Illustration for World Mind-Surfing League

I’m going to insert this into the piece, but, since I have enough folks who get a message, psychic or over the mysterious intranet, when I post something new, I’m putting it here first. I’ve got a secret (okay, letting you in on it) plan to get this to the WSL, which I love (and was watching earlier, before the Seahawks game started. Wouldn’t it be great if they did a little skit where…

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…Hey, if you have some contacts… that’d be great. Greater. Also, I wouldn’t have finished the drawing if the surf had just cooperated and followed the forecast.

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Semi-Finals, Mind-Surfing Championships, Live Now

You’re switching from a site featuring photos of ‘mature’ nude women to WM-SL.com. “LIVE NOW” is flashing at the top of the page. You hit on a photo of perfect waves. It takes a long moment to buffer. Eventually, with a few stops and starts, an image of a man standing in a parking lot, most of the crowd obvious tourists, including an older (‘more mature’) couple with matching t-shirts reading, “Obviously we’re Tourists.” The angle moves in on an attractive man in his thirties, obviously unaware the show is about to start.

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JACK E. WILLIAMS (holds microphone close, wipes his eyebrow away from his right eye):
Oh. Hey. So, the second semi-final heat of the World Mind-Surfing Tour is about to start. Welcome to all you web and mind surfers, and to the crowd here in the parking lot at the edge of the cliff. Yes, we’re at Swamis, world famous point break in Encinitas, California. The surf is… how would you describe the conditions, Pete?
PETER POTTER (looking out at the lineup, eating a slice of pizza. He motions that he’s still eating, then spits pizza over the bluff):
Blown-out. Simple, Jackie; blown-the-hell-out. (pause) Um, it’s a boiling cauldron of mixed-direction swells. I mean; Surfline called it; six to eight south Chubasco-generated south swell, north-northwest Santa Annas howling, and a long-period northwest all the way from Alaska. It’s, I mean; it’s Swamis, for gosh sake, and no one’s out. (takes a bite of pizza) Back to you, Jack.
JACK (drops hand mirror from shot):
Peter, the field is down to four Americans. Oh, one’s from Hawaii; but, Pete; what happened to the Brazilians and the Haitians and that guy from Indonesia? And Don Reynolds, John-Jack; wildcard entries. None of them could make it out of the elimination heats.
PETER (wipes mouth with back of hand, hand on t-shirt):
Accents, Jackie. The judges couldn’t understand what they were saying. I mean, geez. Mumble mouth, shyness, that won’t get you to this level, Jackie. I mean, maybe you.
JACK (rolls his eyes):
Well; Peter, always real. Maybe too… hey; we’re going to get underway; this is a different game; the waiting is over. There’s tension, and we have waves, AND no one out to spoil the mind surfing… great. We’re now going to Brent Savage, over in the contestant’s area. Brent, are the semi-fnalist’s ready?
BRENT SAVAGE (older guy in Hawaiian shirt, glasses, standing next to the public bathrooms. He puts a woman’s purse behind his back):
Sure enough! Ready! Now, in semi-final one, Simpo Martinez narrowly defeated Sleeter Kenny, our wildcard entry from the northwest; great event for Sleeter; just… it was that floater into the inside rock finger, with the Hawaiian pullout… awesomely described… I mean, it was like you could see it; that gave Simpo the victory. Here’s the after-heat interview:
SALLY DeBOIS (very tall blonde, French accent):
So, Simpo; you took down a legend in the mind-surfing sport. It’s said Sleeter’s wave knowledge and experience in, um, challenging conditions, is… did I already say, ‘legendary?’
SIMPO MARTINEZ (with flower neck tattoo):
Um, yes. Uh, yeah; Sleeter; maybe this wasn’t his year; I, um, most definitely… all respect… he’s… yeah.
SALLY (moves in front of Simpo, looks at camera):
Yeah? I mean, that’s your answer? Yeah?
SIMPO (steps around Sally):
Yeah. Definitely.
SLEETER KENNY (about 60, with dark sunglasses, wearing a track suit, walking by, stops):
I’m coming back. Seriously. No. Wait. I’m through.(puts on hat that says, ‘FTS’) Fuck this shit!       SALLY (chuckles as Simpo reaches out for Sleeter’s hand, Sleeter smiles, shakes his head as if to suggest he’s just being dramatic:                                                                                                                         Back to you, Jackie-bird.                                                                                                                                      JACKIE (fakes shock, chuckles):
Okay; we’ll be seeing Simpo in the finals. Sleeter, greatest mind surfer of all time. I think he’ll be back. He personifies the sport. But first… Pete; re-introduce us to our semi-final contestants.
PETER (pouring beer into a red plastic cup):
Hey, Jackie; I’m… never mind. Look, web-lackys; and I do love re-explaining this all the (mutters) time. Slider Gustovson, from Oceanside… well, now Escondido; and Jay Coxworth, our Australian; have thirty-five minutes to describe what they’d be doing if they were actually in the water. The five judges, separated from the contestants and from the actual water, will view the surf on several monitors, each from a different camera angle. That way, reality and what’s being described; hopefully you get that. Not that you couch surfers get a vote. We had a drone, but it got too close to the Self Realization compound, the authorities were called, and, well, the footage is available on our site. Not pretty. Also, we didn’t think the nudies would be out around the point past Boneyards, what with the wind and all. (winks) Check my Facebook page, Droners.
JACK(checks out attractive woman in the parking lot as he looks out at the water, holding his hair down with one hand):
So, we’ll be in our roving WM-S League studio, seeing the same thing viewed by the judges AND the contestants; listening to the descriptions of each ride; seeing how the judges score. Roger Platnik, five time Mind Surfing Champion, will join me for analysis. After this break. So exciting.

