Suicide Point, Strait Backside Cheater, Last of Captain Sketchee

I used up most of my discretionary time trying to get my scanner to work for more than one image without three failures. I’m kind of through with the Captain Sketchee drawings, though I’m going to use the “Surf Garb” image, double-sided, to hang over the great sport clothes Tyler Meeks has on offer at the Disco Bay Outdoor Exchange (at least that’s my plan) a great place to stop on your way to or from Hurricane Ridge, the Strait, or the West End; possibly in search of mythical Suicide Point.

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After all, many of us scan the Goodwill racks for reasonably priced surf garb and gear; some cruise Craig’s list for equipment; Disco Bay has it without that Goodwill smell, without that Craig’s list, um, excitement (wanted to say risk).

Oh, and Tyler is kind enough to offer some surf-centric local art.  Happy Easter Weekend.

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Hydro-philia: Having a love for, Affinity for, Craving for…

…water.  I’ve been calling my friend ‘Hydrosexual’ Stephen Davis for a while, and, I know because I asked, he’s kind of okay with the nickname. It is appropriate because he loves all (and participates in many) sports having to do with water: Skiing, snowboarding, kite surfing, surfing, ice hockey; he owns a sailboat, works occasionally on a famous catamaran on the Big Island.

BUT, there are, I’m sure, problems related with being a hydrosexual. Some people just don’t understand. AND, has the problem of spammers, keying off the sexual part of hydrosexual, sending all sorts of fake comments on cheap pills, various enhancements, air jordens (not sure what unseemly thing that might be), knockoff watches, busty babes in backwater bayous, Trump/Putin love notes, ways to win at Russian Roulette… I don’t know; I’m afraid to click on any of them.

AND, WordPress has, one, identified them as spam, and, two, won’t let me open most of them (not that I’ve tried, but, once, sliding the cursor a bit too slowly…). Nothing shocking, just a ‘404’ or some code that means, “If you don’t want to blow up your laptop and/or skew the mid-term elections… move your cursor away… now. NOW!”

Of course, I exaggerate. Nevertheless, forget Hydrosexuality; we’re moving Stephen to Hydrophilia. So, um, let’s see how this sounds: “Hydrophiliac Stephen Davis.” Here’s a couple of shots he sent me, finally, of his Big Island Big Boy Bike. I think, in the outside shot, out there in the glare, there might be waves. Waves!

All right, maybe all real surfers are hydrophiliacs.  I will be checking my “Comment” and “Spam” sections to see if this stirs up Trolls or Trotsky-ites.

MEANWHILE; I have been remiss in reporting Archie Endo is home from in Discovery Bay for a while, continuing to recuperate from the stroke he suffered while working in the fishing industry in Thailand. Archie is a devoted longboarder and an expert in salmon, in particular, as well as other species. He is still working as a middleman, mostly, I think, in Tuna processing and distribution.  He is recovering; and, if we have some chance at actual waves, I plan on taking him with me.

When Archie was last here, Stephen took him to the public pool in Sequim. It did him a lot of good. Sorry, I don’t do pools.

The once and future Archie.


the Occasional Faceplant

So, Trish opened the Facebook the other evening. I was sitting kind of caddy-cornered, probably about “Jeopardy” (dvr’d) time (so, some time after 8pm), and Trish lets out one of those “Eeeee-ahhh-yuck” kind of not-really-quite-a-scream, twists the laptop around on the TV table, asks, “Do you know this guy?”


“Where’d it come from?”

“Stephen Davis sent it. He says it’s someone… Wade. You know a Wade?”

“Wade. Yeah. He used to live in Port Townsend; another kite surfer; moved to Puerto Rico.”

Evidently Wade was surfing, out alone, and… well; faceplant.

So, I wrote Stephen, still on the Big Island, still hasn’t sent me a photo of his surf-set-up bike…

Beat down
this just points out what a pussy I was with my minor head hit.
I would love to put the photo on my site.
I do remember Wade didn’t want the (great)
photo of him kite surfing posted.
But, whoaaaa; ouch.
Trish was going through the hotmail,
found this really big photo closeup.
“Do you know this guy?”  I checked out the photo; hairline.
“Um, yeah; Wade; he’s in Puerto Rico… guess he has power.”
“They have big waves there?”
Talk to you soon. Send bike photo. Get waves. DOn’t face plant. Erwin
WAIT, There’s More: Since Wade will be upset anyway, even though Stephen says, “It was on Facebook; it’s out there.” Okay, so now here is the photo of Wade and the piece that went with it. Good luck Wade.
Ceremonies of the Horsemen

