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Excerpt

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  • July 28 - Excerpt
    The gnarly, in surfer speak, is one form of the sublime. When a wave, or wave moment, is dangerous, terrifying, or just really heavy, it is not necessarily said to be beautiful as well. - Aaron James Surfing is full of metaphor and symbolism. Yes, we are hedonistically dancing across waves, but we are also slicing and slashing great profundities. And those beatific moments between rides when we get to think and ponder and meditate on the great mandala that is the point…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • Finnegan, aboard Alias, an Australian “surf yacht,” in Fiji, 1978. Photo Courtesy of William Finnegan. "The speed runs were dreamlike. I had never seen a wave peel so mechanically." - William Finnegan William Finnegan is the author of Barbarian Days, a memoir of an epic surfing life that won him a Pulitzer Prize in 2016. The Pulitzer Prize Board described Barbarian Days as “an old-school adventure story, and intellectual autobiography, a social history, a literary road movie,…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • February 4 - Excerpt
    "With the California drought and global climate change, it might be thought of as environmentally conscious, a recycling and repurposing of sorts." - Jamie Brisick There was a time when sneaking into a backyard to skate an empty pool was a criminal act. Today, what with the California drought and global climate change, it might be thought of as environmentally conscious, a recycling and repurposing of sorts. Tino Razo knows all about this. For the last couple of years, he…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • September 27 - Excerpt
    Eating Glass is Jocko Weyland’s most recent book, a collection of short stories, anecdotes, reflections, and ruminations that stretch from his early years in Colorado and California, to his adulthood in New York, to Europe and points beyond. There are tales of smoking weed in vans while on the search for skateboard nirvana. There are stories of selling ice cream on French beaches that ooze sunscreen and exposed flesh. Here’s how the book’s publisher, 19 / 80 Éditions, puts it:…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • March 24 - Excerpt
    I first encountered Oscar Niemeyer’s work in a book. I was staying in Rio, Barra da Tijuca, a “nouveau” neighborhood notorious for its horrible architecture. Niemeyer’s architecture had curves, abstract forms, sexiness. I learned of a home called Casa das Canoas in São Conrado, not far from Barra da Tijuca, and I went straight there, on the bus. Casa das Canoas is located up a long winding hill, which I walked up, backpack over shoulder, sweating in the heat. I passed a favela, a pair of…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • January 18 - Excerpt
    In Search of Captain Zero is Allan Weisbecker’s rollicking memoir of his two-year journey through several countries in search of his missing friend and surf buddy—“a laugh-out-loud account of territorial local surf-gang wars and all-gear, no-skill European dilettantes, of daring sea rescues and hair-raising drug-running misadventures.” I read it nearly ten years ago. I was reminded of a bit in the preface to Bob Dylan’s Tarantula, something I’ve never forgotten: “Poets and writers tell…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • December 21 - Excerpt
    I first read Caught Inside in the late nineties. The author, Daniel Duane, spends a year surfing in and around Santa Cruz, immerses himself in the culture and characters of that Nor Cal wilderness, and writes about it with a mixture of romance, irony, and stoke. I was taken by his vivid descriptions of the in-between moments, the flora and fauna that come to life only when we stop pondering our next lip bash, the introspection that’s spurred by a sky of burning oranges and savage…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • November 4 - Excerpt
    "The silvery face stretched out for a mile, a racecourse of steep, dimpled, twelve-foot wall. I dropped to the bottom, turned, and held my line." - Jamie Brisick. Excerpted from a memoir-in-progress about my life in surfing. This piece takes place in the late ‘80s, during the South African leg of the ASP world tour. Time is distorted on tour. Months of training, days of travel, and thousands of dollars in flights, rent-a-cars, and hotels can be obliterated in the course of a fleeting…
    By Jamie Brisick
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  • September 27 - Excerpt
    A few years ago while perusing the Sports section of a Barnes and Noble in New York City I came across On a Wave: A Memoir about Coming of Age and Surfing. I didn't know the book or the author, Thad Ziolkowski, but based on a few passages I’d read while standing in the aisle, I figured it worth reading. I bought it, brought it home, and devoured it in a couple of sittings. On a Wave captured surfing and the surfing life in a way that resonated deeply. It romanticized it—and…
    By Jamie Brisick
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