This is a little bit ridiculous, but I’m writing from a log on the beach surrounded by sand dollars while tethered to Internet from my futuristic iPhone. I’m watching Andrew Doheny, Dillon Perillo and Yago Dora rip a reform somewhere near the center of California. It aint perfect but it’s pretty damn fun and the weather is warmer today. Our van smells too weird to work inside of. And my wetsuit is broken. So I’m sitting this one out.
As I was sitting here, I began to think back to some of the early days of hanging with a then 12-year-old Andrew Doheny. I got to go on a boat trip with him when he was 12 and he’d draw Sharpie mustaches and eat candy nonstop and blow my mind at how his style was both smooth and radical. Him standing up was a site to see. Hard to describe but it was innate and raw.
Then when I would see him around at home he’d wear HSS sweat-pantsuits and get results in NSSA contests and basically be a classic Orange County surf grom. His future pretty well mapped out: NSSA, WSA, WQS, WSL or something like that. But today, he looks very different. Now he sits in the back of the van watching ancient YouTube videos learning about musicians, telling tales of his storied last name (which is wild, more on that later) — and very perfectly and spontaneously dropping comedic one-liners that seem to be brewed so deep in his mind that it’s an honor to be the first to hear them. They are not censored or planned but they are generally very on point. It’s very similar to his surfing.
He only brought one pair of sunglasses on the trip. They’re Black Fly’s and green with yellow lenses. He wears them un-ironically when the sun is out. For sun protection. He sometimes blends in with the homeless population walking through the city because of his massive pea coat and use of a Vape e-cig thing. But that’s just Andrew now. He’s committed to being himself and didn’t let the way you’re supposed to go about things dictate his path. He’s not going to Hawaii this year because it’s not his thing. But he doesn’t expect to be rewarded when he doesn’t deserve it either. He’s happy to be him and if that suits you and wanna hang, cool. If not, he won’t even notice. And he sure as hell isn’t going to complain about any part of it. He just cruises, drops a few lines from the back seat and then when we’re surfing, he’ll quietly do a warped forehand whip that will be up being the clip of the day.
He’s a long way from an NSSA-HSS pantsuit track suit-Team USA past, but who he is today is the real thing and he sure is fucking interesting. And he’s also brilliant.
Our own Michael Cukr had a container of Ranch in his jacket for 2 days. And it was Andrew who personally knew the drama that could have been. After a period of silence, he perked up. “There is nothing worse than spilling condiments on your clothes!” he said with grave earnest. As if he’d been there many times before. —Travis
Keep checking back as we finish up our trip for the upcoming This is Us: North trip right here, on Scrapbook, sometimes SnapChat and all over this great state of CA.