/*23 Breaths: August 2011*/

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Cottons - Like we did last summer

So with a good 200 degree swell in the water we are heading to Cottons on Sunday for another mat meet.

Be there early, you'll miss some traffic.

Parking is the same as Trestles, you walk down the same path just turn right instead of left when you get to the beach. You can't miss it.

The forecast calls for decent surf so it should be fun. Low tide is at 8:07 am at 2.7 feet which will be good.

If you have questions leave them in the comments section. 

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


I watched a bit of this over the weekend live over the internets

I laughed out loud when both of the commentators agreed that "there was a little bit of the nose of the board sticking out on that last one" so it couldn't be a high scoring ride, maybe a 4.0

Monday, August 29, 2011

River of Time

I was out and about this weekend

I try to celebrate the same holidays as everyone else

just not on the same days exactly.

Next weekend when everyone else is hell bent on making the most of the "Last Days of Summer", I will already have that one in the books and can enjoy my day off in peace.  Low tech time travel I grant you but one does what one can.

(some rumbling in the FB underground about a mat meet next weekend but more about that later)

So I was floating about in the local designated surfing area, still clothed in my full suit, wondering why the water never really warmed up this year. I have heard the term "bathwater" tossed about a few times but then  always followed up by, "but that was last week it's dropped a lot since then".  Usually, by this time in the season, we usually have had a consistent 68-70 degree water for a while. It's true that the weather has been mild but certainly much warmer than last year.

But the change of season is coming.  Fall has been my favorite season for a while now. Summer used to be. I had the whole think off and lounged around the beach. What's not to love? Now it's definitely fall. The tourists develop some sort of seasonal amnesia and forget about the beach. While the crowds thin out, the  chances  of  combo swells with just a tad of off shore breeze increase ten fold. You gonna love the fall!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Against the Day

400 pages in and I have already had to renew the loan from the library once.

Pynchon's work is like a dense rich meal and I just can't seem to read 100 pages at a crack like I do with most things.

Since I have already read Vineland, Inherent Vice, The Crying Lot of 49 and took a stab at Gravity's Rainbow I know I will finish this and start on GR again.

It is an interesting read and a great exercise program. 


Holding a 1000 page book at my narrow acceptable focal length.

No yoga butt for me.

Heavy book reader's forearms is the new black. 

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Friday, August 26, 2011

Home Sweet Home

I saw this over at Lloyd's blog.

While it is or was the Mount Tamalpais fire lookout station I thought it would make the perfect house for a surfer.

Big enough to contain the necessities but small enough to keep the clutter from collecting and to discourage long term guests.

Picture it perched on a elevation above the beach with a 360 degree view of pristine coastline.

Maybe grow some vegetables out back by the shed.

Maybe not the classic surf shack

Which is more some place to hang up the fins and rest up between sets.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


The coconut wireless is all a chatter about the big swell hitting Teahupoo today

(well that and Steve Jobs)

I saw this bit of video the other day

A different perspective on Teahupoo I hadn't seen before

Looks like fun

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

of course what I meant by that was

In the spirit, style and fade right go left gyrations of the upcoming election season

Let me rephrase yesterdays post.

When I encouraged people on the US East Coast to be careful regarding the approaching hurricane

of course what I meant by that was,

 watch out for the earthquake!

I hope you all are safe and sound.

Now look out for the hurricane!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Be careful out there

I know these hurricanes can light up the coast and the pre storm surf can be epic.

But every time I see a forecast like this I think to my self OMG and worry about the people, pets, wildlife, ecosystems that may not get to safety in time.

Monday, August 22, 2011

More Summer Music

Surfer boys & girls, Lorne, 1975 © Rennie Ellis Photographic Archive

TuskedBeast contributed the insightful theory that "summer music" is more of a shared experience than a calendar phenomena.

So very true and obvious once someone points it out.

I did some searching with the way-back machine and came up some Billboard hits for the time period in question.

