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16 October 2014
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Surfing Squirrel contemplates life as a shrimp

Surf Guru

A beginner's guide to becoming a surf guru by Surfing Squirrel (Surf Guru 4th Dan)

So you've learned to surf. You've sold your 'pop out' to an unsuspecting tourist and traded in your pink and yellow steamer for a wetsuit that makes Spiderman look under dressed. You can get to your feet in under 10 seconds and can wear a silly hat without feeling stupid. You even quite like death metal rap. So you've got it sussed - surely there is more to this surf malarkey?

Quite simply - yes there is!

You are ready to take the next step in your surfing evolution, and become a surf guru. You can learn to speak with authority on the esoteric of surf forecasting, wave conditions, board shaping, and other fascinating subjects such as how you surfed Hossegor in mid summer with only Occy, Pottz and a bottlenose dolphin in the line-up. The best part is that you can do all this with all the surf knowledge of a brain addled swamp hen! Surely that is not possible, I hear you say.? Nay, I retort - in five simple steps you too can become a surf guru. Read on...

Rule 1: Get a catchy name.
Preferably get something mystical or Red Indian sounding like 'Rainbow Sun' or 'Walks with A Limp'. Why not have the word Guru in it? Self-proclamation leaves the lesser surfer in no doubt as to your guru credibility. Alternatively show your connection with nature by adopting an animalistic title like Eagle or Snake, so applying all these principles to maximum effect you could get a real catchy name such as 'Guru Limp Snake'.

Rule 2: Talk with confidence about wave formation & surfboard design
You don't even have to really know jack-shoot! Once you have mastered a few simple concepts, you are on the path to enlightenment. To simplify your path to guru-hood I have summarised these key concepts for you:

Wind - the thing you can't see that blows your hair about in a triumphant manner whilst you stand on the beach and look meaningfully out to sea.

Fetch - an excellent command for any well trained dog and the distance over which the wind (see above) blows in order to create waves.

Wave(s) - a bulbous dynamic agglomeration of sea water that gets your blond permed hair inconveniently wet if you're not concentrating.

Period - the length of time that successive waves (see above) take to pass an arbitrary fixed point, such as the west coast of Ireland, or one of those silly blue sheds on Langland Beach.

Blown out - waves that you have arranged to surf on the previous day, only to call up in the afternoon and cancel saying you are dreadfully sorry but you had forgotten that you had arranged to take your mother to the vet. Putting these together in a conversation with the less worthy surfer, one would say something like:

"Dude! The wind is way too fetchy. It's maxing out the period. These waves are gonna be blown out for eons".
Become the board
If you need to deliver the killer blow, then casually use the term "cnoidal wave theory" in any discussion of wave quality. Even the most knowledgeable surfer will bow in deference to your obviously superior and guru-like qualities.

But what about board design? Easy tiger, I'm coming to that! Board design is again a matter of using the right words in any order that sounds impressive. Key words are rail, rocker, stringer, fin set-up, concave, fishtail, pintail, and snoop trundle. If you feel you need more guidance on this, I recommend putting a suitable query asking for information on the OTL message board. Guri (plural of guru) will trip over their sandaled feet in the rush to provide you with all the misinformation you will ever need.

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