What's next? Wearing headgear or some bull shit like that?
(reality check: fire your stylus Lady Gagacock!)Style.
What is it?
I could be uber cliche right now and define what style is according to Webster and all that crap but that just ain't me, I ain't writing no thesis paper here homey (as you can tell from my grammatically correct sentences). Instead, I just wana talk a lil bit about style in and out of the water. Who's got it, who doesn't, who needs it, and who wishes they had it...
G Lopez, Mr. Pipeline, style frozen in time via water-paint acrylix
Firstly, we'll start off with style in the water.
Surfing is such a unique entity in and of itself due to the fact that it could potentially take the average person a whole year just to learn how to stand up on a board, a whole nother year just to learn how to catch the face of a wave, another year to learn how to go down the line, and another year to learn how to land one of the most basic tricks; a floater. Essentially we're talking about a total of 4 years just to become a poor average surfer. Of course there are always exceptions to the rule (I started landing air reverses on my second wave ever, but that's just me...) Ultimately, it could potentially take a total of 10 solid years for the average person to become a good average surfer. I'd consider a good average surfer as one who can consistently pull frontside and backside snaps, carves, round houses, floaters, airs, 360s, can make 1 out of 4 barrells, and is comfortable surfing such waves as Big Rock, Steamer Lane, Jalama, Rincon, Rocky's, Gas Chambers, Cloudbreak, Macaronis and other challenging intermediate waves. However, just because one can pull the previously mentioned maneuvers in their bag of tricks does not mean shit if they can't do it with style. In surfing, STYLE IS EVERYTHING!
Essentially, a surfer could be pulling air reverses, rodeo flips, frontside round houses with reverse rebounds, and floater tweaks galore but if they look like a fucking stink bug and stick their ass in the air while doing so, the tricks they pull and the barrells they get DON'T MEAN SHIT cause they're not doing them with style.
Slates, has everything in his bag of tricks, even style, that's a given!
Professional surfers belong in the utmost superior realm of surfing because not only are they able to pull the best tricks on a more than consistent basis, surf the most challenging waves in the world, and get laid pretty much every night; they do all of these things with elegance, grace, and style. Much like how artists bring their own unique vision and perspective to the art that defines them, each pro surfer brings his or her own unique way of riding a wave. Some pro surfers are known best for their croozy style and their way of connecting tricks, some are known for their aerial tactics, some are known for their innovative signature moves, some are known for having huge balls and charging the biggest waves in the World, and some are known for their barrell riding skills. There are just so many talented pro surfers out there all bringing their own style and unique touch to the table that it's really hard to pin point the best in the biz, but for now here's a stab at some of my favs...
I present you, some of The Best Style Masters In The Water:Tom Curren is the man who invented surfing with style, everyone else just emulates his steez. "He makes the wave look beautiful" - Asian dude from Alley Oop.
Watching Dan Malloy shralp when I was a grom, I was quick to realize that his surfing was smooth, polished, and just oozed steez. His surfing STILL is, it just might be a lil greener than it used to be... If you wana see an example of his uber style, just watch his part in The Show.
What comes to mind when you think of Wardo's style? I'd have to say punk rock, don't give a fuck, aggressive surfing that's constantly in yo face, that's for sure. Wardo has perfected the floater tweak and taken it to another level of steez. K-Robb flows at mach 10 speeds and throws down steez like you wouldn't believe (as you can tell my rapping career is blossoming right now!) He throws down the sickest front side grab rail reverses I've ever seen anyone do. To this day, I still have yet to see anyone pull a more perfect and clean no handed frontside 360 air like the one he did in the intro of Goodtimes.
Rob has been known as the style master for ages. His nonchalant surfing style makes it look as if he's not even trying when he's out there. With awesome lines, a lethal backside arsenal, and radical hand jives, Rob throws it down for the goof troop and leaves the regular footers in his dust! Taylor, T, T-Knox: power surfer, style master, SD legend. Taylor throws style into each insane power hack that he lays down! You can see him frequently tearing the shit outa North County lefts and carving perfect lines all over the World. Another master of the floater tweak, Taylor surfs fast as hell and throws more spray than Shamu on a Wednesday.
Joel Parkinson throws it down for the Aussie Posse down unda. If you ever watch Parko shredding, he looks so relaxed and it almost looks as if he's not even trying at all. His style is flowy, fast, and full of the top moves. It's no wonder that he was sitting pretty at the top of the CT for most of the year this year, now if he can only restake his position, there'd be a lot of stoked Aussies and even more stoked Fantasy Surfer nerdbots!
For now, those are some of the style masters in the water that have made a significant impact on surfing in the style department. Come back later to check out some more style masters out of the water (Archy? could be), and some of the surfers who's careers would be thriving if they actually had style...