1. Love Will Keep Us Together, The Captain and Tennille
2. Rhinestone Cowboy, Glen Campbell
3. Philadelphia Freedom, Elton John
4. Before the Next Teardrop Falls, Freddy Fender
5. My Eyes Adored You, Frankie Valli
6. Shining Star, Wind and Fire
7. Fame, David Bowie
8. Laughter In the Rain, Neil Sedaka
9. One of These Nights, Eagles
10. Thank God I'm a Country Boy, John Denver
11. Jive Talkin', The Bee Gees
12. The Best of My Love, The Eagles
13. Lovin' You, Minnie Riperton
14. Kung Fu Fighting, Carl Douglas
15. Black Water, The Doobie Brothers
16. The Ballroom Blitz, Sweet
17. (Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song, B.J. Thomas
18. He Don't Love You (Like I Love You), Tony Orlando and Dawn
19. At Seventeen, Janis Ian
20. Pick Up the Pieces, The Average White Band
21. The Hustle, Van McCoy and The Soul City Symphony
22. Lady Marmalade, Labelle
23. Why Can't We Be Friends, War

I think this is firm support for the "shared experience" theory because no one would pick this lot out on their own.

Although I have to admit I have always been a big fan of Kung Fu Fighting

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Down is where I let you

I said the magic incantations

I threw silver upon the waters

I would have burnt a surfboard in a bonfire as a surf sacrifice

(but that's just stupid!)

Still when I checked out the surf this morning

It was small

and windy

With the right attitude

and a mat

it could have been fun

But I didn't have the one and didn't what to blow up the other.

Until next time

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Summer Music

(If grown men in short shorts offend you, and I can see where it might, then just click on out of here now and save both of us the grief)

I have been meaning to do a "music of summer" post since last spring but the more I pondered just what makes good summer music the more it just seems totally subjective.

I can't recall anything particular good from my youth that I can identify as summer music.  It was a dry period after all the good stuff from the 60's was over. The "Disco Era" music of the time I still hate with a passion that burns like a thousand suns. I really do feel I was robbed of part of a decent youth. But enough about that.

Posting up something from the Beach Boys is just too easy. It's not that the Beach Boys don't have musical merit it's just that their best stuff never got air play and so they are forced by fans and promoters to sing "Surfer Girl".  Forever.

This one came on the radio the other day and struck me as maybe one top 10 classic summer song

Painfully Pop? Certainly.

If I had one tenth of one percent of the royalties this one song brought in I could buy and island and retire for life.

The song can have a saccharine sweetness that if listened to without imbibing in a libation of some sort can make the song almost unbearable. (too much mix and not enough tequila?)

But if it comes on the radio or better yet, if you hear it live and it matches the groove you are in.

You suddenly find yourself standing on your chair singing along

and that's what summer music is all about.

*Bonus track only because I like lap steel guitar


Friday, August 19, 2011

Not Deja Vu we really are doing it again!

This Sunday we are going to meet at the south end of Bolsa Chica state park this time, early (6:30) to check conditions, drink coffee, tell lies and maybe surf a little.

Generally speaking a short hike over the bridge to the south is just the thing to wake your body and deliver you to slightly less crowded waters.

The swell(s) look more promising that earlier in the week and while it won't be triple-over-head, the forecast calls for two small south swells and some nw swell as well!

Come and try out all the new gear you picked up at Shelter on Saturday!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Mat Meet / Shelter Swap

So before the mat meet on Sunday you can cruse up to Shelter in Long Beach.

I spoke to Graham and he told me he has a large stash of single fins.

So if you need a fin, a new used standup or have misc surf stuff to sell or trade head over to Shelter this Sunday.

If the ground swell of actual swell was as large as the ground swell of support for another Bolsa mat meet we could be expecting over head sets.

But the forecast has gone from flat to 1-2 which if you are on a mat IS over head.

So it looks like we meet at again. More details tomorrow.

SoCal Weather - today should be the last hot day. Friday we lose 5 degrees off the daytime highs and another 5 as we enter the weekend. 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Deja Vu Mat Meet

Since several people have mentioned that they would like to give Bolsa another go we are collectively kicking around the idea of another mat meet next Sunday.

