Money, money, money. Money. There’s not enough, there’s too much. I say that there’s still plenty to go around, it’s just hiding better than it used to. Want some? During the creation of this issue, which we’ve devoted to sex, money and power in surfing, I learned some things.
Three ways to turn a profit in today’s surf world:
1) Sell T-shirts. They have, by a long shot, the highest profit margin of all the goods sold by surf companies. Do not sell surfboards. You will struggle.
2) Be really, really good at surfing. But, like, the best. Surfers who reach the mainstream are seeing a huge spike in their incomes. Among the first to benefit from this trend was Jordy Smith, who, while I interviewed him on the Gold Coast earlier this year, had a six-figure piece of jewelry delivered to his room. So be among the best, because well-paid homebreak heroes are quickly going extinct. If this is you, find a day job or go back to school. We need more educated rippers, anyway.
3) Socialize. As one industry insider told us this month “…it’s all about impressions, likes, hits, etc.” Tweet your thoughts on the ASP. Instagram your brown rice ahi bowl. Have a blog, for blog’s sake. It’s a way for the rest of the world to connect to you, to get to know you, and, as we see in Hashtag Hunted (on page 108), to get at you. Think the swagger and celebrity of today’s social mediaite is exaggerated? Shortly after photo editor Peter Taras shot the feature, one of the models morphed into the character she was meant to portray and hunted down one of our subjects, then pounced and devoured him. Lucky fella. Social media’s a powerful tool. Please follow us at @surfingmagazine.
And also follow us to the Middle East, with coverman Dion Agius and filmmaker Joe G, where we enjoy the unexpected fruit of oil money in the form of a divine wave pool. With chlorinated ramps a button push away, Dion shows us some futuristic tricks mastered through that thing we’ve always missed in the ocean — replication. But, have we really missed it? The uncertainty is part of the fun, isn’t it? In the ocean, in the surf world. Which is why we’re still here, as surfers, on the coast, surfing, instead of moving to the sweltering desert, poking around for oil.—Taylor Paul