Thursday, December 24, 2015

the last book I ever read (Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William Finnegan, excerpt four)

from Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life by William Finnegan:

Steve Painter also helped turn me toward surfing. His interest was unrelated to the old-school involvement with the ocean of people like the Beckets—or, for that matter, the Kaulukukuis. It derived instead from the fad that had swept America a few years before—the Gidget movies and their spin-offs, surf music, surf fashion. Large numbers of kids on both coasts had bought boards and started surfing. Magazines, particularly Surfer, had become the main conduit of the surf subculture’s self-celebration, and Painter and his junior-high friends read the mags avidly and talked, with increasing authority, in the new language they found there. Everything was “bitchen” or “boss” and anyone they didn’t esteem was a “kook” (an insult usually reserved for an incompetent surfer—the term derives from kuk, a Hawaiian word for excrement).

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