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things we never did

Took a girl surfing

Why would a bloke do that? Where’s the value? Most times on a trip anywhere the only place to change into the board shorts was in the car then the used gear was chucked over in the back seat to be retrieved a few days later when it was time to go home. Plus it would take a girl of sterling capabilities to put up with the issuance of noxious odours resulting from too many meat pies eaten on the route between Crescent Head and Cabarita .. pictured here courtesy of Jesse Little and Swellnet.

Packed our own wax

Four rabid young wave-hunters in the car, three because they don’t have one themselves meaning that the bloke who owns the wheels should be flush enough to have a few blocks lying around in the boot. This is what friends were for. Giving.

Learnt to cook

Matches were for lighting cigarettes not campfires and food was sourced in country supermarkets when a man could scarf a pint of chocolate milk and two cold meat pies and not having to worry about CCTV  cameras recording his every furtive move.

Shopped for clothes

Nobody catered for the youth with two-bob in his pocket and in need of a new pair of boardshorts – this is why the clever lads only ever took out girls who had a brother the same size, so easy to strip a clothesline when you knew his gear fitted. Or be like my younger brother  .. he went to gym so he could fit into my boardshorts because I’ve got thighs like Johhny Sattler.

Sats .. go the rabbits

Used deodorant

It wasn’t invented, that’s why, and Johnson’s Baby Powder was only used to ease a body’s passage into an hard-edged rubber wetsuit, not that it helped as certain sensitive areas of a man’s lower regions suffered severe chafing after three hours chasing winter sets at Bell’s Beach.

Threw away t shirts

Not only that, but washing them in anything but cold water was deemed a bad move because, as we all know, warm water softens fabric and every rip and tear is likely to be exacerbated to the degree where the hole in the left armpit meets the tear in the right. This was unacceptable. Ask Terry T-Shirt. He wore rags with great and everlasting success.

Wore shoes

Sandals yes, thongs? Fuck yes. Sandshoes were ok as long as they had some green mould on the uppers and desert boots were only condoned if one of your feet had been savaged by a great white and the stitches hadn’t been removed.

Drank spirits

That meant you had the money to buy them, which we didn’t, and if someone did and was seen scarfing down a double Johnny Walker then his reputation suffered regardless of the quality of the lovely hanging off his elbow at the Astra at the time.

Played tennis

Seriously, who plays a sport where shoes, socks, shorts and shirt all have to be clean and white? Unnatural. Like cricket. At least you got to wear an old South Sydney footy jumper at touch football on Sundays at Moore Park when the onshore was blowing.

Wore a tatto

Being seen with one of those on you, anywhere, in a Sydney pub frequented by merchant seamen or RAN navvies meant you were in danger of (1) copping a severe beating for being a pretender or (2) being asked to do something entirely out of the ordinary  .. if you get my gist.

Used hair oil.

There was only one man guilty of this   … indecency. Name of Cochran. Known as Andy.


In what? Stocks and bonds? The only investments the early lads were interested in was what came out of the waterside bond stores in the back of various vehicles known to run small business operations beachside on Sundays.


Rabbit Bartholomew wants to be a politician. Nat Young once wanted to be a politician. If this isn’t enough to convince you of the vagaries of human nature and the slow decline of the surfer then you’re not paying attention.

Cleaned their cars

Ask yourself when was the last time you took a look under your bed. Same for your car. Besides, a mess in the floor wells and boot defeats rust, this is a scientific fact. Check with the Ponds Institute.

Ate cold fried rice

Any man women or boy who leaves a Chinese restaurant with uneaten fried rice in a doggie bag needs to be ex-communicated. There is no excuse. Nectar of such sublimity should never be re-heated.

这是一种罪过 (work it out)

Got so pissed we missed the weekend early

How is it possible for a man to lose his animal instincts to be first out? What possible excuse is there for not stroking out in the gloom of pre-dawn and scoring? Booze is what. Weekends are for surfing, drinking large quantities of alcohol are for the working week. Priorities. Right?

Took school seriously

The only lesson to be learnt from going to school is how not to and get away with with it. This helps in most aspects of professional life, consequences are to be avoided. Refer voting.

Listened to good advice

The only good advice worth listening to is from the the bloke who knows how to sit inside the pack, catch all the sets and not offend the locals. Good luck in finding him.

Drank wine

Ladies like wine. Your mother likes wine. White-linen restaurants like to serve ladies who drink wine. Winos drink wine. Wine comes in four gallon casks. Is this where you want to be?

Dressed for dinner

It’s one thing to be hungry, another to dress up as if it’s going to make the food taste better. Surfers understand this dichotomy. Surfers are wise. Discriminating. Worldly.

Pity there aren’t many left.

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