The 0 to 10 scoring scale, you see, is just so boring, so square . . . so philosophically naïve. A scale that permits the possibility of a 10.01 or an 11 is far more fun and far more appropriate, its apparent absurdity a playful acknowledgement that in surfing, objective adjudication is ultimately an illusion.
The use of such a scale is one of several details that distinguish the Da Hui Back Door Shootout both as a royal good time and a fine surf contest. Been watching? No? Shame, shame on you! Kaimana Henry, the best named and at this stage highest placed surfer on the leaderboard, is the only recipient of an 11-point ride in the event so far — although some will question the validity of his exit, and consider the judges’ call a trifle generous. A 10, sure, but an 11?