Archive for July, 2011

If you missed Part 1: Gearing Up click here. 

As we motored out of the Santa Barbara Harbor my apprehension quickly turned into excitement and awe.  I had never been on a boat out of the harbor before and I have never been on a real sailboat. There I was first mate on a two man excursion to hopefully score some worth while surf.

Cit immediately began teaching me the names of all the different parts of the boat most of which I forgot leading to his frustration later when asked to do something.  I did actually learn a lot.  I had three main duties: Cooking in the Galley, Operation of the Hook (anchor) and keeping our coarse with the till (long stick used for steering).   Occasionally I had to help raise and lower the sails as well and propeller kelp detail.

The wind was nonexistent for the first 20 miles and it is around a 35 mile shot to the surf spot.  We got a late start no shoving off till after one.  Due to the calm conditions we had nice smooth seas but no wind thus having to use the small out board motor and only making a progress of 5.5 knots an hour.  Slow and steady wins the race.

On the way out we passed buoys laden with seals barking at each other.  The funny thing is I can hear those same seals at night from the patio of my apartment.  It was nice to finally see them up close.  There were all these tourists on kayaks sitting around the buoy staring at them as if they had never seen a seal before.

After about twenty minutes Cit handed me the till and said keep our course on a certain compass reading that I am not going to give out.  It was a warm summer day making visibility only about 15 miles or so thus you could not see the islands allowing navigating by sight to be impossible.  I grabbed the till and at first it was very hard to keep the boat on course with out constantly meandering in a serpentine motion, pissing off Cit.  After about 30 minutes I got into a groove.

We passed the rigs and let me say they are not nearly as nice when you get up close to them.  Most are just weathered boxes on stilts with cranes hanging off them.  I don’t know why I thought there would be more to it then that.  I think I have over glamorized the oilrig life style.  After being near them up close it seems a very solemn life for only the most salty or hardened of souls.  Apparently the majority of them all line up perfectly when you are next to them and it is because they pump along an under water mountain range that runs the channel.  All I know is that I will have a greater appreciation of the rigs next time I stare off at them from the shore.

About 20 miles out Cit yelled “there are dolphins coming up the bow”.  He took the till and let me go up to the front.  I hung off the mast’s suspension cables over the bow and watched and listened to the purposes as they playfully showed us how more capable they are then us at sea travel.  The sun was shinning and the water was the clearest dark blue I have ever seen.  I could not see land on either side of us and I was enjoying the spray on my face as it splashed up over the bow and then trickled down my bare chest sending exhilarating chills through out my body.

I began laughing out loud.  Two months ago I wanted to kill myself over a woman.  A WOMAN! What a waste that would have been.  If it were not for her I would not have even been standing there with the realization of just how wonderful life really is.  The world is an amazing place and I think we get bogged down by life too often and forget all the awe-inspiring things it has to offer.  Two months ago if someone told me I would be hanging off the bow of a sailing vessel playing with dolphins I would have said he were crazy.

There are just so many moments in my life where I just keep expecting to wake from this dream I am living, but I never do.  While everyone else was at Emma Wood getting all grumpy and annul this is what I was doing.  Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.  Sorry I had to just chuckle to myself a little more.

 The King of Beers

At our slow pace, even when we were able to get the sails up we still only were averaging 6 knots, making the journey about a 4-5 hour peregrination.  For this duration Captain Intoxication (why he was garnished with this name) kept cracking and handing me beers.  “When in Rome”, plus it made the trip go by much faster.  By the time we got near the Island both of us were ten beers in each and thrashed.  As Cit put it “I may be a drunk captain, but I am a good captain”.  Honestly the guy really did know his stuff.  I was impressed.  Heck we did not die.

Unlike the rigs the Islands are a magnificent sight up close.  Most consist of sheer hundred plus foot cliffs made of black, white, pink, yellow, brown and red rocks, depending on the mineral type.  Some of the cliffs fall right down into the ocean, while others guard black cobblestone or black sand beaches with no other disturbance then the birds. Atop the cliffs are miles of tall yellow grass, cypress trees and just open space.  The whole area is a protected National Park allowing for no development.

There is wild life everywhere.   Seals swim in large packs, twenty or greater and jump out of the water in unison similar to dolphins.  Purposes swim around, sea otters, jelly fish and birds, tons and tons of sea birds of every variety.  It makes you think that is probably what most of the California coast looked like 200 years ago before man ruined it.  It was breath taking.

 Smugglers Cove

We pulled up at a “safe” anchorage, by the Islands standards.  All of them stick out in the middle of the ocean, where the weather is super fickle and all are uninhabited meaning no man made ports.  As Cit put it “we are pirates out here”.  Smugglers was a small cove semi protected by high cliffs on each side of it.  In the middle was this impressive rock/sand mix beach.  Up the hill from the beach was an old Olive Orchard that sill looked rather tame for not being manned in fifty years.  Cit said there was a ranch house up above the orchid as well.  Initially we were going to row into the beach and check it out, but it was already pretty late when we got there.  Then I cooked up some Rose Mary Chicken and mixed vegetables in tomato sauce.  After eating that and washing it down with the bottle of Merlot we were exhausted from the journey, good and drunk and with waning light decided it was better to chill on deck.

