Smart means ‘well dressed’ in English, and ‘clever’ in American. Are you smart, or smart?
I reckon I’m capable of carrying out a homicide, yes.
OK then. Have you ever bought a copy of Surf Europe? And if yes, did you feel ripped off?
Yeah a couple of times… not really, it’s good to see what’s going on around Europe and seeing what people are up to.
What’s it like coming from Sennen, pretty much the very end of the UK?
It’s good because the surf scene isn’t that offensive and the waves are good and uncrowded, it’s pretty quirky. It’s bad because you’re miles away from contests and the areas where everyone surfs, films, takes photos etc. If you’re from where I’m from it’s easy to be an underground wash up.
Cornwall has a bit of a rep for below average surf… Are you going to try and tell us otherwise?
It’s pretty fucked. But there is a door, a few in fact, and I have the keys. Growing up
I surfed shore breaks, I’ve never minded gnarly waves, as long as the water isn’t too deep. I’d rather eat reef or sand in solid waves than sink about 20 metres and have trouble getting to the surface. That’s gnarly.
Where do you stand on the Piran Cross Kernow bumper sticker thingy?
You know when some people are that offensive that they become legends? You think to yourself, they have gone past the point of being irritating and lame, you just gotta call em legends…
You’re a goofyfoot, you do airs, you were on Rip Curl as a grom, you go to Indo… What are you gonna do that Reubyn Ash doesn’t?
Hard question, I’d like to surf more with Reubs because we both surf and skate and mix it up and we’re both freesurfers. I have a different style to him so I’d say we’re both different in style and approach.
What other stuff do you apart from surfing?
I used to box, I had three fights in Essex and won them all, my brother is a professional. I only stopped training with him a year ago as I lost interest and my left hand is disfigured from a break. I skate a lot and I actually quite like squash, it’s endless and gives me a break from reality.
Would you go back into boxing if surfing didn’t work out?
I don’t think so, I’m not really as confused and angry as I was, when I was boxing I wanted to become professional in the back of my mind, I wanted to be a maniac and train every single day and be lethal. Now I just want to keep pretty fit, happy, safe and keep surfing. When I was really into boxing my world seemed kind of two dimensional even though it wasn’t. But I dont think I’ll even get back into the training
You got on the cover of UK surf mag Carve recently… Did you get laid?
Yeah I was happy about that. But I was in Indonesia at the time, and I have a girlfriend at home.
What do you think of UK womenfolk? Are they boozing, fighting, eating fried food and getting pregnant at 14?
There is a lot of under age pregnancy and encouragement to have a kid to get a free council house, that’s true. Er, the rest is kind of partly true, I guess.
Are they violent?
I got my front tooth kicked out by a fat chick once in Cornwall when I was younger. I had just been jumped by a load of dudes, after getting my head kicked around few times I sat against a wall relaxing, rolling a cigarette, then out of nowhere this fat chick runs up and booted me in the face. Didn’t see her coming, very sly.
Tell us a bit about your Indo travels.
Came to Bali in November, then Sumatra for a month, back to Bali for a short while, off to Lakeys, then to the Tower of Isengard, off to the Lighthouse of Alexandria and after that I had a quick stop off at the Black Gates of Mordor. I’m currently preparing for the Mentawais in a couple of weeks, that should be fun. Indo’s been good but I’m getting a little bit sick of it.
Sick of it?
I’ve been through thick and thin, lots of money, no money, totally broke, homeless, boardless, ill, hospitalised…
It’s a shame to see that if you have no money here you’re pretty worthless, I hate how some people here tend to assume all white people are really rich. I explained to a Balinese dude the other day that there is more poverty in the UK than here, and that there’s a lot more crime. He just ignored me and then changed the subject. But on a whole it’s been good, I feel my surfing has progressed.
It can be a bit seedy too…?
After staying in Uluwatu for a couple of months you begin to see seedy things and you begin to notice things. Tourist chicks whoring for example, kinda heavy scenes.
What do you do to relax, have a good time? Are you boozy? Is the pub a good or a bad time?
I like to put my feet up at home or somewhere with a couch and a TV. I like to chill with my girlfriend with wine and a film or hang out with some friends, play poker. I like art and listening to music, music gets me thinking a bit sometimes.
Surfers, just like a lot of people, have been long associated with recreational drugs. What are your thoughts on that subject?
Things were a little rocky for me in my mid-teens. I guess it was a bit silly, I got into some drug use.
Ecstasy, cocaine… ‘party’ drugs I guess. I enjoyed it because it was new and it would change me and I could let go of loads of shit, also of course because it made me feel good. Although the good feeling is totally false, not natural. You get the odd hippy that says it’s natural, but it really isn’t. Ask them that the next day when they’re sat at an afterparty in a room that suddenly resembles a box with repeating music suddenly avoiding eye contact with individuals they were so close and open to, looking forward only to unconsciousness and escape. After a few too many of those dark, consuming feelings… and after some education, realization and maturity, I jumped off the drug train.
Drugs kind of repulse me now. If I ever have a night out until closing time of a club or even if I wake up really early and it begins to get light, I get reminded of times I spent staying awake all night buzzing, then getting that hideous come down feeling just as the sun rises. It’s a pretty harsh reminder.
What about weed smoking before surfing… performance enhancing?
Definitely not. Cannabis definitely didn’t enhance anything in me… I just felt lazy and would want to go chill somewhere warm and relax. I do know people who can’t surf without a joint, or some kind of pick me up, but how that works I just don’t know. How people keep that shit up is unreal.
Where do you see yourself ending up later in life?
I’d like to think I’ll end up with a nice family of my own, in a cottage somewhere with an open fire, paintings, art, a nice TV. Domestic bliss, I guess. That would be nice. That’s quite a lot later in life though.