Archive for the ‘Blast from the Past: 2009’ Category

Even in over crowded California there are empty line ups for the intrepid.

Even in over crowded California there are empty line ups for the intrepid.

This blog was originally published on November 22 2009 on myspace.com.  About a week ago or so Kooky Kyle dug it up from my archives and recommended I reblog it here on SurfingRuinedMyLife.net.  Its funny cause its only four years ago and my life has changed in so many ways, yet in other ways certain things never change.  At the time my professional surfing career (or lack there of) was teetering on the cusp of extinction being paid  more  for my life style then surfing ability.  To supplement my meager income I worked a dead end job as the night attendant at a gas station in Goleta where I pretty much got paid to sit around read books, write my blog, listen to the same 50 tired hip hop songs all day on 103.3 The Vibe and be rude to customers.  Ever see clerks?  I was that guy.

Adrienne and I were just in the honeymoon stages of our to become tragic romance.  Two years down the drain.  “Better to have loved and lost then to not have loved at all”?  You can read Bowing Out if you want to rehash my misery cause that’s the only place your going to get lamentations about her.  I’m over it and can honestly say I have completely moved on with my life.  I think a year of mental and emotional torture on the subject was enough thank you.
Garden of Eden Parody

The 2009-2010 Season was an El Nino year and some of the best surf I have ever had the privilege to surf in the 805.  It might have been the best season of surfing for me personally in my entire life.  I was in the prime of my game, had curbed my drinking  and thanks to my easy schedule was always on it.  I met this dude Mark who stowed away with three of my boys from New Jersey on a trip from San Francisco to San Diego.  My old friend Alex was in medical school up in SF and was moving to SD for his residency.  Two of my other boys Sweet Charles and Dave, the Spring Lake crew, met up with him for an adventure down the coast.  

Mark another Spring Lake kid had just recently moved to Santa Cruz to loosely attend college but mostly surf and thus ultimately stopped going to class altogether.  The boys met up with him in SC then worked their way down to Santa Barbara where all of us scored some great sessions.  I should dig up that blog too for a blast from the past at some point.  The boys hung around for a few days till the swell backed off.  Mark offered his couch to me anytime I wanted to come up and surf Santa Cruz.  

After a lack luster week of surf and bad winds I browsed the forecast for Santa Cruz and sure enough it looked like a decent run of surf.  I called my boy Malone another Jersey guy who came out for the season and was living with Cory at the Palace.  He had wanted to come on one of  my crazy surfing jaunts for a while.  Just like that the stage was set for another imbecilic Chris Lisanti endeavor.  I apologize ahead of time for all the crazy different text size and fonts.  It pasted over from myspace all fucked up and I was too lazy to deal with the coding issues.  Any notes in “red” were added as hindsight notes.
North County Santa Cruz

November 22 2009

I woke up Bundled in all the clothes I was wearing the night before under a comforter and two blankets and was absolutely freezing starring face to face with Mark’s roommate’s tiny little cat Boodle sort of thinking maybe I should have stayed in the Barb.  Mark was already up boiling some water for tea and coffee psyched to be going on a mission up north since town was still pretty small and bogged with the tide.  I had driven the PCH up that stretch between Santa Cruz and Pacifica before and knew the raw potential of that coastline, just bursting with reefs, points and beachies, not to mention plenty of sharks.

Mark and Boodle

Mark and Boodle

 We got Malone up, warmed our insides with some tea and hit the road.  As expected the Lane was super high and completely un-ride-able.  We gave a check from the road on 4-mile (another tiny reefy point outside of town).  It was better there but had a few guys on it and was nothing special.  With 50 miles plus coastline to explore it seemed a waste to go for a paddle there.  Once out of town we checked a spot just North of Davenport, which was decent but had a few long boarders on it and was a bit fat looking. On a later trip Mauriello, Mark and I would score that place pretty fun.

Past there we drove for another ten miles or so before coming to a dip in the cliffs exposing a beach break and outer reef break with a handful of guys on it. There was plenty more size there, overhead at least. We drove on another mile or so and pulled off at this look out point on top of bluffs a solid 150 feet high. Below we spied out a series of reef breaks each having something to offer. The closest one to the previous break we passed had like three or four guys on it and was a somewhat fun looking right reef that we determined was well overhead after a watching someone get a wave.

What really interested us was this other reef about 100 yards north from the one being surfed.  From the looks of the set up it was a perfect A-frame reef with a short slabby left that appeared from our vantage point to end in a bit of dry reef.  The right meanwhile set up a heaving thirty yard barrel section before opening up to allow some turns.  This wave looked unreal, but the real tricky problem was figuring out how to get to the thing.  After about the first forty yards or so there was nothing but sheer cliff easily 100 feet down.  We gave it about ten minutes of deliberation on ways to get to the slab before deciding it too much work. Time was wasting and Malone was getting antsy. Every time I am up there I check this wave and have never seen it as good as that day.  I still have yet to surf it.

So perfect and yet so hard to reach.

So perfect and yet so hard to reach.

The vote was to move on.  Mark claimed he knew of a pretty decent beach break a bit further north near a lumber mill that he scoped out a few weeks back on a school excursion.   It was worth a shot.  Sure enough we pulled up to this beach break that looked about head high (in reality it was solid overhead) from the cliffs and there were peaks up and down this 500 yard stretch of beach.  It was rather breath taking.  All around us were these pine tree covered hills, on top of one was this lumber mill permeating the air with that saw dusty/pine smell. The beach was surrounded by cliffs except for a small section where there was a small river mouth that forced a break in the cliffs allowing easy access.

