Thursday, March 03, 2005

Gypsy Madness

Back to blogging again! Previously I limited myself to two posts a day for fear of looking as if I had no life. But for the next couple of days, to make up for my week off, I will blog without limit. (In my next post, I will explain why I abandoned my blog readers, all four of them, an explanation that involves undercover advertising, and sausages.) Anyway, to herald the return of blogging and signal a new phase in my life, I have changed my cell-phone ring. My last ring was called “Espionage” and did not summon thoughts of espionage. My new ring is called “Mountain,” and is nothing like a mountain (unless perhaps they meant a mountain encircled by a funicular railway with a hurtling train driven by a lunatic). “Mountain” would be more appropriately named “Carnival of Freaks” or “Bedlam Boogie.” It is such a crazy, helter-skelter little tune that I can’t help wondering who composed it. Is there someone who does this full-time? Perhaps a frustrated musician with a phone in his head that never stops ringing, someone whose great dream is to write a piece that lasts longer than five seconds? Every time I hear my new ring, I imagine this man, channeling all his pent-up frustration into composing it—then doing a wild dance before running away to play his banjo with the gypsies.


Blogger Tommy Barrett said...

(This is post is not directly related to any of your posts Helena, but, if anything, to your concentrated fan base (all 4 devotees) as well as some of your frustration with book proposals lately. Please bear with me.)

I have had the Mavericks’ surf competition on my mind a bit today, probably because it concluded yesterday. The winner took home $25,000 as well as the title and honor of having won this big wave competition. And, it is a well earned honor. Mavericks is a surf break, about ½ mile of the shore just south of Half Moon Bay. It gets 25 to 35 foot waves. The water is frigid. The waves often come crashing down in a rocky area that has cost at least one surfer his life in the past. Oh, and just for good measure, it’s an area where great white sharks are known to breed.
In the past decade, as Mavericks has become known throughout the world of big wave surfing, the number of competitors has increased, and the spectators who watch from the bluffs has also exploded. They were estimating a crowd of 5,000 to 10,000 spectators yesterday. If you have ever seen folks ride these enormous waves, then you know how impressive and thrilling it is.

But, what I have really had on my mind is not so much the competition but one person in particular: Jeff Clark. Jeff Clark is a Half Moon Bay native. Beginning in 1975, and for the next 15 years, Clark regularly rode Mavericks, by himself. There were no fans, no spectators, no trophies, no beach bunnies, no prize money, no recognition. The only competition was with himself, and to avoid the imminent death all around. There was just this guy, on his surf board, in an ocean of great white sharks and giant waves, all alone; a maverick before there was Mavericks.

1:09 PM  
Blogger Helena said...

That was so inspiring Tommy, and I'm not being ironic. Why do you not blog yourself?

2:01 PM  
Blogger Tommy Barrett said...


Thanks for the kind comment and I am glad you likey. :) To answer your question, I have considered it and I may at some point, if for no other reason to sharpen and clarify my thinking. There are a number of philosophical matters in different I sense are vaguely connected but have yet to really make those connections. In the meanwhile, I'd prefer to read and respond to your blogs... TB

4:40 PM  

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