I have given the code name deja vu to this mat meet.

Either it was that or "Same mat time same mat station" but a quick show of hands, how many of you were alive or watched enough Batman reruns to remember that signoff?

I thought so.

So deja vu it is!

Other than the whole naming thing (which is after all the most important thing) we have the matter of the surf.

Now as you all know surf comes and surf goes and if you have nothing but time on your hands the surf always comes back.

But the current forecasts don't look good for Sunday.  Check it here 

I don't remember it exactly but it was something like,  The surf will be Flat! with flat sets, flat pick and choose flat corners.  Something like that, so we have that going on.

There is a bit of tropical activity which can show up suddenly, like a unannounced guest from out of town, but also like the aforementioned guest you can never really depend on these things to do what you want.

So there you have it, a definite maybe with a side order of we'll see.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Legend of Spyder Wills

Pro Body surfer, contriubuting photograper on most if not all of the great movies of the era, Paipo rider and Frisbee master

Ladies and Gentlemen

Spyder Wills

Spider Wills from Z Weyand on Vimeo.

Some of his work with Greg Weaver

Maybe some skateboarding,

Thanks to Mateo for jogging my memory

Monday, August 15, 2011

Bolsa Chica Surfmeet Recap

The Bolsa Chica mat meet when off yesterday in the classic fashion we have come to expect of these events.

Photo by Ken Samuels

Attendance - Everyone that said they were coming made the show. I think the final count of matters was 8 give or take the people I'm not recalling at the early hour I'm writing this post (5:23 am Monday)

New friends - Pete from the South Bay made it down for this event after missing the last couple. Super stoked, the proud owner of not only a nice board quiver but PY has taken advantage of one of Paul's get three mat deals. Looks like he is into the mats for the long haul and we will be seeing him at the future events.

Classic summer surf conditions - Lite overcast in the morning burning off to blue skys around noon. Overnight we lost one South West swell and traded it for another, slightly steeper one. "You should have been here yesterday" and what's more summer than that. Not to say that it was flat, just not as peaky as Saturday, but the pushing tide present ample opportunity to grab some good ones outside.

Ken was there to record the fun for posterity. Of course I forgot to bring my point and shoot to record any interesting beach / parking lot action. But just as well.  While I am on the topic I would like to say "thank you" to Ken for recording our antics and nominate him for "mat rider of the year", the sports highest honor.

You can find all the photos at Surfmatters and on FaceBook in the "In Greenough We Trust" group.

Awesome display of Natures power - California Brown Pelicans were a normal part of the local ecosystem as the name suggests. Sadly they were completely wiped out of the local waters but the use of the pesticide DDT. Slowly the poison has leached out of the food chain over the last few decades and the pelicans are making a come back. We were honored by a pod of pelicans putting on a fishing demo in the surf line. Dozens, too many for me to count really, along with the rest of the local sea birds looking for scraps worked their way up the coast chasing a school of fish. It was an amazing sight, and for me, it was the highlight of a very fine day.

Thanks for everyone for coming!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Mat meet on Sunday at Bolsa

We are going to meet at Tower 21 early (6:30) to check conditions, drink coffee, tell lies and maybe surf a little.

The swell(s) look promising and the tide is rising thru the morning.

The State beach has all the amenities so bring the family.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Tin Can Beach

They were open with their littering at Tin Can Beach

The nickname for a 3½-mile stretch of sand just north of Huntington Beach, Tin Can Beach reached the heights of trashiness in the 1940s and '50s when it was the sometime domain of hobos, drinkers, free spirits and vacationers.