One of the reefs near the lumber mill.

One of the reefs near the lumber mill.

 I could tell right away that this was a beach/reef break mix by the way the waves were breaking.  On the southern most corner of the beach there was this right hander that was from the cliff anyway peeling off for a solid 50 yards or so bowling around itself the whole way down the line.  It kind of looked a bit soft, but certainly the best wave with accessibility we had seen.  At this point all three of us were bugging to get some surf and the decision was made to give the reef a go.

Some of the scenery at the spot.

Some of the scenery at the spot.

We suited up and walked down the refreshingly gradual trail to the break.  As we got closer the wave just kept looking more and more fun.  There was one guy on it and he was going left most of the time.  The left although much shorter was certainly punchy, worth a turn and a rampy close out section.  I paddled out and snagged a left off the bat, went for a hit under the lip and got destroyed and then proceeded to get caught inside for an eight wave set.  This is not very fun when the water is hovering in the low 50’s. 

 I got back out there and picked off a decent right, got tubed off the drop then hit it four times before the wave petered out in the channel.  After that I had a few more decent rides.  Both Mark and Malone were getting their share as well, Malone opting for the outside bombs, while Mark hung on the inside for the racy double ups.  The reef was pretty sick.  The wave would come in and go square off the drop, then it would bowl around itself for like another 30 yards or so giving a decent section to get at least two turns in.  The bigger ones were a bit mushy off the drop but then rolled into the slab and threw out super wide.

The beach break/river mouth combo

The beach break/river mouth combo

 After about thirty minutes of having the place to ourselves five other surfers paddled out, it was no big deal , there were still plenty of waves.  I was sitting pretty deep on the reef when this sizable set, probably the biggest yet popped up in front of me.  I took off on the second one a little deep.  I got to my feet, dropped in and next thing I know Im flying through the air upside down waiting to get destroyed by the lip.  The fucking thing hit me hard and sent me real deep.  I cant remember the last time I got hit by a wave that hard and held down that long.  Turns out according to Mark who had front row seats to the whole endeavor I dropped into a lip on top of a slabby double up causing me to eat shit. Come to think of it I got worked pretty hard the entire session only ridding a 5’10 when I should have had something more substantial. This has become one of my favorite spots in Northern California and I make it a point to surf there if its fun whenever I am in the area. 

We ended up surfing the place for a solid three and a half hours till it started to turn off a little with the lower tide, although it was still pretty decent.  From there we headed further north down the windy PCH as it followed the cagily coastline.  We passed numerous setups and spots that had potential.  There were just waves everywhere.  We pulled over and checked this beach break called Gazo Creek that just looked like there were perfect right peelers breaking off this river mouth reef thing.  Still cold and tired from our last session we decided to keep on the search.

What we were greeted with in the lot at Gazo.  As we would later find out that wave was more then double overhead and heavy.

What we were greeted with in the lot at Gazo. As we would later find out that wave was more then double overhead and heavy.

The boys and I ended up going all the way up to Pacifica and at that point I found it prudent to take Malone and Mark to Mavericks, which would not be breaking but at the very least they could get a look at the famous set up.  We got to the parking lot and some dude was suiting up to charge it.  Sure enough when we got in front of the cliff it was tiny (by Mav’s standards) maybe only 15 foot or so and just barely clearing the rocks, but strong enough that one could really get an understanding of how serious of a wave it is.

Mark Foo was a world class big wave rider who lost his life at Mavericks back in the early 90's.  This rock stands at the foot of the break in his memory.

Mark Foo was a world class big wave rider who lost his life at Mavericks back in the early 90’s. This rock stands at the foot of the break in his memory.

With waning light we decided our best bet was to truck it back to Gazo Creek and try our luck at the beach break.  We got there a little after four and by now some thick ominous gray clouds had moved in obscuring the sun set session we were hoping to relish.  The surf still looked really sick though and I had a feeling it was way bigger then the 4-6 feet we thought.  Malone opted out claiming it looked like a lot of work to put on a cold wet 4/3 to only get a few waves before dark and added he did not want to feel like fish food either.

Pacifica Peir

Pacifica Pier

 Mark and I were still up for the challenge and suited up.  Keep in mind this is a big open beach in the middle of nowhere in the wake of this old lighthouse not too far up the coast from it.  With every passing minute it was getting darker.  I handed Malone the camera so he could document our potential attack and subsequent death and we gave it a paddle.  As soon as Mark and I got down to beach level we knew we may have bit off more then we could chew (no pun intended).

Still looking somewhat inviting although a bit on the creepy side.

Still looking somewhat inviting although a bit on the creepy side.

 The shore break was solid head high and the white water on the inside was overhead.  There was a lot of water moving around and the sets were with out a doubt double overhead if not bigger.  We jumped in and immediately were fighting a current and thrashing our way out through the immense white water.  At first I was not sure if we were going to even make it to the lineup.  Finally after a few minutes of cold heavy ducking diving and paddling in place a channel opened up. Before we knew it we were out there.

Just to the north of Gazo is  Pigeon Pt and its subsequent self named light.  Pigeon Pt is also one of the biggest seal rookeries in California.

Just to the north of Gazo is Pigeon Pt and its subsequent self named light. Pigeon Pt is also one of the biggest seal rookeries in California.

