Notes from the Quik Pro Part II

3 03 2010

Bede Durbidge was near perfect in round three. Photo: ASP/Cestari

Fuck you Henry Ford and Thomas Edison. As I watch surfing on my computer I am convinced the mute button is the best invention ever.

Snapper Rocks came alive on Tuesday. The waves were tricky. The sun finally came out. The difference between a nightmare and a dream is ever so slight. Sorry, I stole that last line from one of the commentators. I promise to never do it again.

The first heat of the day. Two Brazilians. Adriano de Souza and Jadsen Andre. “Two birds with one stone” turned into “I want both to win.” I now have a strange desire to snuggle up with a soccer ball.

Six months ago Bede Durbidge did not have a clothing sponsor. Surfing is not fair. Baseball is not fair either but at least talent is rewarded, not hype. Bede should have signed a contract with the New York Yankees. Instead, he is a Kansas City Royal. Kansas City is now known for tubes and BBQ Sauce. Surfing is not fair.

Andy Irons gives the best post-heat interviews. He should do the commentating with Occy. Oh, my bad. This is a Quiksilver event. It’s like asking a Jew to go to confession. Surfing is not fair.

Dane Reynolds is no Kelly Slater. Sometimes Dane isn’t even Dane. Kelly is always Kelly. They passed the Olympic torch last week. Surfing’s torch needs more seasoning. Life is not fair.

Like many, I think Jordy was pushed. Tiago Pires won the heat. I read somewhere that Jeremy Flores thinks the judges have biases towards Americans and Aussies. He thinks the Euros are often short changed. Jordy is South African and Flores was beat like a French-headed step child.

I totally wrote off Kai Otton. He impressed. Kai didn’t have the highest heat score of the day but for some reason I still remember his waves. Beating Dean Morrison at Snapper is not easy. It’s like beating the Devil in a game of hand grenades in Hell.

I see that Adriano de Souza and Bede are on opposite ends of the draw. I would not be surprised if each made the final. But this is surfing. And surfing is…not fair.

QUIKSILVER PRO GOLD COAST ROUND 4 MATCH-UPS:
My picks in bold.
Heat 1: Adriano de Souza (BRA) vs. Adrian Buchan (AUS)
Heat 2: Chris Davidson (AUS) vs. Taj Burrow (AUS)
Heat 3: Bobby Martinez (USA) vs. Damien Hobgood (USA)
Heat 4: Kai Otton (AUS) vs. Mick Fanning (AUS)
Heat 5: Joel Parkinson (AUS) vs. Fredrick Patacchia (HAW)
Heat 6: Daniel Ross (AUS) vs. Dane Reynolds (USA)
Heat 7: Bede Durbidge (AUS) vs. Kieren Perrow (AUS)
Heat 8: Kelly Slater (USA) vs. Jordy Smith (ZAF)

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Best Bets for the Quiksilver Pro

24 02 2010

Will 2010 be Slater's last drink? Photo: ASP/Roberson

The first event of the WCT season is crucial to world title aspirations. A good start on the Gold Coast can slingshot you into world title contention. A bad result can affect your entire year. A perfect example is Kelly Slater’s early exit last year at Snapper. He seemingly never recovered. Since 2005 only 14 surfers have won a WCT event. Just 14. Can you believe that? If that doesn’t prove how difficult winning a ’CT event is, I don’t know what does.

The new One World ASP format will make things even more interesting this year, even if an Asian MIT grad can’t figure out how it works. With the Top 44 being reduced to 32 surfers at the mid-point of the season, a good start in 2010 is more important than ever.  Additionally, there’s been a lot of hype surrounding the “revised” judging criteria for 2010 and the Quiksilver Pro will be its first test at the elite level. And according to recent reports, Snapper is looking prime and ready to fire just in time. But who knows? This is a mobile event and Duranbah might see a little action as well.

Joel Parkinson (2009 Result 1st)
The aftertaste of last year’s debacle may be still haunting him like Macbeth’s demons. Unless his conscience is “too full o’ the milk of human kindness,” Parko will be looking for blood in 2010, and he’ll have more of the crimson liquid on his hands than the aforementioned Shakespearean protagonist. After nursing a bum ankle during the later half of ’09, he appears to be 100 percent healthy and that equals bad news for the rest of the top 44. Because he’ll be surfing in front of a hometown crowd, you know he wants to win this one badly. And I expect him to do just that.

