Kelly gets it.
The Things We’ll Do For A Wave
Ed note: the following is the third installment of our new weekly email chain called the Stab Fwd. If you're into it, subscribe here.
4 AM on a Thursday morning, five weeks ago. The sun won’t be up for another three hours.
At the moment, surfing is illegal. Every time you go outside, you’re required to print, date, and sign a form explaining your purpose.
So I do, because I’m “going for a run.”
Then I put a wetsuit on. Then I put sweatpants and a hoodie over it, complete my disguise with a mangled pair of running shoes. I leave my house and jog past the police station as two officers smoke cigarettes outside, leaning against the wall with tired eyes.
Five minutes later, I get to my car, which is strategically parked near a quiet beach access and has a board in it. I surf for an hour in the darkness (your eyes adapt) and come in feeling revived.
The things we’ll do for a wave.
Thankfully, as of last Saturday, eluding police is no longer a requisite for me. But I thought that anecdote would serve as a good intro and flow nicely into a few of this week’s stories.
One thing that’s nice about writing is that it can force you into thinking about things to an extent that you otherwise would not have and try to apply some sort of rational values to otherwise pointless or dumb shit. See above.
Heard of those studies that conclude good looking people are more likely to be perceived as honest, kind, reliable, etc? Maybe that works for people who are good at getting barreled too. I trust this guy.
Noa Deane And Matt Biolos Have A Complicated Relationship, And Why A Trailer Fin Can Be A Gamechanger
A surfboard can somehow intensify and pacify a feud at the same time. PS - Turns out Simon Anderson was onto something.
Now, Let’s Admire The Brilliance Of Andy Irons
This clip is outstanding. Some people will say it was rude, he shouldn’t have done that, he’s entitled, what if Medina did something like this, etc. Others will use it as inspiration heading into a potentially crowded weekend. Whatever works for you.
You know how some surfers always look so centered and it almost appears as though their board is simply an extension of their body? I think Julian Wilson is a good example of that. Anyway, that’s what I had in mind when watching this new clip of Griffin. Damn, he’s good.
Side note: Writing that bit about being centered made me think of Rasta riding a board with sacred geometry patterns painted on it, which made me think about how boards like that are pretty much designed to go straight but sell for like $1000, which made me uncomfortable.
Gonna watch Griffin again now then go surf.
New thing: I’m going to use this space to feature the work of some of my favorite photographers. Surf photography is special. One single frame can be more moving than a year of daily ten-minute vlogs. However, in order for an image to have an impact like that, you have to give it attention, you have to break the curse of the scroll.
I want to highlight that and support the people who have invested their time, money, effort and creativity into producing those frames for the rest of us to enjoy. Give them a follow, buy a print, or just take a moment to appreciate the fruits of their labor.
My prompt to them is simple. Share a moment from the past year and explain why you like it. We’ll start this week with Jimmicane.
“I know most people don’t think of this, but it’s very rare to see an A+ lineup of Lowers. Occasionally someone may get one that looks decent with offshore winds in the morning, but to me, Lowers is at its best in the afternoon when the wind is dead. At that time, there’s typically 100 people out dropping in and pushing down sections, making life tough for a lineup photographer.
On April 15th, all the elements aligned, but Covid had shut down surfing. It was mesmerizing to watch flawless Lowers sets roll through with no one out. This is a photo I’ll never be tired of staring at.”