 Im not going to lie at that point the surreal setting of the place began to get to me and I realized how small and insignificant I was in the food chain.  I had no way to judge the lineup not knowing if I was too far out or in.  I panicked and brought down Mark with me.  We decided to get one and go in quitting while we were ahead.  This break was in the middle of nowhere, it was sketchy as hell, we were in the heart of shark country during feeding time and the nearest hospital was easily a 45-minute drive away.  All of this was in my opinion a really bad combination for disaster.  Yeah these were all entities I should have considered before the actual paddle out, but when have I ever been one to sufficiently think anything I do through.  

There was not too much time to think about it thanks to a set that sneaked up on us out the back. To our dismay we took it on the head as a result of being out of position too far inside.  After the set passed I snagged an overhead in between wave that I got a hit and a floater out of.  Mark was right behind me on a smaller one that peeled all the way to beach giving him three solid turns.  We debating going back for more but ultimately chose to call it a day so we could live to surf tomorrow.  Both of us thought about those waves all night and the next day.  It did not help that as we walked up the beach we watched set after set of perfect double overhead rights peel down the beach.  On a pair of 5’9’s there was no way we could tackle it.  This spot would have to be conquered some other time.  We never conquered and I still have yet to surf there again.  As a matter of fact we were in a surf shop in town later in the trip and when we told the surf shop employee where we surfed he freaked “You have to be a nut to surf there.  There are more sharks then fish in the ocean at that spot.  You two were lucky to get out with your lives.”

The small non-set wave I caught to make my escape.

The small non-set wave I caught to make my escape.

That night Mark took us to this killer Mexican restaurant after which we went back to his place.  There we warmed ourselves with a cup of tea huddled around a lit stove burner. Over tea we excitingly conversed on  the day’s events and what the swell would bring in the morning. With that kind of sensory overload the three of us passed out in complete and utter exhaustion.  I cant remember the last time I slept on the floor so well.

There are nothing like little adventures like this that are relatively unplanned and enjoyed by the seat of one’s pants.  These days I am so locked in it seems I have less and less opportunity for adventure.  Every time I am in Santa Cruz I stop and eat a meal that Mexican joint.  I hope you enjoyed this reading this re-post as much as I had reliving it in my head when I edited it.

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This edition of Blast from the Past I would like to share a UCB I wrote back in October of 2009.  Even though it is a UCB no points will be awarded to this quarter to Scott for it. He already got his points back in 2009. Its a pretty funny blog I wrote about how I get off on saving money grocery shopping.  I always laugh ever time I peruse it.  I hope you enjoy it as well.  I know tonight I was in serious need of a good laugh.  

This weeks UCB makes a victor again of Scotty B. who apparently is fixing to oust Kooky Kyle as our current standing champ.  Scott did not win the quarter, Kooky took it.  Scott proposed I write about my “best super market score ever”.  For many of you out there that may not know me that well or have just known the Calified version of me, you may not understand what he is talking about.  I will use this blog to shed some light on the subject while highlighting my best super market scores.

Basically I’m what I like to call a genius of thrift or frugality, especially when it comes to eating.  Ok, you got me I am just cheap.  I used to save my money for surf equipment and travel.  These days the money I save means more drinks I can buy at the Wild Cat.  Aint alcoholism grand?

Super Markets in general are virtual treasure troves of bargains allowing one to eat like king yet live on a pauper’s budget.   I my friends love to live like a King and eat undoubtedly as much as King Henry the 8th yet some how always have some coin left over in my nuts and bolts budget (shit these days its more like a budget of bent rusty nails that only the likes of Salad Fingers can appreciate). Now many a stuck up person can and will shake a stick at some of the practices you are about to read, but trust me my friends if you look past the cautionary red tape that has been beaten into your brains about what should and should not be consumed then I assure you that there are ridiculous savings to be had.  I have not died or gotten adversely sick from anything I have eaten on the cheap.

Before I go any further with this I must go through my most recent shopping experience here in Santa Barbara.  Now California is not like Jersey and therefore you have to work a lot harder to find the savings.  Truth be told it has taken me nearly three years of coming out here to get it wired to which I still feel that I can do better.  I went to what I have found to have the best deals of the grocery stores out here, Albertsons (I am no way endorsed by this company or influenced any other way then the savings I get from my weekly shopping).  I have been shopping there four years now and know a good number of the full time employees on a first name basis.   In California its all about the club cards the stores have in order to take advantage of the biggest deals.  I think I have a card from ever store imaginable.

The big trick they try to pull in SB is the 10 for $10 dollar deals.  In some cases yeah if you need ten of something its not a bad deal but in most cases when you do the math you find out you really did not save enough money to be worth storing ten of anything and they never have 10 for 10 on family packs of condoms which really are the only things I really needed in that kind of bulk.  As 2pace would say “I get around”.

Anyhow, long story short I ended up buying $40 worth of groceries (my shopping for a week and a half or so) for $26.50 and that my friends was a high bill for me.  I had to buy a few things that last multiple weeks such as shampoo and sugar to name a few.  Albertson’s also every Monday night has this “Chicken Dinner Meal Deal” as they call it, where you get your choice of eight pieces of fried Chicken or a whole rotisserie chicken, two side dishes, a pound of potatoes wedges and a two liter bottle of Coke for $6.99.  I can eat off that for three to four days if I get it alone or my roommate and I split it spending $3.50 a piece each for dinner and then some, oh and I almost forgot it also comes with a package of four Hawaiian sweet rolls.   Back in the days of the frat we would get like three orders of it.  I think they raised the price to 8.99 now.  Still a great deal.  I have not taken advantage in sometime.  