I passed out shortly after.  I awoke sometime in the night freezing cold after getting thrown off the seat I feel asleep in onto the deck.  Still drunk I crawled below deck climbed into my bunk and wrapped myself in my comforter.  In that position I stayed till morning.  Getting drunk off beer is a big mistake, probably my worst handover next to tequila.  Cit and I were definitely hurting from the previous night’s festivities.  The surf was on as we could see 3-4 foot south swells rolling past us and crashing onto the rock covered beach.

We hoisted the anchor, which by the way is a pain in the ass to do manually.  It takes so much strength to get the chain off the bottom and it is heavy as hell.  Not to mention it burns the fuck out of your hands.   We let out 75 feet of chain.  Hook detail fucking sucks and now I know why it is the first mate’s job.  Dropping anchor is a bit easier.  All you have to do is steady the line with your hand as it falls into the water to make sure the chain does not pile up on itself.  Finally it was off to the surf spot.

Stay tuned for Part III: The surfing, Island Adventuring and the Trip Home.

The rigs falling in line

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I am going have to postpone this week’s UCB a day or so to write about a “most excellent adventure” to quote Bill and Ted. I was lucky to survive the whole ordeal actually, as my captain put it “if _________ happens you probably wont survive”.  This may take more then one part.  I literally have only been on dry land for a few hours and still feel like I am on a boat, not to mention the fact that I have had in the last three days a total of 10 hours of sleep and being it is my roommate’s last night living in Lisanti Land I promised we would go out to the Wild Cat tonight.  I am going to need a beauty nap at some point before that happens.  We will see how far I get.

A Sailing Trip, with a little bit of surfing and way too much drinking

Being temporarily unemployed is a wonderful thing.  Sure not having a ton of available cash is a bit of a bummer, but having oodles of free time is priceless.  Actually I have been putting a few applications out all over town and have gotten a bite or two, one being very prestigious for an aspiring chef.  I even have some cash work going at the moment as well, but those are blogs for some other time.

Wednesday morning I got a text from an acquaintance of mine who incidentally has a boat and owes me a tad bit of money for some ding work (what else is new, the ding repair business never changes).  “Are you free the next few days” the text read.  I have gotten these texts before and that means one thing: Island trip.  What am I talking about?  The Channel Islands of course, those south swell blocking curses of land that span the length of the coast line of Santa Barbara keeping it flat all summer long.

Those Islands don’t just block the swell they also funnel it in and enhance it at certain surf locales.  This person whom I am going to call Captain Intoxication, Cit for this blogs purposes knows the place like the back of his hand and will stay anonymous as will the actual location where we surfed.  This is to both protect the spot and keep either one of us from being banned from going back.  Also there will be no photos either for the same reason.  Sorry folks, but to make up for it I will try and be as descriptive as possible.

Captain Intoxication (Cit) and His Almost Sea Worthy Vessel

 I have been on stand by all summer long for one of his voyages.  Each time I have been bumped for his regular first mate he has been cruising there with for years.  Finally when I got the call I jumped on it.  I had to move a few things around, but I was not about to let this rare opportunity slip from my grasp.  Cit I found out has a kid on the way in November so life may not grant him the freedom to cut away as much in the future.

Certain influences in my life, those I value rather highly warned me more then once to stay clear of Cit.  I hate having a negative predisposition towards another person on behalf of a third party.  Cit has always been decent to me and never really given any reason not to be trusted.  I needed a pick ax for my garden and he lent me one. I have fixed boards for him and he almost always paid up front.  As far as I was concerned I was willing to entrust my life to him despite the misgivings of others.

After getting to know Cit over the last 48 hours I must say I found him to be an alright guy and I am proud to call him an acquaintance no longer in exchange for friend.  I pulled up to his slip at the docks with two boards (5’11 J7 round pin/5’10 J7 short board), sleeping gear, food for at least 5 meals (frozen chop meat/chicken breast, angel hair pasta, sauce, olive oil, canned vegetables, cookies, granola bars, 4 plums, bacon, dozen eggs, swiss cheese, 1 tomato, garlic, bananas, which went overboard cause of bad luck, a loaf of slice bread and two cloves of garlic, I was after all in charge of the galley), an old, but freshly sharpened santoku knife, 2 gallons of water, two wetsuits and my warmest cloths.  In addition I took along a change of clothes, a camera (never left my bag for fear of Cit throwing it over board), Oliver Twist (yes I am still reading it, I have been busy so get off my back), a bottle of merlot and sun block.  I don’t know why I felt the need to jot down the contents of my provisions, but it may prove beneficial later on in the story.

