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9 Simple Rules for Dating a Surfer

When it comes to the dating world, surfers can be a “special” bunch. One minute you think you’re going for a nice romantic walk on the beach, the next thing you know, you’ve got a DSLR in tow, no idea how to use it and your guy (or gal) is saying “Ok, babe! Just remember to hold down the button when you see me on a wave!”

Good thing for that  tan chiseled bod, right?

Sure.

If feelings progress from “eye candy” status and you do not partake in the salty agua pleasures, here are some pointers you might consider while dating your little surfer girl or boy. RESULTS MAY VARY.

How many fins do you think he's got on the face?   Always a crowd pleaser, Wedge can produce one heart-stopping drop after the next.

How many fins do you think he’s got on the face? Always a crowd pleaser, Wedge can produce one heart-stopping drop after the next.

    1.) Waves, baby…

It’s all about those bumps in the ocean. And he or she will probably want you to watch them surf, too. Don’t try to understand the obsession, just go with it. The more your significant other tries to explain their love for surfing, the crazier they might sound. Just keep in mind this is a part of their life that keeps them connected/sane/calm, so don’t try to take it away—or consider your relationship done-zo.

   2.) Expect global maps and charts to be part of your internet browser favorites/wall decor.

Don’t be surprised if  your browser’s homepage is NOAA, Surfline, The Inertia…A typical surfer loves to travel in search of the endless break, the endless summer, the endless beer bottle/coconut farm/smoothie…whatever “endless” journey they have in mind, know that there will be a map or chart on the wall depicting this journey…or a dream scene from it.

"Look at that huge trench off the coast of..." (expect that to be your next vacay spot.

“Look at that huge trench off the coast of…” (expect that to be your next vacay spot.)

3.) You will always know what the weather’s doing

You’re the first one who knew it was going to be 85 degrees in the middle of February and you dressed approps…that’s a plus, right? You’ve got your surfer to thank for that.

4.) Your dates will be based around the tide schedule

Let’s just hope your surfer significant other understands that meeting the parents is not as “tide-friendly.”

5.) Expect sand in the bed

Unless your surfer significant other is OCD, know that your bed sheets will inherit the beach. If sand critters are beginning to establish colonies and form hierarchies under the sheets, that’s when you might want to establish boundaries…and a terrific outside shower system.

Clearly you do not want this in your bed...unless you like overnight exfoliation.

Clearly you do not want this in your bed…unless you like overnight exfoliation.

 6.) You may travel to locales you didn’t know existed. Bring a hat, sunscreen and distractions.

Where the heck is Lombok? Don’t see a Groupon travel special for that one. FYI: Most surfers base their travel  around maps, charts (see ‘Wall Decor’), last minute web rates and friends with standby hook ups… The words “all-inclusive” don’t register to the briny haired.

7.) You like talking on the phone or texting for long periods of time?

TOO BAD. Those charted journeys often require several days with no cell service or if your surfer is still local, they might just be in the water–of course: the day I see someone chatting away on their phone in the lineup is the day I quit– This is a reality you will have to face. If your surfer has a travel bug, investigate your phone’s international coverage and remember apps like “What’s App,” “Viber” and Skype. It’s important to chime in while they’re submerged in a foreign country and possibly surrounded by dangerous happenings…like other half-naked, tanned and chiseled bods.

Feeling a little lost in translation? Don't fret.

Feeling a little lost in translation? Don’t fret.

8.) Do not attempt to decode surfer jargon.

Whenever he or she is around fellow surfers, it’s as if they speak another language, right? Don’t stress. This is what surfers like to refer to as “frothing” and it’s completely normal. Surfer Today has a decent basic surf speak guide.

Your first test: “Bro, did you see that perfect A-frame peak I scored on the outside?! Dude, that set was macking!! My alaia launched an air on the inside right over the kook chillin’ on that airplane wing!”

Tales can become as tall as the barrel they chat about...unless the have a camera.

Tales can become as tall as the barrel they chat about…unless they have a camera.

9.) Listen to their stories

So you’ve heard about how a shark fin surfaced three feet in front of them after their skag gashed their leg open for the ten millionth time… or that time they caught a “30 second barrel” at Huntington Pier…or the double over head wave they scored at Trestles with no one out. It’s always good to just smile and listen, even if the tales grow taller by the day.

Disclaimer: This is based on no sociological or anthropological research other being a surfer girl for the past 11 years. There are many surfers out there who do not adhere to the stereotype, these are known as your “gems.” GO FOR IT…dude.

