Everyone Loves Booging!
By Dan Dobbin.
Last week Jon Snow Aegon of Houses Targaryen and Stark, Sixth of His Name, King of the Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, and Protector of the Realm took up the quill to defend the honour and integrity of bodyboarders everywhere.
An ill thought through caption quip on Stab magazine’s Instagram which read “They say three’s a crowd, but thankfully we don’t count prone parties” accompanying a video of an aquatic surfer, booger, surfer Ménage à trois’ at Honolua Bay raised the hackles of many. (Two and a half men might have been funnier?)
The insinuation that boogerpeople just don’t count and should be considered potential fodder for fading cut a little to close for a generation raised under the spectre and oftentimes implementation of verbal and physical abuse for the trivial matter of the craft they choose to waveslide on.
Particularly when this tyranny was often fermented and encouraged by editorials and articles in surfing publications.
As is the way with social media, the comments section under the now infamous post was full of nasty messages and directed hate, although not in the direction one would expect from a website who’s prime audience is supposedly prodominately shortboarders;
It was into this space that the true heir to the Iron Throne pen his response, choosing instead to respond not with vitriol, but with a measured and clear head call for peace and goodwill amoungst all wave sliders;
“I believe peaceful action is required by both the bodyboarding and surfing community to stamp out these forms of discrimination. If you see it, please call it out for what it is”.
Sound. Uncontroversial. A plea for respect and understanding amoungst all ocean goers.
( Read here https://infoamed.com/2021/03/23/dear-stab-mag-do-better/)
And yet someway, somehow, instead of quelling the fires of controversy, this non-controversial article somehow inflamed them even further, but in a weird, weird way.
Stabs response was to profess their now neutrality in the boarder wars and respect for boog charging whilst also standsplaining to bodyboarders where different types of surf craft should be ridden;
And then the weird got weirder as the largest trafficked surfing website in the world “Beachgrit” entered the chat to stand on the metaphorical side of bodyboarding and defend the idea that picking on people because of their craft choice just ain’t cool.
The weirdest weirdness of it all is that all three parties seem to be in agreement that bodyboarding should be respected and is fucking cool!
And it’s not just the two biggest surfing website’s in the world throwing out mad props and double Shaka to the Boog lords and lordettes.
In the recent episode of the endlessly creative and entertaining surfing podcast ” Ain’t that Swell” entitled “West is best” hosts Jed Smith and Vaughn Blakey waxed lyrical with surfers Creed McTaggart and Shaun Manners about the skills of the Three Amigos, Finnegan, Humphreys and Blackwell, the otherworldly watermanship of Ryan Hardy at the Box and North Point, and just generally how hard the bodyboarding fraternity charge.
(Listen here around the 30 min mark https://chtbl.com/track/553726/traffic.megaphone.fm/DMN2060659434.mp3?updated=1614647036)
It seems you can’t swing a wet springy around your head these days without hitting a surfer or surfing media outlet trying to heap praise on lidding and extolling just how great bodyboarding is!
But what does this victory mean for the future of Bodyboarding?
Without the Hydro finz sized chip on our shoulders and burning desire to prove surfers wrong in their applied scorn where do we go?
Do we still need to keep charging heavy waves, pioneering new air moves and just generally being fucking hellmen and hellwomen and hellnonbinarygenderfluid legends to keep our position as lauded water masters ?
Or have we earned the right to rest on our laurels and instead enjoy the fruits of success by having middle aged fun surfing comfortable waves in comfortable wave pools?
Much to ponder…..
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