How are these incredible savings possible?  Well here are some simple steps to help you on your quest to become a super market super shopper saver like myself  (say that ten times fast).  First make sure you sign up for whatever that super market’s club card is.  I know this sounds gay and you feel retarded having the little key chain cards dangling from your keys or those extra cards in your wallet.  I don’t carry a wallet anymore.  I am all about rolling my cash or lack there of small bills out around my ID and debit card.  You know what is not gay; saving nearly $200 a month in food shopping.  Getting these cards are free and relatively no hassle, usually all you have to do is hit up the courtesy booth and fill out an information form that you can totally lie about everything on if your one of those identity theft freaks.  Take your card (I prefer the key things so that I can always have my card on me) and let the savings rain down upon you.

Don’t shake a stick at those generic/store brand items.  Sure their packaging is not as flashy and you may have never heard of the company.  That is just because all that money Coke spent on advertising, Sasha Cola put into making their product $1.99 for a 12 pack instead of 4.99 and that is just one example.  I have also found here in California that the Spanish/Mexican brands seem to always be a bit cheaper as well, not to mention that there are entire Spanish markets that seem to always be a bit cheaper albeit on the ghetto side of things and not so white friendly.

Another money saver and probably the biggest one for me is the expired and damaged food section.   Not every super market has these.  Some of the more uppity places for example feel it cheapens their store.  These sections are not always easy to spot either.  Rule of thumb for finding this score of nearly free food, look near the entrance to the wear house or employee only section of the store and you will usually notice a shelf full of battered cans and ripped packages being sold for half if not three quarters their shelve price.   They store this stuff near the bathrooms too.

Make sure you inspect thoroughly the Appy (Deli), Bakery, Meat, Dairy and produce departments.  These five departments are a super saver’s best friends.  All contain time sensitive products that are ticking time bombs about to go bad.  Many stores rather then  throwing away these products will substantially reduce their prices sometimes as low as wholesale cost rather then lose 100% of the take right before the actual expiration date.  The best time to take advantage of these types of deals is at night usually after 7 or 8pm (don’t go to late or you risk the discounted products getting thrown away, which actually will bring us to our final topic).  If you notice that a certain grocery store gets a heavy lunch rush you may want to check the prepared foods or Appy department after 2pm to see if any of the left overs not purchased during the lunch rush have been marked down.

Shop Rite in Wall back in NJ was classic for all of the above.  I don’t think I have bought any meat here in SB that was not marked down for quick sale.  Pathmark in Wall NJ boxes up all their doughnuts and muffins after 10pm and sells a packed over full dozen size box for $1.99.  I used to thrive on those doughnuts for days.  Forget about Shop Rite that place will go down in my mind as the best super market chain I have ever had the privilege to both work and shop in (I actually worked at two separate locations at two separate times, but that is a whole other blog).

Finally last and probably the most questionable of my methods over the years is the dumpster behind the store after it has closed.  Food store dumpsters, be it a super market or convenience stores or even restaurants for that matter are where you can score a meal absolutely free.  This practice, although the cheapest also takes the most skill and cunning.  First off any time you go dumpster diving you take on some inherent safety risks.  You may have to fight off some bums, large insects and rats or worse, here there are skunks to contend with and entry in and out of the dumpster can cause injury as well.  This Mexican guy I work with Misha recently cut his arm pretty bad dumpster diving for thrift store discards.  I actually had to fight off a bum about a year ago for a discarded uneaten half of a sandwich I saw some business guy toss on State St.  Luckily I although hungry was not starving like the bum, thus my strength won out.  

In the case of dumpster diving for food you really have to use your head about what is still edible and not.  My rule of thumb has always been if it is still in the original sealed package and no more then a week or so past the “sell by” date you are probably golden.  Items such as meat and diary I don’t mess with, dysentery is no fun and the medical bills will totally make your savings null.  Bakery is usually ok especially if you get the stuff that is being thrown away at the end of the day.

When I used to live in Boston I always would score free bread and bakery products from the dumpster from the grocery store across the street from my apartment.  I just always made sure to get there before the bums.  The Einstein bagels in Wall NJ used to throw all their old bagels into their dumpster at the end of their day allowing me to pick off free bagels as well.  To my credit I have yet to dumpster dive here in SB, but with the way things are going monetarily for me, I think my time may be coming.

How have I gotten so good at Super Market savings?  My crazy mother was the coupon clipper queen and would go to every super market in town in order to seek out the cheapest price even if it was to save pennies on the dollar.   Now Im not this bad.  My time is more valuable to me and I figure all the gas driving from store to store eliminates any savings you would have had anyway.  I hope this helps some of you out there especially in these trying times.  Currently I am in the process of maybe setting up a food stamp thing by claiming I am homeless. Time will tell on that one.  As my roommate says “they can’t prove your not homeless”.  Wise words from a very special guy.

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I wrote this blog back on March 2nd 2009.  At the time I was living in an unofficial fraternity that I had started to enable myself to live rent free.  My ex-wife whom I wrote about last night in Feeling Awkward and I had split up only  a few months prior and I was for all extensive purposes drinking myself to death. This was initially published as a segment I used to call “Week in Review”, which is the equivalent of “News from Lisanti Land” now.  Initially it was a two parter, but I do not have part 2 currently at my disposal so you will just have to wait for it or got searching for it yourself.  I will tell you what, if you do find part 2 and are the first person to post the link in the comments it is worth 3 extra UCB points!  As always anything in red is added hindsight for this blog.