The ‘Oh Shit’ Files-Vol. 2: Hurricane Norbert

Storm patterns have turned my weekends into glorious photo bliss coupled with daily surfaris up the coast. A few weeks ago, Hurricane Norbert graced our coastline with waves aplenty and warm water temps that I will surely be dreaming about six months from now. The category 3 hurricane veered up the baja coast and onto the inland southwestern region of the U.S. and delivered a much-needed dose of rain …now if only he swung a little more west, California’s serious drought problem might have been temporarily staved.

Save that water people!!

Until then, my journey plopped me in front of Newport’s finest carnage-inducing break: Wedge. Whether you surf, sponge or skin it at Orange County’s premier balls-to-the-wall sandbar slab, Wedge will do more than ‘kick your ass.’ It will turn you inside out, grind you in sand and spit whats left of you out onto the shoreline.

It might be wise to seek some sage advice from a seasoned pro or local before setting a toe in the water. I wonder who would be considered Wedge’s ‘Turtle’….brah….or would that be ‘bro’…?

Either way at Wedge,“…you’re gonna get drilled.”

#HurricaneMarie

If you were held captive inside an office like me during one of the biggest swells in 20 years on August 27th, 2014, your only outlet was: ###SoCiAlMeDiA.### As I arrived to work a bit embittered, random Facebook, Instagram and Twitter checks ensued. With every epic media update, my stomach twinged, my jaw dropped and mouthed in the stereotypical surfer fashion: “No waaay.”

I’ve never felt like such a social media stalker as I watched thick wedgey peaks plow through all corners of the California coast.

*Repeatedly bangs forehead against desk while the drone of the computer mocks all senses*

Some popular hashtags:

  • #hurricanemarie
  • #hurricanemarie2014
  • #bigwednesday
  • #thewedge
  • #waveporn
  • #purpleblob
  • #newportbeach

Despite the fact that I didn’t shoot the coveted Wedge pumping out 30 foot walls or Newport Point doing it’s best Pipeline impersonation, I managed to squeeze in some quick photos of certain spots before and after work…sans carnage…sadly.

The line, yes there was a LINE, to get onto the Newport peninsula was comparable to the city’s popular Fourth of July or Christmas parades. My terrific ‘love’ for crowds and parallel parking combined with the setting sun left me in a time crunch, so after one U-turn , my wheels were rolling towards Laguna and Dana Point. Newport be damned.

After narrowly escaping a park ranger’s citation (but not her lecture about possibly killing an endangered pocket mouse), the sun set over the corduroy-ed Pacific and I finally felt like my freelancer-self, again.

I’m alive!! I said, as I skipped to my car with blurry photos in tow, the park ranger glaring behind me.

Big Wednesday 2014 not only woke up the Pacific, but also reminded me of my passions that no amount of social media or any computer/smart phone can replicate.

 

The ‘Oh Shit’ Files

It’s great to see photos of perfectly shaped waves that make you salivate and re-think jobs, relationships and other potential long-term life investments. This is not the case…just big, not-so-gnarly walls of water mowing over some brave weekend warriors at Trestles last weekend.  I just happen to have my camera, albeit not the right lens, however, I caught some closeout fun at Upper Trestles on this last swell. Jobs, relationships and long-term life investments saved.

Enjoy the sorta-carnage. For real carnage, get your butt to The Wedge on the next south swell.

Boys will be Boys: Six Tips for Surfer Girls Traveling with Surfer Boys

It’s common knowledge that the mass majority of surfers in the lineup are guys. Okay ladies, let’s face it: the likelihood of an all-girls surf trip to Mexico is pretty slim. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve traveled to Mexico by myself, survived and loved it, however, not many of my surfer girlfriends are as eager to hop the border and rough it to find perfect un-crowded waves. Call me ‘crazy’ for going to Mexico by myself on my first excursion, call me ‘insane’ for the second trip with a bunch of boys. I don’t care. My end results were fun times with no regrets.

Testosterone is everywhere on a guys trip and every once in a while, they might think you’re cool enough to include in their boys club, but I don’t blame you if you re-consider and decide to wait until Mexico’s drug war has ended and kidnappings are at an all-time low.
But if you’re as impatient as I was and pale at the thought of empty points breaking without you, here are few tips about traveling with the boys:

1.) Let them be Boys
You are on this trip to surf and surf some more. They are on this trip to do the same along with all the beer guzzling contests, dirty jokes, burps and farts intact. Deal with it. Bodily functions are a-plenty, so if you have a weak stomach, perhaps you shouldn’t have gone on this trip. Bring a nose plug.

2.) Bring a good book or a pair of headphones.