Kelly Slater (2009 Result 17th)
On his death bed whiskey maker Jack Daniel went out in style. His last words were “One last drink, please.” 2010 might be Kelly’s ASP farewell tour and if he truly wants it he will be popping champagne bottles in Hawaii (or before that) in lieu of Tennessee whiskey. Last year, on the Gold Coast, everyone was talking about the kneeboards he was riding. This year they’ll still be talking about his boards, but instead opponents will also be on their knees praying they don’t draw the 9-time champ in a heat. I expect no less than a finals appearance, and if he decides to do the entire tour he’ll win number 10 this year. Book it.

Bede Durbidge (2009 Result 5th)
Bede finished second in the world in 2008. Last year he finished third. How does this guy get virtually no press? Maybe Al Qaeda should recruit the Australian, because he’s so far under the radar he could hop on a Qantas flight from Sydney to Los Angeles with bomb strapped to his belly and no one would notice. Maybe he should start wearing eyeliner or go on a Tiger Woods-esque sex bender. All kidding aside, his local knowledge and ability to beat anyone when he’s on will pay off. Expect him to make the semis.

Mick Fanning (2009 Result 3rd)
If the “revised” judging criteria holds true, which on paper rewards progressive surfing more than ever, Mick might suffer more than any of the other world title contenders. He just doesn’t have the manuevers in his arsenal to match up with like Dane, Jordy, Slater and the up-and-coming young guns. But the ASP Tour is not a Kai Neville or Taylor Steele film and the two-time champ knows how to win. Besides, the judges have suffered from Paris Hilton’s Lazy Eye Syndrome for years. Why should 2010 be any different? You certainly can’t knock Mick’s innate competitive desire and ability to win when it counts. I’m pretty sure he’ll get a good result, but don’t expect them to hand out Micktory T-shirts and trucker hats when it’s over.

Taj Burrow (2009 Result 3rd)
Taj is on a roll. He won the last WCT event of 2009 at Pipeline and the recent 4-star WQS at Burleigh. That might give him the momentum he needs to mount a world title campaign in 2010. Consistency is his strength and weakness. He’s always in the hunt but can’t seem to ever finish the job. His clock his ticking.  It can be argued the Western Australian gave progressive contest surfing its launching pad. If the tour was a Tennessee Williams’ play he’d be Amanda Wingfield, longing for the days when he was the belle of the ball. He still has a few prime years left, and half of the time competitive surfing is just luck. Taj always comes through with good results on the Gold Coast. I can’t see him finishing with less than an equal fifth here. 

Dane Reynolds (2009 Result 9th)
There’s so much hype surrounding Dane he’s like a genetically engineered love child of Barack Obama, Miki Dora and Christian Fletcher. Dane is progressive surfing’s perceived savior. Last year at Jeffreys Bay he hit his stride and began to live up to the hype—at least competitively. He has so much talent and is so in tune with the ocean, that if he was female the tides might just ebb and flow with his menstrual cycle. If the revised judging criteria isn’t just PR propaganda, his go-for-broke approach in heats will surely benefit. A good start here may just propel him into the top 5 this year. It’s a sizable gamble to state he’ll be on the winner’s podium. At Snapper, he could lose in the first round or win the whole thing. My prognostication skills are like Dane’s surfing and I’m willing to gamble on this one.

Jordy Smith (2009 Result 9th)
I saw the South African assassin surfing a marginal beachbreak in Orange County about a week ago and he was just lighting it up. He might be the best surfer in the world right now. What amazes me about Jordy is he’s 6’2’’ and nearly 200 pounds. He can throw buckets of water and huck himself six feet in the air on the same wave. He probably won’t win, but I predict he’ll make the trek to Bells with no less than an equal fifth under his belt.

Owen Wright (2009 Result N/A)
Owen is my dark horse pick to win the Quik Pro. The only negative for Owen at Snapper is he’s a goofyfoot, which means he’ll be on his backhand. If some of the comp runs at D-Bah that might help his chances even more because it’s a right or left. When it comes to competing he has balls the size of watermelons. Slater? Parko? Mick? No worries. It doesn’t seem to faze the kid one iota. If he drew Jesus of Nazareth in round three he’d probably shrug and say “looks like I’m going to have to one up this guy’s walk-on-water routine.” And he probably would.





New Year’s Resolutions for ASP Surfers

30 12 2009

Dance? No, I said you look fat in those pants. Jordy Smith and newly-crowned champ Mick Fanning celebrate the end of another ASP season.

