Sunday, December 03, 2006

Treading water - losing the stoke

Little Miss N and her friend from Encinitas stopped by before their flight out of LAX to El Salvador. (Surf trip or kidnapping?) We ended up at Guy Okazaki's place. He's going to shape her another board -- a whole two inches shorter than the slew of other Okazaki boards she has! I write this with some amount of sarcasm because, even though I know gigantic differences in performance are measured in fractions of inches on boards, for as long as I've known her, she's been riding an Okazaki alien shape that's 6'8", about 20" wide with a round pin tail. She has had at least three of these boards since I've known her. She's found her niche and she's not deviating.

Don't get me wrong. I love the alien shape. I have one myself. I also admire his performance longboards and am playing around with the idea of getting one to replace Doc. It's just... I wonder what's the purpose of having so many of such similar boards?

While chatting with Guy, we met a man whose name Guy says is part of the surfing lore of the Dogtown days and someone who made a name for himself surfing in Hawaii. "But he quit surfing a long time ago." I wondered why. "Just got bored one day and quit."

I'm intrigued by this. I'm intrigued because it feels like there has to be a good story behind it, and I'm intrigued because I can almost buy Guy's explanation. There's no way my name is anywhere near being remembered in the annals of surfing history, but I have lately been feeling a loss of the stoke and I wonder that it might be possible that I could "get bored one day and quit."

It's probably nothing. It's probably that I have other commitments in my life that are taking a more prominent place right now. It's probably that I'm tired of my safe, crappy beach break with all the fantastic friends. Since I'm pulled in other directions, I have less time to surf. So when I do surf, I don't explore and hunt down good surf, I go to see my friends in the water who I miss seeing every day. I socialize, I make jokes, I catch a wave or two.

I guess I'm just mulling these thoughts. Treading water right now. It's just strange to think how I've become more casual about surfing when I remember a time when I couldn't imagine living landlocked because I had to be in the water every day.

6 comments:

Whiffleboy said...

Surfing for me can be summed up simply: The more I do it, the more I need it. My own personal evidence leads me to believe the exact opposite applies as well.

Anonymous said...

I don't think your losing the stoke, your just in a ebb and flow cycle, replenishing for the next round, you'll see.

dave rich said...

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You cannot just let it go that easily! Cmon! Haha, I think that possibly I would have more of a reason to quit than you, hell just swing into
www.g-townsurf.com and see all you need to see, its like that 75% of the time!

No seriously though, your not losing the stoke. Just like patch said, its a cycle. You mentioned you have a lot of things going on to sidetrack you. One good go out, that one wave, and you know you will be hooked again. Trust me, if I followed through with my first thoughts with surfing, I would have quit by now, and broken a TON of boards. :)

Anonymous said...

One less head in the water.

reverb said...

...normally the people dont understand the concept of the quiver...

...may be you need other limits to push...

Anonymous said...

My days of "hunting down the surf" have been passing too... now I dont think I am lossing my stoke, I this its because I just had twins and its just easier to walk across the highway and surf close to home.
My Dad is 52 and he still goes out almost everyday.