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AN ADD FOR HANSEN SURFBOARDS starts and stops, ends with “We used to sell surfboards; now we’re all about the fashion; a few surfboards upstairs and on the world wide web.
A SHOT OF THE PARKING LOT shows three old vans and an even older RV, awnings connecting them, in the back corner. Jack pushes Brent out of the RV. Brent kicks the tires, pulls out and lights a cigarette. He opens the door and looks back into the RV. The woman Jack was checking out earlier, adjusting her top, steps out, then throws a kiss back inside, pauses for a moment, throws a kiss at Brent, hands him her purse, goes inside the RV.
A WORN KANVAS BY KATIN BANNER RIPS down the middle in the wind. two sides flapping.
THE SURF IS SHOWN, BIG AND BUMPY, BUT with some shape coming off the point.
SLIDER (voiceover): I’m on a 5’10” Hynson Fish, black, with all down-rails; and the extra flotation allows me to, it mitigates, one could say, the chop, as I paddle through. Ew, duck dive that one. And up.
JAY (voiceover): I’ve just switched to a Channel Island semi-gun, template taken from a classic Yater.  I think there’s a bit of Pat Curran in there. Sorry, Aussies; it’s, yes, Cal-i-for-ni-an. I’ve just paddled past Slider, out and around, and I’m going to take a chance on the inside break. A little bit cleaner, perhaps. (breathing a bit heavier) The wind is just brutal. Thankfully, I’m wearing my new O’Neill Windbreaker hood. Yeah, also Californian.
PETE: Geez; have you seen these guys? I mean, fuckin’ Slider is old and fat and no way he… what? Oh. Okay. Sorry. I just… (cuts off).
SLIDER: here’s… second wave of the set; clean, backlit; I’m…(breathing)… I take off late, in the shadows, drop… freefall… connect; cranking it… vertical; slam off the heavy lip. OW! trying… my fins are free; side-slipping, my right hand deep in the wall; no! Tucking-in. Owwww! And out! Cranking, everything onto the rail. Yes! Back up, pull it off the foam; down again. I aim for the shoulder as another section grows, opens…
JAY (talking over Slider): It’s an outsider. No, it was a ploy; I’m hitting the long section, driving straight off the roll-in whitewater takeoff. Will I connect with the… pumping, a long floater off the roof; down swoop, set my eye on the…
SLIDER: Hey, Jay; you didn’t have time to get outside; Wanker. Meanwhile, I’m still going, a few jukes and go for the nose on the rock ledges inside. So clean, so…                                                                       JACK (breathing heavily):                                                                                                                                        Oh, oh! Amazing! What did you think, Roger… Platnick… Plats? (pause) And, um, where are you, Plats? PLATS: Upper bunk, Jackie. Watching the show. Here, let me turn on my, um, actual camera.
THE VIDEO FREEZES. It may never recover. You switch to PETERPOTTERPUNTS.com, see a still aerial shot of the old couple on the beach, pulling off their t-shirts. You wait a moment, open another bag of cheetos, then hit the arrow.                                                                                                                         The next day, on the site, there’s an update. An interference by Jay Gustavson, Slider goes on to the finals, the finals then put on hold due to the surf cleaning-up and fifty surfers heading out. Photos of the contestants are from years past, though a rival website, Wasted Mind Surfing.org, shows the actual surfers. Brutal. Keep mind-surfing; we’re all champions.

