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9th, 2009 25
Weeks Of Surf...? (Maybe
for some people.)
"Well, I think you go for the surgery. It's not going to get any better." The young Doctor said to me on Friday. And when I say young, I mean young. Hell he looked like he was still in High School. "So, who does the surgery? " I asked, thinking that, you know, maybe his dad would do it or someone a bit older. "I do it. I do all the Ear surgery here at the Hospital." He says. I looked at him, and thought to myself. "What is he 16? How's he going to get time off from school to drill my ear canal? Maybe he gets a note from the teacher, to excuse him from class or Gym, so he can perform surgery, on messed up surfers like me with ear problems. "
I looked over at him, sitting there on his stool, smiling at me, and asked him the big question. "How long will I be out of the water?" "A month and a half anyway." He shot back. "Dammit. That's a long time." I answered. "But there's no rush to get it done right away. You can take your time and schedule the surgery for later." He assured me. "What if I wear plugs?" I asked. He just looked at me, shook his head, and smiled.
And so it begins. Another surgery on one of my ears because of my "Surfers Ear". Or as it is known in the medical profession-"Exostosis". Whatever you call it, I have it. And I suspect, there are many more like me out there who have it as well. And like me, you more than likely, have turned a blind eye to it, or a deaf ear to it. Yes the damn pun was intended. Look, I don't know how many times, I've told my friends and my kids this. Wear the Ear Plugs before you HAVE to wear them. It's not that uncomfortable. And yes you can hear with them in. And if you plan on surfing year round (which everyone and their brother does) the cold winter water surf is the worse for your ears. Trust me. I've had the surgery on my left ear. It's not fun. And what's particularly not fun is staying out of the water when there's surf. That my friends, sucks. In fact, I would say it sucks big time.
Back in the early 90's when I had the first surgery done, I was out of the water for almost 3 months. That's a long time if you're trying to maintain some kind of a relationship with the ocean. Wouldn't it be a whole lot easier to avoid having to go through painful ear surgery and miss surfing for a few months? If you don't have the correct answer to that, I can't help you. But for those who are new to this. Exostosis is some serious shit. What is it exactly? Well, it's nature's way of combating the debris and cold water that gets slammed into your head/ear canal on a typical day surfing. Or more importantly, a typical big day.
water gets trapped in your ear, and the body's way of protecting you
is, to grow a marble like substance (bone) to close off your ear canal,
so no other funky shit can get in there. Isn't it ironic? The body is
trying to protect you, and ends up messing you up. And yes, loss of
hearing is another side affect. The canal shuts down and so does any
sound trying to reach your ear drum. Sound like fun? Look don't be a
dumb ass. Wear plugs. Save yourselves from your own stubbornness. Live
to surf another day, and live to hear what's going on in the world.
Like you know...music.
Well, that's not true.
was this old girlfriend of mine, who once yelled at me after I spent
the day surfing with my dog (who surfed) and later was listening to
the Beatles on my headphones. She was mad that I didn't apply
for a job bagging groceries ( I was in between jobs). The record made
an awful scratching sound and I looked up, and there she was, with a
crazed look on her face. "Did you get that job at the supermarket?"
she yelled. "I think you scratched my Beatles Album!" I screamed
back. "I HATE The Beatles!" She yelled. "Oh my God, I'm
with a woman who actually hates the Beatles! How the hell did that happen?
Am I that blind to good looks?" I said to myself. Then she threw
this at me. "And I thought you'd stop surfing and listening to
Rock and Roll at your age (I was 25 years old at the time) and settle
down!" She yelled. "What the...???" I blurted back, before
slipping into a state of cold, harsh reality. She hates the Beatles,
she hates me surfing, and liking Rock and Roll? I am outta here! And
I was. That relationship came to a screeching halt that night in that
cozy little beach house.
