Small Fringe Benefits -- 10/30/99

Small, but fun

A huge low in the North Pacific generated some epic surf on the West Coast on what was to be known as Big Thursday ( Most of the energy missed Hawaii, but the fringes of the storm jacked our swell to double-overhead on Friday from the north. Perfect for this weekend warrior.

Buddy was off-island, and Makani had some family matters to attend to. However, Justin was available for a boogie jaunt to the Country. We initially targeted the Beach Park, but since the swell was quickly swinging to the east, we decided to head to Laniakea instead.

Unfortunately, the system moved so fast that by Saturday, the swell diminished substantially to about the head-high range. Also, the weekend warrior crew was out en force (myself included), with lots of tankers all over the place.

Despite the lack of waves, large crowd and the "challenge" of sponging in a predominant longboard/funboard environment, we still managed to eek out a decent session.

Justin caught some nice ones, including this one set where he found himself all alone. I remember seeing his expression of pure surprise as he had this nice pitching wave all to himself, actually running ahead of the wave too much. His new board seemed to work really well for him.

Me, I was just cruising. Bummed about missing the epic session the day before, I still caught a few. No standouts rides; just some decent walls.

Later on in the lineup, I got a chance to talk to Kaipo Jaquias, a pro surfer also from Kauai. Told him that I was surfing with Makani (who was and still is a rippah), and he reminisced that he looked up to Makani big time when he was a kid.

Also asked him about the Matt Warshaw interview he did a long time ago; the one in which Warshaw called Hanamaulu the ghetto of Kauai. Kaipo said that some of these writers just write whatever they wanted.

It was only then that I realized how naive Iíve been. Being a pseudo-journalist, I know the temptation of embellishment for the sake of jazzing up a story. It didnít occur to me that these magazine writers would stoop so low, especially at the expense of others.

Anyway, Kaipo ripped, as usual. He actually dropped off the ASP WCT tour this year to spend time with his family. I fully understood his decision to be with his loved ones.

Even though it wasnít the best of sessions, it still satisfied. Fringe bennies are always nice.

Aloha from Paradise,