/*23 Breaths: August 2010*/

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Temporary Windows

Photo by Harold Ward (that little dot in the shoulder)

Looking out through temporary windows 
out the door 
down the line 
past the fall
past the winter
past this wave and past the next one too

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Seeds of Change

 The squirrels LOVE this time of year!

It's cool and damp this morning at 23B.

The calendar says August but the weather says it may soon be Fall.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

Things are looking up

I've been having a lot of fun with 23Breaths and readership has steadily improved.
(to be fair I check the site 170 times a day so a big thanks to you 6 other readers!)

This is a definition of  "small potatoes" in the blog world but it's fun and I have meet a bunch of great people.

(sadly it's not enough fun to make me want to wade thru html and change the font colors, I kid myself that it makes the blog "homey" but I'm not fooling anybody)

 -- Site Summary --- 
 Visits Total ....................... 52,026 
 Average per Day ................ 176 
 Average Visit Length .......... 3:09 
This Week .................... 1,229 
    Page Views Total ........... 72,236 
 Average per Day ................ 272 
              Average per Visit .............. 1.6    
This Week .................... 1,905

(If my 401K did this well I could retire instead of looking for a job!)

So in celebration  here is a repost of August 28, 2008 

Shelter Party August 30th: Under The Sun and Goin' Big

Come Join the gang at Shelter Surf Shop on Saturday August 30th at 8pm for a gathering of the tribes!

Film, Art, Music and Literature!

Here's the Lowdown:

Film and Art: Under The Sun by Cyrus Sutton.

Scope the film trailer here:

Literature: Book Signing with Kevin O'Sullivan for his book on the Hayday of Gotcha entitled "Goin' Big"

Music: TBD

Refreshments: Courtesy of The Pike Bar and Grill.

Be There or Be a quadratic shape with four equal sides!!

(not really much different that you would find in a current post, so either it been decent all along or it's showing no signs of improvement)

oh and here is my first post
(really got wordy on this one!)


23 Breaths

23 Breaths to blowup a surfmat to an acceptable level of semi inflation


Anonymous said...
Excellent 23 breaths to blow up my mat. i'll try it and let you know.

asmith said...
Never counted...

Prana- I like the direction of this blog.

23 Breaths said...
Misc responses select one that works for you

A) depends on your lungs and your mat. When your mat gets in the water the temp changes the air volume changes and you have to re evaluate your mat inflation anyway. Pay attention to how your mat rides.
B) I was reading Rob Wilson's "The Illuminatus! Trilogy" where he expounds on the "law of fives" 2+3 = 5 etc
C) numeric blog names float to the top of the list (see blatant commercialism and self promotion)
D) counting your breaths is a good practice try it for a year or two

Brian McKie said...
12 breaths for my 4gf. I did have a beer before I started so maybe it was 10.
Either way I thought that was pretty good, I guess my wife was right about me being full of hot air.


pranaglider said...
How long you been married?
Don't you know your wife is always right?
Carry on

Brian McKie said...
Well it will be 10 years in July. Seems like just the other day.
Great work on the site. I too like where you are going with the site.

Anonymous said...
From experienced Hawaiian mat surfer, Tony Lum:

Sitting on the shore, staring out to sea, preparing to return to
Mother Nature's womb. Meditating on the rhythm of the swells as they
ascend and descend in time with the measure of the ocean floor.

The melodies of the waves drown out all negative energy. The sound of
breathing reverberates everywhere.

Waves created by a far-off wind,
Mother Nature's breath. Air expelled from human lungs, breathing life into this inflatable wave-riding craft. The breath of life pulled deep and pushed long. It is meditation. Zen.

Surfing. Gliding on the liquid manifestation of cyclical energy
created by a distant breath. This is a spiritual dance that has long,
deep Polynesian roots.

Alien missionaries deemed surfing to be a sinful pastime of backward heathens, but for the Hawaiians, it was sacred. Breath was also sacred. It is the essence of life. Mana.

In Hawaiian culture, people would greet one another by standing face to face and simultaneously inhaling and exhaling each other's breath.

What would the ancients think of mat-surfing? Using the Mana of one's breath to perform the spiritual act of surfing on a wave formed by the energy of nature's own breath.

No wonder these surf mats feel so alive! There is some powerful magic going on here.

All things considered, it's funny to hear people refer to surf mats as just another pool toy. I can see how some might be offended. Perhaps it's all just nonsense. Don't spend too much time thinking about it.

