The Simple Life.
By Dan Dobbin.
Okay, I admit it. I’m a hypocrite, a contradictory mess, a whited sepulchre.
I look at the middle aged demographic of bodyboarding in Australia and kind of cringe.
I want to be excited by an energy of freshness and youthful exuberance and renewal permiating through the sport. I don’t get the wistful pining for a past golden age that seems to seep from the pores of so many that spend their time and energy adding to seemingly never ending piles of old boards in the garage.
“I’ve got an 8-TX in every colour”.
“I’ve got every model of Mach 7-7 ever made”.
“Finally scored my Unicorn”.
An yet here I am, a 42 year old riding a 24 year old Mach-25 every chance I can at my favourite reef. I am thee at whom I cringe.
A fallacious charlatan.
The Mach-25 came to me by way of the wonderful man who does all the design work for Infoamed, my brother from another mother Billy.
Storage space is currently limited at his abode, so a bundle of 10 or so old decks was deposited in my back shed with the instructions to ride and enjoy whatever I wanted from the collection.
When you’ve been surfing the same reefs for a few decades, the thrill can get a bit blunted at times, so I’ve been keeping it fresh by working my way through the pile on the fun days.
Now these are far from pristine beauties. Chunked out rails, roadmap decks, to much rocker, a Turbo 3 with a machete like chop through 1/3 of a rail and the deck. The Mach-25 has a bubble which surfaces and takes up about half the right side of the deck when I leave it somewhere warm for too long, before disappearing again once it’s cool.
So I’ve been treating them mean. No leash, chasing them along the inside shelf if I don’t make a wave, riding them straight up onto the jump rock at the end of a session. Great fun.
The thing with all of these boards though is that they’re simple. No contours, no nose bulbs, no stringers, no channels, no funky tails. But they work. The Mach-25 is the fav so far because it’s stiffer and carries a bit of volume.
Which brings me to the point of this little ditty; perhaps that’s all we really need?
There’s WiFly tails and quad vent channels and torsion stringers and Scifive systems and patterned deck contours and other “innovations” freely available to the cashed up customer.
Now don’t get me wrong, the innovation and development of boards over the years has helped fuel vastly improved performance levels for both recreational and elite riders.
However, for the workaday recreational user, a nice simple board at a reasonable price point is probably all that’s needed.
A nice minimalist sled.
Polypro core, a bit of thickness, Surlyn slick around the $300 price point and I’d be all in.
So what say you out there in the boogieverse?
Are you a bells and whistles kinda girl, or are you all about that simple life?