Being the muckraking “journalist” I am I try keep my nose clean and my ear to the ground. OK, who am I kidding? My nose is dirtier than a gas station’s toilet seat. Regardless, I had the distinct pleasure of intercepting the New Year’s resolutions of the best surfers in the world.  

-Kelly Slater
Read the memoirs of famous rebels Robert E. Lee, George Washington and Poncho Villa. Win 10th title on an Alaia.  

-Mick Fanning
Legally change name to Damien Hardman II.  

-Jamie O’Brien
Win all contests he enters on just one wave instead of two. Get sponsored by Zippo lighters for daily burnings of the ASP rule book.  

-Dane Reynolds
Win a fucking contest.  

-Tim Boal
Win a fucking heat.  

 -Joel Parkinson
Have doctors genetically alter his ankles with Hillary Clinton’s canckles. That way he’ll never injure them again.   

-Chris Ward
Make it on time to all his heats court appearances.   

 -CJ Hobgood
Knock out the next punk that calls him Damien.  

-Bede Durbidge
Try to conceal the shit-eating grin from his face every time he cashes that motocross company’s check.  

-Dusty Payne
Change name to Dirk Diggler so it sounds less like a porn star.  

-Adriano de Souza
Finally quit day job as a midget rodeo clown. Then seal the clown car doors so no more Brazilians make it on the ASP tour.  

-Taylor Knox
Retire. Then unretire. Then retire. Then sign a contract with the Minnesota Vikings.  

-Rob Machado
Hire a narrator that doesn’t put you to sleep if the Drifter II ever gets made.  

-Jordy Smith
Become the first surfer sponsored by Trojan condoms. Burn through the “lifetime supply” in one month.





The First Ever Nugable Surfing Awards

15 12 2009

Kelly and girlfriend Kalani at the 2008 ASP awards banquet

The 2009 ASP World Tour is effectively over. Today a Pipe Master will be crowned. Three days ago Mick Fanning won the world title in relatively anti-climatic fashion. After months of build up and anticipation it all ended much faster than expected. Rather than a classic finish ala Machado/Slater in 1995, we got surfing’s version of a premature ejaculation.

At season’s end the ASP holds an awards banquet to honor surfing’s elite. They dress up, they drink, they give out awards and the world champion is formally honored. It’s a fine little red carpet affair.

But the ASP should honor not just the world champion, runner up and rookie of the year. There are several surfers that deserve recognition for their effort this year and beyond. Without further ado I present the first ever Nugables.

The Middle School Award—Dane Reynolds

Dane Reynolds is a freak of nature. Could you imagine if he really cared about winning? He’ll most likely finish in the top 10 this year and it appears he’s barely trying. He is not new school. He is not old school. He is middle school. Like 7th grade. He is a like an ultra-smart B student. You know the type that never studies yet still breezes through college? Being a B student is the best. It shows you are smart and talented, but not obsessed. There is nothing more annoying than obsession.

The Michael Corleone Award—Kelly Slater

Remember when Michael Corleone took on the Vatican in Godfather III ? That took balls. That’s effectively what Kelly is doing with his effort to push for the never-say-die Rebel Tour. Surfing is evolving and ASP is struggling to keep up. Kelly is the only surfer on tour with the balls and power to make this happen. He is Michael Corleone.

The 2 Live Crew Award—Jamie O’Brien

Sometimes freedom of speech is a fallacy in America. In 1989 2 Live Crew’s album As Nasty as They Want to Be was deemed obscene by a Florida judge and subsequently banned. The group was even arrested in Florida for performing songs from the album. In 2009 Jamie O’Brien released the trailer of his upcoming film Who is Job. The trailer shows him burning the ASP rule book. Even though he is a former Pipe Master, the ASP tried to ban Jamie O’Brien from surfing in the Pipeline Masters this year. In both cases order was restored and justice prevailed.

The Scooby Doo Where Are You Award—Bede Durbidge

I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again. Bede Durbidge is like a machine. Like a Terminator. He gets very little press yet he quietly makes the quarterfinals or semis in seemingly every event. He doesn’t even have a major clothing sponsor. You know how at the end of each Scooby Doo episode the gang reveals the villain’s true identity? One day I fully expect someone to reveal Durbidge’s true identity as Arnold Schwarzenegger. They’ll remove his mask and he’ll say in a thick Austrian accent “And I wud have gotten away wit it, if it wasn’t for you meaaaddling kids!”

