Anybody remember this incredible ad for Guiness beer? It came out in 1999, and either I wasn’t watching enough TV, or it didn’t play in America, but I missed it completely. Saw it for the first time about five years ago, and just this moment found out that in a 2002 London Times poll it was voted the best TV ad of all time, to which I say cheers and huzza. If you’ve never seen it, raise a glass, click and enjoy.
“Bob Evans Means Business,” the latest History of Surfing post, got things started last week followed by a wonderful tribute to Evans by none other than Nat Young. On social media, I probably paid too much attention to the fact that Evans, due to a near-fatal bout with bowel cancer as a young man, spent the rest of his years wearing a colostomy bag. On the other hand, as Nat pointed out, Evans’ career drive, as well as his appreciation for life, seemed closely tied to his having cheated death. And to be clear, Evans wasn’t just athletic and creative and successful—he was A-Grade suave. A beautifully dressed, impeccably-mannered player and bon vivant. With a bag of waste tucked into the waistband of his trousers. I find this incredibly uplifting. To you, Bob Evans, I raise another glass of Guinness.
My mood improves any time I’m in the presence of Kim Mearig, even from a thousand miles away and only by means of photos, words, and video. Here is Kim’s just-posted interview, and here is her remixed video. The shot of her pulling that trademark Channel Islands twin-fin out of the car makes me want to surf like nothing else I’ve seen this month.
Dru Harrison also got an interview page, which reminded me of a great essay he wrote for SURFER in 1969, titled “Limbo,” about the head trip that is contest surfing. Dru, from Hermosa Beach—he went to my high school in fact, go Mustangs!—was a child phenom; barely 16 when he took 8th in the 1966 World Surfing Championships. So even though he was still a teenager when he wrote “Limbo” he already seemed like a seasoned vet. Re-reading the essay, I was struck by how closely Dru’s words from almost 50 years ago describe contest surfing in 2017. You can be true to yourself as a surfer and a competitor, but it is a fine and difficult line to walk. Always has been.
I raise a third and final glass of Guinness to you, Dru Harrison.
Kicking off the new week with the 1964 World Championships, and we’ll see where it goes from there.
Thanks, everybody, for supporting the site, and by all means hit me back with comments, ideas, typo fixes, and any unusual Scrabble words using the letter “J.”
[Dru Harrison photo by Rich Wilkin]