Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Someone recently asked us to review our Summers. This is my review of my 40th summer here.

Though not as eloquent as my compadres, I too had a Summer.... Did i surf? Or more pointedly, did I go surfing, since though one may surf, the act of going surfing can easily eclipse the result.

Yes, I did go surfing. A couple of those times were in the ocean as well.

When we think of surfing in the traditional sense, well, I have not had this much consecutive dry time since that stint I did in the Turkish prison. However when looked at from the "one world" perspective, a broader sense of what "going surfing" can mean, explorations relationship development, both internal, and external, I surfed my @ss off.

There was the the cool mornings and crisp evenings spent hiking about in the arid canyons and ponderosa treelines. Delving deeply into solitude or not.

There were evenings of late sunsets, running around in my truck with pizzas almost as tempting as the stale aroma it would leave waiting for me the next morning on my way to my real job.

There was a few thousand miles of rubber slowly removed in a brash display "up yours". Beer would flow (nearby anyway since we all know I hardly drink), grass would be blown, and oil burned.

My daughter was living a near jet-set life, always on the move. Hardly spending a day or two between destinations of great promise.

Plans were made and some came to pass. Including the morning we awoke with damp tents and as predicted, 3 out of 4 swore off camping forever.

The two times I made it to the ocean, she did not disappoint me, nor i her. We would dance, and though there was not much swooning, we both flirted knowing it really meant more than what it appeared.

The future was a huge idea. the present was spent on re-hashing what my future would look like. The shape it would take. The rekindling of old dreams once sold out and when found affable, dismissed along with the bitterness that I carried.

There was music, glorious music. sitting in awe of the raw talent of others, enjoy my forays into their world, and hardly ever being laughed into submission.

I said "so long" to some friends, one of which truly mattered. And I pray that I will have a long life of returning there.

Laughter, there was a lot of laughter.

And now Fall is upon us, or soon will be. I cannot help it. In my adult life, the giddiness of the approaching summer, the last day of school, has been replaced with the joy of falling leaves, early sunsets, and damp woods.

It seems fitting to embrace this natural change, since my Summer was spent in the idea of newness and wonder, so should the rest of my life.

Bring it.

Monday, September 17, 2007


I want to be awash in the crystal blue and warm waters of my memories.

I want to breathe with clean lungs.

I want to run, just run....

At times I wonder if these things are just things I will not know again.

Like some junkie trying to regain the high of his yesterdays.

I want to have the warm water cascade over my tanned back.

Stand beneath the cool shower and feel the water remove the taste of salt from my lips.

I want to run.Just run.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Sandy feet

For the first time in 14 years, I bought a pair of baggies.

For those of you that are maladjusted, baggies are boardshorts...or...the baggy shorts one would wear while surfing.

They are soft, black, and well....baggy.

On my way home from Gorge Performance I found myself drifting.
Where I live, where I surf, the baggies I bought are about completely useless. However they immediately reminded me of warm waters.
For a moment or two, I forgot where I was.

I dismissed the gray clouds and cooler temperatures, I even got excited about surfing tomorrow, until I remembered the 4 mil wetsuit hanging in my shower.

No, there will be no need for these until I depart.

I have not surfed warm water in 14 years.

That crystal blue warmth.

The sun on my bare back.

I know that my white ass is going to get fried where I am going, and I look forward to it.

I wonder what it will be like to come home after that week.

I wonder what it will be like to have my toes in that warm sand again.

The child in me screams for it.

The man inside me screams for it.

I wonder if I am leaving home, or leaving to go home.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

I am not a biker

I am not a biker.I ride a motorcycle, yet I am not a biker.I am not core.I have never been in a bar brawl, but have taken my beatings just the same.I ride a Harley, and I ride it like I stole it. And when I get home, I polish every inch of it.I do not have an old lady. I have a girlfriend.She does not ride on the back of my FXDBI, she rides her own BMC bobber 88.I do not wear denim shirts with the sleeves torn off, However I do live my life in my 501's.I feel at home in my steel toe boots, but love running around in my flip flops.I have ink, but there are no skulls or other insignia you would recognize.I have friends that ride, but I wear no patches.I would not mind going to Sturgis, if it was not for the long ass ride to get there.I have no problems with trailering our bikes.I do not ride my bike to work. There is no place to put my Starbucks cup.I like going to biker bars, as long as they serve good beer. The kind of beer you could never buy in a can.My girlfriend could suck start my Dyna, but is way too much of a lady to ever let you know that in public.See, I am so very many things that I do not have the time to prove to you, or anyone else, how I am more core than others. Quite honestly, I am not nearly as core as you would think if you met me.Surfing, hunting, writing, playing music...these are things that take up my time.I could not honestly tell you the difference between a pan head and a shovelhead. However I do know a basket case when I see one.No, I am not a biker. but then again, I don;t have to be one either.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