Well this week was a pretty big blur of a 6 day party fiasco, a ridiculous amount of surfing, a ton of visitors from the east coast and way, way, way, too much gnarl.  So I know I said I was going to take it easy on the party scene, but this week was a special exception.  Monday was my boy Brennan’s Birthday, Tuesday was Mardi Gras, then Scott got into town Wednesday and we had to celebrate, Thursday two friends of Cory’s came into town from Pennsylvania, and then it was Friday and Saturday so of course I had to keep on cruising.  Plus Pixie Rixon came up from San Diego to party on Saturday.  Rather then going day by day I’m just going to grab the highlights from the week.

Monday, Feb 23rd, afternoon:  After surfing some of the worst Rincon ever I was pretty much over surfing for the day and headed over to J7’s work shop to fix some boards.  3 hours later Brennan calls me and says he would be super amped  if he could surf a session on his birthday.  I tried to dissuade the guy knowing it was going to be on shore, super low tide and tiny.  Never a man to truly stomp on stoke we ended up cruising to C-street.

We get there and its like knee to waist high and side shore, but no one was out and there were a few lips that looked worthy.  We get out there and I soon realized wearing a 3/2 was a bad choice, the water was freezing and you know that once I get cold I just sit there.  Then there were these two little grommies who were constantly paddling me up the point add up all the adversities and I was pretty much over it.  Brennan got on my case about the whole little kids surfing circles around me thing so I made an effort in the last 30 minutes to school the kids which I did thanks to a 3 foot backside air on a knee high wave.

I got out of the water and my stomach was all cramped up.  These are not your average cramps.  Nope, these are those dreaded explosive diarrhea cramps.  Now I was surfing at the top of C-street and it was low tide leaving me a good 100 yards of rocks to walk over and then another 300 yard dash to the bathroom.  I charged that shit. I don’t think I have ever hustled that fast for anything in my life.  I get in the bathroom, the dirtiest public bathroom probably in all of Ventura County and rip my suit off as fast as humanly possible.  Of course I wore  the new Body Glove Vapor front zip, a very warm and comfortable suit but a bit on the difficult side to take on and off.  Not the sponsor plug, yeah I did my job back when I was a professional surfer.

I managed to get my suit down to my knees just in the nick of time before pissing out my asshole for a solid 15 minutes.  I mean I have had some pretty gnarly diarrhea before but this was crazy.   Straight up nothing but liquid was squirting out my hole.  To make matters worse I was dripping wet and freezing contributing to making this one of the top 3 worst bathroom experiences of my life (shit maybe I will write a blog about that on one of the free days).  Back in the myspace.com days I used to poorly attempt to adhere to a daily blog schedule.  It failed miserably.  I mean look how well I keep up with the UCB and that was suppose to be every Thursday.

Barley surviving I cleaned myself up, pulled back on my cold wet wet suit only to do a sorry walk of shame all the way to bottom free lot just above the pier.  I felt so violated and disgusted by the whole experience.  I got back to the car to a very jubilant Brennan ready to jive the shit out of me.  If it were not his birthday he definitely would have made it onto one of my lists.

I got dressed thinking the whole ordeal was over only to find out 5 minutes later as we are pulling out of the parking lot that the same dreaded cramps hit me again.  I was like dude we have to stop or I’m going to blow the seat out of my pants.  Luckily we were right across from the Habit Burger on Ventura Ave.  I got in there just as this haggard ass homeless lady was walking out.  I open the door and the bathroom is a mess, shit all over the place.

Clenching my ass closed with all my strength I quickly brought the toilet up to a bare bones level of cleanliness for me to sit on the seat.  Once again I took another ass piss.  While I’m in complete digestive agony this Mexican guy keeps banging on the door.  Finally after the 5th  time I scream at the dude that I was in the middle of the worst diarrhea of my life and to get off my fucken case.  Dude backed off.  Finally I guess I must have shitted all that was left in my stomach cause I was good to go, but the whole night out I was in constant fear of the shits coming back with a vengeance.  Luckily for me the whole ordeal was left behind in Ventura.

On a side note this whore I was seeing at the time ended up going home with my boy Brennan. Her excuse “It was his birthday Chris, everyone should get laid on their birthday”.  Somehow that did not make me feel much better.  At least I sort of had a hand in getting my boy laid.

 Wednesday Feb 24th 9pm:  While pre-gaming to go to the bar Face manages to pound 8 beers in a matter of 45 minutes.  Drunk as shit Scott, my Swedish neighbors and I persuade him to table dive through the pyramid of empties he build on the coffee table.  He goes for it belly flopping flat on the table after which I proceeded to poor beer all over his head.  From there he put on his dirt bike helmet while Scott and I hit him over the head with these two broken surfboards that I was going to hang on the wall.  Needless to say he was even more fun at the bar where I’m pretty sure he managed to hit on and aggravate every girl there.   I think one girl even slapped him across the face.  It was classic.



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Before I get into writing this blog or reposting it rather let me just say that Kooky Kyle is a mother fucking internet animal and SurfingRuinedMyLife.net all star of all stars.  Last night I threw out a challenge to all my readers and UCB enthusiasts alike to go back into the Lisanti Blog Myspace archives and dig out the blog I wrote back in October of 2009 about the painful loss of my cats Alfie and Turtle of which only one returned (Alfie) and post it in the comments.  Well sure enough who got down and dirty and pulled it up; none other then the phantasmagorical mad man Kooky Kyle.  For his efforts he will be awarded two UCB points, not like he really needs them to stay on top anyway.

