No pictures for this post, unfortunately... and, it has nothing whatsoever to do with surfing, horticulture, landscaping at all. More to do with the spirituality of coping with less than ideal life conditions, helpful for everyone at times hopefully.
I was talking with a friend the other day about the crappy weather and he said "effin LIQUID SUNSHINE!" He did not use my more polite F-word alternative, he was full bore mad.
I asked him what 'Liquid Sunshine' was, never heard that phrase before. He proceeded to tell me where he was exposed to the brighter philosophical side of shitty rainy weather.
He had paid an "Arm and a Leg" (pun intended) for the pleasure of golfing at an awesome golf course while on vacation and it started to rain like hell. He animatedly told me what he started swearing at the clouds, the words that he had used and the level of emotions behind his swearing.
The caddy who was schlepping two bags around without a cart was Jamaican with a thick island accent and had lost one of his arms somehow. My friend never got around to finding out how, thinking it's impolite to ask. Anyway, the dude overcame his handicap and still managed to schlepp for the tourists with an amicable attitude and friendly smile.
When this one-armed caddy saw my friend (let's call him Dave (his name really is Dave)) going ballistic with veins in his neck about to pop swearing at the clouds for what was an everyday Jamaican weather event, he said "Ya, Maaan, What Yuu soo maaad abouuut?"
"I paid an arm and a leg to golf at this #*!^ing GD beautiful place and it's F***ing raining like a *#^@%!!!" That's what I'm so mad about!
The caddy calmly and cooly said to "Dave" "Yo Maaan, That's not Rain, that's Liquid Sunshine! It visits every day here, maan, good for you, good luck for those it falls on!"
That phrase stuck with Dave, and now when rain conjures up swearing emotions, he remembers the unnamed one armed cool golf caddy from Jamaica and calms down to some degree.
That caddy also noticed Dave's young friend getting mad at not being able to golf well so he took the club and told the young guy without really looking much at the ball how to stand, swing, follow through. He hit the ball while talking to the guy and as soon as he hit it he looked at the dude and kept talking as the ball rolled onto the green. That memory stuck with Dave, and the cool attitude that the caddy had was an impressive feat for one who has a reason to be walking through life with a grudge but doesn’t, to teach people who have everything going for themselves yet had big grudges for pretty minor life conditions.
It's interesting what we can learn from those who we would never think have anything to offer us other than carrying our shit for us.
I have always felt that the quality of a man is determined not by his accomplishments in life but by the way he handles life when shitty things happen. The highest quality men rise to the occasion with an even temper whilst the poorest quality men slump into poor behavior. I find it a constant challenge for myself and usually fail the sniff test.
Collie Buddz sings a song that could have been written by the caddy.
A song about keeping one’s chin up during hard times, easier said than done sometimes, especially when an arm is lost or your child dies in a car accident. When people move on and survive, it’s a tribute to their inner strength, and an inspiration for the rest of us.
...took my kid- he looked like he didn’t want to go but he went anyway, good sport that he is. Waves were twice as big as they were supposed to be and he knew it. Paddling out he got a case of claustrophobia and yelled at me over the roaring waves that he wanted to go back in to shore. No problem! I know how claustrophobia feels. His fear was being all covered up by a wetsuit so he went in saying that he would just get dressed and turn the truck and heat on and read his book.
I helped him take off the fins that we had just bought for that day and paddled out for a while into huge but shitty waves. Shitty because the wind was coming in hard from the east. This spot is shitty with an east wind- needs N-NW-W to in order to comb the waves and organize them. Makes all the difference in the world, believe me.
I caught just a few, paddled hard for almost two hours and joined my son only to find that he couldn’t get out of his wetsuit when he had paddled back in, and had been sitting there for two hours with it on!
WORD- kids do not like to surf in the winter. Don't even try, all it will do is test your relationship with your kid, who needs that?
ps- I have lots of wetsuits for sale that are barely used. anyone interested? Kids wetsuits, brand new. It’s so funny, here I am talking people out of getting their kids into the water when young then trying to find a home for the wetsuits I bought my kid in my own failed attempt.
I sat for a while realizing I did not want to sit any more and got in to the waves you see in this pic... only one in at that point, then someone else got in. I got swept a quarter mile off to the left and had to paddle way back over in order to position myself. No more than six people in at the same time today and I can tell you why!
Ill try to describe the late afternoon views I witnessed today. No doubt will need editing tomorrow.
