The Plastic Fantastic.
By Dan Dobbin.
The constant bombardment of swell and funkey winds that have plagued the East coast of Australia over the start of this year mean that some strange nooks and crannies have been explored in the hunt for waves. It was on one such crackpot mission to a highly fickle but sometimes epic deep water bombie that I saw a startling sight. Emerging after the spit of a below sea level dredger came a streak of orange, black and yellow. As I begin the paddle out the mystery shredder lofts an invert to air rev in perfect form out of a six foot bowl.
Who da fark?
Reaching the line up there’s something oddly familiar about the perfectly cylindrical yellow head powering its way into another 8 foot keg that’s just throwing onto the almost dry ledge.
“Lego Man!” I shout.
“Fuck off you meatbag cunt” he replies as he whips a critical spin centimetres from the shockwave before disappearing into the barrel for the length of the reef.
He paddles back out like a steam train, snorting and snarling, straight past us without making eye contact and ten metres deeper.
“Oi, Lego man”
The deep black wells for eyes slowly shift up from under the pencil thin yet somehow still intimidating eyebrows.
“I said fuck off’… “
We sit in uncomfortable silence as the ocean goes still at the peak of the tide, minutes pass…
“Sorry mate” he finally mumbles “I’ve just done anything I can to avoid any contact with the boogin’ world these last few years, but that’s not your issue”.
“Yer no worries”.
The flat spell stretches on.
“Look, the truth is I got burned pretty hard in the back end of the bodyboarding scene and I’m still carrying a lot of resentment” he offers.
I nod, indicating that I’m listening but I don’t prod.
“You ever watch the APB tour comps? “ he asks.
“Yer I loved them! Bodyboardings peak competitive and commercial success I reckon’ “.
“Wanna guess who was pulling all the strings, doing all the organising and working all the finances behind the scenes? Yer me! Alex Leon and that other bald Billy Idol wannabe bloke that talks like he’s been hocking gack 24/7 were just the figure heads mate. I built that bloody tour with my own farkin’ scooped hands, busted my arse to make it what it was and then they farkin’ shafted me mate, straight out the backdoor, no recompense, no thanks, nothin’ ”
“Shit hey” I say, but the tone of my reply must have conveyed my scepticism.
“It’s farkin’ true mate. All those rumours about Old mate bailing out his company with the collateral the tour had built up and leavin’ the tour broke were just a cover for what really happened…for what happened to me! “
“Yer? “ Now I’m generally interested.
“Yer, look the truth is that at the peak of the tour, the world was changing and I got caught in the meat grinders. You ever heard of the term ‘Greenwashing’ ?
“Companies and organisations pretending to care about the environment while still carrying on with damaging environmental practices, right? ” I offer.
“Farkin’ got it in one bucko. The sponsors and government bodies I was working with started putting demands to us that we needed to make the tour seem more ‘sustainable’ and ‘ecologically responsible’. They didn’t actually want us to do anything about it though because, let’s be honest you gotta fly on a farkin’ airplane, catch a farkin’ bus or drive a farkin’ car to any of these places if you’re going to visit any of the places they shell out taxpayer dollars to try to attract tourists into. Nar, they just wanted us to give the impression that we were doing somethin’ ”.
“Basically I told ‘em all ta’ get farked. You don’t have to tell me how these bad petrochemical cunts are, they farkin’ raised me….anyway I said if we were goin’ ta go green we were gunna do it properly. No bullshit, no marketing, properly sustainable. Use the 100% recyclable boards I developed twenty years ago. Obviously they didn’t want to hear that, and having a great lump of plastic as your main man when petrochemicals are public enemy number one isnt a great look, so it was the Ides of March all over again. Stab, stab, stab, me a pariah and out the backdoor”.
“Wait, what did you say about recyclable boards?”
