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Posts Tagged ‘2006’

I know what your thinking, “another blast from the past”.  Reruns suck, but since this stuff is like four years old I find it rather interesting and worth a read.  Syndication is great.  Kooky and I are currently working our way through all nine seasons of Seinfeld in sequential order.  It has become quite the task. 

So I wrote this blog back in May of 2006.  It is back in my competition days as a failing professional surfer.  Every year they had this big contest in NJ that took place on the best day of the fall and only the best of the best from NJ were invited to it.  If you did not get an invitation (mine always got lost in the mail) there was a qualifier event for it where the top three guys would get spots.  This blog is about the 2006 qualifier.  Enjoy.

Another year.  That’s what went through my head when it was announced that I was eliminated from the 2006 Grudge Match Trials.  I’m not complaining, although making a Semifinal berth I was definately tasting it.  It was not meant to be.  This was not my year.

The sea was angry on Sunday my friends.  I pulled up to Meters (Meters is this trashy beach break they held the contest at to save money on a permit for Casino pier, a way better surf spot just about a few miles north.  It is called Meters cause the entire parking lot is filled with parking meters and the only free parking is four blocks in land) in Seaside Park at about 8am and am greated by the competive portion of the Jenks Militia (The Jenks Militia was this militant group of surfers who attempted to keep the crowds down a this decent little spot Jenks in NJ.  They thought they were tough but when push came to shove it was just another case of stupid localism that I the time I whole heartily bought into) , Brian “Slobby” Robinson, Dalton Johnson and Neil Bergen.  Slob was like “its retarded out there”.   I went up to the beach to check it and it is about 6-8 foot plus out of contol dumping heavy strom chop.  Im just like fuck another year wasted.

I go to check in, usually Im in round 1 or 2 and I hate that cause you dont really get a chance to feel out the contest scene.  This particular day though I was hoping to go early so that I did not have to watch the gnarl all day.  We all know how my luck works.  I drew Heat 12 the last heat of round 1.

I camped out on the beach about 50 yards from the contest area, just far enough to hear the announcments but far enough not to be recognized or noticed.  For me this is standard contest procedure.  I need to focus, get in the zone and I need to keep to myself for atleast the first few heats.

After watching the first 5 heats and seeing everyone getting annihilated with already 2 broken boards in, I was getting a bit freaked out.  I was feeling a little anxious and over the conditions.  In a moment of extreme adversity I even seriously considered throwing the event and going home.  This was not a realistic option though cause Smith my sponsor was putting on the event and it ould look real bad if me one of thier team guys was a no show.

So with the encouragement of Sindia and Slobby I maned up and got ready for my heat.  At the advice of Maffucci I paddled out down at Fun Town Pier nearly 400 yrds North of the contest zone.  It although a bit unnecessary worked out nicely since I found a nice chanel in between 2 sand bars there.

The heat began and for the life of me I could not find a wave that even looked remotely ridable.  Everything looked like death to me.  10 minutes went by and I had still yet to catch a wave.  All the while my competitors were getting worked by the ones that they were taking.  Finally using the last 5 min adrenaline I picked off a 6 ft left, came off the bottom and hit a gnarly close out section for my first wave.  Then I snuck back out and picked off another mid-sized left, ran the barrel and doggy doored out before the wave ate me alive. Lucky for me I drew an easy heat with nobodies in it and somehow won the heat.  I was stoked on one hand for the win but a little nervous about having to paddle back out there.  It was definitely scary and I have charged a lot of crazy surf.

My quarterfinal heat came up and it is pretty stacked.  I got my boy Slobby in the heat, This kid from down south who beat me in the Golden Glove and some other older guy.  Dont ever count out the older guys especially when the conditions are big and chunky.  I was not about to make another Amo Mistake.  Amo was the Rip Curl rep at the time and this fat disgusting older guy who surfed like shit but everyone kissed his ass anyway to get deals on gear.  I was not one of them.  He beat me in the quarter finals at some pro-am. I left the guy alone and did my own thing meanwhile he frothed and some how surfed the heat of his life.

The surf had gotten a bit more organized but also began to feather way the hell outside and had amplified to atleast 10ft on set. I dont know what changed inside me from round 1 to the quarters, but all of a sudden I just got in a zone and the size no longer fazed me.  I from the opening bells to the closing bells charged and killed the biggest waves of the quarter finals as many has told me later.  I thought I should have won the heat, the judges gave me second.  Who really cares cause both spots advance.  Slob got worked real hard on a gnarly one and went in mid heat.

Now I was in the Semis and feeling incrediable.  At this point I began to think that I had a shot at winning the thing.  I had a pretty stacked Semi (Semis are always pretty stacked) Nick Blunda my ESA foe from last years season, him and I were neck and neck all year till I eventually clinched the title at the last contest of the year.  Pat Emery and amazing seasoned competitor and 2 times Easterns Masters Champ and Super Grom Rob Kelly who had just come off a win at the NSSA Scholastics in Florida against the East Coast’s best.  Needless to say a tough heat.

I surfed this heat similiar to my last grabbing bombs.  The only problem was most with exception of 2 were close outs and out of those 2 only one was a really exceptional score.  I knew Kelly had first cause he was picking of safe insiders and getting turns in.  Blunda was out of the mix trying for a right that was not really happening down the beach.  This left just Pat and me with 2 minutes left on the clock and I had Pat edged out.  With 30 seconds left I nab a bomb that like many others closed out on me.  When I get to the beach I turn to see Pat pick off this right with 5 seconds left and proceed to get barrelled, come out and then hit it twice.  I knew then that I was done for.  Thats the story of my life.

Pat went on to take 2nd in the finals along with Kelly in 3rd and some old guy from Ocean City won it.  Dave Warner from LBI got 4th earning the first alternate spot.  Some say they thought I got robbed and should have beat out Kelly in the Semi.  I say the judging was probaly pretty accurate although my one good wave in the Semis should have been an 8.  Im stoked for Pat.  The guy  is old and does not have as much time left as I do.  Time goes fast and now I am old, but I also looking back find it comical how much this stupid shit meant to me.  

As far as the product toss goes if Sindia had come we would have cleaned up, but she was previously engaged.  I scored a hat but then forgot it on the beach.  Plus I fell wierd beating younglings for product from my own sposors when they send me the same shit for free anyway.  Over all though I can’t complain too much.  I surfed the best I could have possibly surfed and came up short.  Ill get em next year. I did not get them next year instead getting injured.  Fuck competitive surfing and all the hoopla around it.  Just surf and have a great time doing it and you will always be a winner.

Chris Lisanti is a fucking goon

One of my hits from the event. Look at that wonderful wing span.

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