The story is, Stephen Davis was working for me twenty five miles away from the secret surf spot north of Port Townsend when he got a call from Wade, telling him the winds were perfect on the Straits. It was already past seven, with little or no wind on the finger of Puget Sound where we were painting. “Take off,” I must have said; and he did; arriving very close to sundown, doing all the arranging of kite and lines and wetsuits. Wade was already in the midst of what turned out to be a bit of a mystical experience. He had kite-surfed close to a pod of Orcas beyond the surfline, this observed by a group of people holding a Straits-side memorial for a recently departed 94 year old woman. And a sunset that was particularly special. Though Stephen didn’t see the pod of whales, he was, coming in by the light from vehicles and the one light in the parking lot, wrapping up the lines and organizing the gear, surprised when a woman from the memorial party thanked him for gliding, flying across the waves… as if he, Wade, the whales, the sunset, were all part of the ceremony. Who’s to say? And that added to the magic for Steve.

Please forgive the redundancies. Wade, please forgive the publicity. Russian hackers and American conspirators (just in case you care about surf-centric sites; fuck you.

Casualness and Casualties Thereof

Okay, this isn’t me in this photo; it’s Deon Wilson at Dungeons, Cape Town, South Africa, courtesy (thank you) of “The Telegraph.” I’m sure he was trying his best to appear casual as he went down the line, all cool and ready to rip it up.


Something went wrong. If he’d just surfed, let’s say, ‘routinely,’ safely, ridden toward the shoulder, ahead of the curl, maybe making a few adjustments, swoops rather than carves, he probably would have made the wave. Oh, but no; Deon decided to throw it up toward the lip, no doubt thinking, “This’ll be exciting, this’ll be cool.”

Okay, I have a whole real life (as in ‘out of the water’) story to go with this possibly-overwrought, definitely-stretched metaphor; but I have to go to work to make up for the money I didn’t make this week, partially (and again) due to my just appearing to be too damn casual, doing it (after almost 49 years) my way.

Later. Oh, and just like Deon, I’ll remember the wipeout longer than I’d remember a nice, safe, routine ride.  And, though I’m perfectly capable of uncontrolled enthusiasm, I do plan on, mostly, staying casual.

Casualness is a form of rebellion. Okay, I’ll be rethinking this a bit before I add to this post.

Captain Sketchee in Color

and ready for more.

More what? More whatever; as long as it doesn’t require running or excessive sweating. No, and he’s done with nude beach volleyball (something about the leaping). He is educated (and he can list his credentials), opinionated, and ready to discuss several non-urgent, not-really-controversial topics in any one of several casual settings, including surf beaches and/or surf-adjacent parking areas.

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“They’re called car parks in much of the world,” is just one of many pieces of info he’s willing to share. Plus, Captain Sketchee has an encyclopedic knowledge of pretty much every wave he rode from 1963 to 1968, the year he used his Uncle’s influence to get into the Coast Guard Auxiliary, just the start of his auxiliary naval career (the ‘Captain’ is strictly honorary).

“Yes, I hot-dogged the outside section, did a spinner, dropped a BA, cheater-fived right past one of those kooks on a 7’6″ garage soul ‘experimental’ board, did a soul arch and a standing Hawaiian in the shorebreak; Tamarack, September 17, 1967. Ebbing tide, afternoon session, fourteen completed rides, one swim, three ‘call offs,’ one verbal exchange, one deferred confrontation on the beach. Early cloud cover.”

The Captain is also known to distribute sage insight such as: “I probably should have made a few friends along the way, but… friends, inevitably, want to share a wave. One (I’ve found that, if he says ‘one,’ he probably means himself) evidently, has to be willing to go alone. All alone.” This might be followed by, “No one drops in on someone he or she (rather than using the more common, less elegant ‘they’) respects, so, blast it all, why’d you totally flamin’ burn me?”

“I don’t think I ‘totally flamin’ burned’ you, Captain; you blew the takeoff on the previous wave, missed two before that; I just… maybe I just lost faith. Sorry, I said ‘previous.’ Maybe ‘preceding’ might have been a better choice. What say you?”

CAPTAIN’S LOG- Surf Date, 03/11/18. Secret spot of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Muddy parking area/pullout. Very small reef break. Sunny but East wind side chop. Four completed rides. One semi-barrel. Two drop-ins. One verbal situation. One shared ride. One confrontation diffused. Going to Westport tomorrow. Ample parking.

Yeah, okay; I was just going to post the photo. Got to go.

