WRESTLING ELEPHANTS

By Jamie Brisick

ONE MINUTE DISCO

If I’ve got the story straight, the One Minute Disco traces back to a cassette tape that got stuck in a car stereo. Everywhere the driver went, the first sixty seconds of Billy Idol’s “Hot In The City” accompanied him. Rather than try to pry the tape out, he made it his theme song. When the car finally broke down, he thought it only right to memorialize this peculiar ritual.

For much of the Port Eliot Festival’s storied history, the One Minute Disco happened on the hour, every hour. Festival-goers would drop whatever they were doing, shake their hips and throw their hands in the air for sixty seconds, then go back and pick up where they left off, a kind of espresso shot, or prayer, or simulation of losing one’s virginity.

This year the One Minute Disco made a surprise appearance. On the final day, at exactly 8:00 p.m., a familiar-looking truck rolled through the festival grounds, making sporadic stops and liberating exhausted hips. As word spread, it became a kind of pied piper, a trail of bouncing bodies following behind.

Here’s stop #2:

July 25, 2011

BEHIND THE BIG TOP TENT AT PORT ELIOT FESTIVAL

July 25, 2011

HAD I CAUGHT THAT BUS…

...THAT WOULD HAVE DELIVERED ME TO THE MALL WHERE I WAS SUPPOSED TO MEET THE PCP DEALER BACK IN 7TH GRADE…

birth
summer camp with mr. skaff
altar boy
egging cars
killing squirrels with slingshot
street fight
sneaking into eric d’s mom’s liquor cabinet and pounding shots of old grandad
street fights
smoking resin at jen the lodies house
pcp score at topanga mall
purse snatch
pizza delivery dude beatdown
wrecking tommy v’s camaro on the way to nugent concert with open container and possession with intent to sell
quentin for the next six fuckin years
the bible
jesus and serious weight lifting
welcome back kotter reruns
free at long fuckin last
fucked up, but sexually electric marriage to world famous but fading porn actress
meetings
reality tv show
promo tour across the us
on-screen fight with dickwad camera fucker
relapse (oxycontin, mostly)
hotel lobby fight with nikki
drug store raid gone horribly wrong
back to fuckin quentin
bigmouth cuts a deal but gets shanked in the tv room
mean staph infection
seven years with not one fucken letter from the fuckin bitch
nights with biendl
bible study
meetings
god grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, courage to change the things we can, and wisdom to know the difference
staph infection progresses
god give me the detachment to accept those things I cannot alter
death

July 17, 2011

TORTURED BY SIDEWALKS

"Tortured by sidewalks...open to anything, ready to introduce a new world with a shrug."  —Jack Kerouac

July 17, 2011

WIGGLE FOR FREEDIA

In the future, we will make love not with our genitals, but rather with our smartphones.

July 16, 2011

LAUGHING UNDERWATER

I’d been dreaming of Jeffreys Bay since the time I watched a full wetsuit-clad Shaun Tomson fly across its machine perfect rights in Storm Riders at the Tarzana 4-Plex in ’82. An exquisitely arced pointbreak near Cape St. Francis, South Africa, J-Bay delivers one the world’s longest rides. During the swell season from May to September, surfers from all corners of the globe make the pilgrimage. Some never leave.

     On an overcast day in June, a couple of fellow pros and I pulled into the parking lot that overlooks Supertubes, the finest of J-Bay’s many sections, just in time to witness a procession of double overhead, hypnotically perfect waves peel off to infinity. There were at least fifty guys sprinkled along the lava rock point, but the waves were so relentless it hardly seemed an issue. We couldn’t get out there fast enough. Boards were slung from roof racks, Air Jordans were hurled across rear seats, wetsuits and booties were anxiously shimmied into.

     I paddled out at Boneyards, the tip of the point. The water was a frigid fifty-eight degrees. After duckdiving a fleet of waves that induced spasms of ice cream headache, I maneuvered into position. The sky was the same shade of grey as the water, making it hard to distinguish bumps. To my left were swarms of surfers; to my right, no one.

     A set marched in. I bolted for the horizon. The first wave crested, and as I pierced through the back, needles of icy offshore spray rained down on my head. The second wave stood up perfectly. I stroked, angled, popped to my feet.

     The silvery face stretched out for a mile, a racecourse of steep, dimpled, twelve-foot wall. I dropped to the bottom, turned, and held my line. The curtain heaved over my shoulder and suddenly, effortlessly, I was standing in a gleaming tube. It roared the way a shell held to your ear does. Out of the almond shaped hole, I watched surfers stroke over the top.

     I came out, dropped to the bottom, and again, pulled into a high tube. Swirling water whooshed past. Cool air blustered up from the crashing lip. As the tapering swell rounded Supertubes, it yawned and released me. Out of the corner of my eye I glimpsed Marty Thomas, Chuy Reyna, Barton Lynch, Vetea David, Octavio Bueno—a veritable UN of pros—all hooting.

     I scaled to the crest, arced tenderly, and barreled to the bottom, my 6’7” Rusty swallowtail chattering against the surface chop. The wave steepened. The lip pitched. Again, I pulled in tight and held my line. In that perfect little cocoon of spinning Indian Ocean, I watched the curtain zipper past, falling in sheets of spidery glass. My exit shrunk. The mirror-like face turned frothy, ribbed. In a kind of cartoon of childbirth, the tail of my board lifted and shot me forward. My face slapped the hard water; the turbulence wrestled me down. I felt ecstatic. If it were possible to laugh underwater I would have.

July 14, 2011

THINGS THAT CAUGHT MY EYE IN NEW ORLEANS

FABULOUS FORNICATION

July 12, 2011

SOMEONE STRANGELY ENFRANCHISED, UNTAMED, UNTRAMMELLED BY CONVENTION

"The world looks with some awe upon a man who appears unconcernedly indifferent to home, money, comfort, rank, or even power and fame. The world feels not without a certain apprehension, that here is someone outside its jurisdiction; someone before whom its allurements may be spread in vain; someone strangely enfranchised, untamed, untrammelled by convention, moving independent of the ordinary currents of human action." 
     -Winston Churchill, politician and statesman (1874-1965) 

July 4, 2011

ON THE STREETS OF CHINATOWN, NYC…

July 1, 2011

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