MEANWHILE- while I’m working on a drawing, Happy Thanksgiving. No Hate, No Fear. I spent a lot of last Thanksgiving watching the currently-on-hold Target Pro from Honolua Bay. I actually love that the WSL allows the rest of us to watch quality surfing and, yes, do some mind surfing ourselves.

In Progress, In Color

I do appreciate a clean illustration. I just can’t seem to keep mine from getting ‘busy.’ Here is a sketch (actually third sketch) of my idea for a card for the shortest days of the year, the days when the sun, up on the USA’s north shore, barely clears the Olympics, when it’s dawn from dawn to dark.

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NOTE: I only added my name at this stage (usually I wait until the drawing’s done, then go back and add some more lines and dots and maybe color) because, if you’ll notice, I overran the corner. Here are in-color versions of two (older) drawings from my last post. Yeah, I saved the black and whites.

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Just Chchch-Changing a Few Things

Back at Palomar Community College, taking all the art classes I could get into, I never quite fit into the scene. This was 1969-71, and it seemed more important to look like an artist than to actually turn out something original or real. Things haven’t changed that much. I really started this paragraph to say that I also took creative writing; also didn’t seem to fit in. Thing is, the artists seemed to think I was really better suited as a writer, the writers (not that I asked them, it was painful enough to act like I didn’t hate their stuff) seemed to think I was more an artsy guy.

The problem persists. It should be noted that my drawing is more influenced by Rick Griffin’s work in “Surfer” than anything I learned in class; my writing… well, nowadays I just write the way I want to write. But let me add, I so appreciate any image, verbal or visual (include music and song and, sometimes, smell) that causes me to stop for a second, or longer, just to enjoy; temporarily overwhelmed.

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I plan on adding some color to the ones that are still black and white. And I have more to work on, while, meanwhile, I’m working on a drawing that might be my Christmas (or fill in your choice of solstice celebrations) card. I’m imagining a view from the back of a wave, with the Olympics in the background. I’m having some trouble finding reference material for something from that vantage point. But, I’ll pay more attention next time I go surfing.

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Adam Wipeout and the Lost Skeg

I’m crawling around, sanding and painting baseboards on a project in Silverdale when the cell phone rings. Adam starts in with the story without a ‘hello.’ “So, I just had this feeling…” He had been in bed, he said, and possibly because he was still suffering the effects of what he had referred to as ‘the crud,’ he felt the same way he did when he got the most memorable ride of his last session, the session he had to get in despite his cold. Importantly, he chose surfing as an alternative to going to ELK CAMP. Elk Camp is, it must be said, quite important to someone born and raised in one of the wilder parts of the Olympic Peninsula. And, no, they don’t hunt the elk that show up frequently in his brother’s yard.