The Boat

 She floats, was the first thought that came into my mind and truth be told the 25-foot sailing sleuth was although beat up far better then anything I expected.  Once a few years back some friends and I stupidly believed we could get to the Ranch from Gaviota State Beach in an old beat up rubber ducky that was supposedly “water tight” with an electric motor that barely clocked the little boat 4 knots an hour.  This is definitely a good blog for some other time, but long story short we ended up deflating about 5 miles in and had to paddle the vitiate craft in on our backs.  It was a mistake I did not want to repeat again, but left me with low expectations for his boat.

The mast looked solid, the jib was good.  It had a small but adequate two bunk cabin, new radio, GPS, an out board motor, rescue skiff, a small two gas burner range with a sink and life jackets.  She needed a coat of paint, but besides that was more then sea worthy and in the harbor looked rather impressive.  Let me tell the reader that 25 feet is very small when you’re in the open ocean taking swells over the bow.

We stowed all the gear, tied up the sails, battened down the hatches, filled the water and gas tanks and shoved off.  Look for more on the voyage there and adventures from the island in Part II.

The Channel Islands

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June was quite the month. We had a few shitty wind swells, a few shitty south swells, but overall very little to get excited about.  As a matter of fact I think I have been more excited by watching Alfie switch sleeping spots all day.  June was also a break out month for me.  It was the month I stopped feeling sorry for myself and began surfing again instead of blaming it for all my problems.  That being the case I made the most out of every day of surf we had.  Here is how the month of June broke down.  By the way I have not done write ups on April or May so you will probably see those in the next few weeks.  Don’t forget to visit the Surflog to read about my surfing and life chronicled journal style everyday.

Number of Surf Sessions: 18
Days Surfed: 17
Time Spent in the Water: 27 hours
Number of Waves Surfed: 387
Waves per Hour: 14

Spots Surfed:
New Jetty – 5
Santa Clara River Mouth – 3
Stanleys – 2
Emma Wood – 2
C Street – 1
Zuma Beach – 1
Leo Carrillo – 1
Gold Coast – 1
Dredge – 1
Rincon – 1

Top 3 Sessions

3. 6/7/11 AM Session: 2-4+ft, Zuma Beach
Time in Water: 2hrs
Waves Surfed: 38
I love Zuma.  Its one of my favorite waves in LA.  Sure its nothing more then heavy closed out glorified shore break, but I think by now everyone should know that is right up my ally.  Did I mention the backwash is sometimes bigger then the wave your paddling for?  The place can amplify just about any south swell in the water.  I checked Ventura Harbor early and it was looking doable but rather meager for my personal taste.  I knew my buddy Kevin was going down there and gave him a call to hitch a ride.  We cruised to Zuma and it was chest to head high and super punchy.  The wind was a bit onshore but it looked boostable to me.  As usual when I am at Zuma my froth meter goes berserk.  I tore on my suit and was out there for a boost and barrel fest.  Then after an hour it glassed off, but  got super lully.  Still there were some choice nugs to sink your teeth into.  I was having a ball till some local decided to sit right on top of me even though there were plenty of peaks for everyone. I tried to paddle away but the dude kept following me.  Finally I was just plain over it, stuck a backside air reverse and called it a day.  Stick that in your pipe and smoke it angry local with all your super cool fly aways.

2. 6/5/11 PM Session: 3-5ft, Dredge
Time in the Water: 2.5hrs
Waves Surfed: 34
I got out of church and had four missed calls from all my Ventura friends.  I knew there was going to be some minor bump up in wind swell but I just figured I would nonchalantly cruise down to Emma Wood on high tide.  I called back my boy Ryan and he was frothing on Dredge.  Ryan rarely is stoked on anything so if he was pumped I knew I had to get down there.  Sure enough it was solid chest to head high with the occasional bigger set with very nice long right hand lines.  Some were easily peeling for 75 to 100 yards, an anomaly for Dredge.  There were about six guys on it and some slight cross chop from the SW wind.  I got out there and for the first hour it was a bit bumpy and just when I was about to bag it the wind died out and things glassed off.  For the next hour and a half it was a playground.  I had at least four that I nailed no less then nine turns on.  I would have surfed longer but I was exhausted between all the paddling, surfing and walking back up the beach.  What a great day of surfing.

1. 6/14/11 AM Session: 3-5ft, New Jetty

Time In Water: 3hrs
Waves Surfed: 35

A serious lack of motivation had me slacking this morning.  A small jump up on the buoys had me give it a shot.  Next thing I know Im standing on the dunes looking a super fun combo swell peaks at New Jetty, glassy, head high and only a few guys out.  Well it did not take me much time to throw on my suit and jump in the water.  I was joined by my friends Bobby B and Gordo, both happily married with kids, thus helping to restore my faith in relationships.  All I can say is I had a ball and surfed amazing as well.  What a session.  Everyone was just going off and super stoked to be out there.  As depressed as I was on both Sunday and Monday that is how stoked I was today.  A good surf always puts things in perspective.


