Surfing, Skateboarding, Music, Photography, Travel, Culture and general antics of the youth on the run.

Forced Creativity In a Musty Place Or, the art of throwing empty pint glasses at a laptop and expecting results

what youth dear youth

“Writing is the flip side of sex — it’s only good when it’s over.” —Hunter S. Thompson

 Editor’s note: Here’s something(one) new. James Royce is a young surfer/writer dude from California who’s been submitting and writing a few things here and there for us. Just another one of us trying to navigate all this shit we find ourselves in and make sure there’s a surf or two mixed in. I liked this. Probably because he went into a bar and left with something more than just a good buzz. Anyway, meet James. —Travis

 I’m writing this from a dark spot. Literally. The light above me is flickering. I’m at my local dive bar. A place walking distance from my house. It has all the classic characteristics. Cracked red booths, clientele that could be easily be Beyond Thunderdome stand-ins, a general air of destitute. You’d be forgiven if you mistook it for a truck stop with a liquor license. But the beer’s cold and cheap so I’m happy.

I promised myself I’d have a completed article by now. Five-hundred or something words on something. Anything. A short story perhaps. Maybe a science-fiction drama. Something about a man who invents a time machine just so he can fuck around with the course of history. Give Krotons a bunch of steroids to freak out the Spartans during the first Olympics. Hand Bruce Brown a RED camera then surprise Mike Hynson and Robert August at Cape St. Francis by paddling out on a thruster. Kidnap Joseph Stalin and make him watch Vines Clockwork Orange style. But then I hated that idea as soon as I opened up a word document. There’s no glory sounding like a discount Philip K. Dick.

So I looked elsewhere. Towards surfing. I watched Turtle Bay Resort’s premier awards show. (Hey, Chapter 11 won movie of the year — that’s a bit epic.). But I couldn’t find anything to get fired up about between all the backslapping. Then I remembered Pipe is coming up. But then I realized I barely know who’s in the world title race as I haven’t watched a contest since Lowers (RIP) and apparently a lot has happened since then. Ideas, dead ends, what’s allowed to live and die on the page all meshed into one. Anxiety started creeping in. I was stuck. Frozen. Was it finally time to drive out to the middle of the desert with a suitcase stocked full of various stimulants, hallucinogens, and libations? Do I go for a hard reset?

No. Dramatics never solve a thing.

And that’s how I ended up in the local haunt. This mildew ridden place. Where amenities like color TV, surround sound, and air conditioning are proudly advertised on a sign out front. One man’s daily conveniences are another’s technological triumphs. It’s funny, I’ve lived down the road from here my whole adult life yet have never made a conscious effort to drop in until now. The only reason I decided to saunter in three beers ago was because it seemed like a good idea at the time. Escape the stress. And now I don’t have any desire to leave. There’s no wifi — thus no distractions. The music’s good (new wave hits on heavy rotation) and I have a booth to myself. No one’s shot me a weird look while I pound away on my laptop. I have neither any complaints nor any intentions of leaving anytime soon. Hell, slamming an empty glass onto my keyboard and expecting results might be my soundest plan at this point. Going nuclear on the piss worked for Faulkner, Joyce, Bukowski and a slew of other greats. It’s worth a shot. And once I snap back to reality and realize I’ve failed spectacularly to get a thing done, home is just a short walk away. But I did leave with this in my laptop. It’s just as useful as it is useless. See ya soon. —James Royce    

 

 

Right, so the WSL starts again next week And hello, yes, we have some questions and concerns. Five exactly.

It is 6:30 am, picture the scene. It is 6:30 am and the crack of dawn in San Diego and I’m paying for a latte at the coffee shop I frequently go to. “And what,” the barista says as he takes my cash. “What do you think about the upcoming WSL season? What with the…

A quick ode to Uncle Gav Please buy this legend a cold beer. He is a surfing treasure.

Yesterday you heard we went to Samoa and got hit by a cyclone before finding blue tubes and cold beers in it’s wake at Salani Surf Resort. You also saw that Gavin Beschen was there. Well, Gavin flew in from Hawaii by himself, and in true Gavin fashion showed up to the camp solo, 8…

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“Where ya been?” A little update on our recent movements

Don’t you just love when people ask you that? Well, we do. And people been asking us – especially our mailman, cuz we haven’t been home in a while… so let’s see, where did we go… a little bit of everywhere really. We road tripped up the CA coast in a van thanks to you and…

Youth against the machine I’m so proud of you

Editor’s Note: Last Friday night I got emotional. I was watching recaps of what happened in the world that week and a lot had happened. Part of me was on the verge of tears watching young people, you, the youth, standing toe-to-toe with politicians and paid speakers and paid pros for the NRA, and I saw…

Outside the Comfort Zone San Francisco to Florida to the North Shore to “The Other Guys.”

It’s been one of those days. Weeks. Years. Hell, six years. I haven’t used my own soap in three weeks. My bag of clothes is soggy. I miss my bed and I’ve seen three time zones in a week, but I’ve surfed, talked, laughed, drank, filmed and even worn a headset and done commentary for…

Media Model Subsidy Line Noise Ordinances and surf video making with Mitch Coleborn, Harry Bryant, Nate Tyler, Colin Moran and more

This morning we received a note on our front door reminding us that this town operates under a noise ordinance and that we may have been in violation during our first night here. And I may know why. You see, we lucked into an AirBnb that’s equipped with a pool table in the sun room, and last…

what youth harry bryant surf trip

Well, you’re hired We reached out to you and you delivered. Now it’s time to go

Holy shit, it worked!  The idea hatched over a pitcher of margaritas the other night is a reality. And it’s all because of you. You have officially funded the What Youth California ramp hunt and now the boys are ready to send it. We’re starting tomorrow and making it official: The What Youth film project,…

what youth surf trip kickstarter

Wanna help Produce our next film? We’re making a WY surf vid and we need liftoff. And that’s where you come in.

Remember “We quit, we’re poor” and all that when we started What Youth? Well, not much has changed: still pretty passionate, still pretty strapped. But we we wanna keep creating. And we need your help to get this fire started. As you read this, there’s a bunch of us assembling for some reckless abandon on…

dear youth david bowie has a book club

David Bowie Has A Book Club Maybe 2018 won’t be terrible after all

When history looks back at our bizarre little era, it will agree on one thing: Everything went to shit real quick right after David Bowie died. It’s baffling how quickly reality unraveled after David Robert Jones left us in early 2016. Muhammad Ali, Prince, Tom Petty and a whole bunch of people you really like passed…

Quiksilver has acquired rival Billabong In the least shocking headline you’ll read today

I know this headline isn’t as good as: “Iguanas are freezing and falling from trees.” Or “It’s so cold that sharks are dying.” But we’ll give it a shot. Quiksilver and Billabong are now owned by the same company. This was posted last night by our fabulous friends and drinking buddies and hard-hitting journalists at…

Hunter Martinez, San Francisco

2018: Fitter, Happier…still on antibiotics Here we go again

To be modern is to find ourselves in an environment that promises us adventure, power, joy, growth, transformation of ourselves and our world – and at the same time, that threatens to destroy everything we have, everything we know, everything we are…—Marshall Berman 2018 and I woke up strange. My FICO score changed (for the…

Blake Myers, Noa Deane

Save What Youth Dot Com And the rest of our little digital realm for that matter

I have loads of nasty habits. I drink six cups of coffee every morning, I let my wetsuit ferment in the back of my car because I’m too lazy to rinse it out, and I’ve caught myself watching the Oi Rio Pro un-ironically on several occasions. But there’s one stupid, habitual quirk I do every single…

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