Monday, September 03, 2007

Session 7117-7118: Complexity Of Setting Up A Session With Other Surfers

Complexity Of Setting Up A Session With Other Surfers

Before I set out to write this session log, I am not complaining, but I am describing the situations that I have observed over the past few years.

Through my surfing I have had various challenges setting up sessions with buddies. I now came to see some basic pattern in surf buddies, myself included, and the combo of those factors make it really difficult for all of us to be surfing at the same spot at the same time.

Everyone has a little element of those characteristics, like a virtual mixing board where the knobs and sliders are adjusted all differently.

Time Bound Buddies

This happens a lot with people with children. It appears that the children controls their surf plan. Can't blame you, but nevertheless, we both need to plan carefully around plans.

From time to time, even people without children fall into this category as their "better half" appears to be the controlling factor in schedule.

I too am time constrained to the extent that the session must be early in the morning before I can sneak in to the office or the morning meeting.

The challenge with surfing with them is that we can never meet up at the right time and right place. You know how timing is very important in surfing.

Location Bound Buddies

OK... I used to belong to this class of surfers.

I see a lot of this, a lot of people only want to surf Linda Mar and basically only there even if we tell them that other spots are firing at better quality. They also tend to paddle out exactly right in the smack of where most people are and take off in all at the same time. And if they do their idea of surfing other location is Cowells or Inside 38th and do exactly the same... paddle to the most crowded spot and take off when others are taking off. They tend not to surf nowhere in between.

The challenge surfing with them is that I often have to surf their breaks with crowds, and I often do not want to.

Quality Control Freak Buddies

There are some people I know who would only go out when the condition is in a specific way or must pick the best out of the worst. They tend to choose bigger and hollower condition that hold the shape. They tend to be almost totally opposite of the location bound surfers; they are everywhere on the coast. We all know their cars, and we tend to go where we find their cars are parked, or we also know that we've missed good waves when they are going past the other direction on the highway.

Also these are the people whom I ran into them at parking lot a lot, but not much in the water. They are just checking and usually on the way to another spot that they know could be better. Once they leave the lot, us "regulars" on the coast will always talk about, if, how, when, and what they do to fund their surfing, let alone other things in life. Nevertheless, they are here year after year, and they are just way above and beyond technically from most of us.

Challenge setting up a session with them is that we can't.

Quality Insecure Buddies

I will never become this type.

Getting in the water "anyway" is very important to me.

I have seen a few people in this category, and I have hardly ever seen them surf. They only go out locally if the condition is super great, which of course we all know that does not happen very often.

Challenge setting up a session with them is that they won't go out even if they come. That makes me feel really bad about dragging them out to "my" break.

Skill Bound Buddies

This is, actually where I falls under presently.

This is a variation of Quality Bound buddies. We tend to choose waves that we can only handle, but we are more or less more at the mercy of the nature. We tend to like small, mushy, safe conditions without wind and . As a result this tends to limit the locations where we can surf, and can't hang around with large crowd because either we get in the way or they get in our way.

Challenge setting up a session with them is that we vary in skill set and preferences that we can never agree where to pick, by the time we did all the surf checks and discussed about it the session is over. You know we are all in the sensitive generation, never rock the boat, and never hurt other peoples' feelings...

Geek Buddies

I too am VERY guilty of being in this category of surfers.

These days especially in affluent area like NorCAL or OC, you find them everywhere. There are some surfers that own very expensive latest brand new pro gear, from head to toe, surf boards for all occasions, hot fins, nose guards, tail guards, wax removing system or any other accessories that can be found at surf shops and online, wear just about everything that can be worn, for helmet, hood, hot skins underneath, speedo, webbed gloves to the latest model booties....

But their surfing is not just up to par. The surfer next to him/her with a 5 year old dinged up board out-paddles, knocks their socks off... catching 10 times more waves. Because of that and all new shiny equipment, they stick out like a sore thumb in any lineup.

Advice to myself. The water is warm in the summer even in NorCAL, take my hood and gloves off, get refreshed with a bit chilly but wake-up water, and use solid equipment without much gimmicks like funny (t/r)ails and funny fin configs. Approach the realm of a surfing Yoda. People used to rip on their redwood planks!

There is no challenge setting up a session with them to the extent they go anywhere, any place and any time, even the condition is better elsewhere. They see the ocean, they suit up (fully of course) and go in and don't catch any wave.

I am starting to get it though, so this season, I have shed my helmet, gloves, hood and if I am in So Cal, wet suits and booties are out too. Now I can really blend in.

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