The Creek in January

The creek had puked enough in recent history to set up the sand bar. depositing that fine granular wonder in such a precise way that when the swell wrapped into it, it was right of near Malibu quality and about head high.

We staved off the cold morning with a double helping of pancakes and eggs, sloshed some horribly strong coffee into our near frosted mugs and drove to the confluence of the big blue and this magical set up.

There were 4 guys in the water when we got there and three came in while we were suiting up. A couple Surfrider guys we had been running into lately and a retired surf shop owner.
We chatted as we readied and they unreadied.

Another guy pulled up and made haste to get in the water. I would later find out he was a crab fisherman and this would be his first session since the opening of the season in early December.
By the time we made it into the line up this made four guys in the water.

The paddle out was easy. One lunge off the rocks and a head dip followed by a few hundred yards of dry hair/hood paddling.

There was frost on the sand still, in spite of the sun being in full bloom by this later hour of the morning.

The waves would wrap in and there was a narrow take off area centered around a crab buoy that was certainly attached to a pot that had gone astray.

If you were a yard too deep, you would not make it around the lip, but even in the right spot it had the feel of instant closeout. One of those leaps of faith situations on each wave.

Once down the face and turning from the bottom you could see the right line up for hundreds of yards.

This lasted for many waves, but relatively short.

Tide fluctuations here are exaggerated and all the breaks change more rapidly than most places I have known.

What was a wonderful long and nearly flawless right, was soon a cacophony of mostly closed out sections and beat downs across the rocks inside.

But for that short hour and a half, it was pure bliss.

Nothing but smiles.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007


allurement, ambuscade, ambush, artifice, bait, booby trap, come-on, conspiracy, deadfall, deception, decoy, device, dragnet, enticement, feint, gambit, gin, hook, intrigue, inveiglement, lasso, lure, machination, maneuver, net, noose, pit, pitfall, plot, ploy, prank, quagmire, quicksand, ruse, seducement, snag, snare, stratagem, subterfuge, temptation, wile

God damn it!

As if it could be any more damned that it already is.

Since I was 14 when I first laid my eyes upon it, I have never lived any further from the Ocean than I do now.

Twenty six years.

My relationships, my jobs, my disposition, my goals and aspirations, my dreams, all of them...every damn thing in my life, affected by this one thing.

We kid ourselves about being free.

We are not free.

I am not free.

I could be living in a wooded wonderland, carving out a simple and rich existence, playing bass in my brother's blue grass/folkabilly scene, hunting moose, deer, and elk.

But I cannot.

I could be riding fee across the open land upon a growling machine, sleeping under stars, and delving into my ideas of social studies, documenting it all for whomever would give a crap to know it.

But I cannot.

I passed on a job that would have almost doubled my income.

Why? Because it was in Utah.

I hardly even surf. when I do, I do, however the frequency is not as fiery as it once was, but we all know it will come back.

Yet there are boards on my wall, in my bedroom, leaning against the wall off the kitchen. There is a wet suit hanging over my bedroom door. There is sand in my truck carpets.

When I close my eyes I can see many things and I enjoy the beauty, the love, the absurdity in each of the images that I replay to myself. But when I lie in the darkness and night is clutching at me, it is those waves that haunt me and make my heart skip.

Freedom? Please, we have no idea what that is.

Marriage holds no candle to the bounds we already know.

If you are one of us, you know what I am saying, if you doubt it, you will never be one of us.

Good for you. Save yourself, your future, your children, your relationships, your mind....your soul.


Be free.

I cannot.

The Trap has got me.

And there is no methadone.