Saturday, August 04, 2007

The Greatest Headline in the History of Print

Coast News columnist, political activist and co-owner of the best coffee shop in town writes this stinging essay that features the greatest headline I have ever seen published in any periodical, ever. Even people who have given up reading Bob's columns because they are always about George Bush and global warming, won't be able to resist this one.

Homophobic surf Nazis attack Cardiff

See also:

Josh Hansen reacts to Cardiff Surfer statue

Read the community message board topic about Cardiff statue click here

Watch a video about the Cardiff Surfer statue on the Surfer magazine website click here


  1. Remarks from the other sideAugust 05, 2007 8:36 AM

    Bob wants to know if a wave can be gay? A wetsuit?

    In common usage within the younger surf community, which the statue has been said to represent, "gay" currently does not have a meaning associated with sexuality. It means “that sucks.” The word’s etymological likely stems from derogatory, ignorant, and bigoted usage, but that is not its common usage today.

    Joel Tudor thinks Cherry Hill is gay. Translation = world champion cardiffian surfer thinks solana beach's surf break isn't even worth looking at. A wave has not sexual orientation.

    Creating a tension with this usage is its usage to describe the wetsuit of a particular longboarder who surfs Swamis. This wetsuit has purple panels and is used with matching purple speedos. Frequently wondered by spectators of all sorts is if that surfer is homosexual. He might not be but his wetsuit sure is gay.

  2. I just heard that the sculpture has a bikini top and a wrestler's mask!

  3. The term gay is southern California surf slang that originated in the 1980s when frosted spiky hair and bright dayglo wetsuits became the fashion. In surfing if something or someone is gay it means it sucks or is lame. I know the guy who does this blog and he is known as a art fag in surfing because he wears metrosexual clothes and likes the sensitive surf films like Shelter and Sprout. I hope this clears up confusion and i just want to say that this website is gay.

  4. Bigoted remarks reflect poorly on the surf community. Right ons to Bob for calling people out for their insensitivity.

    Boos for Bob because he thinks everyone who calls the statue a blunder or mockery is doing so because of bigotry. That is just not true.

    Bob’s insult to the artist explains everything. He says the statue is of a beginner. He writes “kook” or “grom”, which means something else, but what he means is beginner. The artist says he attempted to create a surfer doing a floater. Only highly skilled and highly athletic type surfers do sick floaters. Bob thinks it looks like a beginner but the artist thinks it is a professional surfer type. Nice insult by Bob.

    Surfers would celebrate the statue and be proud of it if it were indeed representative of grom surf stoke. There is NOTHING LIKE GROM SURF STOKE. Representing that would strike at the love of surfing. Even if it were a first wave experience representation it might be well liked. What Bob and all the gardeners do not want to accept is that groms don’t surf like that and beginners don’t surf like that. If they didn’t they wouldn’t want a statue of it.

    The statue guy is falling. His board is titled in the wrong way, the body is not centered over the board right and they guy’s arms are not bent in a functional way. He is flapping. Surfers would never purchase this art.

    The artist is clearly skilled in the craft and tourists will like it, as will some nonsurfer locals. The real problem is that the art snobs like Bob want to force surfers to like it and don’t want to hear from them. It is PUBLIC art owned by the city so surfers have a right to speak about this.

  5. I enjoyed reading the remarks from John Hansen.

    I was disturbed by this week's Coast News. In my opinion, this blog has helped Encinitas, overall, a lot, as in the discussions that helped defeat Propositions A and C, and the excellent articles offered by Dietmar Rothe and Jerry Sodomka, earlier on, about the Lease Revenue Bond issue, and the fact that the City of Encinitas was not following state law regarding the Environmental Quality Act.

    The Coast News seemed to put down the blog referring to "meanspirited" comments, here. Well, there have been many of those.

    But we do not need to throw out the baby with the bathwater.

    I noticed, from watching the video that the preponderence of opinion was that the statue is not successful. The "unity" or integrity of the piece is lacking. The surfer, as one artist commented, is not a part of the wave, and he is apparently not representative of the surf culture that the sculpture was supposedly designed to represent.

  6. anon 1223,

    It not an issue of what it represents culturally for the surfers. That seems to be more of an issue of confusion between the art snobs and the artist.

    The reason why Hansen wrote that they would be willing to help FIX the statue is that the surfer is not standing in a reasonable way. That has nothing to do with the artistic content of the piece. Art critics don't have to feel bad for liking it, but they should stop being upset with surfers for not thanking them for this.

  7. The statue looks better with Bob's head on it.

  8. Once he states the statue is "well executed" you need read no further. What an idiot.


  10. I think this is sign that the surf community at large should eliminate the term "gay" from it's slang ASAP. No good is coming from it and it's sending the wrong message.

    Somebody in the news media needs to interview the local high school surf teams. Since the statue is supposed to be a teenager we should give the local teen surfers the last word.

  11. Why is the media focusing on this blog? Who cares?

  12. Its just bad art thats allAugust 06, 2007 10:25 PM

    Looks like Bob description of a beginning surfer as follows:

    "At issue is the sculpture’s depiction of a 14-year-old boy learning to surf. In surf lingo, a young inexperienced surfer is known as a grommet, grom, gremmie, grem, hodad or kook. No surfer, male or female, hasn’t gone through a kook phase when learning to surf. Every surfer was a beginner at one point — form and finesse come with time and experience and very few become legendary professionals."

    Is not the epic floater move that the artist tried to protray?

    I guess its not that great art when the artist is not able to get his message across

  13. I think the artist is so far removed from surfing that he doesn't
    realize that it is a sin to claim you are a surfer for self promotion
    especially when you aren't.

  14. You selfish surfers make me sad. You are plain wrong about the statue. I heard that Kevin Cummings approves of the statue and he is a surfer and a valuable taxpayer activist unlike the pretend surfers who pollute the leucadia blog. The statue is world class art and the artist is a real surfer unlike all of you who probably can't even stand up.

  15. someone who surfsAugust 08, 2007 10:48 AM

    The artist, not realizing how bad it would appear because he is a big
    poser, went for the "mass" appeal stance. Something that would
    appeal to the masses of art lovers worldwide. These guys were
    thinking world renowned art. Basically, he did a "David" statue and then glued a surfboard to its feet so that we could say it was a surfer. So sad. It would look right at home in Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas.

  16. Nanninga's ad hominem attack on Cardiff sculpture critics (such as myself) is absurd. For the record, I grew up in Cardiff (surfing mainly Swami's, but plenty of low tide campgrounds). Still live in Cardiff and I have to look at this reeediculous sculpture every day on my way to work. If the "message" intended was "Cardiff is for Kooks," fine. But in my opinion if that sort of money is to be spent on something that real Cardiff surfers have to look at EVERY DAY, it should not have been a sculpture of a guy falling backward in the whitewash. It should have been a guy doing a big bash, or getting a barrel or for God's sake even a longboarder in a stylish pose. Why couldn't they get a local artist, rather than one from HEMET? That is the problem right there. Hemet.


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