March 21, 2011|Steve Harvey | Only in L.A
California's coastline is full of colorfully named strands like Seal Beach, Pismo Beach and Muscle Beach. However, Tin Can Beach — a wacky monument to littering — is just a memory.
The nickname for a 3½-mile stretch of sand just north of Huntington Beach, Tin Can Beach reached the heights of trashiness in the 1940s and '50s when it was the sometime domain of hobos, drinkers, free spirits and vacationers.
They built cardboard shacks, erected tents and thought nothing of tossing used cans, bottles, paper plates and other debris to the ground.
Their symbol was an assemblage of more than 100 rusting beer containers that spelled out Tin Can Beach in the sand.
"This is the last frontier, the last place a man can camp free in these parts," barefooted Ray Torrey, the self-appointed mayor of Tin Can Beach, proclaimed one August afternoon in 1956.
"I've been coming down here since 1927," he said as he sipped a beer in his cardboard castle. "Got a banjo and we sit around a fire at night and sing."
Some residents from the East seemed to have ended up at Tin Can Beach because they couldn't go any farther west.
"I'm out of a job," one of the mayor's constituents, a Dover, N.H., man, said as he lay in the sun, surrounded by hundreds of beer cans. "This is a cheap place to live."
The dwellers fished in the surf and bathed in the ocean. Gasoline stations on Pacific Coast Highway took care of other needs.
And the authorities largely ignored them because the beach was private property, belonging to more than 200 absentee owners who had acquired parcels during an oil boom in the 1920s. By 1956, many of them had "become wealthy and disappeared," The Times said.
In the meantime, the property was leased by the Signal Oil and Gas Co., which occasionally cleaned up the debris just to keep the mounds of cans from blocking the view of the ocean from PCH.
Some of the inhabitants were more conscientious than the litterbugs, flocking to the beach to find relief from the sun in that era before air conditioning.
"It was not uncommon for people to go and stay for a week or two at a time," Ed Sweeny recalled on a Huntington Beach website. "Our families, 20 to 30 members, would go during the summer when it was so hot in the Inland Valley, and pitch Army tents. The men would go off to work every day and come back to the beach afterward. The adults would sleep in the tents on cots and the kids would sleep out under the stars.... We would have campfires every night.... It was so much fun."
Of course, not all was idyllic at Tin Can Beach.
Some children would suffer cuts on "their feet from all the tin can lids buried in the sand," Sweeny said.
Though people didn't seem to fear violent crime in those days, theft was not unknown. An unemployed carpenter named Smith told The Times in 1954 that some of his tools had been stolen, prompting him to devise a makeshift burglar alarm: a marble in a milk bottle hung on his front door.
And, Smith added, he was sometimes awakened by people tearing timbers from his walls to use as kindling for beach fires. (Nothing more annoying than having your house torn down by the neighbors.)
The weather could also be a nuisance, since building standards were somewhat lax. Chuck Taylor of El Monte complained that no sooner had he constructed his driftwood manor than the wind started blowing and the roof came off.
By 1956, Tin Can Beach was beginning to face a problem that would become familiar in Southern California: congestion.
"I wish you wouldn't publicize this place," the mayor told The Times. "Too many people come down here now. I wish we had beer cans piled a foot high to keep them out."
A lot of Orange Countians weren't wild about people coming to Tin Can Beach, either. They considered it an eyesore and appealed to the state Legislature to buy it.
It took several years, but eventually the numerous owners of the property, or their next of kin, were located. The state acquired the site for $1 million, renamed it Bolsa Chica State Beach and removed the cans, including the ones that spelled out Tin Can Beach.
Nowadays, sleeping overnight on the sand is forbidden. "NO tent camping," a beach website warns, as though in fear of some old-time residents returning. Owners of recreational vehicles can sleep in the parking lots, but it's not free. Fees range from $50 to $65 per night.
No vestige of Tin Can Beach survives. A reporter walking on the pristine sand between two lifeguard stations on Friday couldn't find a single discarded beer can.
And the "Bolsa Chica State Beach" sign at the entrance is made of concrete, not tin.

Sunday dawn patrol be there or be square

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Surf Movie Tonight

Manufacturing Stoke is continuing its string of sold out shows and is playing tonight 

at the OC Tavern in San Clemente

Doors open at 7pm and the screening is at 8pm

Go to the Manufacturing Stoke site to buy tickets and get more information.