I for one am totally appreciative for his efforts.  Thanks buddy, your the man.  I promise if you actually make it out to Santa Barbara this year to take extra care that your Chris Lisanti Adventure Tour is all that and a bag of chips. So the following blog was posted on October 24 2009: (as usual notes I jot down in Red was added to give my thoughts on the issue at this most current posting)

About almost three weeks ago or so my cats escaped from my wholesome abode thanks impart to my roommate Brennan getting drunk and passing out with the door wide open on a Friday night. He calls me at like 4:30am frantic and still rather drunk, all upset that the cats were lost and I had to come home and find them. I replied “Dude its 4:30am your drunk, Im tired as hell, its pitch black outside, we don’t have a flashlight and they are black cats. Go to sleep its not going to happen tonight”. I was really banking on them coming back in the morning as they always have in the past when an escape takes place.

In Brennan’s defense my lazy ass never got around to fixing the front door, which due to some rotting wood was tricky to stay closed in the frame (remember that mental check list I referred to a few weeks ago in Groovin’ High? Well this was one of the things that was on it). Heck it is hard to close that door sober let alone shit faced. It took me about three weeks to realize this fact. Initially I wanted to kick the door to his room in and hack him to pieces with an ax Dostoyevsky style (at the time I was engrossed in reading Crime and Punishment, a master piece in Literature by the way). Since then he has long since redeemed himself. Im glad that is the case I really did not want to have clean up that mess and then drive all over town dumping his individually bagged body parts in random garbage pails, although I probably would have eaten some part of his remains just to see what human tastes like. I bet it just tastes like chicken anyway.

Alfie as expected came home in time for breakfast the next morning and has been home and safe ever since. Turtle however has not been so easy. For a period of about a week he lurked around the premises running under the house every time an attempt for him to be caught was made. We had a chance one night when we cornered him in the garage, myself, Brennan and my neighbor, white trash Travis (this dude was a class A California red neck constantly working on this beat up 1960’s VW Bug, ass crack showing and all). Unfortunately I was a bit drunk after drinking 2 shots of jager and some rum after getting worked up about the whole cat situation and a not so stellar conversation with my mom about the situation. As usual the missing cat was all my fault cause Im irresponsible, a careless low life bum with out a real job. Yeah mom Im sure that is why he ran away you narcissistic bitch (no hostility there).

Net result was the cat gave us the slip by running out the back of a parked car, passed my drunk ass and then did a six foot vertical leap over a fence and was gone (to this day I have never seen a cat jump that high). Next day Travis and Brennan came through with raccoon traps. First night we caught a possum that freaked out and shit all over the place. The second night we successfully captured Turtle. I was not at home, but apparently Brennan brought him up stairs, let him out of the trap and Turtle as usual went nuts and then ran into my room. Brennan went to check on him and heard a tear. Turns out Turtle tore through the screen and jumped out the window. He has not been seen or heard from since.

We continued to put the traps out all week. We caught the same possum again. This time Brennan took him up to the Mission about a mile or so from our house, to prevent him from continuing to spring the traps and a very nice new home I might add, that is a very desirable neighborhood to live in. We did that little guy a favor. Yesterday we caught a skunk the exact scenario we had feared since the inception of the traps. After leaving him there for over 48 hours Brennan finally freed him this morning. The thing sprayed all over the place so now it stinks all around my house and when I left for work this afternoon the stupid beast was still in the trap.

After all this still no sight of Turtle.  At this point Im going to assume he has moved on to a better place (inside a Coyote’s belly), hopefully one still on this plane of existence. Monday I am going to check with all the local animal shelters to see if anyone has turned him in. Overall its pretty shitty since now I only have 50% of the cats I started out with and after I shelled out over a grand to get them both out here, moved off the Mesa for their sake and spent $50 in anti flea paraphernalia. Plus Turtle was like a son to me, sure he was a fucked up hairy little black kid, but mine none the less. Turtle where ever you are I hope your pimping it. I miss you buddy. Please come home.

As you may have figured Turtle never returned.  Since then Brennan and I are still friends and I no longer wish to kill and dismember him.  If you missed out on yesterday’s blog The Paradoxical Plight of the Eunuch Cat check it out cause it is sort of a type of precursor to this one.

Alfie and Turtle circa 2004

Turtle as a kitten, circa 2003

In addition to receiving extra UCB points Kooky also wins one "dont ask dont tell" weekend with this sexy creature. Its on its way to your place at this very moment Kooky!!!!

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This weeks UCB makes a champion of John Mauriello asking a very apropos topic considering the theme of the last few blogs.  He asked I tell about the time Slater gave me one of the best waves I have ever gotten at Rincon and my in my life as well. I actually have two good Slater stories to tell both from the same time of year.  Truth be told both of these have been bloged about back in the myspace days but since it is near impossible for me to look up those archives thanks to Myspace.com’s terrible redesign I believe they may be lost forever.  I guess I will have a lot of retelling to do.

February 4 2008

It was my Birthday and my first winter at Rincon.  At the time I was sleeping on Cory’s couch and just sort of bumming around Santa Barbara.  I hated Rincon up until this faithful day.  Every time I went there I always got burned on the good ones and never seemed to pick the right ones.  This is a common novice complaint at Rincon.  To utilize the spot to its greatest potential one really needs to know where to sit and how to work the crowd.  Two entities that take plenty of time to figure it out.  Im still trying to get it wired.

Every time Cory and I would check Rincon I always bitched and moaned till we went some place else, usually Pitas, Little Con or Cstreet.  This day as we were passing by Rincon it was flawless 6-8ft with off shore winds and looked like a picture a day dreaming slacker would draw in his note book during math class.   Im talking waves as good as waves get.  The crowd looked heavy but the waves pretty consistent.  Against my will Cory forced us to surf it.

