21 February 2005

Surf Culture

Don't get me started!!! Too late. I've gotten myself started already. What bothers me is that corporate America and Hollywood are allowed to dictate what surf culture is. From what I can tell, they view surfing as the domain of those who are young, blond, and moving through life without a care in the world. Has anyone looked at the people sitting out in the line-ups? Most of us don't fall within that demographic. Does that mean we're not true surfers? I'm sorry, Roxy, but I'm middle-aged with a husband, a kid, and a shitload of bills. I also have a job. And when given a little free time to myself, I surf. The people I see surfing day in and day out are usually over 30. Very few of us are walking billboards for the big surf corporations. Outside of the water, there is nothing about any of us that would suggest that we surf. Does that mean we don't count? Does it mean I'm dressed the wrong way? I'm always a little surprised and pissed off when people say, with a raised eyebrow, "You surf? Really?" Well, what the hell do they think surfers look like?

On a side note, do we non-Hawaiian surfers really have a right to claim surfing as part of our culture? Aren't the Hawaiians the only ones who can that?


At 2/22/05, 10:06 AM, Blogger crustyripper said...

You go Surfsister! Anger day. Hey if you want to see what Hollywood currently thinks of our "culture" check out the Aaron Spelling produced "Summerland". You'll puke. However, to your other comments, I live south of you and down here there is definitely a large chunk of the surfing population that fits the "young and blonde" stereotype. And the little buggers rip it up too by the way. So it’s not totally unfounded. I agree the surf media are the worst perpetrators. Except for Longboard and Surfers' Journal, the mags seem to think everyone is under 25, ripped, and dreaming of turning pro. They also seem to think we’re all obsessed with 25 foot plus surf. Gimme a break, only 2-5% of the surfing population hits it when the surf is double overhead+. But I don’t think they define surf culture – they just define it for posers who want to be a part of it. Or a part of what they think it is. All “real” surfers know it is marketing hype. Ever since Gidget, surfing represents in peoples’ minds the young, athletic, and free spirited/rebellious person many people want to be. A great image to use to sell a soft drink, car, or a pair of pants.

At 2/22/05, 12:40 PM, Blogger puttzle said...

Saw your post on Whiffleboy's blog and thought I'd take a look see. Nice work, keep it up.

May Gidget rest in peace.


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