Adam had jumped out of bed, into his car, and driven quite a distance (about 52 miles) to the spot where he had lost one of his two Mark Richards’ designed fins. Adam James knows the tides. It’s part of his job as a key member of the Hama Hama Seafood operation, down Surf Route 101 on the Hood Canal. It was dead low tide, the middle of the night, with a gale blowing down the Strait; sideways rain. No biggie. “What?” That was my response. “And this was, like, three in the morning?”

“Yeah; about.” Adam told me he figured, in his haste to get in the water, he hadn’t fully secured the fin, and it was either in the sand, where it would be difficult to find; in the rocks near shore, where kelp and such would might hide it; or out where he had been sitting and waiting, and probably just fell off from being loose.

On this same day Adam lost one of his fins, the end of the single fin on Keith Darrock’s  board snapped off from contact with one of the rudely-placed and overly-large (this is the home of two foot waves and three foot rocks) rocks that populate the point. At this point, I must add that Keith, in, I’m guessing, a discussion on the beach concerning lost and broken fins, told Adam that he had also, once, lost a (complete) fin at this break; but found it at low tide, wedged between some of those wave-forming, board-dinging, wetsuit-slicing, gloveless finger-cutting rocks. Yeah, I’m listing a few of my discoveries, including, from the day before the fin-breaking/losing event, that, if you wipe out, roll under your board, smash your lower back/ass against one of those rocks, be grateful you didn’t hit your head. Add in a few too many surfers in a tight takeoff zone and… yeah, big time fun!

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Back to Adam’s story. “And where was it?” I asked, leaning into a window to lessen the echo in the empty room.

“Where I was sitting and waiting.” Yeah.

What I had to ask Adam is whether his wife has just given up on worrying about his sanity. I mean, if I told Trish I just ‘had a feeling’ and took off to look for a lost… anything. BUT, when I read her an email from Adam, she said it was so cool that he had that sort of psychic connection, and… geez, I don’t know. Maybe she’s right; Adam does seem to get the sessions with ‘chest high’ waves while I get the none-to-one (but glassy). I am working on finishing the story of my lost paddle. Oddly, my wife, when my paddle was stuck in the pilings, said I’d get it back. She just ‘had a feeling.”

UPDATE: I’ll write about my fin-breaking, fin-losing-not-finding stuff another time. We all have stories about treasures lost or found in the ocean. I’m not sure about Adam’s psychic powers, but, what he does work on, constantly, is his network. “I heard,” he’ll say, “that it was flat on the Strait on _____” (some day I had not gone, but had been considered it). Unlike me, Adam is genuinely nice, just laughs when I make rude remarks (example: Adam- “We have to come to grips with the fact that we’ll never be really really good.” Me- “Oh, I have come to grips with the fact that you’ll never be really really good.”), remembers the names and stories of those he meets (I’m more apt to remember the stories), and doesn’t seem to offend other surfers in the water. If I’m coming back into cell phone range after a session, I’m very apt to give him a report. “None to one, but glassy.” Always. If it isn’t flat.

If It’s the Journey, and not the Destination, then…

FIRST, and I’ll be removing this later, but, to terrorist/cowards everywhere, who chose soft targets rather than any battlefield, who consider themselves martyrs when they are murderers who create martyrs; there is no glory in this; there is no reward waiting, there is no God anywhere (and if you, as I, believe there is but one God, is that God not the God of all children?) who would condone massacre, the killing of the innocent and unarmed. And to those who incite and promote violence: Your hatred and fear are consuming you; the flesh is already rotting from your bones. May this only hasten, destroying you rather than infecting others. May God extend peace, wisdom, and mercy to the many. And True Justice. I wrote this to vent after the attacks in Paris; but it applies in way too many places around the world. Always has.

This is a photo taken on a recent day when Tom Burns did a lot of driving and never got to ride a wave.

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He took this while on a long walk with Doug Charles. “Kindred spirits talking story” is how he described the visit.  If your search for waves takes you to the Strait of Juan de Fuca, you probably know who Doug is. He’s “Uncle” Doug to many, the guy who tells you “you’re really not supposed to be here” to others.  If you do surf, you are a guest.

Respect given is respect returned.

