Monday, December 26, 2011

Time Pieces

I still remember the furtive glances and stolen moments at the magazine aisle . Somehow, somewhere, in the darkness of my late Eighties Pacific Northwest youth, some local pharmacy-department-grocery store merchandiser thought it would be a sensible thing to stock surfing mags next to People and Time and I had been thrown into an illicit affair.  The initial inspiration probably something happening halfway between the moment I traded in my planks for a snowboard and my older brothers relocating to Southern California;  something then between the sheer boredom of the snowboarding magazines (located just to the right of the surfy ones on the periodicals rack) and the frustration with the oppressive mountain culture in which I'd been raised (oppressive a self-inflicted determination). Either way, both ways, whatever way, the bright blue water, the dappled sunshine and the goofball fluorescence drew for my mind's eye a picture of warm liberation.  It would still be a handful of years before my own relocation, a handful of years spent eschewing skateboard tricks on my snowboard in favor of fitting in as many long arcing carves and snow spraying tail snaps as the Cascade ice drifts would allow, and a handful of years collecting, somewhat surreptitiously, a small library of surfing magazines, hot of the presses, or as hot as they can get with all that northern distance to travel.   So really, it was a handful of years as a kook, a wannabe and a poseur.  
Jump ahead to a few days ago, rummaging around in my old boxes stuffed away in a closet for safe keeping at my mother-in-law's Carlsbad house, I come across a milk crate stuffed with the detritus of that harrowing time.  There in the reliquary I find the first couple surf magazines I dared purchase. The first ones I didn't just leaf through with angsty young digits while my mother bought the groceries, but had gotten up the gumption to buy to take home.  First Surfing and then coming back with confidence for Surfer. Flipping through them now I can still feel the ignorant awe I held of the Rasta Schwarzenegger, Archie's tattoos and the improbable comeback of Tom Curren.  After so many years of being in and then out and then back in the water again, It's nice to reconnect with that little moment of self discovery.


Jack said...

I remember every one of those pages.


Toddy said...

Ah, and yours the more requitted love.