It's about life - not "lifestyle"
THE SURFER'S JOURNAL
VOLUME ELEVEN, NUMBER TWO
|This issue has a somewhat antique avocado green cover surrounding a Rincon shot of Miki Dora, and contains a short account of a visit TSJ Publisher Steve Pezman and Mickey Munoz made to Dora some three weeks before he passed away.
The account is simply stated and a fine example of pure journalism, something which has, in general, been badly lacking in the surf genre. No attempt was made to provide anything other than the who, what, when, where, and why.
To say much more at this point would dilute the experience for the reader. I've gone on record earlier as saying Miki Dora is right up there with Duke Kahanomoku as a "legend" of surfing, and this is a subject I intend to expand in time. The word "legend" is kind of a hack thing anyway, but sometimes situations arise where no other word will do.
Trying to review all available surf magazines every month seemed like a good idea at the time we launched this website. I still think the basic motivation behind this is valid, but the result personally is a quick burnout. With so many publications coming out on a monthly basis, there really aren't enough new developments to keep the content fresh. Some readers have written that the surf media really hasn't much effect on the sport, but I don't buy that. They can be the mouthpieces of the economic engines of a multi-billion dollar industry, and they need content which is expensive to create and produce. There is a competitive rush to produce content widgets, and haste makes waste.
THE SURFER'S JOURNAL is less a geezer publication or historical logjam than a magazine which reflects a thoughtful, mature view of really all aspects of the waveriding experience. Art, architecture, craftsmanship, aquired wisdom, illuminative fiction,the widest variety of surfing equipment and interests, history, perspectives, philosophy...you name it, and you'll find it here. The magazine is affiliated with the best surfing television show ever produced. While content varies from issue to issue, which is not a bad thing in itself, every issue has at least one gem.
This makes it hard to keep looking at lesser publications, and most qualify as just that either for their lack of quality or perhaps just their focus limitations. For my money, among publications which I see frequently, THE SURFER'S PATH and LONGBOARD are the two closest in terms of consistent top quality content and production values.
Back to the story about Dora. This is one of those haunting things which come our way once every blue moon. I read it several times over a couple of days. Maybe it's just me, but the article seems like a Rosetta Stone for the Dora experience. Was this intended? Crafted to do so? I don't know. I've been a writer long enough to have seen simple words meant to convey one thing actually light up a whole different area. Sometimes I've had that pointed out to me by others. In the end, Pezman's intentions are irrelevant I guess, given what he did come up with.
This article is, I think, the tombstone of the Youth of Surfing.. This isn't a bad thing. Youth passes in real life, adjustments must be made to continue in a healthy manner, and if anyone wants to live in denial there are plenty of other magazines who can sell you the fantasy.
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