Hey, I’m not all enlightened. Far from it. My inner motto, in the water, is “I’m here to surf.” We can get into the sociopath-ic-ness of that another time.

I’ve been trying to include the journey, the there and back, the interactions with other surfers, even with non-surfers, as part of my surf sessions. This is not a natural or easy thing for me. If I were a fisherman, I’d be inclined to only count the time as ‘fishing’ when I was reeling something in. When there are lulls between waves, I’m more prone to sharking, paddling left and right, than patiently waiting. Even if I chat with some other searcher, I’ll most likely be checking my lineup, looking for indicators, trying to make sure that, when the set comes, I’m in position (that is, a better position than others in the water). More likely, I’ll go for some of those inside waves and hope I’m not on one when the set arrives. I’ve only sort of given up on counting my waves. Sort of.

I’ve also been trying to come up with a phrase that might crystallize the experience for surfers in a place that is so rare; the fickle, imperfect, wild, access-so-frequently-denied, beautiful, frustrating secret coast. I haven’t been successful, but now claim ownership of “Keep it Strait.” It was a throwaway line in an reply (to one of my usual overly prosaic emails) from Drew Kampion, the man who penned “Always Summer on the Inside” for O’Neill Wetsuits (with the image, made quite an impression on the 16 year old me) and the now-and-for-years cliche’, “Corduroy to the horizon.”  I’m saving his email saying I can have it, but, all respect, Drew.

It’s tempting to add, “If you can’t keep it secret… keep it Strait.”

It’s semi-related to the North Shore expression, “Keep the Country Country.” I do include all the negatives in thinking of how to illustrate this. Those are all part of the journey. The journey is part of the session. As in all things, working on it.

DISCLAIMER AND ALERT- Immediately after I read the RANT section to my wife, Trish, with the intention of deleting it from the post (she asked why, if I meant it, should I delete it; so… maybe later), while checking my e-mails (and all this was immediately after the Seahawks lost the Sunday night game), I discovered I had a comment pending. It was from Foamclimb (probably not a given name- self-given, maybe). “Could read a bit homophobic, no? How about ‘Sometimes better than Lake Michigan?'” It just didn’t compute. Was he saying something about the RANT?

Maybe I was delirious from the defeat and the ‘knock-em-out’ pills Trish had given me for the headcold I’d exacerbated by surfing two days in a row; whatever; it was when I woke up (sort of, not actually fully awake yet- this is how those pills work) that I realized it was about “Keeping it Strait.”

OH, SURE. NO; never gave a thought to how that might sound to, you know, surfers who might not be heterosexual. AND, OH, maybe (referencing an earlier usage of ‘straight,’ as in not drunk or stoned) surfers who might be stoned or drunk or otherwise drug-influenced (like me on the nighttime cold pills) may also take offense.  We can’t have that. No.  AND, when I thought it might be good to add, “If you can’t keep it secret…” GEEZ. NO.

SO, let me say I did not mean anything mean, or to demean anyone except those who do not respect and appreciate the rare gift we are sometimes given of a few cold sliders. AND, when I say a few cold sliders, I’m talking about waves and really can’t imagine any other twisted usage of the phrase. It’ not like I said, “a few long straight tubes” or…

WAIT; In going through a few wave descriptions that could (maybe) be construed as sexual, and not wanting to be too crass, I’m thinking back to the artwork by a guy in San Diego who managed apartments for my brother-in-law. His stuff was definitely not in any way PHALLIC. Quite the opposite. So, I asked him what the opposite would be. “VAGINAL,” he said, with a straight face. “Uh huh,” I said, “vaginal.”

OKAY, THEN; I may not ever progress farther with “Keeping it Strait.” I’d give it back to Drew Kampion, but, once he sees how negative it can be, he may not want it.