Talk about excitement. Nobody knows how to have a good time quite like Alife.

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Eight years ago I sold my soul for a measly $100 a gig playing with a discombobulate excuse for a jam band called Wooden Satellite. The name itself was a god dam oxymoron.  I mean if you built a satellite out of wood it is surely going to burn up in the atmosphere.  That is what for the most part happened in our case.


The group was myself on the saxophones, a guitarist, drummer and bassist.  Practices were spent with a three way drunken fight among the three while I blew Coltrane on my horn.  The fights always ended with a good old fashion bong rip session.  It did not take long before I stopped going to practices.


The gigs were a joke always at dive bars, but they had a following and I always got paid.  Finally it all ended because we lost a very lucrative running gig at a local bar. The three idiots did not want to pay their bar tab.  I felt like I was in the movie Blues Brothers sans Aykroyd and Belushi and the talented players.  Lets loose a $400 a week gig over a $100 bar tab real fucking smart fellas.  Rip another hit.


It was at that moment that I vowed never to pick up my saxophone in pursuit of pleasing the ears of others, who did not deserve to hear what I had to offer.  Fast foward eight years later.  You can only begin to imagine the gigantic internal conflict I was faced with when asked by my friend Ken to get up on stage with his solo project and blow.


I had been playing my horns regularly again and thought why not take a risk?  I spend more time then not preaching to everyone here to go out and lay it all on the line.  Since I hate hypocrisy I made the decision to put myself out there vulnerable for all to see.


What the fuck am I talking about you ask.  Well as most of you know by now I have been working with a small nonprofit theatre company here in town called Proximity.  Last night we had a fundraiser at this quaint music venue here in downtown Santa Barbara called Soho.  Initially I figured I would just go for support but then found myself up on stage with three saxes around me just like old times.


The music as Ken put it was “Electro-Funk-Pop” a very unlikely combination, but when all was said and done it came out awesome.  I had a few very close friends show up to the gig and the room was plenty packed with all sorts of cool cats out to support a good cause. I showed up and did my usual pre performance routine.  I put myself in a corner away from everyone where I could get in the zone and be alone with my thoughts.  Focus on the task at hand so to speak.


Normally I would have had a drink or two to set my mind at east, but I promised Ken no drinking before the show.  Then it was time to take the stage and my mind was a complete blank.  I knew what needed to be done and I was completely focused like the pinball wizard.  I was just a side man, but the thing about my playing is once I get going I never seem to be able to stay in that role


I looked out at the audience just as we were about to get started and I remembered how much I loved looking out from the stage into the lights, just barely being able recognize faces.  That moment of anticipation right before that first note is blown.  I recognized a new person in my life whom is steadily becoming an important character in Lisanti Land.  I was glad she came and could share that moment with me (look for more on this mystery woman soon, Im not quite ready to expose her to you folks yet).


The first two songs kept things mellow for me, a few easy riffs, some long tones and melodic lines.  The next few began giving me some room to blow.  By the end it was guns a blazing I had fully remembered why I got into music in the first place.  The crowd was on their feet.  I did my usual non-committal eye contact, half bow, turn of the shoulder thing that I always used to do on stage. Got my horns and stepped off.


The whole ordeal was eight years in the making and it went down in a mater of 35 minutes. In that short time I was reinvigorated.  Any doubts I had about my life after all the bullshit I had to cut through the last few months were gone.  I remembered exactly who I was and why I exist.  I define who Chris Lisanti is and no one else.


As I got off stage everyone was hugging each other and celebrating.  Turns out while we were performing my theatre company reached our goal of $20,000, the reason the event was happening in the first place.  The gnarly thing was we had only raised a little over $13,000 before going on and there was only about 16 hours left.  If we did not make the full quota we would have gotten nothing at all.  Big things are about to happen and just when I thought the golden age of Lisanti Land had passed we go and enter an even stronger age.  Cheers everyone.

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I am dropping a special edition of Groovin’ High tonight to say a sad good bye to yet another entertainer tragically lost before her time.  Just in case you have not heard Amy Winehouse was found dead today at age 27 in her London apartment, most likely as a result of a drug overdose.  Whether a fan of hers or not one has to be a little alarmed when a person of talent, beauty and accomplishment still cannot keep their shit together.  I for one am saddened by the whole ordeal.

Sindia turned me on to Amy Winehouse a few years back on a trip to Australia and since I have rather enjoyed her music. Sure she was a mess, but who isn’t?  When Adrienne left me her tune “My Tears Dry On Their Own” spoke to me.  Addicted is sort of a funny song about how her girl friend’s boy friend keeps coming over her house and smoking all of her weed.  I looked through a ton of different versions, even found one where she was so messed up she could barely stand.  I hate remembering people like that.  In this live version she lays down a confident performance that I think she was happy with.  Amy may you be in a happier place now.