After an hour I saw a seal repeatedly surface about 40’ away from me. I hoped she wouldn’t be pissed by my presence or misidentify me for a male of her kind- I really try to stick to my own species.
There were ducks of all kinds coming up near me eating some morsel from the depths I couldn’t identify. Seaweed or clams, who the hell knows! They cared not about getting crushed by huge waves. I did.
I looked to my left to see the sunlit white violent water churning over the top of the steep wave faces leaving hollow barrels big enough to stand up in without getting your head knocked off. Beautiful sunlit scenes all day long.
To my right I saw waves barreling over with the sun beaming through the water turning everything a golden shimmering out of this world priceless color. Wave lips charging forward over the top of the glistening smooth wave faces
reflecting brilliant yellow-gold-silver directly into my soul, priceless memories hard to put into words.
At one point around three the western horizon was covered by a thin layer of clouds backlit by the setting yellow-orange sun. I imagined the color the clouds turned to be some kind of silky pollen-like gold that got sprinkled all over everything within reach.
Im lying in bed now writing this, so sore and glad that I have this sport in my life. I don’t care at all about material possessions, all I want is for my life to be filled with days like these.
FRIDAY MORNING BUOY:
Thursday night update (huge surf):
Imagine 19’ waves with ten second periods- pretty good. Add NW wind south swell and you got it made! Add to that the fact it’s a weekday and a nasty weather system and you got it made X 10. It’s about the same prediction as hurricane Florence but there won’t be 1/100th of the people up there because there’s no hype about this storm like there was the hurricane.
Pics tomorrow will prove or disprove my theory (11/17/18 theory proven).
Im predicting that tomorrow will be really really good, and I’m drooling at the thought that we have turned the corner from warm crowded waves into the winter hard core group who always go no matter what the weather (me for sure- for over 15 years at least).
I really need to stop trying to predict the future though, I ain’t that good at it.
Last spring I developed a passion for a band called Tribal Seeds at the same time this cool woman caught my eye. Everything was going well, running smoothly, on course ‘till I came up with the bright idea to use one passion to further another.
I would occasionally text her songs from “tribal seeds” thinking hearts would melt and fabric would decompose into a pile at her feet.
So much for predicting the future, from now on I’m sticking to the present.
She got to the point where she would delete delete delete. I got to the insulted place where I would then text her World War Two French and German polka/parade music (really horrible music) thinking it was so funny I could extricate myself from the giant hole I was standing in.
At some point in developing/crumbling relationships, the current status comes to light and you are either IN or you are out on your ass sitting on the curb. I got comfortable out there as I realized I had to gather up my “Tribal Seeds” songs and politely bow out of the race.
My curse for predicting the future in this case, though, is that every time I hear Tribal Seeds songs that I thought she would absolutely love that she actually absolutely hated, my visions of her come back into my consciousness.
The words in the song and the unusual reggae beat always have my mind swirling with images of bodies intertwined (ummm, hers and mine that is)- that’s my curse for being a smart ass predictor of the future.
So I guess it’s safer to just stick to “looking forward” to stuff instead of “predicting” stuff, whether it’s waves, love, or life! Accordingly, I'm looking forward to surfing tomorrow in whatever the future has in store for me, and whatever that is, I’ll just be happy to be surfing again!
CANT WAIT. Carrot in front of the donkey luring me to clean the house so I can earn surfing credits this week.
My dog PeeTee keeping warm in the sun next to a clump of golden bamboo. Look at her respectful and polite posture! What a great dog.
Monday am update-
...and seen some who surf great. There’s a difference.
I've seen many different kinds of athletes in my life, and had Olympic gold medalists on my swim teams and have observations about people who are truly great at their chosen passion.
I can summarize the best athletes into two categories:
1. Those who are really really good at their sport and do their best to make sure everyone knows it.
2. Those who are really really good at their sport and enjoy their passion with those around them.
If you were to put me into one of the above categories, you couldn't because I am not really really good at surfing, I just like to surf a lot.
When I am surfing, the best times I have usually involve bumping into people who are just having a good time, can carry on a conversation (however limited), can be happy and polite. I see awesome surfers doing things that I did not know could be done (Greg Levy), and have still in my mind the images of rubber band bodies upside down on huge waves turning on a dime.
When you see someone that good at surfing, it's an incredible thing to see and hard to forget. Even more memorable is the style and grace with which these superior athletes treat other surfers, even the beginners and the crappy surfers.... always friendly and polite.
