Stab Magazine | The Worst Gifts To Buy A Surfer

The Worst Gifts To Buy A Surfer

Merry Christmas from an asshole named Brendan Buckley. 

style // Dec 20, 2018
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 3 minutes

It is almost the time for giving.

Which means it is the time for buying. Which means it is the time for you to get your shit together because thoughts only count in chess, abusive relationships, and psychological warfare.

And so it is the time for a Holiday gift guide.

Giving a good surf gift is easy. Some quality wax. Boardshorts. Maybe a leash. A trip, if you’re rich. A wetsuit or a boardbag, if you know that one is needed. Boards can be hit or miss — but there are a few surefire options.

However, giving a bad surf gift is even easier. Which is why I’ve busied myself this season with a guide on what not to give your loved ones who surf.

Shall we?


Slip into an Riberio.

WSL Jersey

Here’s a rule of thumb: If you have ever had sex, or plan on it in the future, you shouldn’t own one of these.

Most Home Decor

Candles. Pillows. The vast majority of ocean-inspired paintings or photographs. Unless your loved one cites “Legend” by Bob Marley as their all-time favorite album, there is a good chance he or she will despise all of these things.

GoPro Nose Mount

The international symbol of “please drop in on me.”

Peter Mel2

If this is not in your dear friend’s foreseeable future, stick to the groveler, Maverick.

A 10’2”

Pardon me, you may be thinking. A gun might be one of the most special gifts one could give.

You are wrong.

Buying someone a gun is a terrible idea. They will be happy at first. They will tell themselves it is the board that will bring them to the best wave of their life and think of ways they can start training — eating better, working out, breathing exercises, the whole nine.

You know what happens next? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. The owner changes nothing about his or her life and gathers excuses each and every swell. The board, in all of its beauty, waits patiently. One year in, it hasn’t touched the water. Two years in, same…

The truth is that anybody who legitimately wants to surf waves that require a 10’2” probably already has a 10’2”. Buying one for someone who doesn’t fit into that criteria is essentially erecting a big, timeless monument of their cowardice.

Just get them a t-shirt instead.

Adult Surf Coaching

I’m not sure if this exists in real life or only in theory, but stay away from either version.

Screen Shot 2018 11 18 at 3.08.26 PM

“Change the way you glide”

Location Co Wax

It ranked last on our definitive guide to surf wax, which means buying this for someone is your way of telling them you hope they fall off their surfboard.


The grass is always cleaner…

Changing Mats

If you’ve never got your wetsuit dirty while exposing yourself in a parking lot then you’re not core.


Pulitzer Prize Winner vs Stabmagdotcommercial… the answer is simple.

Books About Surfing

Even if it made the New York Times bestsellers list, it would still be a step down from the journalism you can access for free here at Stab.


Comments are a Stab Premium feature. Gotta join to talk shop.

Already a member? Sign In

Want to join? Sign Up


Most Recent

Unlocked: Kael Walsh, Rolo Montes, And Al Cleland Jr In ‘Saturn’

Quik’s new 20-minute surf film is so good you’ll want to burn a DVD of…

Dec 2, 2022

How Surfers Get Paid, Episode 4

The energy drinks are here. They’ve got millions of dollars, and they want your head.

Dec 2, 2022

‘Saturn’ Orbits Into Southern California

Quiksilver's newest film made landfall in Encinitas, and we were there to document the occasion.

Dec 1, 2022

The Vans Triple Crown Of Surfing Returns In 2023

Can anyone beat John Florence and Carissa Moore in a three-week window?

Dec 1, 2022

What Will Airs Look Like In 10 Years?

The final installment of our editorial exploration into the nuances of airborne surfing.

Dec 1, 2022


Can A South African Cavern Queen With No Pipeline Experience Do Well At The Vans Pipe Masters?

Sophie Bell will have a steep learning curve in Hawaii.

Nov 30, 2022

After Years Of Tragic Shark Attacks, Surf Competition Returns To Reunion Island — And A CT Event Could Follow

"We compete at J-Bay and Margarets where there's the same problem." -Johanne Defay

Nov 30, 2022


Sharing Tubes And Hummus In The Middle East’s Surfing Jewel: Israel

No Contest does Tel Aviv!

Nov 29, 2022


Joao Chianca Wants A Pipeline Rematch With JJF

And ain't afraid to ride more foam to do it in the Vans Pipe Masters.

Nov 29, 2022

An Unorthodox Marriage Of Science And Surf

Cliff Kapono and The Mega Lab are changing stereotypes on all fronts.

Nov 28, 2022


Harry Bryant Dumps Crutches, Visualizes Pipeline Pits After Snapping Leg

“For once in my life, I’m taking something a bit more serious."

Nov 27, 2022

What If You Bought This Sumatran Surf Camp For $690k?

Making a blue print out of surfing's most recurring day dream.

Nov 27, 2022

Sierra Kerr On Greasing Full Rotes, Making Dad Cry & Her Concussion @ VSHPBME 

'I haven’t got my license yet, but I'm thinking of buying a little truck.'

Nov 27, 2022


“There Definitely Needs To Be More Girls That Try Airs”

Caity Simmers' thoughts on her Vans Pipe Masters debut.

Nov 26, 2022

Preview: Who’s John John Florence Flushing Down The Haleiwa Toilet Bowl?

The final event of the CS schedule is almost upon us. Let's dissect.

Nov 25, 2022


Dane Reynolds Said These Clips Weren’t Good Enough

Could'a fooled us.

Nov 25, 2022


How A Magic Island Birthed One Of The Most Radical Surf And Skate Scenes In The World

Mateus Herdy, Pedro Barros and friends in Red Bull x Stab's No Contest, Brazil.

Nov 23, 2022

The Uber Driver Turned Crypto Millionaire Who Denounced His US Citizenship And Whips Into XXL Nazare

"I do what I want, I don't have a boss." -Toby Trouble

Nov 23, 2022