He jumped in at the cove as usual, while I went up to River Mouth.  As I was walking up there I noticed some one in a white wet suit directly in front of me.   People were taking pictures and videos.   It could be none other then Kelly Slater.  Him and I paddled out basically side by side through the river mouth and he snagged the first wave.  I had a couple of waves but nothing spectacular.

Then this solid eight footer swung wide and I was in perfect position.  I took off on the thing and it immediately walled up as it hit the sand bar and folded over.  I found myself standing straight up in a wide tube.  Im super deep but steadily making my way out as I went down into a pig dog for more speed.  As Im riding this thing in the barrel for an easy fifty yards people are screaming at me as they are paddling by.

Then right when I was about to come out I fell backwards but some how caught myself in a lay back thus running even deeper in the tube.  By the time I was mid way through this barrel section I looked out and saw Slater look in at me from the shoulder.  He hooted and threw a shaka my way.  Stoked I stood up and pumped out of the pit.  At that point I was at the top of the cove.  I hit the lip as I was passing by Cory who was all hoots.  I ended up call boxing that wave.  It was the first wave I ever call boxed at Rincon and it was on my birthday no less.

When I paddled out into the lineup Slater looked at me and said “that was a sick one”.  Im sure I blushed like an embarrassed little girl.

Mid Fed 2009

This is the story John was asking for.  Those of you who have been part of this blog from back in the Myspace.com days probably remember what a mess I was that year.  Sindia and I had just split up and I was for all extensive purposes partying way too hard subconsciously attempting to drink myself to death.  This session came about courtesy of my boy Brennan, whom with out his motivation would have never left the couch.  It was a Saturday afternoon in Mid-February and Im sure I went way too hard the night before thus sleeping in till well past one.

Brennan showed up around two-ish looking to surf.  I was just sitting down to breakfast at the frat house (it was not a real frat, but since nearly 12 guys ended up moving into my apartment it became an unofficial one).  At like 2:30 thirty we cruised to Rincon.  I did not even know if there was swell running or not I was so out of the loop.  Like I said back then I was a bit unfocused thanks to my mental and emotional state of affairs.

We walked down the trail and it was solid 6-8 ft Rincon super glassy and only about 100 guys out on the entire point.  All of a sudden I went from unmotivated to pure froth.  As I was running up to the river mouth I saw Slater snag one and just rip the shit out of it.  My first wave was a bomb up at low indicator.  This thing had to be solid ten foot if it was an inch.  I barely made the drop/bottom turn on my little 5’10.  When I came around the first section and into my reo some dude completely burned me.  I was moving and it was flawless Rincon so the sections were not too racy.

This dude and I ended up changing tracks a few times and just have a good old time for ourselves.  When the wave reached the cove, he pulled out, gave me a smile and I ripped the thing all the way to the highway falling off just forty yards from the call box because my legs were so tired.  After that wave I ran back up the point to do it again.

Upon paddling back out I saw Slater sitting up at low Indicator.  I sat next to him and made the usual surfer small talk as if he was no one special.  I most likely said something like its pretty fun out here and so on and so forth.  The stock standard surfer lineup bull.  This set came in and it was another group of solid ones.  We let the first one go and the second was just perfect lining up to be another epic ride.  Slater looks ate me and says do you want this one.  I was like really?   Then I turned and went for it.

That wave ended up being amazing.  I had something like two barrels on it and over twenty hits riding the wave from low Indicator all the way to double call box.  When Rincon is flawless it is more then possible to get rides that long.  To this day I think that was the best wave I have ever caught out there.  When I pulled off my wave l looked back and saw Slater finishing up on the one behind it.  I think I only had enough leg power left in me for a dozen or so more.

I ended up paying Slater’s kindness forward towards the very end of my session.  I was in perfect position for this eight footer in mid River Mouth.  As I was paddling for it I saw this chick having a look and I knew for a fact she had yet to get a good one.  Once I saw her paddling I gave her the nod and she got that wave all the way in.  I saw her out later that session and she was very appreciative and said it was most likely the best wave of her entire life.  You see what goes around comes around.  I can only hope that some day she returns the same kindness to some other frustrated surfer in need.

There is nothing like really good Rincon.

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Yesterday we ran the top five sessions from this October being a La Nina year. Today I though it would be fun to write about the best five sessions from last October, the El Nino year and compare the two.  Since it is technically a continuation of Devin’s UCB from yesterday (see What a Difference a Year Makes) he will get a half point for his efforts.  My records from last year were not as good as this year so these are the best out of what I had written down.


5: Rincon Cove, Wednesday 10/14, 8:30am: 3-5ft Bumpy Glass, No one out!

Wednesday marked the third straight day of torrential down pour, the first time it has rained here since May. In that three-day span I think we picked up at least five inches of rain. With rain comes run off and you can only imagine how dirty the runoff is after nearly 6 months of no rain. The result was near toxic water at all river mouth fed breaks (basically every spot here). Coming down there was plenty of swell, Santa Clause Lane in Carpenteria, usually a small shadowed beachie was solid head high and clean.

When Santa Clause looks like that I know to immediately go to Rincon. I pulled into the parking lot and there were only about 5 cars, a bad sign already that it was not working. I on intuition walked down anyway. In front of me was The Cove section of the point with two guys out and lines running all the way past the call box at the bottom of the point, a solid 100 yard plus ride. It looked a little mushy and disorganized but far from something to walk away from.

I ran back to my car and got dressed. The water was completely brown and there was certainly a healthy amount of garbage and dead animals floating around, but the waves too good to stop me. As I was paddling out the two guy who where surfing got out leaving the place all to me. I surfed the cove alone for a solid hour before five other guys showed up, ten guys at the height of the crowd. I ended up surfing till 12:30pm a solid four hours and my legs burned so bad from the absurdly long rights that I almost could not make the walk back up the trail.