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This weeks UCB makes a victor of my boy Scotty B.  You have to watch out for those sleeping giants and back in the Myspace days Bees ran the show in the UCB franchise.  It seems we have a new challenger to the Kooky Kyle dynasty.  I thought for sure it was going to be a two way race between Kook and Kooky, but now a new contender has stepped up.  I must say I am rather amused by the whole UCB process, too much probably.

A New Proclamation

 Before I get into Scott’s topic I quickly wanted to make another UCB announcement.  This one is sort of a counter action to last weeks rule of 5: One can only make 5 UCB suggestions in a 7 day period (See the first two paragraphs of Pitching a Tent blog for a better explanation of the new rule).  Last week I wrote a really fun bonus UCB entitled You’re a Fucking Idiot, But So Am I in which I took ten one word topics from Nick the Kook and wrote ten short responses to them.

I did this sarcastically because I was angry about all the serial suggesting going on. It turns I wrote one of the better blogs and definitely one of the more amusing in a while.  As I result I am making a new blog rule: Once a month I will write a special double points UCB where I will take ten one word suggestions made by one reader and write ten short answers.  Everyone can submit one set of top ten topics a month and I will write about my favorite ten.  Read the above linked blog to fully understand.  I think it will be a ton of fun for all of us.

Now let us get back to Scott’s blog.  He proposed I write about my thoughts on surf forecasting.  I am almost sure I have touched on this subject more then once here, but redundancy is what makes America awesome!

The Double Edged Sword

 I love the advances in modern day surf forecasting.  As a premium member of surfline.com I can get a very accurate three day, an accurate five day, reliable seven day and a 14 day speculation.  For a surf addict like myself, I must admit I have become quite the frother again; it makes attempting to live in the non-surfing world a tad bit easier.  That being said my life is still planned out by the five day forecast and I still find that I’m reluctant to make any long range plans for fear of missing it, although I have gotten a lot better as far as blowing things and people off to surf.  But this is not about my onerous surf habit.

Thanks to the accuracy of forecasting today you can plan trips on the fly and know you are most likely not to be skunked.  I remember a few years back Sean McGrath and I pulled the trigger on a trip down to Puerto Rico after getting a favorable long range forecast and we scored some of the best Wilderness and Table Tops I have ever seen down there.  We did not quite get it as good as we were hoping, but it was a ton better then the times I just blindly went.

Of course there is the inaccuracy as well.  There are so many factors that effect quality to surf that I am amazed at how often they get it right.  I mean wind, tide, global currents, water temperature, air temperature, frontal systems, El Nino, La Nina, all these factors mess with a swell realizing its full potential at a certain location and on the other hand allow for other less likely swell events to pleasantly surprise.  That is what has always made surfing the true oxymoron both frustrating as hell and extraordinary.

Sure when Surfline.com is claiming for Tuesday to be the day of days and I clear my entire calendar out on that day and its two foot and onshore, I am more then disappointed.  Usually I am on the dunes at Ventura harbor kicking sand or at Rincon throwing rocks spouting more then a few displeasing to the ear four letter words.

Then there are those times when the opposite happens and I had expected very little, show up and score it.  Two weeks ago actually there was some local NW wind swell and west groundswell combo.  Surfline.com was calling flat for Rincon all weekend, as would be expected for the time of year.  As it turned out the place broke in the very legit chest to head range for three days (see the surflog for more details on that).  There was nobody there but the hardcore crew of people who check the place everyday no matter what.  This leads to the next and final topic.

The Fucking Hype!!!

 Remember a paragraph ago or so when I was talking about that epic Tuesday that I cleared my calendar out for.  Guess what?  I’m not the only person to have that idea.  The Internet is a highly traveled place and there are hundreds if not thousands of sites dedicated to letting everyone know when the surf is firing and where it will be on.  That being the case on that faithful Tuesday when I show up at the crack of dawn (ok, more like after 8ish.  I live in Santa Barbara and have to drive 45 minutes to surf on most occasions) I am not by myself, not even a little.

There will be a guaranteed grip of people looking to get their surf on.  It will be a grand melting pot of the surfing spectrum, the hard core, the pros, the kooks, the valley guys, the weekend warriors taking a day off for a change, photogs and everything in between.  We will all be out there enjoying the same blown out two foot surf.  Then on Wednesday when it was suppose to be down, the surf is sure to be six foot, offshore and barreling.  God bless the great advances in modern surf forecasting.

Forecast or not, the potential to score is out there. The question is what length are you willing to go to find it?

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It seems everyone I know has blog these days or is in the process of setting one up.  I’m starting to not feel so special anymore.  Well I guess I well always be special in the retarded kid sort of way.  In the words of Bogie “We will always have the short bus”.  Alright that made absolutely no senses what so ever.  How many glasses of Australian Shiraz have a drank tonight?  Too many probably and I have not even gotten out the port yet.