Apre’s Surf and Avant Anything Else; Captain Sketchee’s Sport Togs and Fashion Garb

“Avant,” Mr. Sketchee told me, evidently including me with the ‘Surf Fashion lemmings’ and ‘Thrift store dumpster divers,’ “is French, and thereby, mas’ sophisticato, for ‘before.'”

“Mas’ sophisticato?” I asked, knowing, that as another figment of my imagination, Captain Sketchee got his start in fashion at the Port Angeles Goodwill (just down Lincoln from the North by Northwest surf shop) when he found some faux (more French) Admiral’s nautical coat; unfortunately not in the proper size.

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“It’s creepy,” Trish said when I showed her this drawing; “Why would you want to draw… him?”

“T shirts,” I said. “I’m going to add some waves, some lettering… and, besides, he was Mr. Creepee, originally; but, um, he’s, uh, evolved. And, anyway, what about the drawing? Clean, tight; medium lines?”

“The drawing’s fine, but… nobody wants that on a t shirt. I mean, do you?”

I kind of do. I mean, with the lettering and… quality t shirt, and… in my size.

AKA Captain Sketchee…and Other Redrawn Images

Life is all a work in progress. When I was trying to scan a sketch of my new character, Captain Kreepee (the lettering above the drawing already ripped, not cut, off); thinking what I’d say about it, I suddenly thought, “Hey, maybe Captain Sketchee might be a better name for the wannabe surf garb purveyor (whoa; and purveyor sounds kind of similar to pervert, which he may just be).”

Image (43)So, I’ll redraw; tighten it up; and then he’ll be back. Yeah, better research double-breasted suits, also.

MEANWHILE, still tightening-up potential t-shirt art. Here’s where the cheater five drawing is currently: The one top right is the latest.

Can’t Stop Myself from…

…adding more lines. I try for simple; really; but, if no one stops me, I just keep going until…

Image (38)I’m trying to get some illustrations together for (this is kind of a secret and has always been something I’ve been interested in) some t-shirts. I have, actually, done some designs for others, but, as always, I just keep going, adding lines, adding some pointillism (fancier name for dots), some more shading.

Doing some drawings for use in coloring books has helped, but… So, for the above drawing I avoided the ‘extra fine’ pens. Fine lines, I know, through my experience in serigraphy (snotty name for silk screening), don’t always work. They get lost in the process.

The process. My process is I just keep trying.  So, here’s the best I could do with my scanner (because I’m impatient and can’t get to the printer for a couple of days) on a drawing based on a photo I took of a secret and scary and fickle and dangerous and, if I didn’t mention it, secret spot somewhere out on the Strait. The photo very briefly appeared on this site before fear of landmark recognition by desperate and/or frustrated surfers (and having this pointed out to me by several friends) lead to its removal.

Image (39)Image (40)Maybe, in your mind, you can connect the two drawings. I am pretty happy with the rocks in the foreground. Lots of lines; lots and lots of lines.

Blame Laird Hamilton if you must, but…

…Chimacum Tim just got a seven hundred dollar (a bit more, plus the board) space age whatchamacallit, and can’t wait to Foil the Strait.


“Um,” I asked, “how do you, like, catch something… I mean, it, it just kind of seems like…”

“Well,” he answered, “in the videos…”

I sent this photo to several of my friends, Keith “no, I’m not calling you with wave reports” Darrock, Adam “Wipeout” aka “Roundhouse” James, and Hydrosexual Stephen Davis.  Adam hasn’t responded since he told me, “Erwin; I told you it wasn’t going to be working.” Keith texted, “looks flat.” Stephen Davis, who correctly predicted that the latest craze (oh, they’ve been around a while, but not for, you know, regular surfers) from Hawaii (at least Maui and the big island) would eventually show up on the far northwest of America.

Anyway, having already practiced my standing-up on a standup paddle board, and, maybe snagging a half-session’s worth of tiny peelers, I had to go, and Tim, who works on the Washington State Ferries, moved on to somewhere else.

Wait, maybe, on a choppy cross-Sound crossing… I’m just thinking… Tow-in. If you see Tim cruising across the Strait or the Salish Sea, please take a photo. Wait. No. Vid-e-o.

Meanwhile, if you’re headed for (or home from, skunked) the fickle and highly-questionable  (as in, “Are there waves there?” “Not really.”) waves of the Strait or the West End, stop in at the Disco Bay Outdoor Exchange. They have lots of gear, plus some work by local artists (including me); and Tyler might enjoy your tale of ‘can’t miss’ forecasts gone awry.