Manufacturing Stoke is an introspective look into the surfing culture’s struggle to be beneficial unto itself, a tapestry of both influential and eclectic members of the surfing community that are constantly striving for positive change

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Sight Sound

SIGHT|SOUND from High Seas Films on Vimeo.

Mikey DeTemple will be premiering his new film SIGHT/SOUND this Friday at Hurley HQ. 

This is the West Coast premiere of the film.  

Friday, August 12th, 7PM-10PM

Hurley HQ, 1945 Placentia Ave, Costa Mesa, CA 92627

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

breathing in

I take a breath

but really the breath takes me

Like an angler reaching down and lifting his catch up

by the gills

pulling it from

one partial view of the universe

to another one

too wet

too airy

who can tell

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Sunday walk around the garden

The sun flowers were late blooming this year but they were worth it.

Gave away some cutting of the night blooming Cerius this year and was rewarded with three batches of blooms. This last one will have forty flowers. 
Probably a lesson there about getting back ten times what you share and give away.

Nice thing about growing oranges in Orange County, there is always something to snack on.

Orange blossoms smell so good I would grow the tree just for those. 

The garden is guarded by a really cranky cat.

The apple tree is a dependable producer. By this time of the season the apples are sweeter. My wife makes a mean apple pie and I have been meaning to try the Mateo apple sauce

The sunflower leaves do this wonderful color change starting in late summer.

If bees had pinup posters on the bedroom walls in the hive it would look like this.
close up of the heart of a sunflower.

Each pollinated flower produces a seed. The local squirrels are starting their count down.

 I would like to take create for taking "artistically angled" shots of the sunflowers. The truth is I'm short and they are very tall.

Either they are some really big cherry tomatoes or there are pumpkins growing in with the tomato bushes

The garden bear on patrol

Happy Anniversary to my wonderful wife Morgan!
Without her I would be living in a van down by the river eating a steady diet of government cheese.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Random US Open thoughts

I've been watching the US Open on the local cable channel.

Thru the lack of waves

Thru the sudden appearance of wave due to Hurricane Eugene.

A couple of things I noticed in no order of importance

  • If you are going to show me women's surfing please show me women surfing
If you are just going to show me close ups of some girl's butt while she paddles out let's just save that for the bikini contest (do they still have those?) so I can just skip it. Not that I don't appreciate the beauty of the female form but it's a SURFING contest. (yes two words that don't go together well but let's just go with the surfing it OKAY?)

  • If progressive surfing is just air moves then just change the name to the US Open of Skateboarding
I like to watch skateboarding or snowboarding for that matter. If progressive surfer can't come up with something better that to recycle skateboarding airs than lets just move the whole deal to a well built half pipe and clear the water.  On the other hand what else do you do with a closed out Huntington dumper but punt?

  • I like a good tshirt. But that the tshirt and trunks companies run surfing is not only sad but the reason there is so many things wrong with surfing as it is commonly perceived. 
Surfing is ultimately about any one persons relationship with the ocean. If they ride a glass slipper, a hull, a pig, a mat, a twin fin, a log, a hand plane or just body surf naked. Contests have nothing to do with surfing.  Hurley, Quiksilver, Nike, if you want to impress the heck out of me, have your stable of "pro surfers" leave their egos on the sand (no hiding in the contestants and VIPs only condo on the beach) and spend the week teaching some under privileged kids about the water. Pass on some Aloha. I would be very impressed (heck I would every volunteer to carry the boards from the van to the beach and back)

  • If busting your fins out on every wave is the apex of surfing performance why not ride a craft with no fins to begin with? 
I'm just sayin'.

  • While I'm taking about tired moves that thing you do to make it from the outside to the inside, the "Huntington Hop"? Please stop that immediately. If you are a professional come up with something else to do. If you  look up ugly in the dictionary, I pretty sure it shows some poor shumuck doing the Huntington Hop.
You might look at boards without such exaggerated rocker that they can trim. If you haven't heard of the word "trim" or the idea of trim I can suggest several good movies and some time well spent on a single fin.