I think it is safe to say that number 5 from last year was far better then 5 this year.


4: Little Rincon, Thursday, 10/15, 8:30am: 4-6ft Oil Glass

Manasquan stalwart Kevin Malone decided to make his first winter pilgrimage to Santa Barbara this year and lucked into what I think is the best Little Rincon I have ever surfed. That’s a lie cause number three was the best Little Rincon I have ever surfed. Brook-o actually was the guy who tipped me off on the place although I was rather skeptical since the tide was super high, almost 5ft (Little Rincon barely breaks sometimes on low tide). Not believing his usually overzealous surf reports I had a look at Rincon first, which turned out to completely swamped with the excessive high tide causing me to give Littlie Con’ a shot. Sure enough when Lindsay, Malone and I pulled up I saw a set wave brush the top of the little pier that goes out to this fake little island built by the oil companies for the rigs that created the wave. When that happens you know its solid 6ft at least.

The crowd was light only about 6 heads out and it looked pretty mellow. Sometimes Little Rincon can have a pretty agro crowd and since there is really only one take off zone in front of gnarly rocks 6 guys could be too crowded. This day however that was not the case and there were actually so many waves in each set and good in between waves that lots of waves actually went unridden. I started on my 5’10 but quickly due to the power and intensity had to move to my bigger board, which completely turned the session around.

Before that happened on my second wave I took off super late and deep after this guy sitting deeper then me got hung up in the lip dropping in. I was deep and late but totally confident that I was going to make it. I grabbed my rail and set up for a quick little pig dog off the drop. I guess this older guy sitting a little down the line from me thought that was the end of me and decided to go for the wave underestimating my ability. I ended up coming out of the bottom of the foam ball straight into my bottom turn only to look up at what I expected to be the falling lip I was anticipating on hitting. Instead I see this dude coming right down on top of me. I quickly attempted to torque the section gabbing my rail to cut my bottom turn shorter, but it was to no avail and the guy landed square on top of me. I don’t know what happened but what I do know is someone was looking out for me cause somehow I did not get hurt and my board was fine. Dude was super apologetic and considering the difficulty of the wave I was attempting to make I did not make a big deal of it.

3: 10/23/09 – Little Rincon 6-8ft

The swell went nuts. I was awoken by a call from Dave that Little Rincon was going berserk with the occasional 12 footer sweeping over the pier and cleaning up the entire line up. I grab my 6’1 round tail and I needed every inch of it. It was solid 6-8ft with occasional 10-12ft sets. There were about 15 guys on it but only three of us wanted anything to do with the bombs. I caught some of the best waves I have ever ridden at that spot or even Santa Barbara for that matter.

This is me on one of the small ones from this session

2: 10/24/09 – Pitas 4-6ft+

I got the best Pitas Pt I have ever surfed in my life. It was only about head high to slightly overhead but not a drop of water out of place. Pitas is a very sectiony point unlike Rincon despite its similar proximity in size. Usually if you can bang out three turns or get a quick barrel your stoked on your ride. This session however the lines were just running down the point connecting each section. You still had to be very fast but on the right one the rides had to be close to 300 yards. Did I mention there were barrels too? The crowd at its max was 15 guys and no one was hassling.  My very last wave I rode from the top of the point all the way to the top of Mondos, which is probably close to a 700 yard ride.  To this day it is still the best Pitas I have ever surfed.


1: 10/26/09 – Rincon 5-7ft

I had some friends from NJ visiting for this session and it blew their minds.  I was skeptical on how big it would be, but as we began to get in gazing distance of the top of the point I could tell just by looking at the swells hitting La Conchita that Rincon was solid. I was just sitting there in the back of the car saying “We have to turn around, Rincon is really really good”. Then we passed the point from the highway where it comes into full view and everyone was screaming with pure stoke.

From there it was a mad dash into our wetsuits and down the point, despite one salty local whom I surf with everywhere who upon seeing me with four friends shook his head at me. C’mon due its fucking Rincon. It’s no secret spot and there were 100 people out already anyway. What is four more at that point? California surfers really piss me off with shit like that.

As we come out of the trail and behold the line up it was pretty amazing. Everywhere you looked someone was getting barreled. It was almost stupid. The place looked like a beach break but it was Rincon. The crowd was focused between Lower Indicator and High to

Mid River Mouth. I opted to surf Low River Mouth, High Cove where there was only a handful of people sitting and still plenty of great waves to be had, plus on a 5’9 I was a little under gunned for the well overhead bomb sets coming off the top of the point. I still had to grab my rail on some of my bottom turns to keep from maxing out. I did not bring a bigger board cause I was not expecting there to be so much swell.

Everyone got some really epic waves. Charles was in serious awe of the wave. I think for the rest of his trip if not still mystified by the whole experience. The wave can be a real siren for some. It is the reason I gave up my entire life and moved out here. Alex got some good ones but unfortunately had some equipment malfunctions, ripping out one of the fins off his Merrick keel fish. Then he went back to the car and borrowed Dave’s long board which he subsequently lost to the rocks dinging both the nose and the tail. Mark was buzzing on his new J7, no surprise considering it was Keoni’s magic board. That left a very stoked Dave and I who traded super fun waves in the cove practically to ourselves till we could not see anymore. The whole crew was stoked as could be.
Well I think it is pretty clear that 2009 in October kicked this year in the ass by a landslide.

Nothing like the beautiful view of open face in front of you.

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