Take a deep breath, let go and the surfmat will show you the way.


ramsnake said...
Just read through your blog from go to wo. Excellent reading. It has reinspired me to start my yoga practise again!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Back to the Grind

Today's favorite of the Dirk and Company photos is the one above. Graham with a massive mat quiver, deciding which brush to choose this particular Cotton's morning.

The neighbors rolling by on their groovy Schwinn Collegiate with kid carrier up front and dog side cars

The mat meet is slowly retreating in the rear view mirror of my awareness it's nice to get back into the little bubble I call my life.

Picked up a great book from the library, Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town by Cory Doctorow.  If you are familiar with Doctorow's SF writing you know he is busier that ten normal people and in addition to cranking out SF at an alarming pace, he is very active in the intellectual property debate,  co -edits the blog Boing-Boing and probably donates blood twice a week while. Generally I hate people like that but the writing is so good  I let it slide.  Down and out in the Magic Kingdom is good too.

The Queen of the Night or night blooming Cereus went off last night.  The flowers begin to open around dusk and are done by early morning.  The high point of the summer garden although the sunflowers and tomatoes would beg to differ...

One more thing

Looking at the video of the mat meet yesterday I was stoked we caught it in all it's down the line, speed run glory.  For the next one let's go somewhere hollow.  Just something to think about.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

More mat video from last Sunday

Dirk already has a rough cut of the footage he shot on Sunday. I haven't watched the whole thing yet but I really like the opening shot of Jon standing with his self made mat looking out at the break. A nice nod to the historic Hodgmen mats and the self reliant nature of surf matters.

Mat Meet: Cotton's, August 22, 2010 from Dirk Brandts on Vimeo.

Mega thanks to Dirk and family for coming down and doing a ton of work to make this available!

Full tongue extension cutback boogie!

Another great one from photographer Ken.  One of my favorites of the meet picks,  blow this one up and check the expression on Jon's face.  Think he's stoked? 

Surfsister has uploaded some of her 300 shots from the weekend here on the Yahoo matriders site.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I swiped this beautiful shot of the moon over the trestle from Nebulous Continuum.  For me it perfectly invokes that "I surfed the glass off until dark and then went home tired yet satisfied" vibe. I can feel the sand under my feet and smell the chaparral. Check out his blog

The power was out at my house most of the night.

First they Edison guys woke us up to tell us the power was going out

next there was a bunch of noise, a generator and every dog in the neighborhood with their comments.

I like to think they were trying to help " no dawg don't cut the green wire cut the red one!

At least that's what I was thinking as I lay in bed counting down the hours until I had to get up.

I live in a "all electric house of the future" which means if there is no power you are cold, hungry and tired.

So this morning although the power has been restore I've got nothing for you.

Fortunately,  it seems that EVERYONE else in cyber mat ville has posted more goodies from last Sundays meet.

Jason has released a new edit of his video from Sunday which I will call the "Directors Cut". I've got to get to the library today so I can see this in all its glory.  Have I mentioned this post that dial-up sucks?

Dirk posted some snapshots from Sunday on The Mat Movie site, so be sure you check that out. I have looked at a few and they are great.  Thanks again Dirk!

SurfMatters has hosted several posts on the gathering and has some more this morning.

Which brings me to Surf Sister

Somehow she under the mistaken impression that she is not very far along the learning curve with her mat riding.  Clearly this shot shows that she has a firm grasp of the mat both figuratively and literally!  There is nothing else to but relax, hold on and enjoy the ride.

While writing all of this, Teacher of the Year, Andy Smith has posted a nice piece on his blog Born To Lose. When I grow up I want to be Mr. Smith.  Father (of a newborn that's sleeping through the night!), Husband, Teacher, owner of an insane quiver, surfs his brains out all summer, writes a few things for the mags and have you seen his latest at Drift?   Yep, when I grow up I want to be Andy.

So that's it for today, the sun is up, the power is on and there is still swell!

It's going to be a good day!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Summers comin in and it's goin out in style

Still buzzed from the mat meet on Sunday.

The swell is still pumping and it looks like we will even have some Summer weather for a while.

Woo Hoo!

That when you add the constant drone of Back-to-School marketing in the background it all has me in a pretty good mood.

The full moon is today and those of you that like to gaze up into the night sky you will get a decent view of Mars as it passes close by.

Happy gliding to those matters using the full moon for a nighttime assault on the Bu!

Mars, the Roman god of war, the son of Juno and Jupiter, husband of Bellona, and the lover of Venus.
Mars gets around!