Get ready for hair metal mixes, mass drunken sing-a-longs to a garden variety of rap songs, dirty jokes you didn’t know existed and fart smells that will fry your nose hair. Think I’m kidding? Think again, chica. But don’t be bitter, this is a boy’s trip and you’re, well, the minority. It doesn’t hurt to occasionally force-feed a little Cyndie Lauper down their throats, either. You would be surprised by the music middle ground you can reach with a group of guys. Who knows? There might be a closet Taylor Swift fan among the group.
But there are times when those dirty jokes or fart noises can get out of hand. Tired of hearing Metallica’s ‘Creeping Death’ for the 10 millionth time? Remember to come prepared with your head gear equipped with your favorite tunes.

3.) Know Your Limits and Plan Back-Up Activities
If you don’t want to stay up for that third keg of beer or you’d rather not surf the spot swarming with seals, let your guy friends be their gnarly testosterone selves. Go for a hike, surf a different spot or take some ‘you’ time. After all, traveling with all boys might make you forget that you are, in fact, a girl. Celebrate all that is feminine while they hunt for bone-crushing barrels that break in inch-deep water. But if you can hang, go for it! You will only command more respect among the Y-chromosomed. Just try not to emasculate them in the process. But, know your own limits so they don’t have to cut the trip short due to your cute cocky self scoring a broken limb or head injury instead of a sick drainer.

4.) Stroke Their, um, Ego
Despite the over-stated machismo image stereotyped for surfer boys, there is a secret sensitive Sally whose feelings and ego can get hurt. Guys aren’t made of stone, so always stay positive and patient. Make them feel good about their attempt at breakfast or their supposed ‘sense of direction.’ Most of all, compliment their waves. Whether they’re ripping or taking dives over the falls, find something good about that ride. A little ‘yeeww’ goes a long way.

5.) Why Can’t We Be Friends?
If you intend to hook up with one of the guys, stay home. Putting that dynamic into the mix can add an awkward vibe to the trip and tends to create jealousy or resentment among fellow compadres. Be cool and try not to cloud a male bonding experience with your cute, um, assets. Keep your pants on. If sparks fly, try to wait until you’re in familiar territory. Besides, I bet he will respect you that much more if you play a little hard-to-get and show him that he’s not the center of your universe…for now.

6.) Laugh
Perhaps the most important point of all: laughter is key. Yeah, boys can be gross, smelly and downright annoying, but really, just laugh. Don’t deny it, your inner tomboy busted with laughter when your buddy chugged four Tecates then proudly belched his A-B-C’s. Unless you’re sitting in the U.S./Mexico border traffic, the ipod’s gone stale and your buddy continues to drink until he unwittingly trades his passport for more tequila which consequently shoves you’re crew into the secondary line, let it fly. Besides, I’m guessing if you’ve made it to the end of this article, you probably aren’t 100 percent girly-girl, anyway. Ain’t no smirking and mouthing ‘what an idiot’ to a home girl who’s not there! Laugh it off.

Just a Quickie to Mexico

South-bound feels so good to hashtag…post…Tweet…or vocalize…whatever your communication fancy, tell it to the world, be stoked and unplug, if only for a day.

A couple of friends and I crossed the U.S./Mexico border for a couple of days and had the time of our lives, san distractions. Some times it is SO necessary to shut off the noise from everyday life and seek out another adventure that’s beyond a desk, phone or face-to-face.

Mexico’s great for that.

I CONFESS: I’ve got that old familiar itch and I intend to scratch it.


 

Good friends=Good times

Good friends=Good times

 

Marine Layer Productions: ‘Loaded’

LOADED. from Marine Layer on Vimeo.

In between random rain clouds, chilly weather and office walls that barely shield the death metal tunes that hammer throughout the warehouse, I find comfort in Dane Reynolds latest surf film concoction Loaded –brought to the masses by Marine Layer Productions.

Loaded takes you from warm to cold, boardies to booties, mushy to hollow through the stylings of Mr. Reynolds, Craig Anderson, Noa Deane, Taylor Knox, Nat Young and red-haired Andrew Doheny….for a second I thought he was Alex Knost on a short board.

From Anderson’s long wavy locks whipping around his often shirtless bod through heaving barrels to Reynold’s chop-hops through cold shitty mush (and of course making it look impossibly fun), to Knox’s almost-airs, I’m stoked. My dull Thursday afternoon has turned into new music purchases and daylight savings anticipation (March 9th!) while my mouse quietly hovers over the ‘pause’ button in between segments.

Thanks, Marine Layer Productions.

A New Year: New places and faces

There’s something about surfing a new spot that brings out my inner child. It is one of few times I happily wake up at 6:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning and make a mad dash 40 miles south of home.

