Who caught the biggest Waimea wave ever?
This clip of Michael Ho is from Billabong’s “Surf into Summer,” and I think it was filmed in 1985. I edited “Summer,” and didn’t know who the surfer was, and whoever shot it didn’t know either. A couple years later Brock Little told me it was Michael, and that he (Brock) used to pop “Summer”
Except Sean Penn and Ian Cairns
Nobody had high expectations for Fast Times at Ridgemont High, least of all the Universal Pictures execs who nearly shelved the finished product before putting it into limited release in 1981—only to have Roger Ebert, America’s most famous critic, poleax it as a “scuz-pit of a movie.” (Gene Siskel probably loved Fast Times out of
The 60s must've smelled terrible
The list of sublimely romantic songs that involve smoking is bigger than you might guess, and for my money, Otis Redding’s Cigarettes and Coffee is holding down the #1 position. A man and woman, newly in love, sit at the kitchen and talk late into the night, alone and content and glad to let the perfect moment roll just a bit longer. “I would love
The Iceman cometh to win, not make friends
Cintra Wilson described two-time world champion Damien Hardman as “monstrously capable but cursed to be the Richard Nixon of the surfing world,” and if any other World Tour pro has been carved up that neatly I’d like to hear about it. In surfing, as with every other sport, a world title does not always confer
The innovated essential from surfing's original photographer
Tom Blake was moody and asocial, frequently broke, unlucky in love, and, as far as I can tell, kept the darker parts of his psyche unknown not just to others, but also to himself. The original surf photographer, in other words. He was well connected, another fine and essential thing in a surf photog, having
Ranking the top surfer + celebrity romances of all time
On the basis of tantalizing but less-than-conclusive evidence, Chas Smith wondered aloud recently if New York surfer Balaram Stack was perchance romantically linked with former supermodel Christie Brinkley, and declared that, if it were true, the Stack-Brinkley unit would be “the best surfer + model/actress/singer connection of all time.” Oh, Charlie. Your wordplay is zing
The quiet brilliance of filmmakers Greg Weaver and Spyder Wills
Greg Noll said he could not imagine a “shittier way to earn a living” than making surf movies, what with the handbill-hanging, booking the local Elks Club, selling tickings, and flogging up and down Pacific Coast Highway to do one-night stands for high-schoolers jacked on Miller High Life and Peach Schnapps. And unless your name
Remembering the famed San Diego boardmaker
San Diego boardmaker and entrepreneur Larry Gordon, who died on January 1st from Parkinson’s-related illness at age 76, was one of those people you appreciate more and more with age. Quiet, steady, low-key, dependable. Never showed up at work with a flask snuggled in his back pocket. Never had the IRS breathing down his neck.
Time's vindication of the Wounded Gull's surf style
Time's vindication of the Wounded Gull's surf style.
Wavepools in our new, post-Kelly Slater Wave Co. era
It’s confusing when something abruptly goes from funny to serious. Richard Pryor did this trick all the time in his standup act; you’re zinging along with some gutter-mouthed riff on relationship hassles or the asshole neighbor next door, then Pryor changes direction and you’re dealing with something else entirely—divorce or racial injustice—and basically feeling dizzy