All TIme (So Far) Strait Skunking

“Everyone gets the same forecasts,” I am quite fond of saying, and, indeed, probably just did say to one or more of the accumulated surfers, one of whom said he didn’t self-identify as a hipster. “You could shave the beard,” I offered, if he didn’t want to look like a surf hipster. Or he could have gotten in the water if he wanted to look like a, you know, surfer. This was all taken after I got out of the water after two and a half hours of cruising on little waves, mostly alone. This sort of de facto crew was mostly there at dawn, with an incredible number of other rigs pulling in, checking it out, discussing the fact that there should have been bigger waves, better waves. “The buoys, the forecast, the…”

Yeah, well. It’s the Strait. I actually sort of set up this shot, calling for one of the VWs to tighten up so I another could fit in. And there was another one back by the main road, evidently broken down. And there’s one up on the road; maybe you can see it over the top of the others. I did, at one point, say, “Why don’t you all do a VolkswagenTrain to Hobuck.”

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Maybe it’s because it’s an El Nino (gee, where’s the key for that curly thing that should go over the n?) year, maybe it’s because the Seahawks have a bye week; maybe the fact that the road closer to Neah Bay was washed out during the previous day’s rain; maybe, maybe there’s a great explanation for why a record number of surf enthusiasts, surf yuppies, some hipsters, and pretty much everyone who ever surfs in the northwest, was out. As for why the surf chose to not come down, who knows. It’s the Strait.

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Different angle, same group of woulda-been surfers had there just been waves. The two folks in the nearly-but-not-quite (because they’re not like couples with matching windbreakers) matching sweaters and the city-sized dog, were probably also planning on surfing. Behind me, and I now wish I’d taken a few more photos, was a nice setup of beach-made coffee, some boutique snacks, a bottle of sparkling Pellegrino water, which, later in the afternoon, could be replaced, perhaps, with an appropriate wine. The vehicle was there at dawn when I arrived; and, when the guy sleeping inside got up, and I said the waves were big enough for an old guy like me, and wondered why all the younger folks didn’t go to the coast and take on overhead, long period swells, he… well he rolled out his yoga mat and started doing, I guess, yoga.

“Getting into my wetsuit is enough of a warm up for me,” I said. As what turned out to be a set rolled in from the darkness, I added, “It’s big enough for me.” What I didn’t say is I should have listened to Keith. He figured, and now I just knew, correctly, that the swell wouldn’t hit where I was. Yeah, I should have waited for Monday.

Oh, I should mention that behind my birdshit-splattered rig were groups of surf power couples, chatting, with new personnel being added, others giving up and trying to beat the rush for the ferries. It’s not like one can really tell a real surfer just by looking at a crowd. A Patagonia cap might not mean the person wearing it rips. However, I might offer that guys who pile out of a rig with four boards in bags on the rack, each one looking all impressed by the number of people hanging out (three surfers bobbing in the actual water at this time), and then each give a nod to the only guy, and an oldie at that, in a wetsuit… those guys might be wannabes.

Let me reiterate that I did catch a lot of waves. The couple who live down by Crescent came out on SUPs, rode quite a few; Big Dave, now again employed (which explains why he was there then on Sunday), paddled out. When the tide was about to do in what waves there were, one other guy on a long longboard came out, caught a wave. “That’s one,” I said, being friendly. What I did notice from the water was the sort of slow motion movement of surf rigs into and out of the area.  I asked Mr. Yoga before I left, “Since you never did surf, maybe you kept count of how many vehicles came and went.” “About 80, I’d guess,” he said. “So crowded,” I offered. “You’re looking at the future,” he said, “word’s out. Maybe you heard of a place called Malibu.”

I did look at the future. Gathered at the water’s edge, chatting in groups like it was a Ballard block party. I’m not hating, here; maybe it’s just my image of surfers hasn’t been properly shifted from the illusion of blue collar rebels to, to… Anyway, Keith did get surf, and Adam Wipeout and his friend Nate got surf. They drove past the scene I was involved in, made it past the now-partially opened road, checked out the coast, managed to score somewhere in between. I passed at least ten vehicles still headed out when I was cruising back down Surf Route 101. When Adam and Nate drove back past this spot, it was dead, dead flat.

“Epic Skunking,” Adam said. “Well,” I said, “I got more waves than anyone on the beach.”