Actually I would much rather have a nice glass of sherry but alas my frugal budget at the moment has forced for a serious cut back in my wine spending, thus no drinking sherry.  Its hard being a sophisticated alcoholic when your broke.  That reminds me look for a new segment coming soon called bottles I have killed this week and why.   Wow I’m a complete scatter brain this evening.  Back to the task at hand.

What was I talking about again?  Oh yeah that’s right, my friend and creative writer Julie Bifano’s new blog.  Jules is a great friend of mine and quite the woman for that matter.  I met her at this run down shit hole of a club called Q’s like five years ago.  The place was three floors of gnarl, two bars and a third floor pool lounge.  Wednesday thru Monday you would be hard pressed to find anyone besides Mexicans in there, but every Tuesday night  they hosted an 80’s dance party that would pack the place.

For whatever reason my old lurk partner in crime Brennan and I killed it every Tuesday night there.  I mean we were fucking pussy magnets.  It was not out of the question to meet multiple groups of woman through out the course of the night and they would come up to us!  It was astounding.  It was on one of these said nights that Julie and a friend of hers came up to us sitting  at a small raised cocktail table and said some bullshit line that made very little sense.

Julie invited us to go to this poetry night she was hosting over at this dive bar called Elsie’s.  We ended up showing up for a very entertaining literary evening.  Jules and I have been friends ever since.  Besides that she is a rather accomplished writer with a very modern spin on things.  She is someone who’s delineation of our society is sad, but true.  Unlike my blog where the content is solely the seemingly fictional yet true life adventures from Lisanti Land, her blog Juliebifano.com is a collection of  her personal original works of fiction in the form of short stories, poems, microfiction and other fun stuff.

I definitely get a kick out of reading her latest compendium.  Next time I string you out for days on end without any new content (even though the surflog gets updated everday, not that anyone bothers to read that.) because I am busy surfing or attempting to break the world record for the most times the act of masturbation can be performed in an 8 hour period, I strongly implore you visit Juliebifano.com and give it a read.  Who knows it may make you realize how imbecilic the shit you read here everyday is and ween you off this garbage.   When it comes down to it surfingruinedmylife.net is like a tall boy of PBR, while Juliebifano.com is more like a 1982 Rothschild finely aged to perfection.  Give it a read and help your brain for a change.

Ahh, PBR...The great American Beer.

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A few weeks ago I wrote a blog Im Calling Out to You.  The basic gist of that blog was to solicit funds for this theatre company here in Santa Barbara that I am currently working with called Proximity.  I am not going to reiterate what was mentioned the latter blog, you can click on the link above if your interested.  Instead I thought I would make one more plea to all of you for help.

Proximity is this nonprofit theatre group whose sole purpose is to perform high quality original shows that not only entertain but leave the audience with a thought provoking message, a message that may just help change perspectives and break down barriers.  More importantly we are a group committed to the avocation of the performing arts at no personal gain to ourselves besides the satisfaction of a job well done.  Everyone in the group is a super talented individual bringing his/her personal strengths and creative diversity to form an impervious unit.  Believe me all you need to do is see us in action and it will all become clear.  A picture is worth a thousand words after all.

If we are not in it for the money then why do we need it?  Unfortunately even if our time is free of cost other extenuating circumstances need paying for: rehearsal space, performance space, costumes, sets, and travel.   This summer we are putting on an original show called Shandy Wilkes written by talented NYC based play write Karina Richardson.  We will be taking the stage here in Santa Barbara at The Center Stage Theater From August 10-12th.  Immediately following the Santa Barbara shows Proximity shall be whisked away to New York City to perform Shandy Wilkes at the Robert Moss Theatre in the East Village from August 18-20th.

Why am I wasting your time?  Some of you have contributed already.  Let me be the first to thank my old friend, Sayreville bowl partner in crime and house party enthusiast Nick Kiefer for contributing to the cause.  He actually threw down the first day I wrote about my cause.  I also would like to thank my father Joseph Lisanti whom also made a very generous donation.  There all sorts of little incentives as well for different scales of donations, not that you need such motivation, but its always nice to get something in return for your kindness.

Proximity is a legit nonprofit organization meaning your donations are tax deductible.  If your looking to clear some heavy earnings with the IRS this year  for $10,000 we will credit you with director of the play.  Think how that would impress a date.  You take to the show, she opens the program and reads that you are the director.  She does not have to know you did nothing more then give $10,000.  You can just look into her eyes with an air of satisfaction and watch her melt right there in front of you. Trust me you will definitely get some that night.  For $1,500 you can name a character in the play.  Think of all the fun you can have with that, while helping out a great collection of artists.