The next seasonal event is the Autumnal Equinox, next month on September 23 coinciding with the next full moon.

So why, in a surf blog am I going on about celestial events?


Whenever I have intense experiences, things that draw my focus to the all consuming ME I try to remember to  pay attention to something well beyond my own personal melodrama.  For me it helps keep me heading in a balanced direction.

Change is constant

Balance is key

A lot like riding a mat!

Monday, August 23, 2010

surfed out!

The cottons surf meet went down yesterday under clear a sky and great surf conditions!

Cottons photo from Patchies Hideout

Surf Sister has already posted some of the photos at her blog, Intruder in the Surf

Jason Hall has video up at Daily Bread

There is the number 23 combo plate of stills and video at Surfmatters.

I would like to thank everyone that came and shared their stoke!

To be direct and honest, (two things I usually try to avoid) without you all I would have spent the day at home, puttered around in the man cave and maybe mowed the lawn.

As it turned out, I had the time of my life, met and surfed with more matters than may have ever been assembled in one place! (The folks at the Guinness Book of World Records haven't gotten back to me yet.)
All kidding aside, a beautiful group and it was a privilege to share waves with you.

This morning I am moving slow, the sweet reward of extending my personal edges. My muscles are sore my skin is a bright shade of pink and my mind is moving slowly through the memories of the day.

A fair amount of film and video was shot at the meet, some may appear in the mat movie, other pieces will get posted on the internet and some will be retained in private collections.

I'll share what I can and link to what I find in cyberspace.

One more thing

Mat surfing is changing, growing by leaps and bounds.

Seeds planted years ago,

growing when watered by good seasons and technology advancement

dying back during the droughts of obscurity and it's difference from the norm

Mat surfing is still in it's Golden Age

a fractional portion of the total population

happy to meet others that share their passion and to share a few waves

We are living one of the great old Bruce Brown movies!

Phil Edwards slides left at Cottons. Photo by Bruce Brown

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Mat - A - Palooza

A quick post before I head out the door.

The surf looks good, check it here

Our man on point, Dirk "is the movie done yet?" Brandt's comments "We got here in time for me to ride about 6 waves before dark. Plenty of surf, good juice. Not as cold as I feared. We're going to have fun tomorrow. -Dirk"

I have consulted my magic 8 ball which reports "time to leave the computer and hit the road!" or something like that.

As a bit of consolation, for those not attending here is a link to a nice bit of blogging by neopye at lo-tech high joy 

I'll try to get some photos or at least links to photos for Monday's post

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Get Stoked Tour starts tonight at Shelter

The rickshaw from the Stoked and Broke movie 

Graham at Shelter Surf Shop has put together a three surf movie event this weekend!

The World Premier of Stoked and Broke is tonight at 9pm. Check the Shelter website for details.

Oh and a couple of us are mat surfing Cottons tomorrow morning, stop by.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Mat Meet 2010 - The countdown has started

T-minus 47 hours and counting here at mission control.

So the swell looks good, check it here

Mark Thomson has been doing his best Johnny Appleseed impression visiting surf shops and spreading the word.

The word is, "Ride a Mat!"

I have been getting emails from new matters up and down the coast stoked to go to the mat meet on Sunday.

Regular surf board sites are doing surf mat posts!

Jason Hall even posted a brief video on his site Daily Bread after Jonathan and I ran into him at HQ the other day. (Just to set the record straight, no new moves, we were just trying to adjust to the chilly water temperatures. Jason was using his 5/4/3 mill with hood.  It's August!)

So Sunday morning (morning means many things to many people) at Cottons the local mat tribe will gather and ride a few.  

I will be sending out the final full yet confusing email to those on my list later today.

But I wanted to end this post with one thought.

I love to ride the mat
but the most fun to be had at these things
is the new friends I've met.  

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Sacred Craft - IV - The rest

Stoked and Broke tour starts this Saturday at Shelter. Check out the details here.

Side shot of the Cooperfish booth, it doesn't do the boards justice. Amazing shapes and glass work!

Everyone at the show seemed to have one of these blanks. The marketing give a way that launched a thousand hand planes!

My photo skills in full effect! I manage to cut the top of one guys head off while I cut the other guy in half lengthwise.  Not bad for a Panda pic! These are the Axxe wetsuit guys, they were real cool and the wetsuits are top notch!

 Some early tri fins from Simon Anderson. Interesting to see the changes in rails and rocker over the years.

Anderson's Hawaii board pre tri fin.  Pure Brewer.