Today it may be firing. NOTE: Again, I’m not hating; we all just want to have fun. Next time I’ll bring some Pellegrino water, though I’m not fond of the sparkling kind. “Maybe Wednesday” (a holiday for many) I heard a woman in the parking lot say. “What does the forecast say?” “Iffy.” Iffy for sure. Always iffy.

The Lost Paddle- The Full and (not quite) Final Story

You may have to study this photo carefully. There are some clues.

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Clint, boat shop owner from Port Townsend (with cracker), is sitting in front of Tim Nolan’s car. Beyond Clint is the man I only know as Nick. Behind Nick is his son, Adam. Beyond Nick and Adam is my SUP and my car, thermos and cup on the top, the back open. Beyond that is an older model Suburban, owned by a guy named Raj. Beyond that is some surfer who got her too late, wondering where the hell the waves went; or if there had been waves at all. All will be explained.

If you look a bit closer, you may discern a paddle on top of the heavily-damaged, never-repaired (partly because I still insist I’m not a dam SUPer) SUP. That would be the paddle Nick just, and this was shockingly gracious, gave me. I carry it with me when I go surfing, ready to return it to him when we next meet up. Tim Nolan may not be in this photo because he was taking a picture with his telephoto of my paddle, stuck in the wire rope holding two of the three pilings that instantly identify this spot. The surfer who performed the act/prank of grabbing a paddle I would have bailed to recover had the wave not been so good was, at this time, unknown. I should say, at that time.

So, I’m actually going to write this epic mystery/saga on my zip drive (rather than here, live), so… so stay tuned.

CHAPTER ONE- SURFING WITH gOD (the upper/lower case is relevant)

I asked the other stand up paddleboarder what it was he liked about surfing. “When I’m on a wave,” he said, “I feel like God.” Okay. A few rides later I had to ask, “You mean like ‘a’ god; or, like ‘the’ God?” “If I’d said ‘a god’ it’d have a completely different meaning; now, wouldn’t it?”

It would (to be continued). Wait, here’s a photo of Clint taken on a different day at another (secret, or, I should say ‘secret’) spot. It was taken by Adam “Wipeout” James, sent to me to gloat, originally, and, more recently, as part of the ongoing discussion of what constitutes ‘head high.’ Adam will also be a character in the upcoming mystery. So, yeah; okay, it does seem to be head high.  [UH-OH, couldn’t use the shot- too much extra information]. You’ll have to take my word for it; It’s headhigh, Adam Wipeout Scale; I’d say five feet, three feet Hawaiian.

 

“Damn Strait” and “Energy Between the Lines”

I’ve been trying to come up with a line that conveys the message that there are never any decent waves on the Strait of Juan de Fuca; or if there are, they’re rare fickle and probably not worth the effort of looking for them. Everyone who has tried a few times has been skunked on a percentage of these trips. The drawing is utter fantasy. Sometimes the waves are, too.

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I’m also always trying to come up with a slogan for realsurfers.net other than “shoulder hoppers and name droppers.”

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As with everything, working on it. Since I fired up the printer/scanner, I figure I should add at least one more so I can do a medium size; something one can look at without moving the image up and down. The waves may be going off right this minute. Somewhere, they no doubt are.

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Not that it’s all that relevant, but, after getting the drawings reduced and a couple of copies at the Fed-Ex/Kinko (unless they’ve dropped the Kinko altogether) yesterday, I made some inquiries as to what it would cost to put together a little book of illustrations. I discovered that… well, my second or third question was, “Then how does anyone make any money with books?” “Um, maybe a… printshop? Volume? Um; hey, we don’t know. That’ll be $3.66 for the copies. Oh, and you have some pens?” This morning I discovered the pens that make that in-between line I really need, the two-pack… blue. Not black. Blue. Blue like one gets from a trip to the Strait. Maybe the good kind of blue. Damn, I could have been there by now.

Sorry, I was just interrupted by Adam Wipeout. “I think it’s firing.” Bluer.