of talent in the region but then the surfer just started speaking in Portuguese and all the wheels fell off.

Realizing I maybe couldn’t make a heat

I don’t know, everyone is actually pretty good. The QS is where wings take dreams.

And the webcast is a refuge from the WSL’s sterilization of surfing, far away from the humorless dynamo and all of its monotonous noise. A place where anybody’s dad can commentate and Brazil is still a legitimate question instead of a South American nation founded in 1822. It’s core.

After a few hours, I tapped out and fell asleep watching a Netflix documentary about a flat earther. And that night, I dreamt of Kelly Slater.

I dreamt of Kelly Slater.


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