Even though the term is “cabin fever,” I am re-naming it to “office fever” that hurtles me over the edge into temporary madness defined by computers, social media and fake grass. By the end of the week, my over-driven knuckles and fuzzy brain can only process the excitement of my crazed Saturday morning dashes.

I CONFESS…In my “adult” life experience so far, I’ve learned to appreciate the small happenings, the quick trips, the new places and faces even more than I did in in my college days. After my trip to one of San Diego‘s finer breaks, I concluded: I will always find time for mad dashes and random escapes sans cords, signals or text alerts.

Even through these mini-adventures, fun is still had and lessons are still learned.

My lesson: Remember to stretch your legs and get out of your bubble. You never know what kind of moments are in store for you.

A great way to start a new year.

A great way to start a new year.

How to Make the Best Coconut Smoothie

Going a bit coco-nuts

Going a bit coco-nuts

If you follow me on any social media, you know I’ve gone a little coco-nuts with my recent obsession with cocos. If one thing was consistent about my experience in Nicaragua, it was this:

Every morning my friend Katie would wake up at the crack of dawn to pry into one or two freshly picked young coconuts to create the most energy-inducing smoothie for our pre or post-surf sessions. For daily three-to-five hour surf sessions, this drink proved to be beneficial and never left us feeling hungry.

When our trip came to an end, Katie inspired me to take a crack at coconuts at home. So instead of caffeine with a standard breakfast,  I’ve been trying this smoothie every morning.

This ain't Jamba Juice

This ain’t Jamba Juice

I CONFESSI don’t use a machete to crack open my cocos, so I would like to caution anyone who decides to crack open a coconut for their first time. If you must use a fresh coconut, don’t jeopardize your digits and other appendages by whacking the coco with an 18-inch machete blade. Your fingers are more valuable than the 8-to-10 ounces of water and meat inside the coco. Be safe and use other tools to get into that coco. I use a large knife to shave off the top and a flat head screwdriver and meat tenderizer to break into the coco. *Many thanks goes out to my roommates who get to hear the incessant hammering :)*

Or you can simply purchase the water!

It cracked open nice and neat.

It cracked open nice and neat.

For this recipe, we will stick with the basic store-bought coconut water:

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces coconut water
  • 2-3 tablespoons of cacao powder (not to be confused with coco powder-unlike coco, this product does not contain any sugar)
  • 2-3 pitted medjool dates (the meat from these dates is thicker than other dates)
  • 1/2 banana
  • 2-3 ounces coconut meat
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

*Serving size: 1*

What you might get from one young coconut

What you might get from one young coconut

Directions:

Blend all of the ingredients together in your licuadora (blender) and drink immediately! You won’t be disappointed. :)  In this recipe, it is best to use a young coconut because there is more water inside and the meat is less fatty. Experiment with other ingredients, too! Add some flax seed or maybe your favorite protein powder! Spinach can make your smoothie creamier, not to mention packed full of iron. Berries are tasty, too. I threw in some papaya and it made my smoothie super creamy! Whatever your palate wants, give it a try! My friend created a gingerbread coconut smoothie from fresh ginger and coconuts. I hope I get to try it! :)

I bought freshly pressed cacao powder in Chinandega, Nicaragua.

I bought freshly pressed cacao powder in Chinandega, Nicaragua.

Some info on coconuts: According to the Library of Congress, the coconut is loosely considered to be a fruit, a nut and seed, although it is formally considered a ‘drupe’ to botany freaks. A drupe is a fruit with a hard stony covering that encapsulates a seed. Drupes often have three layers and come in forms like avocados, peaches, pistachios and coffee beans.

Coconuts are also packed with protein, they have more potassium than a banana and contain tons of electrolytes and healthy fats–an overall amazing combination for surf fiends, like yours truly. However, if you are going for broke on your workout or surf sesh, do not solely rely on coconut water, as it does not contain much of the necessary mineral sodium that you loose when you sweat.

For me, I never felt fatigued after surfing my brains out…Coconuts or bust!!

After I got back to the states, my Christmas list went a little something like this:

1.) Machete or big knife

2.) Swiss Army Knife

3.) Hammer and nails

4.) Water Purifier

…you get the idea. My dad’s response:

“So you want a treasure map, too?”

Only if it leads to perfect waves and coconuts, dad. ;)

Young cocos await their fate on a black sand beach in Nicaragua.

Young cocos await their fate on a black sand beach in Nicaragua.

Surf Speak in Spanish

It's times like these where communication is key...not to mention super fun!

It’s times like these where communication is key…not to mention super fun!

