Friday, February 27, 2009
My friend is a cheater. He is tall, athletic, an excellent paddler, a phenomenal natural surfer, and he insists on riding 9' longboards like they are shortboards. Yes, he occasionally nosetouches, but mostly just pumps, jives, floats, and bashes. When I used to be a diehard sponger he would give me a bit of a hard time because it was "easier" to ride prone than standing. Now he justifies his cheating. "Surfing is about catching waves and having fun." Simple. True.
Is riding a fish, log, mat, kneelo, glider, funnyboard, toothpick, or boogie cheating? Is surfing most valid when it is done in a more difficult manner? Who is qualified to judge which is the most difficult of wave riding arts? Surely someone who is accomplished in all disciplines. Is that you? It's not me.
I've been burned and snaked a fair share of times for bouncing about on a Neumatic. I've had rocks thrown at me for riding a boogie at good barreling waves. I assume the fact that prone riding is viewed as an easier surfing art justified the perpetrators' malicious acts.
The wood ancients are all the rage partly because they're difficult to surf. The MSurfica/Hynd cult is partly validated by the perception of difficulty.Why isn't the West Oahu ripper pictured above (Danny Kim) a modern hero? He is doing what few others can do and doing it well.
And those A.P.E.S are the biz. If you have a pair send them to me. I prefer the green.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
I spent some time at parking lot reef this last weekend. I saw some good surfing, mostly by people who were not me. I spied RK on his little Simmons board. People tend to buzz on this board idea. Even reputable surfboard craftsmen whisper to me about the board as RK walks down the beach. Though I'm not particularly interested in surfing the specific design, I do find the story of this strain of surfcraft pretty compelling. Are we witness to the advent of a distinct line of surfing design? With Kenvin et. al. are we seeing a moment of punctuated evolution in creativity? Certainly there has been enough mysto-rootsism publicity to move a small hoard of experienced and experimental surfers onto these li'l sims. The silver cloud of the long awaited (now mythical?) surf film Hydrodynamica parades around the rim of this strand of surfing life- creating a shadowed enthusiasm. Regardless, I am interested to see what comes next.
One simple question: If this is a surfcraft lineage in the making, why would a surfer buy one of these little soap bars from anyone other than the originator? I've seen others making the design, but if I can get one from the braintrust, why wouldn't I?
All photos courtesy Gtall, thanks.