This friendly state of mind brings me back to college swimming days when I was swimming with world class athletes. Happy go lucky and non-bragging could summarize those who were on my team. They didn't need to brag or show off, everyone knew how good they were, they were so cool and laid back. Silent confidence is attractive.
It's a stark contrast to the people who just surf well- the ones who disrespect non-locals, drop in on strangers or those who they don't respect, converse at the top of their voices for all to hear and to assert their own self-perceived dominance, with loud obnoxious swearing arguments during almost every session. For those of you who have never experienced this-good for you, hope you never have to. They think the place belongs to them, and that there is a food chain of sorts, and they are on top.
Maybe that's one reason I like to get in the water as much as possible at the butt-crack of dawn before most everyone else. It's so cool striking up a surf session with like-minded wave-loving friendly people who don't think so much of themselves that they lose sight of the whole picture.
Heard this song as I was finishing this last post so funny!
Higgins beach hates surfers, and says so by banning surfing between 11-5pm daily in the summer, offering limited parking, fining unknowing violators $100-$500. GET THIS- they charge you to surf at Scarborough beach but you can’t look first to see if it’s any good! WTF???
Going to Higgins Beach yearly has become a love affair with that place, but the dark side has come to light. They hate surfers, and we are not going back there any more until they eliminate their stupid policy.
Why go to a town that does not want you??? We are taking our money elsewhere. Montauk NY.
People I know think I’m crazy for surfing like (when) I do. There’s a lot involved just getting up there but pandora makes it fun at that time of night by playing music I’ve never heard. I don’t care that I have no idea what they are saying- I love this music. In this song, the stripes in the road acted like a metronome for the beat. I found my mind drifting like the truck did... no matter, I was the only one on the road at that crazy hour. Turns out this song is from 1984.
You might think that it’s a long lonely drive with stripes on the road slowly hypnotizing me and making me crash but no! Not with great music. After the "murdera" song, this one came on. It also was a "song/road stripe" mind game. When I got home, I bet a friend $15,000 that she couldn’t sing along "word for word" with this song. Safe bet. What a great Karaoke song, I think it'll be tried next summer on Block Island (try it!):
I also heard this song and actually understood what was being sung and now I have a new appreciation for Ziggy:
During these songs then whilst surfing I thought of the environment, the water I surf in, the election, our corrupt government, our MORALLY CORRUPT “president.” I wondered who the hell could vote for that 'individual' and his cowardly republican buddies (I am or used to be republican). I realized that anyone who could vote for him/them had been raised much differently than I was.
Drill for oil off the Rhode Island coast??? NO- ABSOLUTELY NOT. I cannot put into words how much hate I have in my heart for that “man” tRUMP. Thought I could escape thinking about it but this Marley song brought my hate for him flooding to the fore again... the current governmental perversion is never too far away from my consciousness.
I got to where I knew I was going to surf and it was one of the most beautiful sights, although I was half an hour late. I like getting in when it's black and I have the entire place to myself. Peter is in this video below, easy to see if you squint.
I got in and surfed clumsily till I found my groove. The sun slowly crept up over the horizon turning the entire morning a burning orange. As I sat waiting for waves, I could tell the big ones because they blocked the light. LOOK OUT!
One wave in particular rose over me before breaking and was see-through and glassy and the orange horizon was fuzzily coming through the green wave creating some otherworldly new color never seen on any color chart. I duck dove through the face to find the orange horizon returning as soon as I shook the water out of my eyes like a mangy dog. Sorry for the tiresome descriptives, but that's exactly what went through my mind as it happened.
”Comfortably Bummed” update: I met the girl who drives the bummed car who said her bf made the bumper sticker. I gave her a couplea bucks and he is going to send one to me. Can’t wait. I told her I could relate to the sticker, esp after last Monday’s session. Perspective, people, perspective.
I also met the guy who gave me the drone shots from last year hurricane Maria 9/26/17. He is going to send me shots from today.
Got the bummed sticker today. I gotta say it’s pretty strange to walk up to a total stranger (esp a girl) and compliment her on her bumper sticker. I wouldn’t blame her for thinking not nice thoughts about someone like me (me), but I’m a nice guy and I know that but she doesn’t. Next time I see her I’ll thank her and that’ll be that so she does not think I have ulterior motives-hey, I just liked that bumper sticker!
Hi, my name is
David Benjamin and I started swimming in Chappaqua, NY., swam for Badger swim team, Mercersburg Academy, NC State University, then Westport YMCA masters. I got bored of the ol' back and forth of competitive swimming and the high cost of skiing. Surfing took over and I never looked back.