The I-Don’t-Want-to-See-How-the-Bratwurst-is-Made Award
—Marlon Lipke

Germans are known for many things…fine automobiles, beer, classical music, bratwurst. They are not known for surfing. Marlon Lipke tried to dispel this notion unsuccessfully in 2009. He finished last in nearly every event. To be fair, he’s really Portuguese. But that makes little difference to surf fans. We STILL don’t want to see how Lipke’s bratwurst is made.

The Martin Scorsese Lifetime Achievement Award—Taylor Knox

Martin Scorsese’s films are masterpieces. His resume includes classics like Taxi Driver, Raging Bull and Goodfellas. Despite these landmark films he didn’t win an Oscar until the 2006 Boston gangster epic The Departed. It was largely believed to be a make-up award for years of snubs by the Academy. Critics jokingly called it a lifetime achievement Oscar. Like Scorsese, Taylor Knox is a legend and perhaps the smoking gun against the ASP’s refusal to implement style in its judging criteria. Can you believe Taylor Knox has won only one WCT event in more than 15 years on tour? Just one. And that was in Brazil. Knox, like Scorsese, deserves a lifetime achievement award for years of being slighted.

The Harry and The Hendersons Sad Farewell Award—Greg Emslie

The 33-year-old South African’s nickname is Bigfoot. Perhaps he was given the name because he has really large feet. Or maybe it’s because a photo of Greg Emslie has never been published in a surf mag. Greg is a super nice guy and a talented surfer. Last week he announced his retirement. The only problem is I’m not so sure he was ever on tour. There are no confirmed photographs of him on tour. He might just be a figment of the human imagination—like the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot or an attractive lesbian.





Hurley Pro Final Day

20 09 2009
Fanning and Reynolds Celebrate while Machado Drifts in the Background

Mick and Dane celebrate while Machado drifts in the background

Wake me when it’s over.

It was the afternoon of the last day of the Hurley Pro, and halfway through the quarterfinals it was as exciting as watching Tiger Woods sink a five-foot putt at a miniature golf course.

The main problem was the uncharacteristic lack of swell for a break that usually pumps in September. The other problems were the short waiting period (due to state park restrictions) and a bad call by the event organizers—choosing not to run at least some of the event mid-week, instead of hoping and praying for a swell that in typical Southern California fashion didn’t show up on time.

Twenty minutes into the quarterfinal heat between Kelly Slater and Heitor Alves announcer Dave Stanfield said, “It sure is great when there’s waves.” The unintentional comedy factor of the typical ASP announcer’s everything-is-rosy outlook is off the charts. Terrorists could have detonated a bomb killing ninety percent of the crowd, and Stanfield would probably said something like “at least Kelly Slater survived and good news folks…looks like there’s a set on the horizon.”

Meanwhile, the ocean sat bloated and weary like an overweight dog sprawled out on the kitchen floor on a scorching summer day. Every 15 minutes or so the Pacific Ocean drooled, offering up a set wave or two, and an occasional leg to hump. Earlier in the week I saw Slater pumping gas at the San Clemente Chevron and it was a more thrilling spectacle than his semifinal heat against Mick Fanning.

Adriano de Souza sits at third place in the ratings and may finish higher than any other Brazilian in ASP history, but for my money Heitor Alves is the best Brazilian surfer on tour. He’s also clearly the most underrated surfer on tour. But Slater sent the Brazo home early in yet another wave-starved heat.

Dane Reyolds whips his tail around at Trestles

The Future is now. Dane Reynolds whips his tail around.

Taylor Knox versus Dane Reynolds was the heat of the day and also featured the day’s best exchange. Knox dropped in on a head-high where-the-fuck-did-that-come-from right and just destroyed it, getting an 8.0. Then Dane picked off the very next wave (9.7) and made Knox’s eight look ordinary in comparison. He buried the rail of his 5’7 Merrick and out-Knoxed Knox in the process.

Before the semifinals the VIP area was buzzing in free beer and mental masturbatory hopes of a Dane versus Kelly final. Meanwhile, former world champion Mick Fanning was quietly winning heats after miserable heat, one Ambien off the lip at a time. During Mick and Slater’s semi Dane was battling exhaustion and dehydration. The medical staff on site gave him an IV, while the Hurley staff provided the VIPs with Bud Light to keep them entertained and hydrated. No needles required. Slater’s come-from-behind 10th world title aspirations may have ended at Trestles, unless he wins two of the three events of the European leg (which is in the realm of possibilities). So in reality, the race is now a threesome between Joel Parkinson, Fanning and Slater. With Slater as the third wheel who holds the video camera, watching mostly, waiting for the perfect moment to join the fun.