“Nothin’ new mate. I developed a way to make boards out of seaweed and recycled bottles twenty farkin’ years ago, way before that Frog Pride mob started mucking around with crunched up PE or that Brazzo bloke across the ditch started knocking out Cork boards”.
“Really? Why the hell are we still riding these foam suckers then?” I challenge
“Not real bright are ya sonny” He replies. “Think about it… Mez has got his Broady factor all set up to knock out PP monstrosities, same with that AGIT mob in Thailand or Taiwan or somewhere. I come along with me seaweed and bottle beauties and the farkers suppress me, threaten the mags they’ll pull their advertising’, tell the surf shops they won’t sell ‘em boards if anyone breathes a word of me break through…packa farkwits the lot of em”.
“Are you riding one now? “
“Course I farkin’ am. I really dialled in the specs when I was keeping ‘Ours’ on the downlow in the 90’s, but I used to just call it ‘Mine’. I used to let Wazza Feinbeer surf it because he charged almost as hard as me. As soon as I left because that place wasn’t heavy enough to keep me interested, those farkin’ pussy Bra girls moved, changed the name and blew it up to the world.”
“Is that where you scored that cover of Riptide? ” I replied.
“Mate, that cover was bullshit. That wave was farkin’ 20 times as big as what they printed. They shrank it down and blew my size up because they thought no one would believe I’d scored a keg that big. Farkin’ waffles. Anyway that was how I ended up running the mag”.
“Whatdaya mean running the mag?” I prompted.
“After they ran that shot all photoshopped and fucked up I went in to the Morrison media offices and was going to give ’em a farkin’ floggin’, that soft Ricky Bannister cunt and his pansy offsider Nick Long. To save their arses they offered me complete editorial control of the mag. I got to be the king maker in Ozzie bodyboarding, while they surfed Dbah all day and spent nights chasing poon at The Playroom all night”.
“Bullshit!” I challenged.
“Bullshit nothing meatbag. I was the one that saw the talent of that new generation of Ozzie kids coming through , Hardy, Kingy, Player and started pushing them through the mag. I made their careers! I ghost ran that mag for years until I got bored of it in the mid 2010’s. Guess what happened then? Farkin thing folded like a cheap lawn chair didn’t it!”.
“So you’re telling me that on top of running the world tour, inventing sustainable boards and changing heavy waves, you’re also a writer?”
“Ever read a Tim Winton book? Well you haven’t because I…”
“Stop, stop fucking hell I get it. Righto, I’ve got a challenge for you. I run a website called Infoamed…”
“Yer I’ve seen it, it’s farkin rubbish, full of grammatical errors and pussy content. Don’t get me started on that gibberish podcast you do with those other dead shits. Not a novel thought between the three of ya, embarrassing really”.
“I was saying” I interrupt ” I challenge you to come and write for me. If all this shit your saying is true, prove it. Pony up and sling me some content. Whatever you want to say, open forum”.
“Hmm I’ll think about it, Boogin has got farkin’ soft, bunch of devon headed pansies with fat guts who just want to ‘have fun” on “ boogie boards” . That’s not what this is all about. It’s about farkin’ chargin’ and ripping and getting stuck in. Cunts need reminding of that fa’ sure”.
“Ummm speaking of devon heads, what’s happened up top there? Wasn’t your catchphrase ‘It’s all about the hair!? I prod, noting Lego man’s naked noggin.
” Mate it’s not what you farkin’ think. I’m not follicly challenged like baldy Stewbags or that wannabe joker Kingy. I was surfing 15 foot cyclops when a wave spat that hard it blew me do clean off! Anyway, this is me meatbag, I’ll be in touch you softcock”.
With that he turned and powered into a below sea level drainer. My last vision of him was of a silhouetted figure whipping through a 720 air reverse against the rising sun.
A few days later an email popped up in the Infoamed mailbox entitled “ATTENTION SOFTCOCK, RUN THIS OR YOU’RE A DEADSHIT CUNT LIKE THE REST OF ‘EM”
To be continued…..