I know contests aren't going away. I'm just providing valuable marketing feedback as to the preferences of  Males between 23 and 200 that spend in excess of 2 dollars a year on new action sport apparel. You are just trying to increase market share. It's just business. I understand.

Friday, August 5, 2011


The US Open happens once a year.

The date is decided at least a year in advance and conditions like these are at the root of the "Dream Tour".

Surf conditions this weekend are forecast to pickup, although the swell angle may leave HB walled up.

But in this economy you will get a lot of takers at a chance for the 100,000 dollar prize money.

check out Manufacturing Stoke

Update! Swell arrived! Woohoo!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Shark Week

Once again it's "Shark Week" on the Discover Channel.

The drinking game above should help with the terror.

You won't last 10 minutes until you are stewed to the gills.

I for one, am just thankful for the people that stay out of the water because of "Shark Week"

I am also thankful for the sharks themselves, as they taste great in a little garlic and butter.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

I was misinformed

It seems that there is a substantial chunk of Summer left
so continue on
as you were.

As it turns out there is quite a bit to do in the surf world

Museum Exhibit -

The California Surf Museum in Oceanside currently has an exhibit entitled "Transitional Thinking: A Short Story 1966-1972". I haven't been yet but part of the exhibit includes a copy of Greenough's kneeboard Velo.  Follow the link for more details.

I need to credit Cher for posting some great pics on Facebook and for the tip on this one.

Gallery Exhibit -

If people keep yelling "Eureka" at you when you ask what town you are in, and it doesn't seem strange, then you are in the right place to enjoy some fine art work at the Sewell Gallery in Eureka Ca. Follow the link to the Beard Art Site from more information.

Surf Report -

From the usual sources - it seems that the surf is up (a bit) and the wind is down (hurrah).

If you could ride one for me a would be beholden to ya.

Virtual News -

The Virtual Premiere of  Cyrus Sutton's latest movie "Under the Sun"

So here is the deal, you sign up and pay your dough then watch the movie online between 8/5 and 8/7.
How easy as that!

One last thing

Why do they call these the "dog days" of summer?  My dog has been miserable the last few nights. I know this because she has explained it to me in great detail long into the night. Some people question that I talk to my dog. It's true that she is more the "good listener" type, but when appropriate she will stop me in mid sentence to interject an insightful thought or two.  Just sayin'

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

hurricanes, back to school ads and thicker mugs

Eugene! You get in the window this instant!

(I don't know I just felt like writing that)

Eugene here, having rounded the corner, may turn our way for a moment.

The water has been a tad chilly this summer so that will probably suck the life out of poor Eugene.

The slow parade of tropical depressions are another indicator of late summer.

I saw, they have been going for a while but this one just registered on me, my very first BACK-TO-SCHOOL sale ad yesterday, the definitive indicator of the end of summer.  Nothing kills your summer buzz like a back to school sale. It drives a knife thru the very heart of summer and twists.

Oh and I used the winter mug for my tea this morning. It's thicker walls keep the tea warmer longer.

Yep, that's it, hurricanes, back to school ads and thicker mugs. Summer's over.

I have to get new booties.

Monday, August 1, 2011

There is something about the light

Dunfanaghy Photos
This photo of Dunfanaghy is courtesy of TripAdvisor

nice weekend despite a enough wind to junk up the surf from daylight to sunset

I've used up the summers allocation of vacation days (3)

So even though the summer doesn't end officially (September 23)

or unofficially (Labor Day September 5) until later

there is something about the light in the afternoon that tells me the end of the season is near.

I know that the summer contests are still raging on, summer beach traffic is insane and there is enough monsoonal moisture in Southern Cal to make things a tad stuffy (although I did enjoy the sprinkles we had yesterday and I hear the lighting in the mountains and deserts was spectacular!)

The light thing is not anything I could capture with a camera

but still

fall is on its way

and I couldn't be happier