At the halfway point of the WCT season, Dane Reynolds was sitting in a regulation spot, at 34th in the ratings. After his equal third in near-perfect conditions at JBay, he jumped to 20th. Now, after and second at Trestles, he sits comfortably in 11th place. Any person who is not brain dead and/or tipping back  Tooheys at an Aussie pub would admit Dane is a better surfer right now than Fanning.

Last year, every story I read about Dane Reynolds mentioned Jordy Smith as if they were Siamese twins sipping juice boxes, rolling around a cul-de-sac in a two-seat baby stroller. At Trestles, Dane not only separated himself from Jordy, but from the rest of the ASP pack as well. He’s the present and future of competitive surfing and everyone knows it. When Julian Wilson arrives, the surfing world may just implode, scattering swatches of Diamond Dobby boardshorts in the process.

Slater may have said it best shortly after the final while Fanning was popping the champagne. “I thought Dane was the surfer of the contest. I don’t even think Mick would argue with that.”

With a shot of honesty and a humble dose of reality, the circus heads for Europe and a three-event run before the climax at Pipe.





Day 1 Observations From Trestles

14 09 2009
Kelly Slater Trestles

Slater won his heat with ease Sunday on two nines. Morris/ASP

1. Conditions were horrible in the morning. A south wind was blowing and the tide was too high. The swell was mostly from the northwest.  The rights were fizzling out. Ninety percent of the waves ridden during the first 6 or so heats were lefts. Hurley Trestles Pro organizers made a bad call and should have waited until at least 11 am to start. My guess is if the waiting period started on Monday they would have done just that. But it was Sunday and event director Pat O’Connell wanted to utilize the first of only two weekend days in the waiting period.

2. Heat 2 may have been the lowest scoring heat in ASP history. Damien Hobgood beat Drew Courtney and Dustin Barca with a total score of 7.27. Embarrassing.

3. The HD crane cam was pretty sweet, but I didn’t see it utilized much.

4. Spotted Bobby Martinez walking down the trail. He was wearing his wetsuit with socks and white Adidas tennis shoes. Must be the new gangster look.

5.  I ran into Dan Reynolds and Mick Fanning on the walk. Dane Reynolds was rocking his usual hobo chic look…adjustable golf hat and sagging khaki floods. He had three Merricks under his arms. Dane rode a super-wide 5’7’’ in his heat. Mick, on the other hand, had only one board with him. Dane even called him out. “Just one board mate,” he said with a mischievous smile.

6. Slater was clearly the top of the class Sunday. He was just flowing through sections. He glided to the highest heat total of the day with two waves in the nine plus range.

7. Brett Simpson won probably the best heat of the day against Dean Morrison and Taj Burrow. And his backside 270 nose-pick disaster was the best turn of the day. He looked like he was sliding down a handrail on a skateboard. His knuckle-dragging Geico caveman style still needs a little work though.

8. As usual Bede Durbidge was under the radar, but put together what I thought was one the top three performances on the day. He was throwing buckets of spray while Timmy Reyes looked rather pedestrian in comparison.

9. I once read about an old woman in the Midwest who saw an image of the Virgin Mary on her toast. Today, I saw a kelp patty on the beach that looked just like Rob Machado. By sheer divine intervention Rob Machado beat Taj Burrow in the second heat of Round 2. Tonight, Hurley will build a shrine on the sand and sacrafice a chicken and Pat O’Connell’s Birkenstocks.

10. Joel Parkinson looked mortal today. The halo that usually surrounds his head was even faded and worn by the Southern California smog. Kai Otton got the best of him early, but luckily he sent Kai Barger back to the Nike No Tell Motel a little earlier than he would have liked.





Nobody Listens to Turtle

5 08 2009

Turtle


“No one who wants to make a movie out of my book is smart enough to get it done.” 
That’s what author Allan Weisbecker said in his memoir about his experience with Hollywood producers and directors after his book “Cosmic Banditos” was optioned by John Cusack. Ninety percent of the time anything surfing related that Hollywood gets it greedy little fingers on immediately turns to shit. Believe me. I’ve done the research.

