A little over a year ago (last Sunday was the actual anniversary), I had brunch at Universal Cafe and then went up to the beautiful little town of Bolinas (it doesn't exist; don't try to find it) on the invitation of my dear friend Josh, himself the subject of an exciting and titillating bromance that began on IRC way back when and has yet to be consummated with Ice, largely due to my abstinence from booze. Alas.
Since then, I've managed to break a Softop (that happened in the first couple of weeks, actually), sprain an ankle, cut myself in a few places, get water in every sinus, get sand where sand does not belong and, as of some point a couple of weeks ago, actually start riding waves in earnest. I'm a shitty surfer who still needs to learn what to do once he's standing up on a board ("turning" has been suggested), and is also still learning when to shut up in the lineup (as it turns out, not everybody wants to be my friend), but I'm totally hooked.
I don't really look like a surfer, and my participation in "surf culture" amounts to occasionally listening to Sublime. Being an active member of Stoke Report doesn't count, since the Surf Gods in Orange County have yet to deign that GNU/Linux and Brunch are part of the scene. However I'm definitely a surfer, which I can qualify by the fact that I went nearly 9 months without really a single stand-up ride and enjoyed every minute of it. Few would submit to such punishment. My home beach is OB. 'Nuff said.
I lost my job back in May, which has been great for surfing. Some would argue that I lost my job because of surfing, though there were other factors involved. Really. I swear. Every morning that I can, I strap a board (currently a 7'6" but looking to shorten up) to my Xtracycle (named "Momma") and pedal out to the beach, flail for two hours or so, and pedal home. I'm looking for a job in earnest, but I suspect my next board will have one of these signs printed on the bottom:
I wanna thank everyone, particularly Josh and the Stoke Report family, who have helped foster this new pastime of mine. My partner Jon really deserves the prize, since he's had to tolerate as well as clean up after my obsession, and I keep making promises to do stuff for him that I break because the waves are firing. Or because it's morning. Or just because. I'll be back in four hours, I swear!
Surf has been great for my health, my self-image, my stamina, and my happiness. It's also caused me to spend a lot more time outside than I used to. Sorry, IRC friends! I swear, I still find your lives fascinating. However, the beach is calling, and I can always read the scrollback. If I ever get around to it.
Could you imagine that? Livin' at the beach?