Seriously there are over 3000 readers on this blog now and believe me I love each and every one of you, even the those I don’t know.  SurfingRuinedMyLife.net is my heart and soul.  It is me personified. My life out on the internet exposed to the public for all to read and be entertained, be it good or bad.  I don’t censor too much. When I’m hurting I write, when I’m happy I write, when I have crazy bizarre ideas I write.  If you have noticed the content here has gotten a thousand times better then it used to be.  That is because it takes me longer to compose a good coherent blog.

Here is what I am asking from everyone as a thanks Chris for giving me something fun to read all these years.  So far we at Proximity have raised just over $9000, but we still need another $11000.  I know we are all broke, but if everyone here just gave $1 dollar then that would $3000!!! If a few gave $5 or $10 then who knows what would happen.  I am going to up the ante even more for you folks.  Kick starter gives me a list of backers whom have donated.  It does not tell me how much you put into the pot, but if you end up on that list I will write a special blog just for you about anything you want.  Anything.  It could be a special recipe, a blast from the past, a drunken tale, a blog all about you, a fictional story about a hover cat.  You name it I scribe it.  I hope I have to write 3000 of these things.

Once again thank you Dad, Nick Kiefer, and even Nick the Kook for mentioning us on his blog staywet.net.  If you feel so compelled to help out click here to donate: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/kenurbina/proximitys-shandy-wilkes-in-sb-and-ny.  If you need help just let me know and I can walk you through it.  Oh and Kiefer don’t worry you will get your blog too, just let me know what you want it to be about.  I hope if you are in the New York or Santa Barbara area for any of the show dates you will come out to see the show!

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First off I want to let all the haters know up front I am not going ignore the Eric Clapton version, the original.  It will be posted at the end of the this blog.  Clapton is the man at the guitar.  I am a hip/hop guy and this version just really moves me, both physically and emotionally.  I mean seriously I can bust a foul move to this groove, plus M.J. gets down on the track and she is a full on diva.

More then anything I wanted to jot down a little bit about what this song means to me and the whole idea of actually changing the world.  I used to believe that it was impossible for one person to change the world and as a result always just passed the buck on to the next person. “I am just one man and the world is fucked anyway so who gives a shit”.  This was my mantra for the longest time.  I feel a bit different now.

I believe that we can all change the world individually, one person at a time, by showing our fellow man the same courtesy we ourselves would like to be shown.  “Do onto others as you would yourself”.  I spent way too many years being angry and miserable.  Now I try and smile as much as possible, don’t get me wrong its really hard to do, but “a smile can defeat a frown”.  I really do believe that.

Staying positive is important as well.  I just about spent the last thirty years thinking in the negative and you know what, when you give off those vibes you get them right back.  I have lived a blessed and beautiful life from day one.  Instead of dwelling on that and what I had, I spent the majority of my time always wanting more.   At the end of the day all it did was frustrate the hell out of me and make everyone around me miserable.

These days I make the most out of everything.  I try and appreciate the small things, like a remarkable sunset or the spectacular full moon we have gotten to enjoy the last few nights.  I give everyone around me the benefit of the doubt even if it comes around to bite me in the ass.  I try and listen to what others have to say and actually consider their point of view instead of my usual dismissal and insulting retorts.

All this sounds rather obvious, but think how rarely we consider these things in our busy, consumer-centric, generic society.  We are taught from day one that it is a kill or be killed world out there instead of live and let live.  All I am saying is that each and every one of us counts towards the greater good of our world.  Even if it is as small as holding the door for someone who has his hands full of packages or giving up your seat on the bus for an old lady.  Its those small kindnesses that become infectious and maybe those people whom you bestowed your kindness on will show it to the next person.

I am not saying I’m perfect.  I still regress every so often and do a thing or two I am not proud of.  It is our mistakes that make us human.  Perfection is boring.  As long as we learn from our misgivings then I feel it was not in vain.  I briefly wrote it in yesterday’s blog Your A Fucking Idiot, but So Am I that we if expect nothing but the very best in us then we can not go wrong.  I think that when we do that other people around us can feel that motivation and will strive for their personal best as well.  I know it works that way for me.

All I am trying to say is that I think I have been changing the world just a little bit one person at a time for a while now and have just never realized it.  It may have been adverse or positive. These days I am only shooting for the latter.  If we all put our efforts in a positive matter then just maybe we can turn shit around before we really are fucked.  That is just my two cents and probably just about all its worth as well.  I hope you enjoyed the song even if I just put you through 800 words of complete gibberish.  Below is the Eric Clapton version.

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Alright, so I’m dropping a special UCB tonight.  I am also adding an amendment to the UCB rule book as a result of certain recent participants getting a bit out of hand with their suggestions.  I love all the enthusiasm but this is a little bit ridiculous.  Listen up everyone for now on you can only submit 5 UCB Topics in a seven-day period.  It will be seven days from your 5th posting.  For example if you post your 5th suggestion for the period on a Tuesday then you have to wait for that next Tuesday before you can throw down another suggestion.


