Blue-ZenKoan (1)Much of surfing isn’t even about surfing. I realize that may sound like some Japanese Zen koan like if a wave crashes on the shore, and nobody is around, does it make a sound?

Look, I am not trying to be smart here, it’s like attempting to describe the delicious taste of foam to a landlubber friend.

How do you explain to someone who doesn’t surf what that delicious taste of saltwater taffy does to you when it fills your mouth while going over the falls unexpectedly. Likewise, how could they understand when you come up laughing and smiling after water shoots up your nostrils like an espresso enema.

Sometimes when I am out there sitting deep in that big blue womb of life that covers 70% of this globe, I slip away into a Pabst-Blue-Ribbon-like-coma of elation, and in those moments I sense all of life.

You know what I mean, right?

As the pelicans dive-bomb around you for fishy vittles, the off-shore winds traverse across the salty surface, and the swells undulate below like a poll dancer cracked out on too much red bull, you slip further away from all the stress and problems of life.

In fact, who cares about hearing a wave crashing (remember the koan) when you and I have the possibility of living with the sea in its totality, and experiencing a lifetime feast (and festival) of surfing.

If you too are sitting at this oceanic table, please remember to honor and celebrate the salt water high of your life.


Derek Dodds

Derek Dodds is founder of the world's first ecological surf company Wave Tribe, surfboard shaper, world traveler, author and Mini Simmons enthusiast.

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Meet Surfer Derek Dodds

Derek Dodds | Surfer, Shaper, Traveler
I'm Derek Dodds, the guy behind I love surfing, shaping, adventure travel, IPAs, useful gear, and all things related to the sea.