Wednesday, January 2, 2008

NO SUCH THING AS RETRO

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As we all move irreversibly forward through the intangible boundary of the beginning of another revolution around the Sun, I figure it's an appropriate time to share my personal thoughts on the word "retro" in relation to surfing.
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Now, I know I've been accused of over-thinking things from time to time, but the word "retro" dumbs things down a bit much for my taste. As a term/label it only serves to satisfy the human nature to classify, categorize, and describe within the limits of language what is actually a boundless and indescribable experience.
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Whether above or below the lip, surfing, regardless of board type, is a way for us wingless humans to simulate the feelings of flight. Different board designs offering different types and feelings of flight. There is nothing about a wingless animal achieving the feeling of flying that can be properly classified as retrogression/retrograde.
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Not only are all modes of surfing physical acts that allow us to experience the feeling of having the wings our species never did, nor will ever physically have, but are also a way for our minds to reach a state of timelessness while ever moving through the time/space continuum. Therefore, regardless of the type of board under one's feet, belly, knees, or even board-less body surfing for that matter, "retro" in relation to surfing does not, nor will it ever, exist. All acts of surfing metaphysically push the evolution of man future forward.
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Photo by David Pu'u. Ripped from cover of Surfer's Journal (Volume 9, Number 5).
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Note: I'm not some grump that's gonna shake my head when someone uses the term "retro" in conversation with me. I don't expect everyone to agree, and I'm sure there are intelligent opinions to the contrary. But if anyone hears the word come out of my mouth in the future... feel free to smack me up side the head.
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10 comments:

Daniel said...

Well put.

Chum said...

I agree. I'm blown away by the photo and how the light makes a perfect circle... to infinity!

R.T. said...

thanks, and stoked to hear like minds.

the circle of light is a pretty amazing moment to have captured... i couldn't help but to think it was the perfect image to illustrate my thoughts. gotta appreciate the eye/work of david pu'u!

Anonymous said...

Wow! After reading that, I think I flashed back to the sixties! That's some "retro" "like" thinking!!!

R.T. said...

like i said, i don't expect everyone to agree. that's fine that that's where your head is at.

history has left us with a lot of different tools. using them doesn't = regressing into the past. for example, the wheel.

twinfin said...

I prefer to take the past and invest it's lessons in the future. Too much classification of creative forces and experiences only discounts the end result. In my opinion, Progressive thoughts and alternatives to the standard are what its about for me..

pranaglider said...

Agreed, "retro" is a marketing term used to sell a product. Surfing in this case. In a larger sense, not only can we not be retro but we can't be futuro either. Nothing ever exists but the moment. To end on a lighter note "Petro maybe, but retro can't be"

R.T. said...

yes! the moment. the variable moment... sometimes i'm conscious of a new moment with every breath, and sometimes the whole day can feel like a single moment. time's a trippy thing... how it can compress and decompress in terms of our physical manifestations and mental perceptions of it— and yet we try, and sometimes need, to measure it with strict sets of mumbers.

to continue with the lighter note... love how fast time flies on my petro fish!

...actually, prana-g, ever the well grounded voice of reason... although humorously delivered, you bring up a very important/serious point! Thank you.

ras said...

I always thought of surfing as riding time. I mean we use our own volition to catch energy moving through space (or water in our case)and for a moment we ride time until the energy changes into another form. for a moment we are time, or timeless as our thoughts exit during the glide.

retro? or futoro? surfboards are time machines

churp said...

Its sucks the "thruster" locked so many dudes into a single line, but I think poeple are changing. Alot of poeple are opening up and trying out alternative concepts. Lets concentrate on that. The only dudes using the word "retro" are the dudes who are constantly bumbed out in the water. Let'm be bumbed, If it wasn't "retro" they would just be bumbed about something else.
I think its funny to watch'm all pouty and grumpy.