On my recent trip to Nicaragua, I found myself socializing with nothing but spanish-speaking locals. I was so stoked  because mi español became muy mejor and by the end of my week-long trip, I was helping my friends translate. There’s nothing like submerging yourself!

Cinco cocos verde.

Cinco cocos verde.

Daydreams of those perfect warm water barrels should include a little español because once you get down there, not only does everyone talk nothing but Spanish, but many people also might not understand much (if any!) English. Therefore: es muy importante para practicar su español!

I CONFESS: My practice did not begin until I was reading the safety guide while my flight rolled down the runway. The first thing I picked up really quick: this ain’t Mexico…people talk very fast! Time to buck up.

So while you continue to get shacked in your dreams, insert a little Spanish speak so reality won’t hit you like a ton of bricks being laid out for that awesome language barrier.

“Me gusta tubos en Nicaragua!”

Ok, snap out of the barrel/bikini/hot salsa dancing scene for a second and float back down to reality: no matter which Spanish-speaking country you decide to trip-it to, bring a Spanish-English dictionary. I don’t care how many apps you download onto your smartphone, you need a book. Other than draining your battery, apps tend to require a wifi signal and although most places might have a signal, it won’t be there all the time and readily available.

Iguana on a stick! Julio negotiates dinner options: green or black iguana?

Iguana on a stick! Julio negotiates dinner options: green or black iguana?

 Diccionarios are a cheaper safer route and won’t cost a pretty penny if it gets ruined. If your dictionary gets wet, simply lay it out in the hot sun and presto! It’s still readable. Iphone gets wet? That’s a $600 bummer.

So for you traveling surfers, assuming you made it beyond the aeropuerto and have reached your calle to an undisclosed locale, consider these words before paddling out to any pico:

Surfing (verb): ….Surfeo or Surf

Beach: ……………..La Playa

Surfboard: ………….La Tabla

Pico

Pico

Ocean (noun): …..Mar
Water: ……………..Agua
High Tide: ……….Marea Alta
Low Tide: ……….Marea Baja
Small waves: ….Pequeñas olas
Big waves: …….Grandes olas
Tubes or Barrels:…………….Tubos
Rocks: ………….Rocas
Cow:………………Vaca
Horse:…………….Caballo
Chicken:…………Pollo
Sting Ray: …….Pastinaca
Jellyfish: ………Medusa
Fish: ……………Pescado
Shark: ………..Tiburón
Boat: ………….Barco
Sand: ………..Arena
Wind: ……….Viento
Rain: ………..Lluvia
Sun: ………..Sol
Hot: ………..Caliente
Cold: ………Frío
Right: ……..Derecho
Left: ……….Izquierda
Island: ……Isla
Secret:…..Secreto
Puesta del sol

Puesta del sol

Paddle (verb): ……..Chapotear
Strong (strength):Fuerte
Strong (force): …….Fuerza
Happy: ……………..Feliz
Sad: …………………Triste
Tired: ………………Cansado/a
Fun: ……………….Divertido/a
Today: …………..Hoy
Tomorrow: …….Mañana
Tonight: ……….Esta Noche
Late: ………….Tarde
Near, close to: ..Cerca
Far: ……………….Lejos
Fast: ……………..Rápido
Slow: ……………Lento
Point: …………..Punta
Reef: ………….Arrecife
Shallow: …….Poco Profundo
Deep: ………Profundo
Beer: ………Cerveza
Wine: ………Vino
Food: ……..Comida
Moto:……..Motorbike
"Arena"

“Arena”

Common phrases:
“How are you doing?” ¿Cómo está? ¿Qué tal?
“Please.” Por favor.
“Thank you.” Gracias.
“I want to go surfing.” Quiero ir a hacer surf.
“I would like to go surfing.” Me gustria hacer surf.
“Where are the rocks?” ¿Dónde están las rocas?
“The wind is strong today!” El viento es fuerte hoy.
“Do you want this wave?” ¿Qué quiere esta ola?
“I’m so hungry/thirsty!” Tengo hambre/sed!
“Where is the beach?” ¿Donde esta la playa?
“Where is the road?” ¿Dónde está el camino?
“Where is my dictionary?” ¿Dónde está mi diccionario?
“I want to learn to speak Spanish.” Quiero aprender a hablar español.
“I am having so much fun!” Estoy teniendo tan divertido!
“I was too late.” Llegué tarde.
“The waves are good today!” Las olas son buenas hoy.
The sweetest gato ever!

The sweetest gato ever!

 I hope this lista helps you! Remember to always bring your surf etiquette, too! Despite your attempts at Spanish, your actions will ALWAYS speak louder than your words. The locals know it, too. Be nice.
Buena suerte, amigos!