Out of pure luck the “North Shore” became a classic Hollywood surf film. Now I realize the competition for classic “Hollywood surf films” is…well… a little flaccid, but “North Shore” is near the top of the list. In this genre we have “Blue Crush,” “Point Break,” “In God’s Hands” and more recently the straight-to-DVD-Matthew McConaughey vehicle, “Surfer Dude.” I consider “Big Wednesday,”  the “Apocalypse Now” of the genre, which has a nice little surfing subplot of its own.

Here is the plot summary according to Wikipedia… Rick Kane, approximately 18 years of age, having just graduated high school, uses his winnings from a wave tank surfing contest in his native state of Arizona to fly to Hawaii the summer before the start of college to try and become a professional surfer. Surprisingly, the rewatchability factor is off the charts.

As a grom I knew all the lines in “North Shore.” In fact, I still remember a lot of them. For fun, I’ve taken my favorite quotes from the 1987 cult surfing classic and matched them with present-day surf industry players.

9. Nobody Listens to Turtle
Bede Durbidge. Bede needs an image makeover. He needs to beat up a girl, develop a drug habit or get some DUIs. Stat! Shoot yourself in the leg or something. Build up that street cred…you know? Bede finished second in the WCT rankings last year. SECOND! This guy is a competitive machine and has been shunned by the elite surf companies. Plus he kind of has that Turtle-eqsue blond, mop top going for him. Hence, nobody listens to Bede.  

 8. So this is where you work Turtle? Only when da surf’s bad, Barney. Cause’ when da surf’s good, nobody works!
The city of San Clemente. Let’s face it nobody works when there’s a swell and this is especially true for this costal town at the lower end of Orange County. During my last surf down there I wondered if anyone worked at all. You have to love the eclectic demographics of San Clemente–tweakers, surfers, Marines, Mexican immigrants and retirees living peacefully in one big melting pot.

7. You J.O.J? Just off the Jet.
Dane Reynolds. Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not challenging the kid’s talent, but the fact is he was born in Bakersfield. The demographics of Bakersfield are as close as you can get to the Arizona wave tank where Rick Kane honed his Pipeline skills.

6. He so haole he don’t even know he haole.
Laird Hamilton. Let’s face it “Lance Burkhart” rips. He’s probably one of the most respected surfers of his generation, but he is still a transplant.  Sorry Laird. Even if you studied tanning tips from George Hamiliton (and you just might), you’d still be a haole.

5. Don’t even touch Barno. That rhyno-chaser don’t need no big haole hand print messin’ up its whole trip.
Kelly Slater. The 9-time world champ has been shaping and designing his boards for a while now and it’s created quite the buzz, but that door I saw him riding on Sports Illustrated clearly need the rails tucked in a bit.

4. That’s not a wave. It’s a ripple. I’ve seen bigger waves in a toilet.
The surfers slogging away on the WQS tour. Man I feel for you guys…traveling the world surfing spots regular Joes will only read about. While we’re stuck at some desk with flourecent lighting they’re dabbling in French wine, Brazilian ass and Thai shemales. The Horror!

3. When da wave be here, don’t be there!
Jihad Khodr for his effort at Teahupo’o every year. Power Rankings writer Lewis Samuels said this about Jihad’s performance at Chopes…”Seriously, I think Jihad’s caddy sat deeper than him…  Rabbit was overheard describing Khodr’s performance as ‘embarrassing.’” The only thing that changed is that this year Jihad improved his average wave score to 2.39 points, and Rabbit wasn’t there.” If Danny Noonan gets a wildcard next year he’d probably beat him.

2. Here on the North Shore we treat friends mo better.
Joel Parkinson. Let’s say Kelly racks up a few wins in Europe or perhaps CJ Hobgood or Taj Burrow goes on a tear and the WCT race gets a little tighter. Will the Hawaiians take it easy on Joel and let him skate easily through heats? My guess is no. The WCT has gotten too friendly lately. I want to see some blood. I want to see fights, cursing at the judges, broken beer bottles and drugs. Damn, I miss the pro surfing in the ’80s.  

1. Scrub it Kook!
Dave Stanfield, ASP announcer. I’m pretty sure I’m going to hell when I die and when I get there I’m certain Dave Stanfield will be announcing Los Angeles Dodgers games in place of Vin Scully. I guess it could be worse. Yes, I’m talking to you Rockin’ Fig. While we’re on the subject of announcers, does Fuel TV’s Brent Ringenbach have pornographic images of one of the VP’s at Fox? That would be the only feasible explanation for Brent still having a job.