31 August 2010

A Session in Three Parts




My fears about being chased out of the water while matting are long gone. If the lifeguards want me, they'll have to come and get me. If they kick me out one day, I'll just be back out the next.

I knew I wanted to ride both the mat and a board today. Variety is the spice of life . . . or so they say. As I was blowing up the mat, I decided not to worry about the lifeguard. I was certain he or she could see me, but with so many other people in the water, many of whom weren't exactly competent swimmers, I figured my mat and I were the least of his or her worries.

My goal on the mat? Three waves and out. I want to make sure I ride the mat each week. There's no law that says I have to stay on it throughout a session, thereby raising the ire of the lifeguards. If I stay on it for a bit and then get out, I think they (1) won't bother me and (2) will get so accustomed to seeing me on it that they won't always say anything when they see me matting on less crowded days. I suppose I'm taking a page from my pool skating compadres. They find a new pool. They scope out the situation, hit the pool for about 15 minutes and jet. Then they slowly but surely start spending more and more time at said pool, eventually getting friendly with the neighbors and becoming familiar faces around the neighborhood. I'm going to assume that works with lifeguards too. When the lifeguard is there, I won't take for granted the time that person is spending turning a blind eye to me and the mat. When the lifeguard isn't there, I will mat to my heart's content.

I think I'm on to something with my idea of a session in three parts. Now to incorporate the handplane so that I can have a session in four parts!


At 8/31/10, 3:51 PM, Blogger pabs said...

My GWAD...I keep forgetting that you have to not only deal wit da crowds, but lifeguards as well. Up in the cold North, we don't need no stinking lifeguards...we get to surf whatever works for ya! :-)

At 9/1/10, 2:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why do the lifeguards hassle mat riders? Is this normal in the USA or only in your area? In Australia there is no problem where or what you ride. Actually the lifeguards at my local breaks dont even worry about me catching waves in the swimmers only area, they probably think I am only fooling around or because the mat is soft it wont hurt anyone even if I hit them. I might be coming to California LA next year and would like to catch a few waves if possible. Where cant I surf?

At 9/1/10, 6:18 AM, Blogger Surfsister said...

It's not all lifeguards or even all counties. There is a municipal law against them in L.A. County though. Still, you just have to be cool about it. The first time I rode my mat, I knew nothing about the law and was riding it right in front of a lifeguard tower. The lifeguard never said a word.

Truthfully, the average lifeguard is fine with mats, but can't always turn a blind eye because of the supervisors who will come down hard on her if she doesn't say something to the mat rider.

At 9/1/10, 4:18 PM, Anonymous Dale said...

Where can we see Ken's 300+ photos of the mat meet?

At 9/1/10, 9:34 PM, Blogger Surfsister said...

That's a good question, Dale. I have neither the time nor the inclination to set up a site and post 300 pictures! Many of the photos are sequence shots. Some are crash and burn shots—those would be the photos of me! I think Ken is talking about setting up a site and posting photos though.

At 9/4/10, 5:49 PM, Anonymous Glenn said...

That last photo made me smile. Nice trim position - very cool shot!

At 9/4/10, 5:54 PM, Blogger Surfsister said...

I'm loving this board. If it's got a snout, I want to surf it. These days, I'm either on that Almond pig or my Paul Gross hull pig. Both boards are fantastic!

At 9/14/10, 7:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

elitist mo foes, its all surfing just different vehicles. standup, kneel, prone, its all just for fun.



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