If you break this rule then if I decide to use your UCB topic the points will go to whoever the previous week’s winner was.  So be weary of this and make those topics count cause I am tired of getting Christmas style lists of barely qualified topics.  You also run the risk of me showing up at your house with a sock full of pennies and beating the piss out of you.  With that out of the way Nick the Kook takes the win on a special edition of the UCB and earns 1 point. This is what happens when you throw down too many topics.


Here is the shopping list Kook presented me with:

1. hipsters
2. end of the world
3. sharting
4. clogging the toilet
5. pearl necklace
6. surfing really fucking cold water/conditions
7. 5 reasons why Florida sucks
8. worst song youve ever heard
9. the cost of printer ink
10. dumbest ucb that has won

I am going to answer each one of these topics in as concise an answer as possible thus taking them all off the market forever.


  1. Hipsters: I don’t really understand the current hipster trend and truth be told I also don’t give a shit about it either.  So they where stupid cloths that are two sizes too small, talk like morons, have bad facial hair and dumb hair cuts.  They also seldom get laid meaning more for me!  P.S.  when I wear jeans that tight every lady and queer in the room is staring at my junk, but those hipster guys must have some of the worlds smallest cocks cause they never have any bulge showing, not that I am a bird watcher, just stating a fact.


  1. End of The World:  Some people think the world is going to end in December of next year. I guess only time will tell.  I remember when the world was supposed to end ten years ago back in 1999 with all that y2k bull shit.  Guess what folks, we are still here.  All I can say on this one is that if you live everyday like its your last, take nothing for granted, cherish ever single moment and be the best you can possibly be then I would not worry about it.  Everyone is going to die.  The question is did they really live?


  1. Sharting:  Sharting is just plain fucking disgusting.  Everyone has done it at least once in his or her life.  It sucks and can be embarrassing at an inopportune moment, although I suppose there really is no good moment to have a shart happen. For those of you who are more dignified then my Jersey brethren a shart is when you fart and accidentally shit your pants instead.  It’s not a pretty sight.  I once knew this kid I surfed with called Shart because apparently he shit his pants at a party and threw his underwear in the bathroom garbage pail opting to go commando. Next day the kid’s mom of the house Shart was partying at found the nasty ass pair of draws.  He as been Shart ever since.


  1. Clogging The Toilet:  These just keep getting better.  I’m very glad for the invention of the toilet.  Before that people took piss and shits in either little bowls and dumped it outside or used a giant human litter box that was kept under the staircase on the first floor of the house.  One complaint I do have is that modern day toilets, especially those good for nothing low flow ones clog easy as hell.  I’m sorry but I only shit about once a day so when it goes down I fill the fucking bowl.  This usually leads to clogging.  Now in my house there is always a plunger right next to the toilet so if you get into said scenario you can get yourself out.  I have been in the homes of others where there was none to be found. Then I find myself pouring water from a cup into the tank to try and add more water pressure.  It becomes a nightmare.  Moral of the story: Keep a plunger in your bathroom or risk being left with a nasty floater. 

5. Pearl Necklace: Wow these are just literally going down the crapper, well not in the case of the last two or even this one for that matter.  I could be an old fart or a square and write about how I think pearls are very sexy when worn by a woman to accompany a formal gown. Alas I know that is not the pearl necklace Kook is talking about. Here is the Urban Dictionary definition of Pearl Necklace: the glorious culmination of tit-fucking, in which you blow your nuts out all over a girl’s tits, shoulders, neck, and, with any luck, chin. one of the highest expressions of love and affection bestowable upon a  woman by a man. I do not agree with this at all.  As a matter of fact I keep my semen to myself and have never blown a load on a chick in my entire life even if I was asked to.  I have too much respect for women in general to do such a feat even if she does not have enough self-respect to know any better.

  1. Surfing Really Cold Water/Conditions:  I grew up in such conditions and have scored some of the best sessions of my life on days most would not even think about coming out from under the covers.  That being said I moved out of that garbage almost five years ago and have not looked back since.  Give me the shitty cold, crowded blown out conditions of Central California any day.

 7. Worst Song I Have Ever Heard:  I don’t know, I have heard a ton of bad songs.  I would have to say just about anything country is the worst song I have ever heard.


  1. Five Reasons Florida Sucks:
  1. Rednecks
  2. Old People
  3. Mushy Waves
  4. Portuguese Men of War
  5. Midwestern tourists

 9.The Cost of Printer Ink:  Why is printer ink so expensive?  I mean its ink right.  I think it is because you have to buy those stupid cartridges.  Why cant we just open up a slot and pour in ink like typewriters used to be?  It is all a set up to jack us for more hard earned money.


10. Dumbest UCB That Has Ever Won:  I think we have a winner right here.  Congratulations Kook.  That was fucking exhausting.

These guys are sooo cool.


Four birds with one stone. Here we have a Florida redneck clogging a toilet after sharting his pants while giving his girlfriend a pearl necklace.

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