There was a lot of buzz about 24 weeks of surf last week, and coming into this past week of 25 potential weeks. I say potential because, I did not really see waist high or better. I did see a few waist high waves and I shot a few. I guess it's all relevant. Was there a waist high wave this week? Yes. Was it consistent? I don't know. Maybe with some people. I don't know. I did see chest high waves on the Groms out surfing on Thursday. Heck they were in their glory. So is a waist high wave on a Grom considered a wave for the rest of us? Again, it's up to each and every individual. Look, I want to be able to sit here and write about Week 25 and have 100% total conviction in my statement. But I can't. I took some photos, you can see for yourself. I talked with people who surfed on Wednesday and they said it was bigger Wednesday.
you make the call. But I personally think, the run of 24-25,
weeks came to a dribbling stop.
for some of my weekly Global observances:
So how about Bill Clinton getting those two journalists freed from 12 years of hard labor in a prison camp in North Korea. Wouldn't you love to know what went down in that conversation? I mean...is it me, or do you guys think that Bubba and Kim Young ill shared some funky sex stories together? Is that wrong? Hell no. Those women were set free. Who cares how they did it. I say it's a feather in Obama's hat. Sending slick Willy to get them girls outta there.
And I have to admit, that Obama's allowing the use of CIA drones to take out scum bag terrorists in Pakistan is another feather in his cap as well as a nod to President Bush (who implemented the program). In case you didn't hear. Taliban Chief Warlord Baitullah Mehsud was killed by a CIA Drone this week. And finally, one more feather in his cap...Obama is fighting the release of interrogation photos by US Military. I think he's actually "getting it" when it comes to foreign policy. Don't get me wrong people. I still think he's spending us into Oblivion and he's going to bankrupt our country. But at least on the War front, and to some extent on the diplomatic front, he got lucky this week. Cash for clunkers? Healthcare? Stimulus packages? Not so much. But killing Terrorists, and protecting US Military by not releasing those photos? That's a good thing. The freeing of the two reporters in North Korea? Good thing. Be interesting to see what he does about the four hikers who are being held prisoner in IRAN. Who's going to negotiate that release? Hillary? Why the hell not not?
Big Papi says he didn't know he was taking supplements? Really
David? Reminds me of the time I got caught drinking as a teenager.
"Ma, Dad, I swear I didn't realize someone had put alcohol in my
coke! I didn't know. Ya gotta believe me!" My mother believed me.
My dad gave me a cuff off the top of my head. He knew. Just as I suspect,
some of you, will believe Ortiz while others like me...will know
the real truth. If I was Ortiz I would propose this question.
"When I was using enhancing drugs we won the World Series. Ever
since I stopped using I've been in a slump. Which would you prefer?"The
enhanced David Ortiz or the broken down Big Papi? H-mmm
just as I thought. Doctor Juice me up! I'm ready to blast a few outta
of the park!"
WOUNDED WARRIORS are coming back to Hampton Friday August 28th, 2009
at North Beach for the 2nd Annual HIT THE BEACH! Surf event. Stay tuned.
Paddle Party in 2 weeks!
Celebration of Molly Rowlee's Life will take place on August 22nd at
Please Support ALL The photographers who contribute to Ralph's Pic Of The Week every week for the last 6 years.
my friends...Surfing heals all wounds....
2009- Empty Waves and Sand Trails August 6, 2009
(Above) "Empty perfection". The small but perfect waves were so neat to watch and photograph. To see more click on the Photo. Click on image to see gallery.
August 6th, 2009 Photo By RALPH Click on the image above to see more.
More Local Madness some insane West Coast stuff and of course your favorite...The Blatant DROP-IN of The Week! All next week!
2009 PARTING SHOT- Rubber Ducky Barrel Ride
(Above) This guy was wearing a Rubber Duck
Ring around his waist and paddled out into the madness during the Big
South Swell last week in California. I think it's worthy of a Parting
shot. Summer, 2009. Photo by Via The Internet