A fine quiver of Hobie's.  Either Terry Martin or Mike Hynson in the shaping bay mowing foam.

The 23 Breaths booth!  Free air to fill up your mat.

Why we are talking about mats the mat meet seems to be blowing up!  

Hope to see you there

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Sacred Craft Part III - Wood

I'm going to do my best not to use the words GOT and WOOD, in the same sentence while writing this post but no promises. Actually I just did, but a least we got that out of the way up front so it's not hanging over our heads.

The wood boards at the show were, for me, best represented by the Simmons hulls that are part of the Simmons Effect exposition.  I took a good long look at these boards no telling when I might get another chance to see them all together. 

There were balsa blanks available at the show. I believe for every blank purchased two trees are planted in what is a rapidly diminishing rain forest.

A lot of innovative minds still choose wood for primary surfboard materials.

If I had the skills, time and equipment to make one of these beauties I'd do it in an instant. 

The Mike Marshall trophy is some fine wood work in it own right

Stopped by the Wegener booth to check out his take on the craft.  Always a good sign when your first thoughts are, "Wow how neet! I'd love to ride that!!" 

The one on the right still has wax on it

Simmons had radical ideas about changing the way he surfed and we are still benefiting from the work he did back then. I think it's hard to appreciate how different his take on things were from our perspective looking back.

But if you were riding something like this, which is still a really nice board in a paddle board sort of way. A Simmons balsa chip with rounded rails, rocker, concave and two fins must have been like seeing something from the moon.

I play this game in my head about historical figures and how they would react to the things happening today.

I could see Simmons taking a quick look around La Jolla being blown away by all the development and then heading out to the garage to shape some yard possums with Burch.

I am pretty sure he would be stoked when he saw a surf mat too.

Great show and many thanks to all the people that put it together!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Sacred Craft Part II - Color

The sun is just starting to come up and with the light comes color so it seemed logical to talk about color at Sacred Craft today. (yes 23B themes are that compulsively simple)

Lots of color at the show, eye catching, draw dropping, explosions of color everywhere!

So what is a group of fins called? You know a "flock of sea gulls", a "school of fish", a "pod of whales" a "_____ of fins", My guess is at the bottom.  Read on.


Sometimes the color is all in one board, like this exotic number from "Third World Exotic Surfboards".  Looks  like it would be fun to ride.

Sometimes the colors were spread across a quiver of boards.
This shot reminds me of a group of teenagers that all agreed on what they are going to wear to the mall.

Here we have a group of boards each with their own unique bit of style color.
Good point to mention that Matt Biolos won the Tribute to the Masters shape-off.

This artist had a fabulous collection of work all done on boards. I could have taken a better shot but actually this one does capture some of the essence. No idea of the artist's name.  If you know please include it in the comments. 

While we are talking about art and artists. It was my great pleasure to meet Matt Beard at the show.  There are many really good artist that work in the plein air style. Some of them surf and it shows up in their artwork.  But there is something about Mr. Beard's work that I really like. Check out his site and if you missed his work at Sacred Craft he has a show at the Green Flash gallery in Cardiff, CA on Friday August 20.   

Back to the boards! Here is a trio of chargers by Hinds, Martin and Timpone respectively.  Ever wonder why so many boards are orange or yellow? I think its because red is difficult to work with.  You really have to use a lot of red to get the board to turn out red instead of pink and no one want's a pink board. The blue / green end of the spectrum comes out OK but you can't find your board if it's lost in the rip and you are swimming for it. That leaves orange and yellow.  As least that's what I have been told by an old time glasser. It's probably all different now a days.  Mr Martin, sorry I cut off the nose of the board in the picture.

The artist know as S/Double is back in the shaping bay. Shawn Stussy's sense of color, style and design is always amazing! Some guys get talent like that at birth, others develop it over years of hard work. I got a preference for riding variably inflatables.

The center one looks like what a mat rides like!

Mat Meet News-

It looks like everything is coming together for the mat meet this coming Sunday at Cottons.

Lots of matters confirming that they are counting the days.

Several people confirming that they are going to bring their camera equipment to the beach.

Not much of a photographer myself (obviously) but good luck to all of you hoping to practice the art and science of capturing light.

Anyone with questions, please let me know.

Oh yea, almost forgot. A group of fins ? I think it should be called a "cluster of fins".  Why?  Because it ties into the whole Sacred Craft honoring Simon Anderson thing. Now swim fins, that should be a barrel of swim fins. Definitely a barrel.