A semi-regular segment celebrating the many guises and forms of that most ridiculed and underappreciated member of the surf culture, the kook.
Far more prevalent among grommets and adolescents, where he’s tolerated but never encouraged, this self-affirming youngster occasionally escapes into adulthood armed with a propensity for celebrating his own wave-riding abilities that no amount of discouragement can undo.
Intuitively aware of the high regard his surfing must be held in, no session is complete without providing friends, acquaintances and anyone else unfortunate enough not to witness it with an animated account of the waves he caught, the moves he blasted, and the uncanny amount of hoots and disbelieving expressions he elicited from his fellow surfers. Likewise, in the line-up, he’s only too willing to keep everyone updated on the shred-fest he’s conducting, with the phrase ‘Did you see me last wave?’ falling from his lips on average a dozen times a session.
Ever the performer, the shameless self-promoter is not one to shy away from bright wetsuits, bold sprays, unbuttoned floral shirts and anything else that’ll make his already eye-catching surfing stand out more. Nothing quite does it like an old-fashioned tube claim, however, and when it comes to these he favours the impassioned and energetic over anything subtle, accompanying everything from small head-dips to (God forbid) actual cover-ups with a hoot so loud and boisterous it can be heard by even the crustiest surf-ear sufferers. And while his enthusiasm for his own performance is not always appreciated by others, the shameless self-promoter rarely takes notice of criticism, understanding instead that jealousy comes with the territory for someone who rips as hard as he does.
Outside of the water, the shameless self-promoter is a must-have at any party or social event, where his natural gift for storytelling often reaches all-time highs with the assistance of alcohol. In fact, it’s not unusual for him to regale fellow surfers and non-surfers alike for hours at a time with tales of huge waves, hard-core shredding, and other surf-related triumphs all starring yours truly. And while his audience may fluctuate between those who walk away immediately and those who are too inebriated to move, everyone is treated to the same lively retellings no matter how much looking around, yawning or passing out they do.
As enjoyable as these get-togethers are, though, the shameless self-promoter knows that his true place is in the ocean, where his abilities can be appreciated in their most natural element. And lately that appreciation seems to be getting stronger and stronger, with most surfers preferring to give him a wide berth in the line-up rather than risk getting in the way of the incredible shredding he’s doing. In fact, a lot of people even seem to be leaving the water these days when he paddles out, no doubt so they can watch from the car park without missing a single ride. And that’s great and all, but as a natural born entertainer he would way rather feed off their stoke up close, where he can hear them whispering and see the awe in their faces.
Oh well, not to worry, they’re free to view the show from wherever suits them